King Solomon's (copper) mines? Deep dig finds confluence of science and the Bible

Oct 27, 2008
Digital reconstruction of the Khirbat en-Nahas site in the "StarCAVE," a 3-D virtual environment at UC San Diego’s California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology. As the associate director of the new Center of Interdisciplinary Science for Art, Architecture and Archaeology (CISA3), Thomas Levy is directing a number of digital archaeology projects, including the PNAS study reported here. Credit: UCSD Calit2.

(PhysOrg.com) -- Did the Bible's King David and his son Solomon control the copper industry in present-day southern Jordan? Though that remains an open question, the possibility is raised once again by research reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Led by Thomas Levy of UC San Diego and Mohammad Najjar of Jordan's Friends of Archaeology, an international team of archaeologists has excavated an ancient copper-production center at Khirbat en-Nahas down to virgin soil, through more than 20 feet of industrial smelting debris, or slag. The 2006 dig has brought up new artifacts and with them a new suite of radiocarbon dates placing the bulk of industrial-scale production at Khirbat en-Nahas in the 10th century BCE – in line with biblical narrative on the legendary rule of David and Solomon. The new data pushes back the archaeological chronology some three centuries earlier than the current scholarly consensus.

The research also documents a spike in metallurgic activity at the site during the 9th century BCE, which may also support the history of the Edomites as related by the Bible.

Khirbat en-Nahas, which means "ruins of copper" in Arabic, is in the lowlands of a desolate, arid region south of the Dead Sea in what was once Edom and is today Jordan's Faynan district. The Hebrew Bible (or Old Testament) identifies the area with the Kingdom of Edom, foe of ancient Israel.

For years, scholars have argued whether the Edomites were sufficiently organized by the 10th to 9th centuries BCE to seriously threaten the neighboring Israelites as a true "kingdom." Between the World Wars, during the "Golden Age" of biblical archaeology, scholars explored, as Levy describes it, with a trowel in one hand and Bible in the other, seeking to fit their Holy Land findings into the sacred story. Based on his 1930s surveys, American archaeologist Nelson Glueck even asserted that he had found King Solomon's mines in Faynan/Edom. By the 1980s, however, Glueck's claim had been largely dismissed. A consensus had emerged that the Bible was heavily edited in the 5th century BCE, long after the supposed events, while British excavations of the Edomite highlands in the 1970s-80s suggested the Iron Age had not even come to Edom until the 7th century BCE.

"Now," said Levy, director of the Levantine Archaeology Lab at UCSD and associate director of the new Center of Interdisciplinary Science for Art, Architecture and Archaeology (CISA3), "with data from the first large-scale stratified and systematic excavation of a site in the southern Levant to focus specifically on the role of metallurgy in Edom, we have evidence that complex societies were indeed active in 10th and 9th centuries BCE and that brings us back to the debate about the historicity of the Hebrew Bible narratives related to this period."

Khirbat en-Nahas, comprising some 100 ancient buildings including a fortress, is situated in the midst of a large area covered by black slag – more than 24 acres that you can clearly see on Google Earth's satellite imagery. Mining trails and mines abound. The size argues for industrial-scale production at Khirbat en-Nahas, Levy explained. And the depth of the waste at the site, more than 20 feet, he said, provides a "measuring stick" to monitor social and technological change during the Iron Age, which spans around 1200 to 500 BCE, a key period in the histories of ancient Israel and Edom.

The archaeological team, Levy said, used high-precision radiocarbon dating on date seeds, sticks of tamarisk and other woods used for charcoal in smelting (along with Bayesian analysis) to obtain the 10th- and 9th-century BCE dates. The analyses were carried out by Thomas Higham of the University of Oxford.

Additional evidence comes from ancient Egyptian artifacts found at the site. The artifacts, a scarab and an amulet, were in a layer of the excavation associated with a serious disruption in production at the end of the 10th century BCE – possibly tying Khirbat en-Nahas to the well-documented military campaign of Pharaoh Sheshonq I (aka "Shishak" in the Bible) who, following Solomon's death, sought to crush economic activity in the area.

For a comprehensive picture, the researchers marshaled the "the newest and most accurate digital archaeology tools," Levy said: electronic surveying linked to GIS that all but eliminates human error, as well as digital reconstruction of the site in the "StarCAVE," a 3-D virtual environment at UC San Diego's California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology.

