Jump to content

Why do we usually associate the paranormal with religion?


petrushka.googol
 Share

Recommended Posts

My stand is that we tend to associate paranormal phenomena like ESP, deja vu, intuition etc with religion.

There is no reason as to why they are connected.

 

May be some people tap in to the "event horizon" naturally and are pre-disposed to experience such phenomena.

 

It could be that even spirits and ghosts are actually dinizens of some inter-planetary "Hades", experiencing some dimension which we cannot comprehend.

 

Though science refutes belief in gnomes, ghosts et al I think in the light of 21st century "enlightenment" we should look at this more subjectively.

 

One conundrum, is why do we extrapolate these phenomena on some religious matrix?

 

These could be some scientific phenomena, that we are yet to comprehend, and we tend to propitiate our rational thought (about what are currently construed as irrational phenomena) on the random quirks of some officiating deity.

 

Please affirm my stand, if you please.

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My stand is that we tend to associate paranormal phenomena like ESP, deja vu, intuition etc with religion.

There is no reason as to why they are connected.

 

 

 

 

Religious texts are full of supernatural happenings: water to wine, talking cats and dogs, invisibility... the list is pretty long. Therefore they are associated.

 

 

Though science refutes belief in gnomes, ghosts et al I think in the light of 21st century "enlightenment" we should look at this more subjectively.

 

Science is neutral in the matter - it is the evidence which does not support the existence of gnomes and ghosts.

 

One conundrum, is why do we extrapolate these phenomena on some religious matrix?

 

There is no conundrum. Religious people continue to make supernatural claims.

 

 

 

I cannot understand the obsession religious people have with trying to understand physical phenomena through mystical hand-waving. We have a very good method of understanding such things which demonstrably works. One would think this would make religious people happy, for no longer do we have to worry about such physical questions, but can rather focus on the important questions such as how to be a better and happier person. Unfortunately religion cannot let go of its historical burdens and so has become a bane to humanity when it might have been a boon.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

I don't.

To some degree, I do.

Since none of them (ESP, deja vu, intuition, religion) is apparently real.

Clearly, there are differences but I can happily lump them together as "mistakes the mind makes because of the way it's built".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I recognise that many religious people link imagined paranormal phenomena to religion. Is is surprising that religious people link events, real, or imaginary, in their world to religion? I think not.

 

I don't. When I investigated, in an amateurish way, ESP and the like in my teens, I saw no connection to religion, despite at that point being a theist.

 

I have no idea what the commonest attitude would be, I simply know that I strongly doubt the general tendency you suggest exists. A proper study would, however, be needed to reach a sound conclusion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Did a quick search and found two articles: one finding a correlation between supernatural beliefs and religiosity and one finding otherwise. Could only read the abstracts so no idea them really - hopefully someone has access.

Nice find. I suspect that without a wide range of studies, whose findings are encapsulated in a mega-study, there will be no easy way to exclude selection biases.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Is often said that there are two different types of thinking in people. One is intuitive thinking. Two is critical thinking. Those who tend more often to think intuitively also tend to be more religious than critical thinkers, IIRC.

 

It stands to reason that the same intuitive thinking that increases religiosity also tends to lead one to more likely hold beliefs in the paranormal, whereas more critical thinkers would likely dismiss it in much the same way as they dismiss the supernatural.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A miracle is best defined, I think, as something unexpected. If that something did actually happen, then it was not impossible. Thus a miracle is not something impossible that happened anyway.

 

I think it best to define "supernatural" as something outside our normal shared experience. If we can accept that everything that is is "natural" and is a part of the natural world then supernatural defined his way does not mean existence or a phenomenon somehow "outside the natural world" where there is nothing and where we could have no experience of it even if it were "there".

 

Given the above, I think we may expect that unexpected things (miracles) do happen and people have experiences which are not shared (supernatural). Attempting to explain or explain away an experience which is not shared is futile. What an unshared experience means is most likely to be elusive to others and perhaps even to the one who had the experience. I think it best to not dismiss an individual's experience or any meaning he/she takes from it.

 

Science has only recently theorized that 95 percent or more of the posited universe is not visible. It seems to me that there is a lot left to discover. Perhaps some of it will relate to unshared experiences. Best to keep an open mind.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@ OP,

 

I think the goal of science is to understand everything, and that would involve a complete Theory of everything.

 

Theories of Everything have been proposed by many and I'm sure the speculations forum gets some pretty crazy Theories of everything on a regular basis.

