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Mae
Reply with quote  #31 
Here is NT Wright talking about hell


idunno
Reply with quote  #32 
Well that was interesting. Mae, if this is your view would you be willing to discuss this in a new thread?
jbiemans
Reply with quote  #33 
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I haven't looked at annihilation theology so I couldn't comment on it but I think eternal life is epic.

I would probably loose my mind after a few millenia.

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As far as Christ's suffering compared to Peter's I think the significant aspect of His suffering has to do with Him being forsaken on the cross, which Peter wasn't.

I am not sure what you mean by "him being forsaken" ?  Jesus dying on the cross was all part of the plan wasn't it ?

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And I still don't really see how you could be convinced that a miracle has occurred when there are virtually endless naturalistic possibilities. 

Which is why I have not been convinced that a miracle has occurred.

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And when I look at the cross I can't help but think that God has earned my worship, though one could say that He doesn't have to earn it, but still.

I am not sure how Jesus earned your worship by the cross ?  

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Sorry for the structure and brevity of my reply. 

NP
Lawlessone777
Reply with quote  #34 
Sorry about breaking your post down, JB, as I complain about fisking in other threads, but I'd like to respond to your inquiries and it's really the only way to coherently do it.

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I would probably loose my mind after a few millenia.

This is to say that you would go crazy from the mindset of a contingent being who exists in a realm with other contingent beings. I actually had this problem fairly early on and really considered it. What could I possibly do for an infinite amount of time? Wouldn't I get bored?

Well I thought about it for a long time and eventually considered the fact that as a contingent being whose very existence is built within the framework of time, of course I would be bored. There is only a certain amount of time I can have to enjoy things, so to devote too much time to something is detrimental. I've thus far sunk 130 hours of gameplay into a game called Skyrim. lol

But as an infinite being who does not age, get hungry, or tired, and who is infinite in life my priorities would drastically change. "How long", in Heaven, wouldn't be a concern. I wouldn't be in heaven for "millions of years" because time would be utterly irrelevant to something that is infinite. I wouldn't think to myself, "I've been here for millions of years," the question of how long, or how much more long, would simply be something I wouldn't conceive as a soul.

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I am not sure what you mean by "him being forsaken" ?  Jesus dying on the cross was all part of the plan wasn't it ?

Ever wonder why on the cross Jesus cried, "Father why have you forsaken me?" That was a strange verse if ever there was one, and it was explained later in the Bible. When Jesus was crucified he was suffering punishment for everyone. Every bad thing that had ever happened was put onto him and he was tortured in turn for that evil. And so looking on what, at that moment, was an abomination in God's eyes God turned his face from his son for only a brief moment and completely and utterly forsook him.

The Christian version of Hell is not little red imps poking you with knives, but rather is complete abandonment from God. And so Jesus felt the greatest horror one can ever experience, one reserved only for those in Hell, which is God turning away from him, forsaking him, and removing his love from him.

Now you may not think this is that big of a deal, but that's because despite your non-belief at this very moment God is shouting down to you that he loves you more than anything. He sustains you, and wants you to come to him, and will always try his best to remind you that he loves you. You've never experienced true abandonment by God, nor has any human except Jesus and those in Hell. I cannot comprehend how horrible it is, but considering it was used as punishment for literally ever evil thing ever done in the history of the world I could imagine it is likely the most horrific experience one can possibly have.

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Which is why I have not been convinced that a miracle has occurred.

Here's where we come back to our long time discussion about methodologies and the burden of evidence. What you've done is take the supernatural explanation and gave it the title of "last possible case scenario". You're saying that anything, even things which are unknown and unexplainable, literally everything and anything that you could possibly think of, no matter how illogical or impossible, is better than a supernatural explanation.

So what you've done is quite literally veto supernatural explanations from ever taking place in your mind. What you're telling us is that you are completely unwilling to ever believe a supernatural event has taken place, because you're even willing to postulate the possibility of a naturalistic explanation and take that above a supernatural one.

And so because of that it's obvious that what you're doing is precluding the supernatural by choice. It's not that you won't believe, it's that you don't want to believe.

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I am not sure how Jesus earned your worship by the cross ?  