The present findings, Levy noted, support early results he and his colleagues obtained from digs at Khirbat en-Nahas in 2002 and 2004.

"We can't believe everything ancient writings tell us," Levy said. "But this research represents a confluence between the archaeological and scientific data and the Bible.

"Our work also demonstrates methods that are objective and enable researchers to evaluate the data in a dispassionate way. This is especially important for 'historical archaeologies' around the world where sacred texts – whether the Mahabharata in India or the Sagas of Iceland – and the archaeological record are arenas for fierce ideological and cultural debates."

Future research at Khirbat en-Nahas, Levy said, will focus on who actually controlled the copper industry there – Kings David and Solomon or perhaps regional Edomite leaders (who had not been written about in the biblical texts) – and also on the environmental impacts of all this ancient smelting.

Meanwhile, Levy is working with the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature in Jordan and other organizations to have Khirbat en-Nahas and the more than 450-square mile ancient mining and metallurgy district declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, to protect it from possible mining in the future and preserve "its spectacular desert landscape and rare, ancient character."

Source: University of California - San Diego

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Bob_B
3.8 / 5 (11) Oct 27, 2008

oh, so there really is an angel of death that kills babies unless a slaughtered animals' blood is smeared around the door frame. I don't think I could have breathed another second if that weren't true. Aren't we lucky the angel of death is busy killing babies someplace else! Of course, the god of mercy is here, but the god of wrath is over there?
axemaster
3.7 / 5 (13) Oct 27, 2008
"The Bible is neither fake nor doctored."

I don't know who would say that. Doesn't stop it from being unfit for modern society though.
mjporter
4.3 / 5 (14) Oct 27, 2008
/Parts/ of the bible /apparently/ lining up with scientific and archeological data does not mean that the /entire/ bible is neither fake nor doctored. The best lies are 95% truth, after all...
M_N
3.3 / 5 (14) Oct 27, 2008
I agree, Quantum. Even if people don't believe in the "supernatural" aspects of the Bible, the fact remains that it contains many accurate historical accounts. This shouldn't be surprising even to atheists, given the meticulous care that was taken over thousands of years to maintain these documents. The remarkable agreement of texts such as the Dead Sea Scrolls with other ancient documents is an example of this.
Arikin
4.7 / 5 (6) Oct 27, 2008
What one person decides to write down is usually up to that person. Whether it is the truth or not is up to that person's version of it. I think religious people would say "pray about it".

In archaeological terms this is a nice find. Natural resources tell us a lot about a society and its trade. Just look into what the ancient Romans did with Egypt and its mines.
goldengod
2.7 / 5 (7) Oct 27, 2008
Yes and the 10 commandments were actually written on stone tablets and given to Moses while he was talking to God on the top of a mountain.
x646d63
3.9 / 5 (17) Oct 28, 2008
When someone believes whole-heartedly in something, any evidence--in support or contrary--will only enforce that belief.

Faith cannot be reasoned with.
MrFred
3.3 / 5 (9) Oct 28, 2008
When someone believes whole-heartedly in something, any evidence--in support or contrary--will only enforce that belief.

Faith cannot be reasoned with.


That also includes everybody who 'whole-heartedly' believes the bible isn't true.

What does that make us? A bunch of unreasonable people being very unreasonable with each other!
GIR
4.3 / 5 (8) Oct 28, 2008
It makes sense that parts of the Bible are historically accurate. Ancient cultures record history with the insertion of supernatural forces into the stories. This can be found across the world. The Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, ect. all blended history with mythology.

There is archaeological evidence for the Trojan war. This, however, does not mean that I believe that and angry Poseidon conjured up storms or that Achilles' entire body save his heel was rendered invurnerable due to exposure to some godly flame.

Believe what you want but consider that historical evidence of an event described in an ancient history/story book makes sense. If you believe that this also proves the supernatural aspects recorded you may want to become a historian. That logic proves the existance of innumerable gods and you had better get busy if you want to please them all.
MarsM
4 / 5 (6) Oct 28, 2008
Suggest historians learn a lesson from this.

The Bible is neither fake nor doctored.

It might be difficult for you to believe that, but it happens to be true.


