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Researchers To Climb Ararat To Seek Noah's Ark 2226

fudgefactor7 writes "CNN/AP has a story about researchers that plan on ascending Mt. Ararat in search of the Ark of Noah. My favorite quote: ''We are not excavating it. We are not taking any artifacts. We're going to photograph it and, God willing, you're all going to see it,' McGivern said.' As if pictures can't be doctored and are absolute proof...."
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Researchers To Climb Ararat To Seek Noah's Ark

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  • Conspiracy (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 26, 2004 @10:35PM (#8979205)
    I don't know which is the bigger scam - attempting to "photograph" this Ark, or the "fact" that is actually exists
  • by tweakt ( 325224 ) * on Monday April 26, 2004 @10:47PM (#8979328) Homepage

    I'm not even going to bother. Those of you with a bit of logic and reasoning skills can already figure the impossibility of the whole idea.

    So, for a some more fun, check out this cute rebuttal [] of the scientific arguments against the story. It boggles the mind how people can accept this as truth.

  • by beacher ( 82033 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @10:48PM (#8979343) Homepage
    Wrong Arc! This one is Noah's.. not the Arc of covenant!
  • by Thunderstruck ( 210399 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @10:50PM (#8979353)
    In the past there have been quite a number of similar investigations:

    1. It was said for many years Pontius Pilate never existed, until digs started turning up roman coins & carvings with his name on them.

    2. It was said that Ur never existed, until they found it a few years ago.

    Up to now, bibilical texts have proven to be a remarkably good resource, and every bit as reliable as other texts from the periods in question. I'm really very interested to see what, if anything this investigation turns up. Biblically the Ark should be less than ten thousand years old, and even myths often start with some grain of truth.
  • by BWJones ( 18351 ) * on Monday April 26, 2004 @10:52PM (#8979383) Homepage Journal
    These explorers will reveal once and for all that the B arc crashed on this planet and we are all ancestors of the Golgafinchan.

    - Never underestimate the power of human stupidity.

    Ah, the sig on this one says it all. Which moderator rated this as Informative? Shame on you!!!! :-)

  • Actually no (Score:1, Informative)

    by unsinged int ( 561600 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @10:55PM (#8979417)
    If I remember correctly, the Turkish government has been fairly hostile in the past to the idea of anyone from outside the country exploring for the ark, plus they've refused to go searching for it themselves. The government allowing a team in to do this is pretty significant.
  • Re:Oh great (Score:2, Informative)

    by eumaeus ( 733945 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @10:57PM (#8979429) Homepage
    Alexander the Great sacrificed at Troy when he invaded Asia in 335 BCE. It was no secret where Troy was. Heinrich Schliemann gets credit for figuring out which of many lumps of dirt in that neighborhood contained an ancient city, but the "Troy" he excavated was far too old to have been the site of a Trojan War. So no one thought "Troy" was a figment of anyone's imagination, and we still dont have any reason to believe the historicity of the war that Homer describes.
  • by Peyna ( 14792 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:00PM (#8979455) Homepage
    The small percentage of the world that are atheist or agnostic

    About 14% [].
  • by gad_zuki! ( 70830 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:03PM (#8979477)

    Noah's Ark

    Noah's Ark is the boat built by the Biblical character Noah. At the command of God, according to the story, Noah was to build a boat that could accommodate his extended family, about 50,000 species of animals, and about one million species of insects. The craft had to be constructed to endure a divinely planned universal flood aimed at destroying every other person and animal on earth (except, I suppose, those animals whose habitat is liquid). This was no problem, according to Dr. Max D. Younce, who says by his calculations from Genesis 6:15 that the ark was 450 feet long, 75 feet wide and 45 feet deep. He says this is equivalent to "522 standard stock cars or 8 freight trains of 65 cars each." By some divine calculation he figures that all the insect species and the worms could fit in 21 box cars. He could be right, though Dr. Younce does not address the issue of how the big boxcar filled with its cargo rose with the rainwater level instead of staying put beneath the floodwaters.

    Those not familiar with the story might wonder why God would destroy nearly all the descendants of all of the creatures he had created. The story is that God was displeased with all of his human creations, except for Noah and his family. Annihilating those one is displeased with has become a familiar tactic of the followers of this and many other gods.

    Despite the bad example God set for Noah's descendants--imagine a human parent drowning his or her children because they were "not righteous"--the story remains a favorite among children. God likes good people. He lets them ride on a boat with a bunch of friendly animals. He shows them a great rainbow after the storm. And they all live happily ever after. Even adults like the story, though they might see it as an allegory with some sort of spiritual message, such as God is all-powerful and we owe everything, even our very existence to the Creator. Furthermore, the Creator expects us to behave ourselves. But there are many who take the story literally.

    According to the story told in chapter 7 of Genesis, Noah, his crew, and the animals lived together for more than 6 months before the floodwaters receded. There are a few minor logistical problems with this arrangement, but before getting to them, there is one other thing that needs commenting on. It is obvious that floods are no laughing matter. The destruction of life and property caused by floods has plagued many animals, not just humans, from time immemorial. To watch one's family or home swept away in floodwaters must be a terrible spectacle. To see one's children drown, one's life and dreams washed away in an instant, must be a devastating experience. But if one were to discover that the flood was not a whimsical effect of chance natural events, not unplanned and purposeless, but rather the malicious and willful act of a conscious being, one might add rage to the feelings of devastation. I suppose one could argue that it is God's world; he created it, so he can destroy it if he feels like it. But such an attitude seems inappropriate for an All-Good, Loving God.

    the "finding" of the Ark

    Yet, as preposterous as this story seems, there are people in the twentieth century who claim they have found Noah's ark. They call themselves "arkeologists." Yes, they say that when the flood receded, Noah and his zoo were perched upon the top of Mt. Ararat in Turkey. Presumably, at that time, all the animals dispersed to the far recesses of the earth. How the animals got to the different continents, we are not told. Perhaps they floated there on debris. More problematic is how so many species survived when they had been reduced to just one pair or seven pairs of creatures. Also, you would think that the successful species that had the furthest to travel, would have left a trail of offspring along the way. What evidence is there that all species originated in Turkey? That's what the record should look like if the ark landed on Mt. Ararat.

    Still, none of t
  • Ark Myth (Score:5, Informative)

    by anphilip ( 737117 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:06PM (#8979507)
    Something that I think gets lost frequently in the Noah's ark discussion is the fact that most relegions have a flood myth in one form or another. Off the top of my head I can recall a Roman myth, a Norse myth, a Chinese myth and a Native (or whatever the politically correct term is) myth that involve the Earth's destruction by a flood followed by a re-building by a man-woman team. Therefore any finding of a boat proves that something majorly wrong involving water and a boat happened early on in human history. We already knew that from geological surveys of the areas where early humans resided, any proof for or against the presence of the ark answers nothing one way or the other for or against the Judeo-Christian point of view.
  • Re:So..... (Score:2, Informative)

    by skzbass ( 719269 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:08PM (#8979523)
    Acutally there was a Nova on this. Around 3000 years ago there was a huge flood creating the black sea. this flood would have created a wall of water high enough to place a boat on top of mt. ararat. e.html
  • by gad_zuki! ( 70830 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:08PM (#8979526)
    >onsistent with archaeological evidence.

