Reality comes to roost

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Nyarlathotep's picture
AJ777 - You are well out of

AJ777 - You are well out of mainstream consensus and opinion regarding the existence of Biblical figures and events having occurred.

The Exodus - The Exodus is the founding myth of the Israelites....Scholars are broadly agreed that the exodus story was composed in the 5th century BCE. The traditions behind it can be traced in the writings of the 8th-century BCE prophets,] but it has no historical basis. Instead, archaeology suggests a native Canaanite origin for ancient Israel.

algebe's picture
@AJ777: Believing one can

@AJ777: Believing one can use a method of observation of the natural world to observe the supernatural world is foolish.

That's convenient for Jesus' snake-oil salesmen. Yet the Christian church has never hesitated to display what it considers to be physical evidence of the supernatural in the natural world, such as relics of the cross, weeping Madonna statues, liquefying saints' blood, and other bric-a-brac, and of course the Shroud of Turin. They're still offering fake evidence today in the form of "miracles" at places like Lourdes.

If we are to believe the Exodus chapter of your magical mystery book, we must also believe that the Jews of that era had no pottery, no bone/metal/stone/wooden implements, no leather, in fact no livestock. We must also believe that members of this multitude never died and were buried, but were instead whisked up into heaven without a trace, perhaps on Ezekiel's flying saucer.

Real people moving around in large numbers leave real traces on and under the landscape.

toto974's picture


"Cali the absence of garbage in a desert 2500 years later does not scientifically prove or disprove anything. "


So, in absence of any evidence you decide to assert that the Exodus is real? That's not how logic works.

Sheldon's picture
"Cali the absence of garbage

"Cali the absence of garbage in a desert 2500 years later does not scientifically prove or disprove anything. "

Hahahahhahah, unless it had turned up evidence to support your superstitious myth of course then you'd be lauding the scientific evidence for your beliefs. How many times have we seen theists use this unabashed selection bias.

" If you’re familiar with the narrative the people were provided sustenance by God. I doubt he wrapped the manna in plastic."

Wow, can you really believe this fatuous sentence is how archaeology goes about studying ancient societies? Here's a clue for how idiotic your claim is, the archaeologists were trying to evidence the biblical myths, and after decades of research have had to admit they can find *no evidence* that supports the biblical myths in exodus.

"Insinuating that the absence of a particular truth about the physical world in the Bible proves the Bible is inaccurate is a fallacy."

No it isn't, but by all means do offer some tangible cogent reasoning for your claim it is an unsound argument that decades of archaeology by theists having failed to produce a shred of the expected evidence supporting any aspect of the exodus myth is compelling evidence it never happened? How exactly is it an unsound argument that no evidence where there would have to be some means it didn't happen.

"Why is there no evidence of the Exodus?
According to biblical scripture the Hebrews led by the patriarch Moses took his formerly enslaved people out of Egypt during the reign of Rameses II.
The history of Rameses is exceptionally well documented but there is scant evidence of any such event.
Further the scriptures tell us that Moses took his followers, numbering in the tens of thousands on a 40 year trek around what we today call the middle east.
No archeological evidence of any such diaspora has ever been found in any of the likely locations that this long event would have been situated and no historical documentation exists from any of the many different peoples that such an event would have affected.
Why is this?
Caanan, the alleged eventual destination of the Hebrews was under Egyptian control during this period so their arrival there would certainly have raised eyebrows among the Egyptian officials governing the province."

