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On Dr Ben Carson, the Devil, science vs medicine and saving life

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I passed by and noted a dismissive comment (or a few) regarding US Presidential candidate, retired neurosurgeon Dr Ben Carson:

CASE A: he’s running for President of the United States of America; he’s a politician who’s put religion and science into his platform. He willingly exposed himself to criticism and does not deserve a pass because he did good things as a surgeon.

CASE B: Dr Carson. He is clearly a talented physician, but get him talking about evolution or cosmology and he turns into Ken Ham. Looks like a classic case of willful ignorance to me; he should know better. Is that acceptable for the president of a world power?

CASE C: Surgery is to science what carpentry is to engineering.

CASE D: it is a sad and disturbing aspect of our times that the scientific views of a neurosurgeon could be swayed by an argument rooted in the supposed existence of an atavistic embodiment of evil, Satan.

I believe this pattern requires an answer, and so:

KF, 29: >>Folks,

I see, above, a snide dismissal of the possibility of a devil.

Perhaps, the White Rose Martyrs, from that same central european country, can tell us a few things about the matter, in their tracts that cost them their lives:

WR, II: Since the conquest of Poland three hundred thousand Jews have been murdered in this country in the most bestial way . . . The German people slumber on in their dull, stupid sleep and encourage these fascist criminals . . . Each man wants to be exonerated of a guilt of this kind, each one continues on his way with the most placid, the calmest conscience. But he cannot be exonerated; he is guilty, guilty, guilty!

WR, IV: Every word that comes from Hitler’s mouth is a lie. When he says peace, he means war, and when he blasphemously uses the name of the Almighty, he means the power of evil, the fallen angel, Satan. His mouth is the foul-smelling maw of Hell, and his might is at bottom accursed. True, we must conduct a struggle against the National Socialist terrorist state with rational means; but whoever today still doubts the reality, the existence of demonic powers, has failed by a wide margin to understand the metaphysical background of this war.

Given a long, sad and evidently unfinished history of significant political leaders who have manifested destructive mesmerising deception and Nero-like demonically murderous violence or enabling of such, we need to pay these paid- for- in- blood- and- tears words very careful heed.

Further to this, in recent weeks, the issue of the mass slaughter of is it 58 million American babies since 1973 has been forcefully put on the table in the context of the demonstrated pattern of the cutting up of these little boys and girls and selling their organs for tainted medical research all too reminiscent of Dr Mengele and co at Auschwitz. Research indicates that the global total at the same time is of order many hundreds of millions, altogether forming a mass global holocaust of the most innocent and voiceless among us, the worst in history.

The major media voices, with scarce few exceptions, are implicated in at minimum enabling behaviour.

The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your body will be full of light. But if your eyes are bad you will be full of darkness. If the imagined light in you is darkness, how great is your darkness.

I ask: who said that, on what occasion, as recorded in what piece of literature. And, how is this connected to Dr Carson?

In the case of Dr Carson, we have a man who instead of enabling the imagined light that is instead destructive darkness, dedicated himself to saving lives of children, improving their health and life prospects, and in so doing became a world class pioneer in neurosurgery, one of the most difficult facets of medicine.

A professional discipline steeped in knowledge and skill in many linked scientific domains.

Where the patent fact is, for many many areas of its praxis, macro-evolutionary theory, despite many assertions to the contrary, has proved utterly irrelevant.

Save, that the events of Dr Mengele and co are connected with a drastic breakdown of ethics tied to the ways in which evolutionary materialist ideology and its fellow travellers, dressed up in lab coats, seized control of institutions and the imaginations of the elites from the late C19 on.

Dr Carson, by his life, has shown us through example that a seventh day adventist and it seems young earth creationist, can successfully practice deeply scientific fields at the highest level. (BTW, I am not such an adventist.)

He has shown how the ethics of the gospel move one to save life.

He has shown how members of races of even imagined genetically inferior IQ and from very deprived circumstances can through vision, determination and parental input (imagine, an illiterate demanding regular book reports and using that to spark educational transformation) rise to the very highest levels despite obstacles.

He has shown that such a person, in retirement, can stand up in the face of a civilisation headed over the cliff and say, there is a better way, come let us turn back before it is too late.

change_chall

And what is the reaction of the jaded, sophisticated, sneering media elites?

Oh, he says sibboleth, not shibboleth, let us destroy him as he is a threat to our agendas.

For shame!

GEM of TKI

PS: Oddly, just last evening (while substituting for a substantive tutor) I was demonstrating to local physics students roughly comparable to freshmen, angular momentum conservation. Dr Carson has in fact in brief alluded to some of the difficulties of solar system formation models, relative to the distribution of angular momentum. Such is an issue, and in fact, confident manner to the contrary, there is no established, demonstrated to be empirically reliable theory of spontaneous solar system formation. Again, this highlights a common failure to give a balanced view of strengths and limitations of science and science education. And in particular the tendencies to ignore the vera causa principle and to treat models as though they were facts.>>

I think we need to look again, at how we are thinking, at how we allow media to manipulate us, at how we project ideologically and what we suppress in the context of what we imagine is light in us. END

49 Replies to “On Dr Ben Carson, the Devil, science vs medicine and saving life

  1. 1
    daveS says:

    KF,

    but whoever today still doubts the reality, the existence of demonic powers, has failed by a wide margin to understand the metaphysical background of this war.

    Is the statement “demonic powers exist in the world today” falsifiable?

    (Edited)

  2. 2
    kairosfocus says:

    DS, actually it is very verifiable and verified, with a very large number of eyewitnesses. Just, not very politically correct in the western, evolutionary materialism-dominated world that locks out relevant evidence. For instance, I have recently personally witnessed demonisation manifesting in levitation, in a semi-public situation, with many other eyewitnesses. (Stage magic tricks were not possible, and indeed the relevant people were studiously ignoring the matter to get on with the prayer-business in hand; and the victim, who was in a dead faint, did not know.) Also manifest was the liberating power of God. And on the wider matter, the positively transforming, liberating power of God is also manifest and verified with millions of cases in point, but this too is not even listened to by those determined to reject such a possibility. But then, we have seen right here at UD people in recent days refusing to acknowledge distinct identity and associated self evident first truths. At this stage the realities are not on trial, we are. KF

    PS: The logic is, that if something supposedly manifest and acting is instead not evident and verifiable through actions or consequences, there is no good basis to hold it. So in such a case utter absence of evidence would be evidence of absence. Just like, the utter lack of evidence of a gorilla sitting across the table from me is evidence of the falsity of such a claim as that one is there.

  3. 3
    sean samis says:

    Your CASE A is an extract of something I wrote yesterday, something which does not even mention Satan; something I was not even thinking of.

    Tsk. This is an fabricated controversy.

