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Author Topic:   Edgar Cayce --- Fraud?
Heart--Shaped Cross
Knowflake

Posts: 10861
From: 11/6/78 11:38am Boston, MA
Registered: Aug 2004

posted February 08, 2009 03:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Heart--Shaped Cross     Edit/Delete Message
Edgar Cayce (1877-1945)

Cayce "loved to have his patients boiling the most obscure roots and bark to make nasty syrups.
Perhaps the therapy was based on nauseating the victim so much that the original illness was forgotten."
--James Randi


Edgar Cayce (pronounced Casey) is known as one of America's greatest psychics. His followers maintain that Cayce was able to tap into some sort of higher consciousness, such as God or the akashic record, to get his "psychic knowledge." He used this "knowledge" to predict that California will slide into the ocean and that New York City will be destroyed in some sort of cataclysm. He predicted that in 1958 the U.S. would discover some sort of death ray used on Atlantis. Cayce is one of the main people responsible for some of the sillier notions about Atlantis, including the idea that the Atlanteans had some sort of Great Crystal. Cayce called the Great Crystal the Tuaoi Stone and said it was a huge cylindrical prism that was used to gather and focus "energy," allowing the Atlanteans to do all kinds of fantastic things. But they got greedy and stupid, tuned up their Crystal to too high a frequency and set off volcanic disturbances that led to the destruction of that ancient world. He made other predictions concerning such things as the Great Depression (that 1933 would be a good year) and the Lindbergh kidnapping (most of it wrong, all of it useless), and that China would be converted to Christianity by 1968. He also claimed to be able see and read auras, but this power was never tested under controlled conditions. However, Edgar Cayce is best known for being a psychic medical diagnostician and psychic reader of past lives.

Cayce was known as "the sleeping prophet" because he would close his eyes and appear to go into a trance when he did his readings (Stearn 1990). At his death, he left thousands of accounts of past life and medical readings. A stenographer took notes during his sessions and some 30,000 transcripts of his readings are under the protection of the Association for Research and Enlightenment. However, Cayce usually worked with an assistant (hypnotist and mail-order osteopath Al Layne; John Blackburn, M.D.; homeopath Wesley Ketchum). According to Dale Beyerstein, "these documents are worthless by themselves" because they provide no way of distinguishing what Cayce discerned by psychic ability from information provided to him by his assistants, by letters from patients, or by simple observation. In short, the only evidence for Cayce's psychic doctoring is useless for testing his psychic powers. Nevertheless, it is the volume and alleged accuracy of his "cures" that seem to provide the main basis for belief in Cayce as a psychic. In fact, however, the support for his accuracy consists of little more than anecdotes and testimonials. There is no way to demonstrate that Cayce relied on psychic powers, rather than the placebo effect, even on those cases where there is no dispute that he was instrumental in the cure.

It is true, however, that many people considered themselves cured by Cayce and that's enough evidence for true believers. It works! The fact that thousands don't consider themselves cured or can't rationalize an erroneous diagnosis won't deter the true believer. Gardner notes that Dr. J. B. Rhine, famous for his ESP experiments at Duke University, was not impressed with Cayce. Rhine felt that a psychic reading done for his daughter didn't fit the facts. Defenders of Cayce claim that if a patient has any doubts about Cayce, the diagnosis won't be a good one. Yet, what reasonable person wouldn't have doubts about such a man, no matter how kind or sincere he was?

Cayce's defenders provide some classic ad hoc hypotheses to explain away their hero's failures. For example, Cayce and a famous dowser named Henry Gross set out together to discover buried treasure along the seashore and found nothing. Their defenders suggested that their psychic powers were accurate because either there once was a buried treasure where they looked but it had been dug up earlier, or there would be a treasure buried there sometime in the future (one wonders why their psychic powers didn't discern this).

