عنوان مقاله [English]
The quiddity of paranormal phenomena has been interesting and questionable throughout human history and mankind has alwayes tried to underestand it in format of various names and titles.
when it is talked about these phenomena , some poeple try to prove them and others try to deny them; Without having a common and precise definition of these phenomena in advance. in other words; Before giving a reason for existence or non-existence of "X" , we must have a precise definition of it. that has all the conditions of a correct and logical definition, Otherwise any discussion about " X" will be useless and other than adding ambiguity, it does not help to clarify the matter.
for this reason, in this article we have tried to examine the most popular definitions of paranormal phenomenom that has been presented so far and after analyzing the advantages and disadvantages of each definition over each other to provide the basis for reaching a fairly accurate definition of these phenomena.
our position in this article is that it is possible to reach a accurate definition of paranormal phenomenon.
we try to pave the way for a better definition , which in our opinion is the ninth definition; by showing the defects and strengths of each definition.
we must note that our claim in this article is not to provide a very precise definition but it is to show this matter that contrary to popular belief; provided definitions of paranormal phenomenon are not perfect.
however, it is possible to take steps and try to achieve the almost accurate definition that does not have the drawbacks of previous definitions.
although there is a long way to go to reach an absolutely accurate definition and walking this way requires many steps; This article can be one of the first steps.
Methods and Matterial:
our research method in this article is a rational method that includes deductive method. however, we also used experimental data to show the accuracy of our results.
Results and Discussion:
Before defining the paranormal phenomenon, a distinction must be made between three categories: normal, unnormal and paranormal phenomena.
Phenomena that we call paranormal are divided into two categories: the first category is phenomena that are "aparrantly" paranormal that with the advancement of science, we may no longer consider them paranormal, The second category is phenomena that are truly paranormal.
Although ordinary people do not have a clear criterion for distinguishing between normal and unnormal phenomena ;None of them doubts the existence of unnormal phenomena, but still they doubt the existence of paranormal phenomen and are skeptical about putting them in the category of unnormal phenomena.
however, there are phenomena that are candidates for the paranormal category our definition should be such that it includes aparrantly paranormal phenomena.
Since Ducasse's definition of paranormal phenomena is based on natural causation, his definition is not accurate, beacause causality in paranormal phenomena may be another type of causality. Definitions based on scientific inexplicability are also not appropriate because first, many natural phenomena, such as gravity, do not yet have a scientific explanation and yet no one calls them paranormal.
Secondly, if we consider it absolutely scientifically inexplicable, we have denied the possibility of their occurrence. Broad's definition, which is based on basic limiting principles, is not correct either. because the exact number of these principles is not known and there is doubt in their basicity.
Scriven's definition, while introducing the component of consciousness, is still ambiguous. The ninth definition, which is the one we have provided, has at least one major advantage over the other definitions; and that by knowing these phenomena beyond time and space considers phenomena such as precognition and clairvoyance to be rationally explainable without considering them empirically explicable.
The first step in explaining paranormal phenomena is to try to reach an accurate definition of them.
In parapsychology, different conceptual definitions of these phenomena have been presented. which are mainly based on scientific inexplicability
The definition based on scientific inexplicability, if it is limited to a specific time, then includes normal and unnormal phenomena as well and it will no longer be an exact definition, even if it is not limited to a specific time and we consider the supernatural phenomenon to be absolutely inexplicable, then we have denied the possibility of its occurrence.
In Islamic philosophy and mysticism, there are valuable discussions about the paranormal phenomenon but they have two problems, the first of which is their dependence on religious and theological issues and the lack of an independent and phenomenological research on them. another problem is that most of their definitions of a paranormal phenomenon are based on mentioning referents of concept of this phenomenon and fail to provide a precise conceptual definition.
Since in the first eight definitions, the criterion of scientific inexplicability constitutes at least one of the key elements of the definition of the paranormal phenomenon. until we have a precise and clear definition of science and its scope, none of them can be considered a proper definition of the paranormal phenomenon. however, it seems that the ninth definition, that is, the definition we have given, does not have this defect because it is not based on scientific inexplicability and it has advantages that even Scriven's definition lacks. simplicity, comprehensiveness and compatibility with customary understanding are important advantages of this definition over previous definitions. therefore, until we reach a completely accurate definition of these phenomena, the ninth definition is better and more accurate than other definitions.