People always say that it's about real events but there is hardly any evidence for that. There are some things that can be related to real events from other sources (other texts, archeological diggs, etc.) and that's what people repeat. They never talk about the majority of stories where there is NO relation with other sources. The bible is mainly about spiritual beliefs and should be treated as such.
D666
3 / 5 (8) Oct 28, 2008
The Bible is neither fake nor doctored.


People always say that it's about real events but there is hardly any evidence for that.


On Itunes U, there is a 10-part series from Stanford University (audio-only) entitled "The Historical Jesus", which despite the title spends a lot of time dissecting the old testament as well. It's very interesting, and very illuminating. After listening to this series, you realize how much of a state of aggressive ignorance that christians must maintain about things biblical in order to believe in it.
EHDowdye
2.3 / 5 (9) Oct 28, 2008
This find is just another confirmation on the authentic TRUTH of the BIBLE. See a testimony of a scientist who is a Ph.D. Physicist:

Web-site: http://www.Scienc...ible.net
nano999
2.7 / 5 (7) Oct 28, 2008
Malachi 2:3 Behold, I will corrupt your seed, and spread dung upon your faces

Careful, God has a scat fetish.
GIR
2.7 / 5 (3) Oct 28, 2008
This find is just another confirmation on the authentic TRUTH of the BIBLE. See a testimony of a scientist who is a Ph.D. Physicist:

Web-site: http://www.Scienc...ible.net


The Bible does have truth. It has myth as well. There are a myriad of stories based on historical events that have been colored by accounts of dieties or other supernatural phenomenon. I saw no proof of "truth" of any supernatural aspect of the Bible in this article or your link to Science Bible.

"The velocity of light is not the speed limit!"

To back this up he uses simply asserts that you can not measure an EM wave without interference. Just more proof that blind faith can distort the logic/reason of anybody; even a Ph.D. Physicist
MGraser
4 / 5 (1) Oct 28, 2008
I agree with GIR and was going to say much the same thing. It would be surprising if the major historical events written in the bible were false. It wouldn't make any sense to do so, since it would be so easy to prove false. Now, putting in a political spin or two wouldn't be out of the question.

Regarding the meticulous care taken with biblical writings, we are in pretty good shape at the moment. However, there was a period in the early centuries when well meaning monks would purposefully modify the contents of the bible so that it would better agree with their understanding of what the bible was "supposed to say". I believe that today, they've been mostly caught (as much as possible, based on available documents) and written back to their original, albeit harder to understand, passages.

For anyone interested, I would recommend a very easy to read book on textual criticism, written by a christian. It is very enlightening and has something for everyone - christian and non-christian alike. It's called "Misquoting Jesus" by Bart D Ehrman.
freethinking
1.5 / 5 (8) Oct 28, 2008
Scientist would never try to deceive anyone, therefore the Bible can't be true...If the same logic was held about the bible as with science, then you cant believe anyone. See below on the greatest science hoxes (at least from NewScientist viewpoint.

http://www.newsci...ILC-hmts&nsref=specrt13_head_Frauds 'n' fakers
D666
2.3 / 5 (3) Oct 28, 2008
I agree with GIR and was going to say much the same thing. It would be surprising if the major historical events written in the bible were false.


Actually, it wouldn't be surprising at all. the bible is not an historical document, and wasn't written as one. In fact, even in "non-religious" settings, the idea of even attempting to write an objective historical account of *anything* is a fairly recent concept. The bible was written by religious leaders to give the common rabble something to conform to. It is a series of morality tales. You can in fact tell how old the various tales are by the degree of primiteveness of the "lesson". For instance, stories of Abraham, Lot, and others like them are perfectly in line with the way people would have thought at that time. The fact that the ethical level of the bible improves in step with the ethical level of society in general in early historical times is all the proof you really need that the bible was written for people, by people, and about people, with no supernatural influence required.
D666
3 / 5 (4) Oct 28, 2008
See below on the greatest science hoxes (at least from NewScientist viewpoint.


I really get a chuckle with theists try to use events like piltdown man as some kind of proof of the moral inferiority of science. So let's examine this. Piltdown man hoax was exposed by.... Religion? No. Science. The Cardiff Giant was exposed by.... Religion? No. Science. Cold fusion? Science. Well, you can see where this is going. Science polices itself, because science is ruled by something that theists just can't get -- called "intellectual honesty". Religion on the other hand, has things like the grotto at Fatima, the Shroud of Turin, enough pieces of the true cross to build the original ark, etc etc etc, none of which would ever be exposed if it was left to the theists.
GIR
5 / 5 (2) Oct 28, 2008
See below on the greatest science hoxes (at least from NewScientist viewpoint.