Jesus was a morally perfect person. In fact he was literally a perfect person, he was God incarnate. He was all power, all loving, all knowing, and ultimate in every regard. He could destroy the universe and recreate it a thousand times over again if he wanted to, just by snapping his fingers. He is pure and complete love.

And so God creates this land of creatures that he wishes to be in contact with. He wants us to come to heaven with him freely of our own choosing, and to be with him there so we can rejoice and be glad for all eternity. He breathes life into us and fills the world with his beauty and love, then cuts us loose and guides us like a father guides his children. He's given us everything, his love, his guidance, and his affection.

So what do we do? We rape each other and force others to please us, we torture each other and cut people up for the fun of it. We slaughter others en mass simply because they're slightly different from us. We curse and spit in the face of God time and time again, even though all he ever did was give us life. We're the worst kind of children a parent can have, because not only do we do evil for the sake of doing evil, but we have the audacity to blame our creator for our mistakes and curse his name for our own misdeeds. It's horrifying, really, when you see the world as it is.

So what does God do? He's completely justified in just deleting the whole planet and starting from scratch. He can just unmake us all and start again, why should he even bother allowing us to continue existing? So he decides, instead of deleting us, he'll give us one last final chance, and his son volunteers to do the deed. His son comes down and teaches us the right way to live, he teaches us to love one another and to give of ourselves while asking nothing in return. God himself came down and had a beer with us, just for the sake of sitting us down and patiently explaining things one more time.

So what do we do? How do we respond when God comes down? We torture him, mock him, spit in his face, we brutally savage him and nail him to a cross while tossing insults at him. Why? Because he told us he was who he was. And so not only do we discover afterwards that he was God, but we discover he knew that we were going to kill him. He knew we were going to torture him to death, and he anticipated it. He anticipated to the point that he took that torture and murder and used it to save us all.

I mean, my God, after learning that how could I not do anything but worship and adore Jesus? He knowingly and willingly took all of the evil things I've ever done in my life, and paid the price for them when he never needed to.

To quote William Lane Craig: "I'm filled completely with wonder and admiration for Gods patience when I consider that he willingly supplies the very breath the atheist needs to blaspheme his very name."
jbiemans
Reply with quote  #35 
Quote:
Sorry about breaking your post down, JB, as I complain about fisking in other threads, but I'd like to respond to your inquiries and it's really the only way to coherently do it.

No problem, I actually prefer quotes so I can see exactly what you are responding to.

I've wanted to try skyrim, but I have not gotten around to it yet =) .  I agree that with an infinite amount of time, time could loose its meaning, but also; after a an infinite amount of time, you could essentially do every conceivable thing an infinite amount of times.  I don't know about you, but sometimes I get bored even watching the same movie twice.  It would not be the amount of time that would bother me so much as the limited amount of things with which to spend that time.



As for God turning away from Jesus, if even for a second, I could accept this as reasonable except for the doctrine of the trinity.  If Jesus was in fact God himself, then it would be impossible for God to turn away from Jesus, it would in essence be God turning away from himself, which is an impossible contradiction.

If you remove the trinity, then it makes much more sense.  If Jesus is simply the son of God and not God directly, then it this part of the story makes much more sense.  I cannot begin to think that God removing his love from me would actually be any kind of horror or anything negative at all.  To me, I don't see any evidence of God's love at all, so it would be no change from now.

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And so because of that it's obvious that what you're doing is precluding the supernatural by choice. It's not that you won't believe, it's that you don't want to believe.

And again, I must go back to that discussion and the unresolved points: (again, you are reading too much into things and accusing me of things I am not guilty of, I must spend time defending myself rather then discussing the issues).

1) Miracles to me have the lowest prior probability in my assessments for probability, so they will require a greater weight to make them the most probable.  I do this, not because of some inherent bias against miracles, and not because I don't want to believe, but rather because I have 0 prior experience with miracles.  Just like you (and I) would give aliens a really low prior probability because you have 0 prior experience with aliens actually existing.