"According to "Prof. Israel Finkelstein, a senior researcher at the Department of Archaeology at Tel Aviv University and one of the most prominent scholars in the field of biblical archeology today. "The question of historical accuracy in the story of Exodus has occupied scholars since the beginning of modern research," says Prof. Finkelstein. "Most have searched for the historical and archaeological evidence in the Late Bronze Age, the 13th century BCE, partly because the story mentions the city of Ramses, and because at the end of that century an Egyptian document referred to a group called ’Israel‘ in Canaan. However, there is no archaeological evidence of the story itself, in either Egypt or Sinai, and what has been perceived as historical evidence from Egyptian sources can be interpreted differently. Moreover, the Biblical story does not demonstrate awareness of the political situation in Canaan during the Late Bronze Age – a powerful Egyptian administration that could have handled an invasion of groups from the desert. Additionally, many of the details in the Biblical story fit better with a later period in the history of Egypt, around the 7-6th centuries BCE – roughly the time when the Biblical story as we know it today was put into writing."

"“It seems that the story of the exodus was one of the founding texts of the Northern Kingdom (Israel) and that it came to Judah after the destruction of Israel. It is possible that in the later days of Judah, a time of approaching confrontation with Egypt, the story expressed hope, showing a clash with mighty Egypt of the distant past, in which the Children of Israel prevailed. Later the story held a message of hope for those exiled in Babylon, that it was possible to overcome exile, cross a desert and return to the land of the forefathers. Above all, the story of Exodus has been an eternal metaphor for escaping slavery for freedom, in Jewish and other traditions."""

1.a traditional story, especially one concerning the early history of a people or explaining a natural or social phenomenon, and typically involving supernatural beings or events.

arakish's picture
AJ777: "Cali the absence of

AJ777: "Cali the absence of garbage in a desert 2500 years later does not scientifically prove or disprove anything. If you’re familiar with the narrative the people were provided sustenance by God. I doubt he wrapped the manna in plastic."

And what of the bones of all those animals they took with them? They would have had to eaten something before your sky faerie started feeding them mana.


Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ AJ777

@ AJ777

If you’re familiar with the narrative the people were provided sustenance by God.

600,000 people still had to shit, 600.000 people still generate a LOT of garbage. In this case absence of evidence is a clear indication of 'evidence of absence'.

Properly understood the Bible contains no real contradictions.

Now you've done it again, I cracked up for so long Captain Cat decided to save me by the means of a swift bite to the leg.
I love the "properly understood" *pause to dry kilt*. Meaning if I close my eyes to the obvious contradictions throughout the books, and cast the magic spell :Saying "Out of context" 3 times while rotating clockwise followed by the pleas to intercede to those great gods 's advice*Metaphor" and 'Allegory'..we will understand it and miraculously see no contradictions? *Pause while dons dry kilt, changes mind and puts on Depends following the Arakish's advice*. Oh of course that is why there are 30,000 different interpretations of the damn thing. It is all clear now. Numpty.

If so called hard evidence for Jesus was brought to your attention I doubt you would consider it.

Speaking for myself I would certainly consider it and accept that the physical Jesus figure existed if such evidence was discovered.

BUT, then we have to establish the claims about the son of god business and all the other claims in the gospels. Which gospel was correct? Who corrected or made a mistake while copying? Hmmmm.....still I would accept the existence of a physical Jesus if the evidence was forthcoming, the divine Jesus? Of course I would accept it if there was hard evidence for the existence for such a creature.
It would be fun watch Jesus judging the sanctimonious prats in the various sects who claim the "only truth" , beating up the Bakkers and that poisonous collection of charlatans and denying salvation to smug pricks. I wonder how he would judge the smug and judgemental, eh, AJ777?

Oh, thanks for the laugh. You should do this as a stand up routine.

(Edit spelling and for clarity)

arakish's picture
@ AJ777

@ AJ777

Old Man wrote: "600,000 people still had to shit, 600.000 people still generate a LOT of garbage. In this case absence of evidence is a clear indication of 'evidence of absence'."

Exodus {12:37} And the children of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand on foot that were men, beside children.

And that was just the number of men. How many women and children?


EDIT: added verse

Grinseed's picture
Two and a half million Jewish

Two and a half million Jewish refugees followed Moses out of Egypt plus all their livestock.

