Quote of the day

There’s going to be magic in Britain on 6 March.

It is a proven scientific fact that thinking about something often causes it to happen. Some call this quantum physics. Others simply call it “faith.”

…and still others recognize it as the babbling of bilge-belching bliss-ninnies.


  1. Erasmussimo says

    I’m thinking that these nitwits will just go away. I’m thinking it very hard. I’m thinking it even harder…

  2. Erasmussimo says

    Oh, and “babbling of bilge-belching bliss-ninnies” will have to go down in history alongside “nattering nabobs of negativism”.

  3. Sven DiMilo says

    It’s a little misleading. The proven scientific fact is that if 100 or more monkeys think about something, then often somebody washes a sweet potato. The necessity of quantum physics for understanding the mechanism of this phenomenon is debated.

  4. H.H. says

    It is a proven scientific fact that thinking about something often causes it to happen. Some call this quantum physics. Others simply call it “faith.” We ask that you open your mind to joining in with a unique psychic force that will change our lives through the power of thought.

    Why would we have to “open our minds” to this possibility if it is already a “proven scientific fact?” Oh, right, because it’s bullshit.

  5. Wowbagger says

    It is a proven scientific fact that thinking about something often causes it to happen.

    Really? I just because I was watching Life on tv last night, and I thought it’d be nice if Sarah Shahi would turn up at my doorstep with a six-pack, some crackers (hah!) and a round of really good brie.

    So much for ‘scientific fact’…

  6. Ricky Gremlin says

    “We ask that you empty your mind to joining in with a unique psychic force that will change our lives through the power of thought.”


  7. H.H. says

    Wowbagger, they said often, not always. For instance, just a few minutes ago, I though it would be nice if someone scratched an inch on my knee. Then, like magic, my arm moved and scratched my knee. I guess thinking about something really can cause it to happen! For some reason I think these kooks meant to imply something more spectacular, though.

  8. Holbach says

    Crap, just when you think can it can’t get any worse, it gets even worse beyond comprehension. This has gone beyond the just amusing and ludicrous, and sunk into the depths of insanity. Can we imagine what has yet to come to light that we are unaware of but have an inkling of? How much more of this crap can a rational brain endure without exploding?
    Religion will never fail to boggle and make us gasp with disbelief.

  9. Wowbagger says

    H.H. wrote:

    Wowbagger, they said often, not always.

    Fair enough. I have to admit I spend a signifcant portion of each episode thinking about Sarah Shahi, and there are at least a dozen episodes of the current season of Life to be shown on Australian tv – so I’ll give it ’til then before I write it off completely.

  10. IceFarmer says

    I think I just crapped myself laughing and I know I’ve disturbed the other cubicles.

    Read the biography section of the webpage, you’ll laugh even harder than you did at the , um, assertions made on the main page.

    All they need to do is add other members like Xena, Warrior Princess, or Red Sonja’s magic using sisters and it’ll be complete!

  11. Knockgoats says

    Ha! And you Americans thought no-one could do stupid like you can! Guess the old country can still teach you a trick or two, after all.

  12. says

    That’s why the Pentagon lifted back in the ’60s when a whole lot of hippies and the like thought it into the air.

    It was sort of the grand experiment of woo, which surely had as much “mental energy” operating as one could get.

    Oddly, though, New Agers and Xians are usually willing to settle for much less than their leaders promised. You know, whatever is indistinguishable from chance and suggestion.

    Glen D

  13. Kate says

    Well, guys… It’s not like they could stop thinking about stuff and actually get off their lazy asses and *do* something, now is it? I mean, it’s IMPOSSIBLE to feed a homeless person, nurse someone who’s sick, contribute to a community center with time or money…. I mean, unless you sit around with your head up your ass just thinking about stuff, it’ll never get done!

  14. Desert Son says

    A friend of mine once remarked: “If the Psychic Telephone Network (or whatever it’s called) really works, shouldn’t they call you?”

    On 6 March I’ll be reflecting on something else:

    Dmitri Mendeleev.

    From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dmitri_Mendeleev

    Mendeleev made a formal presentation of his periodic table of the elements to the Russian Chemical Society (totally kick-ass band name, by the way) on 6 March 1869.

