Tuesday, February 14, 2017

OUPblog: ISBN 9780190620295 Authors On Pseudosciences Like Vitalism

here, an excerpt from a promo for the 2016 second edition of "Quantum Leaps in the Wrong Direction Where Real Science Ends...and Pseudoscience Begins", which is ISBN 9780190620295, regarding pseudosciences like vitalism:

001. at blog.oup.com, which is OUPblog, "Oxford University Press's Academic Insights for the Thinking World", Charles M. Wynn Sr. and Arthur W. Wiggins write in "Deconstructing Pseudoscience" (2017-02-17)[2017 archived]:

"can magicians (illusionists) really levitate themselves and others or bend spoons using only the power of their mind? No. Emphatically no [...] here’s a sampling of [other] illusions about reality that fool many people: unidentified flying objects (UFOs) are alien spaceships piloted by extraterrestrials (ETs) [...] a ghost is the soul or specter of a dead person [...] the position and movements of particular celestial bodies at the moment of a human being’s birth predetermine that individual’s personality and other characteristics and influence day-to-day events during their lifetime [aka astrology...] the universe was created in all its complexity by the command of God in six days of 24 hours each, no more than 6,000 to 10,000 years ago [aka  'young earth creationism / biblical literalism'...] extrasensory perception [aka ESP...and the big one] unique 'life-energy field' undetectable by scientific instruments and known as qi or chi, ka, prana, or HEF (human energy field) exists. It courses through our bodies in pathways or channels called meridians that branch off to all major organs in our body. Imbalance or interruption of these energies is directly related to health or emotional problems. Adjustment of these energies by practitioners can restore health and well-being [...]";

and the connection to naturopathy is that naturopathy mandates a belief in a "life force" or "vital force" falsely claimed as categorically "science."

"do any of them correspond to reality?  No. Emphatically no.  Just like stage magic, they are all illusions [...] evidence for these phenomena fail to meet the standards of science [...] pseudoscientific ideas are generally personal or anecdotal as opposed to scientific concepts that require abundant replicated physical evidence for support [...] perhaps the most harm comes from the dulling of critical thinking skills [...] ";

hear, hear.
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