This may be the Shroud of Turin Story of the Year

please don’t shoot. I’m just the messenger

imageRebecca Hamilton, an 18-year member of the Oklahoma House of Representatives, has just posted one of her 2013 Favs: New Tests Date the Shroud from the Time of Christ on the Public Catholic channel in Patheos (bold emphasis is hers):

Recents tests indicate that the Shroud of Turin was created somewhere between 300 BC and 400 AD.

This places its origin within the time of Christ. That does not mean that the Shroud is the burial cloth of Christ. But it does mean that it could be.

I am not a scientist, so I can’t evaluate the tests which have given us these dates. I can’t read the original documents written by the scientists who performed the tests because they are in Italian.

What I can do is tell you that I have read that the tests were preformed on the same strands taken from the Shroud for the 1988 carbon dating tests that concluded the Shroud originated in the Middle Ages. Scientists who performed the more recent tests which yielded the dates of origin for the Shroud that place it in the time of Christ say that the original samples were contaminated and that this is why they gave inaccurate results. They also say that the technology employed in these new tests yields more accurate results than that used in 1988.

If all this is true — and it has been published widely on various media — then it leaves us with the proposition that the Shroud is either genuine, or it is an extraordinary fake. The questions that come to mind are how someone of this era could have managed to fake something like the Shroud and why, since Christianity was a persecuted sect during much of the latter half of this time, would they do it?

She includes an interesting RNS clipping from the Washington Post. But what is most interesting is the direction the comments go in (19 so far). I also think Rep. Hamilton seems reasonably open-minded.

I hate to see, however, “They also say that the technology employed in these new tests yields more accurate results than that used in 1988.” because it just isn’t true. Who are they? Everyone I know, who might be classified as a “they” says the opposite.

Favorite Stupid, Stupid Science Picture for 2013

This was screen-grabbed from a YouTube video, Why the Shroud of Turin is a forgery? by Walter Hain:

image

I think this was my favorite comment from a reader during 2013

David Goulet wrote:

imageThe wise man has more to learn from the fool than the fool from the wise man. Now I’m not saying Colin [Berry] is a fool, nor you. Nor am I a wise man. But the heart of this saying is that the wise man can learn even from something that on the surface seems ‘fantasy’. Why, because the wise man has the ability to discern, to put things in perspective and context. He finds nuggets of Truth amongst a load of B.S.

Here’s a thought experiment, if Rogers (or others of these scientists) was still alive and reading this blog, do you think he would discount Colin’s experiments or theories? Or would he take up the challenge, go back to his instruments to see if Colin was right or if he was talking through his rear end? I believe Rogers would have taken up the challenge as he did with the invisible weave theory – which also must have sounded like fantasy.

With an enigma like the Shroud nothing should be thrown off the table. Nothing! That is bad science and it is even worse theology.

Picture is of Raymond Rogers by Barrie Schwortz

Ignorant indoctrinated and improperly educated theists

imageDan Arel has posted The Desire to Believe Anything at the Secularite. Just for fun, I’ve noted a few corrections. I don’t mind the grammar mistakes or even factual errors. I make such mistakes every day. What got my goat was the charge that, as a theist, I will believe anything and that “[i]t may be easy to forgive such ignorance of history stemming from what is often a lifetime of indoctrination and improper education.”

Dan Arel writes:

Atheists often proclaim theists will believe anything and this is this is [sic][repeated] an understandable position when one thinks about all the silly things in the Bible that are often references from [sic][recte to] talking snakes, a virgin birth, a man walking on water and later this same man rising from the dead. Why would we not think theists believe anything?

However, there [sic][recte their] willingness to believe anything seems to stretch further than that. It may be easy to forgive such ignorance of history stemming from what is often a lifetime of indoctrination and improper education. There is [sic][recte are] though, new discoveries in our lifetime that drive this willingness to believe anything to whole new levels.

First we have the shroud of turin [sic][recte Turin]. This academically accepted forgery still hangs  in a church today, on display as the shroud Jesus [sic][recte Jesus’] dead body was covered in [sic][recte with]. Christians simply refuse to accept any scientific evidence this is a fake and use it often as evidence for Jesus existence. [Christians, implying all or most? simply refuse?]

Now even more recently, a burial box discovered in Israel that supposedly has the words “”James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus.” carved into the side. [supposedly?  An inscription, “Ya’akov bar-Yosef akhui diYeshua” (Aramaic) meaning "James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus" is actually carved into a side of the box.]