    On 6 March, I vote for opening minds to some interesting history, or some scientific pursuit, or some good art, or some wonderful music, or some great reading, or a spectacular sunset (weather permitting), or some volunteer work for a good cause, or laughing with your kids, or some delicious food shared in good company with friends and loved ones, or even just some peace and quiet for yourself.

    Hopes and aspirations welcome, as ever, with the understanding that you have to work to achieve hopes and aspirations, and even then, they don’t always happen! AKA: reality.

    No kings,


  15. Desert Son says

    Kate at #18 got there before I did.

    [3PO] “Curse my metal body, I wasn’t fast enough!” [/3PO]

    No kings,


  16. Holbach says

    I just checked the 2008 Britannica Year Book and it shows the latest population of the United Kingdom as 60,863,00, almost 20 million less than the lunatics claim. But what the hell, is twenty million more thinking brains going to make that much of a difference in levitation or bringing Europa close to our own Moon for study?
    I’m thinking about watching The Science Network right now, and sure as crap, that is exactly what I am going to do. I need a couple of hours with Dawkins, Harris, Dennett, Ramachandran, and other enlightened minds who have faith in quantum physics. Analagous to the denizens of Bloom County when they retire to the dandelion patch for surcease from the crap of the world. I’ll return when my brain has recovered from the “mass thinkers”.

  17. Sastra says

    By interesting coincidence, I just got done reading an old post by Kimball Atwood at the Science-Based Medicine blog, on energy healing — Touched by a Touched Healing Toucher.


    He reproduces an email one of the ‘Healers’ sent him, on an experiment very like this one — from, apparently, 1998.

    Here’s the Question: Can millions of people, focusing their minds on inner and world peace, heal the world in an instant? Can we, through scientific and quantifiable means, prove that we are indeed the creators of the world we perceive, and that by changing our perception, the world itself changes? This is “The Great Experiment.” It’s time we prove scientifically what the saints and sages have always told us that we are powerful spiritual beings with the ability to create a world based on the laws of love, instead of the rules of fear. With the help of scientists, we are about to put an end to doubt forever.

    The rest of the email is just as good. It even gives the steps to follow, for most effective wishful thinking.

    What’s particularly interesting is that the question of whether religion is, by its nature, outside of science’s ability to have any say on, seems to be answered here by a resounding NO from the religious side.

    I wonder what happened. Over 10 years — and yet the doubts remain.

  18. Atticu says

    “Bilge-belching bliss-ninnies”!!! “Bliss-ninnies”!!! Now that is some *good* epithet-age.

  19. ThirdMonkey says

    Do they have to do it on my birthday? *sigh*

    Desert Son @19 – I didn’t know I shared my birthday with the periodic table. That makes me feel better. Thanks!

  20. miketoons says

    “Numerologically this date is symbolic because the 3rd month, the 6th day and the 9th year are all multiples of 3 which is about balance – which is what we strive to achieve as humans. The time, 11.00am is a master number, or a powerful 2 (1 + 1) which is the duality of the inner and outer self, encouraging us to look within to find solutions.”

    I despair. But I’ll try not to pass it on.

  21. Helioprogenus says

    No offense to women, but those bitches on that website are just insane. Two of them are listed as scientists, as though it makes up for their idiocy. If they really were “scientists” can’t they be more specific? Further, supposedly they all have psychic powers. Great, another website full of delusional morons who think they have gifts that somehow make them special. Their only gift to the world is drawing a sharp distinction between a Poe and a sack of lying, credulous, shit-riddled, irrational, endovaginal ooze that they call a website. Try not to picture that too much, because if it’s as bad as their site, you’ll be upchucking your lunch till next Tuesday.

  22. PStryder says

    I posted a comment on the message boards over at /atheism on reddit.com asking what peer-reviewed papers I had missed demonstrating this ‘scientific fact’. Another poster gave me FOB’s e-mail and dared me to ask them, as well as asking who the quantum physicists on their staff were. So I did.

    No response frm “bliss-ninnies”.

  23. Tom Woolf says

    There is magic happening here in the U.S. on March 6th, too.

    “Watchmen” is opening! (YES!)

    At least my event WILL happen. :-P

  24. Baudi says

    That’s funny. I think about sex all the time and it hasn’t helped me get laid. I knew I couldn’t trust quantum physics!

