How the image came to be on the shroud.

In the following posting, I borrow some wording from my own The Resurrection is Just Too Mysterious to Be Described. I apologize for that but it was the best way, So, please bear with me as I bare my thoughts.

image.pngMany of us who believe in the Resurrection believe it was physical.  Many others do not. A fairly recent survey reported that only 68% of American Catholics strongly agreed with the statement, “Jesus Christ physically rose from the dead.” The percentage of Mainline Protestants was statistically the same at 67%. Evangelical Christians scored higher in this regard at 84%. The survey, Portraits of American Life Study (PALS) was conducted in 2006 by Michael O. Emerson of Rice University and David H. Sikkink of the University of Notre Dame with funding from their respective schools and the Lilly Endowment Fund.

Count me among those who strongly agree with the statement. For many Christians, a spiritual resurrection that is not physical or bodily makes more sense, a belief which to me, is perfectly acceptable. (See The Resurrection is Just Too Mysterious to Be Described). I might change my mind, as I have before. But for now and the foreseeable future, I’m a physical resurrection fan and believer.

But how so? Do I mean that what “happened” behind closed doors was physical?  Do I mean the empty tomb was a physical reality?  Do I mean that the post-resurrection appearances were physical?   Was Jesus somehow transformed physically so that he could pass through locked doors and still be able to eat fish?

What if the Resurrection was simply an instantaneous change of state not just to the body but to the surroundings, as well. Air would NOT rush in to fill the space left by the disappeared body. It would just suddenly be there. Burial cloths would NOT fall to the surface on which the body lay. They would in that instant just be there. Think of something “occurring” in zero time.

We are all familiar, at least in principle, with the way a caterpillar transforms into a butterfly. That is a process. We can make a time-lapsed movie of it and see each and every step. Some will say they see a miracle unfolding. Others will say it is nothing of the kind; it is a perfectly explainable biological process.

If you were to take the first frame and the last frame from the movie of the process, splice them together and pretend that nothing happened in between then you could demonstrate with a very short, two-frame movie a miraculous transformation without a process.

The Resurrection, if we are to believe it was in some way physical, was, by definition, a miracle. If we are to take our knowledge from scripture alone, there was a before and an after, a first frame, so to speak, and a last frame. There was nothing in between that we know about. So, why do we think there was a process? Why do we think, for instance, the body became mechanically transparent or dematerialized such that a cloth might fall through it or that that the body might release some form of energetic byproduct during the Resurrection? Why do we think, as Mark Antonacci, a well-known Shroud researcher, suggests that Jesus might have passed through a traversable Lorentzian wormhole in space-time or as Tulane professor Frank Tipler suggests that the process of resurrection might have been a form of electroweak quantum tunneling?

I’m left to wonder. Is it because of too much imagination or not enough?

image.pngThomas Aquinas in Summa Theologica tried to explain that angels in going from one place to another did not pass through the place in between. Nor did they consume time doing so.

By this sort of local movement an angel may, at will, be present successively in several places and thus may be said to pass through the space between the first and the last place of the series. Or an angel may cease to apply its powers in the first place and begin to apply them in the last, not passing through the space between.

Since there is succession, that is, before-and-after, in the application of an angel’s powers, now here and now there, it must be said that an angel’s local movement occurs in time, and is not instantaneous. This time, however, is not measurable in our minutes or seconds; these units of time are applicable only to bodily movement.

Humor me. I’m just trying to make a point. For angels, at least for Thomas Aquinas’ angels, in how they traveled, there is only a first frame and a last frame, so to speak.  Thomas Aquinas was much into angels and was brilliant at logical speculation. This notion of his provides a useful metaphor for pondering any and all supernatural “action.” There is in his imaginings a change of state and no measure of time. There is nothing like that in classical physics and perhaps nothing like that in quantum mechanics, as well.

And to be clear, we are talking about miracles in a classic sense of the word.  We are not talking about the metamorphosis of a caterpillar into a butterfly. We are talking, here, about:

  • “The highest degree in miracles comprises those works wherein something is done by God, that nature can never do.” — The Summa Contra Gentiles by St. Thomas Aquinas
  • “A miracle is a transgression of a law of nature by a particular volition of the Deity, or by the interposition of some invisible agent.” —  “An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding” by David Hume

Might miracles be like Thomas Aquinas’ angels, who avoid the in-between and use no time?” Not concerning ourselves, here, with questions about Biblical literalism, when Jesus healed the blind man was there a moment in time when the man’s eyesight was partially restored? When Jesus turned water into wine was there a moment in time, no matter how brief, when the wine was still mostly water and when, perhaps picoseconds later, the water was mostly wine? Or was it that the man’s eyesight was suddenly restored? Was it that the water was suddenly wine?

There was, when I was growing up, a book that could be found gathering dust here and there about our house. It was sometimes in its place on the bookshelf but more often it was on the corner of a desk, a coffee table in the living room or on top of the television set where it was used to prop up the rabbit ears antenna at just the right angle for getting the best television reception from a broadcasting tower five miles away. The theory was that my grandmother, on purpose, would leave the book around the house in hopes that someone would read it. The book was Who Moved the Stone? by Frank Morrison (real name Albert Henry Ross; Faber and Faber, 1930). Promoted by such luminaries as T. S. Elliot and  G. K. Chesterton, the book was a big success when it was first published in 1930. It is now a classic.

Now, in “thumbing” through the Kindle version I came across this thought:

In each case the women arrive to find the stone already rolled away, yet with no hint from the writers as to how this came about. It is only when we turn to St. Matthew’s Gospel that we read of a great angel descending and removing the stone.

Now the peculiar and significant thing is this. We can search the apocryphal writings through and through, and we shall nowhere find even the remotest suggestion that the Lord Himself broke the barriers of His own prison. We are told that the stone ‘rolled away of itself’, or that supernatural beings descended and moved it. But nowhere is the obvious miracle recorded that Jesus Himself threw down the physical defences of the grave.

I wondered, could it be that the angel (or a metaphorical angel), removed the stone as Thomas Aquinas might have imagined his angels doing?  Could it be that in an imperceptible, immeasurable instant, absent any sound or disturbance of any kind, the stone was found to be in a new position? It didn’t roll. It didn’t slide. The stone was moved but never was there any motion.

Might the Resurrection “moment” in the tomb have been that way: a miracle with a before and after and no in-between process? In other words, might the Resurrection have been a miracle in which Jesus neither removed his shroud nor passed through it, yet, nonetheless, it had been shed — a miracle in which he went from point A to point B without passing through the in-between — a miracle in which the stone was not rolled away but found to be in a new place  — a miracle in which an image did appear on the cloth? 

And in that sense, did Jesus suddenly appear by the Magdalen’s side? And did He just appear to the disciples on the road to Emmaus? Had they looked back down the road before the encounter, would they have seen him approaching from afar or not?  Had Jesus just suddenly appeared in the Cenacle, not passing through doors or walls at all?  Did Jesus travel to a place on the Road to Damascus for his encounter with Saul of Tarsus? Or was the Christ just there?

And was the image just there at the instant of the Resurrection?