There are many myths and legends surrounding Cayce: that an angel appeared to him when he was 13 and asked him what his greatest desire was (Cayce allegedly told the angel that his greatest desire was to help people); that he could absorb the contents of a book by putting it under his pillow while he slept; that he passed spelling tests by using clairvoyance; that he was illiterate and uneducated. The New York Times is greatly responsible for the illiteracy myth ("Illiterate Man Becomes a Doctor When Hypnotized," (Sunday magazine section, October 9, 1910). Many of the myths were passed on unchecked by Thomas Sugrue, who believed Cayce had cured him of a disabling illness. In his 1945 book The Story of Edgar Cayce: There is a River, Sugrue asserts that it was Cayce, not the medical doctors who treated them, that was responsible for the cures of Cayce's son ("blindness") and wife ("tuberculosis").

One of the most common reasons given for believing in the psychic abilities of people such as Cayce is the claim that there's no way he could have known this stuff by ordinary means. He must have been told this by God or spirits or have been astrally projected back or forth in space or time, etc. Yet, Cayce's "psychic knowledge" is easily explained by quite ordinary ways of knowing things.

Even though Cayce didn't have a formal education much beyond grammar school, he was a voracious reader, worked in bookstores, and was especially fond of occult and osteopathic literature. (Osteopathy, in his day, was primitive and akin to naturopathy and folk medicine.) He was in contact with and assisted by people with various medical backgrounds. Even so, many of his readings would probably only make sense to an osteopath of his day. Martin Gardner cites Cayce's reading of Cayce's own wife as an example. The woman was suffering from tuberculosis:

.... from the head, pains along through the body from the second, fifth and sixth dorsals, and from the first and second lumbar...tie-ups here, floating lesions, or lateral lesions, in the muscular and nerve fibers which supply the lower end of the lung and the diaphragm...in conjunction with the sympathetic nerve of the solar plexus, coming in conjunction with the solar plexus at the end of the stomach.... (Gardner 1957: 217)
The fact that Cayce mentions the lung is taken by his followers as evidence of a correct diagnosis; it counts as a psychic "hit." But what about the incorrect diagnoses: dorsals, lumbar, floating lesions, solar plexus and stomach? Why aren't those counted as diagnostic misses? And why did Cayce recommend osteopathic treatment for people with tuberculosis, epilepsy, and cancer?

In addition to osteopathy, Cayce was knowledgeable of homeopathy and naturopathy. According to Dale Beyerstein, Cayce was one of the first to recommend laetrile as a cancer cure.* (Laetrile is chemically related to amygdalin, a substance found naturally in the pits of apricots and various other fruits, and is known to be ineffective for cancer.) Beyerstein writes:

Stearn (1967) summarizes Cayce's pronouncements on cancer. He reports that Cayce prescribed a serum made from the blood of rabbits for patients with "glandular," breast, and thyroid cancers, and in 1926, prescribed for a New York patient the raw side of a freshly skinned rabbit, still warm with blood, fur side out, placed on the breast for cancer of that area. "Animated ash," produced by taking bamboo fibers and passing an electrical charge through them, thereby producing the right vibrations for "life flowing effects," was another of his favorite cures.
Cayce also recommended "oil of smoke" (creosote made from pine tar*) for a leg sore; "peach-tree poultice" for convulsions; "bedbug juice" for dropsy; "fumes of apple brandy from a charred keg" for tuberculosis; and peanut oil rub to prevent arthritis (Gardner 1957). Gardner notes that Cayce recommended almonds to prevent cancer, but he makes no mention of laetrile either as a preventive or a cure of anything.

http://www.skepdic.com/cayce.html

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Aselzion
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From: North Andover, MA
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posted February 08, 2009 03:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Aselzion     Edit/Delete Message
Greetings...

Wherever there are "psychics" or astrologers or readers of any type and number, there will be detractors crying fraud.

I have witnessed many untrained people in Silva Mind Control and Laurie Cabot's Witchcraft as a Science class, diagnosing illnesses and injuries on people completely unknown to them, after having been given only the subject's name, age and location (city/state).

Anecdotal? Sure, why not? Strictly scientific? Absolutely not! But certainly convincing!

Jesus had his detractors, yet his cult still flourishes. And truly, what prophet has ever been taken seriously in his own land?

I think the very fact that there are errors or inconsistencies in Cayce's readings make him more human and less a "supernatural wonder child". If he can do it, if any ONE can do it, then it is possible for the rest of us. As I have stated many times before... we all work through our own instrumentality, and our own personal filters.