  25. Alex says

    It is a proven scientific fact that thinking about something often causes it to happen.

    Sure. I totally agree. After thinking about something, planning, hard work, and execution, something usually does happen. If the people doing the thinking are intellectually sophisticated, that something can be awe inspiring, like landing on the moon. If they are not very sophisticated, you get things like a saddle on a mock-up T-Rex.

  26. says

    The site seems to show only having 3000 hits, and i bet a fair chunk of that are your readers. Thankfully as a largely non-religious nation us brits dont give too much credit to kooks (big exception being the anti-vaccine whack jobs), and we are much more likely to mock the living crap out of people that believe idiotic nonsense.

  27. says

    I decided to expand my great vodka experiment to include this. Now I have the power of God and the power of thought on my side to turn water into vodka. Surely it will work now… *sips* still water.

  28. Sastra says

    It is a proven scientific fact that thinking about something often causes it to happen.

    The woman who reviewed the book The Secret for Skeptic Magazine pointed out a very devious tactic employed by the woo-woos. Half the time “the power of positive thinking” was used to refer to the perfectly reasonable idea that, when you are motivated to work hard, and when you are optimistic and focused on a goal, you’re more likely to achieve what you want. You keep working and gradually earn enough money — to get what you want. People respond to your positive attitude (“I would be great at this job and I’m the one they will hire!”) — and you get what you want. You’re more alert and ready to notice any opportunities which come your way — and you get what you want.

    The other half of the time “the power of positive thinking” concept referred to the magical idea that your thoughts could manifest reality, and that the universe was like a giant catalog you could mentally thumb through and “pick out what you want” — and lo and behold it would happen. You get what you want, not by hard work and effort, but by magic. Think about a bicycle, and next thing you know, it’s on your doorstep, via the Universe to you.

    Those are opposite ideas. But they were used interchangeably, trading on superficial similarities in the language, so that the implausible idea could ride to respectability on the back of the plausible one. People were fooled. If one version makes sense, then the other one has something to support it.

    It’s similar to what so-called alternative medicine does, when it defines good nutrition, exercise, and things like massage, healthy lifestyle, and losing weight as part of “alternative medicine” — as if mainstream doctors have never heard of or advocated such things.

  29. PlaydoPlato says

    Well I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m gonna be wishing for a pony on March 6th.

  30. Zombie says

    If it were true that thinking about things caused them to happen, everybody that says stupid things like that about quantum mechanics would be magically beaten with hammers.

  31. Sven DiMilo says

    Kel (@#36), I have often wished for that same power. I wonder if the opposite change could be done, though: if I left a tumbler of vodka out in the sun, would the ethanol evaporate fast enough to leave something close to pure water behind?

  32. says

    “We ask that you empty your mind to joining in with a unique bullshit force that will not change anything through the power of doing nothing.”

    Even fixederer.

  33. John Morales says

    Holbach @12,

    Religion will never fail to boggle and make us gasp with disbelief.

    Probably so, but to be fair, this is just plain woo. Religion is institutionalised woo.

  34. says

    Great, they’re conducting their own experiment to discredit themselves so we don’t have to. Let’s hope they take good notes and have a well mapped out design of experiment. Otherwise they’ll just make shit up!

  35. 'Tis Himself says

    Dear Buddha, please bring me a pony and a plastic rocket…

    When I was a little boy I wanted a bicycle. I prayed to Jesus to give me one but year after year, birthday and Christmas after birthday and Christmas, no bicycle appeared. Then I realized that I should steal one and pray to Jesus for forgiveness.

  36. says

    Did you notice that A) they were incredibly vague-“if a bunch of people wish for something and have enough faith, some of the wishes will come through”. and 2) if everyone would stop what they’re doing and really ponder a particularly difficult problem at pretty much any time on any day in any year, chances are a solution would come to them.

    If you stack the deck they way they have, there’s no way they could miss. And, of course, if your wishes don’t come true, it’s because you didn’t have enough “faith”.

  37. Holbach says

    John Morales@ 45

    The theme of that meeting and action is based on faith as the article has plainly stated, “all of our faiths and beliefs”; clearly connotes a religious meaning of action to my reading and interpretation. As for me, all woo has an underlying religious smell to it, no matter what degree or outcome. Perhaps for you there is a hint of phlogiston and aether in the woo? Remember the smarmy inference on an earlier post?

