Parapsychology is incompatible with physics

Discussion in 'Parapsychology' started by mikemikev, Jan 9, 2015.

  1. mikemikev Registered Member

    The ideas of psi (precognition, psychokinesis and telepathy) violate well-established laws of physics.

    The evidence says psi is physically impossible:

    So how do parapsychologists explain this? They just ignore it?
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  3. origin Heading towards oblivion Valued Senior Member

    Yes, they just ignore it or make excuses why paracrap is not measurable or repeatable.
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  5. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

    Then again, quantum entanglement violates the 2nd law of thermodynamics too. Evidently classical laws don't apply at the quantum level.

    The production of methanol in outer space also appears to bypass the laws of physics via quantum tunneling...

    From a review of “Debunked: ESP, Telekinesis, and other Psuedoscience”, by Charpak and Broch, by physicist Freeman Dyson:

    "… There are strange events which appear to give evidence of supernatural influences operating in everyday life. They are not [always] the result of deliberate fraud or trickery, but only of the laws of probability. The paradoxical feature of the laws of probability is that they make unlikely events happen unexpectedly often. A simple way to state the paradox is Littlewood’s law of miracles. Littlewood … a professional mathematician … defined a miracle as an event which has a special significance when it occurs, [and which] occurs with a probability of one in a million.

    Littlewood’s law of miracles states that in the course of a normal person’s life, miracles occur at the rate of roughly one a month. The proof of the law is simple. During the time that we are awake … we hear and see things happening at the rate of about one per second. So the total number of events that happen to us is about … one million per month.

    … Charpak and Broch and I agree that attempts to study ESP … have failed. Charpak and Broch say that since ESP and telepathy cannot be studied scientifically, they do not exist. Their conclusion is clear and logical but I do not accept it because I am not a reductionist. I claim that paranormal phenomena may really exist but may not be accessible to scientific investigation. This is a hypothesis. I am not saying that it is true, only that it is tenable, and to my mind plausible.

    … One fact that emerges clearly from the stories is that paranormal events occur, if they occur at all, only when people are under stress and experiencing strong emotion.

    … I should here declare my personal interest in the matter. One of my grandmothers was a notorious and successful faith healer.

    … Whether paranormal phenomena exist or not, the evidence for their existence is corrupted by a vast amount of nonsense and outright fraud.

    … A deluge of eloquent letters came in response to this review. Orthodox scientists were outraged because I considered the existence of telepathy to be possible. True believers in telepathy were outraged because I considered its existence to be unproven."===
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2015
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  7. C C Consular Corps - "the backbone of diplomacy" Valued Senior Member

    "Parapsychology is incompatible with physics"

    - - - - - -

    While I'm highly skeptical of parapsychology claims, concerns over "insufficient explanation" or brute emergence seem rare nowadays (novel effects, properties, etc arising that don't fall out of and could be predicted by precursor conditions and existing physics furniture). When the era of positivism (or what Henry Folse calls "The Empiricist Consensus") collapsed back in the sixties, one of its goals faded with it: That of unifying the assorted sciences by reducing each's own "in-house" conceptions, causes, principles and theoretical laundry to those of fundamental physics.

    The broad idea of that situation still "having to be the be case" lingers among some boastful physicists and their philosophical sympathizers; but is often regarded as an impotent fantasy to other fields of research formerly jealous of physics' lofty status back in those days. [Which is to say, general hand-wavings about such -- that lack having actually worked-out detailed interdisciplinary descriptions and mediating rules (or so-called "bridge laws") that reduce the whole of science to physics -- seems to impress few in current times.]

    For instance, when a Chalmers or a Penrose or somebody laments that biology and computer-related fields don't care about explaining how the experience characteristic of consciousness could follow from what's known about electrochemical and other microphysical affairs... The applicable experts are yet quite content to leave it an isolated issue floating at their own specialized levels of investigation. Just a matter of establishing correlations of those phenomenal manifestations to neural areas in the brain or any future fabricated electronic circuitry equivalents. Leaving an item appearing to be "magic" isn't magic as long the proper arrangement of components and their ritual performances reliably conjure / reproduce the brute novelty.

    A crude comparison for this apathy toward formulating a either a multi-stratified network of "sufficient explanation" or a template of overall guidance for "what's deeply going on" might be dredged-up with Alan Turing's historic frustration over groups who were only satisfied with quasi-arbitrary groping...

    "Turing’s own reports from Washington are filled with disdain for what he saw as America’s overreliance on technology rather than thought. 'I am persuaded that one cannot very well trust these people where a matter of judgment in cryptography is concerned,' he wrote. 'It astonished me to find that they make these elaborate calculations before they had really grasped the main principles. [But] I think we can make quite a lot of use of their machinery.'"

