Home > Crowdfunding, History, Science > I say let all of us help David help us all

I say let all of us help David help us all

September 10, 2013

The following is a guest posting by David Rolfe,
a regular participant on this blog.

imageThe page on which Dan posted news of the endorsement for my Crowd Funding campaign from Dr. Rowan Williams has sparked a debate that has now just under a hundred contributions. The ignition for this was Dr. William’s reference to being impressed with Ian Wilson’s Edessa Image theory. This has run in parallel with a guest posting from Yannick that uses a recently rediscovered paper by Ray Rogers to spark 42 comments on the question of the nature and cause of the image.  With respect to all the contributors, (among which I have to include myself), I suggest that any objective and disinterested observer of these pages would conclude that the whole exercise risks going round in ever decreasing circles and, if one was being harsh, risks becoming a fatuous exercise. This is not because, for the most part, the minds being exercised are particularly deficient. It is because the available information about which so much is argued is so stale and limited. We all know that is because the Shroud – for all serious purposes of study – has been removed from the world.  It might just as well have been consumed in the fire of 1997 as far as its study and scholarship is concerned.

imageYes, we have some more widely available images available in an app but I have seen no great revelations come from these yet.  At this rate, we all, along with the likes of Dr. Zugibe [pictured to the right with Al Alder in a tee shirt], Kim Deisbach [pictured below] and many other great Shroud scholars gone before, will have to wait to get to the other side to find out anything more of substance.  As anyone who has read my posts here and elsewhere over the last few years will know my preoccupation has been with trying to create some momentum to encourage the powers that be to reopen the Shroud to science. So far,to no avail.  Meanwhile, the Shroud lies useless not just to its own scholarship, but to that part of the world’s population that might have most to learn from it if it does, indeed, have something more meaningful to tell us.

imageAmong the reasons cited by Bruno Barberis for the Vatican being reluctant to proceed further with another scientific examination is, believe it or not, the question of money. Hard to imagine, I know, that an organisation as wealthy as the Vatican and its dedicated Knights and other prestigious orders, cannot find the necessary cash to undertake this task. But such things are expensive and whatever must be done must be done without any risk from undue sponsorship or anything else that might allow its conclusions to risk being compromised. Perhaps Crowd Funding might one day be the answer.

That brings me to my own current crowd funding campaign which is just entering its final two weeks. To date, it has raised just under 20% its target of $25k. I am told it is not unusual for the bulk of funds to materialise in the final stages. I must hope this is the case. So far, with some notable exceptions, the reaction from our Shroud community has been disappointing. Are they holding back until now or simply turning their back? This post, by way of its comments, may well allow me to find out. I am proud to have got the endorsement of many but not least, Bruno Barberis, himself.  Getting the backing of a former Archbishop also gave me some grounds for optimism. 

The secret of crowd funding is revealed in the name. It is about many giving a little. $10 is all it takes to, at least, show some moral support and, collectively, a great deal more. I have been very disappointed that so few "shroudies" have felt able to. So, I ask them here. Please tell me through your comments to this why you think such a donation is not worth the potential upside?  Or alternatively, suggest a better way of bringing about a new climate for the Shroud and its study.

Click on the image below to participate

image

Categories: Crowdfunding, History, Science
  1. September 11, 2013 at 9:41 am

    I’ll be honest. I’d be more likely to drop something in the hat if it was going to a research fund with the product being new scientific data on the Shroud. I’m not that interested in funding a fictional film about the Shroud with the hope it may spur the Vatican and others to proceed with the scientific project. There have been umpteen works of fiction about the Shroud, like the many cloning angles, and none of these have spurred any new science. I suspect many Shroudies have not contributed for this reason. As was stated, we all fell the going around in circles because there’s no new data to examine. We’re all craving new data — if I can fund that directly I’m all in.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 11, 2013 at 10:46 am

      I go exactly in the same direction as yours David. Personally, I think the best thing that could happen to Shroud science is what I said the other day in another comment, which is to see the coming of a new association of scientists (like STURP or ASSIST but surely not like the SSG) that would clearly dissociate themselves from any supernatural hypothesis versus the Shroud as well as from any affiliation with any religious groups in order to be seen as completely independent of mind with no religious bias and no other motives than to find the truth about the Shroud, no matter what this truth could be. The first thing such a real scientific team should do would be to build a solid test plan for a future round of direct research on the cloth.

      I think that this is the very best thing that could eventually influenced the Vatican to go ahead to allow a new series of direct tests on the cloth as well as giving permission to use the material collected during the 2002 restoration for research (that means that the test plan of this hypothetical team of unbiased scientists should include some researches on this material).

      Mr. Rolfe wants to find a way to “force” the hand of the Vatican and I understand his feelings, but I truly don’t think a new movie about the Shroud (no matter how good it can be) will change anything to the present situation… That’s my personal feeling and, of course, I can be wrong about that.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 11, 2013 at 11:04 am

      Additional comment: If one day, the kind of scientific team I mentioned could become a reality, if those who will be at the head of such a team wants to remain credible and stay away from any association with some supernatural or religious things, they won’t have no other choice other than exclude from the team every present researcher who have already proposed or publicly support an image formation hypothesis involving some kind of supernatural release of energy from the dead body. Cause if they don’t do that, it’s evident that their team will lose a good deal of its credibility in the eyes of the scientific community… This kind of exclusion of many actual sindonologists would be a « must » for such a team and I truly believe that this is only then that the Vatican could be really tempted to go ahead with a new series of direct research on the relic. When I see how things are going in the Shroud world, I don’t expect to see the formation of such an INDEPENDENT and UNBIASED team in a near future unfortunately.

      • September 11, 2013 at 11:23 am

        Would they also have to exclude any researcher who believes that the shroud is a forgery? The threat of confirmation bias runs both ways. Finding open minded, unbiased scientists may be the most challenging aspect of such a project.

      • Yannick Clément
        September 11, 2013 at 12:02 pm

        You’re funny… Don’t you know that it is scientifically possible that the Shroud can be a forgery (only in the case such a forgery would have been done with a real crucified body), while it is SCIENTIFICALLY IMPOSSIBLE that a dead body can emit energetic radiations as it was proposed by some?

        Keep on allowing such “scientist” in your group and I can ensure you that the scientific community will keep on looking at you with a big smile…

  2. Louis
    September 11, 2013 at 11:47 am

    There is another thing to add, Yannick. The Church does not want the faithful to base their faith on relics.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 11, 2013 at 12:03 pm

      Very good point. That can explain why they are not in a haste to allow a new series of direct researches on the cloth…

  3. O.K.
    September 11, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    Guys, haven’t you all forget that there is not just the Shroud (and the Sudarium) to examine. There is a plenty of other relics, such as Tunic of Argenteuil, Manopello Image, Holy Cap of Cahors, Seamless Robe of Trier, Holy Nails, Corwn of Thorns in Paris, that still await for proper examination! Many of them have possible connections to the Shroud, and some of them were even widely reported (for example results of research of the Tunic of Argenteuil), but not heard in the Angloshephere. The world doesn’t end on the Shroud. There is a plenty of other discoveries, of which most of the ‘Shroudies’ are not even aware of! The new research is continuously on the way, and stop crying that the Vatican doesn’t allow for new direct examination of the Shroud.