  38. says

    The Secret is,

    these fucking people are loony toons.

    I’ve been thinking about this new lens I’d like to acquire.

    I’ve been thinking about it A LOT.

    When I mean a lot. I mean A LOT.

    Still no lens.

  39. John Morales says

    Holbach @50, indubitably both this and religion are magical thinking. I just consider it to be in a different category whereas you seem to equate all magical thinking with religion.

    I note that there is not one mention of “God” in the link PZ provided. Also, Some call this quantum physics. Others simply call it “faith.” seems to be an appeal to scientism, not to deism.

    Anyway, I shan’t argue the point further.

  40. eewolf says

    This is pure bullshit. Last night I was thinking really hard about nothing at all. Just a blank.

    Then the doorbell rings and guess who’s here?

    Sarah Shahi and she’s got a six of excellent dark with her. She also had some crackers and cheese… wtf?

  41. Holbach says

    John Morales @ 52

    The word “god” (note my lower case) was not used in the article, but the reference to quantum physics denotes a reference to scientism, and the reference to faith denotes a reference to deism. A binary reference, a binary connotation. You cannot dismiss the one in lieu of the other. Both were mentioned, therefore both were referenced.

  42. Rey Fox says

    It is a proven scientific fact that weasel weasel weasel. Well, that settles it, I believe it!

    Call me back when the power of thousands of Britons causes England to detach from Scotland at Hadrian’s Wall. Then I’ll renounce my atheistic ways and worship Garth Ennis. Oh wait, I already do.

  43. Lumifish says

    An amusing correlation I have noticed throughout my life: every single use of the phrase “proven scientific fact” or “scientifically proven” has INVARIABLY indicated nonsense. Science isn’t about proving stuff!

  44. says

    I went to the site, and for fun clicked through to view their site stats.

    This article has boosted their daily visitor count by about 1200%. You can imagine the excitement as they realise they’ve hit the big time! It’s really going to happen! See we thought about it and it’s coming true! Woooo!

    Then the comedown when they check on where the visitors come from and realise that all the new visitors think they’re kooks. Shame that.

    According to the counter on the front page they’ve had a grand total of 4606 visitors since the site’s been live.
    1292 of those were on Wednesday and of the top 10 referrers most were from this page (Each browser version gets it’s own entry), the others were reddit.com/r/atheisn and andrewsullivan at theatlantic.com) none of which are complimentary about their plans.

    The other numbers that struck me :
    Wednesday – total visitors 1292, First time visitors 1290, return/repeat visitors 2.

    and one of the repeat visitors was me… A ‘sticky’ site it aint.

  45. says

    Why March 6th at 11.00am?

    March 6th has been chosen as Faith of Britain Day because March is a time of seeing light emerging from the darkness of Winter, therefore emphasising hope in an unsure world. Numerologically this date is symbolic because the 3rd month, the 6th day and the 9th year are all multiples of 3 which is about balance – which is what we strive to achieve as humans. The time, 11.00am is a master number, or a powerful 2 (1 + 1) which is the duality of the inner and outer self, encouraging us to look within to find solutions.

    Are we totally certain that this isn’t satire? :s

  46. Snarky says

    “If they really were “scientists” can’t they be more specific?”

    They have Master’s degrees–in science!

  47. IAmMarauder says

    A little off-topic – but it is related because this has to be one of the best quotes I have read all day…

    First is Ray Comfort commenting about the upcoming “Vatican evolution conference”

    “The Vatican, in essence, is saying ‘Don’t believe Jesus or Genesis. Believe Darwin instead.’”

    Now for the funny – Bill Donohue got upset and wrote an opinion piece titled “The simple mind of Ray Comfort”, which has this beauty in it:

    Moreover, to say that one must believe in either Jesus or Darwin smacks of an inability to “think deeply” about the subject.

    ( Full article here: http://www.speroforum.com/site/article.asp?idCategory=34&idsub=127&id=18187&t=The+simple+mind+of+Ray+Comfort )

    I couldn’t help but laugh at the idea of Bill telling someone off for not thinking deeply enough…

  48. says

    I don’t know about Great Britain, but I’m hoping for some magic on March 6 at the movie theatre… where I’ll be viewing The Watchmen. w00t!

