Holy Bloodline Believers Claim Their Beliefs Shouldn't Be Lumped in with "Extremely Fringe Stuff"
Yesterday Scott Wolter challenged critics to provide evidence regarding the Kensington Rune Stone that would meet the standard of admissibility for a court of law. That’s a rather silly an arbitrary standard for a scientific claim, given that evidence in law courts isn’t meant to establish the truth, particularly evidence admitted by the defense, which need not do more than establish reasonable doubt. Courts are also not always right, either. Courts have determined that evidence supported racial segregation and eugenics, among other things. Besides, Wolter himself failed to provide enough legal evidence to convince a judge when he was sued in 1988 and failed to prove he could distinguish a valuable Lake Superior agate from a worthless Brazilian agate.
But the larger problem remains: Even if we accept the “legal” standard for the Rune Stone, would that not disqualify all of Wolter’s other claims, since nothing about the Holy Bloodline conspiracy would rise to the standard of hearsay, let alone admissible evidence? (Even the lawyer Wolter quotes as a supporter of the authenticity of the Rune Stone denies in the full text of his Facebook posting that the secret codes Wolter alleges to have found actually exist.)
Of course Wolter has a different standard for proof for the Templar-Bloodline claim, because consistency is not among his virtues:
Truth is, historians have little if any documentation to work with about the activities of the pre-Columbian Templars in North America because they conducted in utmost secrecy. That’s why we need to pay especially close attention to symbolism, allegory and code to make headway. It was their preferred mode of communication.
Speaking of the Holy Bloodline conspiracy, it seems that I have gotten into a bit of trouble with goddess believers over that one. The complaint comes from supporters of Mary Starbird.
I’ve never heard of Margaret Starbird, but from what I learned, she is a New Age writer who specializes in the “sacred union” of Jesus and Mary Magdalene. She runs a goddess-themed cult centered on “the truth behind the fiction encountered in The Da Vinci Code.” Starbird claims that Dan Brown used her work in The Da Vinci Code. Starbird reports that the fringe belief in this marriage, which she seems to have encountered through Holy Blood, Holy Grail, shook her Catholic faith and forced her into years of research that led her to believe in the sacred union and a hidden goddess tradition in Christianity. To share her deep spiritual transformation, she founded a limited liability corporation through which she accepts cash payments for information about this sacred and empowering “truth.” She is a regular on the New Age lecture circuit, where she also accepts cash payments for her spiritual revelations.
Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it: I just read about a televangelist with regular-flavor Jesus beliefs who was accused of using church donations to fund a $50 million private jet and $100,000 for a separate home just for his dogs.
Starbird has made some questionable claims over the years, from her linkage of Mary Magdalene to the 9/11 attacks in 2001 to her assertion that the unicorn is really a symbol of Jesus’ omnipotent penis striving to fertilize Mary Magdalene.
I mention this because the followers of Stabird have criticized me for not falling in line behind their goddess-centric belief in a Jesus-Magdalene coupling. One of the believers complains that I do not correctly understand the faith of the Cathars because I reference Peter of les Vaux-de-Cernay in the Historia Albigensis 10-11. She criticizes
… his rather bizarre views on the Cathars, based upon the writing of their enemy, a Roman Catholic and further based upon his own translation of the Latin text. When challenged, in the comment section, about his authority to translate the difficult Latin, his response was that he had been ‘reading Latin since he was a teenager’. There is no mention of studying the language at a University level.
The Latin of this passage isn’t really that difficult, but I have never asked anyone to take my translations at face value. But in this case, you certainly don’t have to: Peter’s text has been translated many times, in both older sources and in a modern critical edition. The trouble, of course, is that there is very little surviving from the Cathars themselves, and most of what we know (or what “esoteric” Christians think they know) about them comes from opponents’ accounts.
In response to this, another “esoteric” Christian calling herself Bishop Katia replied that it was incorrect for skeptics like me to lump their beliefs in with other fringe claims:
It’s okay, we are used to being fringe in this area. It doesn’t mean we believe in many of the less logical myths about Judeo-Christianity such as it originated in Atlantis, or that the Holy Family and half the tribes of Israel were really white non-semitic British people. Archaeology and DNA studies show without exception that the 12 tribes and Jesus’ family were all middle eastern.
Notice the way Katia has elided two different claims to make them seem equally plausible: Belief in a male and female godhead is not a historical claim, but a question of faith. Belief in the marriage of Jesus and Mary Magdalene and the subsequent production of a line of royal babies is a historical claim. A faith-based belief in the former does not imply reality-based evidence for the latter. (For example: One could easily believe in El and Asherah, or Baal and Astarte, ruling the heavens.)
6/5/2016 09:58:29 am
Margaret Starbird set out to prove The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail wrong. She concluded it was historically correct.
6/5/2016 10:04:56 am
To the Gnostics, the Bridal Chamber and the unification of male and female implied the production of the Androgyne and not sexual reproduction. Here lies a clue to the real Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene relationship.
6/5/2016 02:27:01 pm
I tend to believe that Jesus's Father, Joseph probably had arranged a marriage with someone by the time Jesus reached the age of twelve or thirteen. I understand that it was one of the duties of a orthodox Jewish father to arrange such things in order to protect the bloodline and the inheritance. However, I don't believe the marriage was ever consummated. As such, the "Holy Bloodline" is entirely fictional, a product of later writers.