    • September 11, 2013 at 12:54 pm

      The majority of these, if authentic, are relics. The Manopello is dubious as a relic, more likely a work of art. None stand as enigmatic signs like the Shroud. They do not carry the same mystery — namely the mode of image formation. Not they are not worthy of deeper study and historical appreciation — but they simply do not spark the imagination like the Shroud does.

      Your call for more patience, however, is well taken. When the time is right, when the technology is ready, when the Church is in the mood — the science will get done.

      • Yannick Clément
        September 11, 2013 at 1:00 pm

        I agree with this comment, except for one thing: I think the technology is more than ready for a new series of direct research on the Shroud. I believe for the Church, it’s more a question of bad timing for the moment. Too much supernatural freaks out there…

  4. Yannick Clément
    September 11, 2013 at 12:59 pm

    Before things went off-track too much, I would like to explain better what I meant in my first comment : It’s not our personal opinion about the image formation that count. In fact, it’s not important at all. What count is the credibility of the scientific team I proposed. That’s why I think it’s imperative that such a team, if it could get formed one day, to exclude every possible researcher who have already proposed an image formation hypothesis involving some supernatural process link with the Resurrection of Christ, for the simple and good reason that such an hypothesis needs faith to be accepted. But having said that, I also think such a team, in order to stay independent of mind versus every possible explanation for the image formation, and also in order to be seen by the scientific community as truly unbiased, should also exclude every researcher who already have proposed another form of image formation (whether it be based on a natural formation involving an interaction between the corpse and the cloth or a formation involving some form of artistic technique). In sum, such a team should be only composed of people who never have proposed or defended any image formation hypothesis that can exist. That’s only with a team of this nature that there could be some chances that the Vatican allowed a new series of direct research on the relic and the scientific community could be willing to accept their eventual conclusions versus the Shroud. I truly believe this.

    • September 11, 2013 at 1:32 pm

      Agreed! A team with no vested interest in the Shroud. Completely neutral. There are probably many such scientists in places like China, India, Japan, where the Shroud is not part of the cultural background noise.

      • Yannick Clément
        September 11, 2013 at 2:08 pm

        I even think there are many in America and in Europe… Especially those who are agnostics about questions like God or the Resurrection of Jesus. I don’t see any problem to form a team like that and the one who could initiate the project is the Vatican itself via his Pontifical academy for science.

  5. Louis
    September 11, 2013 at 1:01 pm

    It is not just the Vatican, there are churches where relics are kept and where the clergymen in charge are simply not interested in research even when a proposal comes from a renowned scientist with very good intentions.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 11, 2013 at 1:05 pm

      We’re talking about the Shroud here Louis. I don’t think Turin would have much to say against the will of the Vatican if the Pope decide to allow a new series of direct tests.

      • Louis
        September 11, 2013 at 2:30 pm

        I was not referring to Turin, Yannick, there are other dioceses with relics, but unfortunately I have no permission to give details.

  6. Yannick Clément
    September 11, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    By the way, here’s a message for Mr. Rolfe and any other person who believe the image on the Shroud is directly related to the Resurrection of Christ:

    I hope you won’t pass-by my recent long comment on this subject. Here’s the link to it: https://shroudstory.com/2013/09/04/thoughts-on-the-newly-published-paper-by-ray-rogers/#comment-43603

    I hope everyone will have a nice reading following by a nice and honest reflection!

  7. Hugh Farey
    September 11, 2013 at 1:36 pm

    I think that (as quite often) I disagree with Yannick about the constitution of an imaginary Scientific team. Allow me a ‘thought-experiement,’ in which the owner of the shroud says he will allow anybody at all to suggest experiments to be carried out, which will be permitted or denied according to how destructive they are of the shroud. What matters is not the opinions of the scientists involved, but the experiments they suggest. For instance:

    Hypothetical Scientist A thinks the shroud is coated in a thick layer of titanium oxide. He suggests an X-ray spectrographic analysis of three small areas. If titanium is found in quantity, he thinks his hypothesis is well founded. if not, not. This experiment is easy to do, and its results unequivocal (well more or less).

    Hypothetical Scientist B thinks the shroud is a miracle. What experiment does he suggest? What outcome of his experiment will support his hypothesis? If he can suggest anything, I think he should be allowed to carry it out.

    Both these Scientists hold highly unorthodox views, but at least one of them can suggest an experiment that could be carried out to the agreement of everybody. I’m not sure about the other one. Any ideas?

    • Yannick Clément
      September 11, 2013 at 2:16 pm

      I think the hypothetical neutral and independent scientific team I proposed should first and foremost carried experiments that will, once and for all, settle the question of the image chromophore. That’s crucial and, to me, that’s where the « secret » of the Shroud really lies. Once we would be sure that Rogers was right on that very important question versus the thin and uneven layer of impurities he proposed (or if he wasn’t, once we’ll be sure of what else could it be), I think it would become much easier for true scientists to accept or reject every image formation processes that have been proposed over the years and, surely, to develop some new ones that will have more chances to be close to the target. In sum, if I had to build a new test plan, my priority would be to determine beyond any reasonable doubts what the image chromphore really is and in order to do this, I’m affraid new direct sampling would be needed for a new series of microchemical tests (which would certainly be much more accurate than the ones performed by STURP at the time).

    • Yannick Clément
      September 11, 2013 at 2:22 pm

      Good question : How can you judge the true pertinence of someone’s hypothesis for image formation if you’re not 100% convinced of what element(s) (carbohydrate impurities or pcw of the linen fiber or both or some other kind of impurities, etc.) have been colored in the image area of the Shroud? Determining completely what is the image chromophore is truly the most important thing such a team should do.

      • September 11, 2013 at 2:36 pm

        Is such testing possible today with non-destructive methods?

      • Yannick Clément
        September 11, 2013 at 2:40 pm

        I’m sure it would be possible to do so, as long as the sampling method is as good as the one developed by Rogers back then as he used stocky tapes that left no residues on the cloth. I think today, the best sampling method would be to extract some sample of linen with some surgical instruments instead of sticky tapes.

