5 Pieces of Evidence Against The Paranormal

One thing I love about the paranormal is the fierce debates that it causes. The comments left at the bottom of the articles here at Paranormal Haze are sometimes just as entertaining, if not more entertaining, than the articles themselves. I have presented evidence in support of the paranormal in several articles on this site and in the interest of fairness and to stir up a debate I wanted to present 5 pieces of evidence that those who believe in the paranormal will have to contend with in order for their beliefs to continue to hold water.

1. Facts say there are no monsters in the lake

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Almost every town has a lake monster. In the southern town that I grew up in the local sea monster was a catfish the size of a school bus. As it turned out there was some truth to that legend.

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While exaggerated, the lakes that I swam in as a kid were home to some pretty big catfish. In fact, most lakes are home to big fish species like these. More famous and fantastical stories exist though of plesiosaur-like beasts roaming lakes from North America to Scotland, but science is all but certain that it is impossible for plesiosaurs to exist in these lakes. For one, there simply is not enough food in these lakes to support a megafauna like plesiosaur. Second, most large lakes were carved out during the last ice age 10,000 years ago; plesiosaurs were long extinct by that time period.

It is also important to note plesiosaurs did not have gills, nor would any of the reptilian like sea creatures that are famous for roaming lakes. They would have to come up for air and have to come up often. In other words you would have to see these creatures come up for oxygen in these lakes about as often as you would see crocodiles or whales coming up for air, which is pretty often.

In 2003, the final nail may have been put in the coffin for this cryptid. The BBC conducted a large-scale search for Nessie, the most prolific of these giant, reptilian lake dwellers. They used 600 separate sonar beams and satellite tracking and came up with nothing.

2. Hoaxes

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Hoaxes are definitely the biggest thorn in paranormal believer’s side. So much great potential evidence has turned out to be a hoax and with Photoshop and the Internet hoaxes have never been easier. You can purchase a UFO balloon like the one above from multiple different inflatable balloon advertising companies. It has also never been easier to Photoshop ghosts into photographs. How does one even differentiate what could be real and what could be a hoax anymore?

3. Unclaimed Large Cash Rewards

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Right now there is a combined total of $2.4 millions dollars being offered by various organizations if someone can prove that they have supernatural or paranormal abilities under the specific organization’s test conditions. James Randi Educational Foundation alone offers one million dollars to anyone who can prove that they have psychic abilities.

So if clairvoyants or psychics actually exist, then these organizations are just giving money away to these people, right? Wrong. As of this writing all of these cash prizes have gone unclaimed, and not a single famous psychic has yet to go through with any of these tests. Are all psychics so well off that they don’t need a million bucks? I mean with the current economy there has to be a psychic somewhere hard up for money who would be willing to go read some minds for a bit and get a quick million dollar pay check and yet the money goes unclaimed.

4. Fermi Paradox

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Countless of reputable scientists including Steven Hawking, Carl Sagan, and Michio Kaku say that statistically speaking, we cannot be the only intelligent life to have evolved in the universe. Even those who say that the Drake Equation is nonsensical mental masturbation, have to admit that out of all the galaxies in the universe the likelihood of our solar system being the only to have evolved life seems very unlikely.

The Fermi Paradox is something that the proponents of intelligent life existing on other planets have to find a way around. The Fermi Paradox states if there is so much intelligent life in the universe then where is it? Why do we not see space probes from other worlds or receive radio signals from them? Where are all the aliens?

Some have suggested that intelligent extraterrestrial life does not exist or is so rare that humans will never see it. Evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins explains that becoming a self-aware, intelligent species was such a large evolutionary mountain to climb that other species doing the same is improbable. Evolutionary psychologist Steven Pinker has toyed with a similar idea. He says that believing intelligent life has had to evolved on other planets rises from a common misconception of evolution, the fallacy of the “ladder of evolution”. He says, “…Evolution does not strive for a goal but just happens…”

5. The God Helmet

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The God Helmet is a machine placed on top of a test subject’s head. The helmet focuses a magnetic field on the temporal lobe of the brain. It has been discovered that when this is done it causes the subject to have a spiritual or paranormal experience. The research got started when Michael Persinger began noticing that people who have temporal lobe epilepsy would often have vivid hallucinations that were strikingly similar to intense spiritual visions or claims of ghosts.

While using the God Helmet subjects have reported seeing figures standing around them in an empty room, feeling like there was fire all around them, and others who were of a religious persuasion claim that they felt more connected to God, among other experiences. Persinger theorizes that the body may stimulate this area of the brain naturally and this is why people sometimes see ghosts or have intense spiritual experiences. He also argues that evolutionary wise it makes sense. He says that we evolved this mechanism in our brain in order to cope with the stress of facing our own mortality. In other words, Persinger believes that he has discovered the afterlife and it is all in our heads.

