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Penn & Teller’s Hateful Bullshit

July 27, 2014 13 comments

The mocking of Fred Zugibe is particularly nasty.

imageSometimes I don’t get the way Facebook works – or is it that I never do. Just this morning I took a quick look at the page for The Holy Shroud Guild. The topmost recent post was dated May 5th. That was followed by one from just a few hours ago (I’ll get to that in a subsequent post), then one from later in May and then things seemed to settle down with normal posting sequences going from recent July down the page to the oldest entries.

It’s a good thing it happened because I had missed the May 5th posting by Danusha Goska. It was important. It was a link to something she wrote, Christophobia on Campus, Penn Jillette and Joseph Goebbels, and Shroud of Turin Talk Update, in her Save, Send Delete blog. She wrote (and you should read the whole posting):

Jillette and Teller’s performance was hateful. It was comparable to the kind of material that Joseph Goebbels used to produce. Goebbels also took distinctively religious icons – in his case Jewish ones – and associated them with derision in order to facilitate violence and hate.

I’ve often heard New Atheists complain that they have a bad reputation. They wonder why.

It was a good thing, too,  to read what Danusha wrote because four days ago a reader had written to me about the video. It was making the rounds on New Atheist blogs and such. He sent a link to a mid-July entry in The Thinking Atheist. Had I seen it? No! It was two and a half years old. So what, the reader said, it is out there and getting attention; you should show it. No, I won’t, I thought. Why advertise it?

Having read, Danusha’s posting, yes, I will. The readers of this blog are intelligent. I’m not promoting it since it is written by bigots for idiots and there are no idiots here. Maybe the comparison to Goebbels is a bit strong. Even so, Danusha makes an important point. The mocking of Fred Zugibe is particularly nasty.

John Klotz Issues a Challenge: Show Me an Image

July 26, 2014 58 comments

A reposting from Quantum Christ Image by John Klotz
(with permission)


A Challenge to the Skeptical Community: Show Me an Image

imageI have a challenge to those skeptical of the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin, Show me an image comparable to the Shroud of Turin at least five centuries old. It doesn’t have to be of Christ or have any relationship to religion. It can be of anything.

I am in the process of completing a manuscript with a current working title of: “The Coming of the Quantum Christ: The Shroud of Turin and the Apocalypse of Selfishness.”

It includes in the large part, the scientific study of the Shroud of Turin. Some weeks ago I challenged a skeptic on Dan Porter’s   Shroud Story blog to show me an image of sufficient relative antiquity that has similar characteristics as the image on the Shroud of Turin. I do not recall ever receiving a response. So now I the challenge to the larger skeptical community:

Show me such an image of that was in existence no later than 1500 CE [AD]. I choose that year as the cut-off because I believe no one can seriously dispute the existence of the Shroud by that year.

Not a painting. Painted images do not qualify because I submit that from one thing established by the Shroud of Turin Research Project (STURP) in 1978 and by additional research since that time, is that the Shroud is NOT a painting. Sorry Walter McCrone fans. In one of my chapters I cite Harry Gove’s initial impressions of McCrone when he first met him. They are not complimentary.

So here’s the challenge: direct me to an image currently in existence that was created prior to 1500 CE that has features comparable to the Shroud. That would include at a minimum:

  1. A depth of the image no greater than the outer shell of a fibril of linen. The image of the shroud is such, or even more probably, a darkening of by-products left on  the linen from the  retting of it by methods dating back to BEFORE 1000 CE but I won’t quibble about a measly 500 years;
  2. Sufficient definition (resolution) of the image to allow determination of important features of a human body to the extent those are determinable from the Shroud image;
  3. Difference of various parts of the image intensity to allow interpretation as a three dimensional object.

I am serious about this. My final chapter is 18; The Challenge of the Shroud and if anybody has a relevant image, I will comment there or maybe in a relevant earlier  chapter with proper attribution.

You may respond to this posting to QuantumChristImage.blogspot.com. Warning, I am looking for a specific item: an image that has the characteristics of the Shroud image that predates 1500 CE. It does not have to be of Christ. If you  wish to direct me to such image please respond. However, I  will delete argumentation about my criteria which fails to cite an image which matches the criteria.

Book Review of Hoax

July 22, 2014 1 comment

imageJoe Marino sent along an interesting review on Strategy Page by Albert A. Nofi of the book, Hoax: Hitler’s Diaries, Lincoln’s Assassins, and Other Famous Frauds by Edward J. Steers with a forward by Joe Nickell.

We previously discussed this book in May last year, Summer Reading: Tell Me What You Want to Believe and I Will Tell What You Will Believe, and so it was good to see this review. Here is what Nofi wrote:

This methodology applies equally to the several Pearl Harbor conspiracy theories Steers address.  For the Hitler diaries hoax, Steers not only points out flaws in the methodology used to authenticate the bogus documents, but also manages to trace the fate of Hitler’s actual papers.  A similar approache is used for the “Anthon Transcript” hoax.  While Steers marshals considerable scientific evidence that the Shroud of Turin is not what it purports to be (a conclusion reached by some churchmen nearly seven centuries ago), it still remains a curious mystery.  Of the cases, only Piltdown Man is without some degree of lingering controversy, having the least political or popular importance.

