What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Wed Jan 27, 2010 1:32 pm

If we keep our shit up, we're going to be extinct way soon.

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by sacrificialgoddess on Wed Jan 27, 2010 2:49 pm

P_Synthesis wrote:
gillyflower wrote:Yes, I read it. It isn't proof.

Yes I know, I said as much -- why keep mentioning it? It isn't UPG though. It's circumstantial evidence.


I can't see how you are differenciating at this stage.

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by P_Synthesis on Wed Jan 27, 2010 5:02 pm

Hmm... okay one more time, and this time if it doesn't work, I will shut up for now -- there will probably be ample time to approach this subject from another angle on another thread down the road.

So I will reply to:

gillyflower wrote:It's all personal verification, PS and that's the point you seem to be missing. You are using the hypotheses going in and out of fashion as proof that your hypotheses may be correct. I am using the same example to show that none of them may be correct.

Plus

sacrificialgoddess wrote:

It isn't UPG though. It's circumstantial evidence.
I can't see how you are differenciating at this stage.

OK I will try. It's weird because to me this is very very obvious and I can't avoid the sense I must be explaining myself very poorly...

This thread actually came into my meditation this evening (go with me here) and I realized why I might see things differently from some.

Remember that I don't have a religion or tradition exactly -- I started out by trying out techniques, and that's basically all I've ever done. A person would say -- try this, you will (for example) feel energy moving through your body in a certain way. And when I tried it, if I felt the energy, that would be confirmation that the person had told the truth about the technique, whereas if I did not, that would mean the I could not confirm for myself that what the person said was true.

From this I was able to draw certain conclusions, for example, that it was at least possible for someone else to get the same effect by doing the same exercise. In other words, the sum of my personal knowledge had increased by confirming the technique as successful. I could 'prove' nothing -- but from my sensations and their effects, I knew more than I had before. This happened repeatedly and over time I came to dismiss some things as false and experienced others true; of course, the stronger and more unmistakable the experience, the greater the belief.

The idea of 'proof' can easily get a hold of one's mind in this situation to the point where one misses the fact that a thing can be true without having been proven. For example, there is no scientific proof that the energy exercises I did work, or that the energy even exists. But I don't need the proof personally, having tried it out and found that it does work, at least on me, which means at least some of the time.


As an example, I'm just reading this very nice book called Rituals of Healing, which is about visualizations for healing illness. The three authors have worked at length in practice and they have some experience that people can be healed by these methods, even of some grave diseases like cancer -- but there is of course no proof. Some preliminary and promising work is being done, but there is no proof.

Now this is what I'm saying:

1. This book won the American Journal of Nursing "Book of the Year" award. A lot of nurses found it helpful, and presumably that was because their patients' lives were improved by the methods in some way at least some of the time. There is no proof that it happened -- just case studies. However: let us suppose you are an individual patient who actually did feel a benefit from what was done, and doctors and nurses agree you are improving, likely because of what is done. Do you as an individual patient need more proof than that, to persuade you the technique is useful? If you are actually well, you are actually well. There is a real effect. It is verifiable. That's not enough for you to say scientifically that it has been proven to work -- but it's enough for you to be healthy.

2. Conversely, no matter how much a remedy has been proven to work, if it does not work on the experiential level, it doesn't work. This suggests that it is actually experience which is the final arbiter in the case of illness, not statistics. It is similar to the energy technique -- I'm not going to continue using it if it doesn't work.

3. Dot's energy thing is similar -- she is feeling a useful effect. Supposing she or her husband were able to teach others how to have that effect, they could verify it for themselves to some extent -- they certainly could not say it was universally true, nor that they had 'proved it'. But if the exact same method produces the same effect in them, they have verified it circumstantially. If the effect was very strong it might of course be verified by an observer or temperature changes measured and so on, but it doesn't need to be in order to be useful, interesting, and most of all, repeatable.

I ought to reply to some other points but haven't got time!

PS gilly I never said there was privilege, that's TED right? Correct me if I'm wrong...

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by gillyflower on Wed Jan 27, 2010 5:42 pm

sacrificialgoddess wrote:
P_Synthesis wrote:
gillyflower wrote:Yes, I read it. It isn't proof.

Yes I know, I said as much -- why keep mentioning it? It isn't UPG though. It's circumstantial evidence.


I can't see how you are differenciating at this stage.

Ah, UPG - it isn't verifiable.

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by gillyflower on Wed Jan 27, 2010 5:47 pm

Okay, then I had energy work done on me, felt nothing received no benefit so therefore you are saying, PS, that I should feel that it is all bunk? So you think it should be universal to me at this point? It's bunk and it's not useful.

