Intelligent Design

On Why Liars Lie

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In a previous post, I exposed yet another of eigenstate’s outrageous lies.  Then I asked:

The real question is what motivates him to engage in such insane denials? I have to admit that I am utterly flummoxed by it. He knows he is lying. I know he is lying. Everyone else who reads his comment knows he is lying. What in the world motivates such outrageous conduct? If I did not see it myself I would not believe it.

Commenter Charles replies:

He can’t help himself. It has become his nature. I have watched liars lie for years, and I have noted their inability to admit even the simplest of truths. I have observed their self-destructive behavior (as a consequence of losing the trust and charity essential in routine communication and cooperation) over matters both mundane and mission-critical.

This fellow suggests a mechanism for something I have suspected for years:

Dishonesty reduces applied intelligence: re-wires the brain

What I am suggesting is that, although the fundamental efficiency of neural processing is an hereditary characteristic which is robust to environmental differences and changes (short of something like destructive brain pathology – encephalitis, neurotoxin, head injury, dementia etc) – habitual dishonesty (such as is mainstream among the modern intellectual elite) will generate brain changes, and a long-lasting (although probably, eventually, reversible) pathology in applied intelligence – such that what ought to be simple and obvious inferential reasoning becomes impossible.

 

I would add impossible not only in communication with others but equally impossible when alone and merely analyzing (rationalizing) information they find disagreeable.

UPDATE:

After observing Carpathian’s hi-jinks in the comment thread to this post, Charles adds:

Carpathian demonstrates the corollary, why liars lie badly.

A consequence of chronic, pathological intellectual dishonesty is a narrowing of ones sphere of influence to other liars. A further consequence of which is the positive reinforcement from other liars that their lies are credible and compelling. But when those lies are trotted out to an informed and experienced audience, those same lies don’t pass muster and are recognized as vapid and vacuous.

 

164 Replies to “On Why Liars Lie

  1. 1
    jerry says:

    I have always said that the most interesting part of the evolution debate is the behavior of those who defend Darwinian or naturalistic processes. Lies are just part of the behavior. We have seen many other tactics they use in their comments.

    It all comes down to not giving an inch. Otherwise maybe their opponents are right on something and if they are right on something they maybe right on much more. That they cannot accept.

    It is not just in evolution that these tactics take place. It is most frequently seen in politics or religion. Same behavior. Never give an inch.

    I would look at who they do not like for various reasons. It is hard to admit the truth to those you do not like.

  2. 2
    asauber says:

    For some “looking good in front of their peers” is their god. And if the internet makes them look “bigger”, then that’s even better.

    Lies, truth, noise, poetry… what’s the difference? Post a long comment and pat yourself on the back. Its a desire for attention and making an illusory icon of themselves. Sad.

    A person’s value does not derive from their online persona.

    Andrew

  3. 3
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    The real question is what motivates him to engage in such insane denials? I have to admit that I am utterly flummoxed by it. He knows he is lying. I know he is lying. Everyone else who reads his comment knows he is lying. What in the world motivates such outrageous conduct? If I did not see it myself I would not believe it.

    But I see that behavior in Christians.

    People lie to themselves every day that the “son of God” gave his life to save the souls of humans.

    Clearly, if Jesus knew he was going to be resurrected in three days, he did not sacrifice his life since he knew his existence would continue in whatever way he saw fit.

    It is an insane denial of logic to actually believe in this myth, but it serves a purpose to those who believe in it because it leads to social binding.

  4. 4
    Barry Arrington says:

    Carpathian,

    The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history. Your response to all of the evidence is to stamp your foot and call it a myth. While it is typical of your ilk, it is hardly a satisfying, or even rational, response. Evidence, Carpathian, is what I want from you. Your bare unsupported, dogmatic assertions establish nothing whatsoever.

    You state that the following is a lie: “people lie to themselves every day that the “son of God” gave his life” You need to understand that the word “lie” does not mean “statement supported by massive evidence but which Carpathian nevertheless refuses to believe.”

    Finally, your assertion that to die and be resurrected is the same as never to have died at all is plain nonsense. If my house is green, and then I paint it white, and then I paint it green again, was it never white? According to your logic it never was, which is absurd.

  5. 5
    asauber says:

    “But I see that behavior in Christians.”

    Christians are sinners just like everyone else.

    “People lie to themselves every day that the “son of God” gave his life to save the souls of humans.”

    You don’t know it’s a lie.

    “Clearly, if Jesus knew he was going to be resurrected in three days, he did not sacrifice his life since he knew his existence would continue in whatever way he saw fit.”

    Of course He sacrificed His life. Do you think crucifixion is painless? Don’t you think your own children giving you up and loving them anyway doesn’t require sacrifice?

    This line of argument from Carp clearly indicates he simply is in opposition to Christianity, and his thinking goes from there.

    Andrew

  6. 6
    Barry Arrington says:

    Andrew,

    Carpathian is engaging in a hoary leftist tradition: False assertions of equivalence. I am old enough to remember how during the Cold War leftists would insist on the moral equivalence of the United States and the Soviet Union. That such assertions were manifestly absurd did not seem to faze them then. It does not faze them now.

  7. 7
    Carpathian says:

    asauber:

    Of course He sacrificed His life. Do you think crucifixion is painless? Don’t you think your own children giving you up and loving them anyway doesn’t require sacrifice?

    There are human beings who have put themselves through great agony to save the lives of family, friends or fellow soldiers and none had the guarantee of resurrection.

    Sacrificing what you know and love for an unknown future is a far greater sacrifice than continuing your existence as a god.

    If you put an ad in the paper that read, “Wanted: Someone who would be willing to be crucified and then resurrected three days later to rule the universe as the right-hand of God”, you would have a line of applicants that stretched across the US.

  8. 8
    asauber says:

    Barry,

    Yes. And Carp has moved oh so deftly from the Why Do People Lie question to Christians Are Liars Too. Great opinion, but doesn’t address the question.

    Andrew

  9. 9
    asauber says:

    “Sacrificing what you know and love for an unknown future is a far greater sacrifice”

    Carp,

    So now you’ve moved from Not A Sacrifice to Not Enough Of A Sacrifice?

    Andrew

  10. 10
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    Finally, your assertion that to die and be resurrected is the same as never to have died at all is plain nonsense. If my house is green, and then I paint it white, and then I paint it green again, was it never white? According to your logic it never was, which is absurd.

    That is an absurd analogy.

    A better one would be blowing up a green house and then magically see it re-assemble itself into a white one.

  11. 11
    Carpathian says:

    asauber:

    “Sacrificing what you know and love for an unknown future is a far greater sacrifice”

    Carp,

    So now you’ve moved from Not A Sacrifice to Not Enough Of A Sacrifice?

    Andrew

    Alright, I’ll rate the sacrifice on a scale of 0-9:

    1) Soldier sacrificing himself for his fellow soldiers – 9.

    2) Being crucified and after three days, being resurrected to rule the universe – 0.

    9 is far greater than 0.

  12. 12
    Barry Arrington says:

    Carpathian,

    A better one would be blowing up a green house and then magically see it re-assemble itself into a white one.

    OK. We’ll use this analogy. If a house is blown up and then reassembled into a house again, does that mean it was never blown up? Under your logic it would, which is absurd.

    I expect you will have some response to even this. But before you post it let me implore you to think about this: The ability to keep typing is not the same as the ability to make a rational argument. You really need to ponder on that, because based on my observations of you over the years, I am not sure you understand it.

  13. 13
    Carpathian says:

    asauber:

    Yes. And Carp has moved oh so deftly from the Why Do People Lie question to Christians Are Liars Too. Great opinion, but doesn’t address the question.

    The topic is why liars lie and I gave an example.

    I also said why.

    Please read it again:

    It is an insane denial of logic to actually believe in this myth, but it serves a purpose to those who believe in it because it leads to social binding.

  14. 14
    asauber says:

    “but it serves a purpose to those who believe in it because it leads to social binding”

    OK. Does this apply to you and whatever group you associate yourself with?

    Andrew

  15. 15
    Barry Arrington says:

    Carpathian,

    The topic is why liars lie and I gave an example.

    No, actually, you didn’t. I told you before that the word “lie” does not mean “statement supported by massive evidence but which Carpathian nevertheless refuses to believe.”

    Apparently it did not sink in. Maybe you should write it down.

  16. 16
    Barry Arrington says:

    Carpathian,

    It is an insane denial of logic to actually believe in this myth

    And this seems to have slipped by you as well:

    The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history. Your response to all of the evidence is to stamp your foot and call it a myth. While it is typical of your ilk, it is hardly a satisfying, or even rational, response. Evidence, Carpathian, is what I want from you. Your bare unsupported, dogmatic assertions establish nothing whatsoever.

  17. 17
    Barry Arrington says:

    Carpathian has succeeded in hijacking the thread from its original purpose though. If he has a comment regarding why eigenstate continually tells outrageous lies, he is free to post it. False claims of equivalence do not count as such.

  18. 18
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    OK. We’ll use this analogy. If a house is blown up and then reassembled into a house again, does that mean it was never blown up? Under your logic it would, which is absurd.

    That was my whole point.

    If the house is blown up and re-assembles itself, the house has not lost it’s function or future.

    Jesus on the other hand, was a human who was “blown up” and “re-assembled” as a god.

    Sort of like blowing up a garden shed in your backyard and seeing it re-assemble itself into a 60,000 sq ft mansion.

    So with Jesus, no sacrifice.

    UDEditors: Yeah, forsaking your Godhood, entering into creation as a man, allowing yourself to be beaten nearly to death and nailed to a cross, and then, while you are on the cross, bearing the sins of the entire human race from the beginning of time to the end of time, all the while having the power to stop it at any instant, is no sort of sacrifice at all.

  19. 19
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    If he has a comment regarding why eigenstate continually tells outrageous lies, he is free to post it.

    Alright.

    I believe eigenstate doesn’t lie.

    I believe that my experience in life suggests that when one side of a debate starts to lose, they start attacking the messengers instead of the message.

    I believe this has happened with IDists as their arguments are the first to change into emotional statements and posts like this one.

  20. 20
    DennisM says:

    From Carpathian:

    Clearly, if Jesus knew he was going to be resurrected in three days, he did not sacrifice his life since he knew his existence would continue in whatever way he saw fit.”

    Even most Christians do not understand what Jesus did, so I don’t blame you for thinking you found a logical contradiction in Christian faith.

    Jesus knew he was going to be resurrected in the same way I know I will be if I trust him for my future. He believed the scriptures that described his life and mission. However, he did NOT have the kind of certainty you think he did. He only had faith and trust in his heavenly Father not to leave him in the grave. Based on that, and on the kind of love you grant to humans who give their lives to save others, Jesus gave his life to save us who would otherwise be lost forever. It’s significant that even if the result might be that Jesus himself would die forever, he was willing to do it for the people he loved.

    But it wasn’t just the physical death he experienced. He doesn’t save us from that. What he saves us from is called in the Bible “the second death”. It’s the one that is accompanied by anguish and despair in the knowledge that one is dying apart from God and will be gone forever. That anguish is what Jesus experienced while dying on the cross, the sense of dying and being lost forever. He had no guarantee at that time of coming back, except that the ancient writings said he would.

    Perhaps you may think of this, and reconsider your opinion of Jesus and Christian faith.

  21. 21
    asauber says:

    “I believe eigenstate doesn’t lie.”

    Indeed. A statement of faith. Even certainty?

    How religious of you, Carp.

    Andrew

  22. 22
    Barry Arrington says:

    Dennis, I have gavelled Carpathian’s attempt to hijack this thread. The topic is “why does eigenstate feel compelled to lie”?

  23. 23
    Barry Arrington says:

    Carpathian,

    I believe eigenstate doesn’t lie.

    OK. Consider the following two statements.

    LH1: “I cannot . . . be . . . certain of anything”

    LH2: “the proposition is not fallible”

    In the first statement LH says he cannot be certain about anything. In the second statement he asserts that a proposition is not fallible, i.e. “infallible.” “Infallible,” of course, means “unfailing in effectiveness or operation; certain.” In other words, in the second statement LH is saying that he is certain the proposition must be true.

    Saying one cannot be certain of anything is the exact opposite of asserting that one is certain that a particular proposition is true. Yet, eigenstate, in a misguided attempt to save his failed argument, asserts the two statements mean the same thing. This is plainly a lie, as anyone can see.

    Now, if you are true to form, you will join with eigenstate in his insane denial. But if you break with your habit and admit the plainly obvious truth of the matter, you will have to admit that eigenstate is a liar. And that would bring us back to “why does eigenstate do it?”

    I believe that my experience in life suggests that when one side of a debate starts to lose, they start attacking the messengers instead of the message.

    In my experience, materialists such of yourself seek to win by engaging in the insane denial tactic, and when someone points out that they are engaging in the insane denial tactic they attack that person as intolerant or hostile.

  24. 24
    DennisM says:

    From Carpathian:

    Jesus on the other hand, was a human who was “blown up” and “re-assembled” as a god.

    First, Jesus was human AND God on earth. That is a fundamental concept presented in the Bible but not explained, probably because it cannot be explained. The Creator somehow put himself into our human family.

    Second, Jesus has not “re-assembled” into something he wasn’t while on earth. He remains a human being, but temporarily absent from us. If you could stand in front of him now you would still see a human being. He became a human being permanently when he came to earth. That is part of the whole “plan of salvation” you may have heard about from Christians.

    You are criticizing things you don’t understand.

  25. 25
    Carpathian says:

    DennisM:

    He had no guarantee at that time of coming back, except that the ancient writings said he would.

    Perhaps you may think of this, and reconsider your opinion of Jesus and Christian faith.

    I appreciate the reply!

  26. 26
    DennisM says:

    Barry:

    The topic is “why does eigenstate feel compelled to lie”?

    Sorry for the extra post. Internet delays. Backing off now.

  27. 27
    Barry Arrington says:

    Thank you Dennis. I understand and appreciate your concern for Carpathian’s soul, even if he himself has none.

  28. 28
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    OK. Consider the following two statements.

    LH1: “I cannot . . . be . . . certain of anything”

    LH2: “the proposition is not fallible”

    If you are talking about whether “A=A”, it cannot be wrong since it is correct in syntax.

    Any human being is fallible, but that statement does not leave any human a choice to make.

    As soon as you try to use that construct to solve problems however, human fallibility enters the picture.

