6:49 am July 23, 2011, by Jay
If anybody needs to find me over the next week or so, here’s where I’ll be.
Oh, and you’re going to need a helicopter or a whitewater raft to get there.
Photo by R. Dobkin
July 24th, 201112:20 pm
Hmmm……..you guys arguing a 50/50 proposition………..you all do know there can be no winners……..
July 24th, 201112:22 pm
The Bible gives us wisdom and understanding from an almighty God.. Why miss such a source?
Dusty–I think you’re missing the point entirely. I’d venture a guess that I’ve read the Bible cover-to-cover more times than the average self-described Christian, and have a clearer understanding of what the document actually says than virtually every “Christian” with whom I’ve discussed its contents. Your supposition that those who reject the supernatural elements contained in the Bible simply haven’t read it enough times is, in a word, silly. Certainly the Bible is a great source of wisdom, and I challenge you to show me where I’ve said otherwise. A book of Science, it ain’t. To hold it up as “proof” of a supernatural Being who lives somewhere in space is foolish, IMO, since we have a fair amount of documentation as to how it came about, as Normal alluded to in his 11:49.
If “Christians” simply used the Biblios as a source of inspiration in order to lead a better life, I would have nothing but praise. Unfortunately, as evidenced here on the blog, it goes way beyond that. Fortunately we’ve reached a point in our country in which the Law and Religion are less intertwined than over in the Muslim world, but we’ve still got some work to do to protect “non-believers” from the tyranny of the masses.
I think you’ve gotten to know me well enough here on the blog to know that I am a deeply spiritual person–I just don’t draw my conclusions from only one source. And while lightweights like Thomas can only jerk their knee when they think their chosen mythology is being “attacked”, I think that you run a little deeper than that. I hope, anyway.
BTW, I also think that you recognize my designation of you as being one of the “cool” people here on the blog, despite your tendency to scold the rest of us like disobedient schoolchildren. After all, I am the self-appointed arbiter of all things “cool” here on the Bookman blog.
July 24th, 201112:24 pm
I am the self-appointed arbiter of all things “cool” here on the Bookman blog.
I unashamedly concur!
July 24th, 201112:29 pm
Start from the given. The Bible is the single most important book in Western Civilization. Interpret that according to one’s own beliefs and precepts. It is an encyclopedia of myth, legend, tradition, law, literature, philosophy. theology, and history.
As for its historical authenticity, historians of all stripes agree that once we move into the arena of recorded history, it is pretty accurate. Archaelogists of all stripes have found it to be a good road map. Anthropologists specializing in the Ur Genesis cultural tradition have found it in synchronicity with the mainstream secular findings about life in the ancient world. Specialists in literature stand in awe still of its poetry. Legalists recognize its primary role in the West’s development of the rule by written law. Philosophers from all backgrounds look at it as a classic pioneer work of their discipline. Theologians have made it the subject of partisan bickering. Politicians have hijacked it for their own nefarious ends.
The mere fact that there are those in here now talking about it attests to its enduring impact on the daily lives of so many hundreds of millions of the passangers on spaceship earth.
I’ve offered the same advice more than once. Creationism and global warming end in a draw.
I think it’s why some (Hi, Bruno/AmVet) like to belabor the point. They can claim victory without having to prove or disprove anything.
No dust on my sandals.
July 24th, 201112:34 pm
“And while lightweights like Thomas can only jerk their knee when they think their chosen mythology is being “attacked”, I think that you run a little deeper than that. I hope, anyway”
You fully demonstrate your desire to fight and argue. I am in agreement with your philosophy surrounding the Bible but also have grown exceedingly tired of self proclaimed know it alls.
My companies will hire more than 200 disabled folks in competitive employment in Atlanta. We will continue to provide healthcare and a environment that allows 90%+ retention. You and folks like you will run around behind some pansy ass blog name running your mouth like a 10 year old school girl.
I am comfortable in my own skin debating any pseudo hyper sensitive insecure intellect.
Care to post your liquid net worth for a debate in macro economics, in business formation for social responsibility, in sports? There is nothing new under the sun.
July 24th, 201112:37 pm
It boils down to personal belief……….belief being the operative word……at that point, it should be to each his own and go from there…………..
Much like my question that went unanswered the other day…….How much is comfortable for those that believe we have the obligation to take care of the wont’s……..(I think we all agree the cants need our help).
July 24th, 201112:40 pm
Quite coincidentally, I’m watching an episode on History Channel about ancient aliens and mankind. An interesting proposition was offered for the fable of Noah’s Ark. I never could figure out how they would get all those animals on that comparatively small boat…unless the the Ark was a DNA depository and Noah was an alien. He was supposed to be an albino. Anyway this theory works for me.
July 24th, 201112:41 pm
And I’m not talking about stuff like creation or Noah and the ark type stuff that can be neither proved or disproved. I’m talking in terms of things like the Jewish exodus, the different peoples that lived in the middle east, battles, empires, etc.