2) Miracles are by definiton exceptionally rare events, so by definition they must require a very low prior probability of happening.  If I allowed for miracles to begin with a higher prior probability, I would be forced to assume that everything was the result of a miracle.  How does my car work ? miracle!  How does my computer work ? miracle!, etc, etc.  Clearly it is not productive to knowledge to operate this way, so as such, 

I start miracles with the probabilities they deserve due to their rare nature, and my lack of experience with them.  I think that if you were honest with yourself, you would see that you do the same for every other miracle claim, except for the ones attested to in the bible.

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Jesus was a morally perfect person. In fact he was literally a perfect person, he was God incarnate. He was all power, all loving, all knowing, and ultimate in every regard. He could destroy the universe and recreate it a thousand times over again if he wanted to, just by snapping his fingers. He is pure and complete love.

This is just flat out false.  There are things that Jesus did not know, and there were many things that Jesus could not do.  Generally these limitations are attributed to the fact that Jesus was within a Human nature and thus limited.  If this is the case, then Jesus did not posses all the "all" attributed you listed.  Also if he did, then it would have been impossible for him to have actually died.

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So what does God do? He's completely justified in just deleting the whole planet and starting from scratch.

Didn't he try that once with Noah, and it did not come out better the second time.

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Matthew 10:34. "Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword.

35 "For I have come to 'set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law';

36 "and 'a man's enemies will be those of his own household.'


Quote:
So what do we do? How do we respond when God comes down? We torture him, mock him, spit in his face, we brutally savage him and nail him to a cross while tossing insults at him. Why? Because he told us he was who he was. And so not only do we discover afterwards that he was God, but we discover he knew that we were going to kill him. He knew we were going to torture him to death, and heanticipated it. He anticipated to the point that he took that torture and murder and used it to save us all.

No the Jews mocked, beat and executed Jesus because what he was teaching was blasphemy.  The Jews had been told X by God directly and now this Jesus fellow comes to town and says that you should do Y, not X.  To the people back then this was insane because God himself specifically told them X, so why would he come down now and say Y, especially when God does not change his mind.  They feared that Jesus would turn people away from the proper message of God.  I am sure that you think the same way about the Mormons.

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I mean, my God, after learning that how could I not do anything but worship and adore Jesus? He knowingly and willingly took all of the evil things I've ever done in my life, and paid the price for them when he never needed to.

You say that he paid the price for my evil works, but who is the one who assigned a price tag to it in the first place ?


idunno
Reply with quote  #36 
Aaagh! I get to post from my laptop but now I'm in a hurry.

First, in regards to Christ being forsaken I'm going to copy and paste this from another post of mine.


I said this a while back but I think the key is the moment that Christ is forsaken on the cross. "Eloi Eloi Lama Sabachthani?!" Up to that point, indeed "prior'' to the big bang, the Son had enjoyed perfect unity and communion with the Father. But it would seem at that moment the perfect communion that the Father and the Son have enjoyed since eternity past was broken, there was NO comfort to be had on that cross and thus He quotes from psalm 22. Now when you look at the psalm you get a better idea of this, in fact I'll put verses 1&2
 
"My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from saving me, from the words of my groaning?
O my God I cry by day, but you do not answer,
  and by night, but I find no rest."

The psalm has David expressing his feelings of abandonment by God but concludes with David expressing joy in Gods deliverance. 

Likewise, On the cross, Christ is expressing the same sentiments that we see in verses 1&2. The broken fellowship of the Father and the Son is no small thing, temporary or not. 


Miracles as instances of God interacting with His creation. It seems that you're technically allowing the possibilities of miracles, but in all practicality I don't know if you'd ever be convinced that one had occurred. 

As for Him earning worship, I point to the clarification I made about Him being forsaken. 

That's all I have time for right now. I owe, I owe, it's off to work I go. 
Lawlessone777
Reply with quote  #37 
Quote:
I've wanted to try skyrim, but I have not gotten around to it yet =)

There's a reason why I've sunk so much time into it. lol It's not even a game anymore, it's literally just a virtual world.

Now to respond to your posts, I'm actually going to move away from the discussions on Jesus and his divine nature versus his human nature for a second because I want to focus on miracles. If iDunno, or Archsage is willing to expand upon Jesus I'd love for them to, however in discussing miracles we've now actually stepped into a territory that I'm very strong in, so I feel I can help a lot with this.

