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Jamie Clubb
Snr Member

Male Number of posts : 296
Age : 42
Job/hobbies : Coach/Writer
Humor : Groucho Marx, Tony Hancock, Bill Cosby, Billy Connolly, Paul Merton, Ricky Gervais
Registration date : 2008-06-20

PostSubject: Megalodon   Thu Aug 14, 2008 10:42 am

Okay, so what about the existance of a monster that most scientists agree DID exist. A monster that makes Jaws look like a salmon and strong theories have been put forward to support the idea it is quite possible that they still do lurk deep below the surface of the sea.

I wrote this passage in the Critical Thought section:

Quote :
There have been many times when I bought into something because I desperately wanted to believe. The idea was exciting. Take for example, the fun airport fiction novel "Meg". This science fiction thriller is all about the existance of megalodon sharks (60 or so foot ancestor of the great white shark) in the depths of the sea. The book made the argument that it was possible for megalodons to exist in thermal streams deep in the sea. I was fascinated by the idea, which was then given further dubious justification by the statement that is often banded about on "Discovery" programmes that 90 or so per cent of species in the sea has yet to be discovered. Such statements are like beacons for cryptozoologists! Later I looked up the megalodon in a scientific book written on sharks by a friend of my Dad's. My appetite was whetted by the author pretty much repeating the science put across in the book "Meg". So, I thought, the megalodon DID and still COULD exist. However, after this speculative aside the very sensible author went on to explain that no evidence whatsoever had been unearthed to indicate that megalodons lived longer than their estimated time of extinction. My excited mind added some futile resistance in the shape of - pardon the expression - red herrings like the fact we have only ever discovered 2 "megamouth" sharks or that we from time to time we find evidence of real "monsters" like giant squid and giant crabs. However, in the end the author won me over and helped re-click the sceptic button in my mind that was first triggered on my tenth birthday when I got my copy of "The Hamlyn Book of Facts and Fallacies" when he made the statement (paraphrasing from memory) "the truth is some people want to believe in megalodons". He went on to give comparisons found in cryptozoology. That pretty much did it for me. My sense of reason returned and it made me consider the whole idea of "want to believe".
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Male Number of posts : 346
Age : 47
Location : Ireland.
Job/hobbies : Combatives, Skepticism, Design.
Registration date : 2008-06-20

PostSubject: Re: Megalodon   Wed Aug 20, 2008 1:24 pm

Great post Jamie.

I was the same, I always wanted to believe far too much when I was younger. I think it has a lot to do with us as humans - having a very "vivid" and "big" imagination.

Another factor though that I believe that effects the human condition. Is that as our imaginations are so vast we see certain things like Big Foot, Loch Ness, UFOs etc. as nearly plausible or just outside or current belief system. So it tend not a huge leap for us to actually believe they exist.

But we have to remain objective, which can be hard at times Smile.

"Nearly existing" is not the same as existing.

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undercover sceptic

Male Number of posts : 520
Age : 45
Location : N.E. England
Job/hobbies : reading popular science, research.
Humor : Dry
Registration date : 2008-06-18

PostSubject: Re: Megalodon   Thu Aug 21, 2008 9:17 pm

OH YEAH' What about the baby alligator that got flushed down the toilet, grew to 30ft in the Manhattan sewer system and wreaked havoc on the city!

Explain that one wise guys! Laughing

Sorry couldn't resist im in a Twisted Evil mood lately, which is a pity for all true believers Laughing



Skepticism is the agent of reason against organized irrationalism - and is therefore one of the keys to human social and civic decency.
Stephen J Gould

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