    If Dr. Carson wants to be a politician, then he needs to accept the standard treatment political candidates get. If he can’t hack it, he needs to find another calling.

    Satan has nothing to do with this.

    sean s.

  4. 4
    daveS says:

    KF,

    Just like, the utter lack of evidence of a gorilla sitting across the table from me is evidence of the falsity of such a claim as that one is there.

    Sure, I agree that this claim is falsifiable. However, I really doubt that there is any way to falsify the claim I gave in my post #1. Any unfortunate event such as a natural disaster, a mass killing, etc., will likely be interpreted by someone as the act of demons or Satan.

    On another note, I’ve heard all sorts of stories, but have seen no convincing evidence. Dr Torley referred to an alleged incidence of levitation which lasted for 30 minutes, yet apparently no one bothered to take any photos or video.

    Cameras are ubiquitous these days. If these incidents are indeed happening, why isn’t anyone snapping a photo with their smartphone?

  5. 5
    Dr JDD says:

    Falsify the historical veracity convincingly of the new testament and you’d be well on your way to falsifying demons and demon possession.

    The problem is you can’t falsify that.

  6. 6
    sean samis says:

    Dr JDD @5

    The problem is, you also cannot verify the new testament. Things that can be neither verified nor falsified are unreliable and suspect.

    So, barring some verification that no one’s provided yet, the New Testament must be treated skeptically.

    sean s.

  7. 7
    bornagain77 says:

    I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist (Session 3) – Norman Geisler, PhD – video
    The Unmatched Reliability of the New Testament
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q8GN1k-ocLw&list=PL-0zpu2toenaPM19kDyBsPibjaGAxup9K&index=3

    How Reliable Is the New Testament? – Dr. Daniel Wallace (16:30 minute mark of video “The New Testament has an ‘embarrassment of riches’ compared to other ancient texts”) – video (Dr. Wallace publicly debated Bart Ehrman 3 times)
    http://www.watermark.org/media.....ment/2305/

    The reliability of the New Testament compared to other ancient texts – graph
    http://visualunit.files.wordpr.....ility1.jpg

    J. Warner Wallace Lectures on the Evidence for Christianity – video
    Description: Cold-case detective J. Warner Wallace, and author of Cold-Case Christianity, presented this lecture via Skype at Reasonable Faith Belfast on Monday, 3rd December 2012. He talks about the nature of evidence, possibility and reason, the chain of custody for the New Testament documents, and much more. The lecture is about an hour (with great visuals), followed by about 30 minutes of Q&A.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DiYQzOypD9o

    The (Unmatched Historical Reliability of the) Resurrection of Jesus – Dr. Gary R. Habermas (On Guard Conference 2013) – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNdmSQKyzgc

  8. 8
    kairosfocus says:

    SS, I clipped a cluster of points covering an indicated range of topics, leading in the headline with one that is particularly striking. Likewise you continue to be hyperskeptically dismissive of a far more than adequate record of the NT. KF

  9. 9
    kairosfocus says:

    DS, I and dozens of others were present and I as representative report. I do not walk around with a cell phone but know what I and others saw, which I have accurately summarised. When I see the demand for more, more in the face of adequate evidence it tells me that there is something wrong. And frankly, I would have objected to photography or videos of the incidence, there is no need to further subject the family to public glare. Besides, were videos and photos produced, they would instantly be subjected to accusations of manipulation. In the end, when in recent weeks we saw the attitude to self-evident truth that has been so stridently advanced it changed the situation. Critics of that ilk and their fellow travellers simply discredit themselves from the pale of reasonable discussion. KF

  10. 10
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: I note again Simon Greenleaf in Evidence, vol 1 ch 1:

    Evidence, in legal acceptation, includes all the means by which any alleged matter of fact, the truth of which is submitted to investigation, is established or disproved . . . None but mathematical truth is susceptible of that high degree of evidence, called demonstration, which excludes all possibility of error [–> Greenleaf wrote almost 100 years before Godel], and which, therefore, may reasonably be required in support of every mathematical deduction.

    Matters of fact are proved by moral evidence alone; by which is meant, not only that kind of evidence which is employed on subjects connected with moral conduct, but all the evidence which is not obtained either from intuition, or from demonstration. In the ordinary affairs of life, we do not require demonstrative evidence, because it is not consistent with the nature of the subject, and to insist upon it would be unreasonable and absurd.

    The most that can be affirmed of such things, is, that there is no reasonable doubt concerning them.

    The true question, therefore, in trials of fact, is not whether it is possible that the testimony may be false, but, whether there is sufficient probability of its truth; that is, whether the facts are shown by competent and satisfactory evidence. Things established by competent and satisfactory evidence are said to be proved.

    By competent evidence, is meant that which the very-nature of the thing to be proved requires, as the fit and appropriate proof in the particular case, such as the production of a writing, where its contents are the subject of inquiry. By satisfactory evidence, which is sometimes called sufficient evidence, is intended that amount of proof, which ordinarily satisfies an unprejudiced mind, beyond reasonable doubt.

    The circumstances which will amount to this degree of proof can never be previously defined; the only legal test of which they are susceptible, is their sufficiency to satisfy the mind and conscience of a common man; and so to convince him, that he would venture to act upon that conviction, in matters of the highest concern and importance to his own interest. [A Treatise on Evidence, Vol I, 11th edn. (Boston: Little, Brown, 1888) ch 1., sections 1 and 2. Shorter paragraphs added. (NB: Greenleaf was a founder of the modern Harvard Law School and is regarded as a founding father of the modern Anglophone school of thought on evidence, in large part on the strength of this classic work.)]

    KF

  11. 11
    daveS says:

    KF,

    I understand the interest in protecting the privacy of the levitee, but people are photographed against their will all the time. It’s very odd that not a single example of such a photograph has ever surfaced (which wasn’t an obvious fake).

  12. 12
    kairosfocus says:

    DS, I speak to a case where I (a trained scientific person) am eyeball, mark I with responsible others, under circumstances where people trying to take pictures would have been out of place. If you have a problem with that, no photographic evidence will suffice. And in fact, I checked; the phenomena I saw were not particularly unusual in former days. And, there were aspects I am not talking about that have revised my evaluation of things I once saw as innocent jokes. Moreover, on my own observations etc, I have a very different evaluation of the likelihood of other cases. E.g. I now take much more seriously the reports of poltergeist phenomena at a state house in another island, so much so that soldiers dreaded going there as guards. What I have seen and what has come to me from reliable witnesses and even victims, is consistent with the Gospels and Acts as well as sober minded reports of exorcisms. In general I only will say so much, I have no intention of glorifying malevolent, deceitful powers delighting in ugly intimidatory spectacles and torturing victims; instead I will glorify One whose very name is that of hope and release. That name, of the judicially murdered, Crucified One who rose from the dead with 500 unstoppable witnesses, is the name and paradigmatic case we should give careful heed to. Echoing Ps 95, the inspired writer pleads, today, if you hear his voice, harden not your hearts. KF

  13. 13
    daveS says:

    KF,

    If I recall, in the incident you are describing, the levitee was being lifted and pinned to the ground at the same time, so you are probably right in that I would not find it terribly convincing.