John Jackson et al. wants us to play the game of best fit as we consider his Resurrection of the Falling Cloth scenario. It’s a best fit for many image characteristics we are told.  And by his selection, characterization and measurement criteria he is right. Fair enough. But, arguably — and by making some allowance for many years of folding, spindling, and well-intentioned mutilation — the image created as part-and-parcel of a body transformation, stone relocation, and image formation miracle is, by definition, a perfect fit.

There is still the question of why.  Why is there an image at all?  And for what constituency was that image placed on the shroud?

Dare we wonder about carbon 14 ratios? Could we even imagine altering the C14  content as part-and-parcel of the miracle?  That’s a “why” too strange, to even contemplate.

So I’m reluctant to embrace my own imagination except that compared to EVERY OTHER image forming proposal from radiation to corona discharge to  Maillard reaction to photosensitive contact printing to dust painting to rubbing and even acid etching, I prefer a two-frame, now-you-don’t-see -it-now-you-do, part and parcel with the Resurrection model. And the Resurrection is not the cause of the image.

The O.K. Corral Shootout

OK-Corral_sm

O.K. commented in my posting, The Myth of the VP8 and 3D Uniqueness?

A lot of confusion is there. It is perhaps because the common way of lecturing about the Shroud, is a historical approach, in 1898 Pia discovered negativity, in 1970s Jackson & Jumper discovered 3D with VP-8 etc.

This is actually misleading, creates a hype, and in my opinion asks the wrong questions. How to make an image that is a photographic negative, 3 D rendering, without contours, isotropic, etc. ? There is always a way to do it regarding the individual properties -but resulting images have actually nothing in common with the Shroud (besides this single selected characteristic).

In my opinion, the issue should be lectured in more modern, compact way? The problem is: what constitutes the image on the Shroud, what makes it so specific? What are its basic components? And ONLY THEN ask a question: what are derived properties (like negativity or 3D) of such an image.

O.K. may be right. It is certainly a form of discipline that might eliminate the confusion. But the problem is bigger than that.  It’s the “Wild West” nature of shroud research since STURP, a land of scientific lawlessness and tall tales where the closest things to order were the “O.K. Corral” shootouts called conferences.  What did this atmosphere produce?

It produced the “I think I see” world of imagined images of ancient coins along with all manner of bric-a-brac, of plants from ancient Israel, of teeth and ponytails and of written messages in Greek, Latin or Hebrew — all these being wishful misperceptions or pareidolia. There were the dubious pollen charts and the radiocarbon dating fiasco. There were the tall tales: NASA analyzed the shroud, Ray Rogers was a general in the Air Force, America’s greatest scientists studied the shroud, and so-and-so was a Nobel prize-winning physicist. And it produced a lot of good science, too. Often that was overshadowed by the sensational.

There were short declarative decrees. They’re still sitting out there at shroud.com:

This spatial data encoded into the image actually eliminates photography and painting as the possible mechanism for its creation and allows us to conclude that the image was formed while the cloth was draped over an actual human body.

We can examine this in three parts:

spatial data encoded into the image:   Is calling the data spatial not begging the question? Would it not be better to say relative greyscale values of the image that when plotted as relative distances from a planar surface suggest three-dimensionality, suggest spatiality. 

eliminates photography and painting as the possible mechanism for its creation:  That is simply not true, as has been shown on on this blog. One might argue about how difficult or unlikely it would be. But a blanket denial that it is possible is misleading, at best.

allows us to conclude that the image was formed while the cloth was draped over an actual human body: Conclude? How so? Not so if the cloth was draped over a statue or if the image was formed by some unusual photographic or artistic method that produces the right kind of relative greyscale values.

Being precise makes it more difficult to read. But compact imprecision leads to misunderstanding and to the dogmatism.

backscratcherAnd then there is the Wild West’s Colorado Springs, once a place to soak in curative waters, and then a place to pan for gold, and now the home of the Turin Shroud Center of Colorado. Here is a brief statement from a document, The Shroud of Turin – A Critical Summary of Observations, Data and Hypotheses on the TSC website. I call this the Rube Goldberg miracle; you know, where a miracle happens, that causes a body to become mechanically transparent allowing a cloth to fall through it and get a controlled dose of radiation.

Consistent: [= in context The Fall-through hypothesis is consistent with the 3 Dimension attribute of the image.] The initial draping configuration of the Shroud over a body establishes the initial cloth-body distances. If, then, the Shroud overlying the body falls into the body region, different points on the cloth will intersect the body surface at different times depending upon how far that point was originally away from the body. Thus, each cloth point will receive a radiation dose in proportion to the time that the point is inside the emitting body region. Since that time is inversely proportional to the initial cloth-body distance, it follows that the radiation dose, and hence image intensity, is likewise inversely proportional to the initial cloth-body distance. Correlation of image intensity with cloth-body distance is consistent with the Shroud VP-8 3-dimensional effect.

I was just wondering:  what is the body like at this stage of the miracle?  Is it a liquid that holds it’s once-solid shape or a gas or something specifically miraculous? Does the part of the cloth under the body fall upwards?  What type of radiation works best for resurrection miracles?  What happens after the cloth has finished its fall?  Is a mechanically transparent body able to pass through locked doors yet walk on the road to Emmaus and eat fish?

Those are the questions that come to mind. Silly, perhaps, but they do come to mind. Let me put it this way: I cannot begin to imagine that I will ever believe this.  I believe in the Resurrection and I may believe the shroud is real but I cannot believe one word of Fall-Through hypothesis.

If you haven’t read The Resurrection is Just Too Mysterious to Be Described & A Response to Dr. Colin Berry, you can’t understand where I’m coming from.

The Myth of the VP8 and 3D Uniqueness?

clip_image001.pngAntero de Frias Moreira of the Centro Português de Sindonologia wrote in a comment:

I ask whomever to show me an example of any image (OBVIOUSLY LEAVING ASIDE THE DEATH MASK PHOTOGRAPHS OBTAINED WITH MODERN PHOTOGRAPHY TECHNIQUES which in my opinion do not show similarities with the image on linen of the Shroud…) from medieval age or even 19 th century that has such encoded information to produce the same 3D results as the Shroud image / Shroud photographs.

here iis the challenge

And Lee Jone replied (for everyone’s convenience I have inserted the images where Lee provided links):

Here you go Antero mate, these image’s should match your criteria. These show similarities to the image on the Turin shroud. They have the same 3D “response” that the shroud does due to varying tone intensities of the monochromatic sepia color. Here is the original image with no 3D rendering

LeeJones1>> https://ibb.co/BnF2yp4

Here is a 3D rendering of the positive image

LeeJones2>> https://ibb.co/985WHDK

And here is the negative (tone inversion) 3D response

LeeJones3>> https://ibb.co/N7VcNqf

So as you can see, there a many way’s to create image’s that give a 3D response with such thing’s as a VP8 analyser, or any software which emulate’s a VP8, such as ImageJ.

John Adams once said:

Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.

But what do you do when the facts – 3D uniqueness – have for so long been wrong?

I stand corrected!