  29. 29
    Mung says:

    Carpathian: But I see that behavior in Christians.

    So? Do you think it is objectively bad, and why?

  30. 30
    Barry Arrington says:

    Barry @ 23:

    Now, if you are true to form, you will join with eigenstate in his insane denial. But if you break with your habit and admit the plainly obvious truth of the matter, you will have to admit that eigenstate is a liar. And that would bring us back to “why does eigenstate do it?”

    Carpathian @ 28:

    If you are talking about whether “A=A”, it cannot be wrong since it is correct in syntax.

    Good one Carp! You caught me. I predicted you would join eigenstate’s lie, and you certainly did not. But I totally neglected to include among my prediction of possible responses another tried and true form of deceit — pretending we were talking about something else and responding to that.

    You said that eigenstate does not lie. I demonstrated one of eigenstate’s lies. You responded not be admitting you were wrong, but by trying to change the subject. You and eigenstate are very much alike in that you are both very nearly shameless.

    We have been asking the question about eigenstate. I will ask it about you instead. Why do you do it? I know you are being deceitful. You know you are being deceitful. Everyone reading this thread knows you are being deceitful. Carp, the whole reason for being deceitful is to, you know, actually deceive someone. Yet you make a run at it even when you know you have no hope of succeeding. Why? Why do you do it? It is utterly senseless. Please explain that to me.

  31. 31
    Andre says:

    Hoe did the conversation go from Einsgate is a liar to Jesus is a myth? The absolute anger towards Christianity is now on the table. Been there done that hated God so much for 34 years I convinced myself He is a myth. Boy was I wrong. And if you ask me other than my personal experience why I deem Christianity true my answer is a simple one.

    The Bible makes it clear in heaven there will be no sex. You just don’t say something like that to a man unless it’s true.

  32. 32
    Andre says:

    Carpathian

    I want to tell you a story,

    If Darwinian evolution is true then homosexuality is a defect. You see homosexuality does not contribute to the fitness of any populations and in nature anything with a defect is discarded or removed.

    If Christianity is true then homosexuality makes you just a sinner. Since I’m also a sinner I resonate with sinfulness but being sinful does have a path to redemption, nature however does not.

  33. 33
    Charles says:

    Carpathian demonstrates the corollary, why liars lie badly.

    A consequence of chronic, pathological intellectual dishonesty is a narrowing of ones sphere of influence to other liars. A further consequence of which is the positive reinforcement from other liars that their lies are credible and compelling. But when those lies are trotted out to an informed and experienced audience, those same lies don’t pass muster and are recognized as vapid and vacuous.

    In terms the lying liar can comprehend: When a child is caught by his mother standing next to the cookie jar with crumbs on his lips and chocolate on his finger tips, the child lies “the dog ate them” because that lie is plausible to both the child himself and to his friends (whence he heard it). But unlike the child and his friends, the mother is experienced in such lies and childish ignorance, and sees the evidence of cookie crumbs on lips and chocolate on fingertips, plus knows that dogs don’t remove cookie jar lids and put them back (all evidenciary details the child overlooks having relied on his friends “wisdom”).

    But the child, in his ignorance and inexperience, thinks his mother is fooled because his friends fooled him with the same lie.

  34. 34
    Barry Arrington says:

    Andre, thank your for your contribution, but I have gavelled Carp’s attempt to hijack the thread (one which you picked up on).

  35. 35
    Andre says:

    I’LL step back Barry…

  36. 36
    Barry Arrington says:

    Thank you. As I said to Dennis above, I understand and appreciate your concern for Carpathian’s soul, even if he himself has none

  37. 37
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    We have been asking the question about eigenstate. I will ask it about you instead. Why do you do it? I know you are being deceitful. You know you are being deceitful. Everyone reading this thread knows you are being deceitful. Carp, the whole reason for being deceitful is to, you know, actually deceive someone. Yet you make a run at it even when you know you have no hope of succeeding. Why? Why do you do it? It is utterly senseless. Please explain that to me.

    It’s easy to explain.

    The fact that I am not deceitful, yet you claim I am, is proof of one of two things; you either truly believe it but are wrong, or you don’t believe it but are saying it anyways for the purposes of this debate.

    I believe the latter.

    In every exchange that you seem to be losing, you start to focus on the debater instead of the debate.

    Why would you change your focus from a topic of debate to the debater if you felt you had the better argument?

    Clearly you must believe you are losing the debate if you change your focus to the person.

  38. 38
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    Good one Carp! You caught me. I predicted you would join eigenstate’s lie, and you certainly did not. But I totally neglected to include among my prediction of possible responses another tried and true form of deceit — pretending we were talking about something else and responding to that.

    This is another thing I’ve noticed about IDists; the inability to process multiple statements.

    In computer logic, gates don’t come with just pairs of inputs but might have eight.

    That means eight things could all be true at the same time.

    IDists however seem to have an inability to cope with this concept.

    Over and over I’ve seen IDists claim that 1 “boolean truth” negates another when clearly this is not the case.

    In one race, a driver may lose the race but win the championship in that same race due to points standings.

    This means the driver is both a loser and a winner at the same time.

    That form of multiple “boolean truth” logic seems to be too difficult for IDists to handle.

  39. 39
    Barry Arrington says:

    In 37 Carpathian demonstrates the truth of Robert L. Kocher insane denial essay:

    It has become common for people who routinely engage in chronic psychotic levels of denial to consider themselves as being mental powerhouses, and to be considered by others as being mental powerhouses, because no one can break through their irrationality. This is often supported by a self-referencing congratulatory inner voice which says, “(guffaw) He REALLY didn’t have an answer for that one!” And they are correct. He didn’t have an answer.

    Carpathian, your insane denial is impenetrable. You must be so proud.

  40. 40
    Barry Arrington says:

    Carpathian @ 38.

    Jaw dropping. He points to the fact that I did not take into account that there are multiple ways he could have attempted to deceive us. And then he suggests that is a failure on my part. God help us.

  41. 41
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    Carpathian, your insane denial is impenetrable. You must be so proud.

    You’re projecting Barry!

    It has become common for people who routinely engage in chronic psychotic levels of denial to consider themselves as being mental powerhouses, and to be considered by others as being mental powerhouses, because no one can break through their irrationality. This is often supported by a self-referencing congratulatory inner voice which says, “(guffaw) He REALLY didn’t have an answer for that one!” And they are correct. He didn’t have an answer.

  42. 42
    Barry Arrington says:

    C @ 41.

    And now we have regressed to the tactic of the second grader on the playground: “I know you are but what am I?”

    God help us.

  43. 43
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    Carpathian @ 38.

    Jaw dropping. He points to the fact that I did not take into account that there are multiple ways he could have attempted to deceive us. And then he suggests that is a failure on my part. God help us.

    LOL!!!

    A terrible attempt at trying to “bend” the message!

    And then you do the typical thing you do, take a shot at the messenger , since you you don’t have a message that’s more powerful.

  44. 44
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    And now we have regressed to the tactic of the second grader on the playground: “I know you are but what am I?”

    It’s you who seem to be more proficient at recess than you are in the classroom.

    Stop calling people liars and use school to learn something.

    eigenstate could teach you a few things about respectful debate.

  45. 45
    Roy says:

    The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history.

    No, it is not.

    There is no photograph, audio recording, newspaper article, court transcript, diary entry, contemporary drawing/sculpture, amateur video, government report, physical trace, write-up, forensic evidence, newsreel, autobiography, signed statement, inscription, electronic document or medical record.

    There are historical events which have most of even all of the above: the JFK assassination, the Titanic disaster, the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Wright Brothers’ flight, the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Scopes trial and many, many more.

    To claim that the resurrection is reliably documented in comparison to events such as these is insane.

  46. 46
    Barry Arrington says:

    Carpathian, let us go back to eigenstate’s statement. Do you agree with him that the two statements mean the same thing?

  47. 47
    bornagain77 says:

    It is interesting that Carpathian, when called on the carpet for his incessant lying about facts in evidence, would, instead of honestly admitting that he is a pathological liar and then mending his ways accordingly, instead tried to turn the topic around to Christianity.

    “But I see that behavior in Christians.
    People lie to themselves every day that the “son of God” gave his life to save the souls of humans.”

    The reason it is interesting that Carpathian would, in a post entitled ‘Why Liars Lie’, try to focus on Christianity instead of focusing on his penchant for lying about anything and everything that remotely points to Intelligent Design, is that Jesus made some very specific claims regarding His relationship to truth.

    Specifically, Jesus said he is ‘the truth’.

    John 14:1-6
    Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

    That claim is a remarkable claim and is in stark contrast to the claims of other leading religious figures throughout history who claimed that their teachings were more important than their own person.

    i.e. Only Jesus declared his person to be even more important than his teachings:

    ‘Other than Christ, no other religious leader was foretold a thousand years before he arrived, nor was anything said about where he would be born, why he would come, how he would live, and when he would die. No other religious leader claimed to be God, or performed miracles, or rose from the dead. No other religious leader grounded his doctrine in historical facts. No other religious leader declared his person to be even more important than his teachings.’
    – StephenB – UD Blogger

    JESUS AS GOD By Ben Witherington, III
    Excerpt: But there are other indirect ways that Jesus signals who He is. For example, uniquely Jesus chooses to precede His own pronouncements with the term “amen,” a term normally used by the congregation to affirm the truthfulness of what someone else says after they say it. Not so with Jesus. He vouches for the truthfulness of His own words in advance of offering them! He does not need others to bear witness to him in order to validate the truthfulness of his words.
    http://www.4truth.net/fourtrut.....8589952873

    Thus it is interesting that Carpathian, in a post dedicated to the pathological tendency of militant atheists to lie about anything and everything that points to Intelligent Design, would, in his first post on the subject, try to focus on Christianity.

    Out of all the subjects of Intelligent Design that Carp could have focused on, such as say any evidence whatsoever contradicting the claim that he is a pathological liar when it comes to the Design inference, why would he focus on solely Christianity in particular in his first post? and why specifically on Christ’s resurrection?

    Well, I hold that it merely further validates the point of the post, namely that he can’t help himself when he lies, and I also hold that it further validates Christ’s claim the He is ‘the truth’.

    Think about it, what else would be the ultimate goal of a determined pathological liar save for vainly trying to destroy ‘the truth’? Thus his focus on Christ gives him away.

    John 8:44
    You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.

    Of note to the resurrection:

    The finding of a photographic negative image on the Shroud of Turin is still as much a mystery today as when it was first discovered by Secondo Pia in 1898.

    A short film about the first photographic negative taken of the shroud of Turin in 1898 by Secondo Pia
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tTeKu2-3hRk

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

    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

    Shroud Of Turin Is Authentic, Italian Study Suggests – December 2011
    Excerpt: Last year scientists were able to replicate marks on the cloth using highly advanced ultraviolet techniques that weren’t available 2,000 years ago — nor during the medieval times, for that matter.,,, Since the shroud and “all its facets” still cannot be replicated using today’s top-notch technology, researchers suggest it is impossible that the original image could have been created in either period.
    http://www.thegopnet.com/shrou.....ests-87037

    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

    The Center Of The Universe Is Life! – General Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, Entropy and The Shroud Of Turin – video
    http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=9FCEMJNU

    Verse:

    1 John 1:5-7
    “This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.”

  48. 48
    anthropic says:

    Roy 45 “The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history.

    No, it is not.

    There is no photograph, audio recording, newspaper article, court transcript, diary entry, contemporary drawing/sculpture, amateur video, government report, physical trace, write-up, forensic evidence, newsreel, autobiography, signed statement, inscription, electronic document or medical record.”
    ———————————————————-

    Narrative fail, Roy. Obviously, the historicity of the Resurrection was being compared to other events around the same time period. As such, it is extraordinarily well-documented, with multiple contemporaneous accounts from eyewitnesses.

    Note that the body disappeared and no one — NO ONE — was ever able to produce it, or even claim to do so. Note also that the accounts of the Resurrection and post-Resurrection appearances of Jesus were published in public when many eyewitnesses were still alive who could shoot it down if it were not true to their own experiences.

    Note, finally, that the apostles all proclaimed the Resurrection their entire lives, even to the point of martyrdom. Hard to believe this was some cooked up conspiracy.

  49. 49
    Roy says:

    Spot the difference:

    The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history.

    Narrative fail, Roy. Obviously, the historicity of the Resurrection was being compared to other events around the same time period.

    Obviously it wasn’t.

    Do you agree that Mr Arrington’s claim is, as written, ridiculous?

    Also:

    As such, it is extraordinarily well-documented, with multiple contemporaneous accounts from eyewitnesses.

    Since none of the gospels were contemporaneous with the crucifixion* and none claim to be eyewitness testimony, to which accounts are you referring?

    *the consensus seems to be that the earliest was penned more than 20 years later

  50. 50
    bornagain77 says:

    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

    “strips of linen” objection:

    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

    Verse and Music:

    John 20:3-8
    So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. Then Simon Peter, who was behind him, arrived and went into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the burial cloth that had been around Jesus’ head. The cloth was folded up by itself, separate from the linen. Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed.

    “Alive” – W,Lyrics, By Natalie Grant – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3AFpgzjRD44

  51. 51
    Mung says:

    I think liars lie for pretty much the same reason that truth tellers tell the truth. Because they want to.

  52. 52
    Mung says:

    Roy: Do you agree that Mr Arrington’s claim is, as written, ridiculous?

    No. Why should i?

