Supplemental 13: Barrie Schwortz

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Enjoy the podcast:

https://anchor.fm/skeptics-and-seekers/episodes/Supplemental-13-Barrie-Schwortz-e2iisv

Barrie Schwortz if the foremost expert on the shroud. And we have him for an interview. Dale and Andrew pepper him with audience questions. Barrie is gracious and informative. David even pops in for a question of his own. No matter what you think about the shroud, you will want to listen to this one.

SHROUD BONUS PART 10A- SHROUD EXPERT BARRIE SCHWORTZ INTERVIEW INTRO

Taking a time-out in our Shroud series, this episode will be a supplemental bonus program whereby in celebration of the 40th anniversary of STURP in 1978, both pro-Shroud proponent Dale and Shroud skeptic Andrew will conduct an interview with official STURP photographer world-renowned Shroud expert Barrie Schwortz.  The interview will cover multiple questions posed to me during the first 8 Parts of my Shroud series Podcast by lay Shroud skeptics.

Barrie, is a personal friend and was very helpful during my own research of this religious relic over the course of the last 2 years or so.  He is Jewish and not a believing Christian, yet he thinks that the evidence very strongly proves the Shroud is authentic, in the sense that it belonged to the historical Jesus.  The topics included in this discussion include everything from credibility of the STURP scientists and other Pro-Shroud experts, the infamous 1988 C-14 dating results, the Bishop D’Arcis Memo of 1389, a case for the positive historical provenance of the Shroud back to the historical Jesus, discussion of the Shroud’s “MRF’s” (as presented in Podcasts #4-5 in my Shroud series proper) as well as addressing some Counter-features such as the various anatomical inaccuracies and the Pro-Paint Observations discovered by Shroud-skeptic Walter McCrone.

I think this bonus episode should be very helpful and informative for those following along in my Shroud series, my sincere thanks goes out to Andrew for being willing to co-host the show with me, David J. for recording the program and Barrie Schwortz for agreeing to do me the favour of appearing on our show 😊

Recommended Sources (for further study):

1. Barrie Schwortz’s website = https://shroud.com/ is by far the single best website providing freely available information on the Shroud from both sides (pro and skeptic alike), provides pictures, scholarly and popular level articles, book recommendations, etc- on the topic of the Shroud of Turin, you name it, Barrie’s got it on his site. It is telling that even the skeptical websites online consistently link to various articles on Barrie’s site rather than providing their own material. For anyone sincerely interested in studying the Shroud and its evidence, it would be positively foolish to overlook the importance of Barrie’s website and its contributions in furthering Shroud research.

2. DETAILS ON STURP- https://shroud.com/78exam.htm (links to STURP’s operational test plan, final conclusions, freely available peer-reviewed science journal articles and list of STURP team members involved in the project.

3. The 2 peer-reviewed articles on the Invisible Reweave Hypothesis (to explain the C-14 results without appeal to the supernatural like I do with the Neutron Flux Hypothesis- see Part 1 Podcast for 4 such possible options);

a) ROGERS, Raymond N. – “Studies on the Radiocarbon Sample from the Shroud of Turin” [January 20, 2005] Thermochimica Acta 425 (2005) pp.189-194. (Includes 5 illustrations). = http://www.sindone.info/ROGERS-3.PDF .

b) BENFORD, M. Sue and MARINO, Joseph G. – Discrepancies in the radiocarbon dating area of the Turin shroud – Chemistry Today, vol 26 n 4, [July-August 2008] = https://www.shroud.com/pdfs/benfordmarino2008.pdf .

4. The Article that Barrie mentioned when Addressing the Anatomical aspects of the Shroud Man;

MARINELLI, E. – FANTI, G. – CAGNAZZO, Alessandro – Computerized anthropometric analysis of the Man of the Turin Shroud [June 1999] (From the 1999 Richmond Conference) = https://www.shroud.com/pdfs/marineli.pdf .

5. Barrie Also Gave us those Two Attached Photos Regarding the Face Allegedly being too narrow or inaccurate (see the two picture attachments here). Here is what he said;

I (Barrie) have also attached two 72dpi photos you can include with your podcast post:

facescompared one side 72dpi.jpg
Left image = Shroud as it appears in a typical contrast enhanced version
Center Image = the area I selected to lighten by 15%.
Right image = the selected area lightened by 15%. No other manipulation applied.

Face both sides 72dpi.jpg – In this version I applied the same correction to both sides of the facial image. As you can see, the face appears more natural and complete. This is a direct result of the banding found running throughout the entire cloth and represents the different batches of yarn used to weave the cloth. In the ancient method of weaving, each batch of yarn was bleached individually so they were all slightly different from each other and some bands took up the image differently than the adjacent bands.

When the Shroud image is contrast enhanced (which it always is in the photo negative view) the fainter areas of the image are pushed down into the black making the face appear more narrow than it actually is. However, as this image demonstrates, the full facial data is actually there.

If you decide to post the images, please include the following copyright notice with them:
©1978 Barrie M. Schwortz Collection, STERA, Inc.

facescompared one side 72dpi.jpgface both sides 72dpi.jpg

6. Barrie Also emailed me today with a link to that Article he mentioned on Walter McCrone, he described it this way;

“One more link you might find useful. I received a rather nasty letter from a McCrone follower a few years ago and published his letter along with this response:

Answering A Skeptic (Response dated 16 May 2014 to an e-mail received from Gary A. Kentgen on 6 January 2014)” = https://www.shroud.com/pdfs/answering.pdf .

7. Here is STERA’s main Facebook page (stera.inc) = https://www.facebook.com/stera.inc/ .

8. Attached List of Interview Questions (for those who want to follow along, this is for your ease of reference as to what question is being answered).