I like the spaghetti tree. Are you actually saying that an April Fool's Day joke broadcast by the BBC counts as one of the greatest scientific hoaxes? That JOKE (not hoax) had nothing to do with the scientific community. It was the media.

BTW I was never trying to say the Bible is a historical document. I was saying that some of the stories in it would be inspired in part by real world events, people, ect. so it would make sense to find evidence of the existance of a few sparse characters.
D666
3 / 5 (4) Oct 28, 2008

BTW I was never trying to say the Bible is a historical document. I was saying that some of the stories in it would be inspired in part by real world events, people, ect. so it would make sense to find evidence of the existance of a few sparse characters.


Oh, I have no doubt that this is true. For instance, the myth of the tower of Babel could very easily be based on the Israelites' exposure to Bablylon, which would be a ziggarut stretching practically to heaven (from the POV of stone-age people), filled with people from all over, speaking many different languages (remember that Babylon was a centre of trade and culture). After that experience, the Israelites would have backfilled the legend of Babel, and turned it into a morality tale.
freethinking
1.3 / 5 (4) Oct 28, 2008
New Scientist is not a Christian science journal. They like physorg are quite hostile to the Christian and or conservative view points. It was science that prove that the hoxes were hoxes, just as science keeps showing that people who try to deny the historical reliablity of the Bible are foolish.

Now it is correct that the Bible is not just a historical document, it is also poetry, etc and etc.... But when it states that this or that happened then, this or that actually happened.

Now you can argue legitemately that what happened was natural, trickery, or by God. For example, did the walls of Jerico fall down because of earthquake or that angles pushed them down, or because or bad building design? But to argue that the walls didnt fall down, given the reliablity of the text, just because you dont believe in God, is ignorace.
Quantum_Conundrum
3.3 / 5 (4) Oct 28, 2008

oh, so there really is an angel of death that kills babies unless a slaughtered animals' blood is smeared around the door frame. I don't think I could have breathed another second if that weren't true. Aren't we lucky the angel of death is busy killing babies someplace else! Of course, the god of mercy is here, but the god of wrath is over there?


The passover is a very interesting Biblical historical event.

The wrath came not because that is what God desired, but rather because it is the penalty of un-repentant sin. The egyptians refused to obey God for their own sakes, and refused to allow Israel to go free.

Egypt destroyed Israel's firstborn, and you reap what you sow. God's judgement against Egypt was to restore on their own heads the evil that they had done to Israel.

If sin is neither punished nor atoned for, then God would not be righteous.

However, those who trusted God and obeyed and killed the passover lamb and spread its blood on the doorpost (typification of Jesus' death on the cross), are spared. Why?

Do they "deserve" to be spared? No more than the egyptians!

No, the only difference is one group repented of their sin and asked God to forgive them, and obeyed God, trusting in his promise of a redeemer. The other group disobeyed God and wanted nothing to do with him, therefore, they were destroyed.

Egypt enslaved Israel and killed their sons, starting in Moses generation.

God punished Egypt by spoiling them and taking away all their gold and silver, (payment for the work of those generations of slaves), and as well, destroying their first born. They counted his promise to lay down the life of His only Begotten Son as a light thing, therefore he took the first begotten son of each man.

====

mercy and wrath in human terms must coexist. If there is no wrath for evil deeds, then "mercy" would be a meaningless word.

Mercy is not given to people who deserve it, because then it wouldn't be mercy.

Nobody deserves mercy. Mercy is given based on repentence and faith. Even in a modern secular court, a person who is obviously repentent receives mercy, whereas a person who obviously couldn't care less receives the full wrath of the law.


There is no unrighteousness with God.
Quantum_Conundrum
2.6 / 5 (5) Oct 28, 2008

oh, so there really is an angel of death that kills babies unless a slaughtered animals' blood is smeared around the door frame. I don't think I could have breathed another second if that weren't true. Aren't we lucky the angel of death is busy killing babies someplace else! Of course, the god of mercy is here, but the god of wrath is over there?


God is merciful eveyrwhere, but he is also chastises men everywhere. "As many as I love I rebuke and chasten."

What? Do you think it is entirely coincidental that our economy in America is in such upheaval?