  53. 53
    bornagain77 says:

    To further solidify the inference that the person of Jesus Christ is ‘the truth’ as He claimed, I submit that the Shroud of Turin provides empirical evidence for the unification of General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics (QED) into the much sought after ‘theory of everything’:

    First, Gravity was overcome in the resurrection event of Christ:

    Particle Radiation from the Body – July 2012 – M. Antonacci, A. C. Lind
    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.
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/19tGkwrdg6cu5mH-RmlKxHv5KPMOL49qEU8MLGL6ojHU/edit

    A Quantum Hologram of Christ’s Resurrection? by Chuck Missler
    Excerpt: “You can read the science of the Shroud, such as total lack of gravity, lack of entropy (without gravitational collapse), no time, no space—it conforms to no known law of physics.” The phenomenon of the image brings us to a true event horizon, a moment when all of the laws of physics change drastically. Dame Piczek created a one-fourth size sculpture of the man in the Shroud. When viewed from the side, it appears as if the man is suspended in mid air (see graphic, below), indicating that the image defies previously accepted science. The phenomenon of the image brings us to a true event horizon, a moment when all of the laws of physics change drastically.
    http://www.khouse.org/articles/2008/847

    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

    Turin shroud – (Particle Physicist explains event horizon) – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HHVUGK6UFK8

    Moreover, as would also be expected if General Relativity (Gravity), and Quantum Mechanics/Special Relativity (QED), were truly unified in the resurrection of Christ from death, the image on the shroud is found to be formed by a quantum process. The image was not formed by a ‘classical’ process:

    “It is not a continuum or spherical-front radiation that made the image, as visible or UV light. It is not the X-ray radiation that obeys the one over R squared law that we are so accustomed to in medicine. It is more unique. It is suggested that the image was formed when a high-energy particle struck the fiber and released radiation within the fiber at a speed greater that the local speed of light. Since the fiber acts as a light pipe, this energy moved out through the fiber until it encountered an optical discontinuity, then it slowed to the local speed of light and dispersed. The fact that the pixels don’t fluoresce suggests that the conversion to their now brittle dehydrated state occurred instantly and completely so no partial products remain to be activated by the ultraviolet light. This suggests a quantum event where a finite amount of energy transferred abruptly. The fact that there are images front and back suggests the radiating particles were released along the gravity vector. The radiation pressure may also help explain why the blood was “lifted cleanly” from the body as it transformed to a resurrected state.”
    Kevin Moran – optical engineer

    The absorbed energy in the Shroud body image formation appears as contributed by discrete values – Giovanni Fazio, Giuseppe Mandaglio – 2008
    Excerpt: This result means that the optical density distribution,, can not be attributed at the absorbed energy described in the framework of the classical physics model. It is, in fact, necessary to hypothesize a absorption by discrete values of the energy where the ‘quantum’ is equal to the one necessary to yellow one fibril.
    http://cab.unime.it/journals/i.....802004/271

    Personally, considering the extreme difficulty that many brilliant minds have had in trying to reconcile Quantum Mechanics and special relativity(QED), with Gravity,

    A Capella Science – Bohemian Gravity! – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2rjbtsX7twc

    Bohemian Gravity – Rob Sheldon – September 19, 2013
    Excerpt: there’s a large contingent of physicists who believe that string theory is the heroin of theoretical physics. It has absorbed not just millions of dollars, but hundreds if not thousands of grad student lifetimes without delivering what it promised–a unified theory of the universe and life. It is hard, in fact, to find a single contribution from string theory despite 25 years of intense effort by thousands of the very brightest and best minds our society can find.
    http://rbsp.info/PROCRUSTES/bohemian-gravity/

    Considering that extreme difficulty, I consider the preceding ‘quantum’ nuance on the Shroud of Turin to be a subtle, but powerful, evidence substantiating Christ’s primary claim as to being our Savior from sin, death, and hell:

    John 8:23-24
    But he continued, “You are from below; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. I told you that you would die in your sins; if you do not believe that I am he, you will indeed die in your sins.

    G.O.S.P.E.L. – (the grace of propitiation) – poetry slam – video
    https://vimeo.com/20960385

    Matthew 10:28
    “Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

    Colossians 1:15-20
    The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

    Evanescence – The Other Side (Music-Lyric Video)
    http://www.vevo.com/watch/evan.....tantsearch

  54. 54
    Bob O'H says:

    The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history.

    I must admit I find this an utterly bizarre statement (sorry, Barry). Is it really better documented than 9/11, the fall of the Berlin Wall, or England’s 2003 Rugby World Cup win?

    As far as I’m aware, we have less than 10 close-to contemporary sources about Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection, none of which is believe by scholars to be written by an eye-witness, and none was written until at least a few of decades after the events described.

    All of which makes me wonder why Barry wrote that. Does he have access to some other sources? Does he think that a few second-hand accounts are more reliable than TV footage? Or does he, in fact, not think that “[t]he death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history”?

    (I should emphasise that I am not attacking anyone’s faith. I have no problems with people believing that Jesus died and was resurrected. Rather, I would hope they would be realistic about the amount of evidence for these events)

  55. 55
    Orloog says:

    The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history.

    How so?

  56. 56
    Roy says:

    I have no problems with people believing that Jesus died and was resurrected. Rather, I would hope they would be realistic about the amount of evidence for these events

    I suspect the problem – for comparing the resurrection with other events of that century, not for the whole of human history – is twofold:

    first, that those making the claim that the resurrection is well documented are simply unaware of the amount of evidence available for e.g the burial of Pompeii, the Roman invasions of Britain or the destruction of the temple;

    second, that they are unaware of the provenance of the gospel accounts.

  57. 57
    Orloog says:

    To elaborate: Even if we look only at events which happened two millenia ago, the crucification of Jesus Christ isn’t well documented – we don’t even know its exact date! Compare this with the death of Julius Caesar or the destruction of Pompeii…

  58. 58
    Axel says:

    Bob O’H, Roy and Orloog, you try and start a religion with the slogans: ‘Take up your cross daily and follow me’; and: ‘He who loses his life for my sake shall gain it.

    Then see if you can get it to last 2000 years, while becoming the hegemonic religion of the culture that was to develop science and technology for the rest of the world – peoples who neither were nor are one whit less intelligent than the Europeans of ailing Christendom.

    Actions speak louder than words, and the chronicles of the technological development of Christendom and Western culture are all the documents you need.

    However, you may prefer the short-cut of studying the scientific findings in one of the YouTube videos relating to the Shroud of Turin. All performed by eminently-qualified scientists.

    Now you prove – in the teeth of the conviction of virtually all the most distinguished scientists in the history of science to the contrary, that nature was not designed.

    Wake up, Christmas!

  59. 59
    Orloog says:

    @Axel:

    This isn’t about a religion, it is just about a statement about an historical event which Barry Arrington made:

    The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history.

    For me, this statement is preposterous – as there are obviously better documented events in modern times. And I don’t think that it is correct, even when it is rephrased as.

    The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events of its time.

    B. Arrington seems to think that this statement is true, so I ask him how he comes to his conclusion.

  60. 60
    Aleta says:

    Given that Barry must know that his statement is not true, either he could have been mistaken and will admit his error, or, if not, the question in the title of this thread will apply.

  61. 61
    Barry Arrington says:

    Aleta,

    “Given that Barry must know that his statement is not true . . .”

    Like when you, a math teacher, pointed to adding velocities as a case where 2+2=4 is false, all the while knowing that your example is false and intentionally designed to mislead. Ouch.

    No, I stand by my statement. The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most well documented events in history. What is today? Why, all over the world — even officially atheist Cuba — it is September 16, 2015 anno Domini. And who, exactly, is the “Domini” in that phrase? Jesus Christ. You see, Aleta, every time you write a check (or any other document with a date on it), you do a little celebration of the most important man in the history of the human race. And why is he the most important man in the human race? Because of the documents. The Bible is, by far, the best selling book of all time, with some 5 billion copies printed.

    Why is that? Because the truth of the matter — that Jesus Christ did in fact die; and that he was in fact buried; and that he was in fact resurrected — is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history, just as I said.

    I will give you a point of comparison. Counting only Greek copies (in other words not counting early “versions” – translations into non-Greek languages), there are over 5,600 ancient manuscripts of the various books of the New Testament. Including the versions brings the total to nearly 25,000. The earliest of such date to a few decades after the events documented.

    Compare that to a near contemporary event — Caesar’s Gallic Wars – 9 (yes that is right “9”) good copies, the oldest of which is 900 years after Ceasar’s time. Do you, Aleta, have even the merest hint of a doubt that there was an actual man named Julius Caesar or that he fought wars in ancient Gaul? If not, how much more should you believe in the historical account of Jesus, which is better documented by many orders of magnitude?

    Thus, Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection was, by far, the most well documented event in the first, 4,900 years of the 5,000 years of recorded history. That in the age of mass media it is common to have better documented events does not change that fact.

  62. 62
    Aleta says:

    The fact that people have written lots of words about Jesus, and that Christianity became the dominant religion in the Western world is not documentation that the actual event happened.

    People, especially uneducated people, are notorious for having superstitious beliefs – we see that all over the world today and it has been no different throughout history. Whoever the man Jesus was, he was mythologized by his followers. Their conclusion that Jesus was the son of God, while based on actual events, is not documented.

  63. 63
    Bob O'H says:

    Because the truth of the matter — that Jesus Christ did in fact die; and that he was in fact buried; and that he was in fact resurrected — is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history, just as I said.

    Really? Show us the reliable documentation of the event! There may well be lots of texts around, but none were written at the time, so how do we know how reliable they are? There are, after all, a lot of copies of the Harry Potter books around, but they’re not reliable history.

    Some people argue that Jesus Christ didn’t even exist, citing (in part) the lack of any direct evidence: outside of the Gospels there’s no near-contemporary evidence for his existence (in contrast to Julius Caesar’s existence, where we have coins, statues etc.). I certainly don’t go as far as the mythicists who claim that Christ never existed, but I would also like to see a wider range of evidence for what actually happened.

  64. 64
    Barry Arrington says:

    Aleta,

    The fact that people have written lots of words about Jesus, . . . is not documentation that the actual event happened.

    Good grief.

  65. 65
    Barry Arrington says:

    Aleta,

    Whoever the man Jesus was, he was mythologized by his followers.

    So, you are a dogmatist. It is, of course, futile to argue with a dogmatist.

  66. 66
    Barry Arrington says:

    Bob, do you doubt that there was a man named Julius Caesar or that he fought wars in ancient Gaul?

    But the texts documenting that event are far less reliable — by several orders of magnitude — than the texts documenting the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

    If you don’t doubt the existence of Julius Caesar, it would seem that your skepticism is conveniently selective.

    there’s no near-contemporary evidence for his existence (in contrast to Julius Caesar’s existence, where we have coins, statues etc.

    That statement betrays a woeful ignorance of the historical record Bob. I do not have time to educate you today. But you really should take some time to educate yourself on the topic.

  67. 67
    Barry Arrington says:

    Bob and Aleta alternately play the part of Richard Dawkins in this video:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0d4FHHf00pY

  68. 68
    Aleta says:

    Barry writes,

    So, you are a dogmatist. It is, of course, futile to argue with a dogmatist.

    Well, that’s the pot calling the kettle black, in spades.

    But I know any more comment is futile.

  69. 69
    Barry Arrington says:

    Aleta,

    But I know any more comment is futile.

    Aleta: “The fact that people have written lots of words about Jesus, . . . is not documentation that the actual event happened.”

    Yes, I am pretty sure I can’t top that.

  70. 70
    kairosfocus says:

    Folks,

    If you want a 101 on Jesus and why Christians think of him as we do on the strength of the 500 witnesses and transforming power manifested for 2000 years now, try here on:

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

    For a deeper look, try Habermas here for starters:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B0lNXgdbmAkeUWEtNVEyZ0tONmlkdUsxNC15V1Jrc281eXVr/view?pli=1

    There is a lot of ill-informed dismissive hyperskepticism out there.

    A good case can be made that 1 Cor, which contains 15, is 55 AD, and speaks to incidents and a summary c 35 – 38 AD wth Peter, James, John and Paul directly involved. Lk-Ac makes best sense as composed 58 – 62 AD, and largely in contact with the witnesses in Palestine shortly before they were forever scattered by the wars from 66 AD on, which in turn puts Mk 40 – 50 AD, despite many speculations otherwise. And, there is no good historical reason to assign authorship other than traditional, indeed, the fact of authorship by Lk and Mk as apostolic men not Apostles, though themselves somewhat fringe participants, speaks for itself.

    It would be advisable to try the exercise in comparative historical explanations in the first linked for yourself.

    Finally, the opening words of Lk speak for themselves:

    Lk 1: 1 Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us, 2 just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us, 3 it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, 4 that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught.

    In short, a solemn declaration to intent to write history, under circumstances of the most solemn duty of truth, and in the face of a situation where life could be forfeit for the truth, and soul for the untruth.

    I hardly need to add that for a century and more, Luke has shone as a careful, diligent historically focussed writer.

    We are back to, whose report we will believe, why.

    KF

  71. 71
    Bob O'H says:

    Bob, do you doubt that there was a man named Julius Caesar or that he fought wars in ancient Gaul?

    Err, no. We have evidence, and not just texts.

    If you don’t doubt the existence of Julius Caesar, it would seem that your skepticism is conveniently selective.

    I don’t understand this. I thought I had made it clear – I doubt the existence of Julius Caesar just as much as I doubt the existence of Jesus Christ. In what way is that conveniently selective?

    That statement betrays a woeful ignorance of the historical record Bob. I do not have time to educate you today.

    The earliest non-Gospel record is from about 60 years after Christ was wondering around, i.e. a whole generation later. I guess one could call that near-contemporary, so fair enough. Although I gather the mythicists are sceptical of that (and other scholars think that there was some subsequent Christian editing).

    But I’d still like to see more reliable evidence for what Christ actually did, e.g. contemporary accounts from the time.

  72. 72
    Orloog says:

    @Barry Arrington,

    so, Muhammad ascended to heaven, too?

  73. 73
    Barry Arrington says:

    Orloog @ 72

    I don’t believe that he did. Is there evidence that he did? Islamic teaching unanimously affirms the event. But its basis in Mohammad’s eye-witness testimony is scant and vague. There is only one verse in the Koran that alludes to the event:

    Glory to (God) Who did take His Servant for a Journey by night from the Sacred Mosque to the Farthest Mosque whose precincts We did bless, – in order that We might show him some of Our Signs: for He is the One Who heareth and seeth (all things).

    Surah 17.1

    This verse is interpreted as Mohammad affirming that he was raised up into heaven. If one gets past the vagueness of the verse and agrees with that interpretation — i.e., that Mohammad affirmed that he was raised into heaven — then there is in fact evidence that Mohammad was raised into heaven, i.e. his own eye-witness testimony. Now, the task is to evaluate the amount and quality of the evidence and make a determination about whether to believe that testimony. Having done that, I conclude that the proposition is far from proved.

    The amount and quality of the evidence for the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, by contract, is far superior in both amount and quality. I have evaluated that evidence and come to the conclusion that the affirmed events did in fact take place.

  74. 74
    Barry Arrington says:

    Bob:

    But I’d still like to see more reliable evidence for what Christ actually did, e.g. contemporary accounts from the time.