So he wasn't always right. Nor am I, nor are my Gifted friends, but the majority of the time, we see verifiable evidence of accuracy. Is this because we are mind reading? Is it because we are all One, despite the illusion of separation? Is the "prophet" seeing possible timelines? I don't know that the answers matter all that much.

Just my quick thoughts...

Blessings,

A

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"The ALL is MIND; the Universe is Mental." *** The Kybalion

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Heart--Shaped Cross
Knowflake

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From: 11/6/78 11:38am Boston, MA
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posted February 08, 2009 03:38 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Heart--Shaped Cross     Edit/Delete Message
Thanks for taking the time to reply.

But your reply was so prompt, I wonder if you read and considered the material.

Of course there will always be skeptics whenever fantastic claims are made, and that is as it should be.
You seem to suggest that being skeptical is "not taking the claims seriously", while I see it as just the opposite.

You say you've witnessed illnesses and injuries being diagnosed at a distance.
I would very much like to hear more than your claim, if you can provide specifics on this.


quote:
If he can do it, if any ONE can do it, then it is possible for the rest of us.

I wince every time I hear this.

So, if Michael Jordan can dunk a basketball, that means anybody can dunk a basketball?

Specious, at best.

I'm not out to denounce or detract, but I am in search of evidence capable of convincing a critical intellect.

I'm personally inclined to believe that psychic abilities do exist, but I want to know;
and even if I know, I will not accept all claimants as genuine psychics.

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Heart--Shaped Cross
Knowflake

Posts: 10861
From: 11/6/78 11:38am Boston, MA
Registered: Aug 2004

posted February 08, 2009 03:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Heart--Shaped Cross     Edit/Delete Message
Arthur Ford hoax

Arthur Ford (1896-1971) was a 20th-century clairaudient who set the stage for Sylvia Browne, James van Praagh, John Edward, Allison DuBois and the coven of other meretricious mediums currently making a mint from the bereaved and the gullible. Ford was founder of the First Spiritualist Church of New York (Williams 2000: 117). In 1929, he claimed to have broken a secret code that magician and escape artist Harry Houdini and his wife had devised to test the afterlife hypothesis. The code was the same one they had used when they'd performed together in a mentalist routine and was common among vaudeville performers.

Houdini died on Halloween in 1926. His wife Beatrice (Bess) offered $10,000 to anyone who could produce an authentic message from the spirit of her husband. Every Halloween for the next ten years she held a sťance, hoping in vain for Houdini's spirit to turn up.* Fletcher, the reverend Ford's "spirit guide," claimed to get the message 'forgive', not from Houdini but from Houdini's mother, on February 8, 1928. Bess wrote Ford that her husband had "awaited in vain all his life" for that word from his mother (Christopher 1975: 126). However, Ford's message need not have come from the spirit world since Bess had told a reporter for the Brooklyn Eagle in 1927 that Houdini had longed to hear from his mother and that any authentic communication would include the word 'forgive' (Christopher: 126).

In January 1929, Ford crony Francis Fast claimed that he brought word to Mrs. Houdini that Ford was ready to crack the secret code. She was not in the best of health, however. She had fallen down a flight of stairs a week earlier and was also battling influenza (Christopher: 127). A reporter, Rea Jaure of the New York Evening Graphic, described Mrs. Houdini as in a "semidelerium" from her illness and medications. Even so, she allowed a sťance with Ford in her home on January 8th. At that sitting, Fletcher claimed to have a message from Houdini: "Rosabelle, answer, tell, pray, answer, look, tell, answer, answer, tell." Fletcher explained that the decoded meaning was 'believe.' Bess verified the decoding before witnesses. Ford's Fletcher, still claiming to be speaking for Houdini, went on to repudiate Houdini's crusade to expose fraudulent mediums. Houdini's work apparently now done, he disappeared into the mist, never to be Fletcherized again. (Ford would not use Houdini again, but other mediums would invoke his spirit when it suited their needs.)

Bess Houdini publicly avowed that only she and Houdini knew the code. Yet, the code had been published the previous year by Harold Kellock in his Houdini, His Life-Story (Harcourt, Brace and Company, 1928). In any case, Ford and his cronies got Mrs. Houdini to sign a document "not in her own hand" stating that Ford got the message right (Christopher: 129). Her lawyer, B. M. L. Ernst wrote: "As to the alleged Ford message ... when Mrs. Houdini signed the paper to the effect that the message was genuine, she was confined to bed after a fall, had been taking drugs and was not in a position to know what she was doing" (Christopher: 130).

