OST is closed for business but its spirit survives on my blog.
“not all evidence should be seen only as objective evidence. There is also experiential evidence.”
Science is a set of methods specifically designed for understanding experience. Scientific research consists of creating speciic kinds of experiences and investigating those experiences systematically.
Let’s say that, through subjective experience, you enage in some sort of relationship with God. This subjective experience presumably activates your neurons and synapses. Is it possible to investigate the source of this activation? If there are no readily identifiable sources of activation occurring from outside stimuli, then might not we hypothesize that God activates the neurons directly? Perhaps God activates some internal neurostimulus mechanism that’s difficult to distinguish from hallucination or imagination. Or perhaps God uses some sort of a remote transmitter operating on some frequency not detectable by existing telemetry recording devices but whose signals are picked up by our brain chemicals.
The Vietnam war happened: it was observed by many people; it was recorded in images and words. There are veterans of that war who have personal memories of that war that were observed by no one other than themselves. They experience psychological consequences resulting from those experiences that persist even today. Some of these vets at times mistake their surroundings for the Vietnam war zone and their loved ones as combatants in that war.
There are other people who claim to have been abducted by aliens and who suffer PTSD as a result. They have had personal private experiences of close encounters that cannot be validated by other observers. Some of them claim to have undergone operations on alien spacecraft in which receivers were implanted in their brains, allowing them to receive inaudible messages from the aliens…