  8. O.K.
    September 11, 2013 at 1:40 pm

    David Goulet :
    The majority of these, if authentic, are relics. The Manopello is dubious as a relic, more likely a work of art. None stand as enigmatic signs like the Shroud. They do not carry the same mystery — namely the mode of image formation. Not they are not worthy of deeper study and historical appreciation — but they simply do not spark the imagination like the Shroud does.
    Your call for more patience, however, is well taken. When the time is right, when the technology is ready, when the Church is in the mood — the science will get done.

    They do not carry the same mystery? The Manoppello, relic or not (I am not a fanatic, and open for any possibility) for example is claimed to have holographic properties, there are several images (with open and closed mouth for example) encoded in this transparent veil. Tunic of Argenteuil -it was already determined in 1934 (and once again by Marion in 1997) that the blood marks on the back of the Tunic match with wounds of the Man of the Shroud! The blood of the Tunic has been determined as AB, the same as on the Shroud and Sudarium. What’s more the crystals of urea attached to blood cells were found on the Tunic, indicating that it’s owner, sweated with blood, just like described in Luke! Investigations into purpoted nails, remmants of the cross, 9as weel as Good Thief’s patibulum, still kept in Rome) may give valuable information about methods of Roman crucifixion. And you say that they do not carry the same mystery. I think you are totally wrong! They SHARE the same mystery as the Shroud! Together with it, they are a part of much greater image! The other relics contain many complemtary information, which may be great help in Shroud research! Sadly they are still not appreciated in the Shroud world. The large amount of info they contain is still IGNORED by most of the Shroud research, especially in the English world. Not only because this world doesn’t know about them. It doesn’t want to know about them! And THAT’S A SHAME!

    • September 11, 2013 at 2:32 pm

      By mystery I mean an inexplicable component — something outside of human history. Relics are objects of history and while the Shroud is partly that, it is much more. This doesn’t mean the other relics have no historic or spiritual value. And if the links to the Shroud could be further studied the results would obviously have importance to sindonology. But their authenticity is more dependent on the Shroud’s than the reverse, no? Prove the Shroud is authentic and these related items will of course become more popular too. I’ll have to delve more into the Manoppello (based on your comments). Again, I’m not trying to discourage study of these interesting relics.

      If one wishes to visit Mars, this doesn’t preclude studying the moon. But Mars is Mars.

      • O.K.
        September 11, 2013 at 2:35 pm

        David: I’ll have to delve more into the Manoppello (based on your comments).

        See this page, although created by believer, it is really good:
        http://manoppello.eu/eng/

        You will see what English Shroud world has ommited so far.

    • September 11, 2013 at 5:11 pm

      Dear David – Read the 2005 article on the Manoppello by Roberto Falcinelli at http://www.shroud.com/pdfs/roberto.pdf. It has been available online for 8 years.

  9. O.K.
    September 11, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    Yannick Clément :
    I even think there are many in America and in Europe… Especially those who are agnostics about questions like God or the Resurrection of Jesus. I don’t see any problem to form a team like that and the one who could initiate the project is the Vatican itself via his Pontifical academy for science.

    And start everything from the begining, forgetting experience of STURP, Italians and any other Shroud resaerchers accumulated over the years. No Yannick. It was the same pretext that was used to move away the STURP from the Shroud in 1988. No Yannick. Agnostics are by no means better choice for Shroud research than catholics. They may be biased as well as the believers. The personal honesty is, I think, independent from religious believes.
    And one another thing: the preconviction that the nature of the image must be purely natural, is the same BIAS, like preconviction that it must be supernatural. NO DIFFERENCE HERE, contrary to naive vision of Yannick still thinking like 19th century positivists.

    The problem with Vatican is, I think, not that they don’t want to give the Shroud to the scientists, but they don’t know WHOM should they give it. There are many camps of Shroud researchers, and mad rivalisation, unbelievable envy even among the pro guys effectively DISCOURAGE Vatican from allowing for further examinations. The main question is WHO SHOULD PERFORM FURTHER EXAMINATIONS? Who? Whom give the Shroud to? No matter the choice, there will be always a cry of the others who will not have been given the ‘toy’ to play.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 11, 2013 at 2:25 pm

      You should read the definition of what is an agnostic… I’m not talking of a militant atheist here. I’m talking of a scientist who has no definitive opinion on the Shroud, the Resurrection or even on God and who would then be free to examine the relic without any preconceive notions.

      • O.K.
        September 11, 2013 at 2:32 pm

        I know who agnostics are. And I would say there are some ‘militant agnostics’ also! There are no unbiased people, believe me.Religious affilation in the Shroud research plays rather minimal role, if any. And I don’t see the reason why should we exclude catholics for example. Agnostics are by no means better than anyone else.

        However the ideology and philosophy plays important, or even crucial role in Shroud research and interpretating of the results. You believe that the image on the Shroud is purely natural. Some believe that it must be supernatural. Both opinions are on equal footing. But they are both just BELIEVES, and nothing else. Don’t mix science with philosophy, Yannick!

      • Yannick Clément
        September 11, 2013 at 2:42 pm

        In the end, agnostic, atheist or faithful, that’s not the main question for me. The most important thing is this: do they have already developed or publicly defended one or more image formation process (supernatural or not)? If the answer is yes, then such a person should be left out of the project in my opinion… Too much danger of bias.

  10. September 11, 2013 at 2:42 pm

    O.K. :
    IAnd I don’t see the reason why should we exclude catholics for example.

    True. But one of the most compelling aspects of the STURP investigation was how you had ‘neutral’ scientists like Barry and Ray, among others, who became pro-authenticity. This is why I’m in favour of truly agnostic (regarding the Shroud) scientists being involved. Because if they do become pro-authenticity it is more significant.

  11. O.K.
    September 11, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    Yannick Clément :
    The most important thing is this: do they have already developed or publicly defended one or more image formation process (supernatural or not)? If the answer is yes, then such a person should be left out of the project in my opinion… Too much danger of bias.

    I have the better solution, neutralise the bias with the opposite bias! Create a team from those who believe one thing, and those who believe the opposite thing. And let them cooperate and test their ideas.

  12. Kelly Kearse
    September 11, 2013 at 5:18 pm

    Find the best scientists that are available to work on it-period. Screening out scientists based on their religious affiliation or personal beliefs is an immature attitude. A scientists professional research record should represent the criteria. These types of suggestions are much like listening to an armchair quarterback on Monday morning who has all of the answers how the team should/have could have played. Yet, they themselves have never taken the field, worn the uniform. A professional scientist is entitled to beliefs just like anyone else. A professional scientist is capable of objectively analyzing data-it can be done. These types of rantings of what “good science is really is” by those who have never been in the trenches are a good example why the scientific community may tend to dismiss certain aspects of information attached to the Shroud -it is totally disconnected from how science can and does operate in the real world. Why such fear? This type of ensuring against bias is in itself bad practice because it itself is biased-science progresses by remaining objective, not stacking the deck towards one’s own personal opinion

    • Yannick Clément
      September 12, 2013 at 10:50 am

      Quote: “A professional scientist is capable of objectively analyzing data-it can be done.”