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And again, I must go back to that discussion and the unresolved points: (again, you are reading too much into things and accusing me of things I am not guilty of, I must spend time defending myself rather then discussing the issues).

1) Miracles to me have the lowest prior probability in my assessments for probability, so they will require a greater weight to make them the most probable.  I do this, not because of some inherent bias against miracles, and not because I don't want to believe, but rather because I have 0 prior experience with miracles.  Just like you (and I) would give aliens a really low prior probability because you have 0 prior experience with aliens actually existing.

2) Miracles are by definiton exceptionally rare events, so by definition they must require a very low prior probability of happening.  If I allowed for miracles to begin with a higher prior probability, I would be forced to assume that everything was the result of a miracle.  How does my car work ? miracle!  How does my computer work ? miracle!, etc, etc.  Clearly it is not productive to knowledge to operate this way, so as such, 

I start miracles with the probabilities they deserve due to their rare nature, and my lack of experience with them.  I think that if you were honest with yourself, you would see that you do the same for every other miracle claim, except for the ones attested to in the bible.

Here I know exactly whats wrong with your methodology, I'm just trying to find a proper way to articulate it.

My complaint isn't that you're assigning a very low probability to a miraculous event by presupposing a naturalistic explanation versus a supernatural explanation, what my main contention is would be your willingness to embrace "no answer" to "supernatural answer". Let me expand on this a little.

Usually your response, as well as most of the atheists on this boards response, when approached with the four facts of Jesus' death and resurrection as well as the typical arguments in favour of a supernatural explanation, is to state that a naturalistic explanation is far more likely than a supernatural explanation even if there is no natural explanation. The part in bold is the very specific contention I have with how you're approaching miracles.

Let me grab a miracle that I studied for quite some time, the Eucharist Miracle of Lanciano Italy.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miracle_of_Lanciano (The wiki is a bit of a battleground between atheist and theist, so expect to see a lot of citation requests, deleted sections, and outright alteration. Atheists have waged a crusade against this page as of late)

Here we have a pretty fascinating miracle. Basically during the eucharist a priest had doubt in his heart and so the wine turned into blood, and the bread into a human heart. This happened 1300 years ago. The funny thing is, we still have the heart and blood. It's been left in open air and hasn't rotted in 1300 years.

And so I know what you're going to say, obviously it's a fake, some sort of material that won't rot, or one that's replaced every so often. However a scientific examination was done of the heart in 1971 by Professor Odoardo Linoli, Professor in Anatomy and Pathological Histology Now he found a few interesting things while he was examining the tissue. For one it was a real human heart, and real human blood. Secondly the blood had properties and proteins akin to that of blood which had been shed very recently. And finally despite having protein levels akin to freshly shed blood, the blood also had reduced mineral levels akin to blood which had been left out in the open air for a very long time. It was both new, and old blood.

He also noted that the blood type was the same as those of people who lived in ancient Israel. The blood also had no traces of any preservatives, and the blood was not extracted from a corpse.

Then in 1973 the World Health Organization set forth to prove, or disprove Odoardo's findings and performed a series of 500 tests over a 15 month period and all tests confirmed exactly what Odoardo had said. The funny thing was, over that 15 month period and 500 tests the blood and cardiac tissue did not rot, or degrade despite having no preservatives. So even if they doubted the authenticity of the claim that it occurred in 700AD, they had tissue and blood that did not match anything they'd ever had before.

Here's Odoardo Linoli talking about it in 2005:

Whenever I present this miracle I'm always given a few different responses. One is to say that it was obviously faked, that Odoardo obviously is a liar, that the confirmation by the World Health Organization was obviously a conspiracy, and that the Catholic Church obviously murdered someone, ripped out their heart, and gave it to this man. If your kneejerk response is to call "BS", I'd have to ask, with what proof? Here we have a miracle that was put under intense scientific scrutiny, that was independently verified by a third party company and confirmed by many individuals over a period of 15 months and 500 times. It is a scientifically verified miracle without any naturalistic explanation. And if you're going to say, "I want to see this blood and flesh with my own eyes" I'd say of course! It's still on display in Italy, you can go there any time you want, and alongside the miracle they've actually published the scientific reports and confirmation by WHO with signatures and verified authenticity, so you can see those for yourself as well.

