Philosophy of Religion

Chapter  5 Arguments for the Existence of God: Experience 

Mediums

NBC "hit show"  Medium 

see also http://skepdic.com/refuge/funk44.html

 In its premiere at 10 pm Monday January 3rd, NBC's "Medium", starring Patricia Arquette as a "research medium" who helps police solve crimes, averaged 16.1 million viewers. "Medium" is said to be based on the work of Allison Dubois

NBC developed the first show based on a pseudo-autobiographical story by Allison Dubois.  She wrote a fantasy novel that is passed as being non-fiction.   NBC now claims only that there is a person named Allison Dubois and that she claims to be a psychic not that the "true story" includes that she truly has those powers nor that she truly worked with or for the police.  Allison Dubois acknowledges that the episodes after the first are fictional and that they are written and produced and broadcast to be entertaining.

The show is a fiction and is based on a fiction.  It does mislead many viewers into thinking that the events being portrayed are both true and accurate when they are not.

A research medium is a psychic detective. Psychics, including psychic detectives, are not allowed to testify in court for good reason.  They have no evidence to confirm their claims.  Evidence introduced in a court or that should be considered by rational human beings needs to be reviewed critically and examined using empirical techniques of investigation. The testimony of psychic detectives does not hold up well to careful examination.

If there were genuine psychic powers employed by individuals in connection with law enforcement such persons would be well known and used quite often.  Instead there is no record of such persons being accepted as offering dependable information by law enforcement.psychic detectives 

Psychic detectives (PDs) are alleged psychics who offer to help law enforcement agencies solve crimes.  They are not very successful. The evidence as opposed to the media hype indicates a lack of success. Read: http://www.skepdic.com/psychdet.html or Read: POLICE "PSYCHICS" Do they Really Help Solve Crimes? by Joe Nickell  1.        http://www.cicap.org/new/stampa.php?id=1010062.      

Read also: Despite Popularity, Psychic Detectives Fail to Perform Skeptical Inquirer| 04 February 2005 | Benjamin Radford    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1336797/posts

psychic        http://www.skepdic.com/psychic.html

psychic        http://www.skepdic.com/psychic.html

As an adjective, psychic refers to forces or agencies of a paranormal nature. As a noun, psychic refers to a medium or a  person who has paranormal powers.

A good part of the appearance of psychics being able to read people is explained by something known as cold reading http://skepdic.com/coldread.html   Cold reading refers to a set of techniques used by professional manipulators to get a subject to behave in a certain way or to think that the cold reader has some sort of special ability that allows him to "mysteriously" know things about the subject.

Just about all of the appearance of the medium being correct in providing accurate information to subjects is accounted for by what is known as  subjective validation  http://skepdic.com/forer.html    Psychologist B.R. Forer found that people tend to accept vague and general personality descriptions as uniquely applicable to themselves without realizing that the same description could be applied to just about anyone.

cold reading http://skepdic.com/coldread.html

Cold reading refers to a set of techniques used by professional manipulators to get a subject to behave in a certain way or to think that the cold reader has some sort of special ability that allows him to "mysteriously" know things about the subject.

subjective validation  http://skepdic.com/forer.html

Psychologist B.R. Forer found that people tend to accept vague and general personality descriptions as uniquely applicable to themselves without realizing that the same description could be applied to just about anyone.

see further:    William Harwood, A Closer Look at Medium. Skeptical Inquirer, May/June 2005, pp. 59-60.

VIEW:  Penn and Teller - Talking To The Dead (Full Episode)  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQnqRaVT9tY

COLD READING  A number of books and dvd's exist so anyone can appear to have the abilities of a medium or psychic reader.  here are a few

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Copyright Philip A. Pecorino 2001. All Rights reserved.

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