Author Topic: Biblical Archeology?  (Read 324 times)

Offline Baruch

Biblical Archeology?
« on: February 18, 2019, 06:21:11 AM »
Here is an old story retold ... from the 1980s, not the Stone Age.

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Paradise was what was true at the end of the last Ice Age, as it transitioned to the Holocene.  Water, water everywhere.  Climate has oscillated since then.

Notice the ending, the message, by an atheist, is accepted in the Churches of the Bible Belt.  Biblical Archeology is all about confirmation bias, it is romantic, not rational.
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Offline drunkenshoe

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2019, 10:06:27 AM »
Biblical Archeology is an oxymoron,lol.

Offline Baruch

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #2 on: February 18, 2019, 11:18:36 AM »
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Biblical Archeology is an oxymoron,lol.

Correct ... except that do we only accept methodology/arguments that match our confirmation bias?

But archeology does show that the world is older than 7000 years.  And that there was no Exodus.  But in anthropology, the belief systems then and now, are real, no matter how irrational they may seem.  Again, for me, the proper frame for all of this is psychology.  People believe in golden ages, why?  A golden age in the future aka progress.  A golden age in the past aka degeneration.  Neither are historically true, they are simply a statement of the individual and social psychology of whoever we are talking about ... about optimism vs pessimism.
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Offline drunkenshoe

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2019, 11:32:20 AM »
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Correct ... except that do we only accept methodology/arguments that match our confirmation bias?

No. Archeology is based on evidence.

Anthropology does not deal with what is real or not. It deals with development of human culture. It doesn't take belief systems as 'something real'. On the contrary, it operates under the principle that human cultures have to create narratives to survive which I believe what you define as 'psychology' here, but it is a discipline, not science. The how irratonal doesn't matter part is the result of the principle.


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People believe in golden ages, why?  A golden age in the future aka progress.  A golden age in the past aka degeneration.  Neither are historically true, they are simply a statement of the individual and social psychology of whoever we are talking about.

Depends on their identity. Who is missing which golden age? While for an old white male, 50s could look like a golden age to live, for an old black man, it would suck. :)

Offline Baruch

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #4 on: February 18, 2019, 12:54:25 PM »
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No. Archeology is based on evidence.

Anthropology does not deal with what is real or not. It deals with development of human culture. It doesn't take belief systems as 'something real'. On the contrary, it operates under the principle that human cultures have to create narratives to survive which I believe what you define as 'psychology' here, but it is a discipline, not science. The how irratonal doesn't matter part is the result of the principle.


Depends on their identity. Who is missing which golden age? While for an old white male, 50s could look like a golden age to live, for an old black man, it would suck. :)

Archeology requires interpretation.  And generally just comparative pot fragments ;-)  It is up to creative imagination, to decide what those pot shards mean.  The "house of david" inscription at Tell Dan for example.  Is that what it actually says?  And how are we to interpret it?  I can think of several myself.  I don't think there is a historical King David for example.  "David" means "beloved".  So is that "house of David" or "house of the beloved"?  Could be an advertisement for a house of prostitution ;-) ... well maybe that is what a royal harem is anyway ;-))

And yes, it does depend, individually, on whose ox is being gored.  The Torah says as much ;-)  There are no golden ages, no messiahs.  The positing of such things is romance, not science.  Might as well believe in King Arthur.  It was King David who was the original "once and future king".
« Last Edit: February 18, 2019, 12:56:22 PM by Baruch »
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Online Hydra009

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #5 on: February 18, 2019, 04:04:35 PM »
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Archeology requires interpretation.  And generally just comparative pot fragments ;-)  It is up to creative imagination, to decide what those pot shards mean.
A recurring theme for you is that history is a sort of fiction where people just take fragments of facts (and fragments of clay) and construct stories around them that merely reflect historians' biases and agendas, not whatever happened.

And while it's possible that you might be 10% right about that (and hence the recipient of sporadic applause), you inexplicably seem to utterly discount the idea that history in the broad strokes is both knowable and known.

In your worldview, I wonder if such a thing as truth really even exists.  I suppose that if it did, it would be awfully inconvenient, so your stance seems suspiciously fortuitous.

Offline Baruch

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2019, 06:04:51 PM »
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A recurring theme for you is that history is a sort of fiction where people just take fragments of facts (and fragments of clay) and construct stories around them that merely reflect historians' biases and agendas, not whatever happened.

And while it's possible that you might be 10% right about that (and hence the recipient of sporadic applause), you inexplicably seem to utterly discount the idea that history in the broad strokes is both knowable and known.

In your worldview, I wonder if such a thing as truth really even exists.  I suppose that if it did, it would be awfully inconvenient, so your stance seems suspiciously fortuitous.

Eyewitnesses are frequently fooled (see any study of lineups by police) ... sometimes they fool themselves, sometimes they work from inadequate information, and sometimes they deliberately lie.  Unless you can cross examine someone under proper pressure/interrogation, you really don't know anything interesting.  For example, today the authorities can tell when you used your cell phone, who you called, and where you called from.  But how do you interpret that?

