Religious Science?
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29-07-2014, 09:37 AM
Religious Science?
I had a very short conversation last night with my sister. She identifies her religion as "Religious Science", I am still unsure of what exactly that means. Anyways, I thought I would share a little outline of claims that she made and some of my responses. I would love other opinions as well.

We started off talking about something we both agreed with, that it is abusive to teach little children the story of Revelations from the Bible, and to tell them that we are living in the end times right now. Then I brought up Atheism, and this is when things kind of took a weird turn.

She said that she doesn't believe in the god that everyone talks about, but that she believes that god is just good energy, and she believes in a lot of Stephen Hawkings stuff. The she said that the Big Bang was caused by negative energy. And keep in mind her definition of negative energy is like the energy that makes you sick and clogs up your "chakras". I told her I didn't believe in the energy stuff (in regards to what she is talking about). So she asks me if I have ever seen the "water molecule test, and the one for tears" I hadn't, but I did just look it up this morning to find that the tests have NEVER been recreated successfully, essentially making it pseudoscience and unreliable. She also asked me if I believe that thoughts are energy. Again, that vague term "energy". She then continues with telling me that your thoughts affect your health (which, I know there is little bit of truth to, but not to the extent that she is speaking of). Then she uses anecdotal evidence by saying she has read stories of people curing their cancer with just their thoughts and meditation. She also believes you can cure cancer with diet and exercise. I told her that that is the same argument people use to prove prayer works, that when those things do work it's because of other factors, or coincidence. She replied by saying that she believes that if you believe something so much in your reality, that it is true. Now...I can kind of sort of get on board with that idea, except for the fact that you can't just believe gravity doesn't exist so much that it's true. I don't believe you can cure a terminal illness by simply believing you don't have it. However, I do believe in perception. Just because you perceive something as true or false however, does not make it true or false. I believe in constants and absolutes, and her way of thinking defies that completely.

She ended the conversation with telling me that there is a huge difference between prayer, and meditation/the law of attraction (which she is also a believer in). I fail to see the differences. The only difference is that one you are praying to a god, and the other you are essentially praying to the universe or yourself. Not to mention meditation is another incredibly vague term. Their are so many different types of meditation, some more credible than others. It just pains me to see people buy into this crap with little to no evidence, then label it as truth. Does anyone have any input on this?
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29-07-2014, 10:17 AM
RE: Religious Science?
Religious science, to be worthy of the name, would only last until someone attempted to repeat its experiments. It'd go something like this:
RS (Religious Scientist): Negative energy (for the sake of argument, assume this can actually be defined in a way that isn't bullshit) makes you sick. This experiment proves it.
AS (Actual Scientist): What were your parameters?
RS: Oh, we did so and so...
AS: Alright... Hm... Nope. I tried it your way and sent the details to several of my colleagues, who sent them to several of their colleagues, and we have found no correlation between negative energy and sickness.
RS: Damn. Well, guess I should try real science then. I get to keep my initials and everything!
AS: Go for it, bud.

The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
Why settle for normal, when you can be so much more? Why settle for something, when you can have everything?
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29-07-2014, 10:26 AM
RE: Religious Science?
Without a coherent testable claim, with appropriate falsifiability criteria and a competent audience, it's not scientific. End of story.

What she's really saying is that she believes in real science only so far as it doesn't contradict her woo.

Ask her what would change her mind.

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29-07-2014, 01:00 PM
RE: Religious Science?
I would have done this




[Image: Guilmon-41189.gif] https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCOW_Ioi2wtuPa88FvBmnBgQ my youtube
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04-08-2014, 11:34 AM
RE: Religious Science?
There is this "yogi" who was recently exposed by a few female followers here in Turkey.. All very well college educated women simply let themselves abused because they believed having sex with "the master" would open their chakra more and let them fine tune with the universe... They divorced their husbands, left their families behind, put his shoes on, drive him around, sold their homes and all their valuables, they only read his books and they fell asleep by listening to his CDs oh and they of course had sex with the master even fought among themselves for it.

I'm bringing this up because they all said things about "energy" and universe and how they believed "the master" could allow them to see this energy and such..
it took a pissed boyfriend to sign up as a follower, hack his email accounts and stuff like that to eventually expose the monkey for what he truly is...

burden of proof is not on the shoulders of atheists, it's not you who claim to know how the bigbang actually happened, it is your sister... Science doesn't require belief.