      My answer: There are plenty of examples in sindonology of “scientists” completely biased by their faith in Christ. I have given recently a very good example of this concerning Di Lazzaro and Fanti. And there are plenty more. Pretending that every Christian scientist is able to keep his faith in his back pocket while studying the Shroud is completely ludicrous and disconnected from reality.

      And here’s a good one for you: It’s not because I’m not a scientist myself that I’m so dumb that I could believe every sindonologist has absolutely no bias in favor of the authenticity of the Shroud and/or in favor of a supernatural image formation process (while the whole portrait given by all the data point in the opposite direction, i.e. an image formed by a natural process)!

      And here’s a good question for you: How could I trust the eventual conclusions of someone who already had made up his mind about the Shroud image formation (someone like Fanti for example) and who would be allowed to touch the Shroud during the next round of direct researches on the relic??? No way I could trust anything coming from such a person, sorry.

      That’s why I say that if a new scientific team is allowed by the Vatican to touch and analyzed the Shroud in the future, such a team will have to leave on the side every possible researcher who have already proposed a hypothesis concerning the image formation (no matter if it is a natural or a supernatural image formation hypothesis), or else, the conclusions of this team will forever be questionable… This is exactly the actual situation of the recent conclusions of Fanti versus the age of the Shroud. Because of his evident bias in favor of the authenticity of the cloth, his conclusions will forever be questionable.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 12, 2013 at 11:50 am

      Complementary comment : As I said yesterday, the problem for the creation of a totally unbiased team of scientists that would be completely indenpendent of mind in their quest for the truth regarding the Shroud (whatever this truth could be) would not be so much related to the kind of faith of the members of this team but to their personal opinion versus the Shroud and its image. In other words, I would prefer by far seeing the formation of a team of Christian scientists who have not publish or publicly propose any hypothesis about the relic and its image than seeing a the formation of a team of agnostic scientists that would include some researchers who already have done some study of the relic and have proposed some hypotheses (especially versus the kind of image formation that lead to the creation of the body image).

  13. Louis
    September 11, 2013 at 10:37 pm

    It is doubtful if the Church will rule out scientists depending on their religious affiliation if a fresh hands on examination will be allowed. There are other relics that could help solve the Shroud mystery, however access to them is generally not allowed or handling can pose a problem. The pdf interview-article with Fr. Pfeiffer on the Holy Shroud Guild website makes that clear.

  14. daveb of wellington nz
    September 12, 2013 at 1:57 am

    Kelly Kearse makes entirely valid points. Criteria should be based on the professional research record. No-one is exempt from any kind of bias, for it is part of the human condition. To think otherwise is immature. The Vatican is well-used to selecting appropriate investigators. The Medical Councils reporting on cures for Causes of Saints, and the two Councils in Lourdes for attestation of miracles are good examples. These Councils, although including Catholic doctors, are by no means exclusively Catholic. They also include Protestant and Agnostic medical experts.

    Certainly nothing will happen, until a funding source for Shroud research can be found. The STURP Project could only occur because strong efforts made were successful in finding the necessary funds. Funding itself may result in some bias if it were made conditional on the scope of the study. The matter will be decided on practical realities. For that reason alone, any eventual results may still be indecisive, and remain inconclusive.

  15. Kelly Kearse
    September 12, 2013 at 11:57 am

    And here’s a good question for you: How could I trust the eventual conclusions of someone who already had made up his mind about the Shroud image formation (someone like Fanti for example) and who would be allowed to touch the Shroud during the next round of direct researches on the relic??? No way I could trust anything coming from such a person, sorry.
    That’s why I say that if a new scientific team is allowed by the Vatican to touch and analyzed the Shroud in the future, such a team will have to leave on the side every possible researcher who have already proposed a hypothesis concerning the image formation (no matter if it is a natural or a supernatural image formation hypothesis), or else, the conclusions of this team will forever be questionable… This is exactly the actual situation of the recent conclusions of Fanti versus the age of the Shroud. Because of his evident bias in favor of the authenticity of the cloth, his conclusions will forever be questionable.

    And here’s a good answer for you: I don’t think you would trust the conclusion of anyone who did not agree with your opinion, because you yourself have already made up your mind. It would not matter what the background was of the person who collected it-your bias is as least as equal as any others you may accuse-this is compounded by the constant tautology of what “real science” is and isn’t, sans experience at the lab bench.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 12, 2013 at 1:05 pm

      That’s a cheap shot, but coming from you, it doesn’t affect me at all. It’s obvious that you never made up your mind yourself about the Shroud… Of course, being the great scientist that you are, it’s evident that you got no bias… Let me laugh.

      Hidding behind an argument so cheap is telling a lot about the guy who wrote it…

      My personal opinion about the Shroud or yours have absolutely nothing to do versus the FACT that there are a lot of researchers in the Shroud world who have biased views about the Shroud and, consequently, do not deserve the right to be on board of a future team of scientists who will directly examine the Shroud in Turin. And this is especially true for those who have already published some image formation hypotheses about the Shroud…

      For example, if Fanti is a member of this hypothetical team, don’t you think there is some very good chances that he will come to the conclusion that, effectively, the image chromophore is located in the primary cell wall (no matter if its really the case or not), knowing that it is the only image location that can fit with his corona discharge hypothesis, as it was clearly showed by Rogers in his book (after he did some experiments about that)? I really think so!

    • Yannick Clément
      September 12, 2013 at 1:43 pm

      One thing the great Kearse should noticed in my previous comments is the fact that I would be willing to exclude from the scientific team not only those who have pproposed an image formation process in link with the Resurrection of Christ but ALSO all those who have proposed a hypothesis involving some form of natural image formation. Here’s the meaning of this: If Rogers would still be alive, that mean I would not agree to see him being part of this hypothetical team of scientists who would directly examine the Shroud in Turin… That also mean I would not agree to see John DeSalvo or Alan Mills (among others) being part of the team. The heart of my reflection on the subject did not simply concern Fanti and every other « scientist » who have proposed supernatural hypotheses over the years but every one who committed himself publicly about the image, including those who proposed a hypothesis involving only a natural process. I hope I succeed to set the record straight here.

  16. Max Patrick Hamon
    September 12, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    Kelly 100% agreed! Yannick’s idea is just preposterous as far as science and archaeology are concerned. What is most needed is relevant and well-thought opinions on specific issues by specialists in the relevant fields.

