I've seen the tests he has conducted. Didn't see anything wrong with the methods. But my post was more to the point that the capacity to know others' minds directly should be a demonstrable skill, even if cognitively closed to others. But I have yet to see anyone demonstrate it. The door stands open...
It is, but I’m pretty sure those able to perform it will never go to Randi’s challenge. Nor will anyone with plain common sense. Even the so called skeptics are moving away from Randi, whose honesty is now seriously challenged both professionally and privately. The fact that you mention his “challenge” as an example goes to show how biased are your opinions.
The Randi Prize
Randi's main claim to fame is that he offers a million dollar prize to "any person or persons who can demonstrate any psychic, supernatural or paranormal ability of any kind under satisfactory observing conditions". According to the James Randi Educational Foundation web site, "JREF will not entertain any demand that the prize money be deposited in escrow, displayed in cash, or otherwise produced in advance of the test being performed."
The conditions for the prize are set out on the JREF web site Randi challenge
The rules are conceived by a showman not a scientist, and make little sense from a genuinely scientific point of view. The introduction to the rules states, "All tests must be designed in such a way that the results are self-evident, and no judging process is required." Most scientific research, including research in particle physics, clinical medicine, conventional psychology and parapsychology, depends on statistical results that need to be analysed by experts to judge the significance of what has happened. Practically all serious scientific research would fail to qualify for the Randi prize. Contenders have to pay for their own travelling expenses if they want to go to Randi to be tested: Rule 6: "All expenses such as transportation, accommodation and/or other costs incurred by the applicant/claimant in pursuing the reward, are the sole responsibility of the applicant/claimant." Also, applicants waive their legal rights: Rule 7: "When entering into this challenge, the applicant surrenders any and all rights to legal action against Mr. Randi, against any person peripherally involved and against the James Randi Educational Foundation, as far as this may be done by established statutes. This applies to injury, accident, or any other damage of a physical or emotional nature and/or financial, or professional loss, or damage of any kind." Applicants also give Randi complete control over publicity. Rule 3: "Applicant agrees that all data (photographic, recorded, written, etc.) of any sort gathered as a result of the testing may be used freely by the JREF."
For many years this "prize" has been Randi's stock-in-trade as a media skeptic, but even some other skeptics are skeptical about its value as anything but a publicity stunt. For example, CSICOP founding member Dennis Rawlins pointed out that not only does Randi act as "policeman, judge and jury" but quoted him as saying "I always have an out"! (Fate, October 1981). A leading Fellow of CSICOP, Ray Hyman, has pointed out, this "prize" cannot be taken seriously from a scientific point of view: "Scientists don't settle issues with a single test, so even if someone does win a big cash prize in a demonstration, this isn't going to convince anyone. Proof in science happens through replication, not through single experiments." Randi's fellow showman Loyd Auerbach, President of the Psychic Entertainers Association, is likewise sceptical about this "prize" and sees it as of no scientific value.
One example on how Randi blatantly lies, when trying to debunk an experiment by Rupert Sheldrake:
The January 2000 issue of Dog World magazine included an article on a possible sixth sense in dogs, which discussed some of my research. In this article Randi was quoted as saying that in relation to canine ESP, "We at the JREF [James Randi Educational Foundation] have tested these claims. They fail." No details were given of these tests.
I emailed James Randi to ask for details of this JREF research. He did not reply. He ignored a second request for information too.
I then asked members of the JREF Scientific Advisory Board to help me find out more about this claim. They did indeed help by advising Randi to reply. In an email sent on Februaury 6, 2000 he told me that the tests he referred to were not done at the JREF, but took place "years ago" and were "informal". They involved two dogs belonging to a friend of his that he observed over a two-week period. All records had been lost. He wrote: "I overstated my case for doubting the reality of dog ESP based on the small amount of data I obtained. It was rash and improper of me to do so."
Randi also claimed to have debunked one of my experiments with the dog Jaytee, a part of which was shown on television. Jaytee went to the window to wait for his owner when she set off to come home, but did not do so before she set off. In Dog World, Randi stated: "Viewing the entire tape, we see that the dog responded to every car that drove by, and to every person who walked by." This is simply not true, and Randi now admits that he has never seen the tape.