"Pretend, this is a quote which would make you question your own wisdom and your life will never be the same after reading this." - Turk
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04-08-2014, 07:57 PM (This post was last modified: 04-08-2014 08:13 PM by Luminon.)
RE: Religious Science?
(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  I had a very short conversation last night with my sister. She identifies her religion as "Religious Science", I am still unsure of what exactly that means. Anyways, I thought I would share a little outline of claims that she made and some of my responses. I would love other opinions as well.
I take up the offer. I gave this topic much thought over the years and I consider myself somewhat of an authority.

(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  She said that she doesn't believe in the god that everyone talks about, but that she believes that god is just good energy, and she believes in a lot of Stephen Hawkings stuff. The she said that the Big Bang was caused by negative energy.
Strictly speaking, that paragraph is true. There is nothing but energy in the universe and god can not be in principle nothing else but energy. I wrote an article on this and much other stuff, but it's not in English and nobody's interested enough.

I think I heard the negative energy in physics in the context of "dark energy" that expands the space. I don't believe it. It is true that expansion of space decreases the energy per cubic million light years or something, but it only smears it out, the amount of energy remains the same, plus dark energy. So I don't believe in such a thing as "negative energy" or strictly said "antienergy".

(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  And keep in mind her definition of negative energy is like the energy that makes you sick and clogs up your "chakras".

Nah, I have a great deal of experience with clogged chakras and I can guarantee you that this stuff did not cause the Big Bang Drinking Beverage But I am open to the idea (read: fanatical proponent) that there is a spectrum of invisible matter, just like there is a spectrum of invisible light. Of course, this matter would likely have a wave-nature like the light itself, so it doesn't interfere with each other unless it's of a similar parameters. Or some other mechanism to explain why it mostly passes through our instruments and bodies like ghost matter. My amateur guess is, that this spectrum of invisible matter equals to the sum called by astronomers "dark matter". My wild-ass guess isn't made any more modest by the fact, that recently scientists managed to convert light to regular matter.

(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  I told her I didn't believe in the energy stuff (in regards to what she is talking about). So she asks me if I have ever seen the "water molecule test, and the one for tears" I hadn't, but I did just look it up this morning to find that the tests have NEVER been recreated successfully, essentially making it pseudoscience and unreliable. She also asked me if I believe that thoughts are energy. Again, that vague term "energy". She then continues with telling me that your thoughts affect your health (which, I know there is little bit of truth to, but not to the extent that she is speaking of). Then she uses anecdotal evidence by saying she has read stories of people curing their cancer with just their thoughts and meditation. She also believes you can cure cancer with diet and exercise. I told her that that is the same argument people use to prove prayer works, that when those things do work it's because of other factors, or coincidence.
You have a point, you shouldn't believe anything that isn't reliably demonstrated. I have my personal stances due to a lifetime of hands-on experience and somewhat over-sensitive tweaked up nerve system. I only insist on trusting my senses myself, but nobody else should just believe me, it's my senses, not yours. And I don't like when people believe in things they did not observe themselves multiple times close up, like I do - even if they believed in the same thing. That's cheating!

(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  She replied by saying that she believes that if you believe something so much in your reality, that it is true. Now...I can kind of sort of get on board with that idea, except for the fact that you can't just believe gravity doesn't exist so much that it's true. I don't believe you can cure a terminal illness by simply believing you don't have it. However, I do believe in perception. Just because you perceive something as true or false however, does not make it true or false. I believe in constants and absolutes, and her way of thinking defies that completely.
Belief isn't even a perception. Perception is reliable if it's physical sensations, but I don't even know what belief is, really. I think it's emotional attachment to something that isn't even well defined, such as "energy".
I have my private attempts at definition, but your sister doesn't. It's true this stuff is not easy to define at all and such people rely on shared experience to get by with each other. There really aren't (m)any things like this woo "energy" that could be mistaken for it. But if I should explain it to someone else, it's like that plasma ball toy that you see in shops sometimes, and this plasma is usually just slightly warm and it flows in filaments in our body and floats around with clouds and tingles like an almost pleasant electric current. There is nothing else like it. The reason why it doesn't burn (usually much) is probably the same weird reason why the spectrum of matter does not interfere much with our matter.