  17. Hugh Farey
    September 12, 2013 at 1:29 pm

    No, Yannick, you’re missing the nature of scientific inquiry. It doesn’t matter that you think the coloured ghosts found on Mylar tape are degraded starch, while di Lazzaro thinks they are degraded hemicellulose. If either of you can design an experiment which can distinguish between the two, then you should be able to carry it out, appropriately supervised to make sure you don’t cheat. Perhaps you could do it together. If the results of the test were sufficiently clear (which you attempt to ensure by the design of the experiment), then which ever of you is correct will be confirmed.

  18. September 12, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    Does anyone know more about the predisposition of the STURP team going into their research? Had any of them made public their thoughts on the Shroud before the event? I’m just curious as it might give us something to compare against.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 12, 2013 at 2:32 pm

      Very good point. I seriously doubt that any member of the STURP team have written a scientific paper about the Shroud before he went to Turin and I’m almost sure no one from the STURP team had a “pet theory” about the image formation before they get to Turin. I hope that fact will really help people to understand the validity and the pertinence of my reflection on the subject…

      • O.K.
        September 12, 2013 at 2:35 pm

        But that was completely different situation, as there were no data available before Shroud examination in 1978 (which was done not only by the STURP, but by Italian team also, which is often forgotten!)

      • Yannick Clément
        September 12, 2013 at 3:49 pm

        I agree with you that this was a different situation for the reason you said but even more for this one: No STURP members had a “pet” theory to defend versus the Shroud, which is far from being the case of most sindonologists these days…

        STURP was mainly composed of real experts in various fields of research that could be related to the Shroud, which had no theories to sell or defend or pushed, and that’s exactly the kind of scientific team I would like to see for a next round of direct testing in Turin (note that I don’t care what could be their religious belief; I just care about their absence of “belief” versus the Shroud). That means maybe 75% (a rough estimation) of the present sindonologists should not be allowed to be part of such an INDEPENDENT team…

      • Yannick Clément
        September 12, 2013 at 4:00 pm

        Additional note: Before STURP, there was a scientific team composed principally of Italians (along with Frei and Gilbert Raes) who were allowed to perform direct testing of the cloth (in 1973). So, it is not true at all that there were no data available at the time the STURP team formed. Also, even before 1973, when the only available data were mainly the ones coming from the Pia and Enrie’s photographs , there were already some scientists who were confident enough to propose some image formation hypotheses (mainly natural by the way) like Vignon, Volckringer (his hypothesis was supported by Barbet in his book), etc.

        This fact should be enough to understand that, before they went to Turin in 1978, it would have been truly possible for any member of STURP to publish some papers defending one particular hypothesis for image formation. The truth is: no one did so!

  19. Kelly Kearse
    September 12, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    By no means is there any type of cheap shot involved: Science and the understanding of science is very important to me. You decide to write at great length about what is “good and honest” science is & what is not, expect to eventually be called on it by someone, somewhere who has practical, real life experience-science doesn’t operate as selectively as you wish to paint it. Talk the talk, walk the walk, that’s fair enough

    • Yannick Clément
      September 12, 2013 at 3:43 pm

      No matter how many Phd you got on your walls doesn’t make you someone with good judgement… And mine can very well be better than yours… Again, it’s not a question of how many Phd you got on your walls. It’s simply a question of analyzing how these guys are acting versus the known data.

      I have given well enough facts to support the intellectual dishonesty of guys like Fanti and Di Lazzaro and a bunch of others in the Shroud world (all of those are members of the SSG by the way and I don’t think it’s a hazard). And I can honestly say that I have talk enough with Barrie Schwortz who knew Ray Rogers very well to know that Rogers would have agree with me about this… All those guys should have nothing to do with the next series of direct testing on the Shroud. Or else, we’re done.

      I repeat it: If you think that every “scientist” involved in Shroud research these days as no bias versus the authenticity of the cloth and, worst of all, versus the idea that the image MUST have come from the Resurrection of Christ, that mean you’re completely disconnected from reality. It’s as obvious as the nose in anyone’s face that most of the “scientists” who have proposed supernatural hypothèses over the years have done so while completely putting aside (or consciously forgetting) some crucial facts and observations about the Shroud (or seriously distorted them) in order to back-up their preconceive ideas. And if I’m wrong about some of them, that simply means that these were not professional enough to seriously considered all the pertinent data and observations we know about the Shroud, which should be the basis of any good scientific research.

      In both cases, “scientist” like that absolutely don’t deserve the right to be on the next scientific team who will analyze the Shroud. Or else, this will be another big joke.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 12, 2013 at 4:47 pm

      Additional and important comment: No matter how many Phd you got on your walls doesn’t make you someone who automatically do science for the right reasons (which should be first and foremost to find the truth, no matter what this truth could be) and with intellectual honesty…

      I fully aware of the fact that, in the Shroud world, many researchers are seeking their own little religious or supernatural truth instead of searching the real truth about this relic, which can imply that, in the end, you can end up proving it false… I really don’t think this is the kind of “pure” motives that drive most of the sindonologists these days. Of course, this is only my personal opinion.

      But I can say that one of the biggest reason that makes me feel this way is how the researches and conclusions of someone like Ray Rogers (someone who was probably the man who understood the reality of this relic better than anyone else and who knew what he was talking about when it comes to energetic radiations) were poorly received by a good portion of the sindonologists (and were constantly attacked since he died). To me, this show an evident bias in favor of the idea that the image must be directly related to the Resurrection than it’s almost laughable…

  20. September 12, 2013 at 3:07 pm

    O.K. :
    But that was completely different situation, as there were no data available before Shroud examination in 1978 (which was done not only by the STURP, but by Italian team also, which is often forgotten!)

    This is true. But didn’t several of the team come in assuming they would be working with a piece of man-made art? Undoubtedly some would have had that initial bias, yet it doesn’t seem to have impeded their scientific approach. Nor those that may have been leaning to a pro-authentic conclusion.

    Perhaps I’m trying to find a middle ground in all this discussion. Because the landscape is so different than in 1978, when their didn’t exist a cottage industry for Shroud materials, I think Yannick makes a fair point that if someone has a very strong existing theory — one which they have published books supporting and would have something to gain or lose based on the results of new studies — then there is a danger of confirmation bias or at least the perception of it. This person brings an element of risk.

    On the other hand it would be silly to exclude scientists just because they may be coming into it with existing thoughts on the Shroud. I suppose ideally it would be good to have a mix of Shroud-knowledgeable scientists (a Kelly Kearse for example) and some hardly knowledgeable ones. That way you avoid reinventing the wheel while also utilizing fresh eyes that might hit upon something as yet undiscovered.