Why could it not be useful perhaps, if the people believed in it, and not useful to people who do not believe in it and therefore don't expect results. Why couldn't it be people's minds that are affected rather than bodies?

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by DotNotInOz on Wed Jan 27, 2010 6:31 pm

gillyflower wrote:Experience may make one person believe. That doesn't mean that it is true. The next person may experience the same thing and understand it in a different way.

To use your examples:

1. Dot hears that energy warms.
2. Dot believes that energy has warmed her feet.

That doesn't make that what really happened. It is just now something she believes happened.

The same for John. It may be personal verification (ie. he had an experience that he interprets as meeting a Valkyrie), but it won't be verification for anyone else. Another person may interpret the exact same experience very differently.

Exactly. We're not dealing with anything resembling what is ordinarily considered verification in either instance.

Yes, I feel warmer. However, I'm not at all certain that my feet actually get demonstrably warmer. I've never held a thermometer to my feet beforehand, made a record of the temperature, then had hubby do his energy thingy and tested my feet with the thermometer again to see if there has been an increase in the temperature.

This could merely be the result of power of suggestion, too, as well as vested interest on my part in his succeeding to the point that I'm willing to ignore the fact that my feet aren't dramatically warmer. I may simply have experienced a release of endorphins as a result of having gotten attention that leads me to conclude that I feel warmer. Or that rush of endorphins may trigger other aspects of body chemistry that increase blood circulation to my feet....Who knows?

John's experience is similarly nebulous. There could be any number of explanations other than the one that John applied to this situation. We really can't know since there's no way to determine precisely what John sensed.
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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by P_Synthesis on Wed Jan 27, 2010 6:39 pm

Okay, then I had energy work done on me, felt nothing received no benefit so therefore you are saying, PS, that I should feel that it is all bunk? So you think it should be universal to me at this point? It's bunk and it's not useful.
You can believe what you like!

Why could it not be useful perhaps, if the people believed in it, and not useful to people who do not believe in it and therefore don't expect results.
In the case of the examples given, because I myself did not believe one way or the other until I experienced the results. Some turned out false, others true, but I never wanted them to be false, and I never had faith before experimenting.
Why couldn't it be people's minds that are affected rather than bodies?
In the case of healing from cancer?

But you're not actually getting what I'm saying... How about we do it another way... Do you, gilly, remember a dream from recently, and can you name one thing (eg. an object, place, person or event) from that dream that you are ok to share?

EDIT: This should show Dot what I mean by 'verification' too.

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by sacrificialgoddess on Wed Jan 27, 2010 9:29 pm

gillyflower wrote:
sacrificialgoddess wrote:
P_Synthesis wrote:
gillyflower wrote:Yes, I read it. It isn't proof.

Yes I know, I said as much -- why keep mentioning it? It isn't UPG though. It's circumstantial evidence.


I can't see how you are differenciating at this stage.

Ah, UPG - it isn't verifiable.

Yes, Gilly, but I can't see how any of this is verifiable beyond personal testimony. We can see what people say, but beyond that...

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by gillyflower on Wed Jan 27, 2010 10:37 pm

Sure. Cat pee on a rug. I remember that from a recent dream.

I thought about what you mean at work and all I can come up with is that you would like psuedoscience more widely accepted? I don't wish to be mean, if you object to the word, but if it lacks scientific methodology to prove it, it isn't science.

Pseudoscience is a methodology, belief, or practice that is claimed to be scientific, or that is made to appear to be scientific, but which does not adhere to an appropriate scientific methodology,[1][2][3][4] lacks supporting evidence or plausibility,[5] or otherwise lacks scientific status. (Wikipedia)

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by P_Synthesis on Thu Jan 28, 2010 7:47 am

I don't wish to be mean, if you object to the word, but if it lacks scientific methodology to prove it, it isn't science.

... when did I say it was science? Bear me with me.

OK, cat pee on a rug. So I have to ask this just because the argument hinges on this: are you absolutely sure and certain that you dreamed of cat pee on a rug?

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by gillyflower on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:14 am

Nope, it might be something I was thinking about, misremember or a bunch of other things. Why?

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by P_Synthesis on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:21 am

Because it's important we pick something you know to be true.

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by gillyflower on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:27 am

That's the thing PS. When it comes to the mind, what is true? Anyone who has lived for a while on this planet knows that the mind and memory doesn't do "true." It is rather an odd thing. How many people have you known that swore thus and such happened and then been very surprised to have others correct them about it?

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by P_Synthesis on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:32 am

Well ok, you are in the extreme skeptic position at this point. I hope you are not doing it just in order not to agree! But we can find that out easily enough: the thing you posted on the other thread about your dog in the bath -- are you absolutely positive that is true? Or might it be false?