Bill Meachem, by way of a comment, wrote:

Dan, My delight at seeing your Shroud blog and forum revived was much diminished by your quoting me TOTALLY OUT OF CONTEXT. I did not “put it that way.” This is the full context:

“The Shroud of Turin Research Project (STURP) formed around a nucleus of scientists studying the Shroud by means of computer enhancement and image analysis. Jackson et al. (1977) scanned the image with a microdensitometer to record lightness variations in the image intensity and found a correlation with probable cloth-to-body distance, assuming that the Shroud was draped loosely over the corpse. They concluded that the image contains three-dimensional information, and confirmation was obtained by the use of a VP-8 Image Analyzer to convert shades of image intensity into vertical relief. Unlike ordinary photographs or paintings, the Shroud image converted into an undistorted three-dimensional figure, a phenomenon which suggested that the image-forming process acted uniformly through space over the body, front and back, and did not depend on contact of cloth with body at every point.”

Clearly I am summarizing what was reported by STURP, and the sentence you quoted is obviously a continuation of “They concluded …” Now one might say I should have been a bit more sceptical, but having never seen or studied what a VP-8 Image Analyzer can do, I went for a simple reporting style.

Yes, I’ve never seen a black swan either, but you make it appear that I was reporting on MY OWN observation of how the Shroud image “converted…”

The issue really can be better refined this way: Is there any medieval PAINTING or RUBBING (forget about modern photos of death masks, etc) that would yield anything approaching a natural body 3D image when subjected to VP-8 or software analysis?

On another topic, surely you don’t mean this sentence to stand alone:

“There is no basis whatsoever for concluding that the cloth covered a body.”

But only in the sense that the VP-8 results did not provide any evidence to support the conclusion. There is of course a wealth of other evidence that makes it an almost inescapable conclusion.

But having said all that, I am still pleased to see you back on the Shroud scene.

Bill

I stand corrected.

On the second point (starting with “On another topic), Colin Berry has also written to me in an email to say something similar, “3D response alone provides no basis for concluding that the cloth covered a body.”

I was careless.  Nonetheless, I do not feel like Jim Firth does when he writes:

The naive 3D mystique born of amateurish image analysis has infected shroud research for more than 40 years. Sadly, it still does because it feeds attempts to prove the resurrection with wildly imaginative narratives of the resurrection.

I don’t think it really “infected” shroud research.  Ray Rogers pursued his miracle-free gaseous Maillard reaction hypothesis. Guilio Fanti worked on his corona discharge ideas. Nichola Allen built a working room-sized camera.  Frank Tipler wrote a book in which he suggested that the shroud’s image was a code from God on how to save the universe from eventual demise while developing the software making eternal life possible.   And for the most part, we learned to quit believing that there were coins over the eyes, flower images all over the cloth, and Hebrew and Roman lettering on the cloth.

Nor was the 3D analysis naive.  The analysis was based on the best technology at the time. It is time, however, to move forward and analyze the image with newer and better methods.  

An Offer from Lee Jones (Comment Promoted)

If anybody wants any of the high resolution images of the shroud for their research, drop me an e-mail at djleejay85@google,mail.com I have the enrie image (1.4 gigabytes) the STURP images, the HAL9000 (Haltadefinizione) images from 2008, and the Durante images from 1997,2000,2002 and 2010, They range in size from 500 megabytes up to around 27 gigabytes. I know how much of a ball ache it can be trying to find decent resolution images. Marios shroud scope is a good resource but he converted the TIFF files to JPG and then chopped them up so nobody can download them lol. I have the file he uses which is the 2002 image, personally i think the 2000 image is sharper and reveals more detail. The best out of the lot of them is the Durante 2010 image, it is alot more detailed than the Haltadefinizione images (39 billion pixels if i remember correctly, whereas the haltadefinizione image was 12 billion pixels)

No basis for concluding that the cloth covered a body

Once upon a time, it was said of all swans that they were white. And this was so because no one, at least no one during the Middle Ages in Europe or the Middle East, had ever seen swans of another color. It was as good as a fact. That was until 1697 when Dutch explorers discovered black swans in Australia.  And thus, a logical fallacy got a name. Wiktionary defines the Black Swan Fallacy thus:

The black swan fallacy holds that if all you have ever observed in your field research are white swans, you might be tempted to conclude ‘All swans are white’. However, a black swan was discovered in Australia. Therefore, all it takes is one black swan to falsify the general statement about the universality of white swans.

And thus was made what was perhaps the greatest error in Shroud science. For once upon a time, and still today, it is said, “​When input to a VP-8, a normal photograph does not result in a properly formed dimensional image but in a rather distorted jumble of light and dark ‘shapes’.” That is what it says on a page by Barrie Schwortz at shroud.com (updated in 2014). This thinking is repeated in many ways. You will find it in Jackson et al.’s Critical Summary, a defense of something called the “Fall Through hypothesis. You will find it in countless presentations, websites and books.

Bill Meacham put it this way:

Unlike ordinary photographs or paintings, the Shroud image converted into an undistorted three-dimensional figure, a phenomenon which suggested that the image-forming process acted uniformly through space over the body, front and back, and did not depend on contact of cloth with body at every point.

Unfortunately, that just doesn’t hold up.

image_thumb.pngThe black swan moment happened at an international Shroud of Turin conference in St. Louis in 2014, Joseph Accetta, in a presentation, explained how a normal photograph could contain all the same type of three-dimensional information found on the Shroud.  John Dee German, an optical physicist with STURP has said much the same thing.

To the left is a photograph of a death mask from Joseph Accetta’s presentation. Below, courtesy of Colin Berry who did the work, is the proof that Accetta was right.

 

image.png

 

So this statement at shroud.com, once thought to be true, is simply not true:

​This spatial data encoded into the image actually eliminates photography and painting as the possible mechanism for its creation and allows us to conclude that the image was formed while the cloth was draped over an actual human body.

 

There is no basis whatsoever for concluding that the cloth covered a body.

Photography, painting and other methods are just as likely now as they were before the VP-8 was ever used. 

 

Nassim Nicholas Taleb, in his book, The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable,  described by The Sunday Times as one of the twelve most influential books since World War II, explains how we fall into Black Swan traps:

  1. The event is a surprise to the observer.
  2. The event has a major effect.
  3. It is rationalized by hindsight.

In this context, re-read the page by Barrie Schwortz at shroud.com

Every option is back on the table. Yes, even John Jackson’s Fall Through hypothesis if one can recognize that it is a mere assumption and not established or valid science that the cloth covered Jesus’ body. It is for other reasons that I think the Fall Through hypothesis is unlikely.  Read The Resurrection is Just Too Mysterious to Be Described

 

Not superficial? The implications could be staggering.

Colin Berrys Microscope Picture

 

Left: the arrow points to a THREAD that is displaying a cut edge, i.e. much needed transverse section. Why the speckled appearance? Right: enlargement, showing that it’s the SCW cores of some but not all individual FIBRES that contain the dense pigment, probably Maillard-derived melanoidin, the latter possibly having penetrated via this investigator’s proposed reticular network of capillary channels existing between the MICROFIBRILS.


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If Colin Berry is right, the implications could be staggering. It’s enough, I thought, to warrant waking up this blog for at least one posting. Your comments are, as always, welcome.


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I retired from blogging just over three years ago.  Until today, I stayed away from this blog and every other Shroud of Turin related website and newsletter.

