Does it just need to feel good, or does there need to be something more?

To put it another way, can a scientist invalidate an experiment just because he doesn't like the result?

Is it sufficient to imagine that something is true, or do you require tangible truth?

Note: I define a valid idea as an idea that works (produces a desired result).

asked 23 Oct '09, 22:38

Vesuvius's gravatar image

Vesuvius
32.0k430186

edited 24 Oct '09, 19:38

1

Oh my god, what a monsterously gooood question!! This is going to make me really start thinking about all my IQ studies now hahahaha. This has to be one of the best questions posted.

(02 May '13, 09:23) Nikulas
showing 0 of 1 show 1 more comments

Scientists are supposed to be the gatekeepers between what people believe, and what is true.

It is unfortunate that scientists are apparently not held in the same high regard that they once were. That there are liars and cheaters within scientific fields is indisputable; there are liars and cheaters in every field. As long as there are incentives for cheating (money, power, prestige), there will be people who are willing to cheat. And that includes people in the spiritual/new age fields.

When I was growing up, it seemed that science could solve any problem. We were sending people to the moon, putting 300 horsepower in an automobile, and using atomic energy to produce electricity. Back then, you could build an electric motor out of wire and nails, or construct a radio with a cat's whisker, and feel like you discovered something. It seemed like there was nothing that human ingenuity could not accomplish.

Today, we know that there are problems that come with these discoveries: new forms of pollution, nuclear weapons in the hands of rogue states, and an uninspired space program, to name a few. Few scientists still perform pure research; instead they work for multinational companies making products whose sole motivation is to make a profit. It's not hard to imagine that, were the medical industries not saddled with inextricable conflicts of interest, that we would have found a genuine cure for cancer many years ago.

So it's not hard to imagine why scientists are not as well-respected as they used to be.

The act of scientific discovery is supposed to be a selfless one. Scientific research can be tedious; important breakthroughs can take years. In 1942 Robert Merton proposed the principles which should guide scientists as:

  • Communalism – Scientific results belong to the entire scientific community
  • Universalism –Anyone regardless of race, gender, nationality or culture can contribute.
  • Disinterestedness – Scientists should not mix their results with their personal beliefs or activism.
  • Scrutiny - Scientific claims should withstand critical scrutiny before being accepted.

The scientific method itself is the essence of objectivity and impartiality. To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry must be based on gathering observable, empirical and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of reasoning. The scientific method consists of the collection of data through observation and experimentation, and the formulation and testing of hypotheses (educated guesses about reality).

Scientific researchers propose hypotheses as explanations of phenomena, and design experimental studies to test these hypotheses. If the experiment produces the expected result, it is said to have validated the hypothesis. In order for the hypothesis to be considered a fact, the experiment must be repeatable; another scientist (perhaps in a different part of the world) must be able to set up and perform the experiment, and get the same result.

Because the belief of an expected result can sometimes affect the outcome of the experiment (especially in human studies involving medical treatments), double-blind studies are conducted. These studies remove the expectations of the scientists from the experiment by setting it up in such a way that neither the scientist nor the subject know whether a particular test subject is receiving the actual medication, or a placebo (a fake treatment with no medical effect).

In particle physics, the act of observing an experiment affects the experiment. The reason this is so is because, in order to observe a particle, you must bounce another particle off of it, which changes the trajectory of both the observer particle and the particle being observed. Through complex mathematics involving probabilities, the researchers work out what actually happened in the particle collision.

Some particle physics experiments, such as entangled particles, suggest an underlying order to the universe outside of our current understanding. Entangled particles can affect each other instantaneously over large distances; if you spin one particle, the other particle three feet away will spin in the opposite direction. There is currently no scientific explanation for this.

There are some people (including particle physicists) who look at things like this and ascribe mystical qualities to them. As Arthur C. Clarke once said, "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." But that doesn't mean it's magic. It just means we don't understand it yet.

link

answered 24 Oct '09, 19:20

Vesuvius's gravatar image

Vesuvius
32.0k430186

edited 24 Oct '09, 19:33

science itself is a belief system

(02 May '13, 02:05) ru bis

The whole basis of the belief in God is founded on faith in the unseen. And yes, I believe that scientists invalidate things they don't like all the time. For example, the pharmaceutical industry have tried many methods to reduce availability by denigrating the benefits of herbalism, homeopathy, vitamin therapy etc., God forbid that we might find something effective that has fewer side effects than what they produce. They forget that many drugs were first available as herbs for thousands of years. I treasure my copy of Mrs. Grieves Modern Herbal, the definitive book on herbs, which helped me through several things over time including M.E. or Chronic Fatigue syndrome as it is also known.