    This is simply untrue. Till wrote a good article on the subject: s/tsr/1998 /2/982front.html
    Archaeology and Biblical Accuracy
    Farrell Till

    Has archaeology proven the historical accuracy of the Bible? If you listened only to biblical inerrantists, you would certainly think so. Amateur apologists have spread this claim all over the internet, and in a letter published in this issue, Everett Hatcher even asserted that archaeology supports that "the Bible is the inerrant word of God." Such a claim as this is almost too absurd to deserve space for publication, because archaeology could prove the inerrancy of the Bible only if it unearthed undeniable evidence of the accuracy of every single statement in the Bible. If archaeological confirmation of, say, 95% of the information in the Bible should exist, then this would not constitute archaeological proof that the Bible is inerrant, because it would always be possible that error exists in the unconfirmed five percent.

    Has archaeology confirmed the historical accuracy of some information in the Bible? Indeed it has, but I know of no person who has ever tried to deny that some biblical history is accurate. The inscription on the Moabite Stone, for example, provides disinterested, nonbiblical confirmation that king Mesha of the Moabites, mentioned in 2 Kings 3:4-27, was probably an actual historical character. The Black Obelisk provides a record of the payment of tribute to the Assyrian king Shalmaneser III by Jehu, king of the Israelites (2 Kings 9-10; 2 Chron. 22:7-9). Likewise, the Babylonian Chronicle attests to the historicity of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, and his conquest of Jerusalem as recorded in 2 Kings 25. Other examples could be cited, but these are sufficient to show that archaeology has corroborated some information in the Bible.

    What biblicists who get so excited over archaeological discoveries like these apparently can't understand is that extrabiblical confirmation of some of the Bible does not constitute confirmation of all if the Bible. For example, the fact that archaeological evidence confirms that Jehu was an actual historical character confirms only that he was an actual historical character. It does not confirm the historical accuracy of everything that the Bible attributed to him. Did a "son of the prophets" go to Ramoth-gilead and anoint Jehu king of Israel while the reigning king was home in Jezreel recovering from battle wounds (2 Kings 9:1-10)? Did Jehu then ride to Jezreel in a chariot and massacre the Israelite royal family and usurp the throne (2 Kings 9:16 ff)? We simply cannot determine this from an Assyrian inscription that claimed Jehu paid tribute to Shalmaneser, so in the absence of disinterested, nonbiblical records that attest to these events, it is hardly accurate to say that archaeology has proven the historicity of what the Bible recorded about Jehu. Likewise, extrabiblical references to Nebuchadnezzar may confirm his historical existence, but they do not corroborate the accuracy of such biblical claims as his dream that Daniel interpreted (Dan. 2) or his seven-year period of insanity (Dan. 4:4-37). To so argue is to read entirely too much into the archaeological records.

    The fact is that some archaeological discoveries in confirming part of the Bible simultaneously cast doubt on the accuracy of other parts. The Moabite Stone, for example, corroborates the biblical claim that there was a king of Moab named Mesha, but the inscription on the stone gives a different account of the war between Moab and the Israelites recorded in 2 Kings 3. Mesha's inscription on the stone claimed overwhelming victory, but the biblical account claims that the Israelites routed the Moabite forces and withdrew only after they saw Mesha sacrifice his eldest son as a burnt offering on the wall of the city the Moabites had retreated to (2 Kings 3:26-27). So the Moabite Stone, rather than corro
  • Re:Uhhh (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:11PM (#8979562)
    Carbon dating was already attempted on the ark during a previous expedition. (This was on a history channel special.)

    Well at any rate, a chunk of wook from a tree type not native to the land was carbon dated, results were inconclusive. They blame that the wood was contaminated with younger carbon from the water and ice surrounding it.
  • Re: Doomed to fail (Score:3, Informative)

    by Black Parrot ( 19622 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:12PM (#8979580)

    > I've done a lot of research for school into the search for Noah's ark, and I think this mission is doomed to fail. Every documented mission to find the ark has failed. Three major factors have kept searchers from looking on Mt. Ararat-- #1. The frigid weather, #2. The Turkish Government (security concerns, blah blah blah) #3.Kurdish people who have the nasty habit of killing people who want to go up the mountain.

    Worse, there's not the slightest reason to believe that modern Ararat is the same is the biblical Ararat. (IIRC, the former didn't hold that name until the Middle Ages.)

  • God of the gaps (Score:5, Informative)

    by gad_zuki! ( 70830 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:12PM (#8979583)
    You are falling for the god of the gaps [] fallacy.

    You claim that someplace or something isnt known then it must be the work of the gods. This argument keeps getting killed everytime a rational/scientific explanation comes about for such things as the weather, evolution, gravity, etc.

    Now your just taking the god of the gaps to a friggin mountain. Not terribly convicing.

    So today its a mountain, will your grandchildren be telling us that its in a far off galaxy (just interpret the ark as being a spaceship) when this is debunked/explained? When will the "gappers" stand-down and not take some ancient script as fact, but as interpration of events through the eyes of highly religious and uneducated peoples?
  • The Theroy (Score:4, Informative)

    by skzbass ( 719269 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:13PM (#8979585)
    During the Ice Age, Ryan and Pitman argue, the Black Sea was an isolated freshwater lake surrounded by farmland. ? About 12,000 years ago, toward the end of the Ice Age, Earth began growing warmer. Vast sheets of ice that sprawled over the Northern Hemisphere began to melt. Oceans and seas grew deeper as a result. ? About 7,000 years ago the Mediterranean Sea swelled. Seawater pushed northward, slicing through what is now Turkey. ? Funneled through the narrow Bosporus, the water hit the Black Sea with 200 times the force of Niagara Falls. Each day the Black Sea rose about six inches (15 centimeters), and coastal farms were flooded. ? Seared into the memories of terrified survivors, the tale of the flood was passed down through the generations and eventually became the Noah story. from: e.html
  • Wrong mountain? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Theovon ( 109752 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:15PM (#8979609)
    I have this vague recollection of some Discovery or History Channel show which pointed out that what is today called "Ararat" is not the same mountain as the one the Bible refers to.

    But it's all moot anyway, since the biblical flood is just an adaptation of the Gilgamesh story.
  • Re:Uhhh (Score:5, Informative)

    by dmccarty ( 152630 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:19PM (#8979641)
    Actually, wood brought back from Mt. Arrarat by Fernand Navarra [] was carbon dated, and found to be about 1,700 years old, way too young for it to be from a Biblical ark.

    However, W. F. Libby, inventor of radiocarbon dating, thought that the samples that were tested had been contaminated by their surroundings, and by the rate of decay in high altitude. So nothing has been conclusively shown either way.

