Quite an entertaining tale from the Manchester Faith & Culture Examiner. She relates a tale about how a cracker and wine at a remote Italian church nearly 40 years ago actually turned into flesh and blood (I guess all you other Catholics who went to mass for years never seeing such a thing just weren’t worthy of your god’s true magical goodness) and then offers this challenge:

Here’s the Atheist’s challenge. Disprove the science involving Eucharistic Miracles.

Here’s the challenge for the ignorant: learn about burden of proof.

Let me explain to you how burden of proof works. When someone makes a claim, it’s their responsibility to give reasons for why someone should accept the claim. That’s the burden of proof, and it’s the burden of the claimant, not the one presented with the claim to prove it false. In other words, proving a miracle claim is the Christian’s cross to bear. ;)

Ever notice how these stories take place either many decades ago, in remote areas, or both? Curious too how we never hear of aliens abducting people from Times Square, but rather from remote Nebraska farms. Why is that? Hmmmm….

Atheist Spot Bookmark and Share

43 Responses to “Will Christians ever comprehend ‘burden of proof’?”

  1. ….and then the Priest just made up the crazy story to cover his ass for serving bloodied wine. Remember, this is Italy where that kind of bullshit can happen after all.

  2. I lol’d :D DD hahaha.

  3. Frankly, this particular miracle strikes me as pretty gross. Jesus-on-a-pancake isn’t nearly so bad, until one pours on the syrup.

    I’ll be interested to see how the comment thread develops. I noticed that it must be set to some ridiculously low character limit, as a couple of commenters (including you) have had to continue in a second comment.

  4. There’s a ton of problems with Examiner.com, including character limits and the lack of any notification of new responses.

    Btw, a group of 200 people 50 years ago in Borneo witnessed a miracle. Aliens appeared and revealed to them that there was no god using a yam and the intestines of a lizard. Scientists tested the yam and the intestines and found them to be an actual yam and lizard intestines; therefore there is no god.

    Have a nice day

  5. here’s my response to this: EWWWW!

    the whole eucharist thing freaked me out as a kid, and still freaks me out now.

    although, if you’ve ever read the Endymion series, the author gives a fascinating explanation for the eucharist: that Jesus was infected with a virus that causes forced, immediate evolution, a virus that he really wanted to share with us all.

    that makes more sense than the actual story.

  6. To answer your last question; basic alien shyness and love of pastoral settings.

  7. I’m agreeing with Postman!

    Aliens suffer from social anxiety which makes abductions in crowded places a no go.

  8. Well, for starters, there’s no DNA evidence now is there, but if there was blood in the wine I’ll bet it was much more likely to be Pedro cutting his bair feet on a rusty nail while grape stomping.

  9. Well if there’s anymore of this miracle flesh and blood around at the church, it opens up some interesting thoughts in terms of science. For instance, the dna could be scanned for genetic markers to determine ethnicity, and then there’s the fun stuff like cloning.

    How ironic if the “second coming” was brought about by science via cloning. Where’s Dan Brown? I want to pitch a story.

    Of course how much would it suck if you’re the clone and you’re nothing but an average Pedro? Talk about being born with high expectations that you can’t live up to! LOL!

  10. I’m still open to the evidence that Jesus actually lived at all. But since the Christians have “burden of proof” ass-backwards, lets play along!

    Jesus was actually kind of a Jewish hippy who was smoking opium with his buddies, Johnny, Matt and Pete. They imagined some wild shit and after the Romans tried to end the hippy movement in an even heavier-handed way than Richard Daley did in Chicago in ’68 (and don’t think for a minute that he wouldn’t have *liked* to use crucifixion) Jesus’ living and aging druggie buddies decided to honor him by making their hallucinatory days a “reality”. The dumb-shit, dirt-poor, desert-dwellers of the time couldn’t help but buy in to this miraculous non-sense and started spreading it. That’s what happened.

    The burden of proof is now on you to show that this is *not* how the party ended!

  11. PhillyChief:

    How ironic if the “second coming” was brought about by science via cloning. Where’s Dan Brown? I want to pitch a story.

    Too late: The Genesis Code

  12. Doh!

    Evo: Jesus, Johny, Matt and Pete have crappy imaginations. They should have tried some mushrooms instead of the opium.

  13. Oh, they *were* doing mushrooms too, of course… they were fucking drop-outs.

    “Dude, I’m thirsty”

    “Dude, betcha I could turn that water into wine”

    “Dude, coooool”

  14. Doh!

    If Case’s book is what I think you are implying, he could no more bring back Christ through cloning than the boys from Brazil were actually little Hitlers. Or anymore than my identical twin would actually be me.

    I hate in when people get the science all wrong in SciFi. Little mistakes or oversteps are to be expected, but when a whole story is based on a single fallacious premise, it ruins it.

  15. Maybe I should consider myself lucky, but I've never actually met a catholic that seriously believed in the whole bread/wine -> flesh/blood thing. I have met plenty who didn’t understand the concept of the burden of proof, however.

