Archive for June, 2009

Dean Radin Strikes Again

Posted in Opinion, Science & Spirituality with tags , , , , , , on June 28, 2009 by jackpot12
Believe or I'll kick your ass!

Believe or I'll kick your ass!

When I first read Radin’s “Conscious Universe” I was blown away  by the seemingly overwhelming evidence for psi. I remember my first encounter with Pat being an argument about the significance of these findings. He talked me out of being overly accepting of Radin’s arguments though claiming to be 99% sure we survive physical death himself. An interesting position.

But then there are the die-hard skeptics. Why do so many people refuse to believe? Not being a statistician I can’t tell anything about the data other than the fact that they are largely ignored by very bright people, many of whom I greatly admire.  Is the body of evidence ignored because of bias, or because there really isn’t anything there?

Sam Harris, my most beloved defender of reason has been attacked and ridiculed in the atheist community for being open minded about psi and even evidence for reincarnation. I consider Sam to be one of the clearest thinkers I’ve witnessed. He knows that the skeptic arguments are tinged with unreasonable bias, but does not fully accept the conclusions offered by people like Radin.

Dean is a giant in the field of psi research

Dean is a giant in the field of psi research

After trying to defend the existence of psi for years, partly because it built up my preconceived vision of a spiritual universe, I was left unsatisfied by the evidence. I could never fully convince myself of its existence, and over time I lost interest in the question because I realized that no amount of experimentation was going to solve the question satisfactorily as long as people far more knowledgeable so solidly dismissed it.  Even if I was a statistician and had time to go through the numbers myself, I still wouldn’t know. The sketchy behavior and demeanor of those who claimed these experiences didn’t help convince me either. I would far rather hang out with atheistic scientists and philosophers than spiritualists and your typical NDEer…. even if I KNEW we survived death.

So Dean Radin gave this talk for the people at Google, going through the evidence. There is some interesting new data since I last checked. Apparently Radin’s talk became the most heavily discussed Google talk so far. It would seem that among the younger generation there is less immediate dismissal of such ideas than the older generation. Many in the audience found their heads spinning as they questioned. You could imagine them thinking, “This is such amazing evidence, what is it he’s not telling us, because if it were really this solid everyone would believe it… what is WRONG with this data? There must be something, even if I have no idea what it is.”

I didn’t plan on watching the entire hour and a half. But I did. Credit to Radin for a superb defense of his work.

Imbedding is prohibited, watch here.

Advertisements

My Mormon Experience

Posted in Humor with tags , , , on June 28, 2009 by jackpot12

mooningI had an interesting run-in with a couple of Mormon missionaries recently.

A friend invited me to a barbeque at his girlfriend’s house. The house was built up with a high deck and the living room was fully windowed about 180 degrees above the driveway.

I rung the doorbell, nobody answered so I barged in on a bunch of people I had never seen before and held my six pack of beer up as if it were an admission ticket as i broke into their house. About 5 people stared at me in the kitchen with their tattoos and piercings and hard alcoholic drinks in hand. So, after awkwardly introducing myself I was told my friend was down talking to the Mormons. I walked into the living room and looked out the window to seen him down below hobnobbing with two gangly characters dressed in black and white, tie and windbreaker.

I walked down there and said hello, holding a beer in my hand. My friend was playing with them saying “Ya, I really need a good come to Jesus”, as if somehow he was seriously interested in Mormonism. The Mormon 20 year olds tried DESPERATELY to get him to their church, to save his soul. It was embarrassingly desperate. Then they turned to me, and initiated a profoundly condescending inquiry into the nature of my understanding of their faith, as if to understand what it is, is to believe it automatically. I said “oh I know all about it, there’s no way in a thousand years you could get me to your church”. I didn’t feel like bantering so I just said it outright.

Right then there was a noise from above inside the house. I looked up and there were two enormous bare white asses snugged against the window. My friends girlfriend and another guy had dropped trow to give the Mormons a show. They tried futilely to conceal their embarrassment.

My friend is fond of calling me “doctor”. And when he did in front of the Mormons, one of them looked at me puzzled and said “how did YOU become a doctor?”. There was very little preventing my hand from breaking that kids nose. Very little, except he was so bumblingly stupid it would not have mattered. I said “um, I studied really hard?” I am too non-confrontational, and people like this have nothing to be gained from this sort of confrontation. Their Mormonism is punishment enough.

