I wanted to ask people here what's the difference between parapsychology and anomalistic psychology.
Of course, I know the definitions of those (parapsychology is about trying to prove the existence of psi and/or to work based on the assumption that psi does exist + the same for the survivalist hypothesis) and anomalistic psychology is the the study of anomalous experiences with psychological tools.
But in practice, it seems to be mostly the same. If you take the recent textboox by Holt, Simmonds-Moore, Luke and French about anomalistic psychology, I read it pondering why it wasn't called an introduction to parapsychology.
Of course I get that anomalistic psychology adopts most of the time a reductionist approach. But in that textbook it wasn't the case. Some chapters were clearly written by psi-proponents (like David Luke - of paranthropology fame). So why not call it parapsychology?
Post by Jack Hunter on Sept 18, 2012 10:57:28 GMT -5
David Luke's chapter in the Paranthropology anthology goes into his view of the differences between anomalistic psychology and parapsychology.
For me, it would seem that the main difference is that while parapsychology is open to the psi hypothesis as providing potential explanations for anomalous experiences, anomalistic psychology is committed to cognitive and psychological explanations, and is averse to the psi hypothesis.
I don't think things are really as simple as this distinction, though, and there is a great deal of overlap both in terms of the nature of anomalous experiences and in approaches to studying them.
Post by dronfieldman on Oct 14, 2012 13:23:42 GMT -5
It also seems to me that there is probably a fair overlap between Parapsychology and Transpersonal Psychology, e.g. an NDE would be a (potentially) life transforming experience that would be studied within TP but, as a psychic phenomenon, would also be within the scope of Parapsychology.