TD, my “cool” friend, why should Creation, the Flood, etc. be considered any differently from more mundane historical references such as the various Kings of Israel?? Bible “literalists” claim that you have to accept it all, or you are rejecting it all. And BTW, the Jewish exodus has little historical confirmation outside of the Bible, most certainly in terms of the number of people involved. And do you really believe that people used to live 900 years or longer???
If you are interested in doing more research as to the historical veracity of the Bible, Bart D. Ehrman, a widely recognized Bible scholar, produced an interesting course for the The Teaching Company called “The Historical Jesus”. The bottom line is that other than a few passing references to Jesus by folks such as Josephus and Pliny the Younger, traditional historical sources are basically silent about the life of Jesus. Considering that he ultimately has become arguably THE most important historical figure ever, I find this to be somewhat suspicious.
July 24th, 201112:43 pm
July 24th, 2011
Catch you at the next Mensa meeting my little friend.
Did you attend last years National gathering in Detroit?
July 24th, 201112:49 pm
It boils down to personal belief……….belief being the operative word……at that point, it should be to each his own and go from there
AyeUP! Freedom to worship or not…it’s the American way.
I think we all agree the cants need our help
Absolutely! And I will freely apply the gift of discernment as opposed to the federal government’s “gift” which, more often than not, secures THEIR power and not the individual’s.
You and folks like you will run around behind some pansy ass blog name running your mouth like a 10 year old school girl…..Care to post your liquid net worth for a debate in macro economics, in business formation for social responsibility, in sports? There is nothing new under the sun.
Um, exactly WHO is insecure here Thomas?? Thou dost protest too much. I have no obligation to reveal anything to you, and certainly no motivation to do so, given your cockroach-like tendencies. Believe as you wish, but I can tell you that your powers of assumption are lacking. Keep telling yourself how much richer and more powerful you are than I am if it makes you feel better about that fact that you can’t win a debate on an anonymous blog.
July 24th, 201112:50 pm
Well, I come not to argue who is right and wrong. Most of you make good points and spell out what you believe. I do the same.
Carlos: dig deeper!
Bruno (the cool!)–a great mind with but a single conclusion. Try one more.
Josef–always the best definer of complex compendiums and Biblical wisdom. Throw in “faith” and you’ve got it made..
My computer is acting up. Should I disappear in mid sentence you know WHY!! (It’s enough to make one lose their religion, so to speak.) Anyway, off to make a sandwich or two. Lunchtime!!!
July 24th, 20111:02 pm
Mensa? The Piedmont Driving Club of the Pedants of Popular Culture…
July 24th, 20111:07 pm
Many of the events in the Bible, like the exodus, are mentioned nowhere else in any history books. If you or anyone believe these things really happened it is YOUR job to prove it, since you are the ones advocating it. It is not the job of historians to disprove it just because you believe it. There are many books written about these time periods. Should we consider them Holy books too? And, any good eighth grade student could tell you there is no one single book that is “the most reliable textual manuscript in history”. It’s clear scholarship is not exactly your strong suit. In fact, I doubt you even know what that word means.
July 24th, 20111:10 pm
Anthropologists specializing in the Ur Genesis cultural tradition have found it in synchronicity with the mainstream secular findings about life in the ancient world.
josef, my “super-cool” friend–I was curious to know if you had heard that there is now some debate if the Ur of the Bible is the same Ur that we traditionally place in the southern part of Iraq. A few scholars now think that the Biblical Ur may have been much farther north. (And I know how much it would pain you to give any credit to “Northerners”, even ancient Mesopotamians). I won’t go nitpicking through the various historical inconsistencies of the Bible, but while the major events are all very likely to have happened, there are enough discrepancies to limit its credibility IMO. Which in the end doesn’t take away from its value as a great document, of course, as you pointed out in your well-written exposition @ 12:29.
July 24th, 20111:11 pm
When I became old enought to know the difference between blind faith and fact, I stopped believing in superstitition and myths. Looks like you’ve yet to mature to this point.
July 24th, 20111:13 pm
Ooops–Forgot to add a few smiley faces in my smack to you about Northerners, josef.
July 24th, 20111:17 pm
carlos–Just be careful not to throw out the baby with the bathwater. Especially when its the Baby Jesus. Mythology has its place. Some things are best explained using allegories and stories. Are you familiar at all with the work of Joseph Campbell (The Hero With A Thousand Faces)??
July 24th, 20111:18 pm
Yeah, when someone boasts about Mensa membership chances are he’s a misfit loser desperately grasping for a way to puff up low self esteem. IQ tests haven’t been routinely administered for years so many of these characters who think they’re geniuses are just experiencing delusions of grandeur.
July 24th, 20111:20 pm
Just waiting now for Thomas to identify me as a liberal, since he’s such a brilliant deductionist.
