"NOTHING IS SO FIRMLY BELIEVED AS WHAT IS LEAST KNOWN, NOR ARE ANY PEOPLE SO CONFIDENT AS THOSE WHO TELL US FABLES...." [compare: belief in God, Jesus, Resurrection, Hell, Heaven, etc.] (Michel Eyquem de Montaigne 1533 - 1592 [Essays: I:32 (Frame, 1966 (1958), 160)]) [See: 2818-2819].
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from: Article #23, 480 (Robert Taylor 1784 - 1844):
"IT IS THOSE ALONE WHO LOVE KNOWLEDGE, WHO FOLLOW REASON AS THE SUPREME GUIDE, AND SEEK TRUTH AS THE GREAT END, TO WHOM I APPEAL."
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from: Addition 27, 1261 (Gibbon 1737 - 1794): "The various modes of worship which prevailed in the ancient world were all considered by the people as equally true; by the philosopher as equally false; and by the magistrates as equally useful."
[See: Article #2, 23, 142.].
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[8/7/2004] See: http://www.infidels.org/library/historical/m_d_aletheia/rationalists_manual.html, The Rationalist's Manual, M.D. Aletheia, London: Watts, 1897. [search text for "Christianism"].
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'Christianism [reference to www.Christianism.com]
Years of incisive and compelling 'free thought' research summarized at a vast web-site that 'contains scholarship, blasphemy, heresy, freethought, rationalism, atheism, history, psychology, sociology, theology, anthropology, etc." Useful for serious research and indepth debate of Christianism's effects on the sociocultural trajectory of Humanity.'
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"[reference to www.Christianism.com] Over 2700 pages of scholarly examination of the origin of Christianity. Conclusion: IT'S A WORK OF FICTION."
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"NATIONAL PUBLIC RADIO...
February 9, 2005
COMMENTARY: CHOICES OF MAX SCHMELING [Maximillian Adolph Otto Siegfried Schmeling, September 28, 1905 - February 2, 2005]...
RENEE MONTAGNE, host:
One of the most interesting figures in boxing history was a German who was associated with the Third Reich but who was not a member of the Nazi party. Commentator Frank Deford offers these thoughts.
I suspect all of us wonder how we would act under extreme circumstance: How would I respond in combat when the bullets flew? Would I run into the burning building to save the baby? And what would I have done had I lived in Germany, as Max Schmeling did when the Nazis came to power? Schmeling, the first European heavyweight champion, the first man to beat Joe Louis, died the other day just months shy of his 100th birthday, but I don't think the old man ever stopped wondering about how he dealt with Hitler and his wicked minions back when Schmeling was young and strong and handsome and smart and the idol of a nation.
After the war, so many Germans pleaded ignorance to what had gone before. S! chmeling [Schmeling] owned up. 'In truth, we all knew,' he wrote. 'It was no secret that there were camps in Germany. It was openly discussed.' Schmeling wasn't just a pug. He was self-taught, cosmopolitan, a conspicuous part of the avant-garde Berlin nightlife. He married a gorgeous movie star, Anny Ondra. Many Jews were his friends until, of course, they began to disappear one by one.
Schmeling convinced himself that as the Nazis used him, he could use his fame and popularity for good against them. Maybe that was his only choice, to play that risky symbiotic role, but could Schmeling, Germany's champion, have done more? Would Hitler have dared to take out the fatherland's dearest athlete? Anyway, Schmeling would not become a Nazi. To the horror of many friends, he even baldly turned down the distinguished dagger of honor(ph) that Hitler offered him. Schmeling would not give up his American-Jewish manager, Joe Jacobs, on Kristallnacht. As Nazi thugs ran wild, Schmeling! hid two Jewish boys in his apartment. That was at the very peril to his life.
After the war, Schmeling became a wealthy businessman and philanthropist. He sought out Joe Louis [1914 - 1981] to be his friend. He often sent money to the indigent old champ. Everybody who met Schmeling liked him. Alas, he had to live out the last 18 years of his life alone, a widower on his estate near Hamburg. He was buried next to Anny, his wife of 52 years, but he thought that that was as close as he would ever get to her again. Schmeling had no faith in the afterlife. 'To me,' he told his closest friend, 'religion means to give, to do good [reminiscent of Thomas Paine (see Appendix II, 710)]. We live on solely as someone who is being remembered, someone who is talked about.'
It must have mattered so very much to Schmeling that he be forever celebrated not as a boxer but for his charity and for the hope that he did do the best he could when he was so very long ago a hero living amidst devils. Surely[?] he must have heard Edmund Burke's [1729 - 1797] famous admonition that the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil ! is for good men to do nothing, and we can say this. Max Schmeling was a good man, and how many of us would have been better?
[RENEE] MONTAGNE: The comments of Frank Deford, senior contributing writer at Sport [Sports] Illustrated. He joins us each Wednesday from member station WSHU in Fairfield, Connecticut.