 

If you were to believe in ESP then you would be hard pressed to find a "theory of Everything" including ESP that does not include religion. If one ever comes into existence I would love to hear it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A miracle is best defined, I think, as something unexpected. If that something did actually happen, then it was not impossible. Thus a miracle is not something impossible that happened anyway.

 

I think it best to define "supernatural" as something outside our normal shared experience. If we can accept that everything that is is "natural" and is a part of the natural world then supernatural defined his way does not mean existence or a phenomenon somehow "outside the natural world" where there is nothing and where we could have no experience of it even if it were "there".

 

Given the above, I think we may expect that unexpected things (miracles) do happen and people have experiences which are not shared (supernatural). Attempting to explain or explain away an experience which is not shared is futile. What an unshared experience means is most likely to be elusive to others and perhaps even to the one who had the experience. I think it best to not dismiss an individual's experience or any meaning he/she takes from it.

 

Science has only recently theorized that 95 percent or more of the posited universe is not visible. It seems to me that there is a lot left to discover. Perhaps some of it will relate to unshared experiences. Best to keep an open mind.

 

Just pondering....may be the event horizon of a black hole could constitute a supernatural phenomenon....difficult to explain but impossible to deny :confused:

 

 

@ OP,

 

I think the goal of science is to understand everything, and that would involve a complete Theory of everything.

 

Theories of Everything have been proposed by many and I'm sure the speculations forum gets some pretty crazy Theories of everything on a regular basis.

 

If you were to believe in ESP then you would be hard pressed to find a "theory of Everything" including ESP that does not include religion. If one ever comes into existence I would love to hear it.

 

As a popular example of ESP, I would like to list nde's (near death experiences). They constitute the unreal and irrational, yet many people testify by them. Is there a holographic time-independent constituent of the mind that assimilates into the Universe. (may be this is what ancients like Pythagoras called the soul.....which he believed even the bean possessed..) only time will tell? My own take on the "Theory of Everything" is it has to include more subtle things like how the human mind collapses the Universal wave-function and we perceive the Universe... which has, and will always be, awe-inspiring. :wacko:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As a popular example of ESP, I would like to list nde's (near death experiences). They constitute the unreal and irrational, yet many people testify by them

 

 

How could anyone testify on the experiences of someone else? Your idea of mind collapsing waves is Bohr'ish and opposite the views of Einstein so is not exactly accepted physics in our age. See Fred Alan Wolf for expanded views on your thinking, watch his idea of Double Slit on youtube.

 

Now however you are attempting to use science to explain your beliefs and understanding which seems like a more valid way of researching it than comparing it to religion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My stand is that we tend to associate paranormal phenomena like ESP, deja vu, intuition etc with religion.

There is no reason as to why they are connected.

 

May be some people tap in to the "event horizon" naturally and are pre-disposed to experience such phenomena.

 

It could be that even spirits and ghosts are actually dinizens of some inter-planetary "Hades", experiencing some dimension which we cannot comprehend.

 

Though science refutes belief in gnomes, ghosts et al I think in the light of 21st century "enlightenment" we should look at this more subjectively.

 

One conundrum, is why do we extrapolate these phenomena on some religious matrix?

 

These could be some scientific phenomena, that we are yet to comprehend, and we tend to propitiate our rational thought (about what are currently construed as irrational phenomena) on the random quirks of some officiating deity.

 

Please affirm my stand, if you please.

 

Spirits and non-human form existence beyond this world is a basic concept in religion. It is as though you are removing god then challanging us to be objective about heaven, hell, souls, and eternity. Only you are giving these terms different names:

Soul - "It could be that even spirits and ghosts are actually dinizens of some inter-planetary "Hades", "

Heavan/hell - "experiencing some dimension which we cannot comprehend."

Eternity - " May be some people tap in to the "event horizon" "

 

ESP, Deja vu, Intuition, and etc can be discussed individually. When a larger mechanism is implied that transends what is known about the human experience religion will always creep in to the discussion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A miracle is best defined, I think, as something unexpected.

 

I think it best to define "supernatural" as something outside our normal shared experience.

Clearly you don't hold with the idea of accepting definitions that have evolved over time and are used by the vast majority of educated persons. On that basis, as your definitions are not shared by the population at large, or any significant segment of it, (and are not normal) that would make them supernatural.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

To some degree, I do.

Since none of them (ESP, deja vu, intuition, religion) is apparently real.

