Today, with permission, The Imaginative Conservative blog republished a 1982 essay by Russell Kirk entitled Virtue: Can It Be Taught?
The concept of virtue, like most other concepts that have endured and remain worthy of praise, has come down to us from the Greeks and the Hebrews. In its classical signification, “virtue” means the power of anything to accomplish its specific function; a property capable of producing certain effects; strength, force, potency. Thus one refers to the “deadly virtue” of the hemlock. Thus also the word “virtue” implies a mysterious energetic power, as in the Gospel According to Saint Mark: “Jesus, immediately knowing that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes?” Was it, we may ask, that virtue of Jesus which scorched the Shroud of Turin?
and there was this tidbit of a definition of virtue:
For virtue, we should remember, is energy of soul employed for the general good.
[I]t is altogether possible that a general widespread renewal of faith in the supernatural and transcendent character of Christian belief may come to pass within the next few years a phenomenon more tremendous than the Great Awakening ushered in by Wesley and others two centuries ago. But to pursue that possibility here would lead me to the mysteries of the Shroud of Turin . . . .
I think that Kirk, who converted from Atheism to Christianity (Roman Catholicism specifically), believed this at a level that was less mysterious and more scientific. He understood the philosophy of science better than most and he seemed to find accommodation for miracles within it and not beyond its limits.
The Shroud of Turin is among the most analyzed artifacts in the world. Is it a fabulous fraud? Or is it the burial cloth of Jesus of Nazareth? Is it forensic evidence that documents what happened to Jesus’ crucified body?
Shroud expert Russ Breault (pictured), seen on the History Channel and the Discovery Channel among others, will give a presentation on the shroud on Thursday, March 1. He will explore the mystery, facts and analysis surrounding the Shroud of Turin. The event will be held at noon in Woulfe Alumni Hall in the Anderson Student Center. Lunch will be provided.
Breault’s talk is sponsored by St. John Vianney Seminary and Campus Ministry.
MUST READ: Philip Ball, consultant editor for Nature, back in January of 2005, To know a veil : Nature News
Will scientists ever accept that trying to establish the true status of the Turin shroud is a vain quest? The object itself is too inaccessible, and its history is too poorly documented and understood, to permit irrefutable conclusions.
Perhaps this is timely for some of the discussions going on in the comments.
There were questions about why we should be good to each other if the laws of nature don’t differentiate between good and evil; about how I could excuse all the evil done in the world by atheists; and all the other standard evangelist tropes. One questioner demanded to know how I could account for the existence of the Shroud of Turin, asserting that 95% of the scientists who studied it had converted. I explained that the cloth was carbon-dated to the 14th century, the same time when the shroud was first mentioned in historical records, and that a medieval bishop wrote a letter to the pope saying that the shroud was a forgery and that the forger had confessed.
Douglas Todd in this morning’s Vancouver Sun writes that the Shroud of Turin a source of spiritual strength for academic:
That’s when the 66-year-old old Anglican academic had an epiphany upon first viewing the shroud in Turin Cathedral in northern Italy. Many Christians consider the shroud the bona fide burial cloth of a crucified Jesus.
Even though Wiebe teaches at an evangelical university where faculty are expected to adhere to traditional Christian doctrine, the member of the Church of the Ascension in Langley City admits being blown away by his first-hand experience of the Turin shroud.
In that ecstatic moment, Wiebe was finally convinced that the resurrection of Jesus Christ was an actual physical event. "I was shocked at the confidence I felt. It made me realize I had doubts about the resurrection."
Since then, Wiebe, a philosophy professor who has written scholarly books on reported religious miracles and visions, such as God and Other Spirits, has been giving scores of presentations about the four-metre-long shroud.
A blogger who calls himself phyzics who writes A Rather Silly Blog has posted Shroud of Turin Lecture.
So roughly a week ago I compiled all the posts I’ve done on here together into a lecture format for a hopeful upcoming presentation I’ll be giving on the Shroud of Turin and its acting as evidence for the Resurrection. This contains not only all the material I’ve done with revisions and some additions, but two new sections on the work of Walter McCrone vs Adler and Heller, but a brief reconstruction of the Shroud’s journey throughout history. While it is still only in a draft form, it takes about an hour and a half for me to read out loud, which may be a little long. I’m really looking for feedback so that this can be as best as it can be. Thank you, and please look at it via the link!
That link leads to 25 pages of well written, well researched material: the reason I got up early this morning. Read it. Please do. It’s good. This caught my attention, in particular.
At this point in the argument I am going to assume that the Shroud of Turin is indeed the burial shroud of Jesus Christ. The sections up to this point have largely been a justification for this assumption. The real excitement about the Shroud is when we start to examine it in the light of the first Easter.
There already exists voluminous studies on the Resurrection and what the apostles saw, largely in the camps of criticism and apologetics. My contention all along is that the Shroud adds unprecedented weight to the claims of the apologists, not only confirming the written record of the Gospels but giving us a primary document which supplies us with tar more information than we had previously.
Why then, a Resurrection? Couldn’t we just say that the image of Christ was made via a naturalistic process and that as eerily and unique it may be (eerily perhaps because of it’s uniqueness) it docs not prove the Resurrection? Yes and no.
Read on at The Argument From the Shroud [Lecture]
The picture is from scribd and I am assuming the uploader is the writer. I’ll hear.