  • by microwave_EE ( 768395 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:20PM (#8979653)
    I don't think that writer of the CNN article has --ahem-- RTFB. (Sorry bout that.) In Genesis 8:4 it says that the ark "rested upon the mountains of Ararat." (NASB) Ergo, it did not necessarily rest upon the particular peak that we call "Mount Ararat", but rather upon one of the peaks in that region.
  • by maximino ( 767005 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:20PM (#8979659)
    I call shennanigans on 1. above. Pilate's term as procurator of Judea was well documented by Josephus and Philo (the latter of whom complained to Caligula about his various excesses). In addition there are Roman records of his recall to Vitellius, the legate at Syria, and the subsequent return to Rome to face charges of excessive cruelty, which led to his exile. Plus he was as things stood a minor goverment official and wouldn't have coins or statuary in his image. The claims of the Bible about how Pilate acted in the particular case of the trial of Jesus may be accurate or inaccurate, I can't say -- but no one ever claimed he wasn't a real person, as far as I am aware.
  • by yopie ( 470181 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:21PM (#8979663)
    The [] have the satellite image [] of the object that they suspect the Noah Ark. The enlarge image []can be seen here.
  • Re:Uhhh (Score:3, Informative)

    by Yartrebo ( 690383 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:26PM (#8979711)
    High altitude doesn't effect the decay rate (other than minuscule relativistic effects related to being further outside the gravity well of planet Earth).
  • by superyooser ( 100462 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:31PM (#8979756) Homepage Journal
    Answers in Genesis has an article debunking claims that Noah's Ark is on Mount Ararat []. It should be noted, however, that the Ark explorers they mention are not from the same group as this current expedition mentioned in the CNN article.
    The Main Claims at a Glance

    • Radar shows man-made (boat) structure..........FALSE
    • There is a regular metallic pattern............FALSE
    • Lab tests show petrified laminated wood........FALSE
    • Turkish scientists found metal rods............FALSE
    • Metal artefacts have been proved by lab........FALSE
    • There are 'ship's ribs' showing................FALSE
    • There is lots of petrified wood................FALSE
    • Turkish Commission says 'it's a boat...........FALSE
    After giving a lot of details to back up these verdicts, they conclude with the following statements.
    For the many who had their hopes built up that this may be Noah's Ark, it needs to be kept in mind that the Bible in no way says that Noah's Ark would be preserved as a witness to future generations. Nevertheless, it certainly would be an exciting and powerful testimony to an unbelieving world for the Ark to be found, but if that is to happen it will be unmistakably God's doing in His time and in His way to bring Him the glory.

    In the meantime, as Christians we need to always exercise due care when claims are made, no matter who makes them, and any claims must always be subjected to the most rigorous scientific scrutiny. If that had happened here, and particularly if the scientific surveys conducted by highly qualified professionals using sophisticated instruments had been more widely publicized and their results taken note of, then these claims would never have received the widespread credence that they have.

    There is an enormous amount of evidence for creation and the Flood, so we don't need the Ark to be discovered in that sense.

    Here is AiG's Noah's Ark FAQ [].
  • Re:Uhhh (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:36PM (#8979806)
    Umm.. I think you are perpetuation one of the misconceptions of carbon dating. Carbon dating is only useful for objects less than 10,000 years (or so) old. Lab results for carbon dating should never differ by millions of years.. maybe hundreds of years, but not millions of years.
  • by nil5 ( 538942 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:54PM (#8979939) Homepage
    Okay, I don't think it's right to say evolution is a "doctrine", because it's not. In fact, why would the Church even need to comment on it? Regardless of where we came from, the Church's mission is to evangelize the Good News, etc.

    But more to the point, the Church certainly recognizes that even if evolution is true, it does not contradict our belief.

    My comment: It doesn't affect me, the prostitute or homeless on the street, the people in Iraq, or anyone with any worry in her life whether or not evolution is true! We just want lasting peace, which only Christ can provide.

    From the Catholic Encyclopedia (

    Passing now to the theory of evolution as a philosophical speculation, the history of the plant and animal kingdoms upon our globe is but a small part of the history of the entire earth. Similarly, the geological development of our earth constitutes but a small part of the history of the solar system and of the universe. The theory of evolution as a philosophical conception considers the entire history of the cosmos as an harmonious development, brought about by natural laws. This conception is in agreement with the Christian view of the universe. God is the Creator of heaven and earth. If God produced the universe by a single creative act of His will, then its natural development by laws implanted in it by the Creator is to the greater glory of His Divine power and wisdom. St. Thomas says: "The potency of a cause is the greater, the more remote the effects to which it extends." (Summa c. Gent., III, c. lxxvi); and Suarez: "God does not interfere directly with the natural order, where secondary causes suffice to produce the intended effect" (De opere sex dierum, II, c. x, n. 13). In the light of this principle of the Christian interpretation of nature, the history of the animal and vegetable kingdoms on our planet is, as it were, a versicle in a volume of a million pages in which the natural development of the cosmos is described, and upon whose title-page is written: "In the beginning God created heaven and earth."
  • Re:Uhhh (Score:5, Informative)

    by neil.orourke ( 703459 ) on Monday April 26, 2004 @11:56PM (#8979955)
    And the source of these comments would be???

    It's not enough to simple make a statement like this - back it up with proof - a URL, a citation, whatever - so I can go to the same source as you and read that comment myself.

    For example, tml states that Carbon 14 dating is useless for objects more than 70,000 years old, because the half-life of C14 is 5730 years. The article goes on in some depth about dating old things, in direct contradiction to your comment.
  • Re:Uhhh (Score:3, Informative)

    by linuxghoul ( 16059 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:02AM (#8979995) Journal
    A polygraph literally creates multiple graphs, of various physiological measurements from the diffrent (six?) probes attached to the subjects body. These graphs taken together can then be visually analysed by an expert to (at least in theory) determine when the subject seemed to be under a higher physiological stress (theory saying that when we lie, we are under a higher stress).

    But yes, the dictionary meaning is correct.
  • by juuri ( 7678 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:05AM (#8980019) Homepage
    You can call it on 2 as well. Ur was and has been a well known city for as long we have had printed words. The exact location may have been in question but there was no lack of evidence to show that it did really exist.
  • by xeniten ( 550128 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:11AM (#8980063) Homepage
    For the skeptics...

    Satellite-Imagery []

    More... []

    Here's some historical background on the Ark and how it relates to Iraq which should concern us today... Iraq and Noah's Ark []

    Get into God's Word people, you won't regret it.

  • by buckhead_buddy ( 186384 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:31AM (#8980204)
    We studied Ur in the 1970's in fifth grade ancient history class along with the Egyptians and others so it wasn't just a few years ago. There was even a board game from Ur. They sumerians didn't leave rules how to play it though, so the maker included the rules to Parchesi which was pretty cheesy.

    You should refer to Jewish texts being a good resource. Christian editors changed the order of the scrolls when compiled into a codex and changed the meaning by translating to Greek, Latin, and then local languages. The changes aren't significant, but for an infallible source, something like the King James version has significant changes. (Look at the Ten Commandments versus the Jewish Decalogue; which one does everyone want to post in courthouses?)

    Getting back to the subject of the ark, I do find it funny how some of these expeditions will find additional "historical facts" about their goal selectively drawn from polytheistic mythology (in this case of Marduk fighting Tiamat) yet they don't acknowledge that these myths offer no theological truth.

    Finding the Ark might create a resurgence in the followers of the goddess of water and chaos rather than simply the Judeo Christian monotheistic diety.