A group called the Israel Antiques Authority seized the box and tested it, finding it to be a forgery.

The forger was put on trial for the forgery but was found not guilty. Those who believe this is evidence of Jesus’ existence are using this trial as their proof that this is a real burial box of the brother of Jesus Christ. This is regardless of any anthropological evidence that this is an authentic artifact. [I would like to see an example]

“There is no doubt that it’s ancient, and the probability is that it belonged to the brother of Jesus Christ,” said [sic omit] Prof Gabriel Barkay of Bar-Ilan University tells The Guardian.

How can he state this probability when there is zero evidence that Marry, Joseph, Jesus or James even existed to begin with? Hundreds of other probabilities could be listed that hold more water than what this professor simply wishes to be true. His claim is based on nothing but faith and his claim is intellectually dishonest. [zero evidence? possibilities hold water? intellectually dishonest?]

It is often stated by theists that they would abandon their faith if the bones of Jesus were found and it was shown he did not rise from the dead. I must wonder however how quickly these theists would dismiss science as inaccurate if they found some way to verify the identity of these bones.

This suspension of reality is purely dangerous and stifles the critically thinking mind. Faith based thinking must be abandoned and the promotion of ration [sic][recte rational], critical and logical thinking must be endorsed and encouraged.

This was in fun and a response to Arel’s suggestion that as a theist I suffer often from a “lifetime of indoctrination and improper education” Would it surprise Arel to know that I am completely in favor of rational, critical and logical thinking. Faith should have no fears in this regard and benefits by such good discipline.

imageAccording to the staff page at the Secularist, Dan Arel is a freelance writer, speaker and secular activist residing in San Diego, CA. He writes on secular and humanist values on subjects such as secular parenting, church and state separation, education reform and secularism in public policy.

New Video: Discovering Jesus in His Holy Shroud

Mike Morcous writes:

I Just ran into this video, I really like how he explains the crossbeam marks and the left knee cap injury. Makes a lot of sense but I don’t know the reference.

Thoughts on this new video that was just uploaded earlier this month?

Discovering Jesus in His Holy Shroud

Happy New Year from STERA

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This just popped up on STERA’s Facebook page. Thanks, Barrie.

This presents us with a chance to wish the same to Barrie Schwortz and the Board of Directors of STERA.

2014:  Two significant shroud conferences are scheduled and I think we can expect a major new book on the Shroud of Turin. 

BTW: STERA is easy to find on Facebook. Simply type in  facebook.com/stera.inc

Questions, Questions Everywhere and not one on the Shroud of Turin

clip_image001An old friend who thinks I’m absolutely nuts to imagine that the shroud could be real just sent me a link to the July 1, 2005 Special Edition of Science . To celebrate the journal’s 125th anniversary, Science explored 125 big questions that face scientific inquiry over the next quarter-century. The journal welcomed reader suggestions for additional questions. (And the good news is that there is no pay wall for this special edition, which I don’t even remember seeing.)

My friend wanted me to know, in particular, that the list does not include any questions about the Shroud of Turin and its mysterious images. Nor was the shroud suggested by readers. Given that those extra questions are buried in among 1390 comments, I’ll take his word for it.

To chide me a bit more, he points out that the second item on the editors’ list of 125 is What Is the Biological Basis of Consciousness? It is his favorite topic.

“Scientists,” he tells me, “are finally getting into the big C act. And they should for it is no longer the soul (sic or pun) domain of philosophers and theologians. Thankfully, that should leave you ponderers with the time needed to recognize that the shroud is not real.”

I clicked in to the link. This caught my attention: 

Ultimately, scientists would like to understand not just the biological basis of consciousness but also why it exists. What selection pressure led to its development, and how many of our fellow creatures share it? Some researchers suspect that consciousness is not unique to humans, but of course much depends on how the term is defined. Biological markers for consciousness might help settle the matter and shed light on how consciousness develops early in life. Such markers could also inform medical decisions about loved ones who are in an unresponsive state.

Until fairly recently, tackling the subject of consciousness was a dubious career move for any scientist without tenure (and perhaps a Nobel Prize already in the bag). Fortunately, more young researchers are now joining the fray. The unanswered questions should keep them—and the printing presses—busy for many years to come.

My response to my friend:

Why limit the basis of consciousness to biological? What if it isn’t biological at all? What if, as some say, all is deterministic, there is no free will and consciousness is but an illusion? Would that make the shroud an illusion?