Truth?  As in Plato's Forms?  Maybe for Euclidean triangles.  But otherwise in the human scheme of things, it is just individual psychology and the madness of crowds.  Does Trump actually work for Putin?  I have no way of knowing.  Neither do millions of people who think they know.  We only knew the "truth" of WW II after "Ultra" was revealed, or do we?  Anything interesting to governments, is complete propaganda.  And the best kind is partly true, the rest being "plausible".

Human beings in regard to history, don't know.  The primary lie is what you don't include, not what is deliberately falsified.  You don't even know if you were there what happens, ask any spouse betrayed behind their backs.  Was the 1787 Constitutional Convention a wise bit of statecraft, or a bloodless coup?  Interrogate the known traitors, Washington or Franklin if you can get them on the phone.

Now as far as clay pots go ... in the case of the Thebes tomb builders, they put their notes on those pot fragments.  But that is pretty unusual.  Most writing ever made, has been lost.  We have a tiny fraction of what was written at any given time.  Even with the Roman Republic, almost all we know, that is not propaganda, are the personal letters to Cicero.  Official compositions like Caesar's writings, are bent.

I love history and biography ... as I do novels.  History was invented, as an art form ... first as government propaganda (as in Rameses II "victory" at Kadesh) and for the Greeks it was invented by the people who invented drama.  The most "objective" of ancient historians, Thucydides, has been shown by more modern and less gullible "historians" to have been bent in certain ways.  But his basic narrative ... we have no way of an independent check on it.

So yes, things do happen.  Each happening has many perspectives by the people involved, whose own view changes over time.  But that isn't some kind of "objectivity" other than saying "so-and-so" said/wrote something-something at some point in time (if you can even determine that much).  We don't even "know" if they believed what they said/wrote at that time.  That is as good as we can get with Cicero's candid letters (we have both incoming and outgoing letters).
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Online Hydra009

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2019, 06:18:20 PM »
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Truth?  As in Plato's Forms?
Truth as in reliable facts, like the Titanic sunk or Hitler shot himself.

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Interrogate the known traitors, Washington or Franklin if you can get them on the phone.
Now you're deliberately trying to provoke a reaction.  Tisk tisk.

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Most writing ever made, has been lost.  We have a tiny fraction of what was written at any given time.
You don't say.

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Even with the Roman Republic, almost all we know, that is not propaganda, are the personal letters to Cicero.
If only they had You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login of their own.  Or historians hailing from other countries.

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I love history and biography ... as I do novels.  History was invented, as an art form ... first as government propaganda (as in Rameses II "victory" at Kadesh) and for the Greeks it was invented by the people who invented drama.
It's stuff like this that gives me my impression that you regard history as a collective fiction.

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So yes, things do happen.
Finally, something we can agree on, meagre as it is.

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We don't even "know" if they believed what they said/wrote at that time.
Eh, I'm pretty sure Thomas Jefferson was kinda peeved at the British.  You don't write a Declaration of Independence as a jest.

Offline Baruch

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2019, 06:33:13 PM »
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Truth as in reliable facts, like the Titanic sunk or Hitler shot himself.
Now you're deliberately trying to provoke a reaction.  Tisk tisk.
You don't say.
If only they had You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login of their own.  Or historians hailing from other countries.
It's stuff like this that gives me my impression that you regard history as a collective fiction.
Finally, something we can agree on, meagre as it is.
Eh, I'm pretty sure Thomas Jefferson was kinda peeved at the British.  You don't write a Declaration of Independence as a jest.

No, I am not.  I am giving you my best educated skepticism.

How about New England Patriots won this years Super Bowl.  But did they cheat or not?  Was the ref's calls good or not?

The Titanic went down, except it wasn't the original Titanic, it was originally the Britannic .. and they had to switch identities of the sister ships because the Titanic wasn't ready in time.  There were all sorts of defects in the hull and other design features (as shown by recovery of pieces) ... but the purpose of the inquest to was to exonerate Cunard from liability.  Is any of what I just wrote correct or not?

Hitler may or may not have died in the Bunker.  We don't know.  The Vatican would have assisted his escape to Argentina.  Stalin was really concerned that it was a body double (like Saddam and others have used).  The piece of skull in the museum, supposedly Hitler, turns out to be female.  Eva Braun perhaps?  Inquiring minds want to know ;-)  Supposedly the Soviets buried most of the remains, in an unmarked grave under a garage in Magdeburg, or did they?  But nobody is going to exhume it.

Read a book on WW I, that tries to correct the war time propaganda from Britain/France/Germany and special pleading by generals after the war.  A lot of what we "know" about the Eastern Front in WW II, is German/Soviet propaganda during and after the war.  Just like in Vietnam, the casualty figures are falsified.

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Patrick Henry, arguing 5 June 1788 at the Virginia Ratification Debates against Virginia's joining the new Union.

