Here some of my questions: one, two, three, four. Why are these questions so downvoted despite being on-topic? What insights should I gain from this for potential future questions I may want to ask?

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    I feel like we have spent a lot of time personally explaining the problems with your (and your alt's) questions.
    – Oddthinking Mod
    Commented Sep 21, 2020 at 8:22

1 Answer 1


I'm not one of the (current) downvoters on any of those questions and I can't speak for all of the downvoters, but based on comments I've seen on your questions there are a few reasons you could be receiving the downvotes:

  • In two of the three questions you linked here, you have only provided various videos and articles containing a number of claims, rather than providing a specific claim via a quote or a timestamp. Because of this, you're either asking users to just trust what you're asking about is a notable claim, or asking them to watch an hour of linked videos to try to figure out the exact thing you want answered. This could give users the impression that you're just asking these question to get them to watch the videos, rather than to actually get an answer to your question.

  • In all of those questions, you're asking something that we likely can't provide a meaningful answer to. Each of the questions is about a claim of divine/supernatural intervention, and those sorts of questions have three possible answers:

    1. There is a mundane explanation that could apply - Answers addressing this will mostly consist of "it's impossible because..." which isn't very satisfactory nor will it likely change anyone's mind
    2. The divine/supernatural is real - This something people have been researching for millennia, and I doubt we'll finally be the ones to crack the case
    3. The claimants are lying - we could disprove some of the claimants, but there will always be more who provide less evidence of dishonesty
  • Your comments on the few answers you've received make it seem like you already have an answer in mind that you're looking for, and won't accept any other. In the third question you linked here (about claims of spontaneous prosthodontics), you have two answers:

    • The first answer provides the mundane explanation for how gold is formed naturally, and why it's impossible for it to form in people's mouths (see option 1 in my last point). In response to this answer, you said that this answer only addresses "known mechanisms", and that "gold teeth may still be spontaneously appearing at faith healing services by other (unknown) means". If you're not satisfied with an answer that addresses what is known about the physical world, then that suggests you already have a supernatural explanation in mind and are just looking for a confirmation.
    • The second answer addresses one of the people who claimed they had a spontaneous gold tooth appear in their mouth, providing evidence it was done by a dentist and a confession that the claimant was lying (see option 3 in my last point). As expected, after being shown evidence one person was lying, your response was essentially 'but what about everyone else?'. As I said before, we'd be able to disprove some number of the claimants, either through dental records or confessions, but there will always be more whose medical records aren't publicly available, and who will provide nothing but their word. For every answer like this you'll always be able to say 'but what about this one?', which again gives the impression that you're looking for a certain answer and will accept no others.

In short, you're asking questions that we can't satisfactorily answer, are linking a lot of videos/articles without saying how they're important, and responding to answers in a way that suggests you won't accept anything less than supernatural evidence. All of this gives the impression that you're asking these questions just to spread these claims rather than see them explained or debunked, and this could be why you're receiving the downvotes.

However, clearly there is a way to ask at least some of the types of questions you're interested in in a way that is well-received by the community, and receive answers that thoroughly address the claims. After the mixed response to your first question you re-asked it on the Psychology SE site, where it got many positive votes and received several well-written, thorough answers. Those answers are the sort of thing you could see here on Skeptics (assuming users here had the same psychology expertise, of course), so the only real here issue was the way you asked the question.

If you limited future questions to a single, specific, explicit claim (for example, 'this person claimed to feel a burning sensation' vs 'here are 16 videos of people claiming stuff'), and if you appear more willing to accept the fact that most of these questions will likely have boring/unsatisfactory explanation, then that could help improve the negative reputation that you seem to have gained.

