Fancy some Team Spirit? On Saturday 15th October I’ll be contributing to this year’s QED conference . QED is a science and skepticism meeting in Manchester (UK) . I’ll be joining Prof Susan Blackmore (pictured) and @HayleyStevens for a panel called Team Spirit, exploring parapsychology and paranormal research. Keeping us in order will be Deborah Hyde (@jourdemayne , of werewolves, vampires, and The Skeptic magazine fame). As described on the QED site, “Susan Blackmore is Visiting Professor in psychology at the University of Plymouth and one of the most prominent early figures of the modern UK skepticism. Her personal encounters with perceived out of body experiences while studying at university led Susan to study the phenomena fully.” Sue’s 1986 autobiography Adventures of a Parapsychologist is a classic. Most recently, Sue has been writing about consciousness. Hayley is also a “Believer-turned-skeptic, with over a decade of ghost research under her belt, she examines strange sightings, photos, videos, sound recordings and more to determine their rational causes.”
Sue, Hayley and I were asked to come up with some possible questions to kick things off. Ideas include…
Has anyone ever tried to trick you?
What’s the most fun investigation into the paranormal you have ever done?
What’s the most depressing event you’ve encountered in paranormal research?
If there’s one paranormal phenomenon you’d most like to be true which would it be?
Is there any evidence for the paranormal that you think might possibly be valid?
Do you think belief in angels, spirits, souls, and life after death will ever go away? If not why not?
Is there any experiment you would love to do if only you had the time/money/ethical approval etc. ?
What advice would you give to a bright young student wanting to pursue a career investigating the paranormal?
Have you made any mistakes that have helped you to learn something about paranormal research?
Which paranormal researcher has inspired you most, and why?
What is the strangest thing you have experienced personally?
Has modern technology changed the way you research? For better or worse?
Are there any age-old stigmas you face regularly?
Let us know if you have any other ideas. There are just a few tickets left so you’ll have to move quickly if you want to join in. Hope to see you there!