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by gillyflower on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:34 am

I think it's true, now especially that not so much time has passed! Let me ask you a question in return: Have you ever had the experience of remembering something and then not being certain whether you dreamed it or it really happened?

Ed to add: are you a dad? I mean, if you've dealt with children and I have, you hear them confuse reality and dreams and wishful thinking all the time. Adults think they are better at it, but in my opinion not so much.

I've thought of why I don't think much of people's memories - at the library nearly every day, we have people who swear one of us has helped them the day before or whenever and they are wrong, they think it is the wrong person. We laugh and say all white people look alike - men and women - and visa versa with the races, but often they have confused male and female and colors, too. And don't get me started about books they think they remember!


Last edited by gillyflower on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:54 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by P_Synthesis on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:42 am

Oh yes I have certainly had that experience, and there are many other ways to confuse 'the channel which the thing came in by', eg. is it an OBE or did I dream it was an OBE, etc.

This is not, however, related to what I am saying.

The question I am trying to avoid asking you gilly, because it is opening up the philosophical 'correspondence theory of truth' and therewith an argument that would be many pages, is, when you say:

I think it's true

... how do you know that's what you think?

But you know what I still think we can avoid all that... we can even use a phrase like 'true to the best of my knowledge', and we can rank our sureness in from 1 to 10... all totally unnecessary from my point of view, but if you insist.

For example, when you are reading this you are looking at your computer screen. Would you say this is true?

EDIT no I'm not a dad, but I know what you mean

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:47 am

*puts on old Irish lady accent*

I told ya this was a messy messy can of worms you were openin', I told ya, yes I did.

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by P_Synthesis on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:55 am

lol

I still say we could avoid it pretty easily, but you know what I honour the argument itself, I guess it's one I know quite well in a certain way but I've never had it on a forum before. I am definitely learning here and what more could you ask.

I told ya this was a messy messy can of worms you were openin', I told ya, yes I did.

Well I never did listen and now there will be a reckoning so there will.

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by sacrificialgoddess on Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:57 am

This is why I say it is all UPG.

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by gillyflower on Thu Jan 28, 2010 9:03 am

Yep, UPG sums up life quite well. Smile

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by P_Synthesis on Thu Jan 28, 2010 9:05 am

I believe I can certainly demonstrate that 'UPG' is not quite the end of the story.

gilly ahem my question stands:


For example, when you are reading this you are looking at your computer screen. Would you say this is true?

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by gillyflower on Thu Jan 28, 2010 9:09 am

P_Synthesis wrote:Oh yes I have certainly had that experience, and there are many other ways to confuse 'the channel which the thing came in by', eg. is it an OBE or did I dream it was an OBE, etc.

This is not, however, related to what I am saying.

The question I am trying to avoid asking you gilly, because it is opening up the philosophical 'correspondence theory of truth' and therewith an argument that would be many pages, is, when you say:

I think it's true

... how do you know that's what you think?

But you know what I still think we can avoid all that... we can even use a phrase like 'true to the best of my knowledge', and we can rank our sureness in from 1 to 10... all totally unnecessary from my point of view, but if you insist.

For example, when you are reading this you are looking at your computer screen. Would you say this is true?

EDIT no I'm not a dad, but I know what you mean

I live my life trusting that what I think I see is something that is real but I am aware that I could be dreaming it or that I could be dreamed by someone and I am ready to readjust my thinking at any time on what is actually going on. I believe that reality is individual. Just because, with my flawed perception, I believe something, that doesn't make it "true."

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Thu Jan 28, 2010 9:11 am

sacrificialgoddess wrote:This is why I say it is all UPG.

Gilly is the last person I want to go through the belief merry-go-round with, aside from the lady PalmTree.

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by P_Synthesis on Thu Jan 28, 2010 9:20 am

Just because, with my flawed perception, I believe something, that doesn't make it "true."

OK, finally! We'll go with that, and I will match it up with the less-skeptical position later on.

Let's just establish that this is the case:

You believe you are looking at a screen right now, although you have no way to be absolutely sure? In other words, it seems as real as anything else does in this life, but there is no way to measure how real that might be on some absolute scale?

(Please note I am not asking you how you know you believe you are looking at a screen; the point is, it is something you know you believe.)

EDIT: I have to dash now, hope to be back on later...

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Re: What do New Thought followers do by way of practice?

Post by gillyflower on Thu Jan 28, 2010 1:28 pm

TigersEyeDowsing wrote:
sacrificialgoddess wrote:This is why I say it is all UPG.

Gilly is the last person I want to go through the belief merry-go-round with, aside from the lady PalmTree.

LOL

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