Proving a Negative
Do all of the things we believe in, have any proof ?

How much of what we believe, can we prove, and can you prove a negative ?

For Example:

I got into a conversation with a man one day over Reiki  and the entire concept
of hands on energy healing

It was like getting into an argument with my rice crispies

Now in point of fact, I was speaking to someone else about it at the time 
and he was rude enough
 to be eavesdropping on the conversation, 
when he piped up,
 Unasked, and said 
" that energy healing stuff is for fools ya know "

( I am saying it politely here, which he did not )

Since I was not about to let his rudeness or his blanket statement
of hands on healing pass unchallenged, I asked him why he thought that ?

He said "because I don't believe it's possible"

Again I asked him " why?"

"Everybody knows they are all fakes" he said

Again I asked him " why?"

"Because only a fool would believe it" he stated

To make a long story short, he continued in this vein
no matter how often I asked " why ? "
or "have you read this study about it ?"
or  "have you seen this history about it ?" Ever try it ?
He had read none, seen none, nor wanted to even attempt it

In short, he had no reasons at all, other than the circular argument
of his own personal feelings of disbelief.

I told him, " Well that's certainly your right to disbelieve it, however
that gives you no right to say that all the rest of us who do believe
it works are deluded ... without proof "

Then I proceeded to tell him my proof

( Reiki is of course, only one of many recently named examples of hands on healing, 
 and therefore does not come with a long documented history per se,  
but it was the whole concept of hands on energy healing, that he was denigrating,
So, I took him for what he really said, in my answer to him. That said,
onward with my take down of this fool... )

 I told him that for untold eons, since the dawn of mankind there has been a belief in
 hands on healing work.
 In fact, there are records and documents
recounting how such hands on healing works, since the beginnings of recorded history,
in every language and in almost every religion, that the planet has ever known.

In every era and every country, even during the times
when they didn't even know that other peoples existed, there are records of such works 
so it is not a matter of them just copying each other, as they came to the idea
 completely independent of each other.

And, in the current day we have tools that can measure how such healing works,
Uncounted studies have been done by all manner of professionals
that definitively prove, that such healing works.
( Reiki being no exception to such testing, I hasten to add )

And, I have proved in my own personal life as a Reiki Master and healer, that it works.

All of these works and studies are available for free in any library
for anyone who cares to go and do the least bit of research.

That all of these reports far outweigh any few reports
by comparison, about any charlatans or fakes. 

And,  that If all energy healers were in fact   fakes and if "everybody"
knew this, then the whole idea would have died out long ago

Yet you, with no kind of proof whatsoever
Having admittedly done no research, no experimentation,
who have made no attempt to find out any information about it,
in any way, yet you feel justified in calling me
and all of those billions of people fools,
simply by saying you don't believe it and expect it to have meaning ?

That you and YOU alone know the truth about the matter
and all of those people past and present, myself included
are fools who are just kidding themselves.
Or trying to con somebody out of something,
just because YOU say so !

Who do you think you are ! !

You can tell I  was just a bit miffed here :) What can I say
Rude people just tick me off.. when it's topped off with rampant
ignorance to boot, it just makes it worse !

But I shouldn't have gotten angry, as he did no more than billions
before him have done, for as little reason. Using the so called " common"
 disbelief in a thing, as his reason for not believing in it.

Getting miffed at him didn't teach him anything, 
even through I have to admit it was emotionally

satisfying for a moment, but it was a waste of energy.

But the point is, for a great many things, healing being only one 
we are challenged for our beliefs, based on nothing at all

but another's disbelief, and most often, they can offer no proof whatsoever 
as to why they say we are wrong, other than, they do not believe in it.

Now it's said, that you can't prove a negative, well... that's only half right
You can prove why you feel a thing is so or not so, by your own studies
and "prove it " so that at least your stand has some validity.
But it must be REAL proof, belief alone don't get it.

This man, didn't have a leg to stand on, but it didn't stop him
from trying to "correct" my delusions.

We hear the same thing on many beliefs that a lot of us hold.

I have always felt that to "believe"
anything, positive or negative, there must
be proof. And further, that to act on a belief, it must have validity.

That when asked "why do you believe that"  no matter what "that" is, 
one should be
able to give a cogent answer, and that if you cannot
then you have no businesses even attempting to profess that you believe
or do not believe in something. At least not without being able to say WHY

I have spent a life time studying the why, both within myself
for my own thoughts and reasons, and outside myself, in study and research
on " things I believe" a process that I doubt I will ever stop.

This is an integral part of the
Pagan way, this self introspection. Not for us blind, unproved "facts"
Or round robin circular arguments of, it's so because I say so.

That argument for proof works until you are about 5 years old
after that you better be able to prove it to any rational thinking human being.
After all, why should they listen to just you ?

We see this even in the schools, it's how we learn,
I am sure you all remember having to use book references
and make footnotes on your papers in the classroom right ?

This "proving" a thing by referral to others that believe as you do
which you can verity, has always been accepted.. as "proof" right ?

Which is where the gentleman got his "everybody" knows statement,
He was using the so named "everybody" as a referral to "authority".
But he could offer no real proof of his statements validity, 
as even trying to use "everybody" as a reference, is kind of nebulous at best.

Even in the classroom his so called proof, would fall flat on its face. 

I don't know about you, but if I had even tried to use "everybody knows" as proof
 for anything, on any document I gave to my professors, 
I would have failed every exam or paper I ever handed in.
Not to mention, if I had used such a statement in a verbal argument in class,
I would have been laughed out of the classroom.

So no, you need  "real " proof for anything, particularly for what is important,
so we study and we seek and we learn. We become the scholar
who seeks out truth, no matter how hard the seeking as one
reference is not enough, numbers alone are not enough
feeling is not enough and yes, even general consensus is not enough.

See it held constantly, throughout time and place
and watch even more proof be piled on top of what's known
in each era and then maybe you have something you can " Prove"

So when we speak, we can KNOW that we speak from a stance
of believable reality, that others throughout history have shared
that we can also back up with major documentation if needed.

Anything less is just an argument with your breakfast food !