You atheists and agnostics will surely laugh at me for saying this, but if you want to wreck the American economy, the best thing you can possibly do is continue to be an atheist or agnostic. The next best things are to promote homosexuality and "pro-choice".

YOu want to mock the account of Lot leaving Sodom, but look around the world for a moment.

What do you think the tsunami of 2004 was?
What about Katrina, Rita, Ike demolishing entire regions to the point that they were uninhabitable.

"Natural disasters", to be sure. But "God's hand is in the whirlwind".

====

Belief in God is not a matter of science, it is a matter of morality.

You do not like the idea that man is subject to a higher morality, who is the Creator, so you simply choose to ignore it.
GIR
3 / 5 (4) Oct 29, 2008
Belief in God is not a matter of science, it is a matter of morality.

You do not like the idea that man is subject to a higher morality, who is the Creator, so you simply choose to ignore it.


Belief in God allows people to substitute morality based on true thought and introspection with their own particular interpretation (and often times someone else's) of a none to clear book. Crusades, holy wars, inquisitions, burning at the stake, genocide, biggotry, unjust imprisonment and execution, suppression of free speach/thought, suppression of the advancement of the human race through scientific achievement, ect. This is the historical morality of christianity more so than love thine neighbor.

It is not that I do not like the idea of being subject to a higher morality and therefore choose to ignore it. I don't like having a morality dictated to me by religious "scholars" who can't even agree on what the book of fables they are reading really says.

I have to look up the ten commandments to list them off but you know what? Any person who tries to live a moral life avoids killing, stealing, adultury, and the rest. There is a lot more gray areas in morality than the Bible addresses in such a straightforward manner.

Most good people put real thought into the "right" course of action. When I have a moral decision to make I would much rather trust the real world advice of friends, family, and others who may be affected as opposed to asking a priest what the Bible says.

What do you think the tsunami of 2004 was?
What about Katrina, Rita, Ike demolishing entire regions to the point that they were uninhabitable.


Weather. Patterns that have existed since before we built cities in their direct path.

You atheists and agnostics will surely laugh at me for saying this, but if you want to wreck the American economy, the best thing you can possibly do is continue to be an atheist or agnostic. The next best things are to promote homosexuality and "pro-choice".


I fear you are serious -.-

Believe in my god or he will destroy you. I say if you want to wreck the American economy and be directly responsible for a full scale nuclear war the best thing you can do in continue to worship God instead of Ra.

An argument like that will never convince anyone who doesn't believe in your particular god. You have not a shred more evidence for your argument than I do for mine.
D666
3 / 5 (6) Oct 29, 2008
It was science that prove that the hoxes were hoxes, just as science keeps showing that people who try to deny the historical reliablity of the Bible are foolish.


Maybe in your fantasy world, but not in the real world that the rest of us live in.


Now it is correct that the Bible is not just a historical document, it is also poetry, etc and etc.... But when it states that this or that happened then, this or that actually happened.


Actually, very little of the bible can be shown to correspond to actual events. For instance, the whole exodus thing -- the biblical account is off by 500 years from the historically accepted date of that particular pharaoh (name escapes me -- not enough coffee yet), there is no mention AT ALL of the Israelites being there or leaving in Egyptian history, and there is no archaeological evidence at all of thousands of Israelites wandering the Sinai for 40 years. Similarly, the description of events in the Soloman/David era as it relates to the political landscape of neighbouring nations is either way off or total fantasy. I could go on for a long time, without even going near the creationism crap. And remember, most of these other nations (like the babylonians and egyptians in particular) were really anal about keeping records, which the anciant Israelites clearly were not, so in any conflict of information, I'd bet against the jewish version of anything.

The bottom line is that, despite fundamentalist insistence that the bible is an historical document, there is simply no support for that claim.
randyb
3.3 / 5 (7) Oct 30, 2008
1 Corinthians 2:14

A person who isn't spiritual doesn't accept the teachings of God's Spirit. He thinks they're nonsense. He can't understand them because a person must be spiritual to evaluate them. (GOD'S WORD translations)

For the natural man is not able to take in the things of the Spirit of God: for they seem foolish to him, and he is not able to have knowledge of them, because such knowledge comes only through the Spirit. (Bible in Basic English translation)

But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. (King James version)
D666
3 / 5 (6) Oct 30, 2008
1 Corinthians 2:14


So, if I may summarize your rebuttal: In order to rebut a bunch of people who obviously don't believe in christianity or the bible, you quote from the bible, the book they don't believe in.

