Skeptical Links

For some time I have been toying with a post about the skeptics out there, faithfully blogging and writing and debunking. But I couldn’t think of a post I could bring out of their writing without either massively plagiarising them (a very bad thing, by the way) or just providing a bunch of links in a post.

What to do? I have created a new section on my Links page – Skeptical Links. In there you will find a random sampling of links to pages which aim to debunk such things as psychics, mediums, homeopathic medicine and a glut of other things which end up with you paying money for nothing except some (hopefully) kind words and little else.

I would like to thank the following people for getting and maintaining my interest in these things: The Two Percent Co whose entertaining rants kept me reading, the James Randi Educational Foundation who strive to discount false mediums and psychics and other tricksters and to teach the world to use their brains and finally, Robert Lancaster of StopSylviaBrowne who spends an awful lot of time researching and investigating the claims of Sylvia Browne (if you’re a Montel fan, you’ll know of her) and finding the flaws and the misleading and plain wrong information she disseminates.

A warning: these sites are often plainly atheist and so, if those sorts of things offend, don’t go there or blame me if they challenge and disagree with your religious views. These sites are owned by the people who write them and they are well within their rights to express their views and beliefs.

Hopefully, even those of you with only a passing interest in these subjects will find them interesting. I will say this to you all – if you are planning to visit a psychic, a medium, a palm reader or whoever, please please please read the sites before you go. They may not change your minds, but any information or testimonials can give you a better picture of what to expect.

And finally, if you are like I was some time ago, you may think that it’s not always a bad thing to tell someone a harmless lie, even if it does cost a lot of money to receive that lie. Read through the stories told by people who have attended to receive the lies and also look at what happens to people who are told these lies. One psychic *cough* Sylvia Browne *cough* told a couple on national television that their missing daughter was working as a dancer at an “adult entertainment” club. Turns out that the poor girl had been killed not long after she went missing. Not such a harmless lie after all.

The fact is that a psychic can and does tie up essential police resources looking in the wrong places and can either give a family false hope or devastate them by giving them information on their missing loved ones that cane harm thier memories of that person.

That said, please read the sites and come to your own conclusions. Obviously, these sites are one viewpoint, there are others and you should always look at both sides of the story and come to your own conclusions.

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Posted on 7 October, 2007, in Site News, Skeptical Stories and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. I hope you don’t club Homeopathy along with other assorted nonsense. I have genuine first hand experience that Homeopathy works and in cases where Allopathy has failed miserably. As a system of medicine, it is genuine. It depends on how qualified the practitioner is and in our case, we consult an excellent doctor.

    We haven’t given up allopathy, but I think there is a lot of value in homeopathy as a scientific system of medicine.

  2. Well, all I can say is that I know for a fact that it works. It has its limitations, but the medications are genuine and the effects are equally genuine. The doctor we see is a very transparent and open person and never hides the content of his medicines.

    Several of my father’s ailments including chronic stomach trouble has been cured permanently only by homeopathy. Again, I base my views on personal experience only. This stuff works, but require patience and persistence in taking the correct dosage of medicines at indicated times over a period of time.

  3. But the basis of homeopathy (if my reading/understanding is correct) is that you take something which is supposed to work – let’s say salt as an example – and then dilute it and dilute the dilution and so on and so forth until the salt is undetectable. The water you dilute the dilutions with is supposed to “remember” that the original had salt in it and react accordingly.

    I think that natural medicines have been coopted by the homeopathy bunch and managed to lump both into the public’s mind.

  4. I have no idea of the inner workings, but I know for a fact that many of the medicines are not diluted so much. In fact, the doctor I mentioned clearly mentions the strength of each medicine.

    Some are so strong that if you take them without any symptoms you actually get those symptoms. My father has told me a stroy that a long time ago, a friend of my father once ridiculed homeopathy and took a strong dose of a homeopathic medicine and ended up with a severe headache afterwards.

    Fact is, one shouldn’t mess with this stuff without full knowledge. 😉

  5. To all: Hari and I have continued this via email and I have just discovered (and reported) that allopathy is not homoeopathy. The reason, as I read it, is that allopathy cures by doing the opposite to the illness: so a fever sufferer would be asked to sit in a cold bath to reduce the fever (which sounds fairly logical to me, as a non medical practitioner). Homoeopathy says that you mimic the illness to cure it. Therefore you would wrap a fever sufferer in a blanket to reduce the fever. Similar to all the advice I had as a child when I had a cold or the flu.

    So it is unsurprising that someone should receive a headache from taking a homeopathic medicine, particularly if that medicine was designed to cure a headache!

  6. I love the way James Randi explain the false side of psychics and mediums world. He uncovers the the way some of those people cheat others. By the story here, Sylvia Browne seem to be such a person. Thank for the post.

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