Because the children of Israel worshipped a golden farm animal at Mt Sinai (where ever that is) your god condemns every last refugee by forbidding them ever entering the Promise Land, Moses included, and so they wander for forty years around the Sinai Peninsula.

Forty years of trekking, setting up camp, hundreds of thousands of tents and canopies and fires and kitchens and temporary corrals and designations of toilet areas with dump holes dug. A few days later, up stakes and the whole circus is on the move again, day after day, month after month round and round the Sinai for forty year. And no mention in the bible if anyone thought to take their rubbish with them and it isn't likely.

("Say...I think we must be going round in circles, I recognise that rock from last month where we buried Grandpa Jethro...we sure Mo knows where he going? Stop the Exodus I wanna get off!")

Forty years, two million deaths, two million burials and nothing like a reasonable sized jewish cemetery is found, not even a meagre groups of graves. You ever seen Jewish tombstones? Most elaborate. Forty years ago I recall Jewish graves with photos of the deceased engraved on the polished headstones. The pay great respects to the deceased. Two million complete sets of skeletons from 2,500 ago. We uncover whole family groups from 3 million years ago and their personal items, but the University of Tel Aviv combs the desert and says "we ain't found shit."

There was no Exodus. It was a tale, all part of a concocted mythological heritage for a newly established kingdom made up of a collection of disparate vaguely related tribes.

David Killens's picture
It appears all this refuse is

It appears all this refuse is just as elusive as this god.

Empedocles's picture
Fuck the LBGTQ! I'm sick to

Fuck the LBGTQ! I'm sick to death of them.

arakish's picture
@ Empedocles

@ Empedocles

Fuck the LBGTQ! I'm sick to death of them.

You could always move to Luna. I don't think there are any there...


toto974's picture
"Fuck the LBGTQ! I'm sick to

"Fuck the LBGTQ! I'm sick to death of them." What?

I thought that you certainly were a supernaturalist but not a bigot.

Sheldon's picture
Really, it was the impression

Really, it was the impression I had from his posts from the start.

toto974's picture
Maybe I missed some of his

Maybe I missed some of his posts? I was focusing of his repeated use of etymolgy to adress his points.

Sheldon's picture
Lots of luck then, he seems

Lots of luck then, he seems pretty intolerant of other people offering contrary opinions and arguments, which is odd for a debate forum.

toto974's picture
Ho!... it seems to be the

Ho!... it seems to be the case of most of the theists that come here anyway so while it is bad, I maybe a little bit desensitized.

Sheldon's picture
Empedocles "Fuck the LBGTQ! I

Empedocles "Fuck the LBGTQ! I'm sick to death of them."

Tin-Man's picture
@Empedocles Re: "Fuck the

@Empedocles Re: "Fuck the LBGTQ! I'm sick to death of them."

Well.... THAT was certainly random. Bigot much, big boy? Sounds like somebody needs an enema..... or maybe a lobotomy... or both.... *shrugging shoulders*...

Tell ya what, though, since you and your kind obviously have some form of asinine phobia in regards to people of different lifestyles, might I suggests you all relocate to a more secluded location? I hear the bottom of the Mariana Trench is a fairly isolated neighborhood.

CyberLN's picture
Empedocles has been escorted

Empedocles has been escorted from the building.

Calilasseia's picture
Cali the absence of garbage

Cali the absence of garbage in a desert 2500 years later does not scientifically prove or disprove anything.

Except that, oops, whenever archaeologists alights upon any discovery that can be apologetically reworked to prop up supernauralist assertions, supernaturalists are all over these results like flies around a fresh dog turd, gleefully and smugly crowing their usual self-satisfied remarks to this effect. But the moment the same archaeologists come up with results refuting supernaturalist assertions, out come the apologeteic excuses as to why the results are purportedly "irrelevant".

The steaming hypocrisy extant in this approach is duly noted.

