I was in class tonight, and the girl who sat in front of me brought up the topic of how Sylvia Browne died (I have my opinion on how deplorable of a person she was, but I will not go into that, I think we are all aware) and of how sad she felt about it. My ears perked. First, the fact that she had any kind of emotional reaction upon hearing the news of her death is beyond me, but I digress. Then she proceeded to talk of how great she was. Ok, now first off, I know better than to try to have any sort of rational debate with someone who is so firmly planted in their delusional beliefs, but I couldn't resist. I asked her if she was serious. With conviction, she said yes......and heeeeere we go. I asked her why she would believe in psychics, which she promptly asked why I didn't. Well since proof, or lack thereof is on my side, I began to try to explain (as I slid Dawkins' God Delusion back into my bag, for I am reading it again).So this is what I found. I found that people find rational views of their beliefs pointing to the factual contrary, is intolerable. People have let their beliefs blind them from actual truth, I suspect for comfort reasons. I also found that when I try to have a debate with such people, that I resort to somewhat belittling ridicule. Which I will be the first to admit is neither constructive, nor attractive. I try to inject humor into my arguments to hopefully give them the point of view of how silly their belief is, which usually creates some sort of contempt. Walking to our vehicles she stated that I am not going to change her beliefs and that she had a personal experience with one that made her believe. I told her that there is definitely an explanation for all information she had received. Then I asked her how much she was charged. I also asked her to view stuff from James Randi, maybe to just think of the possibility that her position may be wrong.
As we were getting into our vehicles, she asked me if I had ever been to a psychic. I stated that I had not. She said I had no reason to have an opinion then. I don't need to let a rattlesnake bite me to know it is poison. Others have before me. And that poison is truth.