If you want to consider dubious career moves, take up the shroud as a scientist.

And why did it take you eight years to send this article to me? But thanks, there is a lot of good fun reading in there.

A few favorites:

It Continues: James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus

imageLiz Klimas writes in The Blaze:

Inscribed on a stone box are the words at the center of more than a decade of religious and scholarly controversy: “James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus.”

These words etched into a burial box spurred a 10-year investigation that would ultimately end in a man cleared of forgery accusations. But discussion as to whether this is the earliest reference to Jesus Christ and the validity of the last three words — “brother of Jesus” — continues.

The Sciatica Effect

imageI’m lying on my back on a table that the physical therapist calls the rack; it resembles a torture device described by Tacitus in the middle of the first century and used after that throughout medieval Europe. Now it was being used on me.

But there was no pain, only relief from pain. My left ankle had been in agony.  It felt like it was broken, only worse. But there was absolutely nothing wrong with my ankle. It was, as the orthopedist explained, a false signal to the brain. The sciatica nerve was being pinched in the lumbar region of my back and I was fooled into thinking the problem was my ankle. With traction, the therapist was trying to relieve compression of the nerve caused by a herniated disk. It was working. Wow, what relief.

And as I lay there I started thinking. When we observe something on the shroud or we discover something about its history, how often to we assume the most obvious explanation without considering other causes: its not the ankle but the lower back.

For instance, we observe that there is no image beneath a bloodstain and we immediately say that is because the blood inhibited image formation. What other reason? (Colin Berry, we miss you).

imageWhen it comes to history, we see a double line on the shroud at the neckline and see a double-line used as an apparent garment neckline on a coin and we think the coin must be modeled on the shroud. Or is there a completely different logical explanation? How about coins that do not depict Jesus, are there double-line necklines on them?

Do we often enough look for alternate explanations, something I might call the sciatica effect?

Or am I on too much pain killer meds? The benefits from traction lasted only about an hour

Pareidolia Again

imageFrom an announcement:

Pareidolia: New Works by Donald Fortescue

OPENS January 16, 6:30-8PM, Artist Reception

EXHIBITS January 16 – February 22, 2014

Oakland Art Murmur Celebration on February 7, 6-9PM

Vessel Gallery, 471 25th Street, Oakland, CA 94612, 510 893 8800

Gallery Hours:  Tuesday through Saturday, 11-6PM

You are cordially invited to join us as we kick off the New Year with the new and exciting solo show “Pareidolia: New Works by Donald Fortescue.”

And then there is this:

”Pareidolia” is the psychological phenomenon whereby a vague or random stimulus (often an image or sound) is perceived as significant or having recognizable form – classical examples being seeing the “man” in the moon (or the “rabbit pounding rice” if you are Japanese), the Shroud of Turin, and the “face” in the Cydonia region of Mars.

The face on Mars (pictured)? Yes, of course. And the man in the moon. But not the Shroud of Turin, not the man on the shroud. It is ludicrous to suggest that

Is the pareidolia on the shroud? I certainly think so. It includes, in my opinion, the images of coins, lettering, flowers and plants, and the appearance of teeth. But the image[s] of the man on the shroud are not and certainly cannot be pareidolia.

Papers from 1991 Shroud Conference

imageA complete scan of the Papers from 1991 Shroud Conference are available at Academia.edu. If you are interested in reading them, I recommend downloading a copy soon. I suspect that these will be removed as they are in clear violation of Academia’s terms and conditions.

For instance, just last week, the same person who uploaded the ‘91 papers, uploaded a copy of an "Article about STURP in National Geographic Magazine – June 1980." That article has already been taken down as it was a clear violation of copyright law and a clear abuse of Academia policies; the site is not a public archive.

Many prominent shroud scholars use Academia.edu, to name just a few: Andrea Nicolotti, Emanuela Marinelli, Paolo Di Lazzaro, Adrie Vd Hoeven, Alessandro Piana, Mark Antonacci, Andy Weiss. For them and for us It is a great facility, so long as it is not abused. I would hate to see shroud scholars get a bad reputation among Academia’s editors and users by one eccentric shroud evangelist who is saturating the site with papers written by others and scans of brochures, catalogues and newspaper clippings. 