    As with all things, a healthy balance will produce the best results. Not that I can prove that scientifically. :)

    • Yannick Clément
      September 12, 2013 at 4:53 pm

      Quote: “On the other hand it would be silly to exclude scientists just because they may be coming into it with existing thoughts on the Shroud. I suppose ideally it would be good to have a mix of Shroud-knowledgeable scientists (a Kelly Kearse for example) and some hardly knowledgeable ones. That way you avoid reinventing the wheel while also utilizing fresh eyes that might hit upon something as yet undiscovered.”

      My answer: I agree with this opinion and, seriously, I never said something different… I would not have any problem seeing someone like Mr. Kearse on this team because he never published or defended (at least, as I know) a particular image formation hypothesis. I would just have a huge problem seeing someone who spent years defending a “pet” theory about the Shroud image (no matter if its related to the Resurrection or not) be a part of that team… As you said David, too much risk of bias. Here, we must remember that a good portion of a scientific research is based on INTERPRETATION of data, which can easily go off-track if you have the secret desire to prove your own ideas about something…

      Can we at least all agree on such a thing????

  21. Paulette
    September 12, 2013 at 5:00 pm

    YC is just plain too rude.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 13, 2013 at 8:32 am

      Or maybe it’s just that truth hurts some people… ;-) I won’t change my style because that’s who I am.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 13, 2013 at 8:58 am

      As I often say, it’s not how I say things but what I say that matter (at least, this is what should matter, but I realize that it’s not often that way)… Also, if some people could be honest for once, they would realize that a lot of people on this blog as been as hard with me than I been hard with them and I don’t lose time anymore complaining about that because it’s not important at all. Again, I’ll repeat it : it’s what people say that matter, not how they say it. And people should also realize this other truth : Bullshit and stupid things are often enveloped in a very nice and polite discourse… ;-)

      • September 13, 2013 at 10:10 am

        What is the point in talking straight if I do it without charity?

      • Yannick Clément
        September 13, 2013 at 10:48 am

        It would be nice if you could note how someone like Mr. Kearse constantly try to discredit every opinions that I express and that are different than his own opinions on the false basis that I don’t have the same amount of diplomas as he has on his walls… In such a context, don’t expect me to be nice and polite with someone as condescending as him.

        When he will learn to exchange with me as an equal (as I said the other, it’s because I don’t have a Phd like him that my judgement must be worst than him), then I will be less hard in my replies.

        It is as simple as this and you will most probably react the same way than I if he would use the same condescension in his exhanges with you…

        For me, it’s pretty evident that Kearse has a lot of problem accepting the fact that a non-scientific like me can be right about some aspects of the Shroud that doesn’t fit with his own ideas, for example when I say that the whole portrait of the data coming from the Shroud indicates that the image is most probably the product of a totally natural process and also when I say that if “scientists” who publicly defend the idea that the image is related with the Resurrection of Christ will be on the future team that will examine the Shroud in Turin, this will completely discredit their conclusions in the eyes of the public, as well as in the eyes of a good portion of the scientific community…

      • Yannick Clément
        September 13, 2013 at 11:31 am

        Additonal note (and I hope everyone here will listen carefully): There are two things in life that I just can’t stand when I exchange with someone : Dishonesty and condescending. If you avoid these using these two things with me, you’ll find our exchange being very nice and fruitful.

      • Yannick Clément
        September 13, 2013 at 11:32 am

        Here’s the correct version of my previous comment:

        Additonal note (and I hope everyone here will listen carefully): There are two things in life that I just can’t stand when I exchange with someone : Dishonesty and condescending. If you avoid using these two things with me, you’ll find our exchange being very nice and fruitful.

  22. Kelly Kearse
    September 12, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    Paulette :
    YC is just plain too rude.

    This.

    It’s a serious matter to impugn the integrity and intellectual honesty of a scientist, even if the primary goal is to discredit those who may differ in opinion.

  23. Louis
    September 12, 2013 at 6:42 pm

    Kelly, don’t forget the realm of Shroud studies is a minefield, some have stepped out, others, with more patience and persistence, have not. As a scientist your views, needless to say, will always be welcome and taken seriously.
    By the way, how many cigars are you smoking now?
    Best.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 13, 2013 at 10:52 am

      Quote: “As a scientist your views, needless to say, will always be welcome and taken seriously.”

      My comment: Of course, it’s important to take into account what a real expert in one particular field related to sindonology has to say but that doesn’t mean signing him a blank check, while accepting as facts everything that can come out of his mouth. It’s true for Kelly Kearse and it’s also true for any other researcher. In other words, we should never lose our critical sense just because someone is profesionnaly qualify in one scientific field. As I said yesterday, history is full of good example of scientist who were completely dishonest and who had very bad judgement on some particular topics… We must always listen to what they have to say about the Shroud, while always stay very prudent and watch out for possible bias.

  24. Kelly Kearse
    September 12, 2013 at 8:50 pm

    Louis :
    Kelly, don’t forget the realm of Shroud studies is a minefield, some have stepped out, others, with more patience and persistence, have not. As a scientist your views, needless to say, will always be welcome and taken seriously.
    By the way, how many cigars are you smoking now?
    Best.

    About 3 a week :)

    • Louis
      September 12, 2013 at 9:21 pm

      So you come closer to John Kennedy rather than Churchill and Fidel Castro when it comes to cigars. It seems that your Shroud science is appreciated by many. Keep your fingers crossed that you make it to any team the Vatican may form for a fresh hands on examination of the Shroud in the future.

  25. September 13, 2013 at 11:47 am

    Yannick Clément :
    Here’s the correct version of my previous comment:
    Additonal note (and I hope everyone here will listen carefully): There are two things in life that I just can’t stand when I exchange with someone : Dishonesty and condescending. If you avoid using these two things with me, you’ll find our exchange being very nice and fruitful.

    Yannick, I would never accuse you, or anyone else here, of dishonesty. As for condescending…it is said we often accuse of others the very faults we suffer ourselves. Just an observation, not an accusation. :)

    • Yannick Clément
      September 13, 2013 at 12:04 pm

      I don’t have problem accusing people of dishonesty if I got very good reason to do so.

      And for being condescending, if you think I am, that’s your freedom. I really don’t think I am. I always try hard to debate ideas with honesty while never trying to make the other one in front of me feeling like he’s a dumb… Acting like this is not being condescending David.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 13, 2013 at 1:03 pm

      Additional comment: I’m fully aware of the fact that I’m not perfect (and I’m the first one to admit it since I am a sinner like anyone else), but one thing I know is the fact that I never tried to elevate myself while crushing others with condescending arguments like : « I have read more things about the Shroud than you, consequently you’re a dumb and your opinion as no value. »

      And one thing’s for sure: In the present debate, it is certainly not I who used condescending arguments like that, but Kelly Kearse… It would be nice if you could at least recognize this FACT. And if you’re still unsure about that, I dare you to say to me that such a comment is not condescending: “These types of suggestions are much like listening to an armchair quarterback on Monday morning who has all of the answers how the team should/have could have played.”