    However, Dr Torley’s case involved a person hovering 6 inches off the ground/table for 30 minutes. I can assure you I would not dismiss it out of hand. If it was of sufficiently high quality, and there were no signs of a hoax, it could be very strong evidence.

  14. 14
    kairosfocus says:

    DS, Someone in a dead faint, head and arms hanging down, entire back ~ 10 cm above floor, level as though on a slab, with hips and legs pinned (wearing the usual blue jeans) — floor clearly visible beneath (ceramic tiled concrete slab) — is not a “real” levitation? And with me standing in clear view about 4 m back, sightly to the left. Repeats several times across perhaps 90 minutes. I think that response rather makes my point. And it underscores why I am not going into further details, they would have no effect. KF

  15. 15
    daveS says:

    KF,

    I wouldn’t use the term “levitation” if the person was in contact with the floor.

    Certainly it’s possible the person could still be touching the floor and in a position which violates the laws of physics, but that’s hard to judge without more detail.

    Dr Torley’s case is simply easier to evaluate because the person was allegedly aloft for half an hour.

  16. 16
    Dr JDD says:

    Sean:
    The historical evidence that verifies the Bible is overwhelming. It is frankly embarrassing how much evidence there is for this book compared to the next best historical documents in terms of quantity and quality of verifiable historical facts.

    Therefore if you are going to use that line, you essentially have to dismiss or call into question all historic evidence pre-1600 say as questionable and unverifiable.

    The number of times people have mocked the Bible for mentioning historic figures (such as Herrod, King David, Solomon, the Canaanites – I could go on) they didn’t have evidence for yet later clear strong archeology call evidence completely backed up is almost countless.

    Yet like the Palestinians and Hezbollah etc who do everything in their might to try and brainwash people into believing temple mount is not a sacred site for Jews and used to belong to them in their lengthy history (so they can claim it as a Muslim site alone, which massively post-dated Jewish sacred ownership of that site), I suspect you will only listen to the similarly biased “evidence” that strives to support the notion that the Bible is not that accurate.

    That is what your father wants for you though.

  17. 17
    bornagain77 says:

    daveS, you claim that you will be fairly reasonable to photographic evidence of levitation:

    “I can assure you I would not dismiss it (a photograph of a levitating body) out of hand. If it was of sufficiently high quality, and there were no signs of a hoax, it could be very strong evidence.”

    Well, will you be fairly reasonable with a photographic negative of levitation that was taken approx. 1800 years before photography was invented?

    Shroud Of Turin – Photographic Negative – 3D Hologram reveals solid oval object with the words “ The Lamb” – video
    http://www.tunesbaby.com/watch/?x=5664213

    The Shroud reveals clear evidence of gravity being defied:

    THE EVENT HORIZON (Space-Time Singularity) OF THE SHROUD OF TURIN. – Isabel Piczek – Particle Physicist
    Excerpt: We have stated before that the images on the Shroud firmly indicate the total absence of Gravity. Yet they also firmly indicate the presence of the Event Horizon. These two seemingly contradict each other and they necessitate the past presence of something more powerful than Gravity that had the capacity to solve the above paradox.
    http://shroud3d.com/findings/i.....-formation

    A Particle Physicist Looks at the Turin Shroud – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bbl4EmoH_jg

    Particle Radiation from the Body – M. Antonacci, A. C. Lind – July 2012
    Excerpt: The Shroud’s frontal and dorsal body images are encoded with the same amount of intensity, independent of any pressure or weight from the body. The bottom part of the cloth (containing the dorsal image) would have born all the weight of the man’s supine body, yet the dorsal image is not encoded with a greater amount of intensity than the frontal image. Radiation coming from the body would not only explain this feature, but also the left/right and light/dark reversals found on the cloth’s frontal and dorsal body images.
    http://www.academicjournals.or.....onacci.pdf

    Many skeptics, in spite of many robust lines of evidence establishing the Shroud’s authenticity, try to say the Shroud Of Turin is merely a medieval hoax because of the flawed carbon dating tests that were done in the late 1980s.
    Yet, here is evidence that conclusively overturns the flawed carbon dating tests that were done on the Shroud in the late 1980s.

    Shroud of Turin – Carbon 14 Test Proven False –
    – Joseph G. Marino and M. Sue Benford – video
    (with Raymond Rogers, lead chemist from the STURP project)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GxDdx6vxthE

    Why The Carbon 14 Samples Are Invalid, Raymond Rogers
    per: Thermochimica Acta (Volume 425 pages 189-194, Los Alamos National Laboratory, University of California)
    Excerpt: Preliminary estimates of the kinetics constants for the loss of vanillin from lignin indicate a much older age for the cloth than the radiocarbon analyses. The radiocarbon sampling area is uniquely coated with a yellow–brown plant gum containing dye lakes. 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 fact that vanillin can not be detected in the lignin on shroud fibers, Dead Sea scrolls linen, and other very old linens indicates that the shroud is quite old. A determination of the kinetics of vanillin loss suggests that the shroud is between 1300- and 3000-years old. Even allowing for errors in the measurements and assumptions about storage conditions, the cloth is unlikely to be as young as 840 years.
    http://www.ntskeptics.org/issu.....oudold.htm

    “The age-dating process failed to recognize one of the first rules of analytical chemistry that any sample taken for characterization of an area or population must necessarily be representative of the whole. The part must be representative of the whole. Our analyses of the three thread samples taken from the Raes and C-14 sampling corner showed that this was not the case……. LANL’s work confirms the research published in Thermochimica Acta (Jan. 2005) by the late Raymond Rogers, a chemist who had studied actual C-14 samples and concluded the sample was not part of the original cloth possibly due to the area having been repaired.”
    – Robert Villarreal – Los Alamos National Laboratory
    http://www.ohioshroudconference.com/

  18. 18
    bornagain77 says:

    Here is a bit more evidence overturning the claim that the Shroud is a medieval hoax

    Turin Shroud ‘is not a medieval forgery’ – 28 Mar 2013
    Excerpt: Experiments conducted by scientists at the University of Padua in northern Italy have dated the shroud to ancient times, a few centuries before and after the life of Christ.,,,
    The analysis is published in a new book, “Il Mistero della Sindone” or The Mystery of the Shroud, by Giulio Fanti, a professor of mechanical and thermal measurement at Padua University,,,
    Scientists, including Prof Fanti, used infra-red light and spectroscopy – the measurement of radiation intensity through wavelengths – to analyse fibres from the shroud,,,
    The tests dated the age of the shroud to between 300 BC and 400AD.,,,
    Scientists have never been able to explain how the image of a man’s body, complete with nail wounds to his wrists and feet, pinpricks from thorns around his forehead and a spear wound to his chest, could have formed on the cloth. Mr Fanti said the imprint was caused by a blast of “exceptional radiation”, although he stopped short of describing it as a miracle.
    He said his tests backed up earlier results which claimed to have found on the shroud traces of dust and pollen which could only have come from the Holy Land.,,,
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/new.....rgery.html

