Help me convince my friends to stop beleiving in chi

Discussion in 'Off Topic Area' started by Thelistmaker, Oct 27, 2012.

  1. Thelistmaker

    Thelistmaker bats!

    I have some training partners who unfortunately haven't had as good an eduction as I have. There is one in particular who has many theories involving energy having properties it doesn't; such as being able to ingrain memories into landscapes or healing someone in a mysterious and unexplained way.

    I usually get arguments like: 'science has proven the existence of chi' or 'science knows very little about the human body.'

    I've been thinking perhaps giving this friend an introduction to thermodynamics might clear up the nature of energy for them a little.

    Do the members here have any suggestions?
  2. Hannibal

    Hannibal Cry HAVOC and let slip the Dogs of War!!! Supporter

    To be honest you won't change their view - you could refer them to one of the plethora of chi threads on MAP, but if chi is what they believe in you will find it hard to sway them

    The one question you can ask is why do you ascribe to chi those things that can easily be achieved without it?

    Personally I'd learn to live with it
  3. Fish Of Doom

    Fish Of Doom Will : Mind : Motion Supporter

  4. Dean Winchester

    Dean Winchester Valued Member

    Punch them and ask them to stop it only using chi.

  5. mattt

    mattt Valued Member

    I suggest you read the book how to make friends and influence people. Its underlying message is that to be the most successful in life you don't go around trying to change peoples minds by 'being better educated' than them you try to understand them and their point of view. Will be a game changer for you.
  6. Thelistmaker

    Thelistmaker bats!

    It's possible I may have to do this, but I myself have believed some silly things in my time and people managed to convince me to abandon many things using facts and alternative explanation. So I argue it is sometimes possible to change opinion.
    I know some of the people involved quite well and i think they may be receptive to good scientific arguments.

    To be honest, if I don't try some of them will get even more annoying.
  7. gapjumper

    gapjumper Intentionally left blank

    Just to play devils advocate...

    What if you were wrong and they were right? How could they convince you?
  8. Thelistmaker

    Thelistmaker bats!

    Being better educated means you have more of an understanding of a subject matter than someone else. if you have an extremely large pile of evidence suggesting someone's claims about how the world works are false, you don't need to 'understand' said claim - you know the best evidence suggests it is false.

    lets assume my training partners are aiming for true beliefs - if this is the case (which i believe it is) understanding what drives that person, their backgrounds ect, is not relevant to the debate - what matters is the idea being discussed.
  9. Thelistmaker

    Thelistmaker bats!

    by showing me something that could only be explained in terms of chi - or some sound objective evidence that chi exists and large parts of our known physics are wrong.
  10. gapjumper

    gapjumper Intentionally left blank

    Oh so you need proof! Good luck with that in MA.

    But you want to separate things that are chi only from things with no chi? Will that work?

    I'm not saying I believe at all, but looking for the light switch with your eyes closed will surely only lead to not finding it.
  11. embra

    embra Valued Member

    Well any serious discussion of what folk label 'Chi' is pretty meaningless without going into

    a) the original Chinese descriptions of Taichi/Hsing Yi/Bagua classics, their interpretations, their mis-interpretations (in translation and embellishments over some years) into English - just to get a tiny flavour (miniscule IMHO) of the context; then delve into notions of Traditional Chinese Medicine - and the complete failure of TCM to compete with Western Medicine - but at least this way you can gain a sense of what Chinese folk of the Taoist epoch were thinking of in order to describe physical phenomena with the 'chi' label - because there was no science or physiology

    Note:- even if well versed in classics, TCM , Taoist practices and epoch culture; 'Chi' is just a by-product mentioned in passing - but it captures the western mind for some reason.


    b) a mass of knowledge of Neurolgy and Physiology - like at least post doctoral PHd level - to explain nerve sensory feedback through the spinal structure to the brain and the resultant bio-chemistry and electro-chemical signalling to analyse the Brain's neurology and behaviour. Then maybe some knowledge of the subsequent bio-chemistry linking the brain's neural-feedback cycle described above to other parts of our physiology e.g. the autonomus enteric system and our endocrine system.

    Anything less than this combined level of understanding - on both fronts; renders discussions of 'Chi' as simply a complete waste of time i.e. bio-pixie plasma fairy stories.

    How many folk have this capability? - well I certainly do not.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2012
  12. mattt

    mattt Valued Member

    I am sure you think you know better, and feel the need to educate. But if you flip that around and assume you know less, and feel the need to learn you will be more successful in life.

    FYI this has nothing to do with Chi or my belief in it. I'll let you carry on with the thread and look forward to the innovative solution to this dilemma you face.
  13. embra

    embra Valued Member

    Can we rename MAP to ChiPlanet maybe?
  14. gapjumper

    gapjumper Intentionally left blank

    Or closed eyes planet if you would prefer?

    Being certain of anything in this world probably means you are missing the point...
  15. Mitch

    Mitch Lord Mitch of MAP Admin

    I have friends who believe all kinds of nonsense. Doesn't stop them being friends.

    They are probably having the same conversation about me right now with whatever bunch of online oddballs they hang out with.

    Unless they have enough of a life to be doing something more interesting on a Saturday night of course :D

  16. gapjumper

    gapjumper Intentionally left blank

    Or are out drinking and map'ing because the place is dull....
  17. Oddsbodskins

    Oddsbodskins Troll hunter 2nd Class

    By strikes.
  18. Mitch

    Mitch Lord Mitch of MAP Admin

    Chi blasts.

  19. gapjumper

    gapjumper Intentionally left blank

    In yo face!

  20. stephenk

    stephenk Valued Member

    Few things:

    1. Attacking people's beliefs by giving evidence that they're wrong tends to increase their belief in their original position. Even when the evidence is good and shows they are wrong. Turns out the brain isn't so much made to discover the truth as it is to win arguments.

    2. Intelligence and rationality are not as correlated as we'd like to think.

    There's tons of really interesting reading about this stuff, I'd start with D. Kahneman's work. In fact, he just came out with a new one "Thinking, Fast and Slow".

    In the end, you probably won't convince your friends, but you will learn a lot about some interesting parts of how we function as humans, and that knowledge is extremely useful in life.

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