Yeah, that'll work.

Tell you what -- I'll give you a couple of quotes from the Sacred Book of Spaghetti Monster. Will that make you change your mind? Didn't think so. See how that works?

GIR
3 / 5 (6) Oct 30, 2008
2 Spag 3:7
Lo and The Flying Spaghetti Monster looked out into the void and dropped a single meatball from His plate of saucy goodness. Thus He begat all things of this universe great and small, made in His image.

3 Marinara 8:27
The Giant Spaghetti Monster said unto His people "Heed not those with out faith for they are truely blind and thier reward shall be wretched indeed. Into the bottomless pot of rancid marinara shall I cast them where they shall simmer for all eternity!"

THE FLYING SPAGHETTI MONSTER'S WORD translations.

Did I scare you into believing? Were you not convinced by my flawless logic? I quoted the Holy Book of the Divne Pasta. That book is truth beyond question after all. Still not a believer, huh?

If someone does not believe in the Bible please do not quote it as fact or evidence of anything to them. It will have the same effect that my quotes had on you.

If you must quote the Bible do it to show the value of its message and teachings as opposed to using it like a book of unquestionable facts. Doing the latter will close off minds to your argument as quickly as a quote from the Holy Book of the Divine Pasta would close yours.

Modernmystic
2.8 / 5 (5) Oct 30, 2008
It's quite telling that this article currently has the most comments on the site.

If God to you is nothing more than the tooth fairy, why waste so much time and effort on the subject?
MarsM
2 / 5 (4) Oct 31, 2008
If God to you is nothing more than the tooth fairy, why waste so much time and effort on the subject?


Even if you don't belief, religion has a big influence on our daily lives because other people do belief.
D666
3 / 5 (4) Oct 31, 2008
It's quite telling that this article currently has the most comments on the site.

If God to you is nothing more than the tooth fairy, why waste so much time and effort on the subject?


This article has 33 comments. The one about cannabis has 77. 77 > 33.

Unfortunately, although god may be a myth, fundamentalists are very real, and very insistent that we see, do, and think their way. I think it's bad that fundamentalists want to teach creationism in science class. I think it's bad that fundamentalists want to suppress certain books. I think it's bad that some fundamentalists think you shouldn't be able to get elected unless you share their particular religious views. I think it's bad that some fundamentalists think that I'm not even quite human because I don't share their beliefs. I think it's bad that fundamentalists think it's ok to suppress people's rights based on the fundamentalists' beliefs. I'm not gay, but if it's gay rights today (and they're successful), it'll be something else tomorrow.

And please note that this is all limited to discussion of North-American based christian fundamentalists. We haven't even taken into account the wackos who think it's ok to blow things up in the name of their religion.

So yeah, it's a little bit more than just a parlor discussion.
Modernmystic
2.3 / 5 (4) Oct 31, 2008
It's quite telling that this article currently has the most comments on the site.

If God to you is nothing more than the tooth fairy, why waste so much time and effort on the subject?


This article has 33 comments. The one about cannabis has 77. 77 > 33.

Unfortunately, although god may be a myth, fundamentalists are very real, and very insistent that we see, do, and think their way. I think it's bad that fundamentalists want to teach creationism in science class. I think it's bad that fundamentalists want to suppress certain books. I think it's bad that some fundamentalists think you shouldn't be able to get elected unless you share their particular religious views. I think it's bad that some fundamentalists think that I'm not even quite human because I don't share their beliefs. I think it's bad that fundamentalists think it's ok to suppress people's rights based on the fundamentalists' beliefs. I'm not gay, but if it's gay rights today (and they're successful), it'll be something else tomorrow.

And please note that this is all limited to discussion of North-American based christian fundamentalists. We haven't even taken into account the wackos who think it's ok to blow things up in the name of their religion.

So yeah, it's a little bit more than just a parlor discussion.


It really is funny, I guess it just depends on which side of the fence you're on. I see religion as being threatened by an ever over reaching and vehemently secularist federal government. It won't be long before you won't be able to wear a cross whilst walking on a public side walk...we can't be mixing church and state now...