    And you would probably not believe those accounts either. When someone does not want to believe, no amount of evidence is ever good enough. Learned Hand’s resistance to the law of identity, if nothing else, teaches us that.

    Your comment reminded me of the rich man in Hades who asked Abraham to raise someone from the dead to go back and warn his brother. Abraham said no, because there was already plenty of evidence, Moses and the prophets. In Luke 16 we pick up the story:

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

    31 “He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”

  75. 75
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    Carpathian, let us go back to eigenstate’s statement. Do you agree with him that the two statements mean the same thing?

    Here is your quote:

    OK. Consider the following two statements.

    LH1: “I cannot . . . be . . . certain of anything”

    LH2: “the proposition is not fallible”

    Here are his two statements:

    LH before: I cannot therefore be logically, absolutely certain of anything—not even that A=A.

    LH today: Defining A as equal to A is defining A as equal to A; the proposition is not fallible if the only metric is its own definition.

    Look at the last part of the sentence.

    “…the proposition is not fallible if the only metric is its own definition.

    Why did you not post the whole thing?

  76. 76
    Barry Arrington says:

    C

    Why did you not post the whole thing?

    Because the part that I elided was not relevant to the point.

    In the first statement LH said he could never be certain about anything. That means anything whatsoever, including, but not limited to, whether A=A. In the second statement LH said that A=A is an infallible proposition, which means he is certain it is true. So in the first statement he said he could not be certain about anything. In the second statement he said he could be certain about at least one thing. The statements cannot be logically reconciled, which, of course, does not mean that you will not try to reconcile them nevertheless. Go ahead.

  77. 77
    Carpathian says:

    Barry,

    No, it means the defined proposition is true, regardless of his or anyone’s opinions about it.

    Because the part that I elided was not relevant to the point.

    Of course it was relevant. You removed a qualifier from the second statement.

    Without the qualifier , the statement could be understood as saying the entity represented by A .

    With the qualifier he clearly shows that he is talking about the symbolic definition, not what the symbols represent.

    Both statements can be true at the same time.

    They do not mean the same thing.

  78. 78
    Barry Arrington says:

    C,

    Your position is that statement A (I cannot be infallibly certain about absolutely anything) is totally consistent with statement B (I can in fact be infallibly certain about at least one thing– that the defined proposition is true).

    Well, I guess we are done. Your insane denial is impenetrable, and further discussion is pointless. But everyone knows the truth, including you. BTW, I am very much indebted to you for providing an example of the type of thing Charles alluded to in the OP. Thank you.

  79. 79
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    Well, I guess we are done. Your insane denial is impenetrable, and further discussion is pointless. But everyone knows the truth, including you.

    Yes, I know the truth.

    1) eigenstate didn’t lie

    2) You are claiming you don’t understand a point you clearly do.

    3) You are misleading myself and other readers of this very badly put together misleading post.

    4) You’ve again resorted to personal attacks when you have no comeback in a debate.

  80. 80
    StephenB says:

    Aleta

    The fact that people have written lots of words about Jesus, and that Christianity became the dominant religion in the Western world is not documentation that the actual event happened.

    How do you explain the fact that Josephus, the Jewish Historian, and Tacitus, the Roman historian, confirm the Biblical account of those events?

  81. 81
    Roy says:

    Mr Barrington:

    No, I stand by my statement.

    Except that he doesn’t. His original claim covered all of human history; he has now changed it to “the first, 4,900 years of the 5,000 years of recorded history.” He has agreed that there are much better documented events since the onset of mass media. He has not, however, admitted that his original claim was wrong.

    Counting only Greek copies (in other words not counting early “versions” – translations into non-Greek languages), there are over 5,600 ancient manuscripts of the various books of the New Testament. Including the versions brings the total to nearly 25,000. The earliest of such date to a few decades after the events documented.

    Compare that to a near contemporary event — Caesar’s Gallic Wars – 9 (yes that is right “9”) good copies, the oldest of which is 900 years after Ceasar’s time.

    This is equivocating between the reliability of transmission of the text, which few people doubt, with the reliability of the text as documentation of the actual events. The bible is certainly one of the most reliably transmitted documents. That does not make it the most reliable account of events.

    In any case, many historical documents are originals, not copies. Egyptian hieroglyphics, for instance. Or Roman inscriptions. Or Mesapotamian clay tablets. These are more reliable than the new testament since no transcription errors can occur if there is no transcription. The new testament is not the most reliable documentation even under Mr. Arrington’s own criteria.

    Mr Barrington has not even attempted to address the actual criticisms of his claim – that the biblical accounts are less reliable than many historical accounts because they are separated in time and space from the events they describe, while many other historical accounts are not. The Battle of Waterloo, for instance.

    Finally, Mr Arrington’s support covers only textual documentation. There are many historical events which are documented through physical evidence. The burial of Pompeii, for instance, or the use of the Lascaux caves.

    While not being insane, his revised claim is still false.

  82. 82
    Orloog says:

    @BA

    Can we at least agree that the claim that “The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history” is false as there are countless (much less important) events during the last fifty years which are more reliably documented (even with a timestamp)?

  83. 83
    Aleta says:

    Barry says that

    LH said that A=A is an infallible proposition, which means he is certain it is true.

    What LH actually said was,

    Defining A as equal to A is defining A as equal to A; the proposition is not fallible if the only metric is its own definition.

    We have a category error here, similar to the one kf made when he thought I was trying to prove the parallel postulate false. Logical axioms and definitions are accepted as true within their logical system – their truth or falsity can’t be determined by reference to anything outside of that system.

    You can change the axiom or definition and see what happens within the logical system, but what you have then is a new, different logical system, as is done with considering different versions of the parallel postulate and coming up with different non-Euclidean geometries. That doesn’t make the original parallel postulate false. All three versions of the parallel postulate are equal true within their own system, but you can’t say that any one of them is false just because other versions are used in other systems. None of the versions are “true” in any sense other than they are an axiom in their own system

    Barry’s misunderstanding is similar here. To the extent that A = A is a definition/axiom in logic, it is true within that system. However, from a viewpoint outside that system, truth or falseness, falliblity or infallibility, aren’t categories that apply, because a definition/axiom within a logical system can’t be wrong (assuming it is not inconsistent with other propositions within the system.). It just is. It might lead to logical conclusions that have no possible use that we can see as a model for something in the world, but asking whether an axiom is right or wrong is not a meaningful question within the logical system itself.

  84. 84
    Roy says:

    How do you explain the fact that Josephus, the Jewish Historian, and Tacitus, the Roman historian, confirm the Biblical account of those events?

    “Josephus” was altered later. Tacitus may be independent confirmation of the crucifixion, although he is more likely to simply be repeating the claims of Christians in Rome crucifixion, but does not mention a resurrection.

    Did you really expect your question to be unanswerable?

  85. 85
    Orloog says:

    @StephenB

    How do you explain the fact that Josephus, the Jewish Historian, and Tacitus, the Roman historian, confirm the Biblical account of those events?

    They do? Tacitus doesn’t say anything about the resurrection…

  86. 86
    Mung says:

    Orloog: …there are countless (much less important) events during the last fifty years which are more reliably documented (even with a timestamp)?

    So?

  87. 87
    Orloog says:

    @Mung,

    as there are countless events which are more reliably documented, the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is not one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history.

    Which makes Barry Arrington’s statement factually wrong.

  88. 88
    Andre says:

    Of course the truth of a person is not spoken by those that support him but by those that oppose him.The biblical narrative of Jesus is corroborated by the Jewish writings about him, and they don’t mince their words but they never deny him…. wonder why? But please don’the let evidence stand in way.

  89. 89
    Aleta says:

    Trying to be more precise:

    Definition concerning 2-dimensional geometry: Given a line and a point not on the line, if a line through the given point never intersects the given line, we say the line is “parallel”.

    Proposition P: Given a line and a point not on the line, there is one and only one line parallel to the given line.

    Proposition P is neither true nor false without further context. There is nothing you could do to prove that P was true, or to disprove it as it stands.

    Within Euclidean (flat-space) geometry, P is an axiom. It is assumed true, and then many other conclusions follow.

    Within the other two non-Euclidean geometries, other propositions concerning the number of parallel lines are taken as axioms, so in those systems P is false.

    It does not make sense to say that P is true or false without stating which geometry we are referring to because the truth or falsity of P merely depends on a decision to accept it as an axiom. Without the context of which geometry being referred to, or just as a standalone statement, P is neither true nor false.

    Note that this whole discussion is just about pure logic. Questions about whether P is true for a particular real surface is a subject for empirical investigation. But by itself, not only can pure logic not determine the truth or falsity of P, even asking whether P is true or false is not a sensible question. It is either an axiom or it isn’t, and its truth or falsity depends on whether we adopt it as such or don’t.

  90. 90
    Andre says:

    I forgot to mention. The Jews agree that Christ was crucified, that he was a sorcerer, a troublemaker and that his body was never found. They did blame some garden keeper for the theft but the actual body was never recovered.

    Now this leaves us with what happened to the 11 apostles. 3 days before the resurrection these 11 men must have been the most dissapointed men ever. The Messiah was dead, but then something happened and these 11 souls endured the most agonising torture you could imagine but never recanted their testimony. What happened? Either Christ really resurrected or they lied. But I have never met anyone that has ever been prepared to die for a known lie. Have you? Is it possible they had an hallucination? Not if you take the 500 witnesses into account and the multiple sightings that could easily have been refuted by those there.

    It takes a special kind of ignorance to not consider the facts and details. And it takes a special kind of stupid to just dismiss it without a very reasonable explanation. Right now there is no reasonable explanation that refutes Christ’s resurrection. Nada, nothing.

  91. 91
    Barry Arrington says:

    Orloog,

    as there are countless events which are more reliably documented

    Really, there are countless other events that were documented and truth of the documentary account was substantiated by dozens of eye-witnesses who instead of recanting their substantiation chose to die horribly painful deaths?

    Who knew that if Peter had only had a time stamp he could have avoided being crucified upside down?

    The documents constituting the New Testament are vouchsafed with the blood of the martyrs. Nothing else comes remotely close.

  92. 92
    Orloog says:

    [it] was substantiated by dozens of eye-witnesses who instead of recanting their substantiation chose to die horribly painful deaths

    Dozens of eye-witnesses of the resurrection who were put to death? A bold claim! Whom besides James are you thinking of?

  93. 93
    StephenB says:

    Roy

    “Josephus” was altered later. Tacitus may be independent confirmation of the crucifixion, although he is more likely to simply be repeating the claims of Christians in Rome crucifixion, but does not mention a resurrection.

    Did you really expect your question to be unanswerable?

    So, now you are reduced to telling us that Tacitus didn’t bother to check his facts. So far, the question hasn’t been answered at all. The Gospel reports were corroborated by two independent and disinterested sources, both of whom were not even Christians. The idea that Josephus’ account of Christ’s activities was redacted is not credible, and Tacitus, though he did not write about the resurrection, did report about miracles. All the facts indicate that what the apostles said was true. There are no facts to indicate that what they said was false.

  94. 94
    StephenB says:

    Orloog

    Dozens of eye-witnesses of the resurrection who were put to death? A bold claim! Whom besides James are you thinking of?

    For starters, ll out of the 12 apostles who witnessed Christ’s return from the dead, were martyred.

  95. 95
    Mung says:

    Orloog:

    …as there are countless events which are more reliably documented, the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is not one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history.

    And there are countless * countless ^ countless events which are not documented at all, which makes the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history.

    Which makes Barry Arrington’s statement factually wrong.

    Not even close.

  96. 96
    Mung says:

    If you are going to lie, you may as well lie about the truth!

  97. 97
    Barry Arrington says:

    Roy,

    “Josephus” was altered later.

    Can you point to even a single manuscript that does not contain the Testimonium Flavianum?

    BTW, in case you don’t know, the answer is “no.” The criticism of the Testimonium is 100% of the sort of “I don’t think he would have said something like that.”

  98. 98
    kairosfocus says:

    Folks,

    Remember this is an ilk that has problems with seeing from a distinct thing A (e.g. a red ball on a table) that there is a world partition:

    W = {A | ~A }

    and that the LOI, LNC and LEM are immediately present once that is so. They are struggling even harder to recognise that thinking and communicating in language etc requires just this and that any argument therefore implicitly builds on this.

    So, it should not surprise us to see selectively hyperskeptical double standards on historical documentation and evidence when something so inconvenient as the founding figure of the Christian faith is on the table. (E.g. there is a whole civilisation changing church in testimony to the impact of Jesus and his disciples, e.g. most of the same objectors would never dare suggest that by the same standards they are using most classical history would be ash-canned, or that the Historicity of say Mohammed would be dismissed. Hyperskeptical dismissiveness needs to be named for what it is, and ring fenced as utterly irrational. The historicity of Jesus is not in any serious question, though the claim of his resurrection is controversial. Controversial because of its consequences not the actual strength of the direct and indirect evidence; the latter including the life transforming, miracle working power of that name across 2,000 years in literally millions of lives.)

    Simon Greenleaf of Harvard, a founder of the modern theory of evidence, long since took their measure:

    [26] . . . It should be observed that the subject of inquiry [i.e. evidence relating to the credibility of the New Testament accounts] is a matter of fact, and not of abstract mathematical proof. The latter alone is susceptible of that high degree of proof, usually termed demonstration, which excludes the possibility of error . . . In the ordinary affairs of life we do not require nor expect demonstrative evidence, because it is inconsistent with the nature of matters of fact, and to insist on its production would be unreasonable and absurd . . . The error of the skeptic consists in pretending or supposing that there is a difference in the nature of things to be proved; and in demanding demonstrative evidence concerning things which are not susceptible of any other than moral evidence alone, and of which the utmost that can be said is, that there is no reasonable doubt about their truth . . . .

    [27] . . . . In proceeding to weigh the evidence of any proposition of fact, the previous question to be determined is, when may it be said to be proved? The answer to this question is furnished by another rule of municipal law, which may be thus stated:

    A proposition of fact is proved, when its truth is established by competent and satisfactory evidence.