    Potential relic view lingering from the glory days of the "unification of the sciences" quest, now trying to survive without fundamental physics being central to its dreamed-about epistemological "monism":

    Alyssa Ney -- "The general goal of a theoretical reduction is to promote the unity of science. All of these models provide some sense in which science may become more unified. For sciences may become unified by being expressed in the same language. This allows one to see that there is only one language that is required to express all truths in the theories. Sciences may also become unified when the laws of one theory are shown to be derivable from those of another theory. This allows one to see that there is only one basic set of principles that is required to account for the other truths in the theories. Finally, sciences may become unified when the observations explained by one theory are shown to be also explainable by another theory. This allows one to see that only one of the theories is really necessary to explain the class of phenomena earlier thought to need the resources of two theories to explain." --Reductionism
  8. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    I'm not a believer in parapsychology and think that its claims have a very low probability of being true. Nevertheless...

    The phrase 'well-established laws of physics' does suggest several loopholes that they might try to exploit.

    'Well-established laws of physics' doesn't exclude the possibility of additional laws of physics that aren't so well-established in 2014, and perhaps even completely unknown to science at the present time. The laws of physics aren't a closed set.

    'Well-established laws of physics' are basically universal generalizations based on finite data sets. People thought that all swans are white, until they encountered black swans. The laws of physics aren't deductive necessities and violations of them don't seem to be logical impossibilities.

    'Well-established laws of physics' suggests that these are laws that concern the behavior of physical reality. There are those who argue for the existence of other kinds of non-physical realities as well, most prominently so-called 'spiritual' reality. There's Descartes' mind-body dualism and whatnot.
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  9. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

    "Psychologist James Alcock recently wrote that the claims of parapsychology "stand in defiance of the modern scientific worldview. That by itself does not mean that parapsychology is in error, but as the eminent neuropsychologist Donald Hebb pointed out, if the claims of parapsychology prove to be true, then physics and biology and neuroscience are horribly wrong in some fundamental respects."

    But neither Alcock, Hebb, Wiseman nor French ever bother to explain how the claims of parapsychology "stand in defiance" of science, or how "physics and physiology say that ESP is not a fact." Indeed, it is rare for a skeptic to ever back up this claim with specific examples. As I show in my new book Science and Psychic Phenomena, on those rare occasions they do, they invariably invoke the principles of classical physics, which have been known to be fundamentally incorrect for more than three quarters of a century.

    However, a number of leading physicists such as Henry Margenau, David Bohm, Brian Josephson, and Olivier Costra de Beauregard have repeatedly pointed out that nothing in quantum mechanics forbids psi phenomena. Costra de Beauregard even maintains that the theory of quantum physics virtually demands that psi phenomena exist. And physicist Evan Harris Walker has developed a theoretical model of psi based upon von Neumann's formulation of quantum mechanics.

    Ray Hyman's 1996 argument (in the Skeptical Inquirer) that the acceptance of psi would require that we "abandon relativity and quantum mechanics in their current formulations" is thereby shown to be nonsense. Contrast Hyman's statement with that of theoretical physicist Costa de Beauregard, who has written "relativistic quantum mechanics is a conceptual scheme where phenomena such as psychokinesis or telepathy, far from being irrational, should, on the contrary, be expected as very rational."

    As mentioned earlier, adherence to an outmoded metaphysics of science seems much more prevalent among psychologists than physicists. Skeptics such as psychologist Susan Blackmore are fond of saying that the existence of psi is incompatible "with our scientific worldview" — but with which scientific worldview? Psi is certainly incompatible with the old scientific worldview, based on Newtonian mechanics and behaviorist psychology. It is not incompatible with the emerging scientific worldview based upon quantum mechanics, the neurosciences, and cognitive psychology.

    But even before quantum mechanics began to supersede classical mechanics in the 1920s, many physicists were much more open to investigating psi phenomena than most psychologists seem today. An astonishing number of the most prominent physicists of the 19th century expressed interest in psychic research, including: William Crookes, inventor of the cathode ray tube, used today in televisions and computer monitors; J.J. Thomson, who won the Nobel Prize in 1906 for the discovery of the electron; and Lord Rayleigh, considered one of the greatest physicists of the late 19th century, and winner of the Nobel Prize in physics in 1904.

    Of course, for their efforts in investigating these and other unusual phenomena, these men were often criticized and ridiculed mercilessly by their colleagues.

    But modern physics is very different from the classical physics of the 19th century, and it is time the skeptical psychologists realized this. The great psychologist Gardner Murphy, president of the American Psychological Association, and later of the American Society for Psychical Research, urged his fellow psychologists to become better acquainted with modern physics.

    …the difficulty is at the level of physics, not at the level of psychology. Psychologists may be a little bewildered when they encounter modern physicists who take these phenomena in stride, in fact, take them much more seriously than psychologists do, saying, as physicists, that they are no longer bound by the types of Newtonian energy distribution, inverse square laws, etc., with which scientists used to regard themselves as tightly bound…. psychologists probably will witness a period of slow, but definite, erosion of the blandly exclusive attitude that has offered itself as the only appropriate scientific attitude in this field. The data from parapsychology will be almost certainly in harmony with general psychological principles and will be assimilated rather easily within the systematic framework of psychology as a science when once the imagined appropriateness of Newtonian physics is put aside, and modern physics replaces it."===
  10. andy1033 Truth Seeker Valued Senior Member

    I could not give a toss. Personally i know humans will never work out the sun for example, so what good is there intelligent brains. Humans will only work out so much and then they will play little games claiming they know more, but they do not. So therefore science will become a religion, and it already has.

