Saturday, March 23, 2013

Reddit AskHistorians

Reddit 'AskHistorians' should be a place where people get accurate answers to questions about history. However, when the hypothetical question, 'If there are any experts on volcano deification, could they tell me whether or not these Biblical verses fit with volcano worship?' the first response seemed to come from not a historian with any sense but from a complete hothead called 'brigantus' acting on emotion and prejudice with this laughable knee-jerk reaction...

Is "volcano deification" a thing? I've never heard of a society worshipping volcanoes apart from as a cliche in popular culture depictions of 'primitives', which itself is based on a misinterpretation of Hawaiian religion.

He's never heard of a society worshipping volcanoes and he claims to be a historian of some sort? When am I ever going to come across a so called expert who is an honest and sensible expert?

He was then provided with a long list of civilisations that worshipped imaginary volcano gods but conveniently ignored it and continued to dismiss the idea anyone could ever have worshipped a volcano god or that any volcano could ever have inspired ancient people to invent a volcano god. Not only that but his comments were massively upvoted, obviously by the loyal band of dishonest 'historians' who have no shame but plenty of ego. The thread, despite having eighty-two comments, was quickly 'cleaned up' for some reason, leaving only four comments. Obviously there was a lot of comment history that had to be erased, history obviously not being of much importance to 'historians' on Reddit.

Brigantus was not finished with me though and created another thread in the subreddit 'BadHistory', parading himself like a peacock in front of his buddies as the man who defended history. Unfortunately for him, he soon realised he should have looking into the subject prior to branding me a fool. He all of a sudden stopped being his cocky self, refused to debate any further (after I asked several questions that could only have resulted in an 'Ok, I was wrong' answer and slithered away.

The following article was the one that very easily rubbed his nose in his own dirt.... should not only learn how to apologise to women you have so obviously been ungentlemanly towards but you should also change your username to Biganus. It would suit you better.

I have, of course, been banned from AskHistorians because they do not want to be shown up again but someone who knows more about the history of volcano worship than they do. Their bad history must be defended from the facts. Welcome to the list of Enemies of Free Speech.

This test of moral courage and the failures of it will make for a fascinating historical story. The list of people who should know and who probably do know but who put everything before saying they do know seems as endless as it is prestigious.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Bible Trumpet Sound

Bible verses on trumpet sounds.
  1. Exodus 19:13
  2. There shall not an hand touch it, but he shall surely be stoned, or shot through; whether it be beast or man, it shall not live: when the trumpet soundeth long, they shall come up to the mount.
    Exodus 19:12-14 (in Context) Exodus 19 (Whole Chapter) Other Translations
  3. Exodus 19:16
    And it came to pass on the third day in the morning, that there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud upon the mount, and the voice of the trumpet exceeding loud; so that all the people that was in the camp trembled.
    Exodus 19:15-17 (in Context) Exodus 19 (Whole Chapter) Other Translations
  4. Exodus 19:19
    And when the voice of the trumpet sounded long, and waxed louder and louder, Moses spake, and God answered him by a voice.
    Exodus 19:18-20 (in Context) Exodus 19 (Whole Chapter) Other Translations
  5. Exodus 20:18
    And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking: and when the people saw it, they removed, and stood afar off.
    Exodus 20:17-19 (in Context) Exodus 20 (Whole Chapter) Other Translations
This list above is just a small proportion of trumpet sound Bible verses. Most refer either to real musical trumpets or they refer back to the above trumpet sounds.

As part of the theory God was an imaginery volcano god, the trumpet sound at Mt Sinai was the noise made
by the volcano as it erupted.

Sounds from volcanic processes (also known as volcano acoustics) that occur before an eruption primarily come from the pressurization of magma bodies in cracks and conduits, bubble explosions, and the resonating superheated hydrothermal systems near the surface of a volcano. As magma ascends, moving toward the surface, gases build pressure within the magma, forcing cracks and dikes to open and expand through the overlying rocks. The high pressures associated with the gas-rich magma within these cracks, pipes and conduits can cause the volume to resonate similar to a pipe organ.