    By competent evidence, is meant such as the nature of the thing to be proved requires; and by satisfactory evidence, is meant that amount of proof, which ordinarily satisfies an unprejudiced mind, beyond any reasonable doubt. . . . . If, therefore, the subject is a problem in mathematics, its truth is to be shown by the certainty of demonstrative evidence. But if it is a question of fact in human affairs, nothing more than moral evidence can be required, for this is the best evidence which, from the nature of the case, is attainable. Now as the facts, stated in Scripture History, are not of the former kind, but are cognizable by the senses, they may be said to be proved when they are established by that kind and degree of evidence which, as we have just observed, would, in the affairs of human life, satisfy the mind and conscience of a common man. [Testimony of the Evangelists, Sections 26, 27.]

    What we are seeing here is a classic manifestation of selective hyperskepticism. I point to 70 above for more direct information — http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-580454

    When we see this sort of pattern in respect of self-evident truths, abundant and well substantiated historical record and the like it tells us just how low a credit must be attached to the dismissive views of such an ilk in general.

    Including, when it comes to the inductive warrant for the design inference on evidence such as functionally specific complex organisation and information.

    The evidence is, no reasonable evidence will be acknowledged so the matter is not weight of evidence but the fallacy of the indoctrinated, polarised and hostile, ideologically captive and closed mind.

    From this point, the reasonable issue on the table is dealing with such.

    KF

  99. 99
    Barry Arrington says:

    KF,

    Thanks for your post. But after 98 comments I still stand in drop-jawed amazement at the materialists’ capacity for insane denial. Consider Carpathian in comments 79. I demonstrated to him that LH at first said he could not do something. And then he said he could do something. And to say one can’t do something is not the same as saying one can do something.

    Carpathian is having none of it. It is my problem if I don’t understand how opposites mean the same thing.

    I can’t believe he is stupid enough to believe what he writes. Therefore, he must know it is false.

    What’s more, he must know that everyone knows it is false. That is the really amazing thing. He is not deceiving anyone with his falsehoods. Yet he insists on them anyway. Why does he do it? Can someone please explain that to me?

  100. 100

    BA asks:

    Why does he do it? Can someone please explain that to me?

    Self-inflicted insanity.

  101. 101
    Orloog says:

    @Mung,

    very amusing! So, even an event with a quite flimsy documentation – let’s say emperor Vespasian healing a blind man – is one of the “most reliably documented events”, as it is documented at all?

    Well, in this case, Barry Arrington’s statement wouldn’t be a lie, but just a misdirection.

  102. 102
    Orloog says:

    @Barry Arrington:

    Germany’s victory over Brazil on 8 July 2014 in the semi-final match of the 2014 FIFA World Cup is much more reliably documented than the resurrection of Jesus Christ:

    1) Millions of people have seen it on TV
    2) You can find ten of thousands witnesses, who have seen it happening in the Estádio Mineirão in Belo Horizonte
    3) Many of those witnesses have written reports (scores of journalists were present in the stadium)
    4) It isn’t even necessary to torture or kill someone to get information about the event

    In fact, each day there are thousands of sporting events which are witnessed by more than five hundred people, many of those reported via twitter, facebook, etc.

  103. 103
    Orloog says:

    @Barry Arrington:

    The documents constituting the New Testament are vouchsafed with the blood of the martyrs. Nothing else comes remotely close.

    The willingness of an Islamic terrorist to become a martyr of his course isn’t a testament for the existence of 72 virgins waiting for him in the afterlife, it is just shows how severe his belief in their existence is!

    Many religions have their martyrs. Doesn’t make them all true.

    And again, tell me about the dozens of eye-witnesses of the resurrection who were put to death!

  104. 104
    Orloog says:

    @Barry Arrington

    In the context of the title of this thread “On Why Liars Lie”, I’d say that your statement is a lie by hyperbole – or lie by Chinese Whisper:

    yes, there are historians and theologians who make a case that the crucification of Jesus Christ is documented and that there is evidence for the resurrection. It takes some degree of separation to blow their research out of proportion and claim that the “death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history”!

    So, the question only you can answer is: why do you make such a false statement? Or for short – and a little bit inaccurate – why do you lie?

    Or do you take Mung’s view that your statement is essentially meaningless?

  105. 105
    Bob O'H says:

    Barry @ 74 –

    Bob:

    But I’d still like to see more reliable evidence for what Christ actually did, e.g. contemporary accounts from the time.

    And you would probably not believe those accounts either. When someone does not want to believe, no amount of evidence is ever good enough. Learned Hand’s resistance to the law of identity, if nothing else, teaches us that.

    At least give me the chance, Barry. What are these contemporary accounts? I’m not aware of any: the earliest accounts we have were written decades later, some over a generation later. Even if we would ultimately disagree about the worth of the evidence, surely it would help your case if you showed us the evidence you considered reliable.

    You made the claim “[t]he death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history”. Now back it up by showing us the reliable documentation. At the very least point out the documentation that would not be thrown out of court for hearsay.

  106. 106
    Andre says:

    Orloog.

    Can we reason together? Is being killed by others for what you believe in the same as killing for what you believe in?

    Do you know anyone that has willingly had themselves killed by others for a known lie?

  107. 107
    Andre says:

    Orloog.

    Have you ever taken the time to research what the Jews said about Jesus? Ever? I’ll say it to you again, When your enemies acknowledge you even with scorn and disdain it is another corroborative piece of evidence that is affirming a claim.

    Jewish antiquity does not deny Christ do they? No they call him names they use scorn and hatred to describe him but they certainly do not deny him. With so much evidence coming from the Gospels, The Roman Historians, Jewish Historians and those that denounce Him as the Messiah can you seriously still say the information about him is unreliable? Honestly?

  108. 108
    Orloog says:

    @Andre

    1) Islamic terrorists commit suicide missions, so they intend to be killed by others for what they believe in while killing for what they believe in….

    2) “Do you know anyone that has willingly had themselves killed by others for a know[n] lie?” I assume that there a couple of cases where someone was willing to give up his live to perpetuate a lie, but most martyrs believe their convictions – so, even if they are wrong, they aren’t lying. Take e.g., those killed by ISIS out of “religious” reasons: they may have had a chance to “recant”, but they didn’t – and not only Christians are put to death in horrible ways, but members of other religions, too!

  109. 109
    Andre says:

    Bob

    Hope you take the time to read this article, if you can refute it or show it to be erroneous please do so.

    http://www.biblearchaeology.or.....px#Article

  110. 110
    Andre says:

    Orloog

    Please don’t be obtuse is being killed by others the same as killing others? Did a single Disciple after their conversion lift a hand to hurt anyone?

    There is not a single person in this world that will die for a known lie, people will do so for a false truth but never for a known lie.

    Will you lay down your life for a known lie?

  111. 111
    kairosfocus says:

    Orloog:

    I think your comparison at 103 is so outrageous that it demands application of the mirror-projection principle. In short, would you like to be read in the way you are projecting there? (Which, is at least one motivation for the principle of charitable reading rather than suspicious reading.)

    Let me highlight a basic fact: martyr is the Greek word for witness.

    It is the Apostles, other early martyrs and confessors who — by peacefully insisting on testifying to what they knew to be true in the face of dungeon, fire, sword and worse, thus literally sealing their testimony with their blood shed by judicial murder or at the hands of vigilantism — rewrote the proper meaning.

    In short, solemnly aware that they faced the eternal judgement of God, they refused to recant the eternally freighted truth they knew as eyewitnesses in the first instance.

    It is an inexcusable insult to their memory, peaceful sacrifice in witness to truth, and common decency to instantly, invidiously compare such to murderous fanatics who may well be deluded but were in no position to personally directly know the truth of the foundation of Islam.

    The two cases are simply not comparable, and you know it or should have easily known it to the point where a reasonable, civil person would not have written as you did.

    But, without hesitation, compunction or pause, you projected as above.

    You have therefore told us much about yourself, that you care nothing to check credible facts, record and scholarship before dismissing what does not suit your convenience. You have shown utter want of judicious temperament. You have shown utter disregard for truth, reasonable warrant and a suspicious sign of willingness to project false accounts and accusations to your perceived advantage. You have shown a depth of hostility to God and those who served him by peacefully standing up in witness at horrific cost. You have shown the sort of potential for exactly the sort of fanatical violence lurking within by your willingness to project utterly unwarranted invidious associations of peaceful martyrs with murderous fanatics as you did. Indeed, you inadvertently reveal a bigotry tantamount to that of racism or the like in the implied stereotyping, scapegoating, unjustified accusation and demonisation in your remarks.

    In short, you have shown precisely the signs and trends that our civilisation had better wake up to and walk away from before it becomes too late.

    Bloodily too late.

    Eternally too late.

    That same injudiciousness showed itself in your implied demand for arbitrarily high “proof” demanded of C1 events by comparison with C21 ones, in 101 – 102 and 104 above.

    What is the reasonable context of understanding “best documented” or the like?

    Ans: in light of the classical times context, bearing in mind the ravages of time and events.

    In that context to have four eyewitness lifetime record biographies, references in over a dozen other similarly early documents, the foundation of a rapidly spreading unstoppable movement (with 500 core witnesses, not one of whom could be turned by the threats or inducements of state agents determined to uproot what they saw as a potential source of uprisings), and more for the life of a village carpenter cum itinerant preacher from a backwaters hamlet of no account is indeed utterly astonishing. (Though it should be noted that such obscurity was actually sought in the first instance to save the life of one targetted by malevolent authorities from birth, as the account notes.)

    Further to this, your ignorance about the ability of a community with hundreds of witnesses to an event to control oral tradition for generations, preserving the core accuracy of narratives of key events is on display.

    An ignorance backed up by the failure to reckon with the record we have from hostile or at least uninvolved witnesses. Where, at least one of such, having been murderously kicking against the pricks, became the leading missionary of the witness he once harried to the death.

    So much so that his tombstone in Rome reads, Paulo Apostolo Mart.

    There is a reason why our sons are Paul and our dogs Nero.

    The verdict of history is in. In the case of Athens, it is no accident that at the foot of Mars Hill a bronze plaque stands with the speech of Acts 17 on it, the speech once dismissively sneered out of court. And the street running by, passing near Hill, Agora, and Parthenon alike, is named after that Apostle, and then picks up with the name of that city’s patron saint, Dionysius the Areopagits. Yes, the same who had the courage to stand for the truth when he heard it from the mouth of the Apostle.

    It is this same Apostle and former arch-persecutor [itself a powerful testimony to the veracity of the message he once made havoc of in the literal sense] who in 55 AD put on record the summary of the common witness of the 500 that we may read in 1 Cor 15:1 – 11. A core testimony that circumstances date to 35 – 38 AD, in the city where events happened, which also happened to be the headquarters for the first circle of official opposition by authorities threatened by the new movement.

    Such a record is unprecedented, and nonpareil.

    It is not on trial, we are.

    I have not bothered to detail the millions whose lives have been transformed for the good by living encounter with God in the face of the living, risen Christ. I will but note that some have played distinguished positively transforming roles in history, and that such are readily to hand all across the world today, if you are but inclined to seriously listen instead of project, demonise and dismiss.

    In answer to your selective hyperskepticism, I pose the Morison challenge, by the Barrister of that name in his Who Moved the Stone?:

    [N]ow the peculiar thing . . . is that not only did [belief in Jesus’ resurrection as in part testified to by the empty tomb] spread to every member of the Party of Jesus of whom we have any trace, but they brought it to Jerusalem and carried it with inconceivable audacity into the most keenly intellectual centre of Judaea . . . and in the face of every impediment which a brilliant and highly organised camarilla could devise. And they won. Within twenty years the claim of these Galilean peasants had disrupted the Jewish Church and impressed itself upon every town on the Eastern littoral of the Mediterranean from Caesarea to Troas. In less than fifty years it had began to threaten the peace of the Roman Empire . . . . Why did it win? . . . . We have to account not only for the enthusiasm of its friends, but for the paralysis of its enemies and for the ever growing stream of new converts . . . When we remember what certain highly placed personages would almost certainly have given to have strangled this movement at its birth but could not – how one desperate expedient after another was adopted to silence the apostles, until that veritable bow of Ulysses, the Great Persecution, was tried and broke in pieces in their hands [the chief persecutor became the leading C1 Missionary/Apostle!] – we begin to realise that behind all these subterfuges and makeshifts there must have been a silent, unanswerable fact. [Who Moved the Stone, (Faber, 1971; nb. orig. pub. 1930), pp. 114 – 115.]

    In short, your selective hyperskepticism and projections speak inadvertent volumes, and not in your favour.

    Indeed, so extreme is your behaviour, and so extreme in import is the implicit enabling by failure to police among your ilk, that we must take this as a grim warning of what we are up against.

    In short, your behaviour and what we have a right to infer on what it reflects, is a sobering warning.

    I would suggest to you and your ilk, that it is time to think seriously again about where you are taking our civilisation.

    KF

    PS: Those wanting to understand the sort of irrational hyperskepticism so tellingly on display in this thread will find here on a useful discussion:

    http://www.angelfire.com/pro/k......htm#intro

    PPS: Let me again note as above the 101 survey (which includes a discussion of the minimal facts consensus and also a video) here:

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

    and the remarks by Habermas here:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B0lNXgdbmAkeUWEtNVEyZ0tONmlkdUsxNC15V1Jrc281eXVr/view?pli=1

  112. 112
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Those playing the hyperskeptical card in the teeth of self evident first truths and principles of reason, historical record and more should pause and reflect what they tell us when we move on to revisit the warrant for the design inference on FSCO/I etc. It is becoming increasingly evident that we are dealing with the closed, hostile, indoctrinated mind, not genuine reason backed by a judicious temperament. In that light the sort of attitudes and agendas long since exposed by Lewontin et al speak volumes. KF

  113. 113
    Orloog says:

    @KF, Andre:

    A: my cause is better because men died for it.

    B: men died for my cause, too.

    A: but my men died for a better cause!

  114. 114
    Andre says:

    Orloog

    What are you trying to say? Nobody is talking about which is better or worse we are asking are they the same? Yes or No?

  115. 115
    logically_speaking says:

    Kairosfocus,

    I sometimes struggle with your writing style. But what you just wrote in response to Orloog was phenomenal, it was poetry in motion.

    Thank you.

  116. 116
    kairosfocus says:

    Orloog,

    Sadly, your onward rhetorical drivel simply further shows your lack of judicious temperament and your all too manifest closed minded irrational hostility.

    That you seem to think it appropriate to equate eyewitnesses peacefully surrendering their lives rather than deny what they knew to be true and eternally vital as they were actually there, to deluded murderous fanatics 1300 years after the time of Islam’s founding speaks volumes.

