When I first saw Martin Kottmeyer's article on noted author Robert J. Lifton, I was delighted to see that other critical thinkers share in my long-time appreciation of his analyses and ideas on symbolic immortality, the protean self and psychohistorical processes. On an even more personal note, I have been friends over the years with Chuck Strozier, former Sangamon State University professor and author of books on Lincoln and about fundamentalism, who moved to New York to work with Lifton, including serving as executive director of the Center on Violence and Human Survival. Their works on human behavior in face of death and destruction are very moving and influential on my own thinking.
In his cover article, Kottmeyer demonstrates that pro-paranormal supporters may be misstating Lifton's position on certain matters that may or may not be subtle ways of bolstering arguments to support a particular viewpoint. His article, at the very least, is a reminder that realizing the truth is no easy task -- that one has to be ever vigilant about generalizations, misstatements and other errors of thought.
/s/ Bob Ladendorf