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A fairly accurate, but incomplete INDEX of Posts & good overview of this blog READ SOME REASONS TO REJECT ORTHODOX JUDAISM my April 2014 post or click link above. Highlighted words lead to other posts almost all in my blog. Born into an Orthodox Jewish family (1950's) and went to Orthodox Yeshiva from kindergarten thru High School plus some Beis Medrash.Became an agnostic in my 20's and an atheist later on. My blog will discuss the arguments for god and Orthodox Judaism and will provide counter arguments. I no longer take comments. My blog uses academic sources, the Torah, Talmud and commentators to justify my assertions. The posts get updated. INDEX OF POSTS SEE MAY 2017 or click link above.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Proof of God from Mummy

Updated thru 10/31/2015

Being that we are in the Halloween season 2015, this macabre and ghoulish Proof for G-d  seemed most appropriate to discuss. 

The Proof  The Trick

Basically the proof argues that dead  holy Jewish sages (or the righteous) have not decomposed like other ordinary beings. They have had special supernatural protection.

Response The Treat 

It has been found that under certain conditions dead people and dead animals can become preserved. These conditions may occur naturally by accident or may be deliberate. Are found preserved animals also holy ? Are all found ancient preserved people also holy ? 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mummy  Self-mummification - “Monks whose bodies remain incorrupt without any traces of deliberate mummification are venerated by some Buddhists who believe they successfully were able to mortify their flesh to death.”

There are many examples of non Jewish people resisting decomposition after death. (Search the Web  - for example http://mentalfloss.com/article/58170/5-bodies-refused-rot http://muttermuseum.org/exhibitions/the-soap-lady  There are many other examples.)

{ETA 10/14/2015 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xin_Zhui  Xin Zhui (206 BC – 220 AD). “She gained fame more than 2,000 years after her death, when her tomb was discovered inside a hill known as Mawangdui, in Changsha, Hunan, China. After opening the tomb, workers discovered her exceptionally preserved remains alongside hundreds of valuable artifacts and documents.”  “Xin Zhui's body was remarkably preserved. Her skin was soft and moist, with muscles that still allowed for her arms and legs to flex at the joints.” So was this Chinese noble that enjoyed an extravagant lifestyle also such a righteous / holy person that her body received divine protection ?  Notice after she was exposed from her tomb her deterioration rate increases requiring intervention.}

Cool Conditions, Dry Conditions, Bogs,  Sand, Chemicals, Lack of air  and Adipocere are some of the accidental or deliberate ways a dead body may resist decay. {ETA 10/14/2015 "All human bodies and body parts disintegrate with time unless they are preserved with embalming fluids or waxes, or by special conditions such Otzi the Iceman of Bolzano as alkaline soil, absence of oxygen, bacteria, worms, heat, light, and the like. There are many cases of such burials and bodies, known as adipocere. Some corpses are "saponified (in which burial in lime-impregnated soil converts the body fat into a hard soap that resists putrefaction)"  ";  From an article - the link is provided at the end of this post}

We must also rule out any possible natural explanation - including: fraud, false reporting, incomplete or inaccurate reporting, misunderstood reports, or  deliberate or accidental use of body preserving techniques that may have been used. 

Religious people need to provide scientific evidence that holy sages are resistant to decomposition. This could include double blind studies. Until they do so we reject  the hypothesis that holy people resist decomposition as compared to other people. 

It is also an example of confirmation bias. For example when a particular holy person is found preserved that example is touted while the vast vast majority of holy sages have decomposed just like anybody else. 

It is also an argument from ignorance. Just because we can not explain a phenomena we can not conclude supernatural being(s) are involved.  Maybe if we studied the phenomena a bit more natural explanations may arise. 

ETA Came across an article that confirms some of what I have been writing about http://skepdic.com/incorrupt.html

ETA Like the non decomposing dead bodies, many proofs for supernatural beings do not decay away despite the numerous stakes driven thru them. Evidence of Zombies ? 

ETA 10/18/2015 - Some people have seen recent photographs of say a  preserved saint in a pristine condition. These photos are of the saints after they have been conditioned with wax or in other ways to make them look pristine.  When they were originally exhumed they did not look as pretty and in fact after being exhumed their rate of decay increased.  If they had supernatural protection why did their rate of decay increase after being exhumed ?  It was their burial environment that  kept them preserved and after being exhumed those conditions were gone.

ETA 10/31/2015 Before we can even begin to entertain the possibility of alleged perfect (or imperfect) preserved body being evidence of supernatural, the body immediately after being exhumed and the conditions of the body's gravesite  need to be examined by scientists to rule out natural causes. To my knowledge this has never been done.) 

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