    Giulio Fanti and the Turin Shroud – load bearing test, infared test, Shroud dated to time of Christ – 34:00 minute mark – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I4c4812XA9A

    Shroud Of Turin – Sewn From Two Pieces – 2000 Years Old (Matches Masada Cloth) – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uST6qt9pfoo

    The Shroud of Turin – Evidence it is authentic
    Excerpt: In June 2002, the Shroud was sent to a team of experts for restoration. One of them was Swiss textile historian Mechthild Flury-Lemberg. She was surprised to find a peculiar stitching pattern in the seam of one long side of the Shroud, where a three-inch wide strip of the same original fabric was sewn onto a larger segment. The stitching pattern, which she says was the work of a professional, is quite similar to the hem of a cloth found in the tombs of the Jewish fortress of Masada. The Masada cloth dates to between 40 BC and 73 AD. This kind of stitch has never been found in Medieval Europe.
    http://www.newgeology.us/presentation24.html

    Scientists say Turin Shroud is supernatural – December 2011
    Excerpt: After years of work trying to replicate the colouring on the shroud, a similar image has been created by the scientists.
    However, they only managed the effect by scorching equivalent linen material with high-intensity ultra violet lasers, undermining the arguments of other research, they say, which claims the Turin Shroud is a medieval hoax.
    Such technology, say researchers from the National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (Enea), was far beyond the capability of medieval forgers, whom most experts have credited with making the famous relic.
    “The results show that a short and intense burst of UV directional radiation can colour a linen cloth so as to reproduce many of the peculiar characteristics of the body image on the Shroud of Turin,” they said.
    And in case there was any doubt about the preternatural degree of energy needed to make such distinct marks, the Enea report spells it out: “This degree of power cannot be reproduced by any normal UV source built to date.”
    http://www.independent.co.uk/n.....79512.html

  19. 19
    kairosfocus says:

    DS,

    pardon me but really now.

    I note, just for reference: it is generally physically impossible for a dead faint, limp body to support the back etc parallel to the floor and elevated by ~ 10 cm. There was no visible superincumbent weight on hips etc to counter-weight the natural tendency of a body at rest to balance moments about its centre of mass. The moments do not add up, there obviously is no gyroscope inside the human body on a relevant scale, there was no precession, and there were no strings etc. (Indeed, months later I asked the former victim about the experience . . . utterly unaware of what had happened, i.e. indeed dead faint.)

    In short, you are trying to dismiss what you have not seen while discussing with an eyewitness who knows what normally would happen, why and what happened entailing invisible means of support. Where stage magic tricks were not even on the cards. (David Copperfield et al were nowhere nearby, nor were such welcome. Serious business was in hand that day, not entertainment or trickery.)

    I am not interested here in trying to “prove” to you that what happened happened, I am highlighting to you the sort of resorts you are using to dismiss.

    And, frankly, this is something that I am not particularly wanting to give more spotlight to than strictly necessary as a discussion of hyperskeptical tendencies.

    The real glory in this belongs to One who in mercy gave deliverance to a victim of attacks of evil, and in the course of which, prevented evil from putting on an intimidatory spectacle. And, to effect that liberation in love, that deliverer took fearsome wounds unto death, but by God’s power effected the greatest “levitation” of all, rising from the dead with 500 witnesses and Ascending to glory with a cloud of witnesses.

    (And no, I do not need to appeal to the Shroud of Turin and Mandilion [sp?] of Oviedo to “prove” a case, solid multiple eyewitness testimony and record of such from witnesses of truth is one of the strongest proofs there is, the proof of character. [Indeed, our cynical dismissive tendencies in our time are an implicit indictment, the mirror projects what is reflected from one’s own heart. Yes, liars exist, but truthful witnesses willing to speak truth at any threat to silence them also exist; witnesses, not mere later adherents.] And, you need to work through the minimal facts issues: cf http://nicenesystheol.blogspot.....l#u1_grnds on. Watch the vid too, please.)

    In that context his Name — his authority and power bound up in that “strong tower” — routinely effects liberation and transformation, with millions of cases across 2,000 years.

    Which, sadly, is also being widely discounted or dismissed without serious consideration by those who have every opportunity to know better.

    Here is the verdict, from the lips of One who knows better than you or I can:

    Lk 16:27 And he [Dives] said, ‘Then I beg you, father, to send him to my father’s house— 28 for I have five brothers[g]—so that he may warn them, lest they also come into this place of torment.’

    29 But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’

    30 And he [Dives] said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’

    31 He [Abraham] said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.’”

    Which is exactly what happened on the ground, the warning in the parable was not heeded.

    Taking in the wider parable, a very good test of our heart-condition is what we do when the poor and suffering come to our gates, why.

    Then, the next test is how we respond to the counsels of God through the authenticated tradition of the prophets, with now Jesus of Nazareth “the chief cornerstone” and his apostles as his spokesmen. With eyewitness lifetime record faithfully transmitted to us.

    Those are the tests we must meet.

    There is bad news for post-modern Western man, with a civilisation in the full grip of a march of folly.

    But there is good news, this is a day in which deliverance by grace is freely offered to those simply willing to drink the water of life freely.

    Sadly, too many would die of dehydration in the face of abundant globally available showers of blessings.

    Today, if you hear His voice, harden not your heart.

    Be not like the horse or mule, which lack understanding and must be curbed with bit and bridle.

    And, Micah 6:8 is classic:

    He has told you, O man, what is good;
    and what does the Lord require of you
    but to do justice, and to love kindness,[b]
    and to walk humbly with your God?

    Song:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CIJIqwCIPcw

    KF

  20. 20
    bornagain77 says:

    Here is a fairly recent lecture series on the Shroud:

    The Shroud Of Turin – An Enduring Mystery – Dr. Ray Schnieder – 5 part lecture series
    Dr. Schneider Five Part Series – Part 1: Introduction
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsDm1IyVd2w

    Dr. Schneider Five Part Series – Part 2: Science
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=17d0YTfUbwU

    Dr. Schneider Five Part Series – Part 3: History
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wI-0v-p18IA

    Dr. Schneider Five Part Series – Part 4: Skeptics
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wBTuqkYWJ_Q

    Dr. Schneider Five Part Series – Part 5: Conclusion
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eQg7kiXmsnk

    The Shroud Of Turin – An Enduring Mystery – Dr. Ray Schnieder – homepage with links to powerpoints for each lecture
    http://www.shrouduniversity.com/schneider5part.php

  21. 21
    Box says:

    KF: And, frankly, this is something that I am not particularly wanting to give more spotlight to than strictly necessary as a discussion of hyperskeptical tendencies.