The Rational Approach to Divine Origin of Judaism REVIEW

The following text is my review of the video, The Rational Approach to Divine Origin of Judaism...

Please forgive my slapdash review, which was written as the video was playing.

For starters, I don't like this man's voice. It's forced, fake and loud. It has the hallmarks of someone saying little of importance but with lots of self importance.

This man says he's come up with an algorithm that can work out all religions in seconds. This man thinks a lot of himself! He also has a low opinion of the minimum complexity of an algorithm. Algorithm...A step-by-step problem-solving procedure, especially an established, recursive computational procedure for solving a problem in a finite number of steps.' Well, he hasn't devised an algorithm at all.

He says Judaism comes up as the only religion of a god who presented himself to more than one person. However, at Mt Sinai, the masses were told to not touch the mount or go up it or they would be 'shot through'. Some people have suggested that was because there were 'holy' marksmen with bows and arrows at the ready to shoot dead anyone who dared to touch the mountain. In fact, 'shot through' meant hit by a 'fiery dart' or ball of brimstone from the volcano, which is what Mt Sinai was.

Moses was the one to 'meet with god'. He was some sort of pyschopath (he had already commited murder) who wanted to lord it about the Hebrews and be the top honcho. He had the brovado to scale the mount, returning to the foot of it with a flushed face, which he hid with a scarf. It was obviously hot up there. The 40 days and 40 nights thing is just was the god narrative.

Picture the scene...the Hebrews spot a pillar of smoke by day and a pillar of smoke by night (volcano) in the distance and it appears to move as they meander about (distant constants do seem to move if you change direction), they arrive at it (at which point 'the lord' is said to look like a fire on the top of the mountain) and are so awestruck they get all spooked and mesmerised.

The algorithm doesn't work because Moses was obviously making it up. He went up to the top of the mountain and hung about for a bit, thinking up a list of rules to apply to the gang of naive people who had followed him. The actual text will have been written long after the event so do not expect it to be accurate. The god narrative was added later by priests who were part of the system...the industry....the machine.

Moving on with the video The Rational Approach to Divine Origin of Judaism....

At timeline 22:01 'People are gullible and given a charismatic leader, they will believe long as the lie cannot be checked.'

How would a group (how many in it we do not know but we cannot assume scripture is accurate...probably is in fact exagerated just like the longevity of the patriarchs to make the religion sound more impressive) be able to check whether or not a big shot man was telling the truth about there being a man-god at the top of the mountain if the big shot had told them to not go up the mountain under any circumstances? They had to take him on his word.

People will believe anything....especially extremely supersititous people who were easily spooked by the natural world. There is no word for 'volcano' in the Bible because the ancients didn't know what a volcano was. The only references to volcanoes you will find are also references to 'god' or his abode.

The ancient Hebrews were pre-conditioned to believe Moses's account of the theophany. They automatically believed him. They were seriously spooked by the erupting volcano. They were going to be seriously excited and like sponges for lies. The threat of death for disbelief must also have been an added persuasion.

Believing volcano gods gave clans laws was not unusual. Most of the world then was worshipping imaginery volcano gods and they all had sets of laws to keep them in tow. If you believe the Sinai theophany then you have to believe in all volcano gods because there is nothing different about it. They even sacrificed animals at the base of Mt Sinai and Yahweh apparently liked the smell of burning flesh. Do you believe a genuine god would like the smell of burning flesh? I have come across a lot of Christians who would argue that one until they were blue in the face and the scholarly interpretations are so wildly laughable it makes me wonder what their motives are and what wacky backy they must be smoking to turn blood letting into something admirable and worshippable.

The author of the video is now going on and on about how Judaism has survived thus far due to the meme 'Our ancestors heard god speak!'.