      On this particular quote from Kearse, I would only say this: You don’t need to be a professional quaterback to see if one of them is not playing a fair game… All you need here is a brain that works all right and a GOOD JUDGEMENT to interpret the facts correctly!

      Having said that, I just need to say that I don’t care too much if people do not agree with me (in fact, I already know that, on this blog, most people do not agree with me), but if you want to debate with me, please be honest and avoid using condescendence. That’s all I ask. A lot of times, scientists have a bad tendency to think they are the center of the Universe and that anyone who don’t have the same expertise they got have absolutely no right to criticise them or simply disagree with them, which is just simply false. In fact, this is totally false because it’s a fact that there are scientists who are dishonest and/or who don’t have a good judgement, so they can well be more off-track than me or you.

      Final note: I want to make things clear on the fact that I don’t think Mr. Kearse is dishonest at all. I just want to denunciate the fact that, when he exchange with me, he his very often condescending and I would like to see him stop doing that (with me or with anyone else).

      • September 13, 2013 at 2:38 pm

        The arm chair QB comment was condescending. But it didn’t come unprovoked. But this is becoming more and more a counselling session and less about science. Let us agree that we are all imperfect and to endeavour to be charitable in our posts. Even if that may be a penance at times.

      • Yannick Clément
        September 13, 2013 at 3:04 pm

        This is a comment way too much moralizing to me, but I will try to make an effort to be more polite. But as I said, if people stop using dishonesty and/or condescending, that will be much more easier for me.

  26. Louis
    September 13, 2013 at 11:58 am

    Kelly has kept an open mind and so has Ramsey, who believes the Shroud is a fake, and is a practicing Christian. Any new testing will have to involve the Vatican, the Pontifical Academy of Science, the Archdiocese of Turin and a committee formed by scientists who are carefully chosen.

    In 1988 both Cardinal Ballestrero and Edward Hall did not believe in the authenticity of the Shroud and look what happened. One must add that Professor Carlos Chagas also believed it was a fake, but his protocols were brushed aside by Professor Gonella (who knows what he believed?) and Professor Riggi took just one sample — from the dirtiest site of the relic.

    The Church is 2000 years old and learns from mistakes and it is up to the Pope to decide what to do.

  27. Yannick Clément
    September 13, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    As usual on this blog, things have went off-track and not a little! I think this new comment could help to bring back the exchanges on the right target. Remember that the topic concerned Mr. Rolfe’s movie project. Here’s my opinion about that : If he’s so desperate to see things moving in Turin or at the Vatican in favor of a new series of direct tests on the Shroud, I really and honestly believe his choice to make a new movie is not the best one. Of course, since Mr. Rolfe is a movie maker, it’s normal that he want to use what he know the best, but I think he would have much more chances to achieve his goal by finding one real biochemist or one real physician interested by the Shroud but who have not proposed or publicly supported any image formation process until now and who is not a supernatural and/or a religious freak and try to convince him to design a first draft of what could be the next test plan for a future scientific team that could be allowed to do a new series of direct tests on the Shroud. After this, such a draft should be presented at a future Shroud conference and, if it receive a nice welcome, then the next step should be to find other INDEPENDENT experts versus the Shroud who worked in other relevant scientific fields and ask them if they would be interested to join the team in order to refine the first draft of the test plan and eventually to propose it to the Turin authorities… By doing this, I’m truly convinced that Mr. Rolfe would have more chances to see things starting to move the way he wants, much more than by making a new movie about the Shroud. Of course, this is just my opinion.

    • September 13, 2013 at 2:45 pm

      Thanks for bringing us back to the original topic. I would add that Mr Rolfe could still pitch this as a film project, but as another documentary rather than a fiction feature. He is extremely qualified in this regard and a documentary about not only a new scientific study, but the very process to reach that point (selection of the team, wrangling permission from the Church) would make for natural drama. The circus that surrounds the Shroud is as fascinating as the Shroud itself at times – as this blog attests to. That would make for a compelling film – with the real meat of it being the coverage of the new research. I would whole-heartedly support that kind of film project. As I said in the beginning, a fictional tale just doesn’t grab my imagination like the real object itself.

      • Yannick Clément
        September 13, 2013 at 3:15 pm

        Interesting comment. But in the end, what I would like best to see is a real serious scientist coming at a Shroud conference to propose a new test plan for a future round of direct tests on the Shroud. This would be much more concrete to me and would be, as I said, the very best thing to do right now to “force” the hand of the Church a bit. I remember that one researcher proposed a paper of that nature a long time before during a Shroud conference, but this seem to have died fast unfortunatelly. Would like to remember the name of the guy and the title of his paper.

      • Yannick Clément
        September 13, 2013 at 3:22 pm

        I think the guy who did something like a new test plan proposal was a member of the STURP team but I don’t remember who exactly nor when did he presented his proposal. I just remember that it was during a Shroud conference…

  28. Thibault HEIMBURGER
    September 13, 2013 at 3:29 pm

    David, you wrote:
    “Among the reasons cited by Bruno Barberis for the Vatican being reluctant to proceed further with another scientific examination is, believe it or not, the question of money.”

    What are the other reasons given by Barberis ?
    I think the answer is crucial to understand the attitude of the Vatican and to try to develop a strategy.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 13, 2013 at 3:48 pm

      I think more than money, the main reason of this reluctance of the Vatican to go ahead is the fact that there are too much supernatural freaks who pretend to be scentists with a true independence of mind, along with the fact that since the STURP team, no united team of scientists like this (including real experts in all the most pertinent fields of research concerning the Shroud) as see the light and have submitted a solid proposition of test plan to the Church.

      I have some hopes that when this will happen some day, that will be the “green light” the Church is waiting for. Not just a proposal from one or two researchers who work in their corner, but a real team effort from a group of true scientists who will respect science enough to dissociate themselves completely and publicly from any supernatural or religious notions.

      When this will happen, you will tell me if I’m right about that.

  29. Kelly Kearse
    September 13, 2013 at 4:10 pm

    A closing comment: I do not feel that any of my remarks were condescending, including the one about the armchair QB. Pointed, yes, but appropriate (in my opinion). When a cough persists for such a long time, the use of castor oil can be warranted.

    Science has been a major part of my life for 50+ years. I have always considered the practice of science an honor and a privilege. In my opinion, many of the recent writings about what “good science is and isn’t” misrepresent the scientific profession and the practice of science. Therefore, I chose to challenge this.

    When I read the subject written about in such length and in such an authoritative tone, that this is how “science should and can really work”, etc. as a scientist, I take issue with the lack of hands-on experience and the presentation of what is (in my opinion) a distorted and misdirected view.