    We need no further proof that you are not reasonable, you have insistently demonstrated it, then when called on it have doubled down with a strawman caricature.

    But, we must thank you and those of your ilk who are not rushing in to at least set a balance.

    We understand.

    We know why so many cannot bring themselves to acknowledge simple self-evident truths such as, error exists or the import of a bright red ball sitting on a table, or that simply to communicate in text one must likewise unavoidably use distinct identity.

    Yes, we understand.

    So, when we return focus to the foundations of the design inference, it will be informed by understanding the mentality we are dealing with.

    The record is clear, and sadly revealing.

    KF

  117. 117
    kairosfocus says:

    Logic, I confess, I have been spoiled by too much technical pondering and am trying to recover. KF

  118. 118
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: I think I will clip from the 101, on the twelve minimal facts widely acknowledged by scholarship on Jesus across the past generation:

    ________________

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

    >>The method, in a nutshell — and Greenleaf’s remarks are also highly relevant, is:

    The minimal facts method only uses sources which are multiply attested, and agreed to by a majority of scholars (ranging from atheist to conservative). This requires that they have one or more of the following criteria which are relevant to textual criticism:

    Multiple sources – If two or more sources attest to the same fact, it is more likely authentic
    Enemy attestation – If the writers enemies corroborate a given fact, it is more likely authentic
    Principle of embarrassment – If the text embarrasses the writer, it is more likely authentic
    Eyewitness testimony – First hand accounts are to be prefered
    Early testimony – an early account is more likely accurate than a later one

    Having first established the well attested facts, the approach then argues that the best explanation of these agreed to facts is the resurrection of Jesus Christ . . . . [Source: “Minimal facts” From Apologetics Wiki. Full article: here. (Courtesy, Wayback Machine.)]

    Why is that so?

    The easiest answer is to simply list the facts that meet the above criteria and are accepted by a majority to an overwhelming majority of recent and current scholarship after centuries of intense debate:

    1. Jesus died by crucifixion [–> which implies his historicity!].

    2. He was buried.

    3. His death caused the disciples to despair and lose hope.

    4. The tomb was empty (the most contested).

    5. The disciples had experiences which they believed were literal appearances of the risen Jesus (the most important proof).

    6. The disciples were transformed from doubters to bold proclaimers.

    7. The resurrection was the central message.

    8. They preached the message of Jesus’ resurrection in Jerusalem.

    9. The Church was born and grew.

    10. Orthodox Jews who believed in Christ made Sunday their primary day of worship.

    11. James was converted to the faith when he saw the resurrected Jesus (James was a family skeptic).

    12. Paul was converted to the faith (Paul was an outsider skeptic).

    [Cf. Habermas’ paper here and a broader more popular discussion here. NT Wright’s papers here and here give a rich and deep background analysis. Here is a video of a pastoral presentation of a subset of the facts. Habermas presents the case as videos here and here, in two parts. Here is a video of a debate he had with Antony Flew.]

    The list of facts is in some respects fairly obvious.

    That a Messiah candidate was captured, tried and crucified — as Gamaliel hinted at — was effectively the death-knell for most such movements in Israel in the era of Roman control; to have to report such a fate was normally embarrassing and discrediting to the extreme in a shame-honour culture. The Jews of C1 Judaea wanted a victorious Greater David to defeat the Romans and usher in the day of ultimate triumph for Israel, not a crucified suffering servant. In the cases where a movement continued, the near relatives took up the mantle. That is facts 1 – 3 right there. Facts 10 – 12 are notorious. While some (it looks like about 25% of the survey of scholarship, from what I have seen) reject no 4, in fact it is hard to see a message about a resurrection in C1 that did not imply that the body was living again, as Wright discusses here. Facts 5 – 9 are again, pretty clearly grounded.

    So, the challenge is to explain this cluster or important subsets of it, without begging questions and without selective hyperskepticism. The old Deist objections (though sometimes renewed today) have deservedly fallen by the wayside . . . . We may briefly compare:

    [table of ten alternatives is at the linked]

    . . . . (I have given my scores above, based on reasoning that should be fairly obvious. As an exercise you may want to come up with your own scores on a 5 – 1 scale: 5 = v. good/ 4 = good/ 3 = fair/ 2 = poor/ 1 = v. poor, with explanations. Try out blends of the common skeptical theories to see how they would fare.)

    Laying a priori anti-supernaturalism aside as a patent case of worldview level question-begging closed mindedness, the above table shows that there are two serious candidates today, the resurrection as historically understood, or some version of a collective vision/hallucination that led to a sincere (but plainly mistaken) movement.

    The latter of course runs into the problem that such collective visions are not psychologically plausible as the cultural expectations of a resurrection would have been of a general one in the context of the obvious military triumph of Israel. Nor, does it explain the apparently missing body. Moreover, we know separately, that the culturally accepted alternative would have been individual prophetic visions of the exalted that on being shared would comfort the grieving that the departed rested with God. So, an ahead of time individual breakthrough resurrection — even, one that may be accompanied by some straws in the wind of what is to come in fulness at the end — is not part of the mental furniture of expectations in C1 Judaism. Where, hallucinations and culturally induced visions are going to be rooted in such pre-existing mental “furniture.”

    Where, also — tellingly — the women who bought spices and went to the tomb that morning plainly expected to find it occupied by a dead prophet, one unjustly judicially murdered as so many others had been. (And if you doubt the account that reports how these women became the first to discover the tomb and to see the risen Messiah, consider how dismissive C1 Jews were to the testimony of “hysterical” — that very word in English is rooted in the Greek for womb, hustera (reflecting a very old prejudice . . . ) — women. Such an embarrassing point would only be admitted if the reporter was seeking to tell the full truth as best as he could, regardless of how poorly it would come across to his audience; a C1 audience, not a C21 one.)

    The Easter event cuts across all reasonable cultural expectations, and obviously forced a much closer — transforming — look at messianic prophetic passages such as Isa 52 – 53 which plainly led to an aha moment.

    Moreover, the visions suggestion also runs into the problem of the empty tomb; hence the skeptical resistance to that otherwise quite reasonable fact.

    (Remember, the NT record is that the women disciples who went to the tomb that first Easter Sunday morning to complete the burial rituals that had been hastily begun just before the Sabbath, on finding the grave open and the body missing at first thought the authorities had taken the body. These primary documents subsequently record the Sanhedrin’s official talking point as that the disciples stole the body while the guards slept. Oops. The point of agreement is obvious: the body was missing, and neither group seemed to be responsible for it. [Cf below for more.])

    You may think that this sort of balance of evidence should be well known and that educated, responsible and reasonable people would at minimum be willing to accept it as well-grounded that Jesus of Nazareth was a significant Galilean Jew and teacher who had clashes with the Jerusalem authorities which cost him his life. Whereupon, his followers then proclaimed to one and all across the eastern littoral of the Mediterranean and beyond over the next several decades, that Jesus was the prophesied Jewish Messiah, and that though shamefully (though unjustly) crucified — blatantly true by the criterion of admitting an utterly embarrassing claim — he was risen from death as Lord and eschatological Judge; until Nero would find it convenient to divert suspicion be falsely accusing Christians of setting fire to Rome in 64 AD.

    But, sadly, that is not the case.

    For instance, we can find the dean of the New Atheists, Dr Richard Dawkins (late of Oxford University) in an interview with the September 2012 Playboy magazine (HT: UD News):

    DAWKINS: The evidence [Jesus] existed is surprisingly shaky. The earliest books in the New Testament to be written were the Epistles, not the Gospels. It’s almost as though Saint Paul and others who wrote the Epistles weren’t that interested in whether Jesus was real. Even if he’s fictional, whoever wrote his lines was ahead of his time in terms of moral philosophy.

    PLAYBOY: You’ve read the Bible.

    DAWKINS: I haven’t read it all, but my knowledge of the Bible is a lot better than most fundamentalist Christians’.

    Of course, this confident manner, breezy and contemptuous dismissal is the very opposite to what Paul wrote c. 55 AD, to the Corinthians regarding the core facts of the gospel transmitted to him through the official testimony communicated by Peter, James, John and other leading witnesses in Jerusalem, c. 35 – 38 AD . . . .

    So, Peter — contemplating an impending martyr’s death — makes it clear that we have not followed cunningly devised myths, while Paul identifies the factual status of Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection as the ground on which we are confident of salvation by trusting in him. He goes so far as to state that if Jesus has not risen, the gospel is futile and we have no hope of forgiveness in it.

    So, whose report do we believe, the eyewitness lifetime record of the apostles or dismissals by the likes of professor Dawkins et al, 2,000 years later?

    Plainly, the two are not even comparable as historical sources, so that is not a hard choice. Unfortunately, the sort of cavalier dismissiveness and — frankly — irresponsibility we see from latter-day skeptics has swept up all too many in its meshes.

    Nor is the problem confined to laymen.

    To see this, it will be helpful to excerpt Wikipedia (a known to be generally hostile popular reference), from its article on Bishop J A T Robinson [acc: Aug 23, 2012], on the dating of the NT documents, as it remarks on his well known 1976 work, Redating the New Testament, not least because this is revealing of the climate that confronts Christians who take the NT documents seriously as primary historical materials. C H Dodd’s response is particularly revealing:

    Although Robinson was within the liberal theology tradition, he challenged the work of colleagues in the field of exegetical criticism. Specifically, Robinson examined the New Testament’s reliability, because he believed that very little original research had been completed in the field during the period between 1900 and the mid-1970s. Concluding his research, he wrote in his work, Redating the New Testament,[13] that past scholarship was based on a “tyranny of unexamined assumptions” and an “almost willful blindness”.

    Robinson concluded that much of the New Testament was written before AD 64, partly based on his judgement that there is little textual evidence that the New Testament reflects knowledge of the Temple’s AD 70 destruction. In relation to the four gospels’ dates of authorship, Robinson placed Matthew at 40 to after 60, Mark at about 45 to 60, Luke at before 57 to after 60, and John at from 40 to after 65.[14][15] Robinson also argued that the letter of James was penned by a brother of Jesus Christ within twenty years of Jesus’ death, that Paul authored all the books that bear his name, and that the apostle John wrote the fourth Gospel. Robinson also opined that because of his investigations, a rewriting of many theologies of the New Testament was in order.[16][17][18]

    C. H. Dodd, in a frank letter to Robinson wrote: “I should agree with you that much of the late dating is quite arbitrary, even wanton, the offspring not of any argument that can be presented, but rather of the critic’s prejudice that, if he appears to assent to the traditional position of the early church, he will be thought no better than a stick-in-the-mud.”[19]

    This is sadly revealing . . . >>
    _________________

    This gives the bonus of showing the clear movement roots of the dismissive there is no real evidence attitude we see, the so called new atheists. And, it utterly exposes the intellectual bankruptcy of such.

    It is time that we recognise what we are dealing with, intellectual nihilism posing as brilliance and sophisticated education.

    Even, as Science.

    And if we know what is good for us and our civilisation, we will turn from it.

    KF

  119. 119
    Axel says:

    Don’t worry, KF, nature and the products of their own purblind machinations are making darned sure they’re going to be regarded as the insane blip in the course of the history of science and indeed of the world, that they, in fact, are.

    And science itself, with its metastasized, totalitarian, corporate-driven, atheist cancer will suffer with them in the eyes of mankind – though not terminally, presumably, as will be the case with atheism.

  120. 120
    Bob O'H says:

    Andre @ 109 – I don’t have time to go through it all, but for a start the section about the tomb being empty claims that the tomb was well known (because someone writing at least 3 decades later knew the name of the guy it belonged, and thus it could be checked. Of course, someone could gave removed the body in the mean time. Then there is the bizarre claim that the claim that the tomb was empty is reliable because the people who found it empty were considered unreliable.

  121. 121
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Someone above needs to be acquainted with historiography, and with the Ancient Documents Rule. KF

  122. 122
    kairosfocus says:

    BA, I believe that Havel’s Greengrocer example illuminates the imposition of politically correct falsehood that the prudent man will allow to pass. KF

  123. 123
    Barry Arrington says:

    Bob:

    At the very least point out the documentation that would not be thrown out of court for hearsay.

    OK, Matthew’s and John’s accounts were eye witness accounts. Neither would be thrown out of court as hearsay if they were to say the same thing on the witness stand.

    At least give me the chance, Barry.

    Of course, that is what the rich man said for his brothers. And you have the response. I truly hope you change your mind Bob. But if you don’t and you suffer the consequences of unbelief, it will not be because there is insufficient evidence, and it will not be because the quality of the evidence is low. There is sufficient high quality evidence to convince any reasonable observer. I like you Bob. In the years we have exchanged thoughts, we have usually disagreed, but you have been unflaggingly courteous. In this thread, for example, Orloog mocks and scoffs, but your tone is genuine and civil. So again, I hope you soften your heart. I hope you respond to the gentle tugs of the Spirit. I hope you prepare yourself for eternity.

  124. 124
    kairosfocus says:

    Bob O’H:

    You seem to forget that the first place and for a full generation the central place where the Christian gospel was preached, notoriously, was Jerusalem.

    As in the headquarters of the first centres of opposition, among the Sadducean and Pharisee parties. Where you can rest assured, the officials knew the right tomb.

    In addition, remember the women who found the tomb empty included near relatives of Jesus who had assisted at the burial and were going about its completion. Obviously, in ignorance of the seal and guard put on it. They did know there was a rather large stone and were concerned as to how to get in, but where it was was not their concern.

    Next, remember, this is a point of embarrassment in C1. The men were in hiding, it is the women who show courage and diligence. It is women who — never mind that such were not going to be accepted as credible witnesses in that time and place — then found the empty tomb. And, they assumed the officials had removed the body.

    Nor did the officials dispute that the body was not there, the record is that they spread the report that the disciples had stolen it while the guards slept. Oops. An obvious cover up.

    Then, for decades, the disciples were based right there, teaching a gospel pivoting on the resurrection, with the empty tomb a key factual point.

    And obviously, Saul of Tarsus would have known the facts.

    He plainly knew no such fact as you and others of your ilk imply or he would never have become the lead Missionary of the C1 church, having previously been its arch persecutor.

    Finally, 1985 is thirty years ago. I can recall very well and speak to events of that era, and would know many people who were also present as witnesses.

    Sorry, the attempt to dismiss eyewitness lifetime record fails.

    The wrong tomb hypothesis is an example, not of the cleverness of skeptics, but of how desperate they are to construct any narrative that avoids where they are so determined not to go.