Broaden your perspective a bit. There is “historical” evidence for what we now call the Exodus. The massive migrations of peoples from Mesopotamia throughout the Levant is pretty well established. The Ten Commandments are evidence of this in that they are pretty much the Code of Hammurabi. There is considerable archaelogical and anthropoligical evidence that there was another ot those mass migrations relative to the appearance of the story of Moses and the Exodus. This marks the time that the story moves from the mythological into the legendary and tradition. The historical, that is the documented, comes later.
Let’s take just the story of the flood. Noah is perhaps best explained as the Hebraic myth which is mirrored in the Mesopotamian Gilgamesh. Whatever else it was, it was a catastrophic event felt necessary to pass on to the future. It is interesting to find the story in almost identical form in the Choctaw and Chickasaw traditions. Myth or legend in its retelling? Tradition, most certainly, and metaphoric in its meaning.
July 24th, 20111:30 pm
As for its historical authenticity, historians of all stripes agree that once we move into the arena of recorded history, it is pretty accurate. Archaelogists of all stripes have found it to be a good road map. Anthropologists specializing in the Ur Genesis cultural tradition have found it in synchronicity with the mainstream secular findings about life in the ancient world.
Talking snakes, raining frogs, and worldwide floods are an accepted part of the ancient world? Look, I know it’s your sacred text and all, but many major events of the Bible aren’t mentioned anywhere else. A mass exodus of slaves led by unusual weather events and nobody else noticed? That would have been front-papyrus news.
There’s historical evidence of some of the basics, like the existence of a kingdom of Judah, etc. but the big interventions by god…..no. If you take such things on faith, ok. But to claim the Bible is historically accurate is quite a stretch.
July 24th, 20111:31 pm
Here’s one for your logical spiritual domain-
Bruno & Josef,
I have little faith in faith these days. Having been educated in Catholic schools, we spent a lot of time discussing faith. I still do not mind discussing religions – it continues to be a fascinating topic (though not bible reading). But I would, for once, welcome a discussion not about faith per se, but rather one in which we discuss why we humans value faith as we do. It would seem reasonable to me that reason should far outweigh faith. And there is ample evidence that society in general does indeed value reason over faith (in a court of law, for instance). It is only when discuss faith that faith becomes so skewed in value, in my opinion. Whatcha think?
July 24th, 20111:32 pm
Fair swipe that one!
As for the question posed, I tend to go for the more northern location. Topography would make this the more logical place for an urban settlement based on trade and commerce. Secondly, the feasibility of mass migration would logically follow the northern reaches of the Tigris and Euphrates, then southward toward through today’s Israel-Palestine-Jordan into Egypt. The southern site would not have lent itself to these factors.
July 24th, 20111:37 pm
You are way to limited in your view and, I fear, so knee jerk that you missed what I said about myth-legend-tradition-history. I made the point that once we enter into the realm of the recorded historical, the biblical does have accuracy. Like many of the naysayers, you want to bring in the plagues and what have you…does literary metaphor mean anything to you?
July 24th, 20111:39 pm
Not being snippy here, but as I say each time we reach the point of the scientific versus the spiritual and matters of faith…Maimonides…
July 24th, 20111:41 pm
I value my catholic school experience, when we went to a high mass with all the incense burning I knew two things: God was there and I was catching a buzz….
July 24th, 20111:42 pm
Bruno, carlos gvv, and normal
Rather than mentioning the actual exodus as in Moses parting the red sea I probably should have mentioned the Jews enslavement and return to Israel. As I understand it it is historical fact that the Jews were once enslaved by the Egyptians and of course made their way back to the promised land. The actual crossing and parting of the sea I probably shouldn’t have mentioned because as you correctly point out Bruno there actually is little evidence of this event outside of the Bible.
I also addressed normal in this post because he mentioned a history channel special on the bible. In reconciling bibilical events with science the history channel had a special that fully explained how this “parting of the red sea” could certainly have occurred and it was fascinating, interesting, and certainly plausible. The explanation of how this could have happened was far less dramatic of course then the Charlton Heston movie version but I digress.
Anyway, in the history channel special it stated that we now know that there was a volcanic eruption and or earthquake around crete- possibly mt. etna(not sure) right around the time that they believe the exodus occurred. The place where the crossing would have taken place is the tidal flats where when the tide naturally recedes and is at roughly 3 feet when the tide is low. The ensuing tsunami from this volcanic eruption and earthquake would have hitten the tidal flats and just as in the tsunami that hit Asia the waters would have receded for roughly a half hour. But when the water came back in it would have come back with a vengeance. The special never proved of course that this is what happened but it did show that scientifically its very plausible and in fact possible that this is exactly what happened. It was just an interesting special that since Normal liked the other special I thought he might have enjoyed seeing this one.
July 24th, 20111:44 pm
I noticed down thread that you were planning on attending last p.m.’s Beat game.
Nice crowd, a sell-out.
July 24th, 20111:45 pm
“When I became old enought to know the difference between blind faith and fact, I stopped believing in superstitition and myths. Looks like you’ve yet to mature to this point.”
Might want to re-read your post, and then re-visit your definition of mature……….
You say, Look, I know it’s your sacred text and all…” How did you arrive at that conclusion?
