Can we really be sure the paranormal is bunkum?

  • Michael Hanlon
Part of the Macmillan Science book series (MACSCI)


Like most people who consider themselves to be rational beings, I have a long hate list of tiresome beliefs, notions and lifestyles which I reckon consign a person to the dark side. This list includes the following:
  • all religions, whether organized or utterly chaotic

  • astrology, spoon-bending and other alleged demonstrations of psychic powers such as telepathy

  • any manifestation of the New Age, including talk of chakras, channelling, crystals and chanting

  • the ‘wisdom of the East’ and the ‘wisdom of the Ancients’

  • the healing power of whale music

  • aromatherapy, rebirthing and reincarnation

  • alternative medicine, especially homeopathy and really especially homoeopathy

  • essential oils

  • anything Ayurvedic or involving gurus

  • ghosts, fairies and, far worse, faeries

Collectively all this stuff brings me out in a rash. Indeed, I suspect that the barstool question ‘What star sign are you?’ is an excellent Darwinian adaptation hardwired into the mating strategies of the deluded to provide a signal to sensible folk to keep clear and protect the gene pool.


Dark Matter String Theory Question Science Parallel Universe Intercessory Prayer 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Michael Hanlon 2007

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  • Michael Hanlon

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