BARRIE SCHWORTZ INTERVIEW QUESTIONS- SAT NOV 10TH, 2018

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29 thoughts on “Supplemental 13: Barrie Schwortz

  1. Good interview, thanks to all who participated. The most telling moment in the interview was when Andrew asked Barrie what his positive evidence for the shroud’s authenticity was. He spent the next couple minutes debunking the work of “skeptics” trying to disconfirm the shroud. This is exactly the issue I have with this entire enterprise. And it shows a lack of understanding what true skepticism is.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good episode. 👍

    Like

  3. Hi Dale, I found the show format much easier to follow, and consequently more convincing, yes.
    I think the problem with a monologue, is it’s well, a monologue and if you drift off for a few seconds and come back to protein neutron acid whatnot, you’re lost. I also feel like you deal with a lot of hypotheticals and layer on ‘well if you grant x, then y is maybe probable, certainly not impossible’. Barrie was challenged and replied more succinctly. It may be a question of how we learn, and I found his style more straightforward.
    I also think Barrie comes across as unbiased, whereas, say what you like, I think you are more biased than you’re willing to admit (Because of some of the things you grant in other areas). 😉

    Fair enough, I accept the shroud can’t be explained and is baffling to science to date. I also concede you’re probably less of a loon than people thought you were before. 😉 😉 🙂

    Also, next time I see Papa Francesco, I’ll be sure to have words in his shell-like.

    Like

    1. .

      “I want people to take the Shroud evidence more seriously than skeptics like Alan, Tyler B. and Chris, etc.

      I did listen to this one. However, you said everyone has to be an honest seeker Dale. Why should Alan, Tyler and Chris and TARA spend more time on the Shroud than they do on E-meters? I just did a quick look, there are approx (idk) 15 million Scientologists worldwide. They use an E-meter to measure Thetans, and they take all of this just as seriously as you and Barrie Schwortz take the evidence for the religious significance of the Shroud. Why are you two giving preferential treatment to Christianity? Could it be because you were brought up in the Abrahamic Traditions and not Scientology?

      BTW….imo Barrie has turned his 15 minutes of fame into a lifetime and is travelling the world on someone else’s dime. And he thinks he’s covering his own arz by believing in the Jewish God and Christian God simultaneously. Now if he could just ‘get in good’ with Allah…..all three Gods will approve of him. Phewwweee!

      That in no way means Barrie (if you’re reading this) that I don’t love you as a human being…. I do. You seem well spoken and kind and are living a very interesting life. Good on ya bud!

      But? Barrie and DAG….go get those Thetans checked out! They are as devilish as demons. ha ha ha xoxo

      Love and Light
      Tara

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Auditing_(Scientology)#E-meter

      Like

      1. .
        Yup….Pascals Wager.

        ‘..the argument that it is in one’s own best interest to behave as if God exists, since the possibility of eternal punishment in hell outweighs any advantage of believing otherwise….”

        This is a very self serving question. How to save yourselves…. Barrie and Dale? Maybe you should ask Barrie if you can be his sidekick Dale, carry his bags to the airport perhaps. Meanwhile I will never choose an immoral God…period. The minute I did that, I myself would be choosing to be immoral. What truly moral God would wish me to behave in such a way?

        Still, all said in a calm loving motherly tone Dale…you will morally mature when the time suits you. xoxo

        Love and Light
        Tara

        NUMBERS 31:17-18 God commanded Moses to kill all of the male Midianite children and “kill every woman who has slept with a man, but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.”

        Like

  4. How come STURP`s 1981 Summary failed to include a single mention of the negative (tone-reversed) body image, i.e. that most celebrated discovery of Secondo Pia from way back in 1898?

    Was not that THE most unexpected distinguishing feature of the body image, given that tone-reversal (negative to positive) generated something almost photograph-like in character (leading some to conclude – wrongly in my view – that the TS body image itself must also have been acquired by photography) ?

    It needs to be said loud and clear that photography is not the only means by which negative images can be acquired. Imprinting via direct skin-cloth body-contact is the more likely mechanism, centuries prior to imaging across air gaps with light-sensitive silver-salt emulsions etc.

    Direct contact-imprinting, whether in a 1st or 14th century setting (I prefer the latter) was dismissed by STURP (indeed its team leader Dr. John Jackson no less) with indecent haste.

    I`ll return to explain why – should anyone out there be interested…

    See my most recent posting re STURP`s several perceived shortcomings:

    http://www.shroudofturinwithoutallthehype.wordpress.com

    Like

    1. Thanks Daledag

      My WordPress hitmeter makes clear which awe-inspiring part of the world you reside in – one I and missus really wish to visit sometime. That should probably be soon – given our advancing years- but that`s as far as my meter goes re your biographical details…

      You could be your country`s after-hours internet-hooked doubting Head of Church for all I know 😉

      After some 6 years of blogging on the TS ( yes, with much home-based experimentation on different imprinting techniques) I`m more than happy to take questions from wherever and whomever – whether here or on my own obscure site (which Google currently fails to list under a general search – but let`s not waste any further time in asking why!).

      How many folk out there consider, as I do, that the full-size negative, double (front + rear) image on the TS is a 14th century SIMULATED (read faked) SWEAT/BLOOD IMPRINT. No way is it a painting (regarding which STURP and I at least agree on something.

      It`s nevertheless a work of immense imaginative and technical genius, which explains why it`s the subject of controversy to this very day, despite the radiocarbon dating.

      Like

      1. If it`s informed internet debate you`re interested in, Dale, then here`s an unsolicited word of advice. Steer clear of the inflated egos, preaching their high volume messages, whether pro or (less likely) anti-authenticity. Select a co-debater with a peerless track record of civil, non-point-scoring debate, someone interested only in unearthing the hard facts, aka nitty-gritty.

        You could do a lot worse than select your fellow Toronto resident, namely David Goulet (author of “Looney Tombs” and much else besides.

        looneytombs(at)hotmail.com

        David used to be a regular commentator on Dan Porter`s shroudstory site (still accessible but since closed for further postings these last 3 years).

        Maybe consider opening a debate this side of Christmas? Then asking those otherwise oh-so-aloof super Shroudies to provide feedback to whatever you and your site visitors consider to be the crucial make-or-break issues, their take, as well as mine, David`s – if agreeable- your own and other site visitors.

        I say it`s high time the internet was taken seriously as a medium for addressing the truth on otherwise eternal, allegedly unsolvable `enigmas`

        What say? Start pre- rather than post Christmas with a breaking-in session – your site, not mine (the latter having been conceived mainly as a diary of ongoing hands-on research from Model 1 through to current Model 10).

