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commented on May 19, 2014
Let me start of by saying that I really like the fundamental idea of the Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS). That idea, as I see it, is to use science to explore the full capabilities and potentials of humans. This is such a positive and worthwhile idea. A big part of what makes it such a worthwhile idea is that, unlike so many New Age websites and quasi-religious institutions dedicated to the promotion of pseudoscientific quackery and unfounded fantasies, IONS is all about using a *scientific* approach to exploring human abilities. This means looking at the evidence objectively with integrity and without bias, and seeking out a credible, independently verifiable and above all a practical understanding of reality.
To put it another way, IONS attempts to be a small island of open-mindedness and possibility in a vast ocean of religious dogmatism, close-minded "scepticism", and New Age lunacy. So it dismays me to look at the IONS forum and see, time and time again, people making wild claims based on shoddy reasoning and with little or no reference to scientific research; to see certain posters explicitly ostracise certain other posters from certain conversations simply because those other posters put forward challenging arguments based on actual evidence; to see fantasist groupthink and confirmation bias not only abounding but even encouraged by some posters; to see the scientific method, and even the institution of science itself, ruthlessly and ridiculously vilified simply because the findings of science threaten certain posters' neurotic narcissistic beliefs about the nature of reality; and to see certain posters hysterically denounced and smeared just because they dare to have a different, evidence-based view.
I for one am determined to look the truth square in the eye, to see and accept it for what it is no matter how disagreeable I may personally find it. Because only when the truth is understood and appreciated can we really begin to make any progress. I will also do my utmost to make the IONS forum a place where science and reason receive the respect they deserve, in keeping with the spirit in which IONS operates.