I do see your point however. I honestly do, one can't be both honest and blind to fundamentalists trying to get faith into government. The problem however, is that you don't seem to realize (IMO) that you and they are very close to two sides of the same coin.

Back to my main point however, it does seem that if people REALLY believe that God=Tooth Fairy they spend way too much time and effort on the subject...unless of course they are strapping bombs to themselves. Then again you don't need religion to get people to do that either. In fact one could argue that the problems in the middle East are almost totally politically motivated with religion really only used as a tool for recruitment.
D666
2.6 / 5 (5) Oct 31, 2008
It won't be long before you won't be able to wear a cross whilst walking on a public side walk...we can't be mixing church and state now


Yeah, that's your typical straw-man argument. No-one's suggesting that, but it sure sounds good if yo want to sound like a victim. My problem with fundamentalists is that they want *me* to wear a cross (metaphorically speaking).



that you don't seem to realize (IMO) that you and they are very close to two sides of the same coin


Sorry, no. In order for that to be, I'd have to demand that fundamentalists teach evolution in sunday school, that christians be open to performing same-sex acts themselves, etc. I'm not trying to get into their space. I'm trying to keep them out of mine (again, metaphorically speaking. this isn't just about me or just about you).


In fact one could argue that the problems in the middle East are almost totally politically motivated with religion really only used as a tool for recruitment


One could also argue the moon is made of cheese. Jeez, come on. That comment is just idiotic. Beside the fact that "religion as a recruitment tool" isn't any kind of an excuse, and doesn't mke it any less guilty, you have the problem that the people doing the bombing sound very very very very religious. It's a religious thing.
period.



Velanarris
2.8 / 5 (4) Oct 31, 2008
Suggest historians learn a lesson from this.

The Bible is neither fake nor doctored.

It might be difficult for you to believe that, but it happens to be true.


That's funny. Stephen King's books commonly take place in Maine. Maine is a real place, therefore "The Stand" happened.

Just because someone used a real place doesn't mean the story is real.
thales
3 / 5 (4) Oct 31, 2008
Back to my main point however, it does seem that if people REALLY believe that God=Tooth Fairy they spend way too much time and effort on the subject...


Really? It seems to me that if people REALLY believe God exists, they spend way too much time and effort on the subject of his existence.
Modernmystic
3 / 5 (6) Oct 31, 2008
Yeah, that's your typical straw-man argument. No-one's suggesting that, but it sure sounds good if yo want to sound like a victim.


Yeah and in the '50s if someone suggested that one day the ten commandments (the basis for common law and hence our legal system) would be taken out of the yard of a courthouse you'd have gotten deep belly laughs from everyone...

You can take that spin if you want, it makes your arguments sound non threatening. The cold hard truth of the matter is that what I said is not outside the realm of possibility at all in a few decades.

My problem with fundamentalists is that they want *me* to wear a cross (metaphorically speaking).


Well I can't speak for fundamentalists not being one. I suppose you could be correct, however speaking as someone who sees the slow but sure abolition of religion from all public activity YOUR argument comes across as a strawman and you apparently wear the victim mantle well to when it suits you.

Sorry, no. In order for that to be, I'd have to demand that fundamentalists teach evolution in sunday school, that christians be open to performing same-sex acts themselves, etc. I'm not trying to get into their space. I'm trying to keep them out of mine (again, metaphorically speaking. this isn't just about me or just about you).


Actually, believe it or not their tax money is paying for those schools every bit as much as yours. AND like it or not they should have a say in the curriculum, whether you think so or not. Therein lies the problem, they're being FORCED to pay for an education for their kids that they don't want. Even though I (and I strongly suspect you) think creationism is bunk they simply have NO CHOICE...unless of course they can afford private school (pffft).


That comment is just idiotic.


Hmmm just a TAD off color.

Beside the fact that "religion as a recruitment tool" isn't any kind of an excuse, and doesn't mke it any less guilty, you have the problem that the people doing the bombing sound very very very very religious. It's a religious thing.
period.


Actually no, it's a political thing period. Just like Northern Ireland. The Irish Republicans wanted the English out of Ireland. What was the easiest way to whip up uneducated young men into picking up arms to achieve this goal? Make it about Catholics vs. Protestants...voilla now you have a terrorist army willing to do ANYTHING you tell them to because "God" is on your side.

It's actually one of the oldest political tricks in the book, and blatantly obvious.

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