  49. David says

    I sent them an email asking for the references to back up the “proven scientific fact” claim.

    Could be interesting.

  50. Hugh Troy says

    “It is a proven scientific fact that thinking about something often causes it to happen. Some call this quantum physics. Others simply call it “faith.”

    I’m glad that such a thing isn’t scientific fact, but pure fantasy, given some of the things I think about.

  51. Widgetas says

    I can never understand this crap: The calendar numbers are arbitrary! And what clock are they using? What if some clocks are wrong? Does it matter that we have a leap year because the earth doesn’t have a ‘prefect’ 365 day cycle round the sun?
    Berks, the lot of them, although I shall be checking for rational reasons for everyone winning the lottery and multiple regrowing of limbs on 6th.

  52. Drosera says

    When someone uses the phrase ‘proven scientific fact’ you can almost be sure that it is not a fact, let alone proven.

  53. Widgetas says

    Drosera: I’m feeding the trolls. I’ve asked them to explain how they can claim scientific justification on the one hand then, in their ‘people’ section, claim that a scientist ‘saw the light’ (as it were) and gave up on science.
    Also asked them for citations on the proof part.
    I don’t expect a reply. Maybe I’ll get a message through the ether in early March…

  54. Christophe Thill says

    These people think they have some understanding of quantum physics. Doesn’t this disprove their theory?

  55. Widgetas says

    And I’ve just read above and seen others have done it already! Whoops. Still, great minds etc. Maybe we should all think of these people at the same time – Scanners springs to mind.

  56. Strangebrew says

    Amanda Hart

    [quote]Amanda dedicates her life to showing that everyone is designed to reach their full potential through workshops, classes and various groups…[/quote]

    Someone seems ‘designed’ for fleecing using woo woo!

    Angelica Marek

    [quote]Angelica is from North London. She was raised in a very harsh environment, however always knew that from a young age, she was being looked after by angels…[/quote]

    Looney tune woo woo promoter!

    Marlene Thompson

    [quote]Marlene is an incredibly conscientious and heartfelt lady working to help people keep their dignity and independence in their home environment…[/quote]

    Interfering woo woo obsessed busybody!

    Isabelle Bonnaire

    [quote]Isabelle a 40 year old Scientist from South London had a fascination as a child with discovering and unearthing evidence, which propelled her into the work she does today…[/quote]

    Started out okay… got sidetracked by woo woo!

    Lisa Elmore

    [quote]For much of her adult life, she worked as a Scientist until she discovered there was too much evidence to show there was far more going on in the Universe than she realised…[/quote]

    Science got difficult…it got easier to pretend in woo woo!

    Marjo Tapojarvi

    [quote]Her psychic senses came alive 7 years ago, however they heightened more so as her study path as a coach developed…[/quote]

    Started fleecing folks 7 years ago…then worked out she could fleece them extra good by pretending to coach them in woo woo!

    Laughing all the way to bank these witches be…!

  57. Liberal Atheist says

    I wish it would remain “secret”.

    Also, “bliss-ninnies” is totally going into my vocabulary.

  58. Drosera says

    Arguing with people like these, and with religious types in general, is like wrestling with Antaeus: they seem to get stronger each time they hit the ground. It is probably because by attacking them you make them feel superior. The more humiliated they are the better they feel. Where is Hercules when you need him?

  59. davem says

    Amanda Hart, 42 from Hertfordshire has appeared on ‘Britain’s Psychic Challenge’, hosted by Trisha Goddard on Channel 5…

    Ok, so that’s why we in the UK didn’t know that this was going on. We don’t listen to daytime TV on Channel 5. (Or any programme on Ch 5, come to think of it). Think unemployed, or bored housewife for their viewers. ..and Trisha as the poor woman’s Oprah.

  60. Ponder says

    Perhaps we should drop them a line to say that on March 6th, 11am (GMT) everyone who reads this site, and everyone that they know, etc., will be concentrating as hard as they can on making sure they fail. We won’t actually have to DO it of course, just let them think we are.