        Regards

        Colin

        sciencebod01 (at)aol.com

        (Apols for any uncorrected typos – am using someone else`s laptop with unfamiliar keyboard and software).

        Like

  5. Oops. I was so keen to let you know of David`s presence in your own city , Dale, that I overlooked to mention one tiny detail. I have not had time to discuss today`s conversation with him. For all I know, he`s fully booked for the foreseeable future and/or no longer preoccupied with Shroud matters.

    Simply tell him he`s been wholeheartedly recommended by a mutual acquaintance – named or unnamed – and take it from there…

    Regardless of outcome, thanks for taking the suggestion seriously.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. It`s your and your partner`s site, Dale. I`m happy to see a new internet forum take shape, albeit at present in embryonic form, and am happy to participate in whatever way you think best: All i ask is that past differences on the part of old protagonists be put to one side, name-calling and labelling especially – like being described recently as “an avowed skeptic” with its hint of an underlying ideology driving the science.

    Not so! All that concerns me is the real battle between genuine objective science, where one attempts to see the opponent`s standpoint in its best light, and the alternative scenario, best summed up as trench warfare (which frankly bores me to tears, and indeed generally prompts an abrupt departure on my part!).

    There are real urgent issues still waiting to be addressed fairly and squarely, despite 40 years having passed since the appearance of that strangely incomplete STURP Summary. Given the failure of the conventional means of communicating science (reputable journals with all their drawbacks – copyright, paywalls absence of comments/feedback facility etc etc) then it`s surely time the internet stepped in to fill the breach. By that I mean sustained exchange in real time, hopefully with the MSM looking in too, with proper attention given to crucial detail as distinct from shoddy hit-and-run tactics…

    From what I`ve seen of your site thus far (some postings still to be read) you have made a most promising start in providing a replacement for Dan Porter`s lapsed shroudstory site, the positive aspects certainly; Let`s hope you and partner are able to keep the show on track

    It will not be an easy task, believe me. I sincerely wish you both the very best of luck (cautious preparation and planning being taken as read).

    Like

  7. Hi Dale,

    I’m completely new to your site, having just heard about it from Barrie Schwortz’s STERA Facebook page. I don’t want to comment too much before I’ve had a look/listened to more of the Shroud series, but at first glance it seems thorough, sensible and fair. With all the supplementals it’s a bit difficult to follow – I did think that it began with Episode 19 – Shroud Wars, but I find that that episode references Supplemental 13 – Barrie Schwartz, and various other Supplementals also discuss the Shroud. Can you publish a chronology for us latecomers?

    Meanwhile, let me introduce myself. I’m Hugh Farey, long time researcher on the Shroud and recently editor of the newsletter of the British Society for the Turin Shroud. Like Colin Berry I was a frequent contributor to the late shroudstory.com, and am also in sporadic correspondence with almost everybody still involved in primary research, and, like Barrie, a regular participant in the annual convention of the Ahmadiyya Muslims in Hampshire, UK.

    For what it’s worth I am a ‘non-authenticist’, and think that the Shroud was crested for a liturgical function at the beginning of the 14th century. I have written quite an extensive exploration into this, The Medieval Shroud, published at academia.edu. By trade I am a science teacher, and by faith a Roman Catholic, which is usually almost as confusing to students of the Shroud as the idea that the greatest supporter of this most venerable Christian icon is a Jew.

    Recently, there has been a definite trend in authenticist belief among Christians that the Shroud must be miraculous, and thus bears witness to the Resurrection. I think it important to remember that there are also many Christians, not to mention the thousands of authenticists of other faiths, who do not believe in miracles, and have to speculate a credible scientific non-miraculous method of formation, in the tomb of Jesus 2000 years ago.

    As I write this I am listening to Episode 19, and finding it both interesting and entertaining. I look forward to commenting further when I have finished it.

    Best wishes,
    Hugh

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Hugh,

      Yes I am familiar with you, thank you very much for taking an interest in my Shroud series here, I am honoured 🙂

      Firstly, just in case people are interested in Hugh and his work in the Shroud see here = https://www.shroud.com/bstsmain.htm and here is a link to the article on the Medieval Shroud that he mentions freely available online here = https://www.academia.edu/35960624/THE_MEDIEVAL_SHROUD .

      Also in terms of chronology, sorry for it being confusing there, let me help clarify a chronology of my Shroud series thus far (if you scroll down to the bottom search bar and type in “Shroud”, it should pop up all my Shroud Podcasts in reverse chronological order);

      1. Parts# 1-3 deal with my take on the Historical Provenance of the Shroud- I deal with various issues like the 1988 C-14 dating, the Pray Codex, The Sudarium of Oviedo, The Art & Numismatic Arguments, linking the Shroud to Jesus and various arguments against that notion.

      2. Parts #4-5 deal with my listing out the various features discovered by STURP pertaining to the Shroud images that I’m using to judge the success/failure of the various image-forming mechanisms.

      3. Part #6- Is an introduction to my methodology of image-forming mechanism evaluation and the other half is a listener feedback episode.

      4. Parts #7-8- Is my evaluation of the “Painting Hypothesis” as per Walter McCrone.

      5. Parts #9-10- My evaluation of the “Powder-Rubbing & Dusting Hypotheses” as per Joe Nickell, Craig & Bresee and Luigi Garlaschelli.

      6. Supplemental 13- Barrie Schwortz Interview.

      7. Shroud Wars Round 1 (Episode 19 is first half and then Episode 20 is the second half).

      That takes me up to date with everything I’ve completed on the Shroud thus far, as you make your way through the series, some parts I am not as proud of as I think I may have gone a little too far in some places (such as Parts 7-8 on McCrone for example)- I was engaged in a heated exchange with Alan and others on the Unbelievable? Boards trying to defend my research and this sort of spilled over into when I was recording some shows- hopefully you can overlook that and if so, I would love to know your thoughts on the actual substantive issues that I raise and/or any corrections or affirmations you might have 🙂

      Kind regards and welcome to Skeptics & Seekers 😀

      Dale

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    2. Hi Hugh
      When I first agreed to do this debate, I had no idea that Barrie Schwortz, Colin Berry and your good self would would be listening in. No pressure then !
      I think this series is going to be interesting in that it is a two way conversation with different points of view which I think is easier to follow than Dales’s one sided monologue, and gets to the crux of the matter, if you’ll pardon the expression ! To be fair to Dale, he has attempted to reference anti – authenticist view points.
      Cheers
      Alan

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  8. Thanks for your kind remarks. I’d be very happy to take part in a discussion – how does that work with me being in the UK? Alternatively there is a Shroud conference being arranged in Toronto next June, which I’m hoping to attend; I’m a sucker for authenticist incredulity!

