As in the myth of Sisyphus, we have been trying to push the heavy boulder of rationality up the hill of slippery irrationality since 1995, currently with the help of over 600 members, two thirds of them being university graduates. Since 2000 we are members of the Czech Council of Scientific Societies. Our main activities include monthly lectures themed “Science vs. Irrationality” at the prestigious Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, weekly Friday seminars about skepticism in Social Sciences, the Erratic Boulder anti-award for persons who mystified the public the most in the previous year and, finally, the Paranormal Challenge.
The club is concerned with the defense and popularization of scientific knowledge.
Chief targets of our club are:
- The scientific analysis of paranormal phenomena
- Exposing the false proofs behind pseudoscientific ideas, unproved procedures and instruments, especially those promoted by mainstream media
- Offering assistance to citizens in protecting them from frauds of broadly advertised pseudoscientific procedures, expensive non-functional apparatuses, as well as warning patients of ineffective and, in some instances, even dangerous methods of pseudomedicine.
- The club coordinates its activity with European skeptics and with skeptical institutions all over the world. We regularly attend the European and international skeptic conferences and congresses. The club does not interfere with political problems, or with the religious faith.
Our aims are realized within a broad spectrum of activities. The skeptical ideas are promoted in the Sisyfos journal, published quarterly. Readers can acquaint themselves with contributions from our authors and a selection of translated papers published abroad. In addition to that, our members submit articles and columns into newspapers and academic journals. We have published academic literature as well as skeptical fiction.
Apart from the above-mentioned lectures in Prague, we hold lectures in other Czech cities, too – Pilsen, Brno, Kladno and other cities of the Czech Republic, where we hold our Czech annual Skeptikon.
In spite of many obstacles and difficulties we were successful partners of the Czech Chamber of Medicine in ridding itself of the Czech Homeopathic Society together with its section on Cluster Medicine. The same success was seen in closing the Section for Voll’s Electro-acupuncture of the Czech Medical Acupuncture Society. We participated in exposing and debunking several healers and imposters in critical programs of TV.
The Paranormal Challenge sets itself these two main goals.
- To objectively test claims of paranormal abilities. With the results of these experiments we aim to help science take another step into the unknown, or inform the public about erroneous claims. We monitor untestable phenomena as well and we gauge their credibility.
- We endeavor to make the Czech Republic the center of paranormal testing of Europe. Many European skeptical organizations do not have the facilities for testing of paranormal abilities and that is why we are offering doing the testing in our country.