July 24th, 20111:46 pm
I was brought up Catholic. My first public school was a university. My first university was a Catholic university. There we had mandatory studies in theology, logic and philosophy. I suppose the idea was that such studies would create well-trained defenders of the faith. However, some things went awry, perhaps at the hands of the system itself. We wondered why we were strongly advised not to read any philosophy texts on the so called “index”. As we pursued our lessons in logic, we wondered at the lack of logic we encountered in religious studies. And in theology class, the bible, never quite the tell all book it is in the protestant religions, took on a distinctly metaphoric hue. In the end, the bible is interesting literature written by men, not the word of God handed down to inspired men.
July 24th, 20111:48 pm
But I would, for once, welcome a discussion not about faith per se, but rather one in which we discuss why we humans value faith as we do.
eyes–I hope you caught my 10:14 in which I put out my own personal opinion re; the Religion Riddle. Unfortunately, instead of stimulating some good discussion, it only resulted in one more leg-humper for me. Also, I definitely hope you played my 11:13 musical selection. Grisman, Krauss, Rice, Crowe and Schatz all on one stage. Helluva throwdown.
Here’s one for your logical spiritual domain-
Mick–I’ve been considering you for the Blog Brotherhood for the longest time. After that one, from now on you are Brother Mick.
Maimo-who?? Is he a professional wrestler or something??
July 24th, 20111:49 pm
And for clarification, I’m on the fence…….leaning toward mostly myth, considering there are xx number of religions and they all claim to be right……
But, when today’s scientists examine artifacts such as the Shroud of Turin, and exclaim that even with today’s technology it can not be duplicated, I think folks might want to keep an open mind…………
July 24th, 20111:51 pm
July 24th, 2011
Thanks! I’ll look that one up and watch.
July 24th, 20111:53 pm
I am a big fan of t he History Channel, though my fervor is on the wane due to a recent lack of historical material. Today, the History Channel is as likely to give us accounts of ice road truckers and pawn shop deals as bona fide history. I believe that I saw that program that you mentioned, and Noah’s Arc and all was covered pretty much the way the History Channel covered aliens from space.
July 24th, 20111:58 pm
I’ll scroll back and take a look.
July 24th, 20111:59 pm
Talking snakes, raining frogs, and worldwide floods are an accepted part of the ancient world?
I can’t speak as to talking snakes but if you don’t think its ever rained frogs or fish for that matter than you need to do read some more on this subject. It has rained frogs, fish, whatever and there’s no mystery behind this- just science. It doesn’t happen every day but has happened plenty of times throughout history. How? Simple really. A strong tornado or oceanic waterspout going over a body of water can suction up and pick up water as deep as 3 feet. Its happened plenty of times where a tornado can skim over a shallow pond, stream, or a waterspout skim over the ocean and pick up a school of fish, a gathering of frogs, etc and simply deliver the animals a mile or couple of miles away. If we’ve seen tornadoes pick up cars, big mack trucks, busses, and deposit them hundreds of yards away then why on earth is not plausible to pick up a school of fish or gathering of mating frogs in shallow streams, ponds, or bodies of water? There is nothing magical about that.
As for the a flood that covered the whole world what you may be missing is that the flood didn’t need to cover the whole world- only the known world to man at that time which would have been a small section of the earth. And as normal pointed out the history channel also I believe had a special pointing out that this weather event could certainly have happened in what was the known world at that point in time in the middle east.
My belief is that this event happened in this fashion in a small part of the known world but that’s just me. Interestingly you may not know this but in the highest mountain ranges of the earth scientists have in fact found the fossils of marine and ocean going animals and that is a fact. I just believe in that instance however that those fossils come from when these mountains were they were at the bottom of the sea before they rose up gradually over millions of years. JMHO though and I sure as hell don’t know all the answers.
“parting of the red sea”
TD–In case you didn’t know, the “Red Sea” is thought to be a mistranslation. It should read the “Reed Sea” according to my sources. Different geographical location from the Red Sea.
At any rate, I was given a fascinating video a few years ago from a group in Tennessee. The leader, Ron Wyatt, went over to the Middle East and videotaped present day evidence of Biblical events. I’m sure you’re aware of the ark buried on a mountainside in Turkey near Arrarat. He also videotaped a “road” under what we think is the “Reed Sea” which is littered with Roman shields, etc. Here’s a snippet:
July 24th, 20112:00 pm
Gah — a man-made guilt trip aboard the shame train for political purposes.
Not to be confused with spirituality.
July 24th, 20112:06 pm
Well, thanks for the induction…we are all brothers and sisters and we are all here to learn…goo goo go joob…where have you gone hillbilly d ? Never believe everything on the net>>>
July 24th, 20112:07 pm
theeyeshaveit and normal,
I believe you and normal are without a doubt 2 of the liberals on here while I of course am I conservative. But we can all definitely agree that the History channel has some fascinating and interesting segments. I for one have really enjoyed the ones where they try to explain how biblical events such as the great flood and the crossing of the red sea could have happened in a plausible fashion. I think a lot of people get turned off by the whole idea that the entire world was under water or that it just rains frogs all the time in the bible. But when its rationally explained how these things happen its then much more believable.