    I’ve now listened to Part 1, Episode 19, Episode 20 and Supplemental 13, so I think I’m getting to grips with things, and do have a few comments, although I don’t want to go over ground which has been commented on before and already clarified/explained/retracted or whatever. My speciality, if I had to pick one out, is sources, particularly primary sources, so I’m really pleased that you give lists of them at the end of the blog.

    I note that one of your commenters to Part 1 cheerfully lists your “textbook examples of cognitive bias, motivated reasoning, special pleading, and moving the goal post.” Before you’d even got started! Still, a salutary warning, I feel. For instance at the very beginning of Part 1, you say: “and it is a burial shroud, which is a long garment or a long cloth that is used to bury people, […] so that they are laid lengthwise on the lower part of the cloth, while the rest of the cloth is then folded over the person to cover them […] This is a funeral practise that’s been around from ancient times well before the time of Jesus up until the modern day. It’s still practised throughout the Middle East; many Moslems, for example.”

    Sounds OK? But
    a) you already state that the Shroud is a shroud, which in my opinion it probably isn’t.
    b) you imply (without explicitly stating) that shrouds are quite usually long and thin, rather than more like sheets, which they’re not. They’re usually much wider than, but not much longer than, the body they enclose.
    c) you imply that bodies are usually laid on one side, and the other side folded over, which they’re not. The body is placed in the middle and both sides folded up.
    d) you imply that we know this is how bodies were buried in ancient times, which we don’t. In particular, we have vanishingly few archaeological examples of shrouds from the time, and place, of Jesus.
    e) you imply that modern Middle Eastern people are often buried in shrouds with a similar configuration to the Shroud, which they aren’t. And shrouds are used throughout the entire east, from Turkey to Japan, not just for ‘many Moslems’.

    Evidence? Just Google bodies in shrouds, or funeral shrouds, or Moslem, Jewish, Hindu or Japanese shrouds, and look at the pictures or descriptions.

    Is this at all important? Well yes. One of the best reasons I can think of for the non-authenticity of the Shroud is that it doesn’t look anything like one, and that if such a cloth were ever used as a shroud in that particular configuration, the body would be placed with its head at the end, not in the middle, so that the face would be the last thing to be visible to the mourners. The fact that the two heads of the Shroud images are together in the middle of a long thin cloth is powerful evidence against authenticity.

    How’s that for a start?

    Now on to the second minute of Part 1!
    (Only joking; next comment on the alleged 1982 radiocarbon dating….)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Dale,

      Did I make this assumption? “An unverified assumption in saying that the configuration as seen on the Shroud could not have been used in Jesus’ time” ?

      Certainly not. I’m a scientist and we scientists do not deal in proof, “must have beens” or “could not have beens.” We deal in demonstrations, and conclusions drawn from evidence. What I said was (see above): “One of the best reasons I can think of for the non-authenticity of the Shroud is that it doesn’t look anything like one.” Do you think that the Shroud does look like a shroud? I can provide hundreds of pictures of bodies wrapped in squarish sheets – indeed, if you’ve seen the shrouds your neighbouring Muslims use you can check that for yourself. I can even direct you to websites that sell them, including their dimensions. Can you provide any descriptions or illustrations of long thin shrouds? Any at all? Just one?

      So yes, of course Jesus could have been wrapped in any shape. We weren’t there. But your long preamble implying that long thin Shrouds with bodies placed, head inwards, at one end, were and are common practice, and that therefore it is not unreasonable to assume (on those grounds alone) that the Shroud actually is a shroud, is, I think you will now agree, unfounded.

      The task of trying to find a Biblical Scholar who makes a point of saying that the Shroud could not have belonged to Jesus is probably hopeless. On the whole Biblical Scholars are not particularly interested in the Shroud. On the other hand, I doubt if there are many Biblical Scholars who declare the opposite either – that the Shroud must have, or even was likely to have, belonged to Jesus. However, let’s Google “Biblical scholar” “shroud” “Turin”, and see what turns up.

      From bible.org
      Edersheim, the great biblical scholar and historian, wrote in his monumental work, The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah:
      ” It seems as if the `clean linen cloth’ in which the Body had been wrapped, was now torn into `cloths’ or swathes, into which the Body, limb by limb, was now `bound,’ no doubt, between layers of myrrh and aloes, the Head being wrapped in a napkin (Vol. 2, p. 618).”

      Or what about “The Shroud and the Historical Jesus: Challenging the Disciplinary Divide” by Simon J. Joseph, PhD at shroud.com.
      “So why is the Shroud virtually ignored by historical Jesus scholars? The most obvious explanation for this apparent professional negligence is that most biblical scholars have concluded, no doubt as a result of the 1988 radiocarbon dating test, that the Shroud is a medieval forgery.”
      And…
      ” Today, biblical scholars tend to ignore the Shroud since they are not trained in medicine, anatomy, spectrometry, botany, physics, ancient textiles, forensic pathology, image analysis, or art history. Biblical scholars are trained in ancient and modern research languages, historical criticism, literary criticism, and theology; they are not qualified to evaluate the research of experts in other highly specialized fields. Consequently, they prefer to withhold judgment on matters they cannot adjudicate, especially when there may be risk of professional embarrassment.”
      And…
      “A third and undoubtedly the major reason why biblical scholars are not more engaged in Sindonology, is methodological constraint. Biblical studies, like all scientific fields of study, operates under the presupposition of methodological naturalism. Methodological naturalism assumes the non-existence of any supernatural or paranormal phenomena influencing historical events.”