Did Jesus Talk Funny and When Was He Born?

imageSince we recently wondered What Did Jesus Look Like Throughout History? we might wonder too what he talked like. Mike Connell (pictured) in The Times Herald asks, So did Jesus talk funny, y’all?  Actually, it is about many things about Jesus and the Shroud of Turin is briefly mentioned:

Paul met the risen Jesus on the road to Damascus, and he knew many of the original apostles, making it impossible to imagine him writing this passage if Jesus had worn his hair long. Indeed, those who doubt the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin often cite Paul’s admonishment and point to the length of the dead man’s hair.

Oh, no. Not that hair thing again. The rest of the article is better. And it is appropriate for Christmas Day.

Whether Jesus was 5-foot-2 with eyes of blue or 6-foot-4 with hair galore, matters not a whit. Even if he spoke with a hillbilly twang and could lift a donkey with one hand, and I’m not saying either is true, these are not among the reasons why he is remembered as vividly as ever after two millennia.

Perhaps he was born in March or September rather than December. So what? Perhaps he was known as “yeah-shew-ah” rather than “gee-zuhs” or “hey-zooce.” Fine.

Christians aren’t celebrating a birth date this week; they’re celebrating a birth. They’re not remembering a man; they’re honoring their Savior.

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas

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The Adoration of the Shepherds by Gerard van Honthorst, December 25, 1622.

A Christmas Posting by John Klotz

clip_image001John Klotz has posted A Blessed Christmas from Boris Pasternak on his blog.

This painting by Domenico di Bartolo (1400–1447) is one of many portrayals of the ‘Our Lady of Humility’ genre often associated with the text,

My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior. For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold from henceforth all generation shall call me blessed.

I thought it fitting. For more information see the description page at Wikimedia commons.

What Hath the Internet Wrought? Don’t Forget the Links

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Did the Apostles Notice an Image on the Cloth?

that was one take-away from the email to contemplate
. . . and more

imageA reader writes:

I believe there is a good argument "from extensive investigation by modern science" (including some pretty bad science) that the SOT is not an artwork by any established method, regardless of the doubtful C14 dating (doubtful on statistical as well as sampling grounds).

There is no way to prove that it is miraculous.

The SOT seems to be one of a kind. There is nothing quite like it, approximating its total complexity in resembling a crucified man.

On logical grounds, it seems certain that if the original apostles had noticed an image on the cloth, they would have tried to secure and preserve the cloth forever. In fact, they very probably would have done the same even whether or not they saw an image. So it is not really surprising that we end up with Jesus’ burial shroud (assuming it existed). [There may be an obscure reference in Paul to it, besides the Gospel accounts.]

So…
it is not improbable that we might have this relic; and that it was hidden away most of the time to protect it from opponents.

I don’t know if anyone has addressed the issue of the large amount of ointment which Nicodemus procured along the tomb, presumably along with the cloth itself, which is somewhat fancy as a burial cloth. What would be the physical effect of this ointment in some imaging or preservative processes? What is the evidence for this in the SOT?

The probabilities are for alternatives:

– this is the shroud of Jesus, and this his image we see, and it was produced by so-far unknown processes
– this is an ancient cloth, cut like a shroud, and someone has artificially produced a complex two sided image to imitate in detail information in the Gospels. This person would have to have been the greatest artistic genius of all time (da Vinci never produced anything remotely this complex in representing a human being; it is easy to draw anatomy and perspective by comparison; the shroud looks like a layered noisy computer-generated image containing superficial 3-D shading on a thin 3D cloth, something impossible 60 years ago). It probably could be copied today by a lot of effort, using a computer-controlled laser together with pattern for blood spatter and body image, an ancient cloth if you could find one, and a blood spatter 3-D printer.

But not 60 years ago.

What about the myrrh ointment? Has someone reported on this?

Building A House on .Argumentum ad Ignorantiam

imageWe do not order our lives by proof
beyond reasonable doubt.

— John Klotz

Earlier this morning, Fr. Duncan (+Dunk) responded to daveb who had made the point in a comment that nobody knows how the image was formed (see I agree. I agree. I agree. Mostly.). He wrote:

In one form or another it is the most used argument for the Holy Shroud’s authenticity: nobody knows how the image was formed therefore it is real.

Well, hmm! I would probably say, since we are talking about authenticity, nobody knows how the image was forged or faked or artistically created. And then yes, I would agree, the argument is used frequently. Philosophically, I don’t like it. We are voicing classic Argumentum ad Ignorantiam (argument from ignorance). Nonetheless, I find myself using the argument with the shroud. It seems true.