One last thing is that on the history channel they also featured a scientific explanation as to how the 7 plagues would have occurred such as the frogs and the locusts and especially the Nile turning blood red(algae bloom I think it was) and once again the explanations showed that scientifically all of these events are in fact quite possible scientifically.
July 24th, 20112:08 pm
does literary metaphor mean anything to you?
Yes, and I posted before I read your 1:20. But it doesn’t make much sense to me. There’s evidence a bunch of people we could call “Israelites” existed in an approximate location, and how they were conquered, etc. But a book that makes up a history for them couched in literary metaphor is not history by any stretch of the imagination.
I could write a book about a war over slavery in North America in the 1720’s led by Josef the Blog Guy, Receiver of the Sacred Scrolls of Quetzalcoatl. Mentioning a minor king named Abe and the cities of Atlanta, Little Round Top, and Washington L.E does not make this a historical account.
last p.m.’s Beat game.
Kam, the June magicJack vs. Beat game, we walked right in and sat front-row, near center field. None of that last night lol. It’s great to see that stadium full of families having a good time. If you went I hope you had regular seats, the general admission area was a tad warm.
Recon (2nd.and 3rd.)
I’m a believer and my family and I belong to a Christian denomination that believes that the Bible is the word of God and that Jesus Christ is God as in the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Having said that I’m fully aware that the majority left on here don’t share my view and won’t share it regardless of how often I may wish to discuss it, which I choose to do seldom. Conversely those of you on the left who’re non- believers or who label yourselves as atheists will not convince me nor many on this blog who share my views that you’re right and we’re wrong. I will only say to you who often like to say that America is not a Christian country that you are correct only to the extent that we’ve chosen to have a secular government thus allowing us all to worship or not to worship as we see fit. Attempting to imply, however, that our founding and growth as a nation isn’t steeped in Christian beliefs and principals is false and makes you sound very foolish. Over 75% of Americans identify themselves as Christians albeit in varying degrees of faith and religious affiliation.
July 24th, 20112:11 pm
I caught your posts. Thanks.
As Josef knows, I am somewhat of a linguist. As linguistics know (particularly applied linguists), the field of applied linguistics is heavily influenced by trends in psychology. There is a notion in psychology and applied linguistics called “ambiguity”. It is a continuum that ranges from intolerance of ambiguity to full on tolerance of it. If one goes too far to the left or right (sound familiar?) one tends to get a kind of tunnel vision, and is unable to make reasonable statements about his environment (psychology) or the target language (linguistics). This reminds me of the question of faith as it applies to things biblical, religious or of God.
July 24th, 20112:15 pm
I’ve had Beat season tickets dating back to the WUSA. I’m in the west stands so not in the direct sunlight since the games are in the early evening. I did get sunburned when The Beat had a mid afternoon preseason game against Anson Dorance’s Tar Heels.
July 24th, 20112:16 pm
I didn’t know that about the Reed Sea but that doesn’t surprise me- especially that I got it wrong. Now I will say that what I liked about some of the history channel specials is that while they explain how some events could have happened they likewise explained why they believe some things are incorrect.
I think a lot of us are interested in the ark on mt ararat and more interestingly the fact that the Turkish govt will not allow people or scientists to have access to it anymore. But on that one the special I saw said in all likelihood that the ark is probably not Noah’s ark. The reason is that it lies in the path of a glacier that has receded and advanced back and forth many times. The pure power and force of the glacier would have pulverized the ark into smitherines and tiny fragments of nothing. Unless of course the glacier has not moved much since that the time the ark came to rest there.
I was hopeful that it was the ark but from what I’ve read it is in all likelihood not the ark. However it is curious that the Turkish govt- even if it is a secularist govt in Islamic Turkey, will not allow scientists to study it further.
July 24th, 20112:17 pm
Having said that I’m fully aware that the majority left on here don’t share my view and won’t share it regardless of how often I may wish to discuss it
Del–I don’t think it’s strictly a “right/left” issue. My guess would be that Christians are likely equally divided in political outlook.
If you didn’t watch it, check out this video of Noah’s Ark:
July 24th, 20112:21 pm
I am a believer too-
Really got to run now. Great, great discussions today. Amazing what happens when certain people aren’t here…….
July 24th, 20112:23 pm
It seems the narrative that the Obama press loyalists have spread is that the Reps are not negotiating. The opposite seems to be true. It’s Obama and his buddies who are insisting on their way or the highway. Has the senate passed ANYTHING?
This is a moment of great shame for the media.
July 24th, 20112:24 pm
josef @ 1:45, I am under the impression you have referred to “G-d” which implies to me a reverence for the god of the Bible. But do correct me if I’m wrong. As I mentioned, I roasted my brains yesterday at the soccer game.