      A Biblical Scholar who accepts the possibility of a miracle is Raymond E Brown, in Chapter 9 of “Biblical Exegesis and Church Doctrine”, entitled “Appended notes on the Shroud of Turin”. However, he is far from convinced that the Shroud is authentic, and explains in huge detail why.

      Even André Feuillet and John T Robinson, Biblical Scholars who firmly support the authenticity of the Shroud, admit that from their own field of study, the Bible, it is extremely difficult to reconcile the Shroud of Turin with the shroud of Jesus.

      Now here’s the thing. If you recorded Part 1 of this debate again tomorrow, would you still include that passage I quoted:
      “and it is a burial shroud, which is a long garment or a long cloth that is used to bury people, […] so that they are laid lengthwise on the lower part of the cloth, while the rest of the cloth is then folded over the person to cover them […] This is a funeral practise that’s been around from ancient times well before the time of Jesus up until the modern day. It’s still practised throughout the Middle East; many Moslems, for example.”

      Best wishes,
      Hugh

      Like

      1. Hey Hugh,

        Firstly, just to check in, I added an update for you about Barrie being willing to have a discussion with you later on next year- so I let you know the score there in case still interested I can email you closer to the time if you provide me your contact info. If not, then I will just reply to a comment to you on here at some point to let you know.

        Now, back to your Shroud follow up reply;

        1. Hmm, OK so I’m not interested so much in this debate about “proof” being valid in science, not sure if you are saying that because of my discussions below with some of our skeptical listeners or not. I’m interested in how you can rule out the Shroud of Turin as an ancient burial shroud that could have been used in the first-century A.D. (on a balance of probabilities, not absolute proof).

        2. So, that’s why I asked about it and on that front thanks for the sources (though would have been helpful if you gave the direct links for people to click on as well- just a note going forward so everyone can benefit and learn). Actually, for those reading the comments, please see a couple of the sources Hugh mentions here = https://bible.org/article/shroud-turin-and-resurrection-christ (Edersheim from Bible.org) and the The Shroud and the Historical Jesus: Challenging the Disciplinary Divide” by Simon J. Joseph, PhD at shroud.com ARTICLE = https://www.shroud.com/pdfs/sjoseph.pdf & Raymond Brown’s entire book (including Ch. 9 on Shroud of Turin) is here = http://www.secularrights.com/biblicalchurchbrown.pdf .

        As to John A.T. Robinson, I actually quoted him myself in Part 3 in support that the Shroud was authentic.

        Thanks again for the sources, I will go over them and get back to you if any further questions or challenges here 😊

        3. If I had to do Part 1 again, would I repeat that line verbatim in light of your concerns, well perhaps I would be more mindful of what I’m saying and qualify it a bit more, but honestly you are being too nit-picky here, I think. It’s just an introduction to the Shroud, not a substantial point or argument in my series- one that I’ve seen in multiple books and presentations on the Shroud, so it’s not meant to be an argument in my Podcast but just an innocent introductory remark. The property of being a long cloth/garment does apply to the Shroud of Turin, and I believe the Shroud was or at least was used as a burial cloth; furthermore, putting people in burial cloths has been practiced by people from ancient times until today and this includes Muslims in the Middle East. So, hopefully you are content with that much of a concession 😊

        Thanks again and kind regards,

        Dale

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        1. Not a problem – I just thought I’d jump in with a splash!

          And yes, Barrie and I manage to chat quite amicably about the Shroud when we meet, and I’d be very happy to discuss the Shroud with him and you next Summer some time, whenever suits him. Judging by the current discussions, we’d better put aside a whole day for it!

          Interestingly, neither Barrie nor I entertain miraculous arguments for the formation of the image, although not for exactly the same reasons. That way we are on some common ground. The trouble with Jackson’s fall-through miracle, Piczek’s event horizon miracle, Rucker’s neutron miracle and Paolo di Lazzaro’s laser miracle is that they are scientifically unapproachable. They can’t all be right, but there’s no way of testing a miracle. As you suggest (ironically I think!), maybe the Shroud was miraculously made in the 13th century. Maybe the image has miraculously changed over time (to account for all the different descriptions of it), maybe it changes into a banana whenever no-one is looking at it; there’s just no way to explore any of these maybes scientifically, so without denying that miracles might happen, or that the image on the Shroud might be due to one, it’s not an area a scientist can sensibly go to. So I don’t.

          Best wishes,
          Hugh

          Liked by 1 person

          1. “Shroud” is such an ambiguous term, Hugh, given the account in the first 3 synoptic Gospels of Joseph of Arimathea . “Fine linen” was deployed to transport the body to the tomb, with no suggestion it was intended to double as final burial shroud as per Jewish custom.

            The upmarket herringbone weave of the TS surely pays homage to the J of A narrative, rather than what followed at the tomb, the latter only set out in the final Gospel.

            Here’s a transcript of an email I sent Barrie Schwortz in his capacity as President of the Shroud of Turin Education and Research Association back in May this year (and mine as a retired educator/scientist).

            Hello Mr. Barrie M.Schwortz

            Yes, I believe “Shroud” of Turin to be a seriously misleading misnomer, one that has led to much inappropriate theorizing, not to say pseudoscience, regarding events taking place inside a certain 1st century rock tomb.

            Here’s a link to my latest posting, well over 6 years and some 350 internet postings in the making.

            https://shroudofturinwithoutallthehype.wordpress.com/2018/05/02/why-is-my-simulated-sweat-imprint-nowhere-to-be-seen-in-googles-top-150-rankings-under-shroud-of-turin-unlike-those-eye-glazing-announcements-for-shroud-replica-goes-on-display-etc/

            I say the Deposition Linen of Turin was a medieval modelling of a simulated sweat imprint (with identifying blood in all the right places)

            Enjoy.

            Colin Berry (MSc, PhD, retired biomedical scientist)

            Thus far, no direct response! But Barrie Schwortz has at least provided that link to my site in his latest (October) six-monthly STERA Update under tagged-on-end “Internet” section (thanks to some gentle prodding from David Goulet, to whom I give heartfelt thanks for fair-mindedness…).