    Almost 3 years ago I shared the account of my miraculous escape from death. WJMurray added his own (similar) mind boggling story.
    Honesty compels me to say that I can fully relate to the “hyperskeptical” on this forum.

    Box:
    I have told this to my wife, my mother and my best friend. These people want to believe me but even for them it is quite a stretch. I’m not even sure that I can believe it myself. What I’m sure of is that I try to be as accurate and honest as possible when I tell the story.

    I know it sounds absurd, but I do have problems believing it myself. That hasn’t changed. What is also true that I have been as accurate and honest as possible when I tell the story …

  22. 22
    Andre says:

    I guess my miracle is not anywhere near what you guys had, although looking back I should have been dead a few times.

    I was an atheist until the 28th of July 2010. My brother committed suicide after 13 years of battle with addiction. It was early on the 28th when I left home to go to the state mortuary (pathology offices) to do all the necessary paperwork.

    I was absolutely terrified that morning, nobody other than my wife knew what time I left or where I was going. I remember praying for the first time in my life and I asked an invisible non-existent god to please help me because I did not want to do this alone. When I got to the pathologists offices, there was a car parked next to me, there was a lady inside the car and she was trying to get my attention, I rolled down my window and recognized a familiar face of a friend that I have not seen for many years. She leaned over and said to me;

    P.S. My Wife did not know this person.

    “Not many people believe what I do but God told me this morning that you do not want to be alone” – Strike 1

    We carried on and, completed all the paperwork, in the back of my mind I was dreading the idea of having to do the identification and I said a silent prayer again to a non-existent god about my fear to do so. I did not want to see my dead brother, all bloated and discolored from the carbon monoxide he killed himself with, did you know with in 24 hours after such poisoning your skin goes green and literally starts melting away.

    As I was about to go through, the pathologist stopped me and said that an identification was not needed. – Strike 2

    After all the arrangements were made I drove back home which is about a 45 minute drive, I remember a feeling of guilt coming over me and shame covered me, but as it covered me there was a force that removed it as it tried to spread, I can’t quite explain the feeling of weight and no weight being applied simultaneously. I remember these words in my mind as clear as I do now,

    “Do not be ashamed everything in this world I created” – Strike 3

    I hit the brakes on my car and parked next to the freeway, I called my wife and asked her for her Pastors number, I called Stephen and said to him, to this day I still don’t know why I said it;

    “Stephen I have to give you testimony!!!”

    I told him of everything that happened, and after I finished he said,

    “Amazing I’ve been preparing the preach for the week and it is about the power of prayer.”

    I instantaneously knew that Christ is who He said He was and His truth set me free that day.

  23. 23
    EvilSnack says:

    If disbelief in Darwinism really did fatally compromise a person’s ability to grasp and apply biological concepts, then Ben Carson would have utterly failed in his attempts to become a neurosurgeon.

    BTW, the Turin shroud may have been placed on a dead guy, but the Scriptures say clearly that Jesus’ burial wrappings were not one single piece of fabric.

  24. 24
    bornagain77 says:

    “but the Scriptures say clearly that Jesus’ burial wrappings were not one single piece of fabric.”

    A Clean Cloth What Greek Word Usage Tells Us about the Burial Wrappings of Jesus
    Diana Fulbright Director of Research, Shroud of Turin Center
    http://www.shroud.com/pdfs/n62part7.pdf

    Shroud Of Turin – Sewn From Two Pieces – 2000 Years Old (Matches Masada Cloth) – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uST6qt9pfoo

    The Sudarium of Oviedo (Face Cloth)
    http://www.shroud.com/guscin.htm

    Jewish Burial Practices
    Excerpt: Everything continues to be consistent with the biblical account of the crucifixion and known Jewish burial practices.
    http://shroud2000.com/Articles.....urial.html

    Moreover, the 3-Dimensional/Photographic Negative image on the Shroud was certainly not created by merely placing the shroud ‘on a dead guy’

  25. 25
    daveS says:

    KF,

    I note, just for reference: it is generally physically impossible for a dead faint, limp body to support the back etc parallel to the floor and elevated by ~ 10 cm. There was no visible superincumbent weight on hips etc to counter-weight the natural tendency of a body at rest to balance moments about its centre of mass. The moments do not add up, there obviously is no gyroscope inside the human body on a relevant scale, there was no precession, and there were no strings etc. (Indeed, months later I asked the former victim about the experience . . . utterly unaware of what had happened, i.e. indeed dead faint.)

    Maybe so. But I’m just saying that the case Dr Torley referred to is more clear-cut. As the body was allegedly hovering 6 inches off a surface for an extended period of time, there is no need to do further analysis of the physics involved. If it happened, it’s a genuine levitation.

    Perhaps your case is as well, but it’s just more complicated.

    In short, you are trying to dismiss what you have not seen while discussing with an eyewitness who knows what normally would happen, why and what happened entailing invisible means of support.

    Pardon, but you don’t have access to my thoughts. I have not dismissed your account. However, exchanges between anonymous persons on the internet and no hard evidence can only take us so far. If I described some extraordinary incident that I witnessed, you might not be completely persuaded that it happened without more documentation. I wouldn’t be offended; that’s your duty as a skeptic.

  26. 26
    kairosfocus says:

    Andre,

    My own story is subtler.

    As a child, I nearly died of asthma. More than once. At a certain point, I was fading and after nursing me through yet another night, my mom went to the garden at sunrise and surrendered me to God.

    That day, we went early as possible to a medical centre. No one there yet. As mom half carried me out the door, at the foot of the steps with door open and driver looking up was a taxi cab. Asthma, I know just the doctor.

    In desperation, mom agreed.

    That was the doctor who saved my life.

    A miracle of guidance.

    Recently when my son had a major crisis, there were similar steps of guidance and opened doors, in an almost pointed echo.

    It was not very long after that taxi ride, that I made a firm Christian commitment.

    I am a case in point among millions of God’s positive, transforming intervention in our lives and communication with us.

    Subsequently, especially during my student years, I had to gradually consolidate my understanding of what I experienced as a living encounter with God in the course of my life.

    And BTW, it is the centrality of thinking worldviewishly that I found to be key. Starting with a light-bulb moment when I realised that reason, warrant and belief are inextricably intertwined in a context that forces us back to recognising that infinite regress is absurd and circularity pointless so we face finitude, fallibility and finitely remote first plausibles sustained on comparative difficulties.

