Talk:B. Alan Wallace

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Unfortunately, this current page is a hagiography. No criticisms or critiqueable content is included, just accolades from various non-scientific sources.

Why don't you dig up some criticisms? I'll give you one: he's got a little bit of pressured speech going on. I first noticed it back in 1980. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:57, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

This page is terrible and reads like a Buddhist pamphlet. Here's some criticism. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:00, 16 March 2011 (UTC)

I agree, this page is awful. Anyone reading this would think the ideas mentioned all have scientific credibility. Many of them have no evidence and therefore not science. Louis.Marti (talk) 20:46, 25 February 2013 (UTC)

"His life's work focuses on a deep engagement between Buddhist philosophical and contemplative inquiry and modern science and philosophy, with a special emphasis on exploring the nature and potentials of the mind in a radically empirical manner, as free as possible from the dogmas of religion and materialism." His research is not empirical at all, let alone whatever "radically empirical" means. It is also contradictory to say he is trying to stay free from the dogmas of religion when he approaches everything from a religious (Buddhist) perspective. The idea that Buddhism is free from dogma is delusional. Louis.Marti (talk) 20:59, 25 February 2013 (UTC)

Recent removal of criticism[edit]

I restored the criticism removed by (talk · contribs), and I provided a link to reporting on the levels of acceptance. The user has now removed even more criticism while not responding to my point. Wikipedia reflects the scientific consensus. It is against policy to use Wikipedia as a platform to advance the Wallace's ideas (WP:PSCI WP:REDFLAG WP:FRINGE). vzaak (talk) 17:07, 18 November 2013 (UTC)

After reading the link on fringe theories it's evident that the self-proclaimed-skeptic's view qualifies as a "singular view", and not one representative of the scientific community as a whole. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:44, 4 December 2013 (UTC)

No. As noted above, see WP:FRINGE, specifically reporting on the levels of acceptance. vzaak 04:57, 9 December 2013 (UTC)

I removed the passage below because (a) the broad assertion about acceptance is unsubstantiated;; (b) the critique is by one writer who, as a clinical neurologist, is not particularly qualified to comment on philosophical or scientific issues; (c) the article does not even mention Wallace's views on consciousness, just his proposal on how some aspects of consciousness might be studied; (d) the critique of views was inappropriately appended to a factual section. If anyone wants to carry on this kerfuffle (I don't), they should start a section on Wallace's views on one or more topics, which he has strongly stated in countless places, and then add a section on critiques, with citations from appropriate, qualified commentators. --djlewis (talk) 16:23, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

Wallace's beliefs on consciousness have not gained acceptance within the scientific community. Steven Novella, a clinical neurologist, performed an analysis of Wallace's position and concluded there is no evidence for his claims,
|text= I find Wallace’s position similar to the famous “kettle defense” – he seems to be marshaling whatever arguments he thinks he can use to defend his beliefs, but he is not articulating a coherent position. The reason is clear enough – he is making the classic mistake of starting with a desired conclusion (merging Buddhist mysticism with modern science) and then working backwards. To achieve these ends he tries but fails to make scientific arguments for dualism and he simultaneously tries to fudge the rules of science to sneak in mysticism as evidence to support his side.
Also he utterly mangles quantum mechanics theory in an attempt to argue that – science says the world is weird, and my beliefs are weird, therefore science supports my views. The logic of this argument fails, but it doesn’t matter because the premise if wrong – quantum weirdness disappears at the macroscopic level.
In the end Wallace does no better than anyone who tries to subvert science to support any ideology.
|sign=Steven Novella

(a) No, this is explained in the link directly above your comment, reporting on the levels of acceptance; (b) Novella is qualified; (c) that's a good point; the criticism should be pared down to match; (d) no, per WP:PSCI criticism should be prominent.