A Conclusion

Bertrand Russell once famously wrote that there was a teapot that orbited the moon. It was too small to be seen by the naked eye and could not be seen or measured by any of Earth’s instruments. How do you prove or disprove that? The answer is that you cannot, but it isn’t going to stop people from trying.

Author: Jonathan Kaulay Copyrighted © paranormalhaze.com

43 Responses to “5 Pieces of Evidence Against The Paranormal”

  1. My challenge to all skeptics: debunk the decades of PEAR lab data.

    You can't.

    The paranormal phenomena proven by the data are real.

  2. I fail to see how the “God helmet” disproves the existence of God. I can pharmacologically induce auditory and visual hallucinations in patients, but that doesn't mean that hearing and vision are not valid means for perceiving reality.

  3. First off i am not commenting as a means of insulting this article. I instead encourage you to further your own conclusions with true evidence, real links and connections to the places you draw your personal truth upon.
    As a person who also seeks truth and uses both sides of an issue to draw his own conclusion to further enrich his own personal study I am very disappointed with this article. I am not here to contest on behalf of either side of this issue but your proposals of disproof have about as much evidence as the same myths your trying to debunk. While I will go with you on the lake monster myths- because my own research just screams fraud- I can't just go with you on the other issues.
    Your explanation for people with psychic abilities and such not being real has no validity to it based on your description. Who are these organizations offering money? what agenda do they have in giving someone this money? If I had psychic abilities I would be rather hesitant to just go claim prize money from some group that wants me to prove it for the sake of proving it. I would think they might use my abilities for their own selfish purposes.
    The explanation using the fermi paradox of aliens falls flat as well when you consider that the conclusion you are coming to is based on the idea that this other intelligent can not be further advanced then us. The scope of our science skills may be completely dwarfed by theirs and they might look at us as we look at monkeys who use tools. With so much calamity on our earth at the moment I would be hesitant to just pop in for a hello to us down here but who is to say they haven't already? Just because the general public doesn't have a mainstream experience with that reality doesn't mean it hasn't happened on some level and that government or other organizations don't want to disclose the information.
    Overall I am disappointed with the evidence you propose and hope that any further arguments made on the behalf of disbelief can pose true evidence as apposed to what is presented here. I look forward to more conclusive evidence in the future.

  4. Well this just debunks everything !! Well maybe not so much. Lame.

  5. Kinda hard to argue with evidence.

    http://www.remain-anonymous.at.tc

  6. #4 the fermi paradox and where are all of the ailens and their probes? Could UFO's be alien probes?

    Mutant Buzzard August 4, 2010 at 3:35 pm
  7. These are solid examples, everyone who says that this evidence is “lame” or “have as much truth as the myths” simply say this without actually backing up that comment as to why they are lame or do not have truth to them. What proof is there that anything paranormal (ufo, ghosts, god) exists that is not out weighed by counter evidence?

    AWESOME_0Possum August 4, 2010 at 3:40 pm
  8. In fact, I suggest someone attempt to refute any of these examples using counter scientific evidence and then providing evidence for the alternate fringe theory that is more compelling than the one provided.

    AWESOME_0Possum August 4, 2010 at 3:52 pm
  9. Confirmation Bias.

    AWESOME_0Possum August 4, 2010 at 3:55 pm
  10. You'll need to do better than that.

  11. well considering most of their evidence is summed up in a few paragraphs when I do google searches of PEAR lab I would have to say I need a specific example of their evidence to refute. I am not an expert in the field of psychology, just as I am sure you are no expert in parapsychology so perhaps neither of us have no right to comment on their claims, but if you provid a specific example of said evidence I''ll do my best

    AWESOME_0Possum August 5, 2010 at 5:30 am
  12. On article number 4…..How can one with a finite ability to comprehend speculate that in an infinite universe, other forms of life would be highly improbable?

  13. Universe is not infinite. See the well established and generally acceted theories of Steven Hawking

    AWESOME_0Possum August 5, 2010 at 8:44 am
  14. How about this: Man uses diplomas and big words to debunk everything on this planet and solar system. Is it not the fear of the unknown that makes us sit up at night? Trying to wrap our heads around death, time, life on other planets, strange “bumps” in the night….things of this nature are they very foundation of fear itself. Just simply saying “I don't know” is out of the question in this day and age. The point is simple: how the hell do you know? Is there life after death? No? How the hell do you know? How many times have you died? Is there life on other planets capable of space travel and study of mankind? No? How the hell do you know? Maybe they are smart enough to get here, study us and keep it a complete mystery to the majority of us. They say in death all of life's mysteries are answered and maybe we should spend more time on loving our fellow man and making sure we as a species thrive and flourish and reach our collective potential instead of pretending we spend more than a few decades on this Earth and we have more answers than the next confused, scared poor little human next to us. But what do I know, I only graduated High School.