6/5/2016 04:27:36 pm
>>marriage was ever consummated<<
6/5/2016 04:38:51 pm
There was of course also Professor Morton Smith who argued that Jesus Christ was gay (Smith was gay, what a coincidence).
6/6/2016 01:11:51 am
Oops, wrong word, should have been never. How in the world did you ever become such a god-damn know-it-all?
6/6/2016 01:55:58 am
>>How in the world did you ever become such a god-damn know-it-all?<<
6/6/2016 01:23:51 pm
You, dear sir, I suspect have had a very poor and disappointing life. I suspect you are friendless, unmarried, living in a basement somewhere with only yourself as company. In many ways, I feel sorry for you.
6/6/2016 02:37:37 pm
Author Fred Gettings killed himself when he was in his 70s when his wife left him for another man. She protected him from the world during their marriage.
6/6/2016 02:48:15 pm
I would not call my life "disappointing" !!
6/14/2016 07:39:12 am
He might do i t, at any age, or not. Not much inheritance to protect in a family of poor carpenter, they didn't have a land ownership. And also a male could for ex. like some woman, and ask his father to arrange it, there were options as you see. And also the pressure for Jewish males to get married became strong after II c., was not as strong during Jesus' times.
6/5/2016 03:28:48 pm
Yes, such beliefs *should* be lumped in with other fringe claims. Rather than leave such beliefs in the realm of faith, to be accepted or rejected by the individual, there is also the claim of a bloodline. What they continue to ignore, is the lack of any evidence that would support such a claim. The same can be said of the alleged "Goddess worship" within Christianity.
6/5/2016 04:10:38 pm
A good overview of the myths about Mary Magdalene was recently published by Massimo Polidoro in Skeptical Inquirer - May / June 2016.
6/5/2016 04:34:10 pm
Unfortunate that Polidoro could not provide English language references and footnotes....
6/6/2016 03:39:20 am
Think yourself lucky his article is available in Englsh at all. Most of the world does not have English as a first language.
6/6/2016 09:41:58 am
The subject matter is covered in academic English Language books. Nobody has traced the first known example of the depiction of the Ascension of the Virgin Mary or if there is a parallel apocryphal Catholic text that the artwork is based upon. All that exists is the Catholic tradition. I researched.
6/6/2016 09:46:57 am
Polidoro implied in his article that the artistic depiction of the Ascension of the Virgin Mary was based on Apocrypha but no English experts are aware of this.
6/5/2016 04:45:16 pm
I am NOT A LAWYER...but I think what they're (obliquely) referring to is are these:
6/5/2016 05:49:22 pm
I note the pervading references to "evidence" being formed by "opinion".
6/6/2016 11:18:14 am
David "O. N." Johnson's thoughts provoking Wolter's blog topic can be found here:
6/6/2016 12:38:59 pm
Here is a partial reply to Mr. Johnson: Where does Mr. Wolter get his data? Let him cite his sources from the technical literature if he has any. Does he make up all his own science? If he made measurements, then what are they? How did he derive them? What was his protocol? Where are his field notes? When were they written? Did he do a pH test on present day Runestone Hill? This is a park, a groomed landscape and not the original soil. It has been so for some years. Did he take that into account? Mr. Wolter has no evidence. He is making it up out of whole cloth! This is all irrelevant anyway. The artifact was found under a quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.). There is none there today. It appears to be grass. The conditions are completely different.
6/6/2016 12:54:54 pm
Let me give Mr. Johnson and all of you another paper you can review. It is on the physical chemistry of calcite dissolution. The solubility values in it were experimentally determined. It also gives some values at very high levels of CO2 which would be found in the soils under an aspen tree. Frear, G.L. and John Johnston (1929), “The Solubility of Calcium Carbonate (Calcite) in Certain Aqueous Solutions at 25 degrees,” Journal of the American Chemical Society, vol. 51, pp. 2082-2093
6/6/2016 01:47:12 pm
The geology of Winchell is from 1910 and obsolete. Why cling to it? The geologist Abraham Gottlob Werner (1749 - 1817) made many contributions to geology and mineralogy. He is best known for his theory that basalt is a sedimentary rock that precipitates from sea water. He was dead wrong. Go to Hawaii and watch if form directly from molten lava at Kilauea. Werner’s geology is obsolete. Basalt is an igneous rock. We do not cling to obsolete geology. That is an inappropriate use of authority and has no place in science.
6/6/2016 02:47:41 pm
I might add that Winchell does not explain exactly how he comes to his estimation of the age of the graywacke. He appears to use the color or shade of the surface or patina. However, Winchell was probably not aware of the so-called Weber-Fechner Law which crudely approximates the human eye's perception of shade as logarithmic, so each step in a sequence is an order of magnitude greater than the step before it. If a shade of gray or a color appears to be twice as dark, it in effect is 10 times as dark. If it appears three times as dark, it in effect is 100 times as dark and so forth.
Man in Alexandria
6/6/2016 12:08:16 pm
LOL! A court with Scott as lawyer, Judge, and jury. LOL! Those with new information proving a modern origin of the KRS do not need Scott to admit to his scientific mistakes or for him to agree with their information. He is irrelevant.
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