The ancient Hebrews did not need to hear anyone speak at Mt Sinai. They just needed to see the fire, smoke and brimstone balls and hear the thunder. That's it...they were convinced a god lived in the mount. ALL ancients believed there was a god who lived in erupting 'mountains of fire'. They did not need to hear the god say anything. The sights and sounds of a volcano were enough to convince them. The god narrative was added later.

'Anything that is normal will happen more than once'

Yes, that is likely. More than once groups of nomadic ancient people have falsely believed volcanoes (Holy Hills) were inhabited by resident deities. In fact, history repeats itself so often there are still people in this world who throw live animals into volcanoes, falsely believing they can appease them. Everywhere in the world where volcanoes or seismic activity is prevalent, there are signs of volcano worship....pyramids being notable. (Bare in mind Mt Sinai was in Arabia and not the Sinai Peninsular).

Now he is claiming that Judaism is unique (in the last 4000 years) because it is the only religion in which god was said to speak to a group of people. Well, he is wrong. How did history's imaginery volcano gods set their laws and make their faithful clans abide by them if they did not also have tweaked oral tradition that slipped in a god narrative?

Then he goes into odds and dice...what are the chances of this happening again.....god talking to a group of people?

Oh dear. I did an engineering degree. It was the wrong degree for me. I should have done something more human. This man is a theology student I believe. He should have done an engineering degree. He puts a lot of effort into making himself sound like a mathematician and uses words like algorithm to make things sound more complex. He attempts to make religion a mathematical puzzle that can be worked out with statistical analysis. In fact, maybe he should have done an acting degree or a marketing degree.

This is an all too typical mental responce to an over-trained eye in religious studies. Normally it can be seen in the ultra religious acting in a Complusive Obsessive Disordered way....trying to work out Bible code by adding up numbers of letters and finding sequences and ludicrous life wasting things like that. Totally mad. This man is heading that way. He thinks religions can be validated or falsified simply by devising an algorithm or working out probability odds.

Oh dear again.

What is, as far as I can see, almost entirely absent from the study of religion is an empathic study of the human mind. This man doesn't talk about how people thought back in ancient times, he doesn't say what their knowledge limiations were, he doesn't say how they reacted to the natural environment, etc. You would have thought all these elements are of no consequence and that all that matters is a mathematical equation as though the components were machines and not people.

This man has tried to find the needle in the haystack to prove the religion's validity. He's found these tiny little bits, created a dynamic video and added his loud, forceful and egotistical voice to bolster his argument. If you were to take away the dynamism of the video, take away the over-acted voice...what would you have left? Not a lot.

Yahweh was said to talk to a bunch of desert nomads whereas no god in histiory has ever been said to talk to his people before? Has he studied all of history's gods? Do we even have written records of what other clans did, saw, heard? Of course we don't, but logic tells us that clans in the past had laws and showed obedience to their made-up gods, so these gods must have been said to have passed on their laws or spoken to their people in some way. The Wizard of Oz is a good example....talking from behind the curtain via loud speaker.

What else is there in his over-dramatised argument? That the odds are high. Hmmmm.....a weak argument made to sound robust. He says, 'We can say this in laymens' terms or mathematical terms'. This man is up himself. Laymen meaning people not as brilliant as he. He falsely sees himself as a mathematician despite the maths he uses being so basic it wouldn't stump a kid. What is really needed is more 'laymen' and less 'mathematician', or should I say 'fake mathematician'?

This video is only good at conveying one thing....that the maker thinks far too much of himself. He loves the sound of his own voice, he makes claims of his own brilliance ('this algorithm I invented') and is only memorable for his utter neglect of the one thing that could and will solve this puzzle once and for undertsanding of human nature, in particular the mindset of the ancient people. All that is required is a capacity for empathy, an open mind and an honest heart that aims to discover the truth no matter what it is.

To conclude, the rational approach to divine, or lack of, origin is to think in human terms, putting yourself into the sandals of the ancient awestruck desert nomads.

The Rational Approach to Divine Origin of Judaism is in fact totally irrational.