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Are you afraid of the dark? Notes on the psychology of belief in histories of science and the occult.
Eur J Psychother Couns. 2016 Apr 02; 18(2):105-122.EJ

Abstract

The popular view of the inherent conflict between science and the occult has been rendered obsolete by recent advances in the history of science. Yet, these historiographical revisions have gone unnoticed in the public understanding of science and public education at large. Particularly, reconstructions of the formation of modern psychology and its links to psychical research can show that the standard view of the latter as motivated by metaphysical bias fails to stand up to scrutiny. After highlighting certain basic methodological maxims shared by psychotherapists and historians, I will try to counterbalance simplistic claims of a 'need to believe' as a precondition of scientific open-mindedness regarding the occurrence of parapsychological phenomena by discussing instances revealing a presumably widespread 'will to disbelieve' in the occult. I shall argue that generalized psychological explanations are only helpful in our understanding of history if we apply them in a symmetrical manner.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Churchill College & Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge , Cambridge , UK.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

27226762

Citation

Sommer, Andreas. "Are You Afraid of the Dark? Notes On the Psychology of Belief in Histories of Science and the Occult." European Journal of Psychotherapy & Counselling, vol. 18, no. 2, 2016, pp. 105-122.
Sommer A. Are you afraid of the dark? Notes on the psychology of belief in histories of science and the occult. Eur J Psychother Couns. 2016;18(2):105-122.
Sommer, A. (2016). Are you afraid of the dark? Notes on the psychology of belief in histories of science and the occult. European Journal of Psychotherapy & Counselling, 18(2), 105-122.
Sommer A. Are You Afraid of the Dark? Notes On the Psychology of Belief in Histories of Science and the Occult. Eur J Psychother Couns. 2016 Apr 2;18(2):105-122. PubMed PMID: 27226762.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Are you afraid of the dark? Notes on the psychology of belief in histories of science and the occult. A1 - Sommer,Andreas, Y1 - 2016/04/15/ PY - 2016/01/13/received PY - 2016/03/04/accepted PY - 2016/5/27/entrez PY - 2016/5/27/pubmed PY - 2016/5/27/medline KW - Erforschung von Übersinnlichem KW - Historiografie KW - Historiography KW - Parapsychologie KW - Pragmatismus KW - Psychologie des Glaubens KW - Wissenschaftsgeschichte KW - histoire des sciences KW - historia de la ciencia KW - historiografía KW - historiographie KW - history of science KW - investigación psíquica KW - parapsicologia KW - parapsicología KW - parapsychologie KW - parapsychology KW - pragmatism KW - pragmatisme KW - pragmatismo KW - psicologia delle credenze KW - psicología de la creencia KW - psychical research KW - psychologie de la croyance KW - psychology of belief KW - recherche psychique KW - ricerca psicologica KW - storia della scienza KW - storiografia KW - ιστορία των επιστημών KW - ιστοριογραφία KW - παραψυχολογία KW - πραγματισμός KW - ψυχική έρευνα KW - ψυχολογία της πίστης SP - 105 EP - 122 JF - European journal of psychotherapy & counselling JO - Eur J Psychother Couns VL - 18 IS - 2 N2 - The popular view of the inherent conflict between science and the occult has been rendered obsolete by recent advances in the history of science. Yet, these historiographical revisions have gone unnoticed in the public understanding of science and public education at large. Particularly, reconstructions of the formation of modern psychology and its links to psychical research can show that the standard view of the latter as motivated by metaphysical bias fails to stand up to scrutiny. After highlighting certain basic methodological maxims shared by psychotherapists and historians, I will try to counterbalance simplistic claims of a 'need to believe' as a precondition of scientific open-mindedness regarding the occurrence of parapsychological phenomena by discussing instances revealing a presumably widespread 'will to disbelieve' in the occult. I shall argue that generalized psychological explanations are only helpful in our understanding of history if we apply them in a symmetrical manner. SN - 1364-2537 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/27226762/Are_you_afraid_of_the_dark_Notes_on_the_psychology_of_belief_in_histories_of_science_and_the_occult_ L2 - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/pmid/27226762/ DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -
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