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

quote from a reviewer: ""Modern Herbal" contains much information about the "old" ways. Traditional approaches may be dated according to some folks, but for many of us, they do not have the "sell-by" date which permeates modern societyMany of the old remedies have never been subjected to the "scientific" testing of modern times or USDA approved. However, the curative and/or prophylactic properties of herbal substances have been known for centuries, and information about their uses has been handed down from one woman to another. I have been fortunate because I have had relatives who knew the old ways, and passed them along. (Like passalong plants.)

And, while modern pharmaceutical companies will not tell you this, they are 1) using old methods--only now you must pay big bucks and buy the plant extract over the counter as a perscription drug -- for example, Valium is derived from the root of the Red Valerian, Digitalis from the Fox Glove, and Poppy juice--well--you can still buy that on the street--it's called heroine; 2) testing the properties of plants used in folk remedies and marketing the stuff as fast as they can--Echinacea, and Ginger for example.

So, read the information in this REFERENCE book and form your own opinions". end of quote

I also have used this too, very good. Bartram's Encyclopedia Of Herbal Medicine Containing over 900 entries of general disease conditions and corresponding herbal treatments, this book covers: therapeutic action, 550 monographs of medicinal plants, and the properties of herbs and preparations such as inctures, liquid extracts, poultices and essential oils.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Bartrams-Encyclopedia-Herbal-Medicine-Bartram/dp/1854875868

http://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/news/features/booksofcondolence/4035970.Thomas_Bartram/

I used to go to some very good herbal stores in London, Like Neal's Yard remedies and Baldwin's - both famous for their expertise and range of herbs and over time more and more herbs were taken from the shelves because of EU directives and lobbying by pharmaceutical companies. They even tried to remove vitamin B from the shelves of health food shops but they were defeated by the outcry by the public.

link

answered 24 Oct '09, 02:02

Rebecca's gravatar image

Rebecca
2.2k314

"scientists invalidate things they don't like all the time. For example, the pharmaceutical industry..." These people are not real scientists. Real scientists look for the truth.

(24 Oct '09, 07:38) Vesuvius

Sorry to have to disagree, Vesuvius. The plain fact of the matter is that scientists lie like anyone else. Whatever discipline one practices, a person carries human nature into it, and by nature we sometimes lie. Besides, studies have been done that indicate just that. Check out the following: http://originalwavelength.blogspot.com/2009/09/do-scientists-lie-and-cheat_06.html You may decide to revoke a scientist's right to the title "scientist", but unfortunately, that doesn't change the facts.

(24 Oct '09, 08:17) John

Actually, I can understand what Vesuvius means and I agree - REAL scientists pursue the truth. Unfortunately, I think that many of them that are paid by agencies with agendas (such as the pharmaceutical industry),lose sight of that and it's become 'acceptable' because they are on the side of perceived modern thinking and old fashioned methods are regarded as outdated and, even more, not profitable for the industry! Pure science and profit often don't go together.

(24 Oct '09, 14:35) Rebecca

+1 for a good discussion.

(24 Oct '09, 17:50) Vesuvius

Thanks Vesuvius!

(24 Oct '09, 19:29) Rebecca

But you're just saying the same thing with different words, Rebecca. You're changing the label "scientist" to "real scientist" to differentiate between those who lie and those who don't. My only point is that scientists do lie and cheat. This is provable. If we say that disqualifies them from being called a "scientist", or a "real scientist", fine. But let's not obscure the fact that people who are practicing the sciences, and have been considered to be trustworthy because of the supposed objectivity of their discipline, may choose at some point to lie and cheat like others before them.

(24 Oct '09, 20:07) John

That they forfeit our trust at that point is a moot point. That they are no longer practicing their discipline as a "real scientist" is a moot point. That they were considered real scientists at some point is also true.

