Mod+ Reality vs Scientific Materialism

#1
On another forum, someone who is trying to understand the evidence from NDEs expressed stupefaction about how there could be such compelling evidence of the afterlife based on NDEs yet the scientific establishment does not accept it. This seems to be a factor in why it can be so hard for some people to give up materialism. Besides having to change their world view regarding ESP and the afterlife, they also have to accept that the authority figures they trust are wrong on the subjects. It is a really mind crushing change in world view on two separate fronts and that may explain why some people are so resistant to giving up materialism.
 
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#2
One reason for the resistance is probably that such concepts as NDEs and a possible afterlife, equate in the public mind with religion.
And religion - in many cases quite rightly so - has been demonised in recent years for its inflexibility and insanity.
So folk literally feel between a rock and a hard place.
Our job is to persuade them that this is a new science - not the same old religion.
 

Ian Gordon

Ninshub
Member
#3
I think the authority figures dimension is possibly the biggest contributor.
One reason for the resistance is probably that such concepts as NDEs and a possible afterlife, equate in the public mind with religion.
Organized religion is one of those authority figures, though, and the resistance comes equally from religious believers or people who put stock in religious institutions.

I was showing my interest in NDEs and afterlife phenomena to an older family member, and he said, "How could this be true? If it was, wouldn't the Catholic Church be already promoting it?" This person isn't a religious believer (nor an atheist), but relies, like most people, on the word of authority figures to tell him what is and isn't.
 
#4
It may also be that many humans seem to require direct experience to gain any real sense of understanding or acceptance. So someone who has never loved may in some ways doubt that love even exists. Or someone who has never felt the pain over the loss of a dear thing may doubt the depths of pain that can come from such a loss. They may be able to entertain the notions of these things, but they may not truly accept them until they have experienced them for themselves. Just like many people still basically deny that addiction or depression are anything more than the effects of a weak mind.

I doubt even that everyone that experiences something out of the ordinary surrounding a death event attributes to it the value of actual evidence for the afterlife. Obviously some do, but not all.

There are scientists who have taken up that mantle and who are working to improve the data, but there are better avenues than the NDE to do that work. Someone who really wanted to finally prove non-local veridicality of a conscious experience would use the best practitioners of the OBE and lucid dreaming and design an experiment that had controls that couldn't be denied as being flawed. Waiting for someone to die and see a target is kind of a retarded way to go about it. Every single day hundreds if not thousands of people experience conscious awareness apparently free from the constraints of their physical body.

One possible problem with NDE research is that it mixes apples with oranges. On the one hand it actually tries to perform some scientific work by attempting to narrow in on consciousness that is apparently both aware and free of the physical form. But on the other hand it gets caught up in all the stories, which may be interesting, but which may or may not have anything at all to do with the true nature of non-physical reality, if there even is such a definite thing as that.
 
#5
On another forum, someone who is trying to understand the evidence from NDEs expressed stupefaction about how there could be such compelling evidence of the afterlife based on NDEs yet the scientific establishment does not accept it. This seems to be a factor in why it can be so hard for some people to give up materialism. Besides having to change their world view regarding ESP and the afterlife, they also have to accept that the authority figures they trust are wrong on the subjects. It is a really mind crushing change in world view on two separate fronts and that may explain why some people are so resistant to giving up materialism.
One reason for the resistance is probably that such concepts as NDEs and a possible afterlife, equate in the public mind with religion.
And religion - in many cases quite rightly so - has been demonised in recent years for its inflexibility and insanity.
So folk literally feel between a rock and a hard place.
Our job is to persuade them that this is a new science - not the same old religion.
I think the authority figures dimension is possibly the biggest contributor.
Organized religion is one of those authority figures, though, and the resistance comes equally from religious believers or people who put stock in religious institutions.

I was showing my interest in NDEs and afterlife phenomena to an older family member, and he said, "How could this be true? If it was, wouldn't the Catholic Church be already promoting it?" This person isn't a religious believer (nor an atheist), but relies, like most people, on the word of authority figures to tell him what is and isn't.
It may also be that many humans seem to require direct experience to gain any real sense of understanding or acceptance. So someone who has never loved may in some ways doubt that love even exists. Or someone who has never felt the pain over the loss of a dear thing may doubt the depths of pain that can come from such a loss. They may be able to entertain the notions of these things, but they may not truly accept them until they have experienced them for themselves. Just like many people still basically deny that addiction or depression are anything more than the effects of a weak mind.

I doubt even that everyone that experiences something out of the ordinary surrounding a death event attributes to it the value of actual evidence for the afterlife. Obviously some do, but not all.

There are scientists who have taken up that mantle and who are working to improve the data, but there are better avenues than the NDE to do that work. Someone who really wanted to finally prove non-local veridicality of a conscious experience would use the best practitioners of the OBE and lucid dreaming and design an experiment that had controls that couldn't be denied as being flawed. Waiting for someone to die and see a target is kind of a retarded way to go about it. Every single day hundreds if not thousands of people experience conscious awareness apparently free from the constraints of their physical body.

One possible problem with NDE research is that it mixes apples with oranges. On the one hand it actually tries to perform some scientific work by attempting to narrow in on consciousness that is apparently both aware and free of the physical form. But on the other hand it gets caught up in all the stories, which may be interesting, but which may or may not have anything at all to do with the true nature of non-physical reality, if there even is such a definite thing as that.

David Ray Griffin noted in his article on philosophical foundations of parapsychology:

One of the factors making action at a distance such an important issue at the time was the “witch-craze” of the 16th and 17th centuries, which some historians consider the major social problem of the time (Kors & Peters, 1972). The accusations of witchcraft presupposed the idea that the human mind could directly cause harm to other people and their possessions. The mechanistic philosophy of Descartes and Mersenne, by denying that any action at a distance can occur and, more particularly, by denying that the mind can exercise influence upon remote objects (Descartes’ philosophy made it difficult to understand how the mind could even influence its own body), undermined the world of thought in which the witch-craze flourished and helped bring about its demise (Easlea, 1980; Lenoble, 1943, pp. 18, 89-96; Trevor-Roper, 1969).

I think that the horrific bloodbath of the old European which-hunt was one of the major reasons for many Westerners' common rejection of anything associsated with "paranormal" or "supernatural". Being tired of wild and twisted accusations of "devilry" and "evil sorcery", Europeans were desperate enough to accept a belief-system which forbade such "sorcery" to exist, even if dehumanizing the world (turning it into a machine) in a process.
 
#6
On another forum, someone who is trying to understand the evidence from NDEs expressed stupefaction about how there could be such compelling evidence of the afterlife based on NDEs yet the scientific establishment does not accept it. This seems to be a factor in why it can be so hard for some people to give up materialism. Besides having to change their world view regarding ESP and the afterlife, they also have to accept that the authority figures they trust are wrong on the subjects. It is a really mind crushing change in world view on two separate fronts and that may explain why some people are so resistant to giving up materialism.
I see your points. My take:

- It is not crushing but mind expanding and freeing.
- The mindset that is strongly aligned to the pronouncements of authority figures is of little concern to me. It's the same mindset that in other eras burned genuine scientific explorers as heretics.
- Science, like most religions, was not intended to be a way that became the canon of authority figures. However, like most religions, it has. The "world of science" nowadays is peopled by Holy Fathers and a dutifully worshipful laity.
 
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