I don't know how about terminal illnesses. This is so wildly individual as to be quite meaningless for discussion. I can only say, there are ways to get to a vastly increased amount of this "energy" and I would not be surprised if such people would be generally much more resistant to common infections. However, such an inflow of "energy" might cause a whole new array of problems, especially psychological.

(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  She ended the conversation with telling me that there is a huge difference between prayer, and meditation/the law of attraction (which she is also a believer in). I fail to see the differences. The only difference is that one you are praying to a god, and the other you are essentially praying to the universe or yourself. Not to mention meditation is another incredibly vague term. Their are so many different types of meditation, some more credible than others. It just pains me to see people buy into this crap with little to no evidence, then label it as truth. Does anyone have any input on this?
Again, you are by far the one more reasonable here. Prayer and meditation are similar, but I don't believe your sister can do either of these correctly with any real effectiveness. I meditate for about 7 years and the beginning is about gathering the scattered mind chatter and developing a power of concentration. If you do it right, it forces changes in your life style and life attitude, that again help to meditate better. It's a lifetime hobby, basically. Without developing the power of concentration it is like powering a LHC with car battery and trying to fuse some elements.

The people with this law of attraction stuff usually don't consider themselves a part of the universe and don't understand that they are supposed to do their share of work too, not just some abstract universal forces.

Basically, just because we're crazy woo peddlers, that doesn't excuse us from being rational and intelligent and defining our concepts. If we don't have evidence, we're should only talk about this stuff in private or anonymously on the internet and be prepared for skeptical people defending their healthy boundaries. If you want some reasonable scientific hypotheses as to how this stuff probably works when done in a real (dangerous) way, read the 2008 book "Biology of Kundalini" by Jana Dixon and "Stalking the Wild Pendulum" by Itzhak Bentov. You might also want to get one or both as a Christmas gift for your sister. It's about time she'd take her hobby seriously.
In your place I'd ask your sister if she really physically perceives the energy and chakras, or if it's just vague something she could be imagining, or if she feels nothing at all and just believes in this stuff.
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04-08-2014, 08:24 PM
RE: Religious Science?
(04-08-2014 07:57 PM)Luminon Wrote:  
(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  I had a very short conversation last night with my sister. She identifies her religion as "Religious Science", I am still unsure of what exactly that means. Anyways, I thought I would share a little outline of claims that she made and some of my responses. I would love other opinions as well.
I take up the offer. I gave this topic much thought over the years and I consider myself somewhat of an authority.

(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  She said that she doesn't believe in the god that everyone talks about, but that she believes that god is just good energy, and she believes in a lot of Stephen Hawkings stuff. The she said that the Big Bang was caused by negative energy.
Strictly speaking, that paragraph is true. There is nothing but energy in the universe and god can not be in principle nothing else but energy. I wrote an article on this and much other stuff, but it's not in English and nobody's interested enough.

I think I heard the negative energy in physics in the context of "dark energy" that expands the space. I don't believe it. It is true that expansion of space decreases the energy per cubic million light years or something, but it only smears it out, the amount of energy remains the same, plus dark energy. So I don't believe in such a thing as "negative energy" or strictly said "antienergy".

(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  And keep in mind her definition of negative energy is like the energy that makes you sick and clogs up your "chakras".

Nah, I have a great deal of experience with clogged chakras and I can guarantee you that this stuff did not cause the Big Bang Drinking Beverage But I am open to the idea (read: fanatical proponent) that there is a spectrum of invisible matter, just like there is a spectrum of invisible light. Of course, this matter would likely have a wave-nature like the light itself, so it doesn't interfere with each other unless it's of a similar parameters. Or some other mechanism to explain why it mostly passes through our instruments and bodies like ghost matter. My amateur guess is, that this spectrum of invisible matter equals to the sum called by astronomers "dark matter". My wild-ass guess isn't made any more modest by the fact, that recently scientists managed to convert light to regular matter.