(24 Oct '09, 20:07) John

May I remind you, Rebecca, that you're the one who said, "And yes, I believe that scientists invalidate things they don't like all the time." That is, they lie and cheat. I don't disagree with either of you that they are then, de facto, disqualified from the designation "real" or "true" scientist.

(24 Oct '09, 20:26) John

and copied here: My personal stance is to look at the industry the scientist is in and then consider the stance of that industry. And Rani makes a very good point below. Let us also consider this - over the millenia scientists have been venerated and incarcerated for the work they have done, according to the agenda at the time. Some were accused of heresy, some were forced to see their life's work used to kill and maim millions in wartime. Others have brought us great benefits. However, I personally think that, once that person's work becomes commercial is when the scientist has to choose..

(24 Oct '09, 20:47) Rebecca

... between truth and commercialism. It's a bit like politicians - they may start out with an earnest desire to help better the world but once they are elected they find out what the REAL nature of politics becomes when they join the rest of their peers and the 'reality' of job. Toeing the party line happens in science and politics, and other disciplines too, I'm sure.

(24 Oct '09, 20:47) Rebecca

And in case I didn't make it clear in saying that I first consider the stance of the industry I meant that I don't trust scientists as a rule, unless they are pioneering new work of their own. I respect people like Einstein, Bohm, Pasteur, Marie Curie and others that explored new realities in science but not the ones that are involved in multi-billion corporations such as those working for Pfizer. Each category already has it's badge in my book - either free thinker or corporate slave.

(24 Oct '09, 20:48) Rebecca

To be fair, I guess is must be hard to find the money needed to do one's own research if one is a free thinking scientist in this day and age ...

(24 Oct '09, 22:11) Rebecca

No doubt. Thank you for your additional comments.

(25 Oct '09, 02:58) John

yes our thoughts influence our environment that is how "scientists invalidate things they don't like"

(02 May '13, 02:07) ru bis
showing 2 of 14 show 12 more comments

Well first, I wonder what you mean by valid. Sound? Well-founded? Effective? Authoritative? Indisputable? And do you mean valid for you alone or for everyone?

Not all "feel-good" ideas are helpful in the long run (or even the short run). Having sex or using drugs can be feel-good ideas, but both can have devastating effects. Feelings change with the wind. So ideally, I only use them to help "validate" ideas that have already been subjected to other forms of evaluation (as discussed in another answer).

I agree with Rebecca that scientists invalidate experiments all the time for self-serving reasons. So that kind of rules out tangible truths.

What about conscience? Just for fun, in recognition of the 38th anniversary of Disney World's opening in October, here is an answer from Pinocchio. When Pinocchio becomes a boy (as we are all in the process of becoming more fully what we can become), the Blue Fairy gives him these words of guidance: “You must learn to choose between right and wrong.”

Pinocchio: “How will I know?”

Blue Fairy: “Your conscience.”

Pinocchio: “What’s conscience?”

Jiminy Cricket: “Conscience is that still, small voice that people won’t listen to. That’s just the trouble with the world today.”

Blue Fairy (to Jiminy Cricket, kneeling before her): “I dub you Pinocchio’s Conscience; Lord High Keeper of the Knowledge of Right and Wrong; Counselor in Moments of Temptation and Guide along the Straight and Narrow Path.”

After this, as she's ready to depart, she says, "Now remember Pinocchio, be a good boy, and always let your conscience be your guide." Then Jiminy Cricket tries to explain about knowing the difference between right and wrong: "Now ya see, the world is full of temptation---they're the wrong things that seem right at the time, but, uh, even though the the right things may seem wrong sometimes, uh, sometimes the.. the wrong things..heh.. may be right at the wrong time, or, uh, vice versa. Understand?"

Jiminy Cricket's song follow (Give a Little Whistle/Always Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide).

Now, I said that was just for fun, but perhaps it helps underscore how confusing it is sometimes to decide what's right and wrong. If not feelings, does conscience work? I think we can all relate to times when we have known the right thing to do, but have not done it. So conscience is not foolproof either.