    Yes, a tenable worldview is a reasonable faith, resting on a finitely remote faith-point. Yes, yardstick self evident truths are involved, grand inferences to best explanation are involved. Accepting testimony of our senses and common sense are involved. And more.

    KF

  27. 27
    kairosfocus says:

    DS, I was there, looking at the reflected light from the floor where a torso was supposed to be lying. That is where the 10 cm space was that didn’t ought to be there. I saw hands droop and head loll back, utterly limp. I know what would have happened if that had got out of hand. I saw the obvious pinning down. My issue is that adequate report should move us, and if it does not that is not a good sign. Neither you nor I will ever be in position to access most of history or most observations behind science etc. If you want to call it partial levitation, fine, it is what obviously should not happen by the ordinary common sense course of the world. And knowing the price tag for that situation, I don’t think any sensible person will want to demand access at close hand. So, pardon if I responded to the issues that your words suggest. KF

  28. 28
    daveS says:

    KF,

    I don’t seriously doubt that you are accurately describing what you perceived. But even the most careful observer can be tricked by his senses, so I can only file your account (as well as Dr Torley’s) in the “interesting” folder.

    And knowing the price tag for that situation, I don’t think any sensible person will want to demand access at close hand.

    I would certainly be interested in witnessing such an event firsthand, and I consider myself a reasonably sensible person. I am curious about the world, and it seems like direct observation is the only way to learn about these occurrences. If I am in error in regarding them as quite incredible, then I want to know.

  29. 29
    sean samis says:

    Dr JDD @16:

    The historical evidence that verifies the Bible is overwhelming. It is frankly embarrassing how much evidence there is for this book compared to the next best historical documents in terms of quantity and quality of verifiable historical facts.

    The evidence purporting to “verify” the Bible tends to be part of the bible itself. Extrabiblical evidence only verifies some historical context that has no particular doctrinal weight. Extrabiblical evidence of miracles are simply absent.

    Therefore if you are going to use that line, you essentially have to dismiss or call into question all historic evidence pre-1600 say as questionable and unverifiable.

    There can be no valid evidence of the bible’s validity that is post-200 AD. By the year 200, all witnesses to Jesus’s activities were likely dead. By 1000 AD, all anyone could do is repeat stories they heard.

    The number of times people have mocked the Bible for mentioning historic figures (such as Herrod, King David, Solomon, the Canaanites – I could go on) they didn’t have evidence for yet later clear strong archeology call evidence completely backed up is almost countless.

    The bible was not written in a vacuum. I’m sure some of these characters existed; I’d be surprised if none did. But the existence of Herod, David, etc. does not validate stories of miracles. Take away those miracles and the bible is just an old history.

    There is no archeological evidence of any reported miracle.

    …I suspect you will only listen to the similarly biased “evidence” that strives to support the notion that the Bible is not that accurate.

    I will entertain any evidence you can produce, but I will not certify its authenticity, nor its value sight-unseen. Just because you say something is evidence is not enough. There’s this thing in the Bible about being warry of False Prophets.

    That is what your father wants for you though.

    So says you, but not any god. If God wants me to believe something or do something, I’m in the phone book.

    sean s.

  30. 30
    sean samis says:

    Box @21:

    Honesty compels me to say that I can fully relate to the “hyperskeptical” on this forum. … I know it sounds absurd, but I do have problems believing it myself. That hasn’t changed. What is also true that I have been as accurate and honest as possible when I tell the story …

    Box’s comment is quite accurate. The problem with accounts of miracles is that unless you were there, all you can do is choose whether to trust the witnesses. I have never witnessed any miracle, and I have been duped by enough magicians to know I can be duped, and that others can be too. So I remain skeptical.

    That’s why I have refrained from commenting on miracles reported on this thread. I wasn’t there to witness them, and I withhold my unthinking trust of the witnesses.

    I cannot say there are no miracles; I can say I’ve never been persuaded to believe any reports of them. There’s this thing in the Bible about being wary of False Prophets.

    sean s.

  31. 31
    kairosfocus says:

    DS,

    That we can in principle in the abstract be tricked does not vitiate the general reliability of our senses.

    To pop up this old jack in the box when convenient does not help.

    In the relevant case, BTW, there were multiple witnesses.

    KF

    PS: What people were going through no good person would wish on anyone.

  32. 32
    kairosfocus says:

    SS, you obviously have decided to dismiss or even perhaps have never soberly considered the relevant bodies of evidence, textual, historical, archaeological etc with a due sense of what provides reasonable warrant. FYI, sources can be cross checked enough to give them some validity. Once that is done, and this is routine, we have every right to learn from such. But then, you are part of a circle that runs to difficulties with self-evident first principles. KF

  33. 33
    EvilSnack says:

    Moreover, the 3-Dimensional/Photographic Negative image on the Shroud was certainly not created by merely placing the shroud ‘on a dead guy’

    And no such image as we see in the shroud is consistent with any coherent rendering of John 19:40. A complete human figure simply could not appear on cloths that are wrapped around a person, as is described in that verse.

    I’m sure you can cite authorities who claim otherwise, but there really is no getting around this.

  34. 34
    bornagain77 says:

    And cite I will,,, page 7 on the following site:

    A Clean Cloth What Greek Word Usage Tells Us about the Burial Wrappings of Jesus
    Diana Fulbright Director of Research, Shroud of Turin Center
    http://www.shroud.com/pdfs/n62part7.pdf

    Apparently the text is not as clear cut as you would like to imply. Moreover, I already cited evidence that the Shroud was sewn from two pieces of cloth that had been separated, thus giving my position of authenticity leeway for ‘strips’,,, not to mention the separate face cloth that I also already mentioned.

    Funny, you want to be absolutely inerrant on your preferred ‘many strips’ interpretation of the Biblical text, (a ‘many strips’ interpretation which is known to be out of sync with the known burial custom of the Jews in the first century by the way), an a priori interpretation which I find to be very biased, and yet the Shroud itself, i.e. the physical object itself that can be examined up-close, and personal, in detail, is what is screaming for a miraculous explanation.

    Go figure. It is ironic that this line of debate you are using is all too reminiscent of my many debates with atheists on UD where they ignore the evidence in question and try to focus on some trivial detail that is irrelevant to the main question at hand.

    Myself, as I do in my debates with atheists, I will ignore the irrelevancy and simply follow the evidence where it leads, (especially considering how well my bases are covered on the Biblical text in question), and rightly hold that the Shroud of Turin is authentic.

  35. 35
    kairosfocus says:

    BA and EvS: Pardon, but while interesting I suspect this is a bit increasingly tangential. Perhaps enough has been exchanged so that people can decide for themselves on Shroud issues. If you wish to have a shroud debate, maybe an open thread can be set up. Do, let me know. KF

  36. 36
    daveS says:

    KF,

    From the Baker’s Dozen thread:

    Given the sort of things that have emerged in recent weeks right here at UD, of skeptics being unwilling to acknowledge even self-evident first truths of reason or reckon soberly with eyewitness testimony and record that is fair on face and of reasonable chain of custody/repository, that is even more of a warning sign.