The honorable gentleman who presides told us that, to prevent abuses in our government, we will assemble in Convention, recall our delegated powers, and punish our servants for abusing the trust reposed in them. O sir, we should have fine times, indeed, if, to punish tyrants, it were only sufficient to assemble the people! Your arms, wherewith you could defend yourselves, are gone; and you have no longer an aristocratical, no longer a democratical spirit. Did you ever read of any revolution in a nation, brought about by the punishment of those in power, inflicted by those who had no power at all? You read of a riot act in a country which is called one of the freest in the world, where a few neighbors cannot assemble without the risk of being shot by a hired soldiery, the engines of despotism. We may see such an act in America.

A standing army we shall have, also, to execute the execrable commands of tyranny; and how are you to punish them? Will you order them to be punished? Who shall obey these orders? Will your mace-bearer be a match for a disciplined regiment? In what situation are we to be? The clause before you gives a power of direct taxation, unbounded and unlimited, exclusive power of legislation, in all cases whatsoever, for ten miles square, and over all places purchased for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, dockyards, &c. What resistance could be made? The attempt would be madness. You will find all the strength of this country in the hands of your enemies; their garrisons will naturally be the strongest places in the country. Your militia is given up to Congress, also, in another part of this plan: they will therefore act as they think proper: all power will be in their own possession. You cannot force them to receive their punishment: of what service would militia be to you, when, most probably, you will not have a single musket in the state? for, as arms are to be provided by Congress, they may or may not furnish them.

Let me here call your attention to that part which gives the Congress power "to provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining the militia, and for governing such part of them as may be employed in the service of the United States β€” reserving to the states, respectively, the appointment of the officers, and the authority of training the militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress." By this, sir, you see that their control over our last and best defence is unlimited. If they neglect or refuse to discipline or arm our militia, they will be useless: the states can do neither β€” this power being exclusively given to Congress. The power of appointing officers over men not disciplined or armed is ridiculous; so that this pretended little remains of power left to the states may, at the pleasure of Congress, be rendered nugatory. Our situation will be deplorable indeed: nor can we ever expect to get this government amended, since I have already shown that a very small minority may prevent it, and that small minority interested in the continuance of the oppression. Will the oppressor let go the oppressed? Was there ever an instance? Can the annals of mankind exhibit one single example where rulers overcharged with power willingly let go the oppressed, though solicited and requested most earnestly?

Is Patrick Henry reliable?  He was a known traitor.  This was the whole "states rights" issue from 1788, not 1861.  Declaration of Independence was jointly written by Jefferson, Adams and Franklin.  For a specific political purpose.  Later people tried to elevate it above the Constitution.  Reading it today, it pretty much invalidates the government we have now in Washington DC.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2019, 06:43:04 PM by Baruch »
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2019, 11:37:15 AM »
William Dever is pushing the term Syro-Palestinian archaeology as a replacement for the 19th century concept of biblical archaeology.

An even newer term is turning out to be Levantine Archaeology.
The Christian church, in its attitude toward science, shows the mind of a more or less enlightened man of the Thirteenth Century. It no longer believes that the earth is flat, but it is still convinced that prayer can cure after medicine fails.

-- H. L. Mencken

Offline Cavebear

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2019, 06:20:18 PM »
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Biblical Archeology is an oxymoron,lol.

You just improved my opinion of you by 50%...
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead!

Offline Cavebear

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2019, 06:22:53 PM »
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No. Archeology is based on evidence.

Anthropology does not deal with what is real or not. It deals with development of human culture. It doesn't take belief systems as 'something real'. On the contrary, it operates under the principle that human cultures have to create narratives to survive which I believe what you define as 'psychology' here, but it is a discipline, not science. The how irratonal doesn't matter part is the result of the principle.


Depends on their identity. Who is missing which golden age? While for an old white male, 50s could look like a golden age to live, for an old black man, it would suck. :)

Another 25%...
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead!

Offline Baruch

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2019, 06:26:57 PM »
Archeology isn't bad, as long as confined to broken pots and stratigraphy.  It is the romantic interpretation of those dumps that gets dicey.
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Offline Cavebear

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #13 on: February 22, 2019, 06:30:05 PM »
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William Dever is pushing the term Syro-Palestinian archaeology as a replacement for the 19th century concept of biblical archaeology.

An even newer term is turning out to be Levantine Archaeology.

The easiest way to tell, is that theists dedicated to proving their after-written religious texts will always mention them eventually.  You just have to keep asking them questions. And I love that "AHA" moment when they are caught and  they realize it.
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead!

Offline Cavebear

Re: Biblical Archeology?
« Reply #14 on: February 22, 2019, 06:37:13 PM »
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Archeology isn't bad, as long as confined to broken pots and stratigraphy.  It is the romantic interpretation of those dumps that gets dicey.

No, actually, it when they try to fit the site to their theology.  I saw a religious show once where they decided where Soddom might have been, found a cave nearby, and said "see we told you Lot and his daughters stayed in a cave, here is the cave, so that MUST be Soddom over there and therefore this must by the cave, QED".   
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead!

 

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