  • Re:Uhhh (Score:5, Informative)

    by GMontag451 ( 230904 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:33AM (#8980221) Homepage
    Its *not* a uniform event. The production rates of carbon-14 vary over time due to flucuations in cosmic ray output of the Sun. That is the reason that we are currently not at equilibrium (production of carbon-14 equals decay). Of course creationists like to use the fact that we aren't at equilibrium to claim that the earth couldn't be more than 30,000 years old by extrapolating back using the *current* production rates, while convieniently ignoring the fact that rates change. Anyway, we have a method for finding out what the production rates were in the past and using that to correct our dating. That method is to date objects that we know the age of, such as fossilized trees where we can date each ring separately, or core samples from certain lakes where there are periodic sedimentation layers.
  • Re:Oh great (Score:2, Informative)

    by GoatEnigma ( 586728 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:35AM (#8980233) Homepage
    Sweet ! One can clearly see that you are not a geologist, or in any way related to a field of Earth Sciences.

    First of all, there are fossils on top of mountains all over the world. I have seen Ordivician fossils in the Rockies, and been to the Burgess Shale, both localites over 1500m above sea level. Gee, funny, at one time these places were UNDERNEATH the sea! Gasp! And in the miles of sandstone on the west coast of south america... hmm, whale fossils! Rock moves - get over it.

    Meanwhile, the Sphinx shows water erosion because IT's ACTUALLY RAINED THERE BEFORE!! Wow!!! Unbelievable! You know, climate doesn't stay the same forever! The Nazca lines are only 300 - 400 years old, and even they have water damage. Average annual rainfall in Nazca: 0! I would suggest looking up some studies on the egyptian climate.

    Additionally, wood can exist for many thousands of years. Peat bogs, isomorphism, replacement and even volcanic flows (especially a tuff or nuees ardente) can all preserve wood for long periods of time. In an anoxic environment wood will be preserved indefinitely.

    Geology, biology, chemistry and anthropology has time and again proved the bible wrong. It will continue to do so, because religion was developed as a defensive mechanism for the things that people could not understand.

    I would highly suggest reading a book called "Cosmos" by Carl Sagan.

  • by Bruce Perens ( 3872 ) <> on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:39AM (#8980270) Homepage Journal
    I think you missed my point. Which is that the bible is Man's Word.

    Let me reproduce for you 2 Kings, 2:23-24.

    23: And he (Elisha) went up from thence unto Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head.

    24: And he turned back, and looked on them, and cursed them in the name of the Lord. And there came forth two she bears out of the wood, and tare forty and two children of them.


  • Tell me.... (Score:2, Informative)

    by NarrMaster ( 760073 ) <dfordyce AT mix DOT wvu DOT edu> on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:47AM (#8980328)
    ...this looks like a boat how?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @12:53AM (#8980363)

    As an atheist, I challenge this notion. I am not religious because I hold no beliefs on the matter. I make no claims about God, one way or the other.

    Small correction: You're an agnostic [] not an atheist [].

  • Re:Here's what to do (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:08AM (#8980478)
    Bidding has ended, but luckily, it has been relisted []. I'm sure it must be a bargain at 10,000,000$US even though there are no pictures.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:43AM (#8980716)
    Onan's sin was disobeying God, not any sort of sexual transgression (homosexuality was not involved , I think you're getting your bible stories mixed up).
    The Old Testament is littered with innocents being punished. Female rape victims could be stoned to death (under certain circumstances) while the rapist could get away with a fine paid to the woman's family.
  • Re:Uhhh (Score:2, Informative)

    by Tamor ( 604545 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:44AM (#8980721)
    Yet again we see people with no understanding of what it means for something to be a scientific theory. The theory of gravity is only a scientific theory.

    I'd recommend "Abusing Science, the Case Against Creationism" to anyone whose scientific education stopped in high school and who doesn't really understand why the creationist point of view is not an alternative explanation.
  • by cardshark2001 ( 444650 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @01:56AM (#8980784)
    I think it unlikely that an Ark will be found on Ararat.

    However, I have pieced together pretty good circumstantial evidence over the years for a flood in ancient times, just as described all over the world by people who had no (or very little) contact with each other.

    About 11,400 years ago, we know from glacial core samples that the earth's mean temperature raised anywhere from 5-7 degrees in just a few decades [](though some paleoclimatologists say as much as 10 degrees in just a few years). Before the glacial evidence, scientists believed that the temperature changed very slightly over a long period of time, a theory known as steady state earth which is increasingly being discarded in the paleoclimatological community.

    Furthermore, as I said earlier, people all over the world have recounted stories of a great flood, the native americans had such a myth, the natives of the mid-atlantic ridge had such a myth, the natives of Australia had a myth, etc.

    This global pervasiveness of the flood myth scientists have long explained as a "racial memory", with little or no evidence to support this assertion, because steady-state earth held that such things a global floods could not happen.

    We now know that Earth goes through cataclysms periodically, such as the one which wiped out the dinosaurs, and that sometimes really scary global things happen. Scientists have yet to outright admit that there was a great flood, but have begund to tacitly admit it.

    For example, we know for certain that before 11,400 years ago, the level of the ocean was 300-500 feet lower than it is today. Accepted wisdom holds that this changed gradually, but this theory may not last now that we know the mean temperature changed so drastically so rapidly.

    Given the proclivity of humans to band around the coast, such a rapid rise would lead to massive casualties the likes of which are unknown to us today. It might indeed seem as though the whole earth flooded. Furthermore, quite interesting archaeological finds are likely to be buried underwater.

    Well, here comes the circumstantial evidence I mentioned in the start of the post. Plato said that Atlantis sank about 9000 years before his time. It just so happens that he lived about 2400 years ago. Add up those two numbers, and you get 11,400.

    It's quite a coincidence, and it's true.

    There is a chain of mountains in the middle of the atlantic ocean called the "Mid-Atlantic-Ridge". If you examine a contour map, you'll see that if the sea were lowered about 300-500 feet, it would be a huge chunk of land, not quite as big as a continent, but not quite as small as what we call an island either.

    To my knowledge, I am the only person to put this data together in this way. Those scientists who consider Atlantis to be a possibility place it in the mediteranean ocean.

    I'm not saying there were telepathic pyramid building Atlanteans, but I think it is very possible Atlantis existed, and traces will be discovered under the ocean.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @02:05AM (#8980836)
    Those who would like to read a first-person account of climbing Mt Ararat by the first two Americans to reach the top, Thomas Gaskell Allen Jr and William Lewis Sachtleben, can find it in their book Across Asia on a Bicycle, now back in print.

    The two were also the first to circle the world on a modern bicycle, and the book describes the grueling Asia portion of their trip. (Someone really should repeat their trip.) There's more about the book at:

    On the mountain, they saw nothing that resembled the ark, but they were also so poorly equipped and inexperienced that it's a wonder they survived.

    Despite the implications of the CNN story, if you're in shape, climbing Mt Ararat is no big deal and it is an exceptional mountain to visit. Unlike most mountains of its size, except for Little Ararat alongside it, it stands alone on a wide plain. Those who'd like to go, might check out the guides at Middle Earth Travel in Turkey:

    Also, has some pictures of the "Ararat Anomaly" that is the focus of this expedition at: noahs_ark_010823-1.html

    --Mike Perry, Seattle

  • Re:Uhhh (Score:2, Informative)

    by neil.orourke ( 703459 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @02:37AM (#8980991)
    What "Theory of Creation"?

    Creationism doesn't make any testable predictions; it is simply a statement of how things came to be.

