Why Does the Supernatural Explanation Take Priority?
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30-10-2014, 06:33 PM
Why Does the Supernatural Explanation Take Priority?
When I browse various forums, and sometimes this one, I often see the supernatural explanation take priority over rational explanation.

I used to do it myself, back when I believed in ghosts. I'd lay in bed and if I heard a noise downstairs I would never think it was the cats, or the wind etc. No. I would immediately think it was a ghost and I'd lay there scared until I eventually went to sleep. Nowadays I just know it's the cat and I go back to sleep without a second thought.

Why would I consciously dismiss all rational thought and jump immediately to an absurd explanation?

I see Christians do it too. If they have a dream that involves god then it's a VISION. They will dismiss the fact that everyone dreams on a nightly basis and instead insert the supernatural.

I can understand people doing it if they don't know why something happens. But to dismiss what you already know as a natural explanation and replace it with a supernatural one is just outrageous.

So why do people do it? Everyone from ghost hunters, to religious people, to people hunting big foot. What is wired into us to dismiss reality and opt for the myth?
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30-10-2014, 06:40 PM
RE: Why Does the Supernatural Explanation Take Priority?
Because they've found no other way to get proof, so they need to resort to misinterpreting things.


(30-10-2014 06:33 PM)TheStraightener Wrote:  I used to do it myself, back when I believed in ghosts. I'd lay in bed and if I heard a noise downstairs I would never think it was the cats, or the wind etc. No. I would immediately think it was a ghost and I'd lay there scared until I eventually went to sleep. Nowadays I just know it's the cat and I go back to sleep without a second thought.

I still do this, though less with ghosts, more with whatever random stupid thing currently creeps me out. Once it gets dark outside, suddenly all my rationale just disappears. It's kind of fascinating. Especially how it manages to make me afraid of things that, even if they did exist, would have no way nor reason to be in my room. Undecided

Popcorn I put more thought into fiction than theists put into reality.
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30-10-2014, 06:47 PM (This post was last modified: 30-10-2014 06:50 PM by pablo.)
RE: Why Does the Supernatural Explanation Take Priority?
Indoctrination, superstion, and dogma.
Throw in some positive reinforcement from the church and peers and you've got yourself a religion.
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30-10-2014, 06:57 PM
RE: Why Does the Supernatural Explanation Take Priority?
(30-10-2014 06:40 PM)CleverUsername Wrote:  Because they've found no other way to get proof, so they need to resort to misinterpreting things.


(30-10-2014 06:33 PM)TheStraightener Wrote:  I used to do it myself, back when I believed in ghosts. I'd lay in bed and if I heard a noise downstairs I would never think it was the cats, or the wind etc. No. I would immediately think it was a ghost and I'd lay there scared until I eventually went to sleep. Nowadays I just know it's the cat and I go back to sleep without a second thought.

I still do this, though less with ghosts, more with whatever random stupid thing currently creeps me out. Once it gets dark outside, suddenly all my rationale just disappears. It's kind of fascinating. Especially how it manages to make me afraid of things that, even if they did exist, would have no way nor reason to be in my room. Undecided

That kind of makes sense lol. I suppose i do still experience it on rare occaision if I've just watched a good horror film. But if i didn't watch that film I'd have never have felt that way.
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30-10-2014, 09:41 PM
RE: Why Does the Supernatural Explanation Take Priority?
Sometimes I like to scare myself by thinking there are ghosts or people hiding in my house. Or some demon or some crap. You know, for fun!

I think it is just the easiest possible answer that does not require evidence for the claim itself to be made that makes it so easy to do.

Why did that earthquake happen? Because God! Why did god do it? Well obviously he is mad! Who is god mad at? Well I am VERY mad at gay people, I hate gay people so much I want to kill every last one on the entire planet...ok! So if god is exactly like ME, than god hates gay people and thus that is the reason for the earthquake.

God made that earthquake happen because we allow gay people to keep living.

This is the mind set of the Theist.


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30-10-2014, 10:54 PM
RE: Why Does the Supernatural Explanation Take Priority?
I believe it's because it's much harder to disprove these little irrationalities and that causes it to rise up the charts in some peoples heads.

It's generally a first reaction because we're likely to stay alive if we freak out and protect ourselves first.

"Allow there to be a spectrum in all that you see" - Neil Degrasse Tyson
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30-10-2014, 11:34 PM
RE: Why Does the Supernatural Explanation Take Priority?
Quote:When I browse various forums, and sometimes this one, I often see the supernatural explanation take priority over rational explanation.


Browse better forums!

Atheism is NOT a Religion. It's A Personal Relationship With Reality!
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31-10-2014, 01:24 AM
RE: Why Does the Supernatural Explanation Take Priority?
In the 'fear of X' at night set, I think it's our natural fear of the dark combined with excessing sence of agency and/or excessive threat detection. Basically in the dark we feel vulnerable and since we are we are looking for 'someone' causing events instead of 'something' causing events and weighting events as 'possible threats' first as a sort of hyper vigilant danger responce. The preceding was aa total guess. Tongue
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31-10-2014, 01:26 AM
RE: Why Does the Supernatural Explanation Take Priority?
(30-10-2014 11:34 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  
Quote:When I browse various forums, and sometimes this one, I often see the supernatural explanation take priority over rational explanation.


Browse better forums!

My sentiments exactly. Wink

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31-10-2014, 05:58 AM
RE: Why Does the Supernatural Explanation Take Priority?
(30-10-2014 06:33 PM)TheStraightener Wrote:  When I browse various forums, and sometimes this one, I often see the supernatural explanation take priority over rational explanation.

I used to do it myself, back when I believed in ghosts. I'd lay in bed and if I heard a noise downstairs I would never think it was the cats, or the wind etc. No. I would immediately think it was a ghost and I'd lay there scared until I eventually went to sleep. Nowadays I just know it's the cat and I go back to sleep without a second thought.

Why would I consciously dismiss all rational thought and jump immediately to an absurd explanation?

I see Christians do it too. If they have a dream that involves god then it's a VISION. They will dismiss the fact that everyone dreams on a nightly basis and instead insert the supernatural.

I can understand people doing it if they don't know why something happens. But to dismiss what you already know as a natural explanation and replace it with a supernatural one is just outrageous.

So why do people do it? Everyone from ghost hunters, to religious people, to people hunting big foot. What is wired into us to dismiss reality and opt for the myth?

Long story short: evolution.

Pattern recognition and attributing intention to others were helpful to our ancestors. Those mind tools are imperfect and our minds don't always get it right.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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