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Old 12-14-2018, 09:53 PM   #5
Ellis Amdur
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Location: Seattle
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 913

Pretty harsh, Craig, but not well read on your part. I over and over again in that section refer to the idea of qi = elan vital as proto-science. I refer to it as so vague as to mean anything, imaginary powers such as pyrokinesis, or telekinesis. "The 'subtle energy' or elan vital model of qi can be a very poor androgogical model." I also state that misdirection and self-hypnosis lead the suggestible astray.

Essentially, you read the footnote, decided the entire chapter was new age nonsense and didn't read what I actually wrote in the chapter. I write: "The defintion of qi as a pervasive life force, however true it could conceivably be, on a macroscosmic and/or microcosmic level, is a poor method to teach skills in using one's body."

I've no problem learning from you that Schwartz and Beauregard lack credibility from neurologists. (although I suspend any final trust in any neurological theory until consciousness can actually be explained, but nonetheless, I take your point that if these two men's writing is proto-scientific itself, I should be less enthusiastic about their assertions). But your dismissing Schwarz because he resides in an 'intelligent design,' community, which you then parenthesize as 'creationist' is somewhat shabby, in my view. Creationism, the claim that the Biblical account is inerrant (God planted dinosaur fossils in the ground to test our faith, etc) is one stream of intelligent design thinking (and a rather primitive one at that) but I doubt very much that is what a Buddhist former Jew conceives. And even so, guilt by association is not scientific critique either. Heisenberg worked for the Nazi's, but that doesn't disprove his physics.

Again, if these two writer's have not grounded their assertions in science, well and good - a footnote best not inserted, but that has very little to do with the thesis of the chapter which is: reliance on elan vital theories will not really assist most people in learning internal strength skills.

Last edited by Ellis Amdur : 12-14-2018 at 09:56 PM.

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