    A scientific theory, such as the Inflation theory, makes predictions that can be tested. The earlier theory to Inflation, the Big Bang Theory, predicted that there would be leftover radiation at a certain temperature if the Big Bang did indeed happen. Researchers went looking for this radiation and lo! there is was. The Cosmic Background Radiation ( roduction.html)

    Where are the predictions in Creation that can be tested? Oh, that's right - there are none.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @03:03AM (#8981081)
    > If you hypothesize a flatter planet then it seems definitely possible that the whole of it could be covered with water, assuming that your hypothesis holds.

    No need to investigate further, then. The science of geology has already discredited a flatter planet.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @03:45AM (#8981252)
    here's you calculation
    Radius of earth = 6371Km = 6.371e6 metres
    Surface area of earth = 1.7e14 metres^2
    height half way up Ararat = 2590 metres
    Volume of water needed to cover surface of earth to this level = 4.4e17m^3.

    Volume of water held in atmosphere = 1.3e13 metres^3
    Volume of water on land or frozen in ice sheets (almost all of this is in the latter) = 3.3e16 metres^3.

    So even if all of the water on the planet fell as rain, you'd still only have about a tenth as much to get you half way up Ararat.
  • by bigbird ( 40392 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @04:20AM (#8981360) Homepage
    have to say that it more than bugs me when I see the bible refer to pi as 3.0.

    Really? When decimals weren't even invented yet? Pi == 3 is a pretty good approximation actually, it is only 5% off the actual value.

  • by andy55 ( 743992 ) * on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @04:22AM (#8981369) Homepage
    I have to say that it more than bugs me when I see the bible refer to pi as 3.0.

    You shoudln't be so easily slighted. Do you think the enigma and majesty of pi, found in essentially every aspect of the theoretical and physical universe, would be trivially spelled out? Were you expecting an inifinitely long bible with all the digits? What base would it be in? It would almost be a contradiction or let-down to expect a supposedly holy text to express pi in a domain so clearly unfitting (but completely appropriate for pi). This is to say, pi can be easily arguged to be exactly 3 in a domain we have not discovered. Consider some of the other major lurking aspects of the universe yet to be unraveled (all relating to geometry, time-space, the physical universe) -- dark energy, dark matter, the physical orgins of the universe, unification of all forces, fundamental particles, and so on. We are still a far cry from understanding the fabric of the universe (God created or not).

    So, this is to say that before you discount the bible, I'd wait until we have the entire phyiscal and time-space universe figured out for sure. At such a time, we finally may have the authority to make such judegements about findamental contanstants. (Of course, IMHO, I beleive this say won't come for a long long time, if ever).

    Finally, if you think I'm spouting hot air, I encourage to drop by my site and see what I do...
  • The story of Onan (Score:3, Informative)

    by Arker ( 91948 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @04:25AM (#8981380) Homepage

    There's no shortage of really horrific barbaric passages in the Bible, but I don't think the story of Onan fits that lot. It's traditionally been (very badly) misinterpreted by Christians to condemn masturbation or even homosexuality, yes, but if you read the thing that's clearly not what it was about.

    Onans brother married, but died before he could produce offspring. Under Hebrew law, Onan therefore became guardian of this property, including his wife. Under Hebrew law, however, he was supposed to impregnate that wife, and then his offspring through her were to be treated as his brothers offspring - to preserve his brothers name and line, which were very important things. Only in the event that the woman were sterile and no offspring could be reproduced was Onans line to retain his brothers property.

    But Onan deliberately withdrew at the last moment, deliberately trying to avoid getting her pregnant, out of greed so he could keep what was his brothers. He was trying to keep the letter of the law but defeat its purpose, and in the context of the Hebrew law at the time, he was attempting to destroy his own brothers line and name in order to take his land. This was his sin.

  • by CdBee ( 742846 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @04:29AM (#8981397)
    The legend of the Ark is not solely a Christian tradition! Refer to Surah 11 of the Qu'ran

    011.040 (Thus it was) till, when Our commandment came to pass and the oven gushed forth water, We said: Load therein two of every kind, a pair (the male and female), and thy household, save him against whom the word hath gone forth already, and those who believe. And but a few were they who believed with him.

    011.041 And he said: Embark therein! In the name of Allah be its course and its mooring. Lo! my Lord is Forgiving, Merciful.

    011.042 And it sailed with them amid waves like mountains, and Noah cried unto his son - and he was standing aloof - O my son! Come ride with us, and be not with the disbelievers.

    011.043 He said: I shall betake me to some mountain that will save me from the water. (Noah) said: This day there is none that saveth from the commandment of Allah save him on whom He hath had mercy. And the wave came in between them, so he was among the drowned.

    011.044 And it was said: O earth! Swallow thy water and, O sky! be cleared of clouds! And the water was made to subside. And the commandment was fulfilled. And it (the ship) came to rest upon (the mount) Al-Judi and it was said: A far removal for wrongdoing folk!

    Link for further reading: Surah 11 at []
  • by ThosLives ( 686517 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @07:25AM (#8982039) Journal
    I believe the Bible says that "the floodgates of the heavens and the deeps were opened". Does anyone know how much water was contained subterraneously that could have been released (think geysers on a massive scale)?

    You might want to look up the Hydroplate Theory [] as one possible alternative (granted this link is from a creationist website I found on google, but the science is at least plausible, as opposed to the nonsense found here [])

  • wow.... (Score:2, Informative)

    by Garyman99 ( 710843 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @08:33AM (#8982507)
    my blood pressure is going through the roof because of the extreme lack of COMMON SENSE of the people who are supporting this expidition. some argue that there's no way that the waters could rise that much, others say there's no way he could have gotten around the world to get all of the animals. but damnit, how the hell did the animals get back to where they were from? oh yes... MAGIC. god damn son of a als;kdjfjksadfl;j heart attack... bbl
  • CN Tower... (Score:4, Informative)

    by AzrealAO ( 520019 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @08:46AM (#8982623)
    Canada built a space needle, it has as far as I can tell no practicle purpose what-so-ever, but they built it to have a really tall building I think.

    That'd be wrong.

    "Defining the Toronto skyline, the CN Tower is Canada's most recognizable and celebrated icon. At a height of 553.33m (1,815 ft., 5 inches), it is the World's Tallest Building, an important telecommunications hub, and the centre of tourism in Toronto."

    "Although the CN Tower inspires a sense of pride and inspiration for Canadians and a sense of awe for tourists, its origins are firmly rooted in practicality. The construction boom in Toronto in the 1960's transformed the skyline characterized by relatively low buildings into one dotted with skyscrapers. These new buildings caused serious communication problems. With its microwave receptors at 338 m (1,109 ft.) and 553.33m (1,815 ft., 5 inches) antenna, the CN Tower swiftly solved the communication problems with room to spare. As a result people living in the Toronto area now enjoy some of the clearest reception in North America."

    Information from the official CN Tower website [].
  • by rnelsonee ( 98732 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @09:29AM (#8983044)
    The Flood story of Genesis is a perfect example of a doublet - a story that is found twice, but with different details. Logically, although one (at most) may be true, it is most likely that the story is based on an older legend. And history tells us that through oral tradition, these legends can be greatly exagerrated.

    Now onto the fun. If you go ahead and actually read Genesis 7, instead of listening to what your minister/priest told you, you'll find two complete stories completey interwoven with different details. It is believed that there were two main authors of Genesis, one from Judea in the south, and one from Israel in the north. Convienently, they used different names for God (Yahweh and Elohim). The King James Version, thankfully, keeps these names separate by referring them to as "the Lord" and "God". Which makes separating the two flood stories a little easier.