(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  I told her I didn't believe in the energy stuff (in regards to what she is talking about). So she asks me if I have ever seen the "water molecule test, and the one for tears" I hadn't, but I did just look it up this morning to find that the tests have NEVER been recreated successfully, essentially making it pseudoscience and unreliable. She also asked me if I believe that thoughts are energy. Again, that vague term "energy". She then continues with telling me that your thoughts affect your health (which, I know there is little bit of truth to, but not to the extent that she is speaking of). Then she uses anecdotal evidence by saying she has read stories of people curing their cancer with just their thoughts and meditation. She also believes you can cure cancer with diet and exercise. I told her that that is the same argument people use to prove prayer works, that when those things do work it's because of other factors, or coincidence.
You have a point, you shouldn't believe anything that isn't reliably demonstrated. I have my personal stances due to a lifetime of hands-on experience and somewhat over-sensitive tweaked up nerve system. I only insist on trusting my senses myself, but nobody else should just believe me, it's my senses, not yours. And I don't like when people believe in things they did not observe themselves multiple times close up, like I do - even if they believed in the same thing. That's cheating!

(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  She replied by saying that she believes that if you believe something so much in your reality, that it is true. Now...I can kind of sort of get on board with that idea, except for the fact that you can't just believe gravity doesn't exist so much that it's true. I don't believe you can cure a terminal illness by simply believing you don't have it. However, I do believe in perception. Just because you perceive something as true or false however, does not make it true or false. I believe in constants and absolutes, and her way of thinking defies that completely.
Belief isn't even a perception. Perception is reliable if it's physical sensations, but I don't even know what belief is, really. I think it's emotional attachment to something that isn't even well defined, such as "energy".
I have my private attempts at definition, but your sister doesn't. It's true this stuff is not easy to define at all and such people rely on shared experience to get by with each other. There really aren't (m)any things like this woo "energy" that could be mistaken for it. But if I should explain it to someone else, it's like that plasma ball toy that you see in shops sometimes, and this plasma is usually just slightly warm and it flows in filaments in our body and floats around with clouds and tingles like an almost pleasant electric current. There is nothing else like it. The reason why it doesn't burn (usually much) is probably the same weird reason why the spectrum of matter does not interfere much with our matter.

I don't know how about terminal illnesses. This is so wildly individual as to be quite meaningless for discussion. I can only say, there are ways to get to a vastly increased amount of this "energy" and I would not be surprised if such people would be generally much more resistant to common infections. However, such an inflow of "energy" might cause a whole new array of problems, especially psychological.

(29-07-2014 09:37 AM)Punk Pumpkin Wrote:  She ended the conversation with telling me that there is a huge difference between prayer, and meditation/the law of attraction (which she is also a believer in). I fail to see the differences. The only difference is that one you are praying to a god, and the other you are essentially praying to the universe or yourself. Not to mention meditation is another incredibly vague term. Their are so many different types of meditation, some more credible than others. It just pains me to see people buy into this crap with little to no evidence, then label it as truth. Does anyone have any input on this?
Again, you are by far the one more reasonable here. Prayer and meditation are similar, but I don't believe your sister can do either of these correctly with any real effectiveness. I meditate for about 7 years and the beginning is about gathering the scattered mind chatter and developing a power of concentration. If you do it right, it forces changes in your life style and life attitude, that again help to meditate better. It's a lifetime hobby, basically. Without developing the power of concentration it is like powering a LHC with car battery and trying to fuse some elements.

The people with this law of attraction stuff usually don't consider themselves a part of the universe and don't understand that they are supposed to do their share of work too, not just some abstract universal forces.

Basically, just because we're crazy woo peddlers, that doesn't excuse us from being rational and intelligent and defining our concepts. If we don't have evidence, we're should only talk about this stuff in private or anonymously on the internet and be prepared for skeptical people defending their healthy boundaries. If you want some reasonable scientific hypotheses as to how this stuff probably works when done in a real (dangerous) way, read the 2008 book "Biology of Kundalini" by Jana Dixon and "Stalking the Wild Pendulum" by Itzhak Bentov. You might also want to get one or both as a Christmas gift for your sister. It's about time she'd take her hobby seriously.
In your place I'd ask your sister if she really physically perceives the energy and chakras, or if it's just vague something she could be imagining, or if she feels nothing at all and just believes in this stuff.

Thank you so much for your in depth reply. I really enjoy your perspective!
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