Famous Psychics and the $1 Million challenge

Not too long ago, the James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) appeared on ABC’s Primetime Nightline where some famous psychics put their trickery up on display. It was obvious to most what was going on, the psychics knew before the show who they were doing a reading on, and … gasp … came back with information readily available via google, yet when asked to do a reading for others, declined with some excuse.

Read more

Sai Baba

The Times of India reports that  Sai Baba, one of India’s most famous Godmen, died last Sunday.

Now, to put this in context, he was listed by the Watkins Review as one of the 100 most spiritually influential people in the world (yea, I’m also bothered by that meaningless word “spiritually”, but worry not, the review itself does not mean very much, its just a bookshop review). OK, lets try a few more numbers. There is a claim that he had about around 6 million adherents, and his organization, the Sathya Sai Organisation, reports that there are an estimated 1,200 Sathya Sai Baba Centers in 114 countries worldwide. I’ll not quibble about these numbers, not because I think they are right, (I suspect not), but rather … I simply don’t care to quibble about such numbers. The fact that I don’t dispute is that he had quite a following, and apparently that included presidents and prime ministers from India and beyond.

OK, so lets put our skeptical hats on and take a quick tour.

Read more