            Like

            1. Just for those interested in what Colin is talking about here, people can see the Editor’s note to which Colin mention here = https://www.shroud.com/latebrak.htm#internet2 , which says;

              “[Editor’s Note: I received an e-mail from avowed Shroud skeptic Colin Berry on May 30, 2018, which included a link to a compilation web page of his research on the Shroud. Frankly, I did not respond to his e-mail nor did I include the link in our June 21, 2018 website update. Shortly thereafter, I received a comment from and had a written exchange with David Goulet, one of our viewers on our Facebook page. With his permission, I am reprinting it below, since it explains why I was initially hesitant to include the link to Colin’s web page.]

              David Goulet – Robust update! However I would like to recommend that, perhaps at next update, you give a nod to Colin Berry’s website and ongoing experiments that provide a possible man-made narrative for the Shroud. I know Colin is not the most popular Shroud investigator but his research is compelling. His is, imo, the one non-authentic hypothesis that bears serious consideration. If reason is to serve faith, then we must challenge our assumptions and Colin’s site is a place to do that. To ignore the incredible amount of scientific modelling and research he has undertaken would be a disservice to the Shroud.

              STERA, Inc. – I will certainly consider it for our next update. However, Colin didn’t win himself any friends by launching unprovoked ad hominem personal attacks against other researchers (including me) on a regular basis when Dan Porter’s blog was still active. Disagreeing with a researcher’s conclusions or results is how science advances and is perfectly acceptable, but personal attacks, particularly on deceased researchers who are no longer alive to defend themselves, crosses the line. Sadly, Colin crossed that line regularly.

              David Goulet – Acknowledged and I appreciate the reticence given his antagonism. My main concern though is that regardless of Colin’s demeanor his science modelling continues to be compelling and innovative. There may be aspects of his work that may even provide insights for pro-authentic researchers – for those with the patience to sift through his site and deal with his truculence.

              STERA, Inc. – Fair enough. May I quote this exchange? You made a convincing argument and I’d like to publish it with the link.

              David Goulet – Of course. Thx.

              Shroud of Turin Without All the Hype – This is the link to Colin’s web page.”

              Like

              1. OK, Dale, so maybe you thought I’d presented a one-sided account of my attempt to re-establish contact with Barrie Schwortz (via email, as distinct from other folk’s internet forums, notably Dan Porter’s, up until end 2015).

                In fact I was simply attempting to address a pressing issue, namely Barrie Schwortz’s unwillingness to summarise my “simulated sweat imprint” idea on his STERA site, for whatever reason, without re-opening old wounds. (I’ll spare you and this site the history of previous spats between us, except to say I reject entirely his charge – which you decided to publicize here – perhaps with the best of intentions – of making ‘ad hominem’ attacks. I restrict myself to attacking what I consider bad science, not the person from whom it emanates, UNLESS there’s a suspicion that “science” is being used to mischievously promote an unscientific idea – something entirely different).

                Much water has flowed under the bridge since my first encounter with STERA’s President on the comments column of a Dan Porter posting from February 2012. I’ll not supply the link – it’s googleable for those needing forensic detail…

                I still maintain that an email sent to the President of the self-appointed “Shroud of Turin Education and Research Association” under my name and stated credentials as a retired educationist/scientist deserved a private response in the first instance. Then, and only then, if my response has been deemed inadequate, should there have been the open and public denunciation via internet from STERA’s President as someone resorting to ‘ad hominem’ attacks as appeared on his current October Update, the one you have, somewhat disappointingly, chosen to publicise.

                Best maybe I stop here. Suffice it so say that my hopes and expectations of your “Skeptics and Seekers” site has taken a bit of a knock. But even we humanists (I was a Founder Member later Chairman of my University Humanist Group way back in the mid 60s) subscribe to the principle not just of ‘do as you would be done by’ but additionally ‘forgive and forget’! 😉

                Like

                1. Thanks for the accomodating response Dale.

                  All I can say is this: there’s soft science, and there’s hard science. I’m personally an advocate for the latter, no holds barred. If non-scientists (especially) see that as making ‘ad hominem’ attacks, wrongly in my view, than so be it.

                  One cannot allow non-scientists to set the ground rules for science (whether soft or hard) – in the same way that it’s for one’s family doctor to be trusted – or doubted – in determining what is or isn’t wrong with one’s state of health if or when seeking a medical opinion (opinion note, not hard proven fact).

                  It’s for qualified, experienced professional scientists (among whom I include myself!) to set the ground rules for what is science v non-science – NOT amateurs, no matter how gifted or well-informed. They should not be allowed to puff themselves up as “experts” – or be designated as such – when operating outside their own area of expertise.

                  I consider the matter re STERA’s (non-scientist) President now closed, but will respond to personal emails.

                  Like

                  1. Thanks Dale.

                    Just one tiny detail needs addressing. What I’ve proposed (“simulated sweat imprint”) is not so much a theory, or even an hypothesis – more a simple, commonsensical explanation.

                    Why not a hypothesis or theory? Answer: because it’s not cast in terms that are capable of experimental verification – far less proof.

                    But I say it allows one to make sense of a veritable mountain of observations that are otherwise incomprehensible – negative life-size double body image, biblical relevance/irrelevance, C-14 dating, lack of pre-14th century credentials, stylized blood imprints etc.

                    I ‘d like to say “I rest my case”.

                    But there’s no case to rest – merely an otherwise motley collection of seemingly-disjointed observations. They cry out for a simple answer, one rooted less in science, more in human narrowly-directed enterprise, one that plays on susceptibility to a particular religious message deemed beyond challenge or dispute.

                    I strongly suspect that the TS was created mid-13th century as an attempted confirmation of what otherwise was open to scepticism. But the ‘relic’ quickly generated still more scepticism for those (like those two contemporaneous bishops of Troyes) who were correct in suspecting an ingenious doubt-dispelling lucrative medieval ‘fix’. It substituted “prove me wrong” for “prove me right”, a cautionary tale for modern times if ever there was….

                    Even to this day, pro-authenticity advocates attempt to shift the burden of proof onto the skeptics…

                    Sorry, scientists don’t deal with proof. They deal with evidence – supporting or contrary. At the end of the day, it’s the balance between those two that matters, especially when there’s a huge imbalance.