So here I'd like to ask, how would you respond to that?
jbiemans
Reply with quote  #38 
I will do some researsh on that tonight, and get back to you.  I want to make sure my response is well researched and thought out.  (although, I am sure you would not want to wait too long for me to do some research).



On a quick reading so far, you are mistaken when you say that it was a heart.  From what I have read, it is a piece of heart tissue.

Quote:
The flesh consists of the muscular tissue of the heart

What made me realize this is that they say the FLESH is the same size as a communion wafer, and from my days back in Catholic church, I realized that it would have been too small to be a whole human heart.  The blood is also in globules and coagulated, which does not mean that its not blood, but its not in the liquid form I was anticipating.
Lawlessone777
Reply with quote  #39 
No problem, I heartily encourage study into this subject. I've also got a ton more miracles of similar calibre and discussion. If you want to study the Lanciano Miracle you should also check out:

Therese Neumann - 1861-1962
Our Lady of Lourdes - 1858
Tilma of Juan Diago - 1474-1578
Padre Pio - 1887-1968
Sun Miracle of Fatima - 1913

There's still a bunch more, but those are my favourites.
jbiemans
Reply with quote  #40 
Just from a quick look, it appears that a majority (or all of these) are catholic miracles, yet you do not appear to follow the Catholic denomination ?

I wonder why anyone has not done a DNA test on this blood. It would be fascinating wouldn't it ?  Especially since it is the blood of Christ ?  
Matthias
Reply with quote  #41 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Archsage
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthias
Quote:
Originally Posted by Archsage
But inquire of yourself, what else, besides God, could be the source for the Universe?

Quantum vacuum. Computer simulation. Modal realism. Brute fact. Dense matter compression. Evil God. Something really crazy that we never would have thought of before finding evidence for it, like most things in physics. Something only moderately crazy or entirely boring that I would have thought of if I spent more than five minutes thinking about it.


Quantum vacuum and dense matter cannot be the source of the Universe -- they entail Universal qualities in and of themselves. I'm not sure what you mean by computer simulation or brute fact, however? And the "Evil God" objection makes such little sense and was argued and explained in here before. I'm sure you were there.

Take time to reason within yourself all the possibilities, including God, and find out for yourself the most plausible or reasonable one.

Quantum vacuum, dense matter, and a computer simulation all definitely imply some pre-existing universe, but there's no reason (at least that I see!) why this extended concept of "universe" couldn't be past-eternal or cyclical. (Obviously the current arrangement of our cosmos, according to our best models, has a definite beginning, but this doesn't mean that the quantum vacuum, and so on, doesn't have a beginning, any more than the current arrangement of the universe having a beginning implies that "everything that exists including God" has a beginning.) [1]

A computer simulation would be our universe being, well, a computer simulation run on some lower-level universe. (Sort of like the Matrix, if you will, but I don't think anything important follows from it.) Obviously this and "Evil God" are somewhat whimsical.

By a brute fact I mean it just is the case that our universe exists in the way that it does. Now, obviously we prefer to posit as few brute facts as possible; we want parsimony in our theories. But unless everything is necessary, there are some brute facts, and most explanations that people have come up with for the origins of the universe don't actually reduce them. They may keep the number of brute facts constant: for instance, if God necessarily exists [2] and freely creates a world (ours), then there's the brute fact that God freely chose it. Some deductively argue that He has a certain nature, and that this nature specifies a uniquely best possible world; if so, we'd be down to an admirable number (zero) of brute facts, but it's incredibly hard for me to imagine that you could specify a utility function that selects our world with less information than it takes to specify our laws of physics and a worldstate at t=0 of infinitely dense tiling with Higgs bosons (or something), much less than that this utility function is necessary. Note that Dr. Craig's argument for why this is the best possible world requires an astronomically huge number of brute facts about necessaries of freedom.)