  15. So what you are suggesting is we simply ignore these questions because we haven't died or haven't traveled all of space. We should not even attempt to use science to try and discover how death and the universe work, and if some how has a suggestion it should be void because he simply has a diploma and uses big words? Is this a proper summary of your statement?

  16. Failed to convince me…

  17. if we accept what scientists tell us and assume that the universe is infinite in size, then the odds that there is other intelligent life out there is roughly 50/50.
    infinity/1=infinity this would be the result if the universe were teeming with intelligent life
    1/infinity~=0 this would be the result if earth is the only intelligent life
    so, about 50/50.
    eat that Fermi.

  18. i was unaware that Steven Hawking has been to the edge of the universe. thank you for proving me wrong.

  19. I think a proper summary of Lloydguy's statement would be that:
    No one will ever truly know the answers to these questions. Death, extraterrestrial intelligence, God, psychics, and many more. No person will ever be able to answer these questions to the satisfaction of everyone else. If that is the case, then I for one feel that our time, money, and efforts could be better spent on answering more useful questions. Such as: “Why do some get cancer and not others?”, “Why can't we find a way to irrigate the desert and grow crops to feed more people?”, “Why can't we find a more efficient fuel source to power our cars and homes?”
    I feel these are the questions we need to answer. If you were to find out tomorrow that there is life on other planets, how much would it really impact your life? I would pretty much just carry on like before.

  20. Actually, someday we might answer the extraterrestrial intelligence question.

  21. Its called scientific consensus

    Douche Wellington August 23, 2010 at 1:40 pm
  22. I does not disprove existence of God. It just shows, that the theory of existence of God is practically equal to theory of existence of any other imaginary entity. Feelings of God's presence are no proof, even more since they can be created artificially now.

  23. In your Reason #3 I think it would be fair that you note in it a few of Mr. Randis rules for claiming his prize of 1,000,000 Dollars. Here is just one example of why so many to not attempt to try and claim these prizes.
    (From the Application form as i you can see NOT just anyone can apply)
    12. This offer is not open to any and all persons. Before being considered as an applicant, the person applying must satisfy two conditions: First, he/she must have a “media presence,” which means having been published, written about, or known to the media in regard to his/her claimed abilities or powers. This can be established by producing articles, videos, books, or other published material that specifically addresses the person’s abilities. Second, he/she must produce at least one signed document from an academic who has witnessed the powers or abilities of the person, and will validate that these powers or abilities have been verified.
    ( Also note that Mr. Randi does not give a formulation or a synopsis of anykind as to waht constitutes Paranormal )
    As a scientist my self even I know when building a experiment you must have a set of controls to test against . Mr Randi clearly lacks knowledge of the scientific process.

  24. flawed methodoligies and incorrect interpretation of data, any statistical deviations gleaned from so-called “psychokinesis” experiments are not influenced by the person, but are the result of chaotic outcomes of a probable system, PEAR was an embarassment to science, and anyone who doesnt think so is just insane, it is pseudo science of the worst order

  25. First the test for the loch ness monster was a bunch or bull they used sonar off a fishing boat going in circles all day. If that test was to be accurate the creature would have to be completely still for hours on end, not likely.
    Not saying there's psychics, even though it's more than likely possible, that if you had that ability would you really want all that attention, not to mention they would probably want to hold you in a lab and run tests on you for the rest of your existence just for alittle money, really who would do that.
    It is really ignorant to think that in all the universe that we were the only life in existence. The more likely situation is that there is intelligent life that's smart enough not to contact us because the way we tend to destroy our planet,each other and everything we come into contact with.
    The god helmet thing isn't anything special, there's numerous things on this planet and in out brain that can cause hallucinations and delusions. Just my own opinion (a lot of people agree with what i think) but seems pretty reasonable to me.

  26. You know what creeped me out a bit? Read the entry on The God Helmet again and then go read Lovecraft's From Beyond.

  27. Like when everyone had the consensus that the world was flat? All we have are theories, that can be debunked anytime with more theories.

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  30. Moronic statement. Hace you ever been to the moon? Do you know it exists then?

