Aaah! They’re Everywhere!

Questions from Evan, received in quick succession:

Impossible Story. Any explanation? Its pretty messed up. Over My Head: A Former Wiccan Tells Her Story

How do you explain this guy?

How do you explain this messed up video?

How do you explain this and all the other videos claiming people saw Steven Hawking in hell.

how do you explain this and the first 2 comments of the video?

How do you explain the show Sid Roth’s its supernatural?

How do you explain all the online testimonies of people seeing Jesus, getting healed by Jesus, and such. Their are miracle videos on YouTube and, gee, on those videos there is sometimes lots of people that comment and say that they saw Jesus too. I saw a video of a woman who got emotional after her vision got healed by Jesus. I’ve seen Muslims convert after miracles, people seeing atheists in hell, atheist seeing Jesus, faith healers. I don’t think God is probable, but these things, honesty scare me. I don’t want God to be real because then hell is real and such. I just want to live in a normal universe. How do you explain all these things.

How do you explain this video?

How do you explain the “Heaven is For Real” kid who saw heaven and saw things he could not possibly know?

In my heart, I know God can’t really exist. If He is all powerful and all good, evil should not exist. Some bible stories seem so much like old myths and others have God doing really bad things. All of it seems fake yet their are so, so many testimonies of atheists, Muslims, etc coming to Christ through miracles, such as videos on the YouTube channel, The 700 Club. Their are so many inexplicable miracles. How?

Stories of Hindus seeing Jesus and being healed. Doctor baffled. Easy to find these. Just, HOW?

Explain this:

Blood leaking from Jesus tomb?

Lady saw Pope John Paul ll burning in hell and was suprised. Also saw Michael Jackson. Fake? real?

Atheist asked God to wake him up at a certain time if He was real and he woke up at that exact time.

How do you explain the girl Akiane who was raised in an agonstic house an had a vision of heaven at age four. The boy Colton Burpo who apparently saw heaven said that her painting of Jesus was accurate.;=4405&start;=20 what?

Answer by SmartLX:

If you search for the specific names, I think we’ve covered some of them specifically already. But there are a few simple explanations that cover all of these.

  • Prior exposure to the mythology of Christianity (Heaven, Hell, angels, demons, etc.) helps to generate a dream or hallucination on the theme whether or not the person believes in it at the time. The agnostic girl, for instance, could have learned about Heaven from anywhere.
  • An episode of sleep paralysis, especially in someone who doesn’t know what that is, causes a hallucination which seems inescapable until the paralysis ends, at which point terror and panic give way to immense relief, and cement the whole experience in the subject’s memory as intense, emotional, physical and therefore “real”.
  • A dream, vaguely remembered, is altered in the subject’s memory on repeated recalls and retellings, especially when others ask leading questions about it. Children are particularly susceptible to this, and it’s the most likely explanation for Colton Burpo’s account.
  • A miraculous “healing” is not what is claimed; the initial condition was misdiagnosed, or is capable of spontaneously resolving itself without a miracle, or was psychosomatic, or never existed, or has not in fact gone away. There is almost never prior evidence of the illness sourced from the facility where it was treated, which is seldom named.
  • The whole story is fabricated specifically for the large, enthusiatic audience these claims always receive.

Evan, the burden is not on you to explain away every single claim you see or read about. The burden of proof is on those making the claims to establish verifiable support for them, and they never do. They don’t have to, because the audience is not stubborn nonbelievers, but rather believers hungry for reassurance in a world of justifiable doubt. This is why you see so many celebratory comments from believers on these videos, and often their own testimonies thrown in, and comparatively few skeptics.

Logically, you need to keep the concept of the argument from ignorance in mind. You are not forced to accept a claim if you personally cannot come up with an alternative explanation; “HOW?” is this fallacious argument in a nutshell. An explanation may exist which you haven’t thought of. A hypothesis with no direct evidence for it can only be established as fact if all other possible alternatives are eliminated, and that includes anything not yet hypothesised.

The next time you come across one of these claims, try out the following, in any order. This is basically what I do.

  • Re-read the explanations above. Without pondering likelihood too deeply, simply judge whether each explanation might apply to the claim.
  • Google the names involved to see whether any skeptical discussion already exists, or it’s all just believers trumpeting it without question.
  • Analyse the story to see what evidence is presented, or whether any real evidence is presented. Is it all just a personal experience that doesn’t affect or even reference the real world in any way? If any material claims or prophecies were made, how do they stack up to this list of explanations? If there was a healing event, what evidence is there that the ailment 1. existed in the first place, 2. isn’t there now, and 3. couldn’t have been treated medically?

Good luck. If you like, comment and let us know how you do.