Considerations like the above are what lead me to believe that modal realism is probably true, since modal realism seems like one of the things that are potentially necessary, and even if not, it takes less information to specify that everything exists (in measure equal to the simplicity with which it can be specified) than to specify our universe alone. (If something like God necessarily exists it seems more likely that She has created every world than our world alone, and more likely that if She freely chose to create only one world it was a relatively simple materialist one.) Likewise, the many-worlds interpretation of quantum physics seems a priori much more likely than (ontological, rather than epistemic) indeterminism, as the latter implies an incomprehensibly large number of brute facts. (Of course it could be the case that many-worlds is false and "random" events are decided by consulting the digits of pi or something.)

[1] With specific respect to the quantum vacuum Lawless has raised germane points about Boltzmann brains, which I think nonetheless fail due to the same considerations that lead me to conclude that it's highly unlikely we're living in a "partial" simulation or dream - we can pursue this further, if you like.

[2] I'm using the "if" in "if... necessarily" here to imply my logical uncertainty. I am familiar with Plantinga's ontological argument, but think it fails precisely on eliding between logical and ordinary uncertainty. Otherwise we could say that God necessarily does not exist because God possibly necessarily does not exist.

Kind regards,
(I'm going to start stealing this from Troy)
Lawlessone777
Reply with quote  #42 
Quote:
Just from a quick look, it appears that a majority (or all of these) are catholic miracles, yet you do not appear to follow the Catholic denomination ?

I actually just picked those from my "standard list" of miracles, and the Catholic ones happen to be on top of the list. There are Protestant ones below them that I could also link. With regards to miracles and the difference between Catholicism and Protestantism I'm of the opinion that God genuinely doesn't care, and it's more of a concern for humans than him. So long as you come to him through his son Jesus Christ I don't imagine he cares if your spiritual leader is wearing jeans and a t-shirt, or a fancy white robe with incense.

You'll find most believers also view it as just a difference in style. I go to a Protestant church because I love the singing and dancing, plus great food and lots of laughs and merriment. I find the Anglican and Catholic ceremonies to be hauntingly beautiful, classical, and very serious. They're really awesome, but in a different way. I prefer my church where one of the girls tends to rock out on an electric guitar during our praise hymms. lol

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I wonder why anyone has not done a DNA test on this blood. It would be fascinating wouldn't it ?  Especially since it is the blood of Christ ?  

It certainly would, and I believe I read somewhere that they did and it matched the blood that was found on the Shroud of Turin. This what somewhat speculative so I've remained an agnostic as to those claims. With regards as to why they haven't done DNA testing on it, the Catholic Church is very cautious about giving out miracles like these to people for testing. There have been events in the past where people have destroyed, desecrated, or burned miracles when given the chance.

Though I remember there was one discussion on another board where someone suggested we could clone the blood and see what happened. lol
jbiemans
Reply with quote  #43 
Quote:
It certainly would, and I believe I read somewhere that they did and it matched the blood that was found on the Shroud of Turin. 

In the article it says that they tested the blood type and it was AB, like the shroud not the DNA.
Lawlessone777
Reply with quote  #44 
Yup, on that article that I linked. I linked it because it's more reliable and less obviously Christian in nature than some of the other ones. When I deal with miracles I try and link secular stuff instead of Catholic or Christian sites. I could link you a few Christian sites that claim everything from DNA comparisons to the Shroud of Turn, all the way down to some Christians who claim that the heart is actually beating.

When I did my study of miracles I had to sit down and fish out the truth from the pile, which was exceedingly difficult considering these are all obviously very emotionally charged situations. The Lanciano Miracle was especially good because they had a third party scientists on board, so I only quote things he directly said.

If I cast my net too wide I'd end up with Virgin Mary Toast, or Jesus Appearing in a dogs butt. I kid you not, that's an actual one:

jbiemans
Reply with quote  #45 
I have seen the Jesus in the dogs butt before.  But the problem with exaggeration and additions are important to me.  Since even in modern times when it is so easy to do research, some people still believe that it was a whole heart, when it is clearly a small patch of heart tissue.

It leads me to think that if people agree with something, they don't do much digging to verify the claims made.  For me, usually I try to catch myself and if I agree with something, I look at it harder in an attempt to overcome my personal bias. (when I can catch myself).
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