    I’m assuming you’re referring in part to this thread.

    Let me ask you: What do you think I should do with your eyewitness account? Should I conclude that a genuine levitation probably occurred?

    Now let’s reverse the roles. If I told you about an incident that I observed, would you also believe it probably occurred just as I described? Even if there was no hard evidence, and even if you strongly suspected beforehand that such incidents simply do not occur in the world?

  37. 37
    kairosfocus says:

    DS, I am primarily referring to a series of threads over some weeks now in which fundamental resistance to first principles emerged. Further, to a pattern over years of inappropriate rejection of the basic historicity of Jesus of Nazareth and linked eyewitness lifetime record. As I actually linked on. When it comes to the thread above, there is some overlap but not a main focus. My concern here is that the pattern of objections and well that’s not credible reflects a much wider, deeper breakdown of reasonableness. In general, I would be inclined to accept reasonable testimony; e.g. I would doubt a claim to have created a square circle. I think you need to ask yourself whether a prioris are putting you in the position where no possible reasonable evidence could overturn them. Note my Jack in the box remark above. If one is a priori convinced the supernatural does not exist that can invite circularity, where the matter is one of empirical evidence and any reasonable person must know that millions claim to have had supernatural experience, especially of God and of life transformation through the gospel; which has even had some very positive impacts on world history, e.g. William Wilberforce, Gen Booth of the Salvation Army, etc etc. I think it can be shown that if the existence of God is even possible, miracles are a reasonable expectation, though in this case we are not talking of positive supernatural manifestation; save in setting a victim free. KF

  38. 38
    kairosfocus says:

    PS 1: I should add that given that God as an Eternal self-sufficient being would be a serious candidate necessary being, either he is impossible as a square circle is impossible, or he is actual. That is a serious challenge for any species of atheism that holds that they KNOW God is not, and also for the subtler versions that insinuate that they are in position to make a responsible decision and hold that they have no belief in God’s existence.

    PS 2: If so many people are delusional about knowing God as has been suggested or even treated as a given, the matter would raise serious questions about human rationality in general, as do assertions or assumptions of radical skepticism.

    PS 3: On the demonic, there is abundant empirical testimony and I even have some close hand experiences, as do many many others. Indeed medical or nursing people in this part of the world often know when what is needed is a good parson or priest, not medication. But at foundation, is that I start from the prophesied fulfilled resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth, with 500+ witnesses. If he took the demonic seriously [above and beyond silly tomfoolery], so will I. And also the broader issue of miracles. Indeed, I wonder if objectors understand as Newton did, that induction cannot rule out rare exceptional cases, including miracles starting with creation. And by definition of being extraordinary miracles will be rare.

  39. 39
    daveS says:

    KF,

    I take it that by “reasonable” you mean “not logically impossible”. I’m also not 100% clear on what you mean by “accept”. However:

    1) Should I conclude, based on your testimony, that a genuine levitation probably occurred?

    2) If I claimed to have witnessed an incident which was not logically impossible, would you also conclude that it probably happened?

  40. 40
    kairosfocus says:

    DS, it is not my sayso in vacuo. Linked, once I have for cause found someone a responsible person of good character and to be truthful, I would be inclined to accept their affirmation absent very good reason to reject. And I think any responsible person will agree with that as the opposite attitude utterly corrodes society. Beyond that I think the burden of intellectual virtues and responsibilities is backways here. I am not trying to convince you in face of any and all objections, I know what I and others experienced, firsthand. My interest is to see how today’s skepticism is a virtue mentality is affecting ability to address issues. And you had better believe that the cases of resistance to first principles and the attitude to what has been exposed about abortion, are getting my attention bigtime. Last, I make a big distinction between being a careful, prudent thinker and becoming fashionably hyperskeptical. KF

  41. 41
    sean samis says:

    kairosfocus:

    @32:

    …you obviously have decided to dismiss or even perhaps have never soberly considered the relevant bodies of evidence, textual, historical, archaeological etc with a due sense of what provides reasonable warrant.

    I have and I just come to the conclusion that, if this evidence were presented for any other topic, it would be declared insufficient. But because it is presented to support biblical claims, believers lower their standards because they need to.

    @37:

    I think you need to ask yourself whether a prioris are putting you in the position where no possible reasonable evidence could overturn them. … If one is a priori convinced the supernatural does not exist that can invite circularity, where the matter is one of empirical evidence and any reasonable person must know that millions claim to have had supernatural experience…

    I think this is a problem you have; I doubt any reasonable evidence could overturn your position.

    If one is, a priori convinced the supernatural exists, that can invite circularity. Where the matter is one of empirical evidence, any reasonable person must know that claims by millions to have had supernatural experiences are not conclusive because their “experiences” are of radically different supernaturalisms.

    @38:

    … either [God] is impossible as a square circle is impossible, or he is actual.

    Please justify this either/or choice. Any deity can be a possibility which is not known or cannot be certainly known. The choice is not as stark as you want it to be.

    If so many people are delusional about knowing God as has been suggested or even treated as a given, the matter would raise serious questions about human rationality in general,…

    You would not be the first person to question the rationality of most humans; economists do it quite frequently. All humans are capable of reason, but not all humans do so frequently, many are taught from early on to not be reasonable; many find the conclusions of reason intolerable.

    …induction cannot rule out rare exceptional cases, including miracles starting with creation. And by definition of being extraordinary miracles will be rare.

    This is true, but this still leaves miracles in a class of unverifiable events; if one does not personally witness the event, one cannot reasonably say “it happened”.

    @40:

    I would be inclined to accept their affirmation absent very good reason to reject. And I think any responsible person will agree with that as the opposite attitude utterly corrodes society. …

    A reasonable person should not declare such reports false, but they should not declare them true either. A reasonable person should be honest and say they don’t have sufficient evidence to form an opinion about such claims.

    …I make a big distinction between being a careful, prudent thinker and becoming fashionably hyperskeptical.

    Unfortunately, it is my experience that the distinction you make is very tiny to non-existent. I have seen you refer to me and others as “hyperskeptical” simply because we were being careful and prudent.

    sean s.

  42. 42
    kairosfocus says:

    SS,

    I simply note that if your attitude is that the first century eyewitness lifetime record put out at huge sacrifice by martyr-apostles and handed down as historically anchored truth is insufficient to ground basic historicity of Jesus, you have disqualified yourself from serious discussion.

    I can understand someone who concludes that a certain C1 carpenter and preacher from Galilee got into trouble with the Jerusalem authorities and paid the price of his life. A common enough matter. I could understand if you accepted that his followers went out and preached in his name, convinced he broke the power of death. I can understand taking the problematic view that they suffered some form of collective, hallucinatory delusion, even though that is quite problematic.