Plus, when trained archaeologists from an Israeli university state that they've performed relevant diligent searches for corroborating evidence for a narrative, and that evidence is completly absent, I suspect most people with functioning neurons will not be surprised to discover, than given a choice between said trained archaeologists, and a seflf-aggrandising pedlar of glutinous apologetic fabrications, my choice is most assuredly directed in favour of the former.

That's before we factor in to the equation, the matter I mentioned in my previous post, that the existence of corroborating physical evidence of human activity has been found by trained archaeologists to be so unremittingly reliable, that they regard it operationally as akin to a universal law on the matter. Once again, I'm going to run with the trained archaeologists, given that they've spent decades learning not only what data provides said corroboration, but learning how to apply proper, rigorous and robust methodologies to that data, methodologies that again have been demonstrated time and again to be reliable. Your apologetics, and that of other whingeing supernaturalists in this regard, is an intellectual eunuch in comparison.

Moving on ...

If you’re familiar with the narrative the people were provided sustenance by God. I doubt he wrapped the manna in plastic.

Oh, didn't these people have pottery? Didn't they have a whole host of other artefacts that would, upon being lost or discarded, provide the physical corroboration that would seal the deal here? Or did your magic man provide the mother of all refuse collection services as well?

Oh, and once again, just because something is asserted to have happened by your mythology, doesn't mean it did. The whole crock that is the "global flood" fantasy being a case in point, and if you want to try and pretend that the "global flood"isn't a fantasy, I'll happily deliver the requisite discoursive ordnance.

Insinuating that the absence of a particular truth about the physical world in the Bible proves the Bible is inaccurate is a fallacy.


Oh wait, let's see what happens when a narrative such as Homer's The Odyssey is substituted for your mythology, shall we?

Only this body of text contains some interesting assertions of its own. Such as the assertion that Odysseus encountered a six-headed monster called Scylla. Or that various Olympian gods engaged in a range of interventions during Odysseus' voyage. Needless to say, I suspect you would dismiss these assertions at a stroke as being fanciful fabrications on the part of the author, and would probably resort to the same demand for corroboration I expounded upon above before treating these assertions as something other than discardable myth.

But, when it comes to your favourite choice of mythology, we see an entirely different approach, one consisting of erecting yet more blind assertions and fabrications, in a desperate attempt to prop up the assertions of your mythology. The steaming discoursive hypocrisy on display here is duly noted.

Here's a clue for you: any critique applicable to other mythologies, is equally applicable to yours. Your pretence that your mythology enjoys a special, privileged status in this regard is precisely that - a pretence.

Properly understood the Bible contains no real contradictions.

Poppycock. Your mythology is littered with manifestly contradictory assertions. Not to mention instances of rampant absurdity. Tell me, do you think talking snakes are real? Many here will point and laugh if you do.

You are well out of mainstream consensus and opinion regarding the existence of Biblical figures and events having occurred.

Actually, the "mainstream consensus" you're appealing to here, treats much of your mythology as mythology. For example, William G. Dever, was the author of a paper published in The Biblical Archaeologist (later renamed Near Eastern Archaeology, which can be found here. Full citation is:

What Remains Of The House That Albright Built? by William G. Dever, The Biblical Archaeologist, 56(1): 25-35 (March 1993).

For those unfamiliar with the details, William Foxwell Albright was an archaeologist and biblical scholar, who pioneered the use of archaeological methods to uncover whatever historicity is present in the Bible. The abstract thereof opens with:

What of Albright's methodology, his results as an archaeologist, and his major biblical-historical conclusions remains valid today? Is Albright's chronological framework secure? Are the critical results of his fieldwork at Tell Beit Mirsim trustworthy? Albright's insistence on archaeologically reconstructing the context of Biblical literature may be his most durable, and vital, contribution.

On page 33 of this paper, is a revealing comment:

If we turn to Albright's second agenda item, "Moses and Monotheism," even less can be said. Albright asserted, for instance, that:

"The practical monotheism of Moses and other early Israelite religious leaders is again being accepted" (1964:294).