A few days ago, I decided to jump back in, at least for one posting. That was after getting an email from Dr. Colin Berry. He wanted me to know that he now suspected that the Shroud’s image is not superficial.

Not superficial? But Isn’t it a fact that it is? Isn’t it something we all believe is true?
On his blog, he told of …
…   a realization that the supposed ultra-superficiality of the TS body image – pointing we’re told to a supernatural origin –  had scarcely a single solid fact to back it up. …
No, not on the surface PCW (primary cell wall) but hidden away, out of sight, deep within the microfibril-packed core of the SCW (secondary cell wall).  Oh dear: has sindonology got it entirely wrong with its ‘out-of-this-world ultra superficial’ body image?

Colin’s email to me invited me to look at his blog.  Colin tried to boil the ocean in his last posting, something that I used to do myself, sometimes. I would do so again, this time in a reply to him. In addition to my reaction to Colin’s non-superficiality grenade, I had three years of pent up thinking to unload. When I realized my reply was too long to be a reasonable blog posting or email, I turned it into a PDF file called,The Resurrection is Just Too Mysterious to Be Described & A Response to Dr. Colin Berry. 

Long walks with the dog, away from the blog, gave me the chance to think a lot about the Shroud.  Colin and I are closer than I thought we were. It is mostly in the conclusions about the authenticity of the cloth that I disagree with him. I think we are very much in agreement about not finding any basis for an image being created as the result of the Resurrection.

What Colin is now saying about the lack of superficiality in the image reminds me of the 3D problem. It was often said that it is impossible to plot 3D information from paintings and ordinary photographs. Bill Meacham put it this way:

Unlike ordinary photographs or paintings, the Shroud image converted into an undistorted three-dimensional figure, a phenomenon which suggested that the image-forming process acted uniformly through space over the body, front and back, and did not depend on contact of cloth with body at every point.

 

Unfortunately, that wasn’t true.  At an international Shroud of Turin conference in St. Louis in 2014, Joseph Accetta proposed that a photograph of a certain death mask might contain all the information needed in exactly the same way as the image on the Turin Shroud.  He was right; Colin did so and confirmed it.  That challenged the belief, stemming out of an erroneous assumption that the grayscale values on the Shroud represented cloth-to-body distance or body shape.  It was a classic case of an assumption being treated like a fact. See:  It is really, really time to rethink what we think about 3D.

Colin is a scientist. If he is wrong about the non-superficiality of the Shroud image he certainly wants to know it. And he wants to know why.  And if he’s right he wants you to know. And I want you to know that this might challenge a generation of postulating about how the image was formed.

Computer Hacking Theory for Carbon Dating Continues

“If so, then this itself was a form of scientific fraud,
or at least scientific dishonesty.”  Surely, you’re joking, Mr. Jones.

“The AMS system is clearly designed so that if there was a problem with the dating process at a laboratory, then its target (Shroud) and control sample dates would wrongly agree together, and disagree together with the correct Shroud and control samples dates of the other two laboratories.”  Again, surely …

 


 

imageOkay, I know the subject is over-reported. But I like the quotation by Richard Feynman. It’s a quotation I have always liked, never thought much about, and now am seeing again in the context of the shroud. It is from his famous book, Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman!.

The first principle is that you must not fool yourself-and you are the easiest person to fool. So you have to be very careful about that. After you’ve not fooled yourself, it’s easy not to fool other scientists.

It did strike me as odd that Stephen Jones would use this quotation in his never-ending quest to convince skeptics of the shroud’s authenticity and non-skeptics alike that the results of the 1987 carbon dating of the shroud were the product of a computer program planted in all three AMS labs by a computer hacker, possibly on behalf of the Soviet Union’s KGB.

Is it that Stephen’s theory is preposterous or is it that it seems preposterous and we’re all of us fools? It’s fair, I guess, to ask, given what Feynman said. But then, too, we might think a little introspection by Stephen may be in order.

This part of the theory may be new to you. Stephen writes in his blog, The 1260-1390 radiocarbon date of the Turin Shroud was the result of a computer hacking #4. It makes for interesting reading:

The uncalibrated dates of sample 1 (the Shroud) in Table 2 of the 1989 Nature paper are widely different. As can be seen in Table 2 of the 1989 Nature paper (see above), sample 1 (the Shroud)’s average uncalibrated radiocarbon date by each laboratory was widely different, unlike the non-Shroud samples (2, 3 and 4). Prof. Gove criticised the 1989 Nature paper for having been, “opaquely written” and “difficult to comprehend … even by experts in the field“:

“On 27th February the 16 February 1989 issue of the British journal Nature (volume 337) finally reached the library in my lab. On pages 611-615 appeared the article titled ‘Radiocarbon dating of the Shroud of Turin’ by P E Damon et al. … The article was rather opaquely written-difficult to comprehend in complete detail even by experts in the field …”[20]

Presumably this was deliberate so as to conceal the inexplicable fact that the Shroud sample dates between the three laboratories were widely different. If so, then this itself was a form of scientific fraud, or at least scientific dishonesty.

So says Stephen. Now, dear reader, figure this out:

As stated above the process was fully “under computer control” so human error cannot have intervened in the process, to cause the Shroud sample dates at each laboratory to disagree widely (as they did-see next), while the control samples dates had “exceptionally good agreement. The AMS system is clearly designed so that if there was a problem with the dating process at a laboratory, then its target (Shroud) and control sample dates would wrongly agree together, and disagree together with the correct Shroud and control samples dates of the other two laboratories. Otherwise AMS radiocarbon dating in general would be unreliable and this “mediaeval … AD 1260-1390” AMS radiocarbon date of the Shroud would have to be disregarded anyway (as it should have been)!

So again it is inexplicable if the Shroud sample dates were real (and not computer-generated by a hacker’s (allegedly Timothy W. Linick‘s) program in this fully computerised process), for “the agreement among the three laboratories for [control] samples 2, 3 and 4” to be “exceptionally good,” yet the “spread of the measurements for sample 1[the Shroud]” to be somewhat greater than would be expected (my emphasis).

He does provide a nice graph to help us see this*:

Anyway, I like Feynman’s quote.  I may find a way to feature it on every page of my own blog. It is useful. You can invoke it, probably, for every argument you have about the shroud. It makes for great ad hominem slinging, too. Just make sure you are not the person who has fooled himself.

*The image of the graph is inline from Stephen’s site so he can’t complain that I’m copying his material.

Russ Breault will also be in St. Louis, November 15

After speaking on Friday and Saturday in Chester, Illinois, Russ Breault travels to St. Louis to speak at Incarnate Word Parish on November 15, 2015. The church’s website informs us:

Encounter the Shroud of Turin

imageIncarnate Word is pleased to sponsor international Shroud of Turin expert, Russ Breault on November 15, 2015 in our Kent Center at 7:30PM. Admission is free!

Russ Breault is bringing his FAST PACED, DRAMATIC, VISUAL, UNFORGETTABLE, BIG SCREEN EXPERIENCE titled "SHROUD ENCOUNTER" to Incarnate Word!  Russ uses over 200 images covering all aspects of the history, science, art and theories of how the image on the Shroud may have been formed.  He will have two small displays, as well as a full size 14 ft by 3.5 ft replica of the Shroud available for up-close viewing.