    But, the blanket sweeping away you suggest simply does not wash.

    Your problem, patently, is not being careful and prudent, it is that the substance of the history is so antithetical to your worldview preferences that you have selectively hyperskeptically dismissed it.

    This is closely parallel to the attitude shown by those of the side you support who spent weeks here recently trying to dismiss and resist self-evident truth.

    As some of those truths are literally the foundation of reason, we can safely draw our conclusions as to what we are dealing with.

    And your attempted turnabout projection simply fails.

    The bottomline is, that as of the recent exchange I have been forced to the reluctant conclusion that I am dealing with entrenched ideology rather than reasoned discussion.

    I will simply invite the more open inquirer to consider the 101 here:

    http://nicenesystheol.blogspot.....l#u1_grnds

    KF

    PS: If you wish to object, kindly begin with the discussion of the minimal facts.

  43. 43
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: If you took a look at discussions over recent times at UD, you would see that in 38 I am pointing out the nature of a serious necessary being candidate. Something like a flying spaghetti monster is not a serious candidate, as made of components etc. Any serious candidate necessary being would either be impossible or else actual, the latter implying it is a substructure of any possible world. And as non-being has no causal powers were there ever utter nothing such would forever obtain, so that there is a world implies a necessary being root of reality, the issue is candidates. Cf my discussion here earlier today where I draw it out in a bit more detail: http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-581884 . . . a comment that also responds to you. KF

  44. 44
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N2: I note that a prudent, careful thinker will respect first principles and will exert reasonable, appropriate and consistent standards of warrant for cases, acting as well on the assumption of charity. A good test is, can you acknowledge that error exists is not just general opinion or empirically credible but undeniably and self evidently so . . . thus grounding that self evident, knowable truth and knowledge exist. That you apparently do not perceive a sharp difference between that and hyperskepticism, whether global (= we know we cannot know anything) or selective (applying double-standards of warrant that give cover for rejecting what one is inclined not to accept), speaks volumes. KF

  45. 45
    daveS says:

    KF,

    Your problem, patently, is not being careful and prudent, it is that the substance of the history is so antithetical to your worldview preferences that you have selectively hyperskeptically dismissed it.

    This is closely parallel to the attitude shown by those of the side you support who spent weeks here recently trying to dismiss and resist self-evident truth.

    As some of those truths are literally the foundation of reason, we can safely draw our conclusions as to what we are dealing with.

    There is certainly a lot of psychologizing and well-poisoning going on here.

    I expect that even some of your ID colleagues find sean samis’ stance quite appropriate.

  46. 46
    kairosfocus says:

    DS, I am sorry, but here you have missed the mark. The issue on the table for the moment is the basic historical existence of a carpenter and itinerant preacher from Nazareth, in a further context of attempted dismissal of prime source documents and serious weight of argument. (Cf. 101 here, there is much more, some little of it linked.) To conclude, on warrant — where, on fair comment, were any other relevant individual involved the sort of dismissiveness of person and sources we so commonly see simply would not be there . . . — that there is inappropriate selectively hyperskeptical dismissiveness is not empty well poisoning or silly psychologising. In fact there is good reason to hold that the basic historicity of the world’s most famous carpenter and eyewitness lifetime credible record with good chain of custody are not on trial, we are in our response to that weight of evidence. The sad fact is, that ever so many in our day unfortunately fail the test; fail it because of an ideological problem, in the end. Where also, it is now common among the same circles to dismiss first principles of reason, starting with distinct identity. Such issues and evident patterns are not healthy signs. KF

    PS: Let me also note also that to hold studious doubt without good reason when a person of known good character speaks on matters they would reasonably know about, bespeaks a basic problem. Indeed, I suggest that per the Kant Categorical Imperative that such a hermeneutic of suspicion, if it were to become the standard in the community, would lead to its collapse.

  47. 47
    daveS says:

    KF,

    If your post #42 was not referring at all to the levitation incidences, then I withdraw the second sentence of my post #45.

    However you continue to imply that our reservations regarding those incidents indicate a defect in us, which I contend is empty well-poisoning and silly psychologizing, for rhetorical purposes of course.

    BTW, do you think it is possible that someday we might see scientific evidence of levitation?

  48. 48
    kairosfocus says:

    DS, I think we are talking to different contexts now . . . and 42 is on the world’s most famous carpenter. On the case I and others saw recently, I speak to the inside/outside view and the issue of adequate warrant for observed fact. That is to history in effect, and I note that what has surfaced is evidentialism joined to selective skepticism, where it seems that the a prioris on what is possible drive the response to evidence. The hazard being, locking out reasonable evidence on an a priori that begs the question. That, is not epistemically safe. KF

  49. 49
    sean samis says:

    kairosfocus @42:

    I simply note … But, the blanket sweeping away you suggest simply does not wash.

    I do no such thing; your emotions are blinding you.

    The person Jesus, a First-Century Judean carpenter could well have existed and preached at length; his crucifixion is entirely plausible, and the persistence of his followers quite possible.

    The only part I have to remain skeptical of is references to miracles. They are reported but not verifiable. I do not say these reports are false, only unreliable.

    Your problem, patently, is not being careful and prudent, it is that the substance of the history is so antithetical to your worldview preferences that you have selectively hyperskeptically dismissed it.

    You neatly describe yourself; it’s not uncommon for someone to see in their adversary what they fear to find in themselves. I dismiss nothing, I just reserve assent. That’s a very different thing.

    This is closely parallel to the attitude shown by those of the side you support who spent weeks here recently trying to dismiss and resist self-evident truth.

    Whatever the New Testament story is, it is not self-evident.

    @44:

    I note that a prudent, careful thinker will respect first principles and will exert reasonable, appropriate and consistent standards of warrant for cases, acting as well on the assumption of charity.

    Agreed. But a careful and prudent thinker will not just accept assertions by you as facts; they will consider and critique them as they think they must.

    A good test is, can you acknowledge that error exists is not just general opinion or empirically credible but undeniably and self evidently so . . .

    Of course error exists.

    …thus grounding that self evident, knowable truth and knowledge exist.

    Self-evident, knowable truth exist; as does knowledge.

    That you apparently do not perceive a sharp difference between that and hyperskepticism, whether global (= we know we cannot know anything)…

    See, here is how I know your hostility blinds you: I have never written that we cannot know anything. Quite the contrary, we can know things. But your hatred has concealed what I’ve written from you. You are angry at me for things I have never said. What happened to that “assumption of charity” you wrote about earlier?

    …or selective (applying double-standards of warrant that give cover for rejecting what one is inclined not to accept), speaks volumes.

    I apply the same rational standards to every proposition. But again, your hostility blinds you.

    sean s.

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