    Humans with there methods of science will only ever get so far.

    To work out the sun, they will never get close. Scientific understanding of the sun, will always just be a faith, so a religion, of scientific dogma.

    Made me laugh with your rubbish dogma called science tried to claim all that al gore rubbish. Nothing like it exists, but most scientists back in 2006-2007 believed totally in it.

    Sums up science, and you will never understand the sun.
  11. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

    The level of dumb just increased exponentially...
  12. andy1033 Truth Seeker Valued Senior Member

    So show me evidence of science going beyond a certain point and staying scientific?

    There is none. Stop pretending that humans know all the answers, as they do not. Science knows it will only get so far, thats why a massive particle accelerator was built under europe was it not. To find something, that is unscientific. They are searching for something thats based on faith, lol

    I just laughed at those al gore science types, whom claimed they understood the world and how it interacted with the sun. Very clever, and imagine humans greatest minds these people were.

    Where is the al gore rubbish only 9 years after its peak, of virtually the whole science community believing in it?

    Al gore rubbish never existed, and never will, and humans will never work out the sun. It must be so disappointing that science will only become a religion, and never work out anything beyond a certain point.
  13. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    hee hee, take all the chemical ingredients of a human being and place them on table A. Get a naked man to sit on Table B and sing a love song.
    Now ask our selves "How compatible is science to the understanding of the difference between items A and item B."?

    Humbling... hey...
    Then question whether science has the capacity to pass judgement on such a complex issue as psychic connectivity between people and other "living things" (love, empathy, telepathy, affinity etc) and even the ability to empirically support such phenomena when faced with the dilemma posed by the first question.
    The testing regime has to be as clever as that which is being tested for and since we have no idea about the answer to question one, we are not even able to guess at how to test for that which we know exists but can not support with evidence due to our naivety.

    Life itself does appear to exist. it is evident, but is there a Physical mechanism to explain it?
    Is life itself a Paranormal activity?

    Ahh I know..

    Is life compatible with Physics or is Physics compatible with life?
    Same question as posed by the OP IMO.
  14. spidergoat pubic diorama Valued Senior Member

    What is this anti-science nonsense? It's not unscientific to build a particle accelerator. In fact it verified experimentally the existence of the theorized Higgs boson. No faith required. Not finding it would have been just as interesting.

    What about global warming? It's more true than ever.
  15. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    "Parapsychologists" are quacks just like the subject matter they "study". Is life a paranormal

    Is life compatible with physics or is physics compatible with life...this is just meaningless drivel.
  16. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    oh how so? Perhaps you mean meaningless to you?

    Can physics explain the phenomena of life at all?
    Yet "life " is clearly evident.
    Is physics compatible with life?

    The definition of paranormal clearly refers to "that which is unexplainable by science."
    Is life explainable by science? nope! Therefore can one conclude that life and living are paranormal activities or not? (in your opinion - please support it)
  17. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    Have you ever considered that some "EMR" (for want of a better term) may only be able to be experienced by organic life forms and is unable to be measured or even detected by non-living measuring devices?
    Perhaps we need an "organic" and living EMR wave receiver? [chuckle]
    I recall seeing at a carnival years ago a fun (fake) "love meter" that indicated according to your thumb being placed on a supposed measuring device... only cost threepence..

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    Last edited: Jan 14, 2015
  18. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Yes, life is explainable by science. Haven't you ever been to a medical doctor?

    The origin of life isn't fully understood yet. Life isn't paranormal and no, I haven't considered that we need an organic "EMR" receiver.

    I think a tinfoil hat with an antenna should suffice.
  19. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    can I quote you?

    science has no idea about how the inanimate becomes self animated...
    you know how to convert a pile of chemicals in to something that breathes sort of thingo...

    so you believe that all EMR (for lack of a better term) has been discovered?
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2015
  20. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    Do you feel that pointing out some of the limitations of the current Physics paradigm is insulting?
  21. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Yes, you can quote just did.

    I don't believe everything has been discovered regardless of what the subject matter is. There is no evidence pointing in the direction that you are going however so you are just making things up at this point and hoping that you will be right about some of it one it's science fiction basically.

    I don't find science fiction insulting but it's not particularly enlightening either.
  22. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    I see your point however isn't all physics "science fiction" to use your terms, until vindicated using the scientific method?
  23. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    It's not physics until it has been validated. The initial hypothesis put up for testing can be anything including a wild ass guess so it doesn't matter where the hypothesis comes from but the important point is that it is something that can be tested (falsified) and that it is tested.

    So far, all testing done in the area you are talking about has failed.

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