But maybe your question is not concerned as much with discerning what is right and wrong, but in determining whether anything is to be gained from following any "feel-good" idea. If that is your measurement of "valid", then any experience, "feel-good" or not, has the potential of bringing some benefit to our personal development. But a "feel-good" idea that is in harmony (vibrational congruence) with the positive, loving forces of life, is far more beneficial to advancing more quickly. This harmony can be determined by realizing what ideas can benefit yourself as well as others (not yourself at the expense of others) and should be confirmed by feeling right ("good") to you.

link

answered 24 Oct '09, 03:32

John's gravatar image

John
4.1k1937

edited 24 Oct '09, 05:18

"scientists invalidate experiments all the time for self-serving reasons." - They are not true scientists. True scientists believe what the scientific method tells them is true.

(24 Oct '09, 07:32) Vesuvius

"So that kind of rules out tangible truths." - How?

(24 Oct '09, 07:34) Vesuvius

"Does it just need to feel good, or does there need to be something more?.... Is it sufficient to imagine that something is true, or do you require tangible truth?" The belief in God requires us to have faith in the intangible and the unseen.

(24 Oct '09, 14:43) Rebecca

God is tangible to some people. There's a difference between having faith and knowing.

(24 Oct '09, 17:19) Vesuvius

+1 for a good discussion.

(24 Oct '09, 17:50) Vesuvius

So now should a scientist wear a badge that says either "scientist" or "true scientist"? Again, my point is that the outside observer cannot tell ahead of time whether a scientist is "true", "real" or a "liar and cheater". You can't know ahead of time which ones you can trust, and who will turn out to be untrustworthy. To blindly trust all who bear the title "scientist" (or "true scientist") is a mistake. It's okay to give them the benefit of the doubt, but we must be open to the possibility that it may turn out that they have lied or cheated.

(24 Oct '09, 20:17) John

My personal stance is to look at the industry the scientist is in and then consider the stance of that industry. And Rani makes a very good point below. Let us also consider this - over the millenia scientists have been venerated and incarcerated for the work they have done, according to the agenda at the time. Some were accused of heresy, some were forced to see their life's work used to kill and maim millions in wartime. Others have brought us great benefits. However, I personally think that, once that person's work becomes commercial is when the scientist has to choose...

(24 Oct '09, 20:28) Rebecca

... between truth and commercialism. It's a bit like politicians - they may start out with an earnest desire to help better the world but once they are elected they find out what the REAL nature of politics becomes when they join the rest of their peers and the 'reality' of job. Toeing the party line happens in science and politics, and other disciplines too, I'm sure.

(24 Oct '09, 20:30) Rebecca

And in case I didn't make it clear in saying that I first consider the stance of the industry I meant that I don't trust scientists as a rule, unless they are pioneering new work of their own. I respect people like Einstein, Bohm, Pasteur, Marie Curie and others that explored new realities in science but not the ones that are involved in multi-billion corporations such as those working for Pfizer. Each category already has it's badge in my book - either free thinker or corporate slave.

(24 Oct '09, 20:34) Rebecca
showing 2 of 9 show 7 more comments

Well I think we should consider something else first. In my opinion, the outcome of all scientific experiments is already decided before the experiments are actually conducted. The reason I am saying this is that when a scientist is conducting an experiment, he has an expectation of the end result and depending on how powerful his expectation is, he will get the end result he expected.

Let's say now another scientist comes along and conducts the same experiment with a different expectation. He is going to get a different result. My point is since the result of an experiment will depend on the scientist's expectation, then he has already changed the result to suit himself or others if that was his intention.

In terms of validating anything, whether it is a scientific experiment or any other idea, I feel that I have no choice but to follow the way I feel as there is nothing else that can be trusted as much. I have touched on this in some of my answers previously so I will not bore you with writing the same answers again.

This is my opinion.

link

answered 24 Oct '09, 07:30

Pink%20Diamond's gravatar image

Pink Diamond
28.9k52674

edited 24 Oct '09, 07:36

Scientific experiments in which the outcome is already decided are not scientific experiments at all. A hypothesis is not a decision about the outcome; it is an educated guess about reality. The purpose of a scientific experiment is to determine whether a hypothesis is valid or not. If the experiment invalidates the hypothesis, a true scientist will conclude that the hypothesis is false, and discard it.