    In one version, "God" asks for two of every animal, and they go on the ark two by two. So far so good, right? But it then says the rains kept up for 150 days. And what kind of bird brings back the olive branch proving the land is appearing again? A raven.

    The next version, with "the Lord", fills in the gaps we're all used to. In this version, seven pairs of animals are to be loaded up (!?). But it then rains for the familiar 40 days and 40 nights. And then Noah sends out a dove, which returns with the branch.

    So the version we learn is a simple hybrid of the two stories that were almost certainly written by different authors at different times.

    Sure, one of the stories could be true, but it is most likely based on an older flood myth. From what I've heard, many religions have a flood story, so some people believe there was a great flood, but we just don't have enough evidence.

  • Re:My own thoughts (Score:3, Informative)

    by tweek ( 18111 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @09:41AM (#8983176) Homepage Journal
    In all fairness, if you read the bible as a whole, the new and old testaments do not contradict each other.

    You have to understand that the New Testament is the fulfilling of the prophecies in the Old Testament. The key is in the name "Testament".

    The whole point of the New Testament was to show that man needed a once and for all sacrifice because he could never live up to the standard that God required to get eternale life. That's the point of the Messiah.

    You really need to view the New Testament through the eyes of the Hebrew Faith for it to make sense.

    Having said that, I don't care either way what someone believes or if it's even true but at least try to view it as a whole work and not piecemeal as so many people like to do to discredit it.

    There ARE contradictions between the two but only when you read one part at a time.

    Then again it could be, in the words of Bill Hicks, that "God was fuckin' with ya!'
  • by KyleJ61782 ( 106226 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @09:42AM (#8983182)
    Before repeating quotes you have heard, what you might want to do is check with someone who actually can read the Greek of that passage you quote from John 19:30. So here's how the NIV translates verse 30:

    "When he had received the drink, Jesus said, 'It is finished.' With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit."

    Here's the actual Greek:

    "Hote oun elaben to oxos ho Iêsous eipen, Tetelestai, kai klinas tên kephalên paredôken to pneuma."

    And here's a word for word translation of the Koine:

    "When therefore he took the sour wine the Jesus said, It has finished, and bowing the head he gave up the spirit."

    A more fluid, still literal, English translation would yield the following:

    "Therefore, when he took the sour wine Jesus said, "It is finished," and bowing his head he gave up his spirit."

    For your information, let me fully parse the word and account for why it is the way it is. The word translated into, "It is finished," tetelestai, is a perfect tense middle/passive voice (though in this case it must be passive since there's no object implied or otherwise), third person singular, indicative mood from the verb teleô. The verb teleô has many meanings, so here's a list from the Liddell & Scott, Greek-English Lexicon: "I. (1) to complete, fulfill, accomplish: generally, to perform, execute, Lat. perficere -- Pass. to be completed, fulfilled, accomplished: to come to pass, happen; (2) to make perfect, bring to maturity; (3) to bring to an end, finish, end: in Pass. to come to one's end; (4) sometimes intr. like teleutoô, to come to an end, be fulfilled, turn out. II. (1) to pay one's dues or taxes, to pay as tax, duty, due: generally to lay out, spend; (2) to be rated or assessed, to belong to, be classed among. III. to consecrate, initiate, Pass. to have oneself initiated." So yes, it *can* mean "the debt is paid," but I would argue against that for several reasons. First of all, in the account, Jesus is dying and his ministry up to his death is finished. Most logically it seems that his work on the earth before death is being referred to here. Secondly, the words "the debt" do not appear in the Greek text, so the Greek would have to be rendered "It is paid," not "the debt is paid," to be completely literal. Furthermore within the immediately surrounding context, no mention is made of debt. Finally, from a strictly Christian theological perspective, the debt had not been paid by that point, since Jesus had not suffered the pain of death, the subsequent descent into hell, and his resulting resurrection.

    One other point to be made would be that it is relatively difficult to translate the Greek perfect into English, since their perfect tense is said with the viewpoint of the speaker now speaking about the ramifications of an action having occurred in the past. So a verb in the perfect tense does *not* refer to the past action, but actually to the present state/consequences. For example, take the verb lambanô, which means "I take." In the aorist, elabon, it means "I took." However, the perfect, eilêpha, can mean "I have taken" or just simply "I have" since if you have taken something, speaking about the current state now, you actually have it in your posession.

    So feel free to take what I've said as you will. I can assure you, though, that the translation "it is finished" is at least as valid as "the debt is paid" if not a more accepted translation of what Jesus says.

    By the way, all this comes by means of analysis from myself, a second year Greek student at the University of Illinois, so you could probably ask most people who know Greek and they could confirm what I have written here.

    God bless,

    Kyle Johnson
  • by defile ( 1059 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @09:47AM (#8983246) Homepage Journal
    In one of the God themed episodes of the Simpsons, the Flanders family sings "God said to Noah there's gonna be a floody floody". So I looked it up, and it turns out that this is a real Christian rock song.

    : |

    Rise and Shine

    God said to Noah there's gonna be a floody floody
    God said to Noah there's gonna be a floody floody
    Get those children out of the muddy muddy
    Children of the Lord

    So rise and shine
    And give God your glory, glory.
    Rise and shine
    And give God your glory, glory
    Rise and shine and HEY!!
    Children of the Lord

    So Noah he built him he built him an arky arky
    Noah he built him he built him an arky
    Made it out of hickory barky barky


    The animals they came on came on by twoosies twoosies
    Animals they came on came on by twoosies twoosies
    Elephants and Kangaroosies-roosies,
    Children of the Lord


    It rained and poured for forty daysies daysies
    Rained and poured for forty daysies daysies
    Drove those animals nearly crazy crazy
    Children of the Lord


    The sun came out and dried up the landy landy
    Sun came out and dried up the landy landy
    Everything was fine and dandy dandy
    Children of the Lord


    Noah he sent out sent out a dovey dovey
    Noah he sent out sent out a dovey dovey
    Everything was peace and lovey lovey
    Children of the Lord


    The animals they came out came out by threesies threesies
    Animals they came out came out by threesies threesies
    Must have been those birds and beesees beesees
    Children of the Lord


    This is the end of end of the story story
    This is the end of end of the story story
    Everything was hunky dory dory
    Children of the Lord

  • by jamshid42 ( 218149 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @10:12AM (#8983542) Homepage
    "In one story God smote with fire, the other with rain, both plentiful elemental forces, leading me to suspect these stories have even older roots than the bible."

    I forget all of the details, but the story of the great flood originates from either the Babylonian or Sumerian mythos, long before Xianity. Most of the Xian stories from the Black Book of Fairy Tales originate from older religions in a similar fashion. But, then again, most older religions "borrowed" their tales from even older mythos as well.

    Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'Lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn.

  • by mightypenguin ( 593397 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @10:15AM (#8983579)
    The reason nobody can find it is because it's probably not there. The modern mountains in Turkey were named from the account in the Bible as people thought that was the place, but in actuality the real location isn't known for sure. It's just the "traditional" site. Just like Mount Sinai is actually just across the Red Sea in Saudi Arabia. But anyway, that's just my opinion, for some interesting research look at:
    http:/ /
  • by wynterx ( 148276 ) <> on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @10:16AM (#8983597) Homepage

    I know you shouldn't feed the trolls, but I'll bite..