On January 9th, the day after the sťance, Mrs. Houdini was quoted in the New York World as saying:

I had no idea what combination of words Harry would use, and when he said 'believe,' it was a surprise.
She said she expected to get a ten-word message from Houdini but that she didn't know what the message would be (Christopher: 130).

On January 10th, Edward Churchill of the New York Evening Graphic declared the Ford sťance a monumental hoax and wrote that Ford had admitted that he got the secret code from Mrs. Houdini. Rea Jaure, who wrote the original article about the sťance, invited Ford to her apartment the next evening where she confronted him with the claim that she had a copy of a letter Ford's cronies had brought to Mrs. Houdini two days before the sitting and that it listed the ten words he had claimed the spirit gave Fletcher. Jaure, Churchill, and William Plummer signed sworn statements that Ford offered her money to "play ball" and admitted that he couldn't get the code from spirits. Churchill and Plummer, the managing editor of the Graphic, were in another room of Jaure's apartment where they could overhear the conversation.

Ford, however, issued a public denial, saying he never went to Jaure's apartment and that the story was a "blackmail attempt" to get Mrs. Houdini to cough up some letters from Charles Chapin, a former editor of the New York World who was serving a life sentence in Sing Sing for murdering his wife. Bess Houdini also wrote a letter, published in the Graphic, stating that she did not give Ford the code.

In the April 1929 issue of Science and Invention, Jaure's copy of the letter that Ford's cronies had brought to Mrs. Houdini was published, along with a diagram of Jaure's apartment showing where Churchill and Plummer had been concealed. Ford didn't pursue the matter any further and he didn't collect the $10,000.

Bess Houdini, on the other hand, "disavowed the Ford message countless times before she died in 1943," attributing her association with Ford to her "sick brain."

There was a time when I wanted intensely to hear from Harry. I was ill, both physically and mentally, and such was my eagerness that spiritualists were able to prey upon my mind and make me believe that they had really heard from him. (Christopher: 134)
Ford's literary executor, Canon William V. Rauscher, and his biographer, Allen Spraggett, found conclusive evidence that the Houdini sťance had been faked (Williams 2000: 118).

As a result of his "monumental hoax," Ford became the most famous medium in America. He became the darling of spiritualist retreats like Camp Chesterfield and Lily Dale. He duped many people, including Upton Sinclair, Bishop James A. Pike, and Ruth Montgomery. He was known for his extensive files containing information about potential clients. He'd begin his research with Who's Who and once he identified the school or college of a prospective client, "it was easy to get convincing information from yearbooks and similar publications" (Christopher: 144). Thus, he was able to convince many people that he knew things about them that he shouldn't have known. His clients, many of whom were desperate to make contact with a deceased loved one, were often not very critical and were too willing to accept Ford's claim that his information came from the spirit world. Ford may have been the hardest working medium in the business, but today's psychic media stars have shown that diligent research is unnecessary to dupe the modern spiritualist.

Ford's use of Fletcher the spirit guide to retrieve messages from the dead and his serious research into his client's backgrounds may seem to represent an evolutionary advancement over his predecessors, who had to rely on dark rooms, floating trumpets, and cheesecloth dripping from various orifices (ectoplasm) in order to prove to their clients that the spirits were stirring. Today's clairaudients may seem to have evolved even further, as they have dispensed with the intermediary between themselves and the gazillion spirits of the dead. They have also found that there is little need to know much about most clients in order to provide a satisfying reading. One could say, however, that Fletcher's clients were less critical than earlier generations of spiritualists, who demanded tangible, empirical signs that the spirits were present. It appears that the decline in critical thinking about these matters has accelerated to the point where all one has to do now to be a successful medium is throw out a token like 'trumpet,' 'hourglass,' 'Michael,' 'broken appliance,' or 'Miss Piggy' to evoke floods of tears or cataleptic bliss in some bereaved customer. Hot readings are unnecessary when clients are eager to please the medium and anxious to succeed in making contact. Throw out a token and watch the wondrous process of subjective validation take the client to another world. If even that task is too arduous, become a pet psychic. You can say anything and rationalize away any apparent errors without fear that some day you will be exposed as a fraud by your literary executor.

http://www.skepdic.com/fordhoax.html

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Randall
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posted February 17, 2009 05:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Randall     Edit/Delete Message
Not sure this is the right Forum for this.