The Shroud of Turin (reportedly the burial cloth of Jesus Christ, bearing his image) is the most analyzed artifact in the world. At the direction of Pope Francis it will once again be on public display next year in Turin, Italy. Russ’ presentation has been called  "Tour de force", "Spellbinding", "Mesmerizing", "Riveting": and more.  He has appeared in numerous documentaries seen on History Channel, Discovery and CBS.  He was interviewed last year on Good Morning America for an update on the latest research concerning the Shroud. Russ has also lectured at some the country’s most prestigious universities including Duke, Penn State, Johns Hopkins, West Point, Cal State, Auburn, GA Tech, U Mass and many more.

Please plan to attend and explore the mystery of the Shroud. See you there!

Checking in on Stephen Jones’ Blog

imageStephen has been discussing the side strip: Sidestrip #5: The evidence is overwhelming that the Turin Shroud is authentic!

< CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE >

Problem for the forgery theory. That the Shroud has almost invisible stitching in its seam that is identical to stitching found elsewhere only at the Jewish fortress of Masada, which was last occupied in AD 73, is yet another (see #1, #3 and #4) problem for the forgery theory. Since a medieval forger would be most unlikely (to put it mildly) to even know about almost invisible first century Jewish stitching; and even if he did know about it, he would be even more unlikely to go to the trouble of adding it to his forgery (what use would almost invisible stitching be to a forger?); and even if he wanted to use it, he would be most unlikely to have the high degree of skill needed to do such stitching. So again the forgery theory would need to resort to the pre-1988 fall-back position of the late leading anti-authenticist Walter McCrone (1916-2002), that "a first century cloth could have been found and used by a 14th century artist to paint the image":

"A carbon-dating test would be final if it led to a date significantly later than the early first century. A first century date, on the other hand, would remove almost all obstacles to universal acceptance of the `Shroud’ as authentic. Only the careful objective scientist might still point out that a first century cloth could have been found and used by a 14th century artist to paint the image"[18].

But, leaving aside whether that would be "objective," for anti- authenticists to claim that a medieval forger forged the Shroud’s image on a 1st century cloth would, as we saw in parts #3 and #4, mean admitting that the 1988 radiocarbon dating of the Shroud claim was wrong…

Does Stephen mean this is overwhelming – the emphasis on the word in the title of his posting is his – or that this argument, in conjunction with a gazillion other (or a few other) arguments, is overwhelming. I think he means the latter. I’m just not a big fan of piling up weak arguments one on top of the other. But then, again, that’s just me. And maybe it’s not weak.

Your thoughts?

Cherry Jam, the Metaphor

That Dan Porter should allow a serial commentator on his site, one with no blogsite of his own, and unable for one reason or another  to provide links to a published model – any model – to make baseless charges time and again against a  senior investigator like myself, albeit long retired,   is quite simply unacceptable, totally unacceptable.

— Colin Berry


Can anyone explain this from Colin’s blogsite?  I think it was posted today but it is hard to figure that out:

… here’s a graphic I made yesterday for which there’s an immediate use on shroudstory (by way of emphasizing the difference between the scientific method, and the pseudo-scientific method that attempts to ape it.

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Beware pseudo-science. It’s worse, much worse, than cherry-picking to support a case. It’s more akin to cherry jam manufacture!

And one cherry jam manufacturer has the nerve to accuse this retired scientist (with three published models under his belt, one highly cited and attracting patent applications) of plagiarizing his idea! Why? Because he used words like “alkali”, “fumigation”, “mordant”, “compression”, “paste” etc. As I say, I shall give a brief summary as to how I came to deploy those words in the course of my post Machy-mould modelling, and did so as a series of practical experiments, all reported in real time here or on my sciencebuzz site. That Dan Porter should allow a serial commentator on his site, one with no blogsite of his own, and unable for one reason or another  to provide links to a published model – any model – to make baseless charges time and again against a  senior investigator like myself, albeit long retired,   is quite simply unacceptable, totally unacceptable.

Posting For a Slow News Day

Psychosis set in when the radiocarbon dating results for the Shroud of Turin were
announced, or when the due date of the Mayan apocalypse came and went.

imageIt is about apophenia and pareidolia: the short essay, Beware of the Man in the Ashtray by Neels Blom appearing in Business Day (BDlive of South Africa). Well, no, not really. It is about politics. Well, no, not really. Well maybe if you lived in South Africa you might think so.

Oh, did I mention the Shroud of Turin is mentioned. But it is not about that.  Fly fishing? Pluto?

It is entertaining. And if is very well written. And it is not an essay. It’s and Op Ed. That’s enough.

By-the-way, we’ve discussed apophenia and pareidolia many times in the blog (those are links to pages in this blog). We discussed fishing once.  Well, no, not really.

Clarification

imageArt Lind writes to St. Louis Conference attendees (published here with permission):

Yesterday I viewed Russ Breault’s video1 of my presentation, Hypothesis that Explains the Shroud’s Unique Blood Marks and Several Critical Events in the Gospels, at the St. Louis Shroud Conference 20142. At 6 minutes into my presentation I noticed that I made a statement concerning Dr. Lavoie’s studies of blood transfer from skin to linen that I wish I had better clarified, so I am doing it now.  The statement I made in my presentation made it seem that I did not believe Dr. Lavoie’s results as presented in his book, Unlocking the Secrets of The Shroud.  That was not my intent, as I do believe his results are as he reported.

In my presentation I said that the results of my experiments indicated that blood coagulated and dried in less than 15 minutes, which prevented me from transferring blood on skin to linen more than 15 minutes after the blood was put on the skin.  I also said that Dr. Lavoie reported that he was able to make transfers as long as 2 hours after the blood was put on the skin. It was not 2 hours. Actually, he reported on page 94 of his book, “At room temperature, transfers could take place up to one and a half hours after the blood was taken from a volunteer.”  More importantly, I failed to mention in my oral presentation that I used a blood collection method different from that used by Dr. Lavoie.  As a medical doctor, he used a blood collection method that he believed better duplicated the conditions surrounding Christ’s crucifixion.  Thus, our different blood collection methods could explain why we obtained different results.  I must acknowledge that during my research Dr. Lavoie and I talked many times and he was of great help to me because of his knowledge of blood and its clotting factors.

In my written paper3 I more completely described Lavoie’s methods and results, as summarized above.  Unfortunately, many who attended my talk and/or only viewed Russ Breault’s video1 of my oral presentation may not have read my written paper.  Thus, I am sending this email to all attendees of the conference to correct misunderstandings that may have resulted from my verbal presentation.

1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X1VdmyHXOY0

2. http://www.stlouisshroudconference.com

3. http://www.shroud.com.pdfs/stllindpaper.pdf

Thanks for letting us know.

More Than 2 Million People Saw the Shroud in 2015

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The above note reads, according to Google:

I thank the Volunteers of the Shroud and also those who have helped me in my visit to Turin. I cordially bless you and your families. And please do not forget to pray for me. May the Lord bless you and keep you Madonna.

Affectionately,

Francesco
22-6-2015

After reading the above note to the assembled press in a closing press conference, Msgr. Cesare Nosiglia, the Archbishop of Turin, gave a brief speech. The highlights of the speech include the facts that…

  • More than 2 million people saw the shroud
  • Nearly 3 million people came to Turin including those who came to see Pope Francis
  • More than 1 million euro was collected during the Exposition and donated to the Holy Father. It will be used for charitable works in Turin.