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    "Your comments on the few answers you've received make it seem like you already have an answer in mind that you're looking for, and won't accept any other" with respect to this, it is just that I try to point out limitations in answers whenever I see logical flaws. But that applies to both yes and no answers (it just happens that I've only received no's). If someone posts an answer saying "yes, it was supernatural", but the arguments provided are poor, I will critique that answer too. Anyways, thank you very much for the feedback. I'll use more explicit quotes in future questions.
    – user56618
    Commented Sep 21, 2020 at 0:42
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    I have explained several times that no-one will ever answer "yes, it was supernatural", because there is no way to do so with natural science. As soon as it becomes studiable with empirical methods, it is no longer supernatural.
    – Oddthinking Mod
    Commented Sep 21, 2020 at 8:26
  • @Oddthinking: you are technically right, but I think the situation is not black or white. There may be valid gray answers, e.g. "we can empirically verify that X happened, and there is no way X can be explained with modern physics, this doesn't prove the supernatural, but I won't deny that it makes it look like a very appealing option", where X could be a empirically verified case of someone receiving several spontaneous gold dental prostheses that were not there before, for example. That also applies to amputated limbs regrowing, objects paranormally levitating, etc.
    – user56618
    Commented Sep 21, 2020 at 16:02
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    @SpiritRealmInvestigator: that would not be science and would not be accepted as an argument by a skeptic.
    – Oddthinking Mod
    Commented Sep 21, 2020 at 20:51
  • @Oddthinking: follow me in this thought experiment: if we conduct an experiment and verify that someone didn't have gold teeth before and afterwards the person does have gold teeth, and we are 100% sure that in no moment a dentist intervened the person, wouldn't that constitute scientific evidence that gold teeth spontaneously appeared (even if we don't know an explanation for how)?
    – user56618
    Commented Sep 21, 2020 at 21:04
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    @SpiritRealmInvestigator: You can always come up with thought experiments that leave magic as the only reasonable option, but just because you can imagine a situation in your mind doesn't mean such a situation has ever or will ever happen. If what you describe is the sort of evidence and answers you're expecting to get, then I doubt you'll ever get an acceptable answer here (unless some users are unexpectedly deific, of course).
    – Giter
    Commented Sep 21, 2020 at 21:20
  • @Giter I agree, but back to the gold teeth question, if one hypothesizes that magic is false, an obvious prediction of this hypothesis is that all cases have to be hoaxes, which can be tested empirically. However, doing so can be overwhelming and practically unfeasible. Instead, I recommend to follow a sort of statistical approach: sample a representative subset of cases, and diligently investigate each one. If all sampled cases are proven to be hoaxes, then one could assume with certain level of confidence that all remaining cases are probably hoaxes too.
    – user56618
    Commented Sep 22, 2020 at 2:47
  • @Giter an answer like that would satisfy me actually, although I imagine it would require an investigative journalist visiting each ministry, interviewing people, asking for medical records, etc. It's possible, but I find it hard to imagine that someone on this stack would be willing to undertake such an endeavor for the sake of gaining a few reputation points.
    – user56618
    Commented Sep 22, 2020 at 2:55
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    @SpiritRealmInvestigator: If the phenomena is detectable/measurable, it isn't supernatural. When the photoelectric effect was discovered, it couldn't be explained by the current wave theory of light. That didn't make it supernatural.
    – Oddthinking Mod
    Commented Sep 22, 2020 at 4:09
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    A skeptics who sees fillings turning to gold in front of their eyes, must conclude (1) it is most likely a hoax/magic trick that they can't explain, (2) that they are delirious, or (3) they don't have an adequate understanding of the natural world to explain it. But they cannot conclude that "It is supernatural/God did it", because that is not a conclusion that can be drawn based on the evidence. And they certainly can't post such a conclusion here.
    – Oddthinking Mod
    Commented Sep 22, 2020 at 4:12
  • @Oddthinking strictly speaking, there are no conclusions that can be rigorously drawn from any evidence (in a formal mathematical sense). For instance, observing objects falling down to the ground does not logically entail gravity. Gravity is a hypothesis (tested, yeah, but hypothesis nonetheless). In general, the only thing we can do is to posit hypotheses and check whether their predictions match the evidence. In this regard, positing God as a hypothesis faces the problem of making predictions: it's not trivial at all how to make testable predictions about God's actions.
    – user56618
    Commented Sep 22, 2020 at 4:30
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    I think I am done. This is not productive.
    – Oddthinking Mod
    Commented Sep 22, 2020 at 4:39
  • @Oddthinking: my apologies for the inconveniences. Maybe this might be more intellectually satisfying.
    – user56618
    Commented Sep 22, 2020 at 20:44

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