Clearly, there are differences but I can happily lump them together as "mistakes the mind makes because of the way it's built".

 

Yes, you can lump them together, but to me that doesn't mean they are indistinct within that classification.

 

I was under the impression that most religions reject most paranormal phenomena outside of whatever their deity can do. Large swaths of Christianity, for example, reject witchcraft and magic. There are multiple Biblical passages warning people not to turn to mediums.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

I was under the impression that most religions reject most paranormal phenomena outside of whatever their deity can do. Large swaths of Christianity, for example, reject witchcraft and magic. There are multiple Biblical passages warning people not to turn to mediums.

 

Yes, because those practices come from other religions and are dubbed "paganistic" or "heretical".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What religions are based on ESP or fortune-telling? Enlighten me

 

 

I would think most. Certainly Christian/Catholic/Hindu/Muslim to name a few major ones.

 

Prophets existed which "allegedly" gave guidance to the people supposedly from the words of god.

 

This is accepted in those religions as truth.

 

I believe there is a section of the bible that is supposed to predict ("fortune telling") Armageddon/ The end of the world.

 

Personally I dislike the Catholics because they are one of the most murderous religions known to have existed, but they still endorse fortune telling.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

What religions are based on ESP or fortune-telling? Enlighten me.

 

Vedic astrology (fortune-telling) is closely associated with hindu religions, which follow the Vedas, hence the adjective "Vedic".

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hindu_astrology

 

Furthermore, astrologers claim the planets have associations that correspond to the Greek gods for which they're named.

Edited by MonDie
Link to comment
Share on other sites

paranormal adj.

Beyond the range of normal experience or scientific explanation.

source

 

Note that ESP and fortune telling are sufficient for paranormality, but not necessary.

 

Outside of the basic paranormality of god or gods (which is plenty enough to see why paranormality is associated with religion), the Catholics practice exorcisms, the Muslims believe in the Jinn, the Protestants talk in tongues, the Hindus worship idols, the Jains believe in Kevala Jnana, and the Jews have their golem.

 

These are just singular examples of paranormality from each of the major religions and each has many others. This is not to say paranormality is exclusive to these religions or any religion at all. The premise of 'usually' in the title relegates the whole discussion to the WAG category. Can I get a 'yo Josiah' up in here? :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

Vedic astrology (fortune-telling) is closely associated with hindu religions, which follow the Vedas, hence the adjective "Vedic".

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hindu_astrology

 

Furthermore, astrologers claim the planets have associations that correspond to the Greek gods for which they're named.

 

Do astrologers actually believe the Greek gods exist, and follow that religion?

 

I would think most. Certainly Christian/Catholic/Hindu/Muslim to name a few major ones.

 

Prophets existed which "allegedly" gave guidance to the people supposedly from the words of god.

 

This is accepted in those religions as truth.

 

I believe there is a section of the bible that is supposed to predict ("fortune telling") Armageddon/ The end of the world.

 

Personally I dislike the Catholics because they are one of the most murderous religions known to have existed, but they still endorse fortune telling.

 

This is moot. I specifically said they reject the abilities outside of the connection to their deity.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@ Swansont,

Okay. I saw this post and replied to only this.

What religions are based on ESP or fortune-telling? Enlighten me.

 

 

Then you referred to an earlier post I probably skipped in which you qualified further aspects to it.

here...

 

I specifically said they reject the abilities outside of the connection to their deity.

 

 

I listed Catholic etc., because I did not realize the part about connection to deities, although I think others gave you good answers such as Acme. Astrology is fortune telling without deities accepted by various religions.

 

Okay. I'll bite...

 

One of the oldest religions worships Mother Earth and it is believed by many archeologists and accepted through history that the roots of pagan religions go back to the cave man days.

 

However...

 

In todays age it is known as Wicca. It is a religion, but some refer to it as witchcraft.

 

Wikipedia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wicca

Wicca (English pronunciation: /ˈwɪkə/) is a modern pagan, witchcraft religion.

 

 

So it is a religion. In fact it is closer to my own beliefs than any 2000 year old bible from those catholics and christians can muster. It also has some similarities to Hindu (surprisingly).

 

Anyways. In Wicca you can practice magick without invoking any Deity. Yes I said magick.

 

From same Wikipedia article...

Wicca often involves the ritual practice of magic, though it is not always necessary.

 

 

I spell Magick with a K but that was adopted by many to avoid confusion with stage magic. But there it is in black and white.