(24 Oct '09, 17:35) Vesuvius

Note to self, learn to read - I agree that scientists usually set out with the desire to prove or disprove things with experiments and with expectations. That is how the controversy over the double slit experiment and Quantum Theory came about - scientists arriving at the conclusions that they expected but at odds with others who had arrived at a completely different one -light was seen by one set as particles and another as a wave http://www.space.com/searchforlife/quantum_astronomy_041111.html

(24 Oct '09, 21:00) Rebecca

Thanks for the link Rebecca.

(25 Oct '09, 09:39) Pink Diamond

Vesuvius, I was saying that it is the scientist's expectation and belief that determines the result and therefore whether the hypothesis is true or not. The experiment itself is irrelevant. But that's only my opinion.

(25 Oct '09, 10:28) Pink Diamond

yes feeling is all important, all "scientific" discoveries are achieved through an intuitive leap so to speak

(02 May '13, 02:10) ru bis
showing 2 of 5 show 3 more comments

No, there are defined set morals that must be adhered to.

We can not say do what feels good. Some people think, "It feels good to abuse women." Some think, "It feels good to steal merchandise from stores." Some think, "It feels good to pick pocket people." Some think, "It feels good to shoot people."

They are all wrong, it does not feel good, and it is wrong!

So no we are not allowed to just do anything that feels good. I think there was a Steven King movie like that called Impulse.

We can only do what is right, not what feels good, because most of the time what feels good is wrong.

People are addicted to drugs like pot because they think it feels good!

Paul Harvy 1965 If I Were The Devil. http://m.godtube.com/watch/?v=W7Y6G7NX

link

answered 02 May '13, 00:35

Wade%20Casaldi's gravatar image

Wade Casaldi
36.2k21692

edited 02 May '13, 20:56

2

I think the idea that what feels good is often wrong is a very disempowering belief. ;)

And for reference, people think pot feels good because it does, and just because it feels good doesn't mean it's wrong. =] I think any substance (within reason) can be utilized properly, and it's the addiction that's the problem. But we all have our vices. In my opinion food can be a worse addiction than drugs, it's all about the individual.

(02 May '13, 01:43) Snow

hi @Wade there is a big difference between feeling and doing, in the physical world we can dream of robbing a bank all day long but we'll never get arrested for it, it's only when you physically forcibly rob that you can get arrested.George Soros consciously used his "feelings" when he placed a 10 million dollar bet against the UK pound and won, he is now known as "the man who broke the Bank of England", and he did it legally - whatever we do we do to ourselves :)

(02 May '13, 02:29) ru bis
1

No, there (where?) are defined set morals (by who?) that must be adhered to (why?).

(02 May '13, 03:09) CalonLan

When a rich man gets robbed,it was the riches he has that drawn robbers to him.

When a weak man gets his ass kicked,it was the weakness which he displayed that drawn the attacker to attack him.

The higher you climb,the longer you may fall.

The people want to climb high,and they created these morals in attempt to stop the depths from making them fall into them.They created laws and blame the depth for their hard lands.

Life know no morals.It's a system of trickery and delusion created by man.

(02 May '13, 03:24) CalonLan

Sodom and Gamora were totally obliterated because the entire cities believed and did, "If it feels good, do it!" Rome fell because of similar practice. Today we are more awake, we are not influenced by demonic urges. Today thankfully people have decorum and would be ashamed of themselves for doing just anything that feels good. Who could have influenced "If it feels good, do it"? Satan. We wouldn't want to live where people are allowed to do whatever they want. If it feels good, stop that!

(02 May '13, 13:00) Wade Casaldi

Watch that "Impulse" trailer then tell me, "What feels good is automatically valid." There are people like that, drive by shooting road rage and more. Watch If I Were The Devil...

(02 May '13, 21:33) Wade Casaldi

No @Wade, we are not more awake, but we like to persuade ourselves of it. Neither those after us will be nor those before us were. We have more books and seminars, lessons and so called knowledge which we credit for this "awaking"...but knowledge doesn't help you wake up, it puts you deeper into sleep.

Maybe we are more capable than our ancestors, but exponentially we are more limited as well. In the end, the result is the same.

(03 May '13, 02:27) CalonLan
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