The first time I heard about Deepak Chopra was in Delhi, India, 1998. Someone was bragging about this desi guy who had made a name for himself in the USA and when my friend asked what does he do
“he writes superb books on how to live a meaningful life”
Me : “so another fraud sadhu (or guru)”
And my belief in that fact has not changed. Deepak Chopra is a fraud.
He speaks in a melancholy way that mesmerises you. And words that could win you 80 points on scrabble flow with that sing song voice that make you feel very, very smart. Until you start paying attention to what he actually is saying.
If you don’t want to listen to a Dawkins version. Here is a Chopra talking about how you don’t have to age as you grow old.
To me this sounds like what astrologers write on daily horoscopes. Lots of generic fortune cookie statements that apply to 80% of the population. Chopra does the same thing except he uses the words “quantum” which could literally mean anything!
And then when people call him on his bullshit, he throws a hissy fit. Case in point, this letter from Lara Stein, TEDx Director & Emily McManus, TED.com Editor. A simple letter stating :
There is no bright and shining line between pseudoscience and real science, and purveyors of false wisdom typically share their theories with as much sincerity and earnestness as legitimate researchers.
Then they continue to expand on this statement which pretty much excludes shamans like Chopra. The main part of the letter, I think, was :
Marks of bad science:
- Has failed to convince many mainstream scientists of its truth
- Is not based on experiments that can be reproduced by others
- Contains experimental flaws or is based on data that does not convincingly corroborate the experimenter’s theoretical claims
- Comes from overconfident fringe experts
- Uses over-simplified interpretations of legitimate studies and may combine with imprecise, spiritual or new age vocabulary, to form new, completely untested theories.
- Speaks dismissively of mainstream science
- Includes some of the red flags listed in the two sections below
The point of this letter is to ensure that nonsense is not give any promotion on TED’s platform. Anyone with a brain can see it. But our Sadhus printed this article on the purveyors of bad science The Huffington Post. First some gobble gook :
What the militant atheists and self-described skeptics hate is a certain brand of magical thinking that endangers science. In particular, there is the bugaboo of “non-local consciousness,” which causes the hair on the back of their necks to stand on end. A layman would be forgiven for not grasping why such an innocent-sounding phrase could spell danger to “good science.”
Huh? Re read this para carefully. What the fuck are they talking about? This is what really gets on my nerves. This kind of wording seems really smart and deep until you really try to understand it and then you realise that it is a huge cup of BS. Here is the crux of their argument :
TED finds itself on the wrong side of censorship, semi- or not. But this fracas actually opens a window. The general public — and many working scientists — isn’t aware that consciousness has become a hot topic spanning many disciplines, and its acceptability is demarked by age. Older, established scientists tend to be dead set against it, while younger, upcoming scientists are fascinated.
Freedom of thought is going to win out, and certainly TED must be shocked by the avalanche of disapproval Anderson’s letter has met with. The real grievance here isn’t about intellectual freedom but the success of militant atheists at quashing anyone who disagrees with them. Their common tactic is scorn, ridicule, and contempt. The most prominent leaders, especially Richard Dawkins, refuse to debate on any serious grounds, and indeed they show almost total ignorance of the cutting-edge biology and physics that has admitted consciousness back into “good science.”
These gas bags cannot prove that their theories are nothing but baloney, therefore, they think they are being muzzled! When I read the letter from TED, to me it reads that TED wants to IGNORE pseudo scientists. And that is what Deppak Chopra is…..a pseudo scientist who wants to be recoganised as a revered soul with a quantum mind.
And there was this :
But TED took the threat seriously enough that Anderson’s letter warns against “the fusion of science and spirituality,” and most disappointing of all, it tags as a sign of good science that “it does not fly in the face of the broad existing body of scientific knowledge.” Even a newcomer to science knows about Copernicus, Galileo, and other great scientists whose theories countermanded the prevailing body of accepted knowledge. Einstein believed in a static universe at a time when early proponents of an expanding universe were ignored, and the early reception of the now-popular “multiverse” theory was scornful. The greatest breakthroughs rarely come by acts of conformity.
Did these guys just compare themselves to Copernicus and Einstein? OMFG!