You're listening to MORNING EDITION from NPR News." [transcript].
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from: The San Diego Union-Tribune/WORLD/Thursday, December 30, 2004
'ISRAEL INDICTS 4 IN FORGERY RING INVOLVING COUNTERFEIT ARTIFACTS
by Karin Laub
JERUSALEM—Four Israeli antiquities collectors and dealers were indicted yesterday on charges they ran a sophisticated forgery ring that spanned the globe and produced a treasure trove of fake Bible-era artifacts, including some that were hailed as major archaeological finds.
Police said the ring forged what were presented as perhaps the two biggest biblical discoveries in the Holy Land in recent years—the purported burial box of Jesus' brother James and a stone tablet with written instructions by King Yoash on maintenance work at the ancient Jewish Temple.
Shuka Dorfman, head of the Israel Antiquities Authority, said the scope of the fraud appears to go far beyond what has been uncovered so far.
"We discovered only the tip of the iceberg. This spans the globe. It generated millions of dollars," Dorfman said. The forgers "were trying to change history."
Investigators warned that collectors and museums around the world could be in the possession of fakes, and scholars urged museums to re-examine items of
suspicious origin. The forgery ring has been operating for more than 20 years, Dorfman said.
SCHOLARS SAID THE FORGERS WERE EXPLOITING THE DEEP EMOTIONAL NEED OF JEWS AND CHRISTIANS TO FIND PHYSICAL EVIDENCE TO REINFORCE THEIR BELIEFS.
The indictments were announced at a joint news conference of the Antiquities Authority and the police, capping a two-year probe.
The forgers would often use authentic but relatively mundane artifacts, such as a plain burial box, decanter or shard, and boost their value enormously by adding inscriptions, Dorfman said. Then they would try to recreate patina, or ancient grime, to cover the carvings, the indictment said.
The four men indicted were Tel Aviv collector Oded Golan, owner of the James ossuary and the Yoash tablet; Robert Deutsch, an inscriptions expert who teaches at Haifa University; collector Shlomo Cohen; and antiquities dealer Faiz al-Amaleh. The four are free on bail, police said.
Golan said in a statement yesterday that "there is not one grain of truth in the fantastic allegations related to me." He said the investigation was aimed at "destroying collecting and trade in antiquities in Israel."
Deutsch dismissed the indictment as "ridiculous."
The probe began after the Yoash tablet was offered for sale to the Israel Museum for $4.5 million two years ago.
Uzi Dahari, a top official in the Israel Antiquities Authority, said in a recent lecture that some of the forgeries were done by an Egyptian artisan who has worked in Israel for the past 15 years. The Egyptian went out drinking in a Tel Aviv pub from time to time and would brag about his exploits. Some pub-goers alerted the police, Dahari said.' [A10].
[See: Addition 36, 1766 (10,576 spurious Latin inscriptions)].
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from: The Origin of Satan, Elaine Pagels, Vintage, Pb, 1996 (c1995).
"In the Old Testament he [Satan] is merely the Adversary, a forbidding member of God's retinue. How then did Satan become the Gospel's prince of darkness, who brings about the crucifixion of Jesus as part of a cosmic struggle between good and evil? And why did Jesus' followers increasingly identify Satan with their human antagonists—first Jews, then pagans, and then heretics of their own faith?"
'Philosophically inclined Christians such as Augustine of Hippo [354 - 430] have often disparaged such mythological language ["evil and Satan"] and declared that, ontologically ["relating to essence", etc. (dictionary.com)] speaking, evil and Satan do not exist. On this level, orthodox Christianity does not diverge from monotheism. Yet Augustine himself, like many other philosophically sophisticated preachers, often speaks of Satan in sermons and prayers and acknowledges, when he is dealing with people confronted with obstacles, that Christians in this world still struggle against evil in ways that they experience as demonic attack.
So compelling is this vision of cosmic war that it has pervaded the imagination of millions of people for two thousand years. Christians from Roman times through the Crusades, from the Protestant Reformation through the present, have invoked it to interpret opposition and persecution in myriad contexts. To this day, many Christians—Roman Catholic, Protestant, Evangelical, and Orthodox—invoke the figure of Satan against "pagans" (among whom they may include those involved with non-Christian religions throughout the world) and against "heretics" (that is, against other Christians with whom they disagree), as well as against atheists and unbelievers. Millions of Muslims invoke similar apocalyptic visions and switch the sides, so that those who Christians believe are God's people become, for many Muslims, allies of "the great Satan."
Many religious people who no longer believe in Satan, along with countless others who do not identify with any religious tradition, nevertheless are influenced by this cultural legacy whenever they perceive social and political conflict in terms of the forces of good contending against the forces of evil in the world.' .
[Note: as has been stated: NO SATAN—NO GOD!].
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