A question in a physics textbook I’m looking at:
A psychic conducts seances in which the spirits of the dead speak to the participants. He says he has special psychic powers not possessed by other people, which allow him to “channel” the communications with the spirits. What part of the scientific method is being violated here?
The answer is supposed to be that the results aren’t reproducible by others, but unless the psychic is claiming to be doing a scientific experiment, how is any part of scientific method being violated?
If the reasoning were valid, it would be valid even if we changed the nature of the claim itself. So rewrite it a little and see if it still makes sense:
A singer holds concerts in which words sung to musical accompaniment convey emotion to the participants. She says she has special performance powers not possessed by other people, which allow her to move the participants to a “standing ovation” whenever she sings a particular combination of words and notes bearing the title “People”. What part of the scientific method is being violated here?