Team America, *uck Yeah!

Posted in Humor with tags , , on June 20, 2009 by jackpot12

superbama

Si Se Puede, the movie

House (Hugh Laurie) Spoofs Oprah Show

Posted in Humor with tags , , on June 14, 2009 by jackpot12

This British comedy sketch encapsulates the radical narcissism of the American Me society. We are a generation who grew up being told that we were all winners no matter what, and that we should all believe ourselves to be uniquely inclined and special despite every evidence to the contrary.

The Oprah show is a lesson in incongruence. Mondays and Wednesdays are about how the beauty on the inside counts. The other days are about makeovers, the doting over gorgeous celebs, anti-scientific health solutions etc…
super_oprah_woo35
oprah20no20makeup21-1

The Warrior Gene- Created Sick Commanded to be Well

Posted in Opinion, Science & Spirituality with tags , , , , , on June 6, 2009 by jackpot12

enlightenmentI was forced by my karma, perhaps my bad karma, to pick up the latest edition of “EnlightenNext” magazine (formerly WIE, but populated with the same fantasists and evolutionary mythologist writers).

My $7.50 will pay for Ken Wilber’s next blow job in a massage parlor in Thailand. Or around the bathroom corner of the next conference with the 20 year old yoga instructor . Enjoy.

The people at EnlightenNext are absolutely obsessed with Charles Darwin. Each edition has his portrait copiously sprinkled throughout its pornographic pages, and the book review section is called “Natural Selection”.

I only wish that Dick Dawkins could make a guest appearance at the Cohen compound to explain to these people the stone cold facts about what we know concerning evolution.

Perhaps he could start by discussing the MAOA gene, known as a ‘low-activity 3-repeat allele,’ also known as “The Warrior Gene”.

Boys with this gene, according to a new study are more likely to join gangs, be among the more violent members, and wield weapons.

How do Wilber and Cohen come to grips with these facts?

Why are some people born with the warrior gene or with two short serotinin uptake inhibiting genes making them prone to depression? Why? Why can I flip through this magazine and come away thinking that we are all tabula rasas?

Is it possible to meditate with these gene cocktails?

I suspect that in the future there will be entire maps of genes correlated well with behavior likelihoods. When this time comes the Wilberites may have a rude awakening. Perhaps they can define certain genetic clusters which make any spiritual proficiency impossible, and some that make spiritual masters.

Who will they consider more spiritually evolved? Those with bad genes who aren’t criminals or those with good genes who are average?

A Pain in the Neck

Posted in Opinion, Pseudosciences with tags , , , , , on June 4, 2009 by jackpot12

b5a78a620777adc0 One of the things that struck me when I was a Chiropractor was how many people would come up to me during various advertising fairs and say, “My Chiropractor hurt me, I don’t want any of those forceful thrusting type adjustments again.”

They never made a whole lot of sense to me either, which is why I decided about half way through my training to abandon them in favor of the non-force techniques. What I found was that the non-force techniques made even less sense, (in fact none at all) and were 100% placebo just like homeopathy.  It took me another two years to pull my head far enough out of my ass to start looking for a new career.

If selling a placebo effect is something you can stomach and feel okay with, then this is for you.if you have a heart that trumps your interest in truth, you’re golden. I’m deeply jealous of these people.

It was never okay for me. Most of my friends never encountered this conundrum because most of them never took seriously the idea that (verified by all respectable research) the placebo effect is the primary agent of all these techniques- the golden thread that makes them all similar, despite their differences. The real reason it works.

When I brought up my thoughts to my peers they would say, “but its way better than medicine, medicine kills people”, or they would say something that revealed the fact that they did not believe such and such technique worked due to the power of belief and suggestion. To this day I am baffled by how many intelligent people, trained professionals, still underestimate the influence of the mind in these obscure healing arts practices, chalking up the benefits to some pseudomechanical explanation with not a shred of evidence to back it. With every new study showing that homeopathy does absolutely nothing at all different from a placebo for instance… the more popular it becomes.