In 1963, John Walsh wrote:

The Shroud of Turin is either the most awesome and instructive relic of Christ in existence…or it is one of the most ingenious, most unbelievably clever products of the human mind and hand on record…it is either one or the other, there is no middle ground.

And we weren’t clever enough to figure out how it might have been manmade so many of us found ourselves agreeing it was real. We still do. Can such logic be defended? Stephen Jones is one of the few people to tackle this question and he has done so very effectively. In a posting, Shroud of Turin News, October 2013. Stephen began by  quoting Jonathan Pitts of The Baltimore Sun saying:

To believers, the Shroud of Turin, as it’s known, is the cloth that cloaked the body of Jesus before his planned burial. To skeptics, it’s a hoax conjured up to sell Christianity or draw tourists.

And then responding:

The “skeptics” (who are themselves “believers” in the Shroud’s non-authenticity) have no evidence that the Shroud was “a hoax conjured up to sell Christianity or draw tourists”. They cannot cogently explain: Who conjured it up? How was it conjured up? When was it conjured up? Why can’t they conjured it up (i.e. make a convincing replicate copy of the whole Shroud)? The “skeptics” (so-called) cannot even agree on how the Shroud was “conjured up”. As Ian Wilson concluded after reviewing all the major sceptical theories of how the Shroud was forged:

“Yet ingenious as so many of these ideas are, the plain fact is that they are extremely varied and from not one of them has come sufficient of a groundswell of support to suggest that it truly convincingly might hold the key to how the Shroud was forged – if indeed it was forged.” (Wilson, I., “The Blood and the Shroud,” 1998, p.10-11).

Quoting Pitts again:

It has been studied by everyone from theologians to NASA historians, and still, no one knows. “The shroud is the most analyzed artifact in history, yet it’s still the world’s greatest unsolved mystery,”

Stephen follows through with:

This alone is effectively proof that the Shroud is authentic. It is an important qualification of the usual “argument from ignorance”, that if something should have been discovered by qualified investigators but hasn’t been, that “absence of proof of its occurrence” is “positive proof of its non-occurrence”:

Argumentum ad Ignorantiam (argument from ignorance)… A qualification should be made at this point. In some circumstances it can safely be assumed that if a certain event had occurred, evidence for it would have been discovered by qualified investigators. In such a case it is perfectly reasonable to take the absence of proof of its occurrence as positive proof of its nonoccurrence. Of course, the proof here is not based on ignorance but on our knowledge that if it had occurred it would be known. For example, if a serious security investigation fails to unearth any evidence that Mr. X is a foreign agent, it would be wrong to conclude that their research has left us ignorant. It has rather established that Mr. X is not one. Failure to draw such conclusions is the other side of the bad coin of innuendo, as when one says of a man that there is `no proof’ that he is a scoundrel. In some cases not to draw a conclusion is as much a breach of correct reasoning as it would be to draw a mistaken conclusion.” (Copi, I.M., “Introduction to Logic,” 1986, pp.94-95. Emphasis original).

Stephen then concludes:

Similarly, if the Shroud were a 14th century or earlier fake, the science of the 20th-21st century should have discovered that by now (see below on the 1988 radiocarbon date of the Shroud to 1260-1390 is itself a fake!). So that absence of proof by modern science that the Shroud is a fake, after 35 plus years of intensive scientific study of the Shroud, is positive proof that the Shroud is not a fake!

Okay. That is unless we missed something. How do you evaluate that possibility?

That is all fine and good until argument from ignorance logic turns into a building foundation:

Myra Adams, in a recent article, Jesus `most significant person ever’ in new research study, (and see my posting, How the Shroud Becomes Part of the Conversation) stated:

. . . that is why [=Jesus’ significance] the mysterious Shroud, which could prove Christ’s physical resurrection – the foundation of Christianity, is still an open and active cause célèbre among believers in Jesus’ divinity and members of the scientific community who continue to study the Shroud and remain intrigued by its unique properties.

which resulted in a swift and direct reaction from Stephen:

The Shroud of Turin already has proved, beyond reasonable doubt, Christ’s physical resurrection and therefore that Christianity is true. But that does not mean that that proof cannot continue to be unreasonably denied, by those (including some Christians) who don’t like the implications of there being scientific proof that Christianity is true.

So am I a denier? And, apparently, I don’t like the implications of there being scientific proof that Christianity is true? Has a weak argument from ignorance become the basis for saying that we have “scientific proof that Christianity is true?”