 

A religion that involves magic without a Deity. I can assure you I am well read in most religions and can show aspects of ESP and fortune telling in this religion for sure. The Fortune Telling aspect normally involves something called a Pendulum that is asked questions and responds with Yes or No answers (I am not saying it is true. I am saying this is what they believe).

 

http://www.wicca-spirituality.com/pendulum.html

(you can see what I am referring to in the above article, but it is very common if you have further doubts about this)

 

Again.. I am not saying it works. I am saying this is a Religion that has Fortune Telling and ESP near its core.

 

So I have

 

A) shown it is a religion

B) shown that it involves Fortune Telling (Pendulum as just one way) with no plea to a deity. The practitioner does their own magick. There are other Fortune Telling aspects to the religion such as promoting dreams for guidance and more.

 

So what about ESP?

 

This is more prevalent than Pendulums in the Religion. Not only are thoughts sent and read, but healing and harmful thoughts are supposed to Heal/hurt the intended person(s).

 

(I am not saying it is real. I am saying this is part of the Wiccan religion.)

 

Here is a letter from a Priestess on telepathy (maybe she not a priestess. I want ID, lol).

 

http://sibyllineorder.org/wicca101/w1_gifts.htm

 

Here is a "Magick Spell" (Remember Wikipedia says they sometimes do magick)

 


"As it be thought in the mind of others
both familiar and strange
both sisters and brothers
may it be heard in mine own head
loud and clear as if it'd been said."

 

 

 

See if you can guess purpose of that spell without clicking the link.

http://www.wiccanspace.com/spells/814-telepathy.html

 

From

http://www.religioustolerance.org/wic_beli.htm

We conceive of the Creative Power in the universe as manifesting through polarity – as masculine and feminine – and that this same Creative Power lies in all people and functions

 

 

This expresses well the notion that there lies a belief that Ordinary People have Powers to shape their reality, no need for deity.

 

From same page...

 

We recognize both outer worlds and inner, or psychological worlds sometimes known as the Spiritual World, the Collective Unconsciousness

 

 

Collective Unconscious. This is a Borg type thing where all of our minds are in psychic communication to subconsciously and consciously (in case of Wiccans) shape our reality.

 

Here is an official definition of collective Unconscious.

Carl Jung - “My thesis then, is as follows: in addition to our immediate consciousness, which is of a thoroughly personal nature and which we believe to be the only empirical psyche (even if we tack on the personal unconscious as an appendix), there exists a second psychic system of a collective, universal, and impersonal nature which is identical in all individuals. This collective unconscious does not develop individually but is inherited. It consists of pre-existent forms, the archetypes, which can only become conscious secondarily and which give definite form to certain psychic contents.”[

 

 

That was written by Sigmund Freuds friend, Carl Jung. He coined both the Term "Collective Unconscious" and "Synchronicity". Both of which are used commonly today.

 

@ Swansont still,

 

So we have shown that Wicca is a religion and it is much older than Christianity. Had the Catholics not burned every library and heretic they could find a lot more documentation would likely have been found.

 

"Sorcery and sanctity are the only realities,"- Nostradamus

 

 

Although Nostradamus lived long ago he practiced "fortune Telling using a Wiccan method (not yet mentioned here) called Scrying. I will not describe it, but there is plenty of reading material on this method.

 

It is indisputable that he came deeply under the old pagan (Wicca is based upon paganism) methods of divination.

 

NOTE: I have not said Wiccans can do what they claim, nor am I saying Nostradamus is real. I am only demonstrating that there is a widely accepted religion that believes in Magic, ESP, and fortune telling WITHOUT use of a deity.

 

I could find hundreds of supporting links on any aspects of this if it is to be argued. Please be specific what parts you do not accept (because I am expecting opposition if only for the sake of it).

 

Otherwise admit there are religions that work magic, telepathy, fortune telling, without need for a deity to be involved.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

<sigh>

 

The question here (it's in the OP) is why do we usually associate the paranormal with religion. Note the "usually" part, and also the "we" part.

 

So "the Greeks followed the Greek gods" refers to the past, so that's moot. The Wiccans use magick would be a counterexample if there were lots of Wiccans about. Are there? Are they representative of the typical religious person?

 

The observation that some Hindus follow astrology from the Vedas is more on point. Then the question becomes how prevalent is that, and does it include the other examples from the OP, such as ESP and dejá vu, and whether those phenomena get the religious stamp of approval.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.