    I am reminded of the wackos who are convinced they can stop aging and live forever through willpower alone. When one particular smug new-aged waffle spouting loon appeared on the screen he invalidated his whole premise ‘cos I and practically eveyone I knew were wishing he’d drop dead right there and then.

  61. Widgetas says

    Ok, I’ve entered into a correspondence with a Ms Amanda Hart. My 1000 word second email just elicited this response:
    “I’m most appreciative of all this feedback and thank you once more for all your time and energy.
    Kindest wishes
    Amanda Hart”

    I don’t think I’m going to get anywhere here…

  62. says

    e-mailed them –

    “I’ve been thinking all morning about a world where people don’t exploit others using pseudiscientific jargon but instead work honestly together to create a better world. I’ve been thinking all morning of a world where instead of, in some day, a lot of people thinking “Gosh, wouldn’t it be nice if the world was good” then got up and went out of their front doors and did something good for other people to actually change the world. I’ve also been thinking for months about going to check my bank balance and finding it at £1,000,000 despite me not having made that much money. Any of that come true yet?”

  63. says

    On 11am on 6th March, I shall be sitting in a darkened room contemplating women with extremely large breasts. If enough of us do the same thing at the same time, who knows what might happen*.

    Are you with me? ARE YOU?

    * I should imagine we’d all lose our jobs.

  64. says

    I suspect their target of getting 80,000,000 Britons to take part (including over 19m imaginary ones) may be a little optimistic, since the site’s counter only shows 5400 hits.

    They have a point that 11.00am is a power number: 1+1 does indeed = 2.
    Unfortunately, the creator is 42, and everyone knows 4+2 = 6. Plus it’s on the 6th of the month, and the month is the 3rd of 2009 and 9-3 = 6. Hmmmm, 666. I think this woman is going to destroy the world. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

  65. says

    I’m feeling, psychically of course, that an awful lot of Brits will be thinking about gloom and doom at that very moment and that their economy will sink further into the mire as a result.

  66. Moggie says

    Has this grand experiment been vetted by an ethics committee? If you’re wielding the awesome power to change the world, and you haven’t sought consent from the people whose lives you’ll be changing, the ethical concerns are obvious.

  67. Widgetas says

    Ok, she’s not going to talk to me any more.
    Didn’t answer my question, and told me to look at it from a different point of view.
    “No experiments, measuring nor contemplating will give us the results that can be achieved which positive thinking and right ethics will achieve.”
    Hmm… sounds like a lot of arse to me.

  68. Ollie says

    Given the number of times I’ve thought about having relations with some of my attractive female friends, and how many times that’s worked out, I can assure you, thinking about it enough does NOT make it happen.

  69. Sarcastro says

    Some call this quantum physics. Others simply call it “faith.”

    I figure most people call it “volition”.

  70. Cambrico says

    Just for the Spanish speaking friends: babbling of bilge-belching bliss-ninnies = charla de sentina de bobos eructa bendiciones. Sentina = bilge, the lowest part of the ship where the liquids accumulate (yuck). I would like to think in a strong insult in Spanish but I am busy thinking about Pamela, …. let me see the door… nope, I have to think harder.

  71. Aphrodine says

    @JD #9:

    Sorry JD. I secretly wish that every person I meet has cancer just to counteract their wish to be cancer-free.

  72. marilove says

    Positive thinking is a good thing, I think, if only because it helps you stay positive and therefore makes it easier to deal with life’s punches. But there is not really more to it than that.

  73. senecasam says

    Two of these woo-woo’s both claimed to have been scientists!

    Apparently if they revealed what scientific field they worked in, they’d have to kill us.

    I’m already dying from laughing so hard.

  74. Barklikeadog says

    That’s why the Pentagon lifted back in the ’60s when a whole lot of hippies and the like thought it into the air.

    Glen didn’t you watch “Eagle Eye”? The Pentagone is firmly rooted down to the 36th floor isn’t it? That would take some very strong minds not on Pot to pull that out of the ground!

  75. John M. says

    It’s a wonderful idea and I dropped them an email to say just that (the contact addy is there under the “Contact” tab). Why don’t you all do the same, and mention your wish list as I did. Amputees will be particularly welcome, I’m sure.