4 thoughts on “Aaah! They’re Everywhere!”

  1. Hahaha !!!
    In hospital where I recently spent almost three weeks, I spoke to a theist woman, who gave the NOT existence of god only 5 percent. This is an achievement of a theist’s mind, very good percentage of NON existence of god, coming from a theist.
    She had listened to my Dawkins’ scale of religiosity, so, to its first question whether ‘I S. THERE GOD’, she said Y E S, but when I asked her ‘H O W .S U R E. OF IT SHE WAS’, she said 95 percent.
    I was happy to hear this, having thought I would hear a HUNDRED percent, and thought I have a fairly reasonable theist, person, before me, who had been deluded by different idiots around her, at her young age. as ALL theists have.
    But, then, she told me of her ‘miracle’ conception of a child.
    This was supposed to prove to me, as a darn atheist, that there is god. hahaha!!!
    She had found a man she wanted to marry only at her RIPE, MATURE, but NOT at all TOO ripe and mature, female age, for conception of a child, having in mind that menopause comes to most women at 50, not 35. I was conceived at my mom’s 35 and my sister at her 37. Quite common.
    So, she got engaged to this man of hers and started FUCKING, HAVING SEX.
    After her first sex with the man, or generally, I didn’t inquire on that one, or soon after, she chose ‘archangel’ Gabriel, I asked her WHY HIM, but not some other of his quite numerous brethren, or ‘god’ itself, or Christ, or ‘virgin’ Mary, she couldn’t answer even that. I let it pass.
    So, she then started PRAYING to the said Gabriel, the ‘archangel’, that he ALLOWS AND MAKES IT POSSIBLE TO HAPPEN, that she become pregnant, and
    OH, AH, UH,
    but .N O T. because she . F U C K E D . daily and nightly with her man, BUT because a particular Gabriel, of myriads of men that have had this name, but who never became a ‘saint’, for the simple reason that there is no such thing as ‘saint’, he alone let her become pregnant, made her pregnant, through her man’s sperm.
    But, who cares of her man’s sperm.
    So, when her daughter was born, she named her
    We, humans, are a funny bunch of animals, and only some of us deserve the name
    The rest are only one SAPIENS.
    If even that.

  2. Evan writes with his Wiccan link: [Impossible Story. Any explanation? Its pretty messed up.]

    Your woeful lack of detail in regards to your comment makes it pretty difficult to know what exactly you wanted to talk about in the article you linked us to. I am going to assume it was the story about the girl that had demons circling around her head. If you meant something else you will have to reply and let me know.

    In summary, the explanation is inanely simple. It didn’t happen. Oh sure, she might really think it did happen, but that doesn’t mean there were actual real demons actually circling her head. There is no evidence for demons and there is no evidence that demons circled her head. Maybe she was high, maybe she was dreaming, maybe she had a seizure, or maybe is a stone cold bald faced liar. We don’t even know if the person from Salem, MA in this story actually exists. You will notice there is no supporting reference for this part of the article, and it is entirely possible the author made her up (and her conveniently living in the same city where the Salem Witch Trials happened) in order to drive home their point. Artistic license I think they call it.

    Anything supplied as support for a claim or hypothesis should be doubt free, or at least verifiable by others. Nothing about that story fits that description, and therefore it should be dismissed as baseless nonsense and ignored.

  3. Evan writes: [How do you explain this guy?]

    He seems like a pretty nice guy, who has a pretty open mind when it comes to what god means. He points out specifically that he has always believed in god, but his definition of what that meant seems to change on a frequent basis. So his acceptance of Jesus isn’t really that shocking to me, given that he was raised Christian and has always been a believer in a supreme deity of some kind.

    I’m not sure what you want anyone to explain here.

    His claim that he was “sure he was in the presence of Jesus” is as verifiable as the Wiccan chick in your first link. If he wants to believe that then so be it, but there isn’t any empirical data supporting it. At that same moment he was experiencing that wind, I wonder why he didn’t think about the fact that somewhere a child was being raped by some sick fucker, and question why this god wasn’t there instead stopping it from happening. But hey, maybe that’s just me…

  4. Evan writes: [How do you explain this messed up video?] and [How do you explain this and all the other videos claiming people saw Steven Hawking in hell] and how do you explain this and the first 2 comments of the video?] and [How do you explain the show Sid Roth’s its supernatural?] and [How do you explain all the online testimonies of people seeing Jesus, getting healed by Jesus, and such] etc etc etc etc…

    The same way I explain the multitudes of people that have seen Bigfoot, or were kidnapped by aliens, or whatever…

    They are nothing but liars and con artists wanting attention and money.

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