Welcome


Thank you for visiting our new forum! To start posting again please follow the link below to create a new password. First time forum users please follow the link to register. CFI thanks you for continuing the discussion on evidence-based thinking and humanist values.

Advocatus


  • Even so, we’re always up for an interesting conversation.  If you glance down at the “Paranormal” section, you’ll see we have a few topics on UFOs.  Feel free to add your thoughts.

  • I agree that the Nimitz incident seems totally puzzling.  I have a hard time believing that the Navy has super-advanced technology that they would be testing out there without telling their own pilots about it.  I also have a hard time believing that a Navy officer would cooperate with some civilian making a documentary about the incident (15 y…[Read more]

  • Back when I was making the transition from agnostic to full-fledged atheist (which is just a state of mind really), I used to worry about this.  What if, without meaning to, I had closed my mind to the evidence for God’s existence? What if I had hardened my heart too much?  But then I reasoned this way — even if I was no longer sure what it w…[Read more]

  • I think LoisL is absolutely right.  Trumpkushka’s supporters would LOVE it if he was impeached.  It would prove how “desperate” his enemies are to stop him from “fixing the country”.  I think that’s the main reason Ms. Pelosi is soft-pedaling that idea.

  • Sherlock Holmes wrote: “The example does not allow you to conclude that every “thing” exists because of a preceding “more complex thing” it doesn’t lead to that nor did I say that.”

    Yes you did.  I was sitting right here.  You were so eager to prove that Lausten and I were “wrong” about something that rather than simply point out the slight ambi…[Read more]

  • Don’t let Player bother you, Xain.  Most of us have learned by now to ignore 80% of what he says, and take the rest with a grain of salt.

    This idea reminds me of a beautiful story by Borges, “Tlon Uqbar Orbis Tertius”.  It’s about a totally fictional planet that was invented by a group of scholars.  The language of Tlon was said to have no no…[Read more]

  • Congratulations, Sherlock!  You’ve just landed yourself in the Infinite Recursion Trap!  Where did God come from, Dad?  “Well, son, if we follow Sherlock Holmes’ sterling logic, God must have been created by an even more intelligent creator.”

  • Talking about the video you mentioned, my reaction is that it looks like a hoax.  The blobs of light look semi-transparent and just judging from the way they move, they move like camera artifacts.  I’m not an expert in optics though.  That’s just my gut reaction.

  • Sherlock Holmes wrote: “If it’s OK to posit that the laws of physics gave rise to the universe without knowing where the laws came from why is it not OK to posit a non-material creative agency without knowing where that came from?
    Can you really not see the fallacies in your position here?”

    It’s not a fallacy at all.  In the one case, you are si…[Read more]

  • Indeed it is more complex than that.  When we see an image that brings us pleasure, it’s not so much the image as the chain of associations that the image triggers in your brain.  And this chain of associations depends upon the context, the way you’re already feeling, whether or not you’re in a receptive mood, a myriad of other things.  For th…[Read more]

  • I think that creativity is largely a matter of practice and a matter of habit.  People get random ideas all the time, but usually they’re too busy to pursue it as more than an idle fantasy.   Creative people have a habit of acting on those ideas, chasing them, developing them in more detail, writing them down, filing them away for future r…[Read more]

  • Advocatus replied to the topic UFOs in the forum Pseudoscience and the Paranormal 2 months ago

    I also believe that eyewitnesses are telling the truth — as far as it goes.  But ask yourself — if the object is really making such incredible maneuvers that defy the laws of physics, how can mere human eyes be judging the speed that accurately?   I’m thinking of the Gorman case back in the 50’s, where a military pilot was chasing a UFO, and h…[Read more]

  • Personally I tend to agree with Mr. Holmes.  People are very good at compartmentalizing their beliefs.  Sir Isaac Newton could work out the principles of optics and develop the theory of universal gravitation with one hand, while messing around with alchemy and calculating the exact date of the Apocalypse with the other.  For the same reason, I ca…[Read more]

  • First I want to say that there was a time when the History channel was pretty reliable as far as history was concerned.  But in recent years they’ve gone overboard with the paranormal stuff.  Those programs are rarely balanced, giving the skeptical side of the story or even acknowledging that there is a skeptical side.  Some programs, like “H…[Read more]

  • Show a person a random inkblot, and he’s going to bend over backwards to see a human face in it, or a human figure of some kind.  It’s the way our brains are put together.  When see an ambiguous stimulus, we automatically try to impose some kind of order onto it.  Human beings have a remarkable gift for imagination in that regard, and it do…[Read more]

  • Advocatus, that stinks.  How’s it working out?
    Yes, moderation is a very fluffy term.  But than I’ve found soft boundaries more realistic that hard fast rules, specially when it comes diets and fitness.

    Just getting started really.  That’s the reason you haven’t seen me around the last two weeks — I was in the hospital.  It’s a pain having…[Read more]

  • I think that most of them are common or not so common aerial phenomena which the viewer misinterprets because of unfamiliarity or simply because deep down he “wants” to see an alien spacecraft.  For example, Kenneth Arnold’s original description of his famous sighting — a formation of crescent shaped metallic objects (not saucers), which seemed…[Read more]

  • Another option would be are they are seeing something at the limits of perception, out the corner of the eye, or in a dimly lit room, and they are simply misinterpreting what they are seeing because they have an emotionally charged reason for wanting to see something.  How can you “know” that a disembodied presence making a chair rock is one of…[Read more]

  • Just when I had thoroughly gotten used to low-sugar diet, I had congestive heart failure.  Now I’ve got to get used to a virtually salt-free diet.

  • “Life After People” was one of my favorite series on the History Channel.  I wish they’d do more things like that and keep beating the UFO dead horse.

    It so happens I plead guilty to a fan fiction story about a planet which was in the middle of an environmental crisis just like this, and they frittered around until it was too late to do anything…[Read more]

  • Load More