The large quote does seem disproportionate in relation to the brief explanation. I've replaced the criticism with a single sentence, with WP:ITA in mind. vzaak 17:20, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

I edited the criticism to make it more neutral. Suggesting that Wallace's ideas and theories regarding consciousness are 'beliefs' implies that they are neither testable and are largely dismissible. This criticism also does not seem proportional with Wallace's published work. In other words, Wallace has done a large amount of collaborative work on the basic neuroscience and psychology of meditation. The critique, even as I've edited it, should almost be a critique of Tibetan Buddhism, as the cited reference from Novella doesn't talk about any of Wallace's original ideas and focuses more on the basic understanding of consciousness within a particular branch of Buddhism. Furthermore, I seriously question Novella's authority to make this critique, as he obviously is making strong assumptions regarding the nature of consciousness himself, that most scientists don't accept. That is, the nature of consciousness is a hot debate these days, and alternative theories are often proposed both by physicists and top-notch neuroscientists. Yet, Novella simply adopts the view that is consistent with his belief in scientific materialism. This view and belief in scientific materialism does not generate any new testable hypotheses, and is essentially a dead end . . . which is why it is a belief and not a theory. (talk) 16:53, 21 August 2014 (UTC) JE


  1. ^ "B. Alan Wallace and Buddhist Dualism". Retrieved February 25, 2013. 


A large section of the biography was previously deleted, citing copyright violation. However, after it was obvious that the work was originally written on wiki and then copied to the website listed. This was undone. (talk) 14:12, 9 September 2014 (UTC) JE

Mass changes by Debatecontributor[edit]


  • You fixed the WP:COPYVIO by rephrasing sentence by sentence, all sourced to Wallace's own biography. This isn't how biographies on Wikipedia are written, and doubly so with regard to the bullet-list style. Wikipedia isn't a hosting service for Wallace's CV; please see WP:BLP.
  • The lead is now a big wall of text, with wikilinks and paragraph breaks removed.
  • As explained in one of my edit comments, Wikipedia doesn't use honorifics like "H. H."; it's not encyclopedic.
  • External links should not be in the body of the article (WP:EL). Some of these existed even before you came, but they shouldn't be there.
  • Wikipedia isn't a platform for promoting Wallace; please see WP:NPOV.

Please take some time to read over Wikipedia's policies and guidelines; the links in the welcome message on your talk page are a good place to start. Manul ~ talk 21:26, 7 January 2015 (UTC)

          • Manul, the text I wrote is not promoting but informing, everything written is true. A biography informs of dates and events. Before, there was only one line of information, I'm adding more content with the purpose to provide information. Removing the honorifics is ok, no problem. Neutral point of view is what I'm giving to the article, what I removed was an absurd criticism based on cero evidence as other contributors have pointed out before. I'm not praising nor criticizing, I'm just informing, if you take the time to read the text carefully you will notice this. If you find any wikilink is missing let me know and I will repair it and I will remove the external links. Regarding the text you keep adding "Wallace's beliefs on consciousness have not gained acceptance within the scientific community and have been criticized for employing dualism and quantum mysticism." It is totally biased since many researchers such as Nobel Laureate Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn, Dr. Cliff Saron, Dr. Richard Davidson and Dr. Paul Ekman, all of them recognized scientists, have collaborated with Dr. Wallace and they think his hypothesis are worth putting to the test. In order to reach a consensus, Can you please edit that sentence and rephrase it as "Novella thinks: "Wallace's beliefs...". Also, you keep erasing this paragraph "In 2007, Dr. Wallace and Dr. Cliff Saron, (researcher from the Center for Mind and Brain at UCDavis) conducted a large-scale study of the effects of meditation training, known as "The Shamatha Project." Collaborating scientists were top scientists such as Nobel Laureate Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn amongst others." Can you please explain why are you removing it? this is verifiable information and I provided a reference. RegardsDebatecontributor (talk) 21:45, 7 January 2015 (UTC)

Debatecontributor, sorry that has to stay in order to satisfy WP:NPOV, in particular WP:PSCI, WP:WEIGHT, WP:GEVAL. When it comes to scientific claims, Wikipedia is not actually neutral (WP:NOTNEUTRAL, WP:FRINGE). Encountering a slew of policies is a dreaded experience for newcomers; WP:NPOV is somewhat unintuitive at first, but it makes sense in the end.

I didn't remove the Shamatha Project part; as I said in the edit comment, I moved it to another section. Manul ~ talk 22:23, 7 January 2015 (UTC)