right this comes down to memory.....the trees were on a slope. i was stood at the very bottom of the slope, about a metre - no more than 2 metres - from the outermost branches on my side. 'as the crow flies' the fluffy ones were about 5 metres, probably less, from me. they were fresh, no sign of bones etc & still looking nicely meaty although i couldn't accurately discern the condition of their eye sockets
The freshness of the rabbits is consistent with rabbit being hung (perhaps by a technique your unfamilar with) or being placed as bait/lures.
Obviously the time since the event affects the accuracy of your memories though a certian amount of doubt can be placed even on fresh memories.
this may sound sad, but i stood there and traced the path of the branches; i wanted to make absolutely certain of it.
anyway, it's relieving to know i'm not the only fella with cuddly toys in his possession
...still haven't mastered this editing / quoting thing...
Tin Lizzie - why did your opening post have the preamble about your paranormal beliefs? It read to me like you were/are looking for a paranormal explanation for the rabbits rather than the less exciting mundane one it most likely was.
The preamble was there so people know which side of the fence i stand on.
If that's the way you wish to read it, it serves me no purpose to attempt to alter your perception. I do actually wish to hear what sceptics have to say - that way, i may learn something.
What I see in many of your posts (and this also goes for believers' position in general) is that you approach something unusual from the stance that it is paranormal in nature unless it can be proven otherwise. (Basically the fallacy: Argument to Ignorance).
Whereas skeptics (many of whom do not rule out paranormal explanations as a possibility) adopt the stance that we will look for normal explanations and will not contemplate the paranormal explanations until the normal explanations have been ruled out.
Believers have an a priori stance on issues: they believe it's all true and it's only a matter of acquiring evidence/proof to confirm this.
Skeptics take an a posteriori stance on issues: they will not accept that something is true unless evidence/proof exists to confirm it.
Of course, the skeptics' position is the logically sound one.
Then there's the issue of what constitutes evidence.
Skeptics want to see tangible or empirical evidence: evidence that can be checked by 3rd parties and which stands up to independent scrutiny. They are aware of the unreliable nature of personal testimony due to the undoubted fallibility of the human senses and perception and so will not accept personal anecdote as quality evidence no matter how honestly the claimant is making their claim.
Believers only need to 'see it for themselves'. This, of course, makes the invalid assumption that human perception is infallible. If they've seen it or experienced it for themselves then it must be true! Naturally, this is powerful 'evidence' on a personal level but that doesn't mean that whatever they experienced is objectively real.
And so to motivation.
Skeptics are looking to acquire knowledge: are these things real or not? If not, why do people believe them? Etc.
Believers want to believe (surprisingly)! They're constructing a belief system, often for emotional reasons, and all they're doing is looking to confirm their beliefs - not test them or question them in any serious way.
I guess the last paragraphs there explain why believers and skeptics can argue/debate all day and no-one really learns much from the opposing camp. We may be looking at the same issues but we do so for completely different reasons.
Anyway, that's how it looks to me from my skeptical position.
You are right (although I have on several occasions already stated that I find it difficult to be objective on matters of spirit) that I approach things which I suspect may have spiritual influence to the end of proving them as such, however this does not mean, as can surely see, that by default I intend to rubbish any alternative explanations. 'Argument to ignorance' does work both ways.
I see parallels here in the differences between certain religions; some believe in one god, and they have their own beliefs and ways of respecting their god, yet these days there are people from christianity, judaism and islam who believe that we all ultimately worship the same god.
It was a scientist who said 'science is as much about a study of what we cannot see as it is a study of what we can see'. Communicating with the spirit world involves senses that are difficult to describe let alone measure. How do you devise a scale for measuring love? How could you record the frequency at which a spirit's energy vibrates? Given the vast range in our own senses, how can two people ever possibly share exactly the same experience?
If you ask any true medium whether they know of or believe in the spirit world, the answer will be the former. This is hard to grasp for those who have not shared their experiences, pleasant or otherwise, and this will always be the root of the sceptics lack of 'evidence'. There are many fair logical questions, but as I have seen on this forum a person's logic may lead them to miss opportunities and discard potential knowledge on the assumption that it must be imaginary.
Being sensitive to spirit does not mean you have no sense of judgement. When communicating with my own guides, I am often all too aware of sensations, inner voices and thoughts which may easily be taken as 'spirit' talk. If I was to act on every sensation and listen to every voice, I would never have time to live my own life and my behaviour would be at odds with itself; my actions and thoughts would contradict each other.
You seem to think, as several others do, that 'believers' in some way look down on the sceptical community. Whilst I personally do pity those who can not at least acknowledge the possibility of spirit, I actually have respect for people who do not take things for granted and prefer to question things. Those are qualities which, believe it or not, I share with such people.
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