    KF

  125. 125
    kairosfocus says:

    BA, Mark — mainly reporting Peter’s testimony — was also an eyewitness (remember whose house was being used by early Christian leaders and that young man who ran naked from the Garden when they tried to grab him), and some argue Luke may have been in the circle too. Add in the official summary in 1 Cor 15 dating to 35 – 38, gives some twenty identifiable witnesses that can be reckoned co-authors from the 500. And of course the appropriate standard is historiography. KF

  126. 126
    kairosfocus says:

    Onlookers, it is worth pausing to note why it is worth the while to address this seemingly off-topic matter. We are seeing the mindset of the skeptics of design theory. This is an ilk that is resistant to self evident truth and first principles of reason. The weight of primary source historical documents does not budge them, nor the weight of expert scholarship when it does not go where they want. So, when we see the very same objectors dismissive of the significance of functionally specific complex organisation and associated information, that should give us context. KF

  127. 127
    Andre says:

    Don’t have enough time Bob? You are right about that only about 70 years to make your choice. I hope that you will find such time. Take it from a from a former atheist. The truth will set you free

  128. 128
    Roy says:

    And there are countless * countless ^ countless events which are not documented at all, which makes the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ one of the most reliably documented events in all of human history.

    Most people learn the difference between comparatives and superlatives at an early age.

    But not Mung.

    He probably thinks that tortoises are one of the fastest organisms on the planet because they’re more mobile than plants and plankton.

  129. 129
  130. 130
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    Carpathian is having none of it. It is my problem if I don’t understand how opposites mean the same thing.

    Of course it is your problem if you don’t understand something.

    The thing you claim you don’t understand however, is a statement that is totally made up by you.

    I can’t believe he is stupid enough to believe what he writes. Therefore, he must know it is false.

    I tend to be more respectful than you so I’ll use the term intelligent.

    You are far too intelligent to believe the two statements mean the same thing.

    You implied as much when you made the effort to take the qualifying portion of the text out of the second statement.

    What’s more, he must know that everyone knows it is false. That is the really amazing thing. He is not deceiving anyone with his falsehoods. Yet he insists on them anyway. Why does he do it? Can someone please explain that to me?

    Desperation on the part of the losing half of a debate leads to a strategy of painting the winner as some sort of villain or tragic figure.

    This is why IDists attack the messenger.

    They don’t have a strong enough message.

  131. 131
    Barry Arrington says:

    Carpathian at 130:

    Is it your position that a statement in which a person says he cannot do a particular thing means the same thing as a statement in which he says he can indeed do that very thing?

  132. 132
    kairosfocus says:

    Carpathian, recall that what is on the table now is that not even undeniable self evident truths are strong enough for the ilk of objectors we have been seeing. In that context the issue cannot be strength of evidence but reasonableness of objectors. KF

  133. 133
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    Is it your position that a statement in which a person says he cannot do a particular thing means the same thing as a statement in which he says he can indeed do that very thing?

    I might be too stupid to understand so let’s analyze it together.

    LH before: I cannot therefore be logically, absolutely certain of anything—not even that A=A.

    1) Example 1: A = 2
    2) Example 2: A = my current body temperature
    3) Example 3: A = the slit that an electron passes through

    LH today: Defining A as equal to A is defining A as equal to A; the proposition is not fallible if the only metric is its own definition.

    Whoops!

    We cannot assign anything to A here since the statement is not about something we have assigned the label A to.

    Thanks to the qualifying portion of the statement, we see that this statement is not about A but rather a logical definition of which A is but an example .

  134. 134
    Carpathian says:

    kairosfocus,

    What’s happening here is that the “Darwinist” side can no longer make any statements which do not contain the entire content of one side of a debate.

    If an evo makes a statement X, there is no possibly of adding any detail later.

    In this case, Barry has fixated on semantics, to the point of calling someone a liar who tried to simply better explain his position.

    I believe this should apply then to your side also.

    If you make a statement, make sure it contains the complete ID position on biology.

    Do you think that’s workable in a debate?

  135. 135
    Barry Arrington says:

    Carpathian,

    The question is very simple. Allow me to repeat it:

    Is it your position that a statement in which a person says he cannot do a particular thing means the same thing as a statement in which he says he can indeed do that very thing?

    Yes or no?

  136. 136
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    Is it your position that a statement in which a person says he cannot do a particular thing means the same thing as a statement in which he says he can indeed do that very thing?

    Yes or no?.

    No.

    Here’s a simple one for you.

    Do you think you’re actually winning this argument?

    Yes or no.

  137. 137
    kairosfocus says:

    Carpathian,

    that is your key blunder, you are operating on debate tactics and who is wining/losing an exchange, that wicked art of making the worse appear the better case through rhetoric, the art of typically manipulative persuasion.

    The real issue on the table is to access warranted credibly true conclusions and convictions, which pivots on credible facts and proper logic.

    Which gets us to the pivotal issue, first principles of right reason.

    So, do tell us, when you typed your comment, did you rely on the distinct identity of letters, keys and so forth?

    Patently.

    To do so, you were necessarily using first principles of reason such as LOI, LNC and LEM.

    Which are self-evident.

    That is, certain.

    Which is what your ilk has spent days upon days fighting against tooth and nail.

    So, we can start from that self-defeating stance at the outset, which is what leads to the sort of have the cake and eat it expectation nailed in the OP.

    KF

  138. 138
    Carpathian says:

    kairosfocus:

    Carpathian, that is your key blunder, you are operating on debate tactics and who is wining/losing an exchange, that wicked art of making the worse appear the better case through rhetoric, the art of typically manipulative persuasion.

    LOL!!

    I am pointing out that that is exactly what Barry is doing!

    The real issue on the table is to access warranted credibly true conclusions and convictions, which pivots on credible facts and proper logic.

    Try to convince Barry to do exactly that; i.e, focus on the issue instead of debating tactics like parsing sentences.

  139. 139
    kairosfocus says:

    Carpathian, deflection. Tell me did you or did you not rely on distinct identities of letters and keys in order to comment. KF

  140. 140
    Andre says:

    Can it be that people truly don’t understand the law of identity? I’m struggling to accept that they do.

  141. 141
    HeKS says:

    Andre,

    Every indication I’ve seen so far is that they don’t understand it. If they did, it’s hard to believe they would be trying to use the arguments against it that they are.

    HeKS

  142. 142
    Barry Arrington says:

    Barry Arrington:

    Is it your position that a statement in which a person says he cannot do a particular thing means the same thing as a statement in which he says he can indeed do that very thing? Yes or no?.

    Carpathian:

    No.

    Good for you. Here is an example of the law of noncontradiction in action. LH cannot simultaneously affirm and deny a proposition. And C picked up on it. Progress.

    Carpathian:

    Here’s a simple one for you. Do you think you’re actually winning this argument? Yes or no.

    The answer is “no,” because of the tense of the verb. I am not winning. I won a long time ago. The only thing I’m trying to do is help you understand that. Let’s see if I can shed some light on it using symbols.

    Let “P” be the proposition “Propositions about which I am certain.”

    LH before:

    I cannot therefore be logically, absolutely certain of anything—not even that A=A.

    In this statement LH is saying that he cannot be certain of anything whatsoever. Symbolically:

    P equals 0

    LH today:

    Defining A as equal to A is defining A as equal to A; the proposition is not fallible if the only metric is its own definition.

    LH is saying that he can be certain of at least one thing, to wit, the proposition A=A is true if the only metric is its own definition. LH may or may not be certain about other things, but at the very least he affirms that he is certain about that one thing, that A=A is true if the only metric is its own definition. Symbolically:

    P is greater than or equal to 1.

    The issue is whether LH changed his position about whether he could be certain about anything.

    “P is greater than or equal to 1” is a change from “P = 0”.

    Do you understand now that LH changed his position?

  143. 143
    Learned Hand says:

    Sophomoric. Eigenstate helped clarify this already. And I’ve explained several times. If you go to the comment BA is thrashing into the ground, you can read in context that I’m not distinguishing between the purely tautological use of “A=A” and the broader way BA has used these “principles of right reason” for a long time now. See, for example, his prior uses of these “self-referential truths” as applicable to the planet Jupiter and abortion. This limitation he now wants to impose was not on my mind.

    Later, Eigenstate helped clarify that BA had pulled his own position back into this nook and wanted to stand on “A=A” as a pure tautology. So, in order to clarify my position on that pure, tautological level, I made the second statement above. I thought I was clarifying; BA thought I was giving him yet another way to delay advancing any serious thoughts of his own. I guess we were both right.

    You were right, Carpathian. BA seems bankrupt of actual ideas to support his alleged infallibility (in the non-tautological way, for the avoidance of uncertainty.) But why does that matter, if the mission is to attack the messenger? Ideas would just get in the way.

  144. 144
    Barry Arrington says:

    LH at 143 engages in yet more insane denial.

    In the first statement he said he cannot be certain about absolutely any proposition in the entire universe without a single exception.

    P equals 0

    In the second statement he said he was certain about at least one statement: A=A is true if the only metric is its own definition.

    P is greater than or equal to 1.

    Now he says “P is greater than or equal to 1” is not a change from “P = 0”. It really is astounding.

    At this point people might ask why do I keep goading them into making one insane denial after another. It is a fair question. And the answer is I have a (possibly perverse) curiosity about whether there is any limit to how many times they will deny a truth in bad faith all the while knowing that everyone knows exactly what they are doing. Is there any limit to the earth they are willing to scorch? Will they go on saying the red pen is a flower pot forever? Will LH ever admit that “P is greater than or equal to 1” is not the same as “P = 0”?

    I have to admit that I find the spectacle simultaneously revolting and fascinating. Like a train wreck one just can’t look away from.

  145. 145
    Andre says:

    Barry

    They are shaped for fitness not for truth, and I think they have taken Darwin’s Horrid Doubt to heart…..

    “But then with me the horrid doubt always arises whether the convictions of man’s mind, which has been developed from the mind of the lower animals, are of any value or at all trustworthy. Would any one trust in the convictions of a monkey’s mind, if there are any convictions in such a mind?”

    Darwin, C. R. to Graham, William 3 July 1881

    http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/entry-13230

    Since they all believe that they are the product of some monkey business its not that hard to realize they also know that monkey minds have no convictions thus they can’t be certain about anything only their certainty that they are uncertain. Which of course refutes their uncertainty, but who cares the moral of the story is; You can’t trust the convictions of a monkey’s mind…… They get it!

  146. 146
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington, Looks like I won before I started.

    Learned Hand: So, in order to clarify my position on that pure, tautological level, I made the second statement above. I thought I was clarifying; BA thought I was giving him yet another way to delay advancing any serious thoughts of his own. I guess we were both right.

    You were right, Carpathian. BA seems bankrupt of actual ideas to support his alleged infallibility (in the non-tautological way , for the avoidance of uncertainty.) But why does that matter, if the mission is to attack the messenger? Ideas would just get in the way.

    I was also right that clarification is off limits for our side in this debate.

    Do you notice that Learned Hand is now starting to qualify his statements beforehand?

    If this keeps up, debate is going to get impossible.

    Is that your goal?

  147. 147
    Carpathian says:

    kairosfocus:

    Which is what your ilk has spent days upon days fighting against tooth and nail.

    This argument about logic is simply a distraction from the key debate, that being, did an intelligent conscious designer successfully create life in all its forms and insert them into local and global ecosystems?

    Your side has spent years fighting off requests from ours to show such a designer could actually exist.

    Every single ID argument avoids the designer(s) even though he/she/they are a necessary part of the argument.

    If there is no designer with the capabilities to create the complex biological configurations we see, then biological ID is highly improbable and biological ID should be abandoned as a possible answer.

  148. 148
    kairosfocus says:

    Carpathian

    You would love this to be a debate, wouldn’t you; something decided on rhetorical manipulation.

    Ain’t gonna be so.

    The only reliable basis for views, conclusions and systems of thought is fact and logic relative to those facts.

    It is precisely because in thread after thread something was wrong that it was chased back to worldview roots and chains of warrant. Lo and behold, it came out that the problem starts with the first principles of right reason.

    The bottomline here is that if you are unwilling to acknowledge the issue of distinct identity and its direct corollaries, LOI, LNC and LEM, there is no basis for reasoned discussion informed by fact and logic towards a sound or at least empirically reliable and coherent solution.

    And if there is a whole side that is resisting such self evident first principles, we need to generally recognise that.

    For it means that side, by directly resisting, or enabling or studiously refusing to correct the blunders, is abandoning reason.

    Including the reason involved in using distinct letters and keys to type messages in this thread, which is a case of the world partition and consequent LOI, LNC, LEM at work.

    Until your ilk accepts that here is a basis for reasoning, there is no argument to be had, just manipulation and selective hyperskepticism backed up by nasty power games to take institutional science and science education captive to a priori evolutionary materialist scientism as a lab coat clad ideology.

    FYI, science pivots on inductive reasoning, especially abduction, and requires deductive reasoning especially in the mathematical aspects. Sound science education should acknowledge this.

    On that, the evidence is actually pretty solid, that we have natural and artificial causes, which often may be reliably distinguished on tested signs such as functionally specific complex organisation and associated information. But so long as dialectic is being displaced by rhetoric and agit prop, no progress will be feasible.

    So, what is left to us is to state our position and put it up.

    Soon enough, there will be summaries for the interested person, but no way will there be an open season for the usual points scoring selective hyperskepticism, institutional imposition and the like.

    Then, we can discuss, on the merits.

    With the logic up-front, centre.

    KF

  149. 149
    Carpathian says:

    kairosfocus:

    And if there is a whole side that is resisting such self evident first principles, we need to generally recognise that.

    Knowing what the formal definitions for logic are is not a requirement for reasoning any more than a formal education in music is required in order to write songs.

    My daughter’s logic kicked in before she started school and I never taught her anything about LOI, LNC, LEM, etc.

    Your side has a fixation on discussing logic rather than improving on your ability to use it .

  150. 150
    Ken Helicostomella says:

    Your side has a fixation on discussing logic rather than improving on your ability to use it .”

    I’m afraid that I must disagree with you.