The speech with Google translation from the Official Holy Shroud website (sindone.org) reads:


imageSummary of the Custodian, Msgr. Nosiglia

It was an exposition of the most participated and experienced by pilgrims for human and spiritual intensity. The organization and the welcome was perfect also for the kindness and friendliness of the volunteers. The path toward the Shroud proved useful with panels of social saints and with the movie of the prefetch, both judged by all well made ​​and necessary. All pilgrims then had the opportunity to pause in silence and prayer before the Shroud for a sufficient time.

Very large and varied profile of the pilgrims: families with children, young people, the homeless and the poor, Orthodox and Evangelicals, Muslims and representatives of other religions, people from European countries, America, Africa, Middle East and Asia. Of particular note is the thousands of visitors Filipinos.

They stopped in front of the Telo numerous cardinals, bishops, priests, deacons, men and women religious, ecclesial associations and movements. Thick delegations of pontifical councils of the Holy See and the offices of the CEI.

They are also parades in front of the Shroud political authorities, economic and financial, entertainment, sports, film and theater.

And how many ‘such as’ pilgrims

The total number of pilgrims visiting the Holy Shroud in the monstrance Costituto 2015 is the sum of the people who have booked and have made ​​the journey, those who participated in the celebrations in the Cathedral, the groups walked right through the door without central reservation and authorities and personality accompanied by the Ceremonial. With this calculation, the number more than two million people.

To these must be added those in the two-day visit of the Pope have followed him all the way from Caselle in Turin, in all the squares and streets where past and has stopped . We can say, then, that Turin has received 3 million people.

We have received a number of messages and endless claims of what the experience of the Shroud was intense and full of grace and joy for the pilgrims.

The Visit of Pope Francis

Pope and all his followers were surprised by the enthusiastic welcome of the people, a sign of great affection for the Pope.

The Pope’s speeches and his actions have hit the mark and will remain in the hearts of all as an invitation to hope and confidence in the future.

The actions of the three representatives of the world of work were concrete, realistic and not of fact but also loads hope in God and in themselves. A good injection of optimism even in the middle of the well-known difficulties.

At the Shroud, the Pope was in meditative silence as each pilgrim. No word not to break the climate of silence and contemplation that requires the Shroud. But he made ​​a gesture full of tenderness and pregnant meaning. He touched the sacred Linen, as he stroked, as if he had touched the broken body of the Lord to comfort him. It’s nice that the One from whom we receive the consolation of God becomes the object of tenderness and consolation. I saw in this gesture of Veronica wipes the face of Jesus or that of women who go to anoint the body of the deceased. But I also saw the gesture of the woman with a hemorrhage, of which the Gospel speaks, he wants to touch the cloak of Jesus for healing. Jesus said, “your faith has saved you.”

The “gift” of Pope Francis for the poor of Turin

The Pope gave me a blessing and gratitude to the volunteers of the Shroud and those who have done their utmost for the success of the Exhibition. The handwritten text says: “I thank the Volunteers of the Shroud and also those who have helped me in my visit to Turin. I cordially bless you and your families. And please do not forget to pray for me. May the Lord bless you and the Madonna keep you. Affectionately. Francesco. 21.06.2015 “

The Pope has asked me to take advantage of the gift fruit of donations from pilgrims and Exposition of the faithful of the diocese of Turin, for a work of charity in favor of the latest in Turin. The figure exceeds one million Euros. We will define these days with Caritas, Migrantes Office and Ministry of Health which will make it work.

The Pope has also written a note of greeting and blessing to the children who greeted him in Piazza Solferino and on the way to Caselle . We will do have to all parishes, will be published by the Voice of the People and of http://www.sindone.org. The text says: “Dear children, I left Turin after my visit, bearing in our hearts your joyful greeting, I have blessed and I invite you to always be friends of Jesus and of you, to give everyone his Gospel of love and peace. I cordially bless you together with your parents, priests and leaders. Pray for me. Francesco 22.6 2015 “.

From the speeches and gestures of the Holy Father will derive a pastoral letter to the city and to the Diocese because both the support base of our common path for the next years.

The intervention of Elis Tisi, President of the Organizing Committee and Deputy Mayor of Turin Exposition

I Exposition of 67 days have left a mark on the city. I am proof that Turin knows mobilize in all its various social and economic components.

Turin has been able to field his best forces, for the visit of Pope Francis where 600 firefighters who served together with the police and the prefecture to ensure everyone a peaceful performance of the two days.

It was enshrined in the ability to collaborate between different parties to achieve common goals.Working together is the key to achieving the best results. This is demonstrated by the work of the Diocesan Youth Ministry who welcomed thousands of young people from around the world, the Ministry of Health who coordinated initiatives shelter for sick and disabled, including the Home, and collaboration with associations working in prisons Le Vallette and Ferrante Aporti. It also shows the sensitivity of the business community who have contributed in various ways all’ostensione.

All these examples confirm that Turin is on track to build a culture of welfare and that makes us look to the future with greater confidence.

Guest Posting: The Shroud of Turin – An X-Ray?

imageIn 1999, investigative reporter Linda Moulton Howe interviewed the now-late chemist Dr. Giles Carter.  The interview was posted on her site, Earthfiles. Because the interview is behind a subscriber wall, Linda has kindly given Joe Marino permission to reproduce the (copyrighted) interview below as it appears on her site.


The Shroud of Turin – An X-Ray?

© 1999 by Linda Moulton Howe

May 23, 1999 Clemson, South Carolina – Back in the early 1980’s while I was Director of Special Projects at the CBS station in Denver, Colorado, I read a newspaper report about an American Chemical Society meeting in which a chemist named Giles Carter from Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti, Michigan presented a formal paper entitled: Formation of the Image on the Shroud of Turin by X-rays: A New Hypothesis. (© 1982 Giles F. Carter, Ph.D., Eastern Michigan University Chemistry Department, Ypsilanti, Michigan received for review Oct. 6, 1982 and accepted for publication April 18, 1983, American Chemical Society Volume on Archaeological Chemistry.)

I was so provoked by this news that I called Dr. Carter up to talk about the laboratory work that had helped him come to this startling idea. Dr. Carter received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley where he specialized in x-ray diffraction to determine crystal structures. He went on to be a Professor of Chemistry at Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, and is now Professor Emeritus. Dr. Carter began studying Roman coins with x-ray fluorescence in 1963. Over the next 32 years until he retired in 1995, Dr. Carter used x-ray fluorescence continually in his university work analyzing hundreds of coins, elements and metals. In 1981, he attended a Shroud of Turin Research Project in New London, Connecticut and saw slides of the image on the Shroud for the first time.


Interview:

Giles Carter, Ph.D., retired Professor of Chemistry and X-Ray Fluorescence Expert from Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, Michigan: "It was at that time, I noticed from the slides what appeared to be possibly x-ray images of fingers and also of teeth. And that began, or gave me the idea that perhaps low energy x-rays were involved in the formation of these images on the Shroud. Then, when I went home to East Michigan University in Ypsilanti, Michigan, I carried out some experiments similar to what I had done with the analysis of Roman coins — namely I placed samples of cloth in the x-ray beam and exposed that to the x-rays for different periods of time. And noticed that I did indeed get images formed on the cloth. And these images did appear certainly in color similar to what I had seen in the slides, because I had not seen the Shroud of Turin directly myself. Never have.