    I also find it very inappropriate to question the conduct of individual scientists (by name) and groups of scientists as being dishonest and skewing results to be in agreement with their personal beliefs. I find this offensive on both a professional and a personal level-but that is another matter.

    I am glad the suggestion has been made to return to the original topic. I myself was going to make a similar comment yesterday but never got around to it.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 13, 2013 at 4:29 pm

      Quote: ” also find it very inappropriate to question the conduct of individual scientists (by name) and groups of scientists as being dishonest and skewing results to be in agreement with their personal beliefs.”

      IT IS A FACT! That’s all I can say. Read this please: https://shroudstory.com/2013/09/05/thoughts-on-the-thoughts-on-the-newly-published-paper-by-ray-rogers/#comment-43348

      After this, if you still think Fanti and his gang are honest and Professional in their way to do science, you’re much more naive from reality than I thought.

      So, if I follow your opinion, I should give a blank check to every supernatural and religious freaks who pretend to do good science versus the Shroud (there is a big bunch of them in sindonology) and completely buy blindly all their supernatural conclusions while there is a real expert named Rogers who already have showed (with real experiments by the way) that their conclusions are incorrect? Forget it, I will never do that, and you should meditate on this: my reflection about those guys and their “science” is no more different than what Rogers thought about them… I think I got a pretty good guy to back me up!

      Look, you can still believe the image on the Shroud is due to the Resurrection, despite the fact that the whole portrait given by the most solid data and observations goes precisely in the opposite direction (i.e. an image most probably due to a natural process). This is your liberty in the end. I just disagree completely with you.

    • Yannick Clément
      September 13, 2013 at 4:38 pm

      Oh, by the way, you are very often condescending in your comments (especially “against” me) AND YOU KNOW IT… If you still deny that, I will have to add the tag “dishonest” to the “condecending” tag you already have.

      And be sure of this: You don’t need to have a ton of Phd on your wall to know how science should work and I know perfectly well that the kind of science done by Fanti, Di Lazzaro and many others sindonologist is just simply wrong (i.e. not done following the right steps any good research should). And the main reason why it is like that is this: those people have started their study of the Shroud with an evident preconceive notion of what MUST have formed the image on the cloth, i.e. the Resurrection of Christ. Believing otherwise would be a real proof of naivety…

      Everyone is good, everyone is nice, everyone is honest… That’s not how it goes in life and surely not in the Shroud world!

    • Yannick Clément
      September 13, 2013 at 4:47 pm

      One last thing concerning my hard critics of some people (which I call them by their names): Those people go on the public place and push their supernatural ideas whenever they can on TV interviews or documentary. Once you go publicly like this to defend and/or proposed and/or make believe in supernatural religious ideas like that, I HOPE YOU’RE READY TO RECEIVE SOME HITS FROM THOSE OF THE CROWD (LIKE ME AND LIKE ROGERS TOO) WHO HAVE AN INFINITE RESPECT FOR SCIENCE AND DON’T LIKE TO SEE RELIGIOUS AND/OR SUPERNATURAL FREAKS LIKE THIS USING IT FOR RELIGIOUS OR SOME OTHER NOT-SO-CATHOLIC PURPOSE.

      One thing’s for sure: Those people, if they keep on selling unscientific ideas like this to the world, will always see people like me on their road…

      • Yannick Clément
        September 13, 2013 at 4:49 pm

        Do we still live in a free world or what? Does freedom of speech still have a value around here?

        When polical correctness takes over the freedom of speech, that’s when things always start to go off-track and the quest for truth (whenever this truth can be) become in jeopardy.

  30. Louis
    September 13, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    The Church lost a lot of money with mistakes made by people working in the IOR – Vatican Bank and it is unlikely to finance another TS test. The relic is not an article of faith and the Church has never said that the image demonstrates the Resurrection and does not want the faithful to base their faith on relics.

  31. daveb of wellington nz
    September 13, 2013 at 5:20 pm

    There is already just about enough material in all the above exchanges to serve as a basis for a comedic satiric Monty-Pythonesque film script. However I suspect John Cleese is no longer in the business.

    Turning to the serious business of setting up a new scientific study of the Shroud, one could not do better than researching the background history of the STURP project. Some of this is outlined in Ian Wilson’s 2010 “The Shroud”, chapter 5 ‘Under the Microscope’. A more comprehensive and detailed story on the setting up of STURP is set out in the drafts of John Klotz’s forthcoming work “Quantum Christ”, particularly his chapter 7, ‘Game Change: Science Goes Deep, 1960-1978’. His Chapter 8 describes the ‘120 Hours in Turin’.

    The STURP team was to a certain extent self-selecting, but it comprised a very broad mix of several disciplines, a mix of pro-authenicists, those who were initially indifferent, and to some extent those who were initially anti-authenticist. It was able to exploit the opportunity of the 1978 exposition celebrating the 400th anniversary of the Shroud’s arrival in Turin. It proved to be the most detailed scientific investigation into the properties of the cloth and its image that had then been carried out. Even so, there were a number of aspects that were overlooked and missed, and not studied due to lack of time and preparation, unexpected, or possibly insufficient forethought. Each of course had his own discipline and specialty, and if a particular specialty was not included in the team, that aspect could not be given proper attention.

    An important aspect that is sometimes overlooked in discussions, is the question of funding, and the ernergy and efforts taken by a few individuals to raise the necessary, some $US2.5 million as at 1978.

    I’m inclined to the view that the only way a new STURP project might be implemented is if a small team of determined, qualified and competent people can set about formulating a definite game plan to bring it about. They would need to be of sufficient youth and energy to see the project through during their own likely life-times. Shroud conferences might be useful forums to air such a project and could generate useful discussion and ideas, and possibly provide useful avenues for specialist recruitment.

    One advantage STURP was able to exploit, was in being able to draw on contacts with close affiliation to Turin, particularly Father Rinaldi, who was able to ease the way for their work. Italy is not USA, nor the UK, nor for that matter Poland nor Switzerland. It has its own culture and way of doing things, and social contacts are important in being able to get things done.

    Without such a broad, concerted and determined approach by those comptent to do so, I fear nothing will otherwise happen. But if it does happen, expect to be prepared for a very long road ahead to see it through before a conclusion can come into sight.

    • September 13, 2013 at 6:42 pm

      Excellent background info, thanks Daveb. There is the modern-day advantage of the internet and crowd-funding possibilities (like this one) that didn’t exist in 1978, so this might help get things going a bit faster. It just needs one spark — I realize that is what David Rolfe is attempting to do with his film but I don’t know if that’s enough to strike the flint. It may take what a Hollywood movie requires to get greenlit: someone with deep pockets to be the big benefactor. Anyone got Mel Gibson’s number?

  1. No trackbacks yet.
Comments are closed.
%d bloggers like this: