Skeptic (Altadena, CA)

Magazine promoting scientific method, critical thinking and the skepticism of the paranormal and superstition.

Articles from Vol. 7, No. 3, Summer

Additional Predictions of Doom and Their Real Outcomes Include:
EDGAR CAYCE: The "sleeping psychic" from Kentucky put himself into hypnotic trances then tuned in telepathically to the minds and bodies of faraway people, diagnosed ills and prescribed remedies. He also looked into the future: Look for severe weather...
A Gallery of Useful Ghosts
Ghosts haunt people's imaginations all around the world. This collection of colorful spirits filled widely different needs for the people who invented them. ZAR (a kind of genie) a demanding spirit who attacks women. The spirit will depart if beautiful...
Alien Autopsy
Have fun and make your very own alien autopsy cake! It's great for a Halloween party or your birthday. My friends and I had a wild time dissecting my chocolate alien cake made with a glass alien head (sold in novelty stores as piggy bank), a big batch...
Apocalypse Never
THE SEARCH FOR IMMORTALITY As MILLENNIAL PHENOMENA THE HUMAN YEARNING TO LIVE FOREVER IS AN ANCIENT LITERARY theme, usually delivered with a castor-oily dose of warning: immortality is for the gods, not men. Greek mythology tells of the Cumaean...
A Skeptic in the Trenches
For a pilot episode for the new skeptics' television series Exploring The Unknown for the Fox Family Channel, SKEPTIC magazine publisher Dr. Michael Shermer walked on 1000-degree hot coals barefoot, and strapped himself into a motorcycle helmet equipped...
Celestine Profits
A CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF JAMES REDFIELD AND THE CELESTINE PROPHESY CHANCES ARE YOU OR SOMEONE you know has read The Celstine Prophesy. Since the book's publication in 1993, it has sold at an imposing clip, catapulting its author, James Redfield, into...
Creationists "Five Year Plan" to "Remove" Radioisotope Dating
IN A REVEALING AUGUST 1999 LETTER TO HIS FUNDAMENTALIST FLOCK, Institute for Creation Research President John D. Morris, wrote: Greetings from your fellow laborers here at the Institute for Creation Research. Wouldn't it be wonderful to remove the...
Does Pollen Analysis Say the Shroud of Turin Is Pre-8th Century?
A NEW ANALYSIS OF POLLEN GRAINS AND PLANT IMAGES on the Shroud of Turin is said to place its origin to Jerusalem before the 8th Century. This latest study gives a boost to those who believe the shroud is the burial cloth of Jesus and seems to conflict...
Donation Request
Here in Morocco the Skeptical movement is practically unknown. No books or magazines containing a skeptical viewpoint appear anywhere, not for sale or in libraries. If anyone has back issues of SKEPTIC magazine, or copies of books by James Randi, Carl...
Dumbth News
From This is True RABBIT TEST John Issa was ordered by a Painesville, Ohio, court to submit a urine sample for a drug test before his sentencing on a theft conviction. The test showed he was pregnant. The court, which could have given Issa probation,...
Evolution of Credulity Forum Debate
CREDULOUS OF CREDULITY Parejko's article on "Selection for Credulity" (SKEPTIC, Vol. 7, #1) was both interesting and offensive. Parejko presents no evidence that credulity is directly related to heritable traits, and his artide increases in offense...
Fc Forum Continues
STILL AWAITING ANSWERS ON FC GORMAN RESPONDS TO CROSSLEY Rosemary Crossley claims to have defended Facilitated Communication in her reply (Vol. 7, #1) to my article "Facilitated Communication in America: Eight Years and Counting," (Vol. 6, #3, 1998)....
How to Haunt a House
People love haunted houses. They are fun for the haunters as well as the hauntees. Haunting a house takes a lot of planning and it will be helpful if you have a few assistants hiding in the dark to help create the haunting effects. One very important...
More on JFK
POSNER AND GERLICH No SKEPTICS I'm not sure what angers me more--that Posner is so often disingenuous, if not dishonest, about the facts of the JFK assassination, or that SKEPTIC so credulously parrots his misrepresentations. Nick Gerlich, in...
News of the End of the World
WWW.ENDOFTHEWORLD.COM Here's a Web site no self-respecting skeptic should be without: http://www.armageddonbooks.com Blatantly encouraging people to capitalize on millennial fears this site explains: We're about to enter what should be the...
Noreen Renier's Latest "Psychic Sleuth" Triumph
Florida "psychic detective" Noreen Renier, whose involvement in the Williston Police case (see SKEPTIC, Vol.5, No.4, 1997, 52-57), made national news, has surfaced again. This time, although the local police would not work with a "psychic," the family...
PR Industry & Science Forum Debate
SIANO IS PAINFULLY CORRECT Regarding Brian Siano's analysis of the PR industry and science (Vol. 7, #1), I am painfully aware that many of my colleagues have become part of the "cult of the expert," wherein special interests use any Ph.D. who will...
Religion Prize Largest in World
In May of this year the world largest cash prize was awarded for the greatest contribution to "progress in religion." Whereas the Nobel Prizes in the sciences last year were $978,000 each, the Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion this year was...
Science Meets Pseudoscience
THE 1999 INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON SCIENCE AND CONSCIOUSNESS SOME YEARS AGO WHILE WORKING FOR THE LATE CONGRESSMAN GEORGE BROWN, Chairman of the Science and Technology committee, I often had to screen constituents who sought an audience with him...
Something to Crow About
THE CENTER FOR MILLENNIAL STUDIES THIRD ANNUAL CONFERENCE BATS A THOUSAND IF YOU'RE READING THIS, you're probably an owl. I know what you're thinking: Who, me? Yes, you. The Center for Millennial Studies says so. The CMS is an academic research...
Sun, Stand Thou Still
LET MYTH BE MYTH & SCIENCE BE SCIENCE MAKING THE ROUNDS ON THE INTERNET during the spring of 1999 was the claim that "scientists" (usually associated with NASA, JPL, or some major university), through recent and meticulous calculations, discovered...
The Alpha & the Omega
The Creation and the End in Biblical Eschatology YEARS AGO I WON A CREATION-SCIENCE MAGAZINE contest. My prize was Henry Morris's book The Revelation Record, which deals with the last book of the Bible and the end of the world. It makes a matching...
The Biggest Toughest Nastiest Monster Around
HOW HALLOWEEN HELPS US DEAL WITH FEAR HOW FEAR CAN BE FUN HAVE YOU EVER HAD FUN BEING AFRAID? Do you like to tell ghost stories or go trick-or-treating? One Halloween I took my four year old to a neighborhood haunted house. He seemed terrified...
The Fire That Will Cleanse
MILLENNIAL MEANINGS AND THE END OF THE WORLD We, while the stars from heaven shall fall, And mountains are on mountains hurled, Shall stand unmoved amidst them all, And smile to see a burning world. Millerite hymn, 1843 On a brisk April 29...
The God Forum Continues
GOD AS A DEFENSE MECHANISM I enjoy the articles and debates regarding the existence or nonexistence of God that have been featured in SKEPTIC. However, it seems to me that a belief in God is the ultimate defense mechanism, and this defense mechanism...
The History of Halloween
The roots of Halloween go back to ancient Roman festivals where sacrifices, prayers and food were offered to honor the dead. When the Romans occupied Celtic Britain many of these activities became mixed with the Celtic new year celebrations. What...
The Making of a Freud Skeptic
AN INTERVIEW WITH FREDERICK CREWs Frederick Crews was born in Philadelphia in 1933, and has spent most of his adult life in California. He received his Bachelor of Arts from Yale University, publishing in 1957 his prize-winning undergraduate thesis...
The Seance
Who do you need a Medium to Talk To The Dead? Suppose you came back as a ghost and wanted to contact someone you had loved. Would you choose to speak to them only through a complete stranger? Suppose you found that you were capable of making your...
"Th-Thats All Folks!"
IT'S THE END OF THE WORLD...AGAIN GOOD OLD JERRY FALWELL HAS INFORMED US THAT THE ANTICHRIST IS ALIVE AND WELL and putting the finishing touches on his end-of-the-world schtick. At a conference in Tennessee recently, the irrepressible reverend...
'Twas Brilling
Observations on a Bizarre World RANDI COMMENTS... KANSAS JOINS THE 16TH CENTURY We've all heard that Kansas has made a huge leap into the 16th century by deciding to officially disavow evolution, while the rest of our species prepare to enter...
What's Wrong with Extremism in Politics
THE TORTOISE AND THE HARE MEET AT THE MILLENNIUM THERE IS SOMETHING APPEALING about the claim that extremism in defense of liberty is no vice and moderation in pursuit of justice is no virtue; and the late Barry Goldwater is deservedly remembered...
World Survives the End Nostradamus Wrong Again
According to The Adelaide Advertiser, in an article by Ayala Goldmann of Kassel, Germany, the world has once again survived another Nostradamus doomsday prediction, this time with July or August, 1999 dates. Goldmann writes: With time running out...