Crazy Talk: Are Atheists biased or just uninformed?

imageThis posting with many comments was just recycled on an Italian Tourism website. (I don’t like the practice of plagiarizing and not giving any links or credits so I’m not linking to the tourism site but to the original posting, Are Atheists biased or just uninformed? that appeared in Yahoo Answers. Here is how it starts:

I find it interesting how a number of atheists will demand the application of "science" and "intellectual thought"…and then, when it comes to a topic they want to brush aside, they simply ignore the evidence and make inane comments that make them sound like the very people they ridicule.

WRONG! Read the article and read the comments. Most of the people from BOTH SIDES are largely uninformed and biased.

YES. The Shroud of Turin has been debunked many times. So many of the commenters are right. BUT, none of the “debunking,” with time, has stood up to scientific scrutiny. That is not uncommon in the world of science. In the case of the shroud this includes the carbon dating, the claim of finding inorganic paint particles and the most ridiculous recent claims that it has been reproduced. Consult and limit yourself to ethical peer-reviewed scientific journals. Always search the archives for newer data. Be scientific in your approach.

NO. That doesn’t mean that the Shroud of Turin is the burial cloth of Jesus. It may be. I don’t think it is possible to prove this, however. I think, if one does not limit oneself to science alone and embraces the study of history, it is possible to infer that it is real. INFERENCE is not PROOF.

NO. No one has reproduced the image of the shroud. Every year the Associated Press (AP) announces a new method by someone who claims to have reproduced the shroud image. ASK YOURSELF why there is a new method each year. Is the latest the last? Instead of getting your scientific facts from the AP, read peer-reviewed journals like Nature and JIST, Journal of Imaging Technology.

DON’T SAY ATHEIST WHEN YOU MEAN SKEPTIC. I know many well informed, believing Christians who don’t think the shroud is real. On the other hand, I know an Atheist (there is more than one and there are some non-Christians as well) who believes it is really the burial cloth of Jesus of Nazareth but that nothing religious can be proven by that belief. The distinction is important.

Good Capsule History of the Shroud of Turin

Ray Schneider tips us off to this video in his blog, Bible Surfing.

Barrie Schwortz Writes

imageFrom an email sent to his mailing list (see how to join the list, below):

Due to my very busy travel and lecturing schedule over the past few months (I visited Los Angeles and Santa Clara, California in February and March and Spain, Italy and Poland in April), along with hosting a number of noted Shroud researchers here at my home recently, nearly six months have passed since our last website update. The good news (and the reason for this e-mail), is to let you know that the next update is in progress and should be online in about two weeks. As one of our loyal subscribers, trust that your patience is truly appreciated.

The next update will include a complete report on my recent travels and lectures in Europe, the addition of several new papers to the Scientific Papers & Articles and the Religion and Philosophy pages, the June 2011 edition of the BSTS Newsletter, updates to both the Shroud Speakers Directory and the Links To More Information pages, the addition of a number of new titles to the Shroud Booklist page and much, much more. 

imageAs you know, I always try to provide our subscribers with advanced notice of any important news, changes or additions coming to the site and this update is no exception. As you can see from the graphic at left, website visitors will soon be able to join our mailing list directly from their smart phones (without using a computer). This will be unveiled in the next update, but the system is already functional so I am providing the information to you in advance so you can encourage your friends and colleagues to join us. Simply text SHROUD to 22828 to get started (only an e-mail address is required).

I also want to thank you again for your continued patronage and support. Don’t forget to check the Private Subscribers Page for other exclusive offers not available to the general public. And for those of you here in the USA, have a great 4th of July holiday!

You received this e-mail because you signed up as a subscriber to the Shroud of Turin Website STERA, Inc. Mailing List.  As always, unsubscribing from this list is simple.  Just click on the SafeUnsubscribe link at the bottom of each e-mail and your name will be permanently removed immediately.  If you need to update your personal information or your e-mail address, just click on the Update Profile/Email Address link at the bottom of each e-mail and follow the instructions provided.

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, you can contact me directly by e-mail at the address listed at the end of this letter.  Please be patient as I receive large volumes of mail.  Although I do my best to answer most of the letters I receive, a response is not always possible.  Your patience and understanding are appreciated.

Warmest regards,

Barrie Schwortz

Editor & Founder, Shroud of Turin Website
President, STERA, Inc.

Quick Links…

Has Anyone Read ‘The Magic Fault?’

An email from Joe Marino and an article in the Twin Cities Star Tribune reminded me that on March 22, this year, I wrote about the new Shroud-based novel by Paul Mohrbacher, The Magic Fault. There has been total silence. I haven’t heard from a single person who has read it. From the Star Tribune:

imageThe book, "The Magic Fault," touches on serious issues, including people’s growing mistrust of religions other than their own. Mohrbacher, who spent 16 years as a Roman Catholic priest before resigning in 1976 to get married, is concerned about what he sees as a growing distrust between Christianity and Islam, a situation often exacerbated by politicians.

"In the book, I use the term ‘the other’ to refer to people we are afraid of because we don’t know anything about them, people who are not a member of our group," he said. "Whenever we get into an election cycle, politicians are going to use that fear to get power."

He didn’t want to write a nonfiction book, because he figured it would be pigeonholed as a tome for theological insiders. He wanted to reach a broader audience.

To do that, "people have to see this as entertaining," he said. "It can pick up the themes, but it has to be fiction."

The plot involves Christian extremists who steal the Shroud of Turin in the belief that if they take it to Jerusalem, it will force the second coming of Jesus Christ and stop Islamists from taking over the world.

The story is set in 2004. That was when Mohrbacher was in Italy and saw the Shroud of Turin.

"I’m big on numbers," he explained. "The shroud was stolen from Constantinople [during the Crusades] in 1204, and I liked the idea of it being stolen again 800 years later."

It is available in Kindle edition for $4.99, so maybe I’ll download a copy and read it. The paperback edition available at Amazon, Barnes and Nobel and several other outlets sells for about $14.00.

Has anyone read it. There isn’t even a review at Amazon.