Becky Garrison Article in Killing the Buddha

imageIn Killing the Buddha magazine, Becky Garrison*, a panelist for The Washington Post‘s On Faith column and a regular contributor to The Guardian, The Revealer, American Atheist magazine, and Religion Dispatches rambles about in Virgin Apparitions, Holy Blood, and Me . . .

from . . .

During a panel discussion for The Virgin, the Copts and Me, held as part of the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival, Namir Abdel Messeh, a French filmmaker of Egyptian origin, admitted he had embarked on a seemingly impossible quest. How can one make a movie that proves if an apparition exists or not?

to . . .

Within these communal responses we find the power of relics. In Religion Dispatches, Peter Manseau, KtB co-founder and author of Rag and Bone: A Journey Among the World’s Holy Dead, lays out the history of the Shroud of Turin, which clearly indicates that this item cannot be “real.” But he reminds us that “so much focus on explanation misses the point. Belief—any belief, whether in God, the Resurrection, even the Force—requires a partial abandonment of the rational.”

and if you follow up with the article in Religion Dispatches, well, you may not be as convinced as Garrison.

* Picture Corrected

6 thoughts on “Becky Garrison Article in Killing the Buddha”

  1. I think it’s time to redefine “rational.” Given all the actual evidence of the Shroud itself, is it “rational” to doubt its reality? Or does such doubt reflect an inability to deal rationally with facts that are not in one’s own cosmic view of existence?

    Reality is far more complex than a “rationalist” might admit. For example, there are many scientist s who admit that some aspects of Quantum Mechanics defy “rational” explanation. Simplistic rejection of any idea of existence a not being “rational” is shorthand for “Don’t bother me with the facts or any idea that confronts my assumptions with which I am comfortable.”

    If one looks back through the history of science one is struck at how many advances that ultimately became accepted truth were initially rejected because they were not “rational” according to the wisdom of the time and that includes Einstein (who himself initially rejected much of quantum mechanics because it was not rational.

    One might even conclude that nothing of importance can be accomplished by a “rational” man or woman.

    1. John I am in total agreement with your comment. It is the Naturalist world view that cannot accept there are things we cannot explain and are beyond our present state of scientific or naturalistic knowledge. Hense the push for a natural causation as opposed to a ‘supernatural’ one.

      The Fatima story comes to mind here, as WITNESSED by one of my family. A drenched field with thousands of rain soaked people, in minutes were completely dry; ground, cloths everything completely dry!. This miracle as witnessed by many thousands goes beyond ‘Naturalistic’ thinking yet gets very little mention at all.


  2. John’s comments are right on the money. One of my favourite books on this topic is John Cribben’s “In Search of Schrodinger’s Cat”, a layman’s elementary introduction to the mysteries of quantum mechanics. One only needs a high school knowledge of physics to be able to follow it. The peculiar thing is that before writing this posting, I have been searching all morning for this book to get the context right, but without success. This failure gives a whole new dimension to the search for this blessed cat who’s obviously gone missing.

    For those who don’t know about Schrodinger’s Cat, he is the topic of a thought experiment in quantum mechanics, a sort of game played by Einstein and other physicists in their efforts to plumb the mysteries of quantum mechanics, in their unsuccessful efforts to obtain a “rational” explanation, at what they imagined had to be “underlying variables”, but which like Schrodinger’s Cat had no real existence.

    Personally I feel that the modern lack of a full understanding of “rationality” is the result of the failure of twentieth century philosophy, because of its excursions into unreality, particularly by two French clowns, Foucault and Derrida.

  3. Well, let me offer this: the only problem with “rationality” is humanity. What we simply don’t understand we offer prevarications for. When we understand we offer our ignorance as excuse for our previous prevarications. Humility is the only solution.

    There is an old saying: “Science is like climbing a mountain. When the scientists reach the summit they will find the theologians having a picnic.”

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