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Afro7hundr
01-04-2011, 12:44 PM
For the past two years, I've been following this Spirituality church for one reason, and one reason only.

The messages I've seen given by the mediums were, I thought, foolproof evidence of life after death; messages of a vividly specific quality that cold reading tactics could never hope to produce.

Well, for me, the proof isn't so ironclad anymore.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0iBwhgbFvnw&feature=related

05:20


This, looks ALARMINGLY similar. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that he procures better results than what I've seen the mediums do.

Now, these messages are, as I've said, the only reason I have to even begin believing in this. If such results are reproducible under fraudulent means, then I really have no reason to believe that what mediums do are the real deal.

Let me whittle it down to one, simple question. Between the illusionists and the mediums, how can I be sure what is true?

Enya
01-04-2011, 01:24 PM
Look at it this way - I've seen prints of animal paintings which are so realistic and detailed, I'd swear they were photos. Even when I know they're not, a tiny part of me is unconvinced. Then I touch the fur of a living animal, feel it breathe... and I know it's real.

An illusionist can re-create just about anything. Doesn't mean it's real. The very fact that better results are given to me, proves the mediums right - surely if they were carrying out a fraud, they'd make it a better one! :wink:

As a medium, I know people can think I'm cold-reading, hot-reading, blah de blah... My thought is - why, I'm flattered you think I'm so clever, because really, I can't do all that!! :D I can barely remember what happened last week!
So - if it's not illusion, then it must be something else. Gosh, what if it's real?? :cool:

clovelly
01-04-2011, 02:05 PM
For the past two years, I've been following this Spirituality church for one reason, and one reason only.

The messages I've seen given by the mediums were, I thought, foolproof evidence of life after death; messages of a vividly specific quality that cold reading tactics could never hope to produce.

Well, for me, the proof isn't so ironclad anymore.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0iBwhgbFvnw&feature=related

05:20


This, looks ALARMINGLY similar. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that he procures better results than what I've seen the mediums do.

Now, these messages are, as I've said, the only reason I have to even begin believing in this. If such results are reproducible under fraudulent means, then I really have no reason to believe that what mediums do are the real deal.

Let me whittle it down to one, simple question. Between the illusionists and the mediums, how can I be sure what is true?

Whether these peoples acts were authentic or not is not important. It was the messages they gave that is important and resonates with you.

Many people are always quoting character lines from Star Trek & The Simpsons for inspiration & incite, and who's to say the writers of these shows didn't channel the scripts. :D

Afro7hundr
01-04-2011, 05:46 PM
I'll admit, I haven't been thinking about this with a very... eh, spiritual mindset; rather, one that demands comparisons and facts, fostered mostly by James Randi and Lamar Keene.

Unfortunately, I haven't had the experience of a medium describing in detail a passed loved one since, well, I don't really know any, but I have been given a few personal tidbits that have indeed resonated within me.

Hell, my parents had no less than five precognitive messages that came true the last two years, one of which given during their first day at the church as random walk-ins.

Yet, after watching this illusionist and reading what the skeptics have to say... lately, I feel like I'm looking two evidential yet contrasting possible fates lying beyond the veil of death.

Either a vast ethereal intelligence of love and cookies, or an existence that is anything but existent. The latter has been causing me no shortage of anxiety...


I like what you're saying, Enya. The mediums at my church hardly seem to be showboating mentalists who perfected the art of cold reading just for the sake of spreading peace and love.

Just as well, clovelly, I've seen the mediums at my church produce detailed results for the congregation time and again. I've only seen this illusionist once. Whose to say the whole thing isn't actually a one-time rigged show, audience and all?...

Then again, that's what the skeptics are saying about the mediums. The whole argument really is a whirlpool of circular points that leads everyone nowhere.

It's worry that has me searching for a definitive truth. I don't want to be missing some sort of crucial detail, somewhere.

This is, after all, a rather extraordinary study.

paulrosk
26-04-2011, 04:35 PM
I'm a Magician/Illusionist and I can make you believe just about anything!
Harry Houdini spent years debunking mediums. James Randi has a $1,000,000 check ready for anyone that can scientifically prove it. So far he still has the check!

mac
26-04-2011, 08:48 PM
As a regular visitor and contributor to this forum and certain others I wonder what knowledge members feel they have about Spiritualism when they write what they do. (this is the Spiritualism forum by the way)

Do any of you know what a medium is? Please share what you believe...