So, I carried out quite a few experiments exposing cloth to various exposures, putting aluminum foil in the path of the x-rays which absorbed the low energy x-rays and when I did that I didn’t get much of an image at all. And that proved that most of the image I was getting was from low energy x-rays which was my hypothesis in the first place. 
After producing a number of these, I took a trip out to Calif. For to see family and at that time I arranged to see Vernon Miller who was the official photographer in the 1978 testing that the STURP scientists did.

At that time, Vernon Miller said, "Oh, this coloration is just like the coloration on the Shroud." And at that point, he gave me a nice enlargement of the hand of the Shroud. And this helped to convince me even more that what a lot of people called the "too long fingers" and the shortened wrist actually was both an image from the surface and an x-ray image all at the same time. And that would be in agreement with my hypothesis that a lot of the Shroud image was actually formed from low energy x-rays.

THEN THE QUESTION WOULD BE: WHAT WOULD PROVOKE THE LOW-ENERGY X-RAYS TO EMANATE FROM THE BONE OUTWARD THROUGH THE SKIN TO THE LINEN SHROUD THAT WOULD BE ENFOLDING THE BODY OF CHRIST?

My hypothesis for that is that higher energy x-rays which are more penetrating emanated from the bones of this individual and passed through the skin and at the surface of the skin interacted with elements such as sodium and chlorine from salts and chloride on the surface or from sulfur or phosphorous in the skin. And these elements then, like sodium and chlorine, gave off secondary x-rays which are very low in energy and not penetrating at all. And it’s these x-rays that actually caused most of the image, or all of the image, of the Shroud.

Now, people have asked me: Where did the x-rays from the bones come from? And I cannot answer that question. If one believes that the Shroud of Turin actually covered the body of Christ, then one would say, "Well, from the Resurrection Process." But no scientist can say anything about a resurrection process because there is no direct experience with that other than perhaps the Shroud, but we don’t know about that at all. So, in other words, scientifically you can say nothing about the Resurrection Process.

On the other hand, artistically it’s rather interesting — for instance, in the film ET, the extraterrestrial or alien was resurrected by a strong beam of light. I always thought that was rather curious that they would choose that sort of thing. And who knows, what the Resurrection Process was for Christ according to Christian belief. No one knows about that. No scientists can really do anything other than speculate.

So again, I had offered one explanation that perhaps there was radiation in the rocks around where the body was laid. But one of my friends said, "That really is not a very good explanation." And I agree. That’s very, very weak and I doubt that happened. Basically, I have no explanation.

WHAT KIND OF FORCE FROM THE OUTSIDE WOULD YOU HYPOTHESIZE COULD CAUSE STRONG X-RAYS TO EMANATE FROM THE BONE AND THEN PRODUCE THE WEAKER X-RAYS AT THE SURFACE OF THE SKIN?

The only thing that I would say is that some form of energy would have been necessary to enter the bones to cause x-rays to emanate from the bones. And that would cause the secondary, or even tertiary at this point, x-rays from the skin to come out. So, what that energy source was — the external energy source entering the bones — I really don’t know about that. It’s just beyond us , beyond me to speculate on that. I really can’t say.

ISN’T IT TRUE THAT NEW INFORMATION THAT HAS BEEN PRESENTED SINCE THE FIRST CARBON DATING IS THAT THERE COULD BE A BIOLOGICAL COATING ON THE LINEN ITSELF WHERE THE CARBON DATING WAS MEASURING AS OPPOSED TO THE ACTUAL DATE OF THE LINEN?

Well, there have been several hypotheses put forward to explain in certain peoples minds why the Carbon 14 dating was wrong. My own feeling on that is that linen fibrils are hollow and the sample taken from the Shroud for the Carbon 14 dating was taken from absolutely the worst possible place — namely, one lower corner which was right next to the edge of the Shroud and it was also the corner, or one of the corners, where people handled it the most. Now if people handled that or if materials were put on the Shroud in an attempt to preserve it hundreds of years ago, it’s possible that over along period of time that some of these organic materials could have diffused or moved through the linen fibrils and into the interior. Now, if this is the case, it would have been impossible through just a short cleaning, using just solvents which the scientists used before the Carbon-14 testing — it would have been impossible to remove that interior carbon-containing material.

THEY WOULD HAVE BEEN MEASURING AN ARTIFACT OF ALL THAT HANDLING?

Right, they would be measuring more recent carbon-containing material, maybe from 100 or 200 years ago, or something like that. So they would just be getting the average age coming out around 1300 A.D.

WHEREAS THE TRUTH MIGHT BE THAT IF THEY HAD CARBON DATED LINEN WHERE THE ACTUAL IMAGE IS, IT MIGHT HAVE GONE BACK TO 32 A.D.?

That’s possible. And that’s why I think the Carbon-14 dating should be repeated and done very carefully according to the procedure that the Shroud of Turin Research Project outlined in the first place. Their procedure was NOT followed at all in the Carbon-14 testing. So, the whole testing process was — in the opinion of many scientists, not done very well. It’s not that the carbon-14 test itself was poor. I think most everyone says that the laboratories are capable of getting good results from the sample they have. But it’s namely, a sampling problem. So always in an analysis, you have both a problem of sampling. Is the sample what you want it to be? Is it representative of the material that you want analyzed? And then is the analysis itself correct? There are two different problems. The analysis itself could be correct, but if the sampling is not done correctly, then the end result is going to be wrong.

THE SAMPLING IN THIS CASE WOULD BE WHICH PARTICULAR LINEN FIBER AFFECTED A THOUSAND HANDLINGS OVER A LONG PERIOD OF TIME AT THE CORNER VERSUS A PIECE WHERE THE IMAGE IS THAT MIGHT NOT HAVE BEEN TOUCHED MUCH AT ALL?

That’s correct. There’s one other factor there and that is that the sample that was taken for the Carbon-14 analysis was removed from a position adjacent to a side panel which had been sewn onto the Shroud. It wasn’t sewn on using thread or anything like that. It was actually WOVEN on to the material, so some of the weaving from that side panel was actually in some of those fibers in the sample that was removed for the Carbon-14 date. No one knows when that side panel of 6-inches or so was applied to the Shroud. No one knows that! And here again, those more possibly recent fibrils could have affected the Carbon-14 dates.

WHY WOULD THE CARBON-14 BE DONE ON A THREAD TAKEN FROM A PANEL THAT EVERYONE KNEW HAD BEEN WOVEN IN AT SOME UNKNOWN POINT IN THE PAST?

That’s a good question! It remains unanswered. The Italian authorities decided to change where the sample was removed and perhaps they did that because there was political pressure applied over there. Many years ago I attended a meeting in Naples with the scientist who was in charge of advising the Roman Catholic Church about the Shroud and he told me enormous political pressures had been applied on him in the past about the Shroud. There were many people in Italy and Europe who first of all were opposed to scientists examining the Shroud at all.

