[ExI] Belief in maths

Ben Zaiboc bbenzai at yahoo.com
Wed Jul 7 07:54:39 UTC 2010

Mike Dougherty <msd001 at gmail.com> wrote:

> I posit that there are enough opinions suggesting 
> that it does exist to counter the
> opinions suggesting that it does not exist that 
> I will remain skeptical and reserve judgment.

Personally, I don't think it makes sense to weigh number or strength of opinions when trying to decide how likely something is, especially if it's an unusual something, and most especially if it's something that people are likely to have an emotional investment in.

But that's just my opinion.  You probably shouldn't count it or anything.

> Comparing the [non-]existence of psi with either gravity or
> dragons seems to
> have taken the analogy too far.

Well, the reference to gravity was just to illustrate a point about 'certainty'.  (Which relates to something I said earlier, about the meanings of words.  When Samantha says she's certain about the results of stepping off a cliff...

No, let me rephrase that. I can't speak for Samantha.

When I say I'm certain about the results of stepping off a cliff, I mean something different to what a victim of religion means when they say they're certain of god's love (or vengeance, or whatever).  The word "certain" has a different meaning.)

Dragons, however, seem to me to have roughly the same likelihood as psi.  At least, I'd be just as surprised if one was shown to exist as the other (well, actually it would depend on what kind of dragon.  I can think of some that are pretty plausible).

Ben Zaiboc


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