I know what an illusionist is - it's someone who creates illusion. It doesn't cause me to believe anything because I know it's an illusion, a stunt, a trick. I don't know how it's carried out but I don't believe the illusion is real just because I don't know how it's done....

Harry Houdini was a brilliant escapologist, performer, stunt artist, magician but he didn't spend years debunking mediums - he may have spent time debunking fraudsters masquerading as mediums but that's not the same.

Or did you think it is?

Wyrdsmith
27-04-2011, 10:56 AM
For the past two years, I've been following this Spirituality church for one reason, and one reason only.

The messages I've seen given by the mediums were, I thought, foolproof evidence of life after death; messages of a vividly specific quality that cold reading tactics could never hope to produce.

Well, for me, the proof isn't so ironclad anymore.


This, looks ALARMINGLY similar. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that he procures better results than what I've seen the mediums do.

Now, these messages are, as I've said, the only reason I have to even begin believing in this. If such results are reproducible under fraudulent means, then I really have no reason to believe that what mediums do are the real deal.

Let me whittle it down to one, simple question. Between the illusionists and the mediums, how can I be sure what is true?

Was this video Derren Brown Investigates with Joe Power as the medium?

mac
27-04-2011, 11:19 AM
"Between the illusionists and the mediums, how can I be sure what is true?"

Just in case you're still around. I've nothing much to do so let's go with your original question.

A 'medium' - let's be precise here, an 'evidential medium' - will do her/his best to provide evidence that the communicator they are linking with is someone you know or are associated with.

A psychic can't do that and may simply 'read' from your own aura details you already know. If then she/he feeds them back it's not a message from a loved one etc. and is simply information learned from yourself. See the difference?

Sadly some psychics masquerade as evidential mediums and that's where illusion may enter the picture and good illusionists can deceive anyone inexperienced - much less likely to happen when the sitter understands what's happening vs. what should happen. :wink:

Now....there's no making any spirit-person come to speak to you as the 'sitter'. If they come it's their choice. If then they choose to try to make their presence known it's up to the medium to assist as best she/he can.

Doesn't automatically mean there will be success but at its best it can be amazing. At its worst it can be frustrating. But at least it's a genuine attempt although such occasions may be the most frustrating of all.

Someone identified but unable to get through a good message. A sitter trying to match the details to what they know but finding it hard because they may not have all the information or can't think of it quickly enough. A medium busting a gut to get the message accurate but with a link that's simply not providing the desired outcomes....So,Afro7hundr with your strange username, and anyone else watching, evidential mediumship ain't as easy as we'd hope but neither is it necessarily an illusionist's trick.

Charlatans, deceivers can be found in all walks of life - never give a sucker an even break is the principle on which they work. They're the ones you need to watch out for.

True illusionists are there for our entertainment - enjoy!

Afro7hundr
02-05-2011, 09:21 AM
James Randi has a $1,000,000 check ready for anyone that can scientifically prove it. So far he still has the check!

Demonstrating the evidence of absence? Not sure if I'm convinced.

From what I've heard of the test, only the famous can participate. And from what I've heard of mediumship, the practice is not always 100% reliable.

Why would that cool million be left unclaimed? What if the day a famous medium undergoes the challenge happens to be his off day? Or maybe the info they're receiving is too vague, and deemed unconvincing?

Test failed, medium "debunked", reputation ruined forever... and knowing Randi, he wouldn't rest before his quarry is slandered and crucified, shown to all as another conquest of his crusade.

A possible reason, and hardly without sense; the challenge doesn't really forward or debunk anything.


Wyrde, I'm not sure what show that excerpt was from. The entire video was a hodgepodge of different sources.


Mac, I know what you're saying. I've seen mediums firsthand relay the impossible; powerful evidence in their favor. Fakers can put on a good act, but being tasked with giving specific information not only unlikely but impossible to guess/research might just be an act that's too good for conmen to follow.

But it's an act I've seen multiple times, and it speaks a hell of a lot louder than a cynic's dubious challenge.