Joe also noticed an Amazon review by Michael P. Maslanka on Amazon:

That’s the formula for pulling off a hoax as we see time and again in this short and insightful book. We see these elements come together in the Hitler diary hoax. Time and again, when belief was about to be suspended, these elements re-ignited it. Best chapter in on the Shroud of Turin. The author is respectful of thos who believe it is the burial shroud of Christ, but is still devasting in his arguments that it is not:(a) why did the shroud pop up all of a sudden in the 1300’s?;(2) surely it should have been mentioned in the Bible but is not;(3) the type of weave pattern did not exist at the time of Christ’s death(the burial shrouds of the very rich had a simple weave pattern, not the more complex one on the shroud);(4)the Bible says that Christ was buried according to Jewish tradition which requires a washing away of all blood and the placement of a small cloth over the face of the deceased but the shroud shows Christ’s face and the blood. A well made(nice feel to holding it) and a well written book. Want insights into human nature? Give it a read.

Did Nickell write that piece about the shroud? Tired, old arguments. It will never cease.

Another Segment of Stephen Jones’ Conspiracy Theory

July 22, 2014 2 comments

imageIt is part 8. If you are interested CLICK HERE.

Stephen, in bold, banners text that reads:

EVIDENCE THAT KARL KOCH INSTALLED LINICK’S PROGRAM ON ZURICH AND OXFORD LABORATORIES’ AMS COMPUTERS

He then presents no evidence that I can see; none whatsoever. By-the-way, what Linick program? So far, Stephen has only hinted at this.

Well anyway, you can learn something about Karl Koch. And you can wonder why Stephen makes a splashing point that Koch is not essential to his theory.  He’s got that right.

Russ Breault, Barrie Schwortz, John and Rebecca Jackson at Prophecy Conference

July 19, 2014 1 comment

imageRuss Breault writes on his Shroud Encounter Facebook page:

Anyone near Colorado Springs? I will be speaking 4 times at the upcoming Pikes Peak Prophecy Conference:

  • Friday 7/25 at 3:30–"Unholy Obsession–When Hitler Tried to Steal the Shroud"
  • Saturday 7/26 at 8:30 AM–"Seven Secrets of the Sacred Shroud"
  • Saturday at 3:30 PM–"A Q&A with Russ Breault, Barrie Schwortz, and John and Rebecca Jackson"
  • Saturday at 5:00 PM–"God is in the Details" Main auditorium and will be streamed live.
  • Conference will be held at the Colorado Springs Marriott–Tech Center Dr.

Devastating News for the Mona Lisa? Is She or He a Photograph?

July 18, 2014 3 comments

clip_image001The blog is called La pagina di Littleflower (The page of Littleflower). Thanks to Google Translation, we can read What links the Shroud of Turin to Leonardo’s Mona Lisa. It was posted yesterday:

The Shroud and the Mona Lisa contain many common points such as to generate suspicion that they are actually two separate parts of a single work.

The Shroud and the Mona Lisa not only contain graphic parts that seem designed specifically to be overlapped with each other, but they also contain references to correctly display and overlay.

And this,

Personally I do not believe that the creation of the Shroud is the result of a specific commission proposed by the Savoy but I think the Shroud of Leonardo was ready because it was the result of previous experiments tending to prove the falsity and the easy reproducibility of such a relic.

In the realization of his Shroud Leonardo, however, takes a number of precautions so that the truth will emerge in the future, in order to prepare or modify the Mona Lisa so that superimposing the two images it is quite unobjectionable that the achievement is yours.

And it was photographic. Yes, apparently so if you believe Littleflower. Forget the shroud, the implications for the Mona Lisa are devastating.

What has Joe Nickell Been Up To Lately?

July 17, 2014 3 comments

clip_image001

Lately? This page at CSI offers a quick review over the past year or so. I see nothing related to the Shroud. My favorite is his investigation of the Florida Skunk Ape. Here is a picture of him taking a picture of nothing in order to prove that skunk apes do not exist. I think I see an alligator just behind him about to eat him. Or is that just a pareidolia formed by swamp grass?

He writes in CSI’s Skeptical Inquirer:

Behavior. The Skunk Ape’s behavior is typically similar to that of Bigfoot everywhere. It is frequently seen standing among trees, crossing a road (and occasionally being hit by a car), rummaging in garbage, drinking water or catching fish from a lake or stream, visiting campsites, standing to peer into windows, and so on. It typically vocalizes by growling, grunting, grumbling, or producing “stressed breathing” and, at least once, “clicking sounds,” among others (although at times there is no sighting and so no certainty that the sound was that of a Skunk Ape) (Jenkins 2010, 111, 117, 123).

Picture Credit: See article.

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