  31. Absolutely, Eddyg19. So come up with your own, better theories. Our current understanding of the universe tells us that the universe is most likely not infinite (finite). Science never says that we have all the answers. It is self-correcting, and it is this fact that makes science the most honest and trustworthy method of finding the truth that we have.

    YetAnotherAtheist October 31, 2010 at 3:42 am
  32. And what exactly are theories? Are they proof or just some guessing game from a scientific perspective?

    No one has been at the “edge” of the known universe. And what do we know about blackholes? Could they just be eating up all matter or are they portals/gateways to alternative universes?

    Until not proven, nothing can be told that it is so or no so. Sure things can be told not to exist but have they really been proven that they don't? Do we really have such advanced technology as to prove something like soul, spirits and so on? Alot of questions, barely any if at all any answers.

  33. 1. Everything must be paranormal, because nothing can be shown to be normal. No one has claimed the csicop award, but no one has claimed the award from CSICN.

    2. Lack of proof is not proof against. You hear me? It's not good science.

    3. It stands to reason that paranormal claims may not be provable via the scientific method or other materialist standards. It is super-natural, and para-normal after all. These phenomena may simply be unfalsifiable, but that in no way disproves them.

    EpistemologicalAnarchist November 15, 2010 at 6:52 am
  34. The common held notion that people believed the world was flat is a complete myth.

  35. The plesiosaur-like lake monster probably evolved to have gills. It's also been reported that they come onto land, possibly to hunt land creatures (reducing the need for a lot of food in the lake). They've probably also developed ways to stay hidden on land. An easy way to avoid humans would be to go through underwater cave systems and then pop up somewhere inland; out of a cave. I mean, unless a lot of time isn't enough time to evolve…

  36. Wouldn't the god helmet also disprove religion of any kind?

  37. Except for the minor little point that science says that the universe is NOT infinite, but rather is very finite…

    Ooops! :)

    Universeman2020 August 24, 2011 at 5:38 pm
  38. On the contrary, what it proves is that there is a part of the human brain that is attuned with God.  Why would humans evolve such an apparatus, if there is no God?  “To deal with stressful situations” hardly seems like a plausible explanation, when we already have the rather well documented “fight or flight” mechanism for dealing with stressful situations.  So how do you explain the existence of a part of the brain that senses God, if God doesn't exist?

    UniverseMan2020 August 24, 2011 at 5:44 pm
  39. I do not think that this is true…even if it was…its not worth it to reveal my annoying so called phycik abilities I have. I just keep it to myself and a select few people. Its nothing anyone would want…trust me. :) P.s I'm only 17 years old.

  40. Many articles that support the Paranormal and the Connection to the Normal.

    Google: Spirit Blog Vip

  41. I can take the prizes for proof of the paranormal if someone can set it up for me.I will sent one picture with email address if you cant tell what it is then get hold of me my email is hd81gunther@gmail.com

  42. One thing I would like to correct from the comments…science (as some kind of monolith) does not say the universe is either finite or infinite. There are different models that allow for both. What is known is we do not of the ability to see beyond the cosmological horizon, but that doesn’t mean that something isn’t or is beyond it. Some models even hold that other expansions could exist elsewhere in an infinite space.

    We shouldn’t be playing it off as if science says…

    Also it is a small detail when dealing with the problems with the Fermi Paradox, which relate largely to the assumption that intelligent civilizations would even have the possibility of communications with each other. Even if an advanced civilization existed on the other side of our galaxy imagine the difficulty in not only finding us, but actually communicating with us. It is a needle in a haystack issue, and it is legitimate to work from the perspective that yes intelligent life is statistically probable, while contact with anyone civilization would be improbable.

  43. Exposure to electromagnetic fields–something as simple as a fuse box with the door left open or a room surrounded by unshielded wiring–can lead to all sorts of psychological effects. These include a feeling of being watched, nausea, disturbances in balance, and yes….vague hallucinations or at least the sensation that one has seen something “out of the corner of one’s eye”.

    The “Ghost Hunters” TV series refers to this as a “fear cage” and has dismissed many claims of hauntings as the result of improperly installed electrical wiring, the presence of an unshielded transformer, or whatnot. Workers on hi-voltage transmission lines often experience peculiar phenomena during extended periods spent in the ionized area around a charged cable. In fact, if you stand under a high-voltage power line for a little while, the likelihood is that you will start to become very anxious.

    Also, if you go stand under a high-voltage transmission line after dark and bring a fluorescent tube with you, it will glow. Not ghosts, just that much electromagnetic energy given off by the power line. Can be a lot of fun if you like to pretend you have a light saber.

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