Secondly, they were opposed to scientists from the United States being so heavily involved. They wanted more Italians and more Europeans represented. So, here again, it’s difficult to know what happened there. No one really knows outside the people who were really there at the time. And I think we can only speculate that maybe pressure had been brought to bear — no, we will not follow the STURP, which was American-proposed procedure for doing the Carbon-14. We will do it according — we will take a sample from a place that won’t be noticed in the future from the Shroud — take it from that lower corner. And only have 3 labs run the carbon-14, instead of 7 labs. And have it done by only one method instead of two methods which the STURP had proposed."


Photograph is from the Eastern Michigan University Department of Chemistry Newsletter published in the Spring of 2011.

Three Millions Page Views

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We passed the mark about an hour ago.

Tweeted Photo of the Day Yesterday

Some of the first people to see the Shroud after the exposition opened yesterday.

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Barrie Schwortz on The Edge with Daniel Ott

Link to YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=150&v=Glnq0fL2vj4

The Edge?  Daniel Ott?  From the show’s website:

Daniel Ott is the Cosmic Cowboy host of The Edge News Television Broadcast. Every week,  along with parodies, investigative and educational journalism, you’ll hear exciting interviews on topics such as 9/11, Angels, Near Death Experiences, Planetary Anomalies,  Black Ops, to Alternative Science,  Prophesies, Lost Continents, Aliens, Cryptozoology, Bio Warfare and  much more!  The Edge also brings in some fun stuff along the way!

One that comes to mind is a favorite photographer around here

imageA reader writes:

Hi – I’m a photographer and have hung out on photo forums for as long as they’ve been in existence.  On several reputable forums I posed the question: "Since all of you professional photographers believe that photography was invented circa 1830, and that creating a photographic negative would have been very difficult circa year 1300, and further that making a 6 foot long and detailed negative on linen cloth at that time would have been essentially impossible, what do photographers think of the claim that such a thing was actually done 700 years ago?"

So far my posts have not even been acknowledged.

Let’s see what happens. Just remember there are few photographers on this blog. One that comes to mind is a favorite photographer around here.

Good Friday 2015

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Second illustration in the Hungarian Pray Manuscript (or Pray Codex) as seen in the National Széchényi Library of Budapest. Named after György Pray who studied it in the late 1700s.

Double-0-7’s Big 3 Analysis

Double 0 is code for license to kill. Good Shepard with a license to kill?

GoodShepard007 has posted a new video on YouTube: Finding Jesus in the Shroud. It runs about ten minutes. It is a video on matching the faces of the Shroud, the Manoppello, the Sinai Pantocrator, and a fresco of Jesus supposedly from the 1st century.  And – read on – it  is a video that makes a big deal about the number 3.

Double-0-7 tells us at YouTube:

This video shows the top 3 images in the world that match up with The Turin Shroud. After viewing the overlay images there is discussion about whether a blood stain in the shape of #3 is a random event or not. I believe the identity of the Man in the Shroud is written plainly on the right side of his forehead. The answer to the mystery of who this man is has always been right in front of our face, clearly written out. Sometimes the most obvious clue is overlooked by a forensic pathologist or detective working on an unsolved murder case or when trying to make positive ID on a victim of a wrongful death. Often the case is solved by the most obvious clue that was there from the beginning that they somehow overlooked or passed off as being coincidence. Take a look at the next 30 “Coincidences” and listen to your inner voice and trust your gut feeling, what is it telling you?

1. Jesus prayed (3) three times in the Garden of Gethsemane before His arrest.
2. Jesus was on cross for 3 hours
3. There were 3 hours of darkness while Jesus was on the cross
4. NASA confirmed there was a blood moon in Jerusalem on Friday April 3, 33AD
5. Jonah was in the belly of the whale for 3 days

[…]

And the list goes on and on over at YouTube.

And how did I miss this spy clue in the past? Galatians 3:1 tells us:

You foolish Galatians! Who put you under a spell? Was not Jesus the Messiah clearly portrayed before your very eyes as having been crucified?

Well, maybe because different versions say it differently. For instance NRSV:

You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was before your eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly exhibited as crucified!

And, of course, context is everything.

BTW: Double 0 is code for license to kill. Good Shepard with a license to kill?

Of course, context is everything.

Maybe Novels Should Be Peer Reviewed

“The cover said Thermochimica Acta  … an American chemist
from the national laboratory at Los Alamos”

image

Caldwell’s previous novel, The Rule of Four, was at the top of the New York Times Best Seller list for more than six months. As Dan Brown proved with The Da Vinci Code people believe what they read in novels.

With Nelson DeMille saying, “The Fifth Gospel is nothing short of groundbreaking—a literary feast wrapped around an intriguing murder mystery. Caldwell writes with precision and passion as he takes us on an emotional journey deep into the workings of the Vatican and deeper into the hearts and souls of the men and women who have devoted their lives to the Church. The Fifth Gospel is a cathedral where skeptics and believers alike may enter and all will leave transformed.” …

With Publishers Weekly, Kirkus Reviews and Booklist praising it as much as they do, it is destined for best seller status. Library Journal wrote of it, “Captivating . . . This thriller is, at its heart, a story of sacrifice, forgiveness, and redemption. Peppered with references to real-life people, places, and events, the narrative rings true, taking the reader on an emotional journey nearly two thousand years in the making.”

And so we read why the carbon dating was wrong (remember, this is a novel):

“A fire broke out,” Ugo said. “In 1532, the Shroud was being kept in a reliquary made of silver. The fire melted part of it. A drop of molten silver landed on the Shroud, burning through every layer of the folded cloth. The damaged linen had to be repaired by Poor Clare nuns. Which brings me to my point.”

Nogara plucked a trade journal from a bookshelf and handed it to me. The cover said Thermochimica Acta.

“This coming January,” he continued, “an American chemist from the national laboratory at Los Alamos will publish an article in that scientific journal. A friend at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences sent me an early copy. See for yourself.”

[…]

And there it was: “Studies on the Radiocarbon Sample from the Shroud of Turin.”

It contained pictures of what looked like worms on microscope slides, and charts I couldn’t fathom. At the beginning of the text, though, in the abstract, were two sentences whose gist I understood:

Pyrolysis-mass-spectrometry results from the sample area coupled with microscopic and microchemical observations prove that the radiocarbon sample was not part of the original cloth of the Shroud of Turin. The radiocarbon date was thus not valid for determining the true age of the shroud.

“The sample wasn’t part of the Shroud?” I said. “How is that possible?”

Nogara sighed. “We didn’t realize how much work the Poor Clare nuns ad done. We knew they had seven patches over the holes. We didn’t now—because we couldn’t see—that they had also woven threads into the Shroud to strengthen it. Only under a microscope could they be distinguished. So, inadvertently, we tested a fabric that mixed original linen with repair threads. This American chemist is the first to have discovered the mistake. One of his colleagues has told me that parts of the sample weren’t even linen. The nuns made their repairs with cotton.”

A cool energy spread through the room. In Nogara’s eyes was a controlled giddiness.

“Alli,” Simon whispered, “this is it. This is finally it.”

Remember, it is a novel. Maybe novels should be peer reviewed.