As you can see, the Thulsas of the world work backward, assuming it rained frogs because the Bible says so and then looking for untestable hypotheses as support for “look, it rained frogs on the Egyptians!” This is what happens when you hand metaphors to some folks. Next thing you know, we’re giving friggin’ TAX BREAKS to Ark replicas touted as “museums.”
July 24th, 20112:26 pm
Bruno, I said that on this blog most on the left appear to be atheists or non-believers in one form or another. I agree that it’s not a left/right issue nationally. I have seen one statistical study that indicated that most on the so called hard left tend to be atheists and most on the right tend to be Christian believers but that leaves a lot of Americans in the middle.
July 24th, 20112:29 pm
Did I once claim “The Bible” was historically accurate? I simply made the point that once we enter the realm of recorded history, it does reflect the generally accepted recorded events fairly accurately. I did not put Moses and talking snakes into the realm of recorded history. I put it in the transition from the mythological to the legendary. Once we move on to the Babylonian exile, we begin to move from the legendary into the historical. Firey furnaces and lions? Probably not, probably legendary and metaphorical. Nebuchadnezzar, Cyrus and company, historical…
July 24th, 20112:31 pm
Del and Bruno,
I have to agree with Bruno’s take on this issue of religion and political stance. I have a large extended family which, although mostly raised in the Catholic religion, has been quite receptive of those marrying into the family from other faiths, and, by the way, from a number of different political persuasions. On Christmas Eve, you would find Catholics, Protestants, Mormons, Atheists, Agnostics and my cousin, David, whose father was a New York Jew and whose mother was raised Catholic. I think David was raised a bit “confused”. My family also features Sarah Palin admirers, moderates, liberals and old-school conservatives. My Dad was a Nixon supporter and despised Harry Truman. And my dad and I very rarely agreed on anything. In my family, at least, there was no connection between religious and political affiliations.
July 24th, 20112:32 pm
And……My wife, who is a Buddhist, is a huge fan of the Monkees!
Your status as the blog historian has been called into question by some on here. I however will still defer to your discerning judgment on all things historical- unless it regards college football history in which case your ass is then on my turf!
Matter of fact next time someone says the bible is not to be trusted as a reference in terms of history, anthropology, archaeological evidence I will now counter with “Josef says so. So that ends that”. Seriously though I have indeed read the same things though as what you state about the chickasaws- that biblical stories such as the great flood story are oddly retold in far flung cultures throughout the world. Coincidence? I think not.
July 24th, 20112:33 pm
My use of “G-d” comes from my tradition and is used whenever I refer to the Alm-ghty, regardless of the tradition from which it springs. I do the same when discussing American Indian belief systems in reference to the Gr-at Sp-rit. It is a recognition that no one knows the name…i.e. no one has a patent on the truth…
July 24th, 20112:37 pm
That post to Bruno should have been to you.
July 24th, 20112:40 pm
A little off topic, but not really.
“Most of the American revolutionaries believed that their war against the
was backed by God. Benjamin Franklin asked: ‘If a sparrow cannot fall to the
without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid?’
the War of Independence, Congress approved the purchase of 20,000 Bibles
to distribute to citizens. Six of the 13 original states had an established
Central government funded missionary activity among Native Americans. The
’separation’, ‘church’ and ’state’ were not put into the Constitution. Any
the Founders inserted into the Constitution with reference to faith was
to protect churches from interference by the state, not the other way
the American Revolution was full of Enlightenment ideas and language, the
citizen remained closer in spirit to the Puritans than to the Jacobins of
“American society changed greatly in the early 19th century. Better
industrialisation turned some settlements into cities and others into
Mass immigration undermined community cohesion; urban growth brought sin.
crime and public drunkenness were common. Wage-slavery and debt became a
of life for a people for whom the American dream meant being an independent
It was in reaction to this confusion that there emerged the definitive
revival movement, one that set the themes and modes of modern US politics.
“From the 1790s to the 1840s there was a remarkable explosion of revivalist
called the Second Great Awakening. It favoured new churches over the old and
number of Baptist and Methodist preachers tripled. Millennarian- ism
One centre of intense activity was upstate New York, which earned the title
Burned-over District because there was nobody left to convert by the end of
period. In that region the Millerites preached that Jesus would return on
22nd, 1844. When the day fell it became known as the Great Disappointment,
reasons. The Shakers rejected clergy and lived in communes, banning marriage
practicing strict celibacy (in 1840 their denomination boasted 6,000
there are only three). Perhaps the most patriotic denomination was the
Saints movement [which was founded in New York and later moved to Utah],
believed that Jesus had actually walked on American soil.
