From: Cathy Reason <Cathym.nul> Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2012 12:26:27 +0100 Archived: Sun, 22 Apr 2012 08:33:38 -0400 Subject: Re: Ufology And Psychiatry - Summary >From: Eugene Frison <cthulhu_calls.nul> >To: <post.nul> >Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2012 10:56:18 -0500 >Subject: Re: Ufology And Psychiatry - Summary <snip> >>Psychologists on the other hand proceed from the premise that >>all human perception is unreliable. The purpose of all >>experiments is then to provide an ever-lengthening list of >>examples of unreliable perception. It matters not that these >>examples are largely artifacts - the premise dictates the >>conclusion. >This might have some weight if the premise that all human >perception is unreliable is false. But it's not. It has so much >backing it up that it's a pretty solid premise to start with. So it's a solid premise because it has a lot backing it up, and the evidence which backs it up must be ok because it's based on a solid premise. This is completely circular reasoning. >I don't know how you can argue that human perception produces an >accurate picture of reality. I'm going to repeat one of my >earlier comments: physics informs us that all matter is >constructed out of molecules, that molecules are composed of >atoms, that atoms consist of subatomic particles, and that >subatomic particles are energy - energy that is colorless, >odorless, temperatureless. Recent research indicates that these >quanta exist as ubiquitous fields of energy, are holographic in >nature, and are holograms projected from a higher dimensional >structure. Reality is based on interference patterns. Is that >what you see when you look at a tree, a car, or a dog? Because I >know I certainly don't. I don't know anybody else that does >either. You're confusing the limits of perception with its reliability. It's also true we can't see in X-rays or infra-red. We can't, unaided, see what's going on on the other side of the world. These are clearly limits to perception. But, we don't usually say that our perceptions are "unreliable" just because they have well-understood limits. It just means there is much more to the universe than we can see with our unaided senses. Similarly with an optical telescope. An optical telescope can't see X- rays or individual molecules either, but to call it "unreliable" on that account would be merely silly. Your reasoning here is the sort of thing I was referring to in my earlier post. You've collected together a ragbag of perceptual anomalies and inferred from these that human perception must therefore be systematically unreliable. >There is no such thing as red or blue light. There is a field of >energy composed of electric and magnetic vectors propagating at >right angles through space, of a frequency (rate of vibration) >that causes the brain to create the experience of red or blue. >There is no red or blue color anywhere in the electromagnetic >field itself. Now I think you're confusing the mechanisms of perception with the phenomenology. And it's true that the phenomenology of perception is something we don't really understand - hence the notorious "hard problem" of consciousness. It's also true that some people believe the same sort of functional approaches we use to understand the mechanisms of perception should also work on the phenomenology. I don't agree with this and believe it leads to all sorts of conceptual confusion, so to that extent, I think you have a point. But when it comes to the mechanisms of perception, what we really want to know is whether those mechanisms are reliable enough to extract from the world the information we need to survive in it. And that is pretty much guaranteed by natural selection. >What psychology does when it proceeds from this premise is no >different from what other fields of science do when they proceed >from a premise that they view as valid (having been well >established) in their field. It's true that all sciences involves assumptions. But in most sciences, these assumptions are stated explicitly and always subject to revision and test. It's true this doesn't always happen the way it's supposed to. The difference is that in psychology it hardly ever happens the way it's supposed to. Cathy Listen to 'Strange Days... Indeed' - The PodCast At: http://www.virtuallystrange.net/ufo/sdi/program/ These contents above are copyright of the author and UFO UpDates - Toronto. They may not be reproduced without the express permission of both parties and are intended for educational use only.
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