Randi is not afraid to attack scientists who take an interest in subjects like telepathy, like Brian Josephson, Professor of Physics at Cambridge University. In 2001, on a BBC Radio program about Josephson’s interest in possible connections between quantum physics and consciousness, Randi said, “I think it is the refuge of scoundrels in many aspects for them to turn to something like quantum physics.” Josephson has a Nobel Prize in quantum physics. Randi has no scientific credentials. Of his current work, he writes, “We at the JREF are skilled in two directions: we know how people are fooled by others and we know how people fool themselves. We deal with hard, basic facts.” Yet in a review of his book The Supernatural A-Z: The Truth and the Lies, his fellow skeptic Susan Blackmore commented that the book “has too many errors to be recommended.” He has also been shown to invent "facts" and make up evidence.
Another analysis of the so called challenge by Michael Prescott:http://michaelprescott.typepad.com/mich ... lenge.html
and another:http://dailygrail.com/features/the-myth ... -challenge
While not ignoring that these guys are in the opposite side of Randi’s beliefs, the fact remains that their criticisms are valid.
Randi is a liar and a crusader for materialism.
This is the second time you've accused me of parroting new atheists movement propaganda. What such propaganda exactly have I been parroting?
Just as an example, suggesting that the Randi’s challenge has any merit to make your case when it has none.
This topic has nothing to do with theism/atheism or even materialism, and I have quoted no one part of the new atheist movement.
New atheist movement, CSICOP, CSI, these are all the same crew. Your arguments are exactly the sort of stuff they present. If it walks like a duck and it quacks like a duck…
Once again, I've merely stated what science has been able to indicate at this point and asked a question of Buddhists here. Criticizing materialists or science is not an attempt to form an argument in your favor.
Science at this point has been able to indicate that apparently there are neural correlates of mental phenomena. A causal relation is a guess based on metaphysical predilections, not scientific facts. In vulgar terms, it’s a mere belief and you try to pass it as more plausible then others. This suffers from a myopic ethnocentrism that alienates itself from other avenues of knowledge developed by different civilizations and methodologies. Buddhists have a long history of observing mind and mental phenomena. Consciousness was a dirty word in Psychology a few decades back.
If you don't wish to offer an answer, please discontinue insulting my intelligence here.
But I and others have been offering answers. You just keep posting the hard line skeptics poorly thought arguments. I’m close to consider this trolling.
I ask you not to answer with sentences like the above. Acchantika is indeed informed and shows no signs of living under any rock; please tell me where does it say that the emergence theory of mind is a product of neuroscientists, not philosophers.
If you must, this video for example was very easy to find upon a simple search on youtube.
The lecturer, Jay Gunkelman, is not a philosopher but is one of the worlds top neuroscientists and has specialized in qEEG and EEG neurofeedback for over 20 years. A pioneer in many areas of research related to the brain and its function.
In this video, Gunkelman describes how consciousness can be identified by emergent properties between the DC field potentials "glial"
and neural system "eeg rhythms" and how they interact to form consciousness.
It's a scientific theory based on indications happening inside the brain, not just a philosophical opinion without base.
The emergence theory of mind is a product of philosophers to which some scientists adhere. That's the only thing your video proves, not that the emergence theory of mind was created by scientists. You seem to be too much impressed by neuroscience.
Perhaps this article helps you to evaluate your position.
ABSTRACT—Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies of emotion, personality, and social cognition have drawn much attention in recent years, with high-proﬁle studies frequently reporting extremely high (e.g., >.8) correlations between brain activation and personality measures.
We show that these correlations are higher than should be expected given the (evidently limited) reliability of both fMRI and personality measures. The high correlations are all the more puzzling because method sections rarely contain much detail about how the correlations were obtained. We surveyed authors of 55 articles that reported ﬁndings of this kind to determine a few details on how these correlations were computed. More than half acknowledged using a strategy that computes separate correlations for individual voxels and reports means of only those voxels exceeding chosen thresholds. We show how this nonindependent analysis inﬂates correlations while yielding reassuring-looking scattergrams.
This analysis technique was used to obtain the vast majority of the implausibly high correlations in our survey sample. In addition, we argue that, in some cases,other analysis problems likely created entirely spurious correlations. We outline how the data from these studies could be reanalyzed with unbiased methods to provide accurate estimates of the correlations in question and urge authors to perform such reanalyses. The underlying problems described here appear to be common in fMRI research of many kinds—not just in studies of emotion, personality, and social cognition.
Full article: http://www.pashler.com/Articles/Vul_eta ... npress.pdf