In the short span of time I was in practice I remember patients who came to me because they did not like the forceful style of their other Chiropractor, but they were sold on the whole idea of Chiropractic, a hope giving alternative to chemical intervention. I remember this one very healthy and intelligent professional woman who came in and told me that her neck involuntarily jiggled now after getting adjustments from her last Chiropractor, a guy I knew. This did not happen before the adjustments.

The involuntary wiggling is caused by damaged mechanoreceptors in the spinal joints sending screwed up information to the brain about the joint’s location in time and space. The brain randomly wiggles the neck because it cannot get an accurate read on where the joint is positioned, much like vertigo (and something called “cervicogenic vertigo” is caused by the same thing).

Do you think she ever told him?

Of course not. And all the people at the fairs that gave me similar stories, did they tell anyone? No, just me because they knew I didn’t like it either.

I don’t receive spinal manipulations anymore, but when I visited a friend from school last year, he offered to crack me (I refuse to use the word “adjust” because there is nothing being adjusted, only manipulated outside of its natural range of motion). I submitted hesitantly and was extremely sore for the next three days.

Do you think I told him?

Of course not.

As he talked to me about how it bothered him when some of his patients would suddenly quit their regimen of manipulations, I felt it was obvious why many of them do. But they don’t tell the truth to him about why they quit.

A look at the research supports my experience.

For further information about my experiences with Chiropractic see

My Story

Boy Chosen by Dalai Lama Wants to Get Laid Not Worshipped

Posted in Humor with tags , , , , on June 3, 2009 by jackpot12

Dalai_LamaAnimal tricks gods in Bardo realm, reincarnates as high ranking liberated monastic.

In an unprecedented feat of defiance against The White Father, a cunning Llama forced a transcription error in the Akashic records and was incarnated into the life of the Lama -Osel Hita Torres, chosen personally by the Dalai Lama as the reincarnation of a famed and highly evolved spiritual teacher.

“They took me away from my family and stuck me in a medieval situation in which I suffered a great deal,” stated Torres, who also claims to possess amazing past life memories of eating hay and sifting through mounds of shit for regurgitated food.

“It took my first twenty years in this life just getting used to bipedal walking. I think the Dalai Lama was impressed by my non-verbal demeanor and my apparent sense of disinterest in my fellow man. I guess he mistook this for the characteristics of a highly evolved prick”.

It is still unclear in the Tibetan Bhuddist hierarchy whether Mr. Torres will be allowed to skip several lower primate lifetimes and reincarnate in his next life as a man, or if he will have to trod the long arduous assent into the more highly evolved bipedal ape species one murderous, pitiful, violent and pointless step at a time.

“I love being human,” Says Torres, briefly forgetting to put his tongue back inside his lips and slowly wagging his head back and forth. “I sit around all day and people feed me. I wish I wasn’t chosen to be a monk though. But because I tampered with the Akashic records, my destiny as a Lama was sealed due only to a single letter change.”

“I think being human is closer to God than being a Llama”, says Osel, staring out over a mountainous cliff, watching his icy breath dissipate to be one with everything around him. “Recently I have been reading the Bible and I am thinking about converting to Christianity”.

Osel seems to be undaunted by the switching of religions and how this will affect His Holiness.

“being human is great, why should I care what turtle face wants? I can piss and shit on anything I want and my quest for dick, pussy, status, power and the nepotistic protection of my offspring and family are easily concealed by my extraordinary  newfound sense of self-deception and interpersonal manipulation.” He smiles widely and guffaws with his necked crooned skyward. The laugh seems like an involuntary eruption of mirth. “I couldn’t ever get away with that shit before!”

According to “The Guardian” newspaper, “At six, he was allowed to socialise only with other reincarnated souls – though for a time he said he lived next to the actor Richard Gere’s cabin.”

“Richard was just so much cooler and more…evolved than everyone else there. As I got older I realized the difference- that sly smirk of his, the way he never got bored or looked unmotivated. That bitch was getting laid!”

It wasn’t long before Torres enrolled in film school, where he explores his obsession with bestiality.

“I think there are many others just like me. This is their first incarnation as human and they don’t know how to function in society. Many become CEOs and wealthy entrepreneurs, just mindlessly fucking up anything and everything in their path for personal gain.”