Tuesday, August 17, 2010

"The Law of Emotional Balance?"

I thought I would pass on to readers an example of the sort of stuff that I, retired professor and minor blog writer that I am - get sent several times a weeks to "please support or link to," presumably because internet scanning algorithms point to the MindBlog site. I got hooked into spending more time on this one than I should have because the cover email was from Stephen Takowsky, publisher of The Beverly Hills Times, who had:
...come across a book about which we are considering running an article.... Your assistance would be greatly appreciated. Our main goal at this point is to determine whether there is any established scientific evidence that tends either to support or invalidate the theory presented in the book. We want to find out if there is any scientific research that is relevant to the premise of the book.
So....   I take the bait and click on http://www.ofgrandeur.com/ , find a slightly horrific graphic and an introduction on "The Law of Emotional Balance" that raises multiple red flags.   I can't get the better of my curiosity, so I click on, find "comments from active scientist in associated field" which appear to vague clips mentioning general ideas, but which do not reference this book's specific contents.  The brief introduction/preface pretty well finally cashes it in for me, and then I find the text, whose author is one Stephen Takowsky, owner and publisher of The Beverly Hills Times ("who had come across a book..", see above....must be his evil twin). He  has solicited the opinion of hundreds or academics and reports thus far that the professors' votes are 381 nay, and 253 yea...

Still, having taken as much of my time (and yours).... I click through the book and realize that any attempt to make detailed comments would be a promethean and futile task.


  1. Anonymous6:43 PM

    This published peer reviewed article taken from Nonlinear Dynamics, Psychology, and Life Sciences, Vol. 9, No. 1, supports the Law of Emotional Balance.


  2. Hey minor blog writer, keep up the good work ;-) Your blog is always interesting and inspiring. I have to read your 'Biology of the Mind' book some day.

  3. I stumbled over this entry (I will CERTAINLY be reading more) and thought you might be interested in my own blog post on this "book": http://icbseverywhere.com/blog/2010/03/how-to-live-forever-or-i-get-email/

    The version online today barely resembles the one I saw a year ago (I have screen shots if you're interested), which was incoherent in some places and downright offensive in others, but the ridiculousness of it remains.

    He tried to promote the thing in December of 2009 by posting in dozens of forums, pretending to be a reader and not its author.

    I received several emails and some new comments late last summer (about the time you wrote this). He'd apparently sent out another, larger batch of emails in addition to hitting forums again.

    I'm quite sure, too, that the first commenter here is Takowsky, even though it's been explained to him that the article does not support his "theory".

    I can't explain my fascination with this, except to say that there is a reason I chose to study cognitive psychology...