    1. Noah didn't get the animals to the ark. God did. It's in the bible, read it.
    2. Their own habitats afterwards? They didn't have one, the flood destroyed the whole world. As to getting where they are now, if you are actually interested, take a look here []
    3. As for piranhas, Noah only brought animals that had "the breath of life in them". Fish [] need not apply.
    4. Worms, insects and other "lower" life forms probably didn't come either. Perhaps related to the same problem as 3, but also the hebrew used for "life" in the flood account (nephesh I think, I'm no Hebrew scholar) implies a "higher" form of life (a "soul"?). But even allowing for their presence (and yes, it was perhaps a little dangerous, them and the termites), Noah could have made a stone or steel bowl for them to live in for a year or so!

    I must say I'm surprised there weren't any dinosaur [] questions.

  • by aster_ken ( 516808 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @10:19AM (#8983625)

    On one of the modern expeditions (1980's) men brought back wood which appeared to match the ark specs which was taken from near the historically reported site.

    The first pieces of hand-tooled wood found on Mt. Ararat were discovered in 1953 by Ferdinand Navarra. He returned to the site in 1954 and 1955 bringing back a sample on the latter expedition. This piece of wood was lignite dated (a method of dating used before current carbon-14 methods) to be approximately 5,000 years old. The only problem with lignite dating is that it's horribly inaccurate. Modern dating results for this sample were obtained by five different labs all with similar conclusions: the wood is from the seventh century CE. There was a great deal of controversy at the time about the assumptions that went into these five tests, but the results still stand. If you wish to read more on Navarra's discrediting then a simple Google search should suffice.

    The second pieces of hand-tooled wood found on Mt. Ararat were discovered in 1984 by George Jammal. Jammal did visit Mt. Ararat in 1980, but his expedition was unsuccessful. This piece of wood has been carbon-14 dated to be only 2,000 years old. Again, there is controversy surrounding the assumptions used in the dating process. Jammal's story isn't quite right, either. Should the reader be so inclined, a Google search will turn up more information on his discrediting.

    This wood is of a species not living today and similar to cypress which lives nowhere near the mountain now.

    The piece of wood is not only of a species of tree that is living today, but it is also not a cypress tree. The 1984 wood sample is from a type of oak tree that is found in abundance today. What makes people think it is "not living today" is that this tree is not currently found on Mt. Ararat. The closest place one could find this tree is approximately 300 km away. However, local records, whether verbally passed or written I'm not sure, indicate that Mt. Ararat was a heavily forested area sometime around 200 to 300 years ago. It is feasible that this species of oak was found on the mountain during that time period.

    I am not aware of any other wood samples being brought back from expedition.

    It is of the proper carbon dated age range and has the proper machining marks to match.

    As stated earlier, the carbon-14 dating used on this second wood sample showed it to be only 2,000 years old. This places the "great flood" and the ark firmly in the age of the Roman Empire. I'm quite certain Caesar would have noted something like this in his records. As for machining marks, I can't argue with you on that. The machining marks have been verified to be from bronze-age hand-tools - the kind a poor community during the early first century CE would use.

    I sincerely doubt that even if the ark is found and is substantially intact that it will change any hearts or minds. The Atheists will remain adamant that it is a fabrication. The Biblical scholars will argue as usual and the Islamic nuts will...

    The reason nothing will change is because nothing is proven. The existence of the ark would no more prove that God exists than it would prove that Moore's Law will be broken. The only thing a discovery like this would prove is that a large ark that possibly housed animals was built. It may or may not have "landed" on Mt. Ararat. There is absolutely no concrete evidence to show that this mountain was once submerged. If it was, one should be able to find large amounts of sea salts, pillow lava, water-formed sediments, and/or fossiliforous rocks. Only pillow lava is reported to be on the mountain. However, geologists have not performed an exhaustive study of these formations, and many experts claim that it is not pillow lava at all.

    Recent expeditions found the anchor stones from it in the proper region for them to have been dropped.

    These expeditions were to the regions surrounding Mt. Ararat. The searchers discovered large stone blo

  • by Infamous Tim ( 513490 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @11:50AM (#8984806)
    When a person settles down to learn Greek, the class doesn't start with MODERN Greek. So when I started learning Greek, they started me at ANCIENT Greek, 600 BC as they put it. This Greek is significantly harder to learn because there's more grammar, more punctuation, and more special cases. When a Greek students wants to read something from a later time period, they have to figure out what changes were made to the language and then account for them. This is more easily done going from old to new.
    Greek through the years has been watered down and vastly simplified. What used to be a beautifully musical language is now more like others, simple, patternistic. My professor was showing us what kinds of things are no longer around. It makes the language appear quite different, but it is still readable because we started at an earlier period.
  • by Zwack ( 27039 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @02:04PM (#8986616) Homepage Journal

    we cannot remove them or modify them (by chiseling off a piece) for carbon-14 dating because of local governmental restrictions

    Good thing too. Carbon-14 dating wouldn't work on these. Carbon-14 dating is only useful for determining the age of organic matter, not inorganic matter.

    Go google for information about C-14 dating if you really care.


  • by bechthros ( 714240 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @04:56PM (#8989335) Homepage Journal
    "If it comes from a source that I think is credible,"

    then you believe it. The word "belief" doesn't automatically invoke religion. I believe that when I go out into the parking lot my car will be sitting there because the battery is dead. I have no *proof* of this, my car could have been towed or stolen or destroyed. But I believe that it will be in the parking lot when I walk out the door. So far I'm batting 1000.

    "A scientist *thinks* that the earth is round, because somebody else explained it and it makes sense."

    OK, now I see the problem. You have a semantic hangup with the word "believe". Fine, use the word "think". It's the same thing. If you *think* something is true, then you believe it to be true. And if you believe something to be true, it's because you think that it's true. Christians *think* the Bible makes sense, this is the same thing as saying they believe it.

    And let's not forget that the actual scientist thinks that the Earth is round because of measurements and observations he's made. You, having heard the scientist and found him credible, choose to *believe* what he is saying, since you didn't make these measurements and observations and have no first-hand scientific knowledge that would lead you to that conclusion independantly.

    Face it man, a vast portion of who you are is what you've been told. When you were five, did you not cross the street without looking both ways because you had personally experimented and obtained unfavorable results - or did you *believe* your mother when she told you it was a bad idea? Did you personally try talking to the nice stranger in the trenchcoat with the candy and find out through personal experimentation that he was a child molestor - or did you *believe* your parents and teachers when they told you he was a sicko? We all hold that murder is wrong (hopefully) not because we've tried it and been dissatisfied with the results, but because other people who have been involved with actual murders tell us it tends to not work out too well, and we choose to *believe* them. We subscribe to the theory of relativity not because we've proved it ourselves - we *believe* Einstein.

    There are two sources of knowledge in the world - what you prove yourself to be true and what you accept from others to be true.

    That's why, when asked a question to which one might not definately know the answer but is pretty sure, a common response is "I believe so", or "I believe not". Those are not inherently religious statements.

    Anybody who tells anybody anything is either believed, disbelieved, or held in reserve judgement. (assuming they speak the same language, have the same mental capacity, blah blah blah).