                    Sadly, and annoyingly, STURP scarcely scratched the surface… It’s not so much what STURP said, so much as what it didn’t say (like failing to articulate a simple rationale for the negative tone-reversed image, i.e. produced by CONTACT-IMPRINTING, not by the eye-glazing alternative of mere painting).

                    Like

                2. Just a quick reply to your later comment Dale (no Reply facility on the comment itself). You make reference to Thibault Heimburger MD and his critique of my ideas.

                  Sure, but most of that was directed at my early Model 2 from 2012 (scorching an imprint onto linen from a heated metal template), not my much later 2015 final Model 10 (gentle roasting of a flour imprint from real, fully 3D human anatomy).

                  See the compliments he paid to the current technology shortly before leaving my site (he has never returned with fresh criticism).

                  https://shroudofturinwithoutallthehype.wordpress.com/2016/01/25/modelling-the-shroud-of-turin-with-white-flour-olive-oil-and-a-real-face-in-pictures/#comment-6938

                  David Goulet too was complimentary – while not necessarily agreeing wholeheartedly with the proposition.

                  So why do most of the pro-authenticity websites fail to flag up the new thinking, making no reference whatsoever to “simulated sweat imprint”, even to this day – some 3 years later?

                  Whatever happened to fair play?

                  Like

                  1. Awesome thanks and fair point as I know your explanations continue to evolve over time- the latest one from TH I had was actually from 2014, so it was a little more recent but certainly didn’t reference your Model 10 or Revised Model on that front, even there it seems I myself am out of date lol.

                    But yeah, thanks for the link there, I will check out what he had to say back in 2016 for sure 🙂

                    Like

  9. It’s heartening to see this site gradually gathering momentum, given the void that opened up on internet-based Shroud debate back in Dec 2015 (retirement of Dan Porter’s shroudstory site).

    Sorry I personally could not fill it (being preoccupied with patient gathering of scientific data, model-refinement etc as distinct from public-forum debate).

    Kindly bring back the public-forum debate please, oh Skeptics and Seekers!

    But let’s now move on from dated 15 -40 year old STURP-inspired models please, with never a ‘medievally-faked ‘ scenario in sight – bar the oh-so-humdrum ‘just a painting’ offering….

    It’s time surely to knock revered STURP off its self-erected pedestal (STERA’s mouthpiece Barrie Schwortz please note)!

    Sorry. Someone had to say it…

    Like

  10. Now. The C-14 dating of 1982; Dale’s “Thirteenth reliable dating method”. Here’s the transcript:

    “A couple of threads of this [the Raes sample] were actually radiocarbon dated, giving results at 30AD and 70AD, plus or minus. There’s also a later sample that was an outlier dating to around 200 AD or thereabouts as well. Why didn’t this result make headlines? Why aren’t we seeing that the Shroud was proven to belong to Jesus or to come from the first century? […] The reason for this is because again this radiocarbon-14 result was unreliable. It didn’t follow the proper scientific protocols; there was evident contamination from that area, the same area that the 1988 sample came from. And because of this the scientists were consistent and said. ‘Look we just can’t make a determination based on the results of this test.’ But guess what? Those same problems, as I’ve proved, apply equally to the 1988 samples as well….”

    Oh, goodness me. This is such a distortion of the primary sources as to appear culpably dishonest. Actually I don’t think it is – Dale got his information from Gary Habermas, speaking at the debate referenced: youtube.com/watch?v=m_uQTXYMUqI, and Gary just seems to have muddled various bits of information, which is quite normal (at least for me!) in a live interview. It all goes to emphasise the importance of primary sources, and the dangers of relying on secondary ones.

    So let’s get tracking…

    The origin of this bizarre story seems to be an article by Joe Marino and Sue Benford published at shroud.com in 2002, twenty years after the alleged event (https://www.shroud.com/pdfs/textevid.pdf). In it they state:
    “Unauthorized dating of Raes thread
    In 1982 an unauthorized Carbon-14 dating test was conducted on a single thread from the Raes sample. The experimental thread was provided by Dr. Alan Adler and given to Dr. John Heller. At the time, Adler was unaware that an agreement had been signed by STURP members not to do further testing on Shroud samples. Heller delivered the thread to the California Institute of Technology (CalTech) for dating by world- renowned mineralogist Dr. George R. Rossman. Adler informed Rossman that one end of the thread contained, what appeared to be, a “starch contaminate.” Thus, Rossman cut the thread in half and, using what Adler described as Fourier-transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry (FTMS), dated each end of the thread separately. […] Rossman found that the non-contaminated end of the thread dated to 200 AD while the starched end dated to 1200 AD. Although Rossman did not publish these data, Adler had confidence in his capabilities to accurately measure the age of the sample. Adler stated that Rossman is the “world’s expert in it and there’s no arguing with him … .if he says these are the dates he got . . .” In a personal conversation with one of the authors (Benford), Rossman confirmed that he was, indeed, the person who carried out the 1982 C-14 testing on the Raes thread provided by Adler.”

    The sources for this information were said to be an audiotaped interview with Alan Adler, and a personal communication from George Rossman. Neither of these have been published. However, what has been published is a comment by Caltech (shroud.com/late02.htm):
    “The truth is that Dr. Rossman has never worked on the Shroud of Turin (or threads from it), nor have members of his research group. He has never been involved in age-dating studies and has no expertise in the area. Furthermore, the Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences has never had FTMS instruments. In fact, to my knowledge no one at Caltech has ever done 14-C age-dating work at the Institute. The interview alleged to have occurred between Dr. Rossman and the author of one of the articles, in fact, never happened.”

    And in a “personal communication” (an email) to me personally, George Rossman said:
    “Every statement about my testing the shroud is total fabrication. It did not happen.
    I have no idea how or why they chose my name, but it was either a gross mistake on their part or a deliberate lie.”