"Only one God ... This is the view of the entire Old Testament" (1964:99).

"The religion of Israel did not change in essentials from Moses to Hillel" (1964:57).

Yet the overwhelming scholarly consensus today is that Moses is a mythical figure; that Yahwism was highly syncretistic from the very beginning; and that true monotheism developed only late in Israel's history, probably not until the Exile and Return (see the state-of-the-art studies gathered in Miller, Hanson, and McBride 1987).

This is followed by, for example:

Albright's next crusade was to provide archaeological validation for the conquest of Canaan by the Israelites under Joshua. Until about 1980, this model could still compete with others, such as the "peaceful infiltration" or "peasants' revolt" models. But a decade of intensive, multi-disciplinary field excavation and survey, mostly carried out by Israeli archaeologists, has swept away "conquest models" completely. One has only to look at Israel Finkelstein's The Archaeology of the Israelite Settlement (1988), the best synthesis, as well as at a voluminous secondary literature, to realize that today no reputable Biblical scholar or archaeologist anywhere would espouse Albright's views. Whatever the details, it is clear that the vast majority of the "early Israelites" were indigenous Canaanites. Mendenhall was right 30 years ago: there was no "conquest."

Even more revealing is this on page 34:

Finally, we must ask what is of lasting value in Albright's Biblical and historical syntheses. The answer is, very little. His central theses have all been overturned, partly by further advances in Biblical criticism, but mostly by the continuing archaeological research of younger Americans and Israelis to whom he himself gave encouragement and momentum. The negative side of all this is that the "revolution" that Albright confidently predicted has indeed come about at last, but hardly in the way that he anticipated-quite the opposite. The irony is that, in the long run, it will have been the newer, "secular" archaeology that contributed the most to Biblical studies, not "Biblical archaeology."

Oh look, that's an interesting revelation - namely, that modern scholars in the field regard archaeological corroboration of textual assertions to be a vital tool when seeking to acquire substantive knowledge on the subject.

Seems like the one that is out of "mainstream consensus" here is you.

Believing one can use a method of observation of the natural world to observe the supernatural world is foolish.

Well since that method has been demonstrated to be reliable within its remit, it's hardly surprising that those of us recognising that reliability, want to know if your assertions of its inapplicability are something other than ex recto fabrications on your part, given that you have a well-documented track record in this vein. Furthermore, when I challenged you to provide a method of obtaining data on supernatural entities, once more, I shall remind you, that I left the choice of said method up to you, though with an onus upon you to demonstrate via appropriate means, that any alternative choice of yours was reliable. Your failure to do this, and your continued carping and snide condescension aimed at the manifestly successful methods of science, is highly illuminating here.

If so called hard evidence for Jesus was brought to your attention I doubt you would consider it.

Oh, look, it's that favourite pastime of supernaturalists known as projection. I'm on public record elsewhere as not only welcoming any genuine data pointing to the existence of a god-type entity, should said data actually materialise, but as recognising that success in this endeavour would be worthy of a Nobel Prize, so monumental would be the effort required to achieve said success. On the other hand, quite a few supernaturalists have openly admitted that they would reject summarily any evidence refuting the assertions of their mythology in this vein, with William Lane Craig being merely the most embarrassingly high-profile example thereof. He openly admitted that if he was given a choice between accepting any hard evidence that the Resurrection was myth, and continuing to cling to that myth, he would take the latter course. So I need no lessons from you on the matter of appropriate discoursive standards, particularly in the light of your manifest failure to adhere to proper standards in your output.

So ... that purportedly reliable alternative method for obtaining data on supernatural entities ... is this another piece of vapourware you're peddling, or do you actually have some substance to offer with respect to this?

arakish's picture
Calilasseia is bombarding

Calilasseia is bombarding with some of the papers I have gathered in my many of research. I had forgotten about Allbright and Dever.



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