  76. Rodger T NZ says

    Yes,yes It is a It is a proven scientific fact that thinking about something often causes it to happen, I think everyday about Charlize Theron dropping around to my house for a booty call, I`m getting quite worn out but I just can`t get her to stop . : o

  77. Sarah says

    @Matt Heath (#71) Exactly what I was thinking! If we just all think the same thing, we can take down the Archangel network and….yeah.

  78. jen says

    Great, they’re conducting their own experiment to discredit themselves so we don’t have to. Let’s hope they take good notes and have a well mapped out design of experiment. Otherwise they’ll just make shit up!

    Well, given that they seem to be saying on the one hand that if enough people have faith at the same time, they can collectively achieve something (Dr. Who shout-out?), while on the other hand saying that at the chosen time people should individually think about their individual problems, I really doubt this can be called well designed.

  79. andyb says

    I sometimes stare at a nice cup of tea. Magically my hand will reach out, pick up the tea and pour it down my throat. Thinking about biscuits can have equally rewarding outcomes.

  80. Paul says

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! That made my afternoon! Nothing’s funnier than a British woo-nut.

  81. JWC says

    Am I the only one who blames Fritjof Capra for all this nonsense? Before I understood quantum physics (and I’m stretching the term understood) I read his book and I was like Wow. Now I see all this wishing-can-make-it-happen misunderstanding of quantum physics as more BS that he’s responsible for. Unless someone else beat him to it? I’m sure someone back in the 30s took Schroedingers example and blew it out of proportion and started a cult. I’m just too lazy to look it up.

  82. J. D. says

    As far as I’m concerned the only “proven scientific fact” is that you will never hear an intellectually honest person say “It is a proven scientific fact that…”

  83. Die Anyway says

    Scaryduck @ 84: I prefer small breasts. Are we wishing at cross purposes?

    From the article: “It may help to say quietly or aloud “I have faith” while you are thinking about this difficulty.”

    It MAY help? Weasel, weasel. Of course, even “may” is wrong. I guarantee it won’t help at all.

    My big disillusionment with the “thinking about it will make it happen” especially in relationship to large numbers of people came with Woodstock (’69). A million people there maybe, but certainly in the hundreds of thousands, all chanting “no rain, no rain” and the clouds kept coming and the rain started falling. If the mind power of that crowd couldn’t turn the rain then there is no mind power. Those babbling bliss-ninnies don’t stand a chance. (yeah, I love that one too PZ.)

  84. faithless says

    I see one of them is a project manager for a Canary Wharf bank. (COUGH! hsbc COUGH!)

    I wonder how come her positive thinking didn’t avert the global financial catastrophe?

    Or at least, protect all her fellow bank employees…

  85. fatherdaddy says

    I’m thinking they are idiots. Look it works, they are idiots. Isn’t quantum mechanics wonderful.

    Why did they have to ruin my birthday with this crap. If they moved the time a little earlier it wouldn’t be my birthday, yet. I wonder if they could do it at 8:00 instead?

  86. astrounit says

    Bliss-ninnies throughout the land pay to watch The Secret, which takes the basic aphorism:

    1. “Lie about something often and one comes to believe it”

    and transforms it into:

    2. “Thinking about something often causes it to happen” (see first aphorism)

    slaps on the claim that “it is a proven scientific fact” (see first aphorism) so that they can make a convenient reference to “quantum physics” (see first aphorism).

    Because the producers know how to make a kazillion bucks from New Age bliss-ninnies who get jazzed up at the mere mention of the word “quantum” and swoon at anything that sounds vaguely familiar as an established fact (this sort of thing may be overheard frequently at any Starbucks in California: see first aphorism). And what do you know? It happened because they thought about it. Must be something to it.

    And this ‘bilge-belching bliss-ninnie’ (love that!) compares the same to “faith” as if it was a totally distinct alternative. (See first aphorism).

  87. says

    @Aphrodine #94:

    You said “I secretly wish that every person I meet has cancer just to counteract their wish to be cancer-free”

    Well I’ve got cancer and we’ve never met. Does that mean I’m the 100th monkey?

  88. Wulfstan says

    I was half-way through laughing at this then realised why the name Amanda Jayne Hart rings a bell.

    She’s one of the piece-of-work psychic predators who claimed to be getting messages about Maddie McCann and even went out to Portugal to ‘help find her’.