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  1. #1
    Nips away your dignity Fluffywolf's Avatar
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    Default Religion, belief and sleep paralysis.

    [YOUTUBE="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YYzygu1ogrs"]Sleep paralysis[/YOUTUBE]

    There is so much going on in this video at the same time and it embodies the biggest dilemma of religion of the modern age. Even though this is just one example, I think it is a good example to talk about the big picture.

    What I get from this movie is that sleep paralysis as described in the movie is obviously a mental dream state in which it is possible to consciously move out of by force of will.

    The guy in the movie, however, uses it as a means to turn people christian. As he says the paralysis is in fact caused by real demons, and by turning to the Lord in your dream, you can break free of it, if you really believe. Which he may truely believe himself as well, I don't know, but that is beside the point.

    Even though he may be helping people off of their sleep paralysis (I'm not convinced he does, but lets assume he does for the sake of arguement). Can this really be justified? Even if he believes in this himself, his arguement is still just that they 'must be demons' because in lore all over the world they thought it was demons and ghosts and there is no scientific answer and most answers are guesses and you won't find two of the same answers. On what earth can that be considered an good conclusion?

    I think this movie is wrong on many levels and that it is not justified. His arguement is as scientific as saying all clouds are spirits because if you look very closely you can see images in them. Personally I say screw that. If you're religious and all, great, if you belief in God, that's your right! But where does one draw the line?

    What are other peoples thoughts on this?
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

  2. #2
    Nips away your dignity Fluffywolf's Avatar
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    Addition:

    I fear that these kind of convictions could cause people to remain, for a lack of a better word, dumb. Don't get me wrong, I'm certain the person talking in the movie has a respectable IQ, but what if sleep paralysis is a much more deepseated psychological problem, going far beyond the dream that is had and can actually cause many other problems as well, that maybe one day the scientific world can penetrate. Wouldn't it be prudent to keep a questionmark on the subject and keep looking for answers instead of labeling it demon-caused.

    That's aside the fact that it's being used for propaganda.

    I'm certain even most religious people would be able to stand with me on this one.
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

  3. #3
    Reason vs Being ragashree's Avatar
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    Fluffy, why the heck does it bother you so much? I don't see any harm being caused, and in fact as far as I can make out some people may be benefiting from his approach, at least if this is measured in pragmatic terms - that they are actually finding a way to alleviate their own distressing symptoms. Last time I heard it was a matter of simple personal choice whether people based their understandings of experience on a "scientific" paradigm, a religious paradigm, a new-agey spiritual paradigm, any combination of these, or something else entirely.

    You seem to prefer a scientific paradigm. In which case, good for you; but why should it matter if other people choose to view the matter differently and find explanations that are satisfactory and meaningful to them using something else? It's not like he's impeding science from looking into this or anything; there might be some legitimate cause for concern if he was.
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    Nips away your dignity Fluffywolf's Avatar
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    I'm saying that the fix might not be a proper fix at all without actual scientific belief. But by putting a conclusion on it, it will definately remove anyone from pursuing an answer that might be helpful on a much greater level.

    I don't care that he's 'helping' people, I care about the fact he thinks he has the solution whilest it might not be a solution at all.
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

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    Potentially effective ignorance is still ignorance. It's kind of like how believing that prayer will help can occasionally boost someone enough to bring them out of a dangerous illness, but will causes harm more often than not if it is used instead of antibiotics.

  6. #6
    Reason vs Being ragashree's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffywolf View Post
    I'm saying that the fix might not be a proper fix at all without actual scientific belief. But by putting a conclusion on it, it will definately remove anyone from pursuing an answer that might be helpful on a much greater level.
    Can you actually justify that, or is it just your opinion that an explanation which doesn't contain science = not useful?

    I don't care that he's 'helping' people, I care about the fact he thinks he has the solution whilest it might not be a solution at all.
    And what if it might not be the solution, but is nevertheless a solution? Would you then be so troubled by it?
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  7. #7
    Nips away your dignity Fluffywolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ragashree View Post
    Can you actually justify that, or is it just your opinion that an explanation which doesn't contain science = not useful?


    And what if it might not be the solution, but is nevertheless a solution? Would you then be so troubled by it?
    That's not what I'm saying.

    I'm saying that an explanation which doesn't contain science might not be useful.

    And if it might be a solution but stops people from looking into it more, we'll never know if it will be an actual solution, do we?

    Or are you going to bet on the off chance it is a proper solution based on uninformed observation?
    ~Self-depricating Megalomaniacal Superwolf

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    Reason vs Being ragashree's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffywolf View Post
    That's not what I'm saying.

    I'm saying that an explanation which doesn't contain science might not be useful.

    And if it might be a solution but stops people from looking into it more, we'll never know if it will be an actual solution, do we?
    I'm not really getting you here: who, exactly, is it stopping from looking into it more? It's not stopping science from looking into it more; and I daresay that if the people who actually have problems with the condition, who seem to be the ones targeted by this, find it to be an unsatisfactory explanation, they will be looking for alternatives in a while after all. And if they dofind it satisfactory because it makes the condition more manageable, and therefore don't go looking elsewhere, what is the problem? You don't like the fact that it has religious baggage attached and that it might end up with someone becoming a believer who wasn't before? That's as valid a choice on their part as your (implied) decision to prefer to put your faith in the scientific method isn't it?

    Or are you going to bet on the off chance it is a proper solution based on uninformed observation?
    Actually it may be an informed observation in its own terms, I think you're just assuming it isn't as you automatically distrust the paradigm on which it's founded for being a non-scientific one.

    I have at this juncture no particular opinion on what constitutes a "proper" solution, as we first have to determine what problem we are trying to solve before deciding whether a solution may be classed as adequate, and I'm not sure whether that's yet been done. I would personally be inclined to take a pragmatic approach and say that anything that has at least the potential to help improve the symptoms as being potentially helpful and therefore a "proper" solution; but I don't get the impression that this is what you're driving at.

    So far as I can see (this is a leap, but it's what I'd guess is at the bottom of this) you're getting offended by him because you're seeing it as as a theory of knowledge issue - that people's personal cognitive frameworks are going to be so disrupted by what you view as "false knowledge" if they accept his explanation, that it is going to skew their understanding of experience enough that they are necessarily going to be inclined to reject what you see as "true knowledge" in future. Am I at all on the right track here? If it's not something like this I'm not understanding you at all.
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  9. #9
    Wild Card Atomic Fiend's Avatar
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    I had sleep paralysis through most of preteen and early teen years, right along with night horrors. I assure you no amount of praying helped me and I did alot of it.

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