Is it possible that some people who we think are mentally ill are actually victims of demonic possession? One psychiatrist says yes. Another psychiatrist says no – believing this is true is a matter of not carefully thinking about what you see and hear from others. In this episode I break down the claims made by Richard Gallagher and a counterpoint to Gallagher which was written by Steven Novella. Along the way we’ll learn about logical fallacies such as the “argument for incredulity” and the “argument of ignorance”. I think you’ll find this fascinating and I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.
- the Argument of Incredulity: “Well, I can’t explain it, so it must be unexplainable!”
- the Argument of Ignorance: “Well, I don’t know how to explain it therefore…it must be UFOs, or demons, or otherworldly forces…”
- Richard Gallagher: As a psychiatrist, I diagnose mental illness. Also, I help spot demonic possession.
- Skeptic Steven Novella: A Psychiatrist Falls for Exorcism
- Thank you to Marie Helweg-Larsen for making me aware of the Gallagher article.
- Thanks also to Bill Altman and Chris Green for their input on the infographic.
Take a look at my interactive infographic on demonic possession here:
Learn more about logical fallacies