  151. 151
    kairosfocus says:

    Carpathian, it is not formal definitions, it is acknowledging self evident first principles that we are concerned with, given that there has been a challenge all along that on tracing back is now at worldview root level. Remember even the concept that when A is accepted, it raises the issue why leading to B, C etc in a chain of warrant came in for challenge. The conclusion is that we have a major breakdown of basics of logic, reasoning, warrant, evidence and coherence here to address. It did not have to come to this, if there were not patent intransigence all along the line. But as of now, the conclusion I am reaching is that there is a widespread failure at basic rationality, to the point that it is a further factor adding to my increasingly pessimistic view of the prospects of our civilisation. This sort of thing is how classical civilisation broke down — I even note that in my son’s community college course, he is now doing “Communication Studies,” not general studies with a focus on solid reasoning — which I taught years ago. And yes, I take rationality that seriously: civilisation- foundational. But then I am a Christian intellectual fully cognizant of Him who is Communicative Rationality Himself and Wisdom Himself. Yes, part of this turning from root rationality is a reflection and consequence of the overgrown teen ager rebellion directed at God. KF

  152. 152
    Barry Arrington says:

    Carpathian,

    If this keeps up, debate is going to get impossible.

    If you continue to insist on propositions such as “P is equal to or greater than 1” means the same thing as “P is equal to 0” then, yes, debate becomes nearly impossible. I am not actually debating you now. I am merely pointing out your insane denial as many times as you continue it.

    BTW, pointing to LH’s insane denial to validate your own insane denial does not change the fact that you are both engaging in insane denial.

  153. 153
    Barry Arrington says:

    Just to keep this matter in perspective, the exchange between Carpathian and myself involves whether a speaker has changed his position when he says at first that he cannot be certain about absolutely anything and then later says he can be certain about at least one thing.

    Carpathian says the speaker has not changed his position. I say he has change his position, i.e, he has moved from being certain of nothing to being certain of something.

    There really is no debate. That the speaker changed his position is not in question. The only issue is whether Carpathian will continue his insane denial indefinitely (which is my bet) or whether he will eventually give up and admit what everyone (including himself) knows.

  154. 154
    HeKS says:

    @Barry #153

    It’s plain as day that first holding the position that there is absolutely nothing we can know for certain and then holding the position that there’s at least one thing we can know for certain, however supposedly trivial, constitutes a change of position. LH should be commended for simply recognizing that he had overlooked something in his initial formulation of his position. The problem stems from the subsequent fact that everyone wants to insist that the positions are identical … though I suppose this shouldn’t surprise us coming from people who deny the necessarily self-evident truth described by the LOI.

  155. 155
    Learned Hand says:

    Sophomoric. I’ve written dozens of comments outlining my position, thinking and arguing it through. To take one sentence, cut it out of context and hold it up as a complete and total summary of my position is absurd. The tautological reading of “A=A” wasn’t on my mind when I wrote that, as I’ve explained, but as is typical for your lazy and shallow arguments, you simply ignore anything that would require more thought than you’re willing to put into the process. And if I may say so, you are not willing to put very much thought into any argument that is inconsistent with your beliefs. As Carpathian suggests, this is an extended effort to destroy a conversation in which you are unable to participate in any meaningful way.

  156. 156
    Learned Hand says:

    LH should be commended for simply recognizing that he had overlooked something in his initial formulation of his position.

    Thank you. But this reading is probably not going to be accepted here; BA needs to win the conversation. Every conversation. He will do it by banning–I mean, moderating–or by insulting or by any other method, except perhaps engaging with the ideas on the table. But points must be awarded, and awarded only to BA. Blog rules.

    (Speaking of which, whatever happened to Zachriel? I thought he was “in moderation,” temporarily, as opposed to having been banned outright. Yet he seems not to be commenting lately.)

  157. 157
    Ken Helicostomella says:

    KF: “Carpathian, it is not formal definitions, it is acknowledging self evident first principles that we are concerned with…”

    I agree. But I can also see their point. What you see as “self evident first principles”, others may not see it that way. And, with respect, the tone in which you berate them I’d not going to do anything to convince them that you are right.

  158. 158
    Barry Arrington says:

    LH:

    To take one sentence, cut it out of context and hold it up as a complete and total summary of my position is absurd.

    You really are quite shameless. I quote this statement from one of your comments: “I cannot therefore be logically, absolutely certain of anything—not even that A=A.” Then you suggest that the radical falliblism on display is an unfair summary of the arguments you had been making. The truth, of course (as is often the case when you speak) is exactly the opposite. Far from being a distortion of your argument, radical falliblism WAS YOUR ARGUMENT, as is easily demonstrated by several more quotes:

    I think that in practice I’m perfectly safe making some assumptions, and that I can’t really do much of anything without making assumptions like “A=A.” But I don’t know how I can be infallibly certain in the abstract.

    And I have no way to check whether a slice can be greater than the whole other than by testing it, which can never prove absolutely as a logical matter that the proposition is true.

    I cannot therefore be logically, absolutely certain of anything—not even that A=A.

    I think the trickiest question here is whether I can be certain that “I think, therefore I am.” But even there, is the fact that I cannot imagine any reason to doubt it because it’s perfectly true, or because I have an imperfect and limited mind?

    I reiterate that in practice I’d never doubt the basic mathematical principles at issue. The possibility of error is a logical formality

    I cannot be certain about anything other than uncertainty.

    I was sloppy when I wrote “I’m perfectly comfortable agreeing…”, because that can be read as a statement that I agree that I can be absolutely certain that p/slice can’t exceed p/whole. I didn’t mean that

    That doesn’t mean that I expect future physicists to upset the “A=A” cart. But what’s the objective, infallible principle dividing “A=A” from “particle=particle”

    I take the formal position that one cannot be logically certain of anything without an infallible perspective from which to assess it

    This presupposes, for example, that the law of identity would be broken on a human scale if it weren’t absolute. It could be violated in ways that aren’t apparent to you, and thus not absurd.

    You can’t measure all cases, to see whether A is literally always A

    What we’re really talking about here are whether things like “A=A” are proven concepts or axioms that we just assume are true. I think most people take the latter approach, stymied by the obvious impossibility of a human being logically proving themselves to be infallible

    I’ve never doubted that A=A in the real world, and I would never expect to find (nor can I conceive of) a counter-example. But to say that I’m infallibly certain would require taking the position that I’m infallible, and I can’t do that.

    [LOI, LNC and LEM] are very effective axioms. . . .we assume they are true because we cannot imagine any way in which they could be false. But to say that our failure to imagine a counterexample means there cannot be a counterexample is to arrogate to ourselves infallibility.

    Now that we’ve dispensed with that attempted misdirection, on to your change of position. After all of the above quotes, you said:

    Defining A as equal to A is defining A as equal to A; the proposition is not fallible if the only metric is its own definition.

    You have explained the reasons you moved off of your radical falliblism. Fine, but the point is that you did indeed move away from radical falliblism. HeKS’s summary is perfectly apt:

    It’s plain as day that first holding the position that there is absolutely nothing we can know for certain and then holding the position that there’s at least one thing we can know for certain, however supposedly trivial, constitutes a change of position.

    Now you say you did not change at all. You make the absurd assertion that your present non-radical falliblism is merely a “clarification” of your prior radical falliblism. Astounding. Really, how do you live with yourself?

    Your antics over the last few weeks have confirmed yet again an observation I have made many times over the years. If a man tells you he cannot know the truth, you can be sure he will probably act as if he has no obligation to tell the truth.

  159. 159
    kairosfocus says:

    KH,

    self-evident first principles are just that. Once one is in a position to understand — for most relevant things that is the 12 y o intelligent child — then one readily sees that something T is so, and is necessarily so on pain of clinging to absurdities on attempted denial.

    Take, yardstick SET no 1, Josiah Royce’s Error exists, E.

    A 12 yo will be instantly familiar with red X’s on sums and grades in school. So, s/he will understand the truth and will be familiar with it. No sane person will doubt its truth, it is at least morally certain, so beyond reasonable doubt.

    Now sit such a child down and introduce the denial ~E. In effect, it is an error to claim error exists. Immediately it will be obvious that ~E is an error, so E is undeniably, self-evidently so.

    I would point out that this shows that truth exists by direct example of being true, it shows that truth can be warranted as so, i.e. knowledge exists, and that our experience can often show us what is true. However, we also make errors, and should have the humility to use certain points of knowledge of foundational character, as plumb-lines and yardsticks to test other claimed truths, in order to think soundly and soberly. Reckoning that we are finite, fallible, morally struggling — I would actually introduce the concept, fallen — and too often ill-willed and stubborn.

    Do you think such a child would be on the way to becoming a willfully blind, hate-driven potentially violent terrorist or the like?

    I suggest, just the opposite.

    Likewise, I would set a bright red ball on a table in front of the child, say Sandy.

    Tag it A.

    Explain that the world can be seen as partitioned i/l/o the distinct identity, A:

    W = {A|~A}

    A, patently is itself, sitting there on the table, and cannot be at the same time in the same sense ~A. And anything x in the world will be A or else ~A, not both and not neither. Where the ball is just a handy example.

    You may want to say, these are the key first principles of right reason pioneered by Aristotle 2300+ years past:

    I: A thing A is itself [(A => A) = 1, or A = A], LOI

    II: no thing x in W can be both A and ~A, (A AND ~A) = 0, LNC

    III: Any x in W will be A or else ~A, not both or neither, (A X-OR ~A) = 1. LEM.

    Point out that just to use letters and words or computer keys or have a distinct tune etc to think, communicate and operate in community, one necessarily relies on these things. Paul of Tarsus pointed that out 2,000 years ago in 1 Cor 14.

    Point out how just trying to deny such or cast doubt on it becomes futile as it must rely on what it disputes, just to communicate.

    I am highly confident Sandy will instantly realise the foundational, self-evident nature of such principles.

    And given the abuse of Q-mech etc to try to undermine respect for such laws, I would call up Einstein’s office chalk board as he left it and point out how, in order to do Q-mech, physicists and chemists have to rely on the laws just to reason and do the mathematics, or to make and write down observations or to see if they support or overturn predictions of various theories.

    I would introduce the idea of sawing off the branch on which we all are sitting as a profoundly antisocial act.

    Indeed, I would bring it up as a case of behaviour that profits by parasiting off the fact that most people most of the time do not act like that, and ask what would happen to societies in which such principles and their implications are routinely disregarded.

    Collapse.

    Then, I would introduce the Categorical imperative, emphasising the forms that others should be treated as ends in themselves and the test on what happens if the behaviour spreads. I would connect the Golden Rule. I would hen point out moral self evident truths as a key category, and link the foundations of modern liberty and democracy.

    Do you think Sandy would be inclined to imagine that self evidence is unimportant or a mere matter of opinion?

    I think she would know very differently, and would understand how people can be indoctrinated into clinging to politically correct absurdities, to the detriment of society and maybe their own souls.

    And, I am sure Sandy would agree with BA’s maxim as stated just now:

    If a man tells you he cannot know the truth, you can be sure he will probably act as if he has no obligation to tell the truth.

    As the Greeks used to say — now, I cite a favourite saying of my Mom — a word to the wise is sufficient.

    KF

  160. 160
    Carpathian says:

    Barry Arrington:

    There really is no debate. That the speaker changed his position is not in question.

    Of course it’s in question.

    Are you taking the position that I haven’t been arguing with you about it?

    Are you taking the position that the speaker himself has not been telling you that you are wrong?

    What’s not in question is that despite the fact that both LH and myself have pointed it out to you, you still don’t want to understand.

    I bolded want because you are obviously intelligent enough to understand so it is clearly a tactic of yours to claim that you don’t .

    Discrediting the messenger is the strongest weapon IDists have.

    If evidence of biological ID was available, you would concentrate on that instead of useless character attacks like this one.

  161. 161
    StephenB says:

    LH

    Sophomoric. I’ve written dozens of comments outlining my position, thinking and arguing it through. To take one sentence, cut it out of context and hold it up as a complete and total summary of my position is absurd. The tautological reading of “A=A” wasn’t on my mind when I wrote that, as I’ve explained, but as is typical for your lazy and shallow arguments, you simply ignore anything that would require more thought than you’re willing to put into the process.

    Oh, please, LH. You are absolutely certain that tautologies are true affirmations, aren’t you?

  162. 162
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: There is a gap in KH’s rhetoric that needs to be explained, as I noted in the follow-up thread:

    ___________

    >>Why is it that

    a: invidious comparison of the peaceful witness of early Christians sealed with their blood because of judicial murder or riotous lynching with 9-11 terrorist hostage takers and murderers was tagged by KH “The comparison, although crass and emotional, I think is a valid one. The only difference is perspective . . . ” whilst

    b: concerns on longstanding and sometimes trollish selective hyperskepticism and intransigence in the face of self-evident truth (as the OP notes [–> cf 157 above]) are met with “the tone in which you berate them I’d not going to do anything to convince them that you are right”?

    Why is there such “friendly fire” whilst there is oh we must be willing to effectively equate peaceful martyrdom and murderous suicide terrorism? (Given the glaring disproportion in response, is this Stockholm Syndrome or the like? Or, just the notorious tactic of the “I’m on your side but endorse the other side’s agenda” enemy- in- the- gates trollish tactic?)

    I think this calls for some explanation.>>
    ____________

    One of the well known trollish rhetorical tactics is to mimic the power of a damaging admission against interest, by popping up in a discussion and saying I am on your side, BUT, and proceeding to undermine and oppose.

    When we see the sort of utter disproportion to the point of double-standard as shown above, that is a strong hint that something is wrong.

    KH has already had a day to respond, let us see if this more direct challenge to deal with the gap will bring forth a reasonable answer.

    KF

  163. 163
    kairosfocus says:

    Carpathian, when a view is shown to be self-refuting, that is a cogent reply to the case. The discredit that attaches to someone who insists on clinging to absurdity to reject foundational self-evident truths — here distinct identity and its immediate corollaries LOI, LNC, LEM — is a secondary effect. And, if the root problem (having chased back step by step) is that the very foundations of rational discourse are being insistently rejected by the evolutionary materialism advocates and fellow travellers, that is highly relevant to understanding the longstanding pattern of selectively hyperskeptical dismissal of the only vera causa plausible, demonstrated empirically reliable cause of say functionally specific, complex organisation and associated information, FSCO/I. KF

  164. 164
    Carpathian says:

    kairosfocus:

    Carpathian, when a view is shown to be self-refuting, that is a cogent reply to the case.

    Is A used in the same context in both of the following statements?

    #define A 1

    if (A == 2) {};

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