Re: A pretty interesting article found on the web
The parts of the actual story that really stood out for me are;
- Then, as now, he was placed under the care of Dr Sudhir Shah, a consultant neurologist from Ahmedabad who specializes in studying people with seemingly ‘supernatural’ powers.
- Sanal Edamaruku, the association’s secretary general, told the Mail: ‘I asked to be allowed to send an independent team to survey the room where this test is taking place, but I was repeatedly turned down.
- Dr Shah has been in charge of three similar investigations over the past ten years, and he has never allowed independent verification.
- This particular hospital, led by this particular doctor, keeps on making these claims without ever producing evidence or publishing research.
- ...whenever the Rationalist Association has investigated individuals making similar claims, all have been exposed as frauds.
- In 1999, they investigated a woman who claimed that she was the reincarnation of another Hindu goddess. For five years, she had remained alone in a small closet where it was claimed she had not eaten nor passed any urine or feces.
In co-operation with the police, investigators from the association searched the room, finding a toilet hidden behind a shelf and a disguised hole through which she received food. Blood tests revealed the presence of glucose, indicating the intake of food.
To further prove the case, a gas was released into the room that made the woman vomit. The contents of her stomach were found to include pieces of recently-eaten chapatti and potatoes.
- These claims are very dangerous, because people try to follow these holy men and can end up hurting themselves.
(Italics where spelling errors have been corrected)
So it doesn't really matter whether the guys claims are true or not, no independent verification of research methods is available. The researchers could just as easily be lying about it.
In other words, the story is not reliable.
But what Really takes the cake is that the article ends with this load of utter and complete rubbish;
"We may never know the truth, but until he is exposed as a fraud, perhaps we should enjoy suspending our disbelief and give Mr Jani the benefit of the doubt.
After all, wouldn’t life be boring if everything was rational?"
I can not write enough expletives to express what a load of nonsense this quote is in my ears.
Rationality is not innately boring.
Disbelief should not be suspended when no solid evidence is offered.
And Giving the cretinous, hoax orchestrating, lying bastards of the world the "benefit of the doubt" is the quickest way to be scammed out of your life savings for some "miracle cure" for ailments or any sort of suffering.
This is the sentiment that scam artists around the world depend on when they promise to cure you of cancer if only you pay them for the hard work that goes into their fucking magyckal practiced.
Suspending disbelief is all that it takes.
My problem may not be as grave as aids or cancer, but as a person with fibro, I am offered a miracle cure at least once a month. More often if I'm an active member of a fibro community.
I watch other, intelligent, rational people, with fibro, give in to the promise of relief and buying yet another placebo at a trumped up price come back with the report of "I'm sorry I said it was helping, I thought it was helping, and now I feel stupid".
Telling people to suspend disbelief because "rationality is boring" is FUCKING STUPID and dangerous!
(Yeah, this time I'm actually a little bit angry, outraged even. I have utter loathing for the scam-artist profession that the suggestion caters to!)
"Those who can't approach discussion with a basic level of intelligence and maturity shouldn't expect to be taken seriously." ~ Qualia Soup