    So where does this get us? Jason Engwer has conducted some fairly exhaustive research on this, at triablogue.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-1982-carbon-dating-of-shroud-of.html. He finds some comments by Alan Adler, who allegedly set up the test:
    “You should know that the test was not performed under rigorous conditions; the dates were not corrected by the dendrochronological curve; we do not even know which end – the starched end or the other end – gave the earlier date; the experimenter was not experienced in C14 testing. The results of that 1982 test should be thrown out.”
    This is from Thomas Case’s book, “The Shroud Of Turin And The C-14 Dating Fiasco, which contains an extensive account of an interview with Heller and Adler.

    In their examination of the X-ray photographs of the Shroud taken in 1988, (at shroud.com/pdfs/whanger.pdf) Alan and Mary Whanger draw attention to a couple of dark lines, one warp-ways and one weft-ways, in the ‘radiocarbon corner’. Neither of them are part of the Raes sample (which of course, wasn’t there at all in 1988). They say:
    “A very interesting finding is that a single weft thread has been extracted at about the midway level of where the Raes sample was removed, beginning about 1 cm medial to the rolled seam that reattached the Shroud to the backing cloth. The space of the missing thread appears to be about 8 cm in length. We do not know the history of this particular thread, but Dr. Alan Adler had a thread about 8 cm in length that came from the Shroud that he acquired in the early 1980s from an unidentified source. He detected what he referred to as starch on one end of this thread. He then had a very unofficial and admittedly inadequate radiocarbon dating done on each end of this thread in 1983. Reportedly, the starched end tested about AD 1000 and the other end of the same thread tested about AD 200.”

    One must wonder from whom Alan Adler obtained his 8 cm length of Shroud thread, given that STuRP did not remove any threads at all.

    In his book, The Rape of the Turin Shroud, William Meacham says:
    “[John] Heller took me back to the train station that evening [in 1984], and as we sat waiting for my train back to New York City, he told me in strictest confidence about a secret C-14 run that had already been made on a thread from the Shroud. He said it had been done by the Livermore Laboratory in California, and the thread was cut into two segments. One end dated ca. 200 A.D., and the other ca. 1000 A.D. He also said that starch had been identified on the thread. He did not know what margin of error there was on the dates, and thought it would be quite wide, as the test was only intended to give a rough idea of what an eventual C-14 date would look like. As it turned out, it gave conflicting indications. (This test in California was later confirmed to me by [Alan] Adler, who said that he was in fact the one who had arranged it, despite C-14 dating being specifically forbidden in STURP’s agreement with the Turin Archdiocese.)” (quoted in the triablogue.blog referenced above.

    With these in mind, let’s go back to the passage from Part 1 quoted at the top of this post, with my comments square brackets:
    “”A couple of threads of this [the Raes sample] …
    [No. A single thread, and not from the Raes sample]
    … were actually radiocarbon dated, giving results at 30AD and 70AD, plus or minus.
    [No. One end 200AD and the other 1000AD]
    There’s also a later sample that was an outlier dating to around 200 AD or thereabouts as well.
    [No, there isn’t]
    Why didn’t this result make headlines? Why aren’t we seeing that the Shroud was proven to belong to Jesus or to come from the first century? […] The reason for this is because again this radiocarbon-14 result was unreliable.
    [No. It was the because the Church authorities had specifically refused permission for C-14 testing, and that it had not dated to the first century]
    It didn’t follow the proper scientific protocols; there was evident contamination from that area, the same area that the 1988 sample came from. And because of this the scientists were consistent and said. ‘Look we just can’t make a determination based on the results of this test.’
    [No, “they” didn’t. They didn’t say anything at all, until several years after the 1988 result, and even then, since their result was so discrepant, did not make anything public.]
    But guess what? Those same problems, as I’ve proved, apply equally to the 1988 samples as well….”
    [No. The 1982 test was
    a) secret
    b) unauthorised
    c) on a completely unprovananced piece of thread
    d) carried out by means of a wholly untested experimental method
    e) on a fragment of cloth some five times smaller than the minimum specified six years later.]

    Still happy with the comment “thirteenth reliable result”?

    Best wishes,
    Hugh

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I just want to say how much I appreciate you shedding some light on this issue and including links not just for my audience but for me as well.

      The only one thing I would say that I think you are nit-picking a bit is the fact that I said “13th reliable result”- if you notice I actually caught myself and corrected that in the Podcast itself.

      But apart from that one complaint, I love everything else about your thorough critique on here on the issue of the alleged first-century C-14 results and I will say this (hopefully appreciated), I stand completely refuted on this front and based on my quick scan of the sources Hugh provides here, [with links, much appreciated :)], I agree with Hugh’s take here. I appreciate the critique on the substantial issue.

      One thing, you will notice many little mistakes or contradictions that I make in the series (for example I called her Mary Flury-Lemberg as I was looking at something from Mary Whanger on my screen while recording, or I say there are no proteins detected in the blood in Part 8 and then 10 mins later say there is proteins there), I at first tried to correct the major goofs by leaving comments correcting these type of innocent slips when talking rather writing. I stopped making such corrections because the essential points I think are correct and any minor errors, omissions or contradictions can be rectified by anyone reading the sources I provide.

      Nonetheless, I welcome you noticing them and bringing them to people’s attention to them, but just be aware that I know of some of these already and just let it slide as no matter how much I try, I’m not a good speaker vs. writer and when I speak I tend to always say something wrong or not the way I intended but the sources are there for people to discover the truth of what I’m saying. Hope that makes sense, as I never want people to think that I have ever knowingly presented false information or deceptively lied to them- I can’t think of any worse violation of my responsibility as a Christian apologist in sharing the Gospel of Christ or the evidence from the Shroud, so I promise you I am doing my absolute best here in my Shroud series to be as honest as I can in presenting the evidence 🙂

      Kind regards,

      Dale

      Like

  11. Thanks Dale. I personally will be keeping a low profile, at least until the New Year. – for reasons already alluded to. (Namely, no feedback worth speaking of on “simulated sweat imprint/flour imprinting” these last 3 years or so, either positive or, amazingly, negative either!)

    Don’t be offended if further comments in 2018 here seem ignored. They won’t be – but simply read and mentally noted…

    Merry Christmas one and all.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Merry Christmas Colin 🙂

      Like

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