Fear the person who has no doubt. Witness George Armstrong Custer.

— John Klotz

I agree. I agree. I agree. Mostly.

imagedaveb of wellington nz comments:

We do not know what the imaging process was. How was the cloth draped or wrapped around the body? Why is the image a near orthogonal projection with no lateral distortion? Why is there no image of the sides, nor of the crown of the head? At the crown, the image changes abruptly from ventral to dorsal. It is as if the imaging action was fundamentally vertical, rather than an emanation from the body surface. This might argue for a decisive influence from within the earth, such as radon gas. That it is not a perfect image might argue against it being miraculous. The pathologists saying that the body is perfectly proportioned, refers I think to a general observation of a trend, rather an exactitude in particular detail. That some claim to observe that there are paticular distortions, (such as elbows, long fingers etc) suggest random fluctuations in some kind of naturalistic process. Nobody knows. Nobody knows. Nobody knows.

December’s Flippancy Award: What Would Jesus Do?

clip_image001From the Bicycle Story blog:

Little is known about the All-Powerful Bicycle Lobby (APBL). In fact, until the Wall Street Journal’s Dorothy Rabinowitz made a video last Spring lamenting the APBL’s efforts to “begrime” New York City with Citi Bikes, few people (if any) knew that the group existed. Exactly who they are and the extent to which they influence the world’s affairs remains unclear. But, I had the rare opportunity to interview the APBL and help shed light on their dark conspiracy. In it we discuss their history, their slow and steady reshaping of the free world, their end game, and much more.

Your shadowy organization remained a secret until Dorothy Rabinowitz exposed you in her screed against New York’s bike share this year. How did she discover the truth?

We think it might have had something to do with the 6,000 bright blue bicycles we placed on just about every corner of Manhattan and Brooklyn. Wealthy New Yorkers can ignore all kinds of things—from homeless children to the fact that most of the city’s public schools and hospitals are being demolished and replaced with luxury condominiums—but apparently bicycles are a bridge too far. Looking back, we realize we could have taken a more subtle approach in our attempt to secretly turn New Amsterdam back into Amsterdam. But it’s like Oprah always tells us at our weekly poker games, “Go big or go home, shitheads.”

How long has the APBL been asserting its influence on the world?

We don’t have official records, but we recently uncovered research proving that the Shroud of Turin was actually a towel that Jesus used after he completed his first century ride. (When anyone tells us that biking in sandals isn’t safe, we typically tell them that we actually know what Jesus would do.)

Another Christmas Card

imageSpotted this on The Holy Shroud Guild Facebook page.

 

And our prayers are with you.
Merry Christmas

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Barbet vs Zugibe: Part 3 on Stephen Jones’ Blog

imageStephen Jones has posted part 3 of his 3 part series, “Why I prefer Barbet’s hypotheses over Zugibe’s” This final part argues that “Crucifixion victims died primarily of asphyxiation.”

In reading it, I think we can all appreciate the amount of work that went into this.

Writes Stephen:

Zugibe maintains that crucifixion victims, including Jesus, died primarily not of asphyxiation but of traumatic (injury) and hypovolemic (low blood volume) shock:

"During suspension on the cross, Jesus would have experienced a progressive loss of plasma to the pleural spaces (spaces around the lungs) and to the tissue spaces such as the ankles; pooling of blood to the lower parts of the body; and continued sweating caused by the direct rays of the hot midday sun, the heat produced by the increased muscular activity, and the hypotensive (low blood pressure) responses of the body to pain and hypovolemia (low fluid volume). Because there was no attempt to replace the lost fluids or to stop the pain, the compensatory mechanisms would have reached their saturation point. … If I were to certify the cause of Jesus’ death in my official capacity as Medical Examiner, the death certificate would read as follows:

Cause of Death: Cardiac and respiratory arrest, due to hypovolemic and traumatic shock, due to crucifixion."

(Zugibe, F.T., "The Crucifixion of Jesus: A Forensic Inquiry,"2005, pp.134-135. My emphasis).

But as can be seen above, even on Dr. Zugibe’s own "death certificate" the actual (or what Barbet called the "determining" cause of Christ’s death was "Cardiac and respiratory arrest"! So Zugibe seems to be just splitting hairs.

And what have I concluded? Nothing yet. But this will be helpful.

Christmas Card

imageWe spotted this on STERA’s Facebook page.

And to you and yours, Barrie and All,
Merry Christmas

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