As some of you may be aware, I am writing a book on the paranormal. The other day, while commenting with friends about my manuscript, someone commented on my Facebook page in a personal message, “How can you believe such crap. It’s all a bunch of lies fabricated to target less intelligent people into fearing what they are too stupid to realize doesn’t exist, and for what? Just so they spend more money and further the cause of so-called paranormal bullshit.”
What could I say? Normally when confronted with a controversial argument I would avoid bantering with, let’s just say people I considered less informed and closed-minded. But this time the attack was directed at something I was passionate about, my book. I said, “Okay, do you mind if I ask you a few questions?” The response was a quick, “Sure. Why not?”
“Just to clarify, you are contending that paranormal phenomenon is, in your words “bullshit”, does that mean you do not believe it exists?”
“That’s right. Not only doesn’t it exist, prove it does!”
“Do you believe Homeland Security exist?”
“I guess, but they do a shitty job.”
“Do you know anyone working for Homeland Security?”
“No. Not personally, but that doesn’t prove they don’t exist.”
“You’re right. Just bear with me for a moment.”
“Do you believe Hitler existed?”
“Everyone knows Hitler existed, so what.”
“Did you ever shake Hitler’s hand?”
“No, but that doesn’t prove a damn thing.”
“Do you believe the planets Mercury, Venus, and Mars exist?”
“Duh, everyone knows they exist.”
“Does your faith lead you to believe in the God of the Bible?”
“Yeah, so what. Get to the point”
“So you believe in Homeland Security even though you have never known anyone from Homeland Security. You know Adolph Hitler existed, but you never shook his hand. You believe the planets Mercury, Venus, and Mars exist, but you have never set foot on them. You believe in God because your faith tells you to and because you read about Him in a book, but you also know, beyond the shadow of all doubts that paranormal phenomenon is purely a hoax. Am I understanding this correctly?
“Whatever dude. Get a fuckin’ life.”
“Yeah. That’s kinda what I expected.”
Needless to say, I probably lost a friend from my all too precious friends list. Truth be told, I don’t think I ever talked to the individual before this conversation. The idea of the “friends list” perturbs me to no end, like the “preferred customer”, I thought all customers should be considered “preferred”, but that’s another article.
Here it is in a nutshell. I don’t care what you believe, but make it a sound argument. I don’t believe I will live to be as old as Methuselah, and frankly, 969 years-old doesn’t sound too appealing. Why don’t I believe it; longevity today states life expectancy of Baby Boomer males is 75.4 years-old, that gives me approximately 22.2 years left, hence a sound argument!
To say, I don’t believe because I have never seen, experienced, or known, is not a sound argument. To infer God does not exist, I challenge you to prove it. Likewise, I challenge you to prove He does, and vice versa, prove He does not exist – it’s an impossible task. To prove paranormal phenomenon does not exist is another un-provable paradox. We have settled – the proverbial Occam’s razor; accept the most likely hypothesis based on the simplest solution, or the one that offers the least resistance.
Belief is a personal thing. People base beliefs on social influences; cultural influences, upbringing, education, personal bias, religious beliefs, peer pressure, media influence, and so many more exterior agencies, the problem: once they have been programmed, they seldom stop to consider ALL the possibilities.
Life is not black and white. There is so much more to consider in the gray areas than we would like to admit. Why? Because if we concede or accept a thing to be finite, that is – subject to limitations and confines, then we can control it and no longer fear its unknown powers. As reasoning individuals, we should face everything with one question in mind, “What if?” What if, would leave the doors open to a great deal of possibilities, perhaps, what if, would lead us to the next important question in the equation, “Why?”
This has been a… View From My Loft