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"Don't worry about the world coming to an end today. It's already tomorrow in Australia." Charles Schultz

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silverstone
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posted February 19, 2009 03:02 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for silverstone     Edit/Delete Message
Yeah, I think this fits more in UC.

I do think Edgar Cayce, during his last days, was invaded by an entity which prevented Cayce to give accurate readings. David Wilcock talks about this.

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Randall
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posted February 23, 2009 11:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Randall     Edit/Delete Message
Or in DD.

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"Don't worry about the world coming to an end today. It's already tomorrow in Australia." Charles Schultz

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Heart--Shaped Cross
Knowflake

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From: 11/6/78 11:38am Boston, MA
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posted March 01, 2009 12:19 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Heart--Shaped Cross     Edit/Delete Message
Through The Looking Glass

Tarot, Kabala, and other forms of Divination, including prophecies and predictions

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Heart--Shaped Cross
Knowflake

Posts: 10861
From: 11/6/78 11:38am Boston, MA
Registered: Aug 2004

posted March 01, 2009 12:20 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Heart--Shaped Cross     Edit/Delete Message
quote:
I do think Edgar Cayce, during his last days, was invaded by an entity which prevented Cayce to give accurate readings. David Wilcock talks about this.

Hmmm. . .

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LEXX
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From: Still out looking for SchrŲdinger's cat.........& LEXIGRAMMING... is my Passion!
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posted March 12, 2009 06:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LEXX     Edit/Delete Message

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Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain.

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Iqhunk
Knowflake

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posted April 01, 2009 05:31 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Iqhunk     Edit/Delete Message
Astrologically, Cayce has all the qualities of a powerful psychic.
James Randi's biggest weakness is he is unfamiliar with mathematical probability.

With probability, you can clarify what is miraculous and what is coincidence.
A lucky throw of dice is coincidence, 1/6.
Four lucky throws of the chosen number becomes 1/1296, somewhat miraculous.

Try it out. Try getting 12 in a row, it wont happen, it is one in a billion probability. If someone declares they will get this and they do, they have to have superconscious powers.

I would like any skeptic to calculate what is the probability of 6 normal English words above 10 letters each which are related directly or indirectly having the same mathematical value between 30 to 100 in any mathematical system.
My calculations show there are only 1000 odd normal words equal or above 10 letters.
It is difficult to get even 70 related groupings of 6 plus, many have just 3 or 4 long word synonyms or related words [though many smaller words may exist].
So the probability of 6 words mapping to the same number and being related is
70 x 1/70 x 1/70 x 1/70 x 1/70 x 1/70 x 1/70 or roughly 1/1,680,700,000 . One in a billion.

What is the probability that a normal bloke like me attracted these six words without using software [No software exists for this actually because skeptics do not believe in numerology] ?

The 6 related words are:
PHILOSOPHER
ENLIGHTENMENT
CONSCIOUSNESS
TRANSFORMATION
METAMORPHOSIS
TESTOSTERONE

They all equal 54 in the Chaldean Numerology system alone, centuries before the English Language became popular.

Is this coincidence or Divine Design?

Likewise, for the mind with true vision, all of Cayce's original works have credibility and have been verified by other psycics using Hypnotic Regression.
You cannot measure 4th dimension using 3rd dimension tools. There is no 3d proof for 4d stuff, and this is where Randi errs.
Skeptical Scientists have given us the modern medical system with millions of cancer patients and trillions of wasted dollars. Atleast with spiritual healing, we have a consistent 50% placebo effect that does not damage the patient, and all credit to Cayce for being a positive cause of change in this world.

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Randall
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posted April 06, 2009 09:59 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Randall     Edit/Delete Message
Wow.

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"Don't worry about the world coming to an end today. It's already tomorrow in Australia." Charles Schultz

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