Psychologist, William James, wrote "I believe there is no source of deception in the investigation of nature which can compare with a fixed belief that certain kinds of phenomena are impossible."
It was taboo to say it, and it got some people angry at Bruce Klingbeil, but he said it: "Prayer is an abundant reservoir of testable thought."
Having the words "testing prayer" in the same sentence sounds oxymoronic or impossible to a lot of people. How could a prayer be tested? Prayer is an invisible belief.
Astrophysicist, Bernhard Haisch, said, "Advances are made by answering questions. Discoveries are made by questioning answers." In the Eighteenth Century, upon further discoveries of electromagnetism which is invisible, scientists had to admit that some things are invisible that science can test.
There are technologies that are good for us and technologies that lead us into bad scenarios. Who would deny that we are living in clicking links today? We click, click, click links which have become our reality routines. Our thumbs and index fingers are getting more exercise than any other part of us. Addictive technologies, such as virtual reality games and digital devices try to hack into our brains to manipulate us to keep coming back to do more clicks. Mankind should find new exceptions to dwelling on tech all day.
Spiritual inquiry and faith require quiet time and silence for the mind to study and ponder ideas. But addictive and noisy technologies have become the enemies of faith.
John Klingbeil said essentially, "Right now Spindrift is seen as a fiction. Of the innumerable scenarios for the future, a few scenarios should have some uses of technology that indirectly support faith. In such a tech supportive scenario, Spindrift could lose its foolish label and become an important avenue for finding linkages between science, religion, consciousness, and psi." What is psi? Psi means any psychic effect. Prayer is an example of psi. How is prayer psi? Prayer claims to produce an effect at-a-distance.
What was humorous to Bruce and John Klingbeil was an encounter with two scientists. In 1983, while residing in Palatine, Illinois, the Klingbeils and Bill Sweet presented the prayer experiments and data to two scientists who were skeptics of psychic phenomena. The Klingbeils read that the two scientists expressed an interest in the claims of the paranormal in a local suburban newspaper article.
Near the beginning of the conversation, the scientists pointed out that the issue of prayer's effectiveness had been settled over a century earlier. Francis Galton, a brilliant nineteenth century scientist and statistician, a cousin of Charles Darwin, had statistically checked on the prayers for the English Royalty. Many times a day, from all over England, the populace prayed rivers of prayers and affirmed, "Long live the King. Long live the Queen." The royal family had constant prayers directed toward them. Statistically Galton found that these royal prayers did nothing to give better health to the King and his family. In fact, royalty was sicker, had more trouble in childbirth, and lived shorter lives than other groups in the English population including other aristocrats.
The scientists said that Bruce and John were a century too late. If prayer worked, the Royal Family would have faired better than others with all those thousands of people praying for them. Prayer had no beneficial effects or the Kings and Queens would have been healthier.
Apparently, generational Royal inbreeding was expected to be overcome by citizen prayers in this Nineteenth Century experiment.
Bruce asked, "What was the control group?" Apparently, every one else in the English population was the control group.
What sent Bruce into laughter was that these two 'objective' scientists said prayer had no effect before they read a single word of The Spindrift Tests or The Cathedral of the Mind written by John Klingbeil. After the skeptical scientists did read the books, they maintained that there were so many flaws in the methods used that the data was meaningless. That a working scientist checked out the Spindrift methods and concluded that the methods were applied properly was dismissed as ignorance of science.
Bruce and John laughed about the prayer preconceptions the skeptics had upfront whereas Bill Sweet was pretty upset with the scientists. This objective exchange of findings was one time when Bruce and John had shown a better sense of humor than Sweet did.
In 1982 and 1983, there was a Chicago area skeptic who thought a Klingbeil experiment with yeast was a fake or at the least the experiment didn’t follow the rules of the scientific method. He was invited to witness the experiment in Palatine, Illinois. Upon seeing it played out, he had no further comment about the Spindrift lab experiment. He did say he would get back to us after digesting the Spindrift terminology and methodology. Sweet couldn't reach him on the phone again.
The Klingbeils worked with the premise that Quality effects followed from a holy way of living and thinking. If the effects of Quality thoughts could be argued to follow a holy way of living and thinking, the effects should suggest inductively to some observers that something holy is testifying behind the effects. (See A Journey into Prayer, page 370.)
Jesus Christ stresses this view of the goodness of Quality effects testifying back to a cause in John 10:38. Jesus said, "If I do [the works], though you don't believe me, believe the works; that you may know and believe that the Father is in me, and I in the Father." (Word English Bible) Jesus Christ seems to be saying that through intellectual observation, some skeptics can apply inductive thinking to find a way to acknowledge the potential open window for a divine Cause behind the Quality effects.
Write Bill at: firstname.lastname@example.org