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 A Religious Approach

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Ian
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PostSubject: A Religious Approach   Sun 23 Dec 2007, 12:39 pm

To many people religion and the paranormal are intertwined. Do religious teachings help or hinder the investigation of the paranormal? Any thoughts?
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Red Don

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PostSubject: Re: A Religious Approach   Mon 24 Dec 2007, 4:15 am

Surely this depends upon the individual investigator, the teachings they follow, how they interpret those teachings and how devout a follower they are. As that clip under the Dangerous or Nutters topic shows, some people will see demons to blame and try exorcisms. I dare say some Spiritualists would go to a haunting case and try to communicate with the spirit rather than check to see if EMFs are present etc. They may even try to help the ghost or spirit rather than find out the mechanics of what makes it a ghost. But in these cases wouldn’t they be going to help, not do a thorough scientific investigation.

I think we should remember that some phenomena seems to be directly linked to religion, such as stigmata and the weeping Virgin Mary statues.
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PostSubject: Re: A Religious Approach   Fri 28 Dec 2007, 7:36 am

Good points Don. I suppose if you already fundamentally believe something to be true why would you waste time trying to prove it. It makes me wonder then about investigation groups who actively use spiritualist mediums (and yes, I have done so). Are they saying they believe ghosts are spirits and the medium is there to make contact?
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PostSubject: Re: A Religious Approach   Fri 01 Feb 2008, 6:31 am

I'm not sure a rigid belief in any religion is conducive to good investigation. However, I think when studying and trying to experience the more esoteric side of investigation - trying to "tap in" to the feeling of Stonehenge for example - it's important to try and suspend a rational approach and just "go with the flow".

I think this is a big part in paranormal experience in general - that's no necessarily to say that it's all in the mind, but rather a willingness to experience things without trying to analyse during the experience seems a productive mindset in some ways.

Our group are interested in apparent psychic phenomena, and have worked with people who term themselve psychic. We don't have any corporate belief structure beyond rationally appraising experiences and reports, and that includes studying alleged and/or apparent psychic ability. I think there's a useful line to be drawn between using "mediums" with set religious beliefs, such as Spiritualism, and people who simply claim to have some sort of psychic connection or talent. We've found using the latter to be a useful and productive approach.
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PostSubject: Re: A Religious Approach   Fri 01 Feb 2008, 6:53 am

Quote :
I think there's a useful line to be drawn between using "mediums" with set religious beliefs, such as Spiritualism, and people who simply claim to have some sort of psychic connection or talent. We've found using the latter to be a useful and productive approach.

I quite agree Matt. I think working with psychics who are open about their abilities, keen to understand them and who don't have established rigid beliefs is a good approach. However, I would not use them as a tool to investigate a haunting. I may use a haunted building or location as a site for them to attune to and help understand ther ability better.

Quote :
However, I think when studying and trying to experience the more esoteric side of investigation - trying to "tap in" to the feeling of Stonehenge for example - it's important to try and suspend a rational approach and just "go with the flow".

This takes me back to my Psychic Questing days Very Happy . Good times. Sometimes I think I am getting too skeptical Shocked .
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PostSubject: Re: A Religious Approach   Fri 01 Feb 2008, 10:27 am

I agree that you can't really use psychic "evidence" of any sort to orientate an investigation around, although it can be a useful supplementary tool, depending on the actvity reported.

Nothing wrong with a bit of psychic questing, either!
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PostSubject: Re: A Religious Approach   Fri 01 Feb 2008, 11:18 am

Too true on both counts Matt.

I think getting a good psychic in an investigation group is a good idea. If they are there as part of the group they are under no pressure to perform. If they come up with something fine, if not, well thats ok too. Anything they do produce can be classed as just anecdotal evidence for the case but will help establish an insight into their abilities.
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