“In 1829 an English tourist, Frances Trollope, visited a revivalist camp
in Indiana. She was horrified by what she saw. Fifteen clergymen preached
people in rotation from Tuesday to Saturday. They passed through tents, all
‘were strewn with straw, and the distorted figures that we saw kneeling,
and lying amongst it, joined to the woeful and convulsive cries, gave to
air of a cell in Bedlam.’ Although the tents were segregated by race,
that preachers attended to as many blacks as whites. She was particularly
by the presence of women. …
“Trollope concluded that such behaviour in England would result in ‘instant
… not to mention the salutary discipline of the treadmill’. Revivalism
through England too, but Anglican and Catholic critics noted that the
of a national church seemed to temper its influence upon government. A
of too much freedom and too much faith, in their estimation, created a
Author: Tim Stanley
Title: “To Build a Shining City on a Hill”
Publisher: History Today
Date: November 2010
July 24th, 20112:41 pm
Mt take on religions…….most folks were “raised” into one or the other……and religions preach pro-creation mainly for the survival of said religion………..
July 24th, 20112:42 pm
Nebuchadnanezzar- the Babylonian king symbolized by gold in the book of Daniel
Cyrus and the Medo- Persian empire- symbolized by silver in the book of Daniel
Alexander and the Greeks- symbolized by bronze in the book of Daniel
The Romans- the 4th kingdom symbolized by Iron in Daniel to rule over what was Babylon.
I could go but but like ya said Joseph the Bible talks about all these kingdoms which were in fact quite real.
July 24th, 20112:44 pm
As for coincidence…I suggested earlier that an intolerance of ambiguity could lead one to conclude that there is something or someone out there that could have accounted for all that we observe in our universe. Human kind simply cannot tolerate not knowing something so essential as the existential; therefore, we tend to believe in a creator. But as for other so called historical “events” such as a “Great Flood”, I recall t hat a number of different cultures seem to believe there was a Great City of Atlantis, too. No, not Atlanta.
And then there’s The Book of Esther…
July 24th, 20112:59 pm
Really got to run now. Great, great discussions today. Amazing what happens when certain people aren’t here…….
Here’s what I find interesting….there are CERTAIN people who want desperately to disprove something THEY don’t believe in to begin with.
Why bother? Just hang out with non-believers….then the group can wax philosophical till their heart’s content….like a bunch of “Discardees”, don’tcha know.
July 24th, 20113:03 pm
the real world is calling…i’ll catch up later..
July 24th, 20113:11 pm
Atlantis? I believe I had a beer at that bar. Just can’t remember what city it was in. It was a beer or one of them froo froo drinks with an umbrella.
July 24th, 20113:15 pm
i.e. no one has a patent on the truth…
Josef, if the truth was worth any cash, us ‘Mericans would have registered it long ago, lol. But thanks for the clarification on G-d and Gr-at Sp-rit and so forth. Still, because an ancient book mentions generally accepted facts doesn’t give it much weight as a historical text, especially as it often misstates and distorts other facts Mentioning a figure such as Herod the Great doesn’t mean a lot when you hang crazy stuff on him, IMHO.
I’ve had Beat season tickets dating back to the WUSA.
Ah, Kam, those were the days! I loved those games! Players like Sun Wen and Homare Sawa honing their skills against world-class….wait, that last one kinda bit us in the rear at the World Cup, lol. For the current games, a friend of mine has the flexi passes you can exchange for general admission tickets, and we obnoxiously appropriate seats in the empty sections of the West stands. That usually works. Until there’s a sellout, anyhow. If you’ve ever had to shoo a sweaty woman in red tie-dye shirt out of your seat, sorry.
July 24th, 20113:17 pm
Just What I Needed & Normal:
“Also, no one thinks of it as containing the word of God or Jesus or used it to establish a religion. Just a minor little small overlooked point.”
And you missed my point. That particular post wasn’t about theology ………. it was about the historical record.
If you want to debate theology, “Without faith it is impossible to please God.”
July 24th, 20113:18 pm
carlosgvv @ 11:26am
I hear you.
You will never be able to look me in the eye and say I didn’t try to help you.
July 24th, 20113:23 pm
This will be interesting especially in lieu of the “sports signs” that are allowed. I wonder if they allow blue/gold stars in the window ?
Headline: ” Marine’s parents sued over sign of support in their Bossier City front yard.”
A south Bossier City homeowners association has sued to force a family to remove a front yard sign supporting their son’s military service because it violated subdivision covenants.
The Times reports that the Gardens of Southgate filed the suit this month against Timothy and Jodi Burr, who have lived in the subdivision since 2006. The Burrs placed a large multicolored banner with a picture of their 20-year-old son, Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Corey Burr, and the phrase “Our son defends our freedom” in January after Corey Burr was deployed to Afghanistan.
Jodi Burr says her family will fight the suit and do not intend to remove the sign.
An attorney representing the association, declined to comment.
The Burrs contend signs supporting a school or team are visible throughout the neighborhood.
July 24th, 20113:28 pm
Fans want to know if Amy Winehouse died of natural causes. Authorities just say no-no-no.
July 24th, 20113:29 pm
Headline: “In the Heart of Dixie, Alabama Still Collects Tax for Confederate Veterans”
“The last of the more than 60,000 Confederate veterans who came home to Alabama after the Civil War died generations ago, yet residents are still paying a tax that supported the neediest among them.”
Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/07/24/in-heart-dixie-alabama-still-collects-tax-for-confederate-veterans/#ixzz1T3KZeMn2
July 24th, 20113:33 pm
You just aint right. Still hilarious though!
July 24th, 20113:34 pm
Some homeowners associations boards are like the communists. Power hungry and wanting total control I tell ya.
July 24th, 20113:44 pm
What do you think about the new “Do Ass, Do Tail” ?
Hung Out to Dry
July 24th, 20113:50 pm
When is Scout going to announce his coming out party. “Do Ass, Do Tail”
July 24th, 20113:57 pm
Your 1408: I don’t try to convert anyone to my belief(or in your opinion, the lack of them), but I have always asked questions and searched for answers. As I have said many times before I feel that “Religions” are no more than cults, invented by man for some kind of control over others, and are the worst thing that can happen to the enlightenment of man with unnecessary rules and quilts. I say this with the possible exception of Judaism, which to me is more than a religion because it also embodies a people.
The End of Times that the Religions fear so much will be the time when mankind finally realizes that the worship of God is a personal and private thing that needs no churches or symbols to accomplish. There is only one God. I will revere Him in my own way, every day, quietly, personally and without fanfare or ceremony.You really don’t need mega churches, cathedrals or even tents to worship your God. Deep inside you is your own church.
I am not an atheist but I do not believe in religion.
July 24th, 20114:00 pm
…Anyway, getting ready to head downtown. Headed to Shakespeare Tavern to see the Complete Works of said Bard done by three or four guys in two hours…talk about your miracles! Ought to be fun.
July 24th, 20114:04 pm
There is only one God. I will revere Him in my own way, every day, quietly, personally and without fanfare or ceremony.
Deep inside you is your own church.
Was He there when your body engaged in that Crisco Party you mentioned awhile back?
Jay called earlier using his rented satellite phone and asked me to try to get his blog back on topic in his absence. And even if he had not called…
I hope you are using barb-less hooks, and are practicing catch-and-release, Jay.
Let’s be realistic here; a man has to eat, and I don’t see a Burger King in that photo.
July 24th, 20114:06 pm
What do you think about the new “Do Ass, Do Tail” ?
Jay called again; suggested “Do Fin, Do Gill”
July 24th, 20114:08 pm
Yes, I know who Joseph Campbell is and I know the importance of understanding myth in order to clearly see how parts of our culture developed. My point is that there are people, some of them here, who do not seem to know the difference between fact and myth. This is not only foolish but can be dangerous. For example, today’s news reports Afghan insurgents recently hung an eight year old boy, in the name of Allah, no doubt.
What makes you think jay’s really on vacation. I mean…look at the heading:
Gone fishing … literally
That’s what he does here everyday.
Was He there when you fornicated the first time?
July 24th, 20114:09 pm
Self-righteous travel agent booking a guilt trip on the shame train.
July 24th, 20114:13 pm
I want you to look me in the eye and tell me you honestly think hard fact and Christian faith are one and the same.
July 24th, 20114:15 pm
If you put on your wide-angle 3D glasses and dial your decoder ring to 420 you will be able to view the rest of the photo. Yes, just to the left of the folding chairs that is indeed the Pink Pony RV; Motel 6; and Cracker Barrel.
July 24th, 20114:18 pm
July 24th, 2011
Was He there when you fornicated the first time?
“Hold on, there’s a flag on the play. Looks like a 15 yarder for excessive crassness.”
July 24th, 20114:20 pm
i wouldn’t argue with much of what you say about distortions and misstatements…sort of like Charles and Mary Beard…or for that matter the standard fifth grade history texts…
And Unmentionable says to extend you an invitation to the next session of “How Many Angels Can Dance on the Head of a Pin…” that you’d find yourself in like company…
July 24th, 20114:22 pm
Was He there when you fornicated the first time?
I was a virgin when I married…on a hiatus from church but still holding firm in the principles I learned there.
Now this is where you get to ridicule me for THOSE principles. After doing so, you can answer my question.
Great, great discussions today. Amazing what happens when certain people aren’t here…….
Anyone with even a little self control should be capable of having a good discussion no matter who is or isn’t here.
July 24th, 20114:26 pm
Thunderous applause and raucous cheering for Mick’s 1:31…
I can’t force him on the train, nor am I looking to throw him under it.
July 24th, 20114:32 pm
Fishin’? For a solid week?
I mean, I’d have trouble doing any one thing for a week at a time, but fishin’?
July 24th, 20114:33 pm
You must bear in mind that often in these situations you are talking to those who prayed to the Judeo-Christian G-d for a bicycle and didn’t get one, and have been pissed off ever since. So, I did and I got one. Who’s right?
July 24th, 20114:36 pm
The sordid details of Amy Winehouse’s final hours emerged today, with claims that she bought a cocktail of narcotics including cocaine, ecstasy and ketamine.
And to think, that at first report of her passing I thought it had to be the One-A-Day multivitamin.
July 24th, 20114:37 pm
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