    Don't like the word? Don't use it. But it has a well-established meaning completely divorced from faith or religion. But hey, look it up yourself, don't *believe* me...
  • by |/|/||| ( 179020 ) on Tuesday April 27, 2004 @06:27PM (#8990425)
    OK OK, of course there are multiple definitions of the word "believe."

    In the case of the scientist believing that the world is round, the scientist is not taking this fact on faith - it's an explanation that makes sense and that meshes well with everything else that the scientist has seen and learned about the world around him. The scientist accepts it as true and works from there, until he learns otherwise. In the case of a religous person believing in the bible, believing that God dumped a miraculous amount of water on the planet requires absolute faith. It requires believing in something that *cannot* be tested, that is outside of the bounds of the observable universe. That's a very different kind of belief, and I would argue that it's not a very useful tool for living in the universe.

    In my previous post I was purposely using a narrow definition of the word in order to make my point, but I suppose that just makes my point confusing.

    You say that all knowledge comes from yourself or from others, which I agree with. You also say that anything you hear from others is either believed or not believed. This statement I either agree with or disagree with, depending on which definition of "believe" you are using.

    It's the difference between "I believe that's a storm blowing in." and "I believe in ghosts." You hear people make the claim that everything requires belief, but they don't qualify what kind of belief they're talking about. I assume they mean the second (I believe in ghosts) kind of belief, in which case they're wrong. I can apply the scientific method and easily come up with evidence that such and such a scientific article is "believable." I highly doubt that any amount of effort could produce scientific evidence of ghosts. If it did, then ghosts would be outside of the realm of the second-kind-of-belief (see above), and faith would no longer be required to "believe" in them. In other words, nothing that is actually real (interacts with the universe) requires second-kind-of-belief for justification.

    Now you see why I like to use only one of the definitions of "believe!" Maybe we need another word... in fact, we probably already have one. Maybe there's a better way to put it?

  • by BCGlorfindel ( 256775 ) <<klassenk> <at> <>> on Wednesday April 28, 2004 @10:38AM (#8996106) Journal
    If you go ahead and actually read Genesis 7, instead of listening to what your minister/priest told you

    Alright, let's do that, here are Genesis 7 verses 2-3:

    2: Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female.
    3: Of fowls also of the air by sevens, the male and the female; to keep seed alive upon the face of all the earth.

    In one version, "God" asks for two of every animal, and they go on the ark two by two ... In this version, seven pairs of animals are to be loaded up

    Following your advice and actually reading Genesis 7 there is no disparity in the accounts. 7 of every clean animal and the birds, two of every unclean animal.

    the rains kept up for 150 days

    Here is what Genesis really says if you read it:
    Genesis 7:12 And the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights.
    Genesis 7:24And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days.
    Genesis 8:3 And the waters returned from off the earth continually: and after the end of the hundred and fifty days the waters were abated.

    It seems pretty clear, the rain continued for 40 days and 40 nights. The flood waters took 150 days to dry up. No disparity here either.

    And what kind of bird brings back the olive branch proving the land is appearing again? A raven

    And here is the point where I call foul and ask who mislead your post. I can't honestly believe someone who read Genesis 8 could mis-read it and understand a Raven brought back the olive branch.

    Genesis 8: 7-8 And he sent forth a raven, which went forth to and fro, until the waters were dried up from off the earth. Also he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters were abated from off the face of the ground;
    Gensis 8: 11 And the dove came in to him in the evening; and, lo, in her mouth was an olive leaf pluckt off: so Noah knew that the waters were abated from off the earth.

    I strongly suspect your above post was inspired by an article you saw somewhere which attempted to discredit the flood account with the 'inconsistencies' you mention. The problem is reading Genesis 7-8 as a whole will not give these misconceptions. Only a deliberate mis quotation of snipetts. I'd go further than your suggestion of not believing what your pastor says the Bible says, and advise not to believe what anyone else says it says. Including my quotations above. Go read it yourself and see who is telling the truth about what it really says.
  • by Thuktun ( 221615 ) on Wednesday April 28, 2004 @12:39PM (#8997458) Homepage Journal
    The discovery of these headstones comes with a burden - we cannot remove them or modify them (by chiseling off a piece) for carbon-14 dating because of local governmental restrictions on how headstones are to be treated.

    Ignoring the fact that carbon-14 dating wouldn't work, how would measuring the age of a rock determine when it was carved into a particular shape?
  • Re:History (Score:3, Informative)

    by Shipud ( 685171 ) on Wednesday April 28, 2004 @01:47PM (#8998335)
    You have got to be kidding me! Triumpahlist means that you believe your religion to be superior to all others.

    False. Judaic credo in that respect is that there is a single God, and that that he provided a set of edicts, which should be followed. Abiding by these edicts is Jewish belief. It is a burden, not a right. It does not entail superiority.

    The Jews not only believed this, but believed that they as a race were superior as well (and in many ways are)

    Again wrong. Anyone can convert to Judaism, so the racial issue you are putting here is bogus. Judaism is a nation and a religion, which can be joined. The best example is the sory of the mass conversion of the "Erev-rav" -- non Hebrews the joined the Hebrews in the Exodus.

    Read the Old Testament closely and you will realize that the Jews were punished for NOT proselytizing, and the history you speak of is rife with examples of the failings of the Jews and their leaders.

    Nope. According to the canonical prophets, the Kingdom of Israel (the 10 tribes) were exiled by Assyria and vanished for heresies. The population of the Kingdom of Judea was placed in the Babylonian exile because of their sins against God and fellow man. I urge you to quote a single verse which supports that Judea or Israel were punished for not prosletyzing.

  • Re:Conspiracy (Score:2, Informative)

    by ( 545967 ) on Wednesday April 28, 2004 @05:40PM (#9001353)
    Huh??. which is it 2 of everything or 7 of some and 2 of the rest.

    Genesis 7:2 reads "Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female."

    Genesis 7:8-9 reads, "Of clean beasts, and of beasts that are not clean, and of fowls, and of every thing that creepeth upon the earth,There went in two and two unto Noah into the ark, the male and the female, as God had commanded Noah."

    It was two of every unclean and seven of every clean. Gen. 7:2 says that clearly. In Gen. 7:8-9, it is stating the way the beasts boarded the ark - in pairs - two at a time. It isn't talking about the number of each type of animal.

    If the bible is inerrant than Gen 7:8-9 must be a misprint in my copies.

    So your Bible doesn't have a misprint. :) Ask God to open your heart to understanding the Bible. He will if you mean it.

    If the former, then the "clean" species were extincted when Noah offered on his newly built altar: (Gen 8:20). So I guess the two of everything _must_ be true since _clean_ beasts appear after the flood.

    Gen. 8:20 reads, "And Noah builded an altar unto the LORD; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar."

    So Noah used CLEAN animals (there were seven of those taken aboard) and made an offering. So no species were forced into extinction because Noah made a sacrifice on the altar. There were some people who got in trouble in the Bible for using unclean animals for sacrifices.

    Oops, Excuse me for using logic to question this. I'm averse to using fantasy and superstition when I try to think logically.

    No problem. I don't believe in superstition anyway.

    All through your life, I Me Mine, I Me Mine, I Me Mine. -- John Lennon

    Beatles fan? Me too! My favorite band! You quoted a George Harrison song, though, not a Lennon one. Might want to update your sig.

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