  16. So the Last Supper was just a serious case of the munchies?

  17. That’s exactly right, Billy. And I await proof that its not.

  18. Those silly theists just don’t get the ‘burden of proof’ concept, then again a lot of them don’t get any logic at all.

  19. I think their “Atheist’s Challenge” was wack, too – but I found it quite hypocritical that you’re attacking them when you yourself consistently denied the burden of proof for your own positive claim that prayer studies were scientifically credible.

  20. 1. I didn’t rely on the prayer studies
    2. prayer studies are reliable to test the claim that prayers can do X
    3. The studies ALREADY have credibility; therefore if you want to dispute that credibility, that’s your burden of proof
    4. I’m tired of having to repeat this again and again and again and again, cl
    5. Will you ever comprehend burden of proof?


    I can’t say that I’ve met any Catholics who actually believe that shit about the cracker either, yet that doesn’t stop them from getting all bent over desecrating one of those crackers.

  21. SLC PUNK: Sean’s Acid Trip

  22. I’ll have to rent that, thanks.

  23. Prayer actually does have an effect Phillychief, as does meditation. The thing that Christians and Buddhists have wrong though is in their description of the mechanism. The actual truth of the matter is that prayer and meditation causes the subconscious mind to focus on a desired task, but Christians believe that their subconscious minds are the Holy Spirit because, to them, revelations and desires of the subconscious mind coming into consciousness seems to be external to their conscious mind and hence they believe that their own subconscious mind is of supernatural origins. Buddhists and Christians also believe in mind or spirit over matter, but mind is not external to matter although a disciplined mind may master matter through an intuitive knowledge of the forces of nature (i.e. anybody can break a brick by karate chopping or walk on hot coals if they train their minds and bodies to optimise the physical dynamics and thermodynamics of the process involved, it’s not magic and it’s certainly not spiritual either. Anybody can think quickly on their feet and say the right things, nothing magical about that either, there are no holy ghosts needed to randomly interpret vague texts out of context either).

    Often times, the Christian is amazed by their own subconscious minds and they lack a natural explanation for what they sense, and hence they attribute it all to the supernatural.

  24. Well I can see that. Martial arts benefit from conceptions of chi. The idea of focusing on this point of energy in the center of your body and also propelling it through yourself to strike others really helps. Doesn’t mean it’s real though.

    Hmmm, I might have to make a post about this. It addresses that whole efficacy of prayer thing quite nicely

  25. I trained for 17 years never needed a concept of chi and you can see me breaking inch thick pine boards with elbow and kick, physics has always been enough, then again my teacher designed military satellites for a living.

  26. Very cool. I like the very casual way you did it.

    Well the whole dan tien thing is really just center of gravity, and the bouncing chi thing is really just momentum, and through the crushing step, you create both a visible and audible display which can startle an opponent, giving the impression that your strike is more powerful than it is. In fact, it may be more effective because as the opponent is startled, he may hesitate or perhaps retreat back.

  27. You infidels just don’t get it, do you? The “proof” is in the experience, which you deny yourselves.

    The element of faith, is, to Christianity, what laboratory work is to secular science. Each is developed through practice and observation. You see nothing redeemable in Christianity, because, you never spend any time in it, except to mock. I, on the other hand, was forced to learn your dogma in public school. I know how it’s supposed to work, but, having gotten away from my humanist taskmasters, I was able to see ALL sides of the issues, and make my own decisions.

    It would be useless to try and relate the revelations and experiences possible to a mind open to prayer and meditation, to those that demand evidence that often defies carnal thinking processes and natural laws. In fact, the Bible does state that spiritual things can only be understood by spiritual minds. If that mind is continually focused on mockery, that ‘proof’ you demand will continue to elude you.

    There is value in analytical thinking, though, and even a philosophical outlook can reveal much about spirituality. However, it would seem that even that avenue is closed to you guys.

    Many Christians I know would say that you’re fucked, given the aforementioned criteria for understanding. I guess I’m a sucker for hard cases, though.

  28. Quiff, the human body does have latent abilities lost through generations of sin, however, your statement that the spiritual aspect is lost in the study of martial disciplines, is false.

    Again, we are getting into an area where you, a committed rebel, cannot hope to understand anything your programming won’t allow. Our resident practitioner, here, obviously studied only the technical side of martial arts. There can be a much more in-depth relationship with entities that originally developed these ‘arts’, allowing for abilities that can truly throw a detractor for a loop! (No pun intended!)

    There is much more I could say on this… but… then, again, it’s what’s spiritually discernible, you understand!


  29. Gideon “Each is developed through practice and observation.”No. One is developed through practice and imagination.

    “You see nothing redeemable in Christianity, because, you never spend any time in it, except to mock.”Really? I like the built-in social structure/safety net. Also, any ex-Christians here? Any former True Believers?

    “I, on the other hand, was forced to learn your dogma in public school. I know how it’s supposed to work, but, having gotten away from my humanist taskmasters, I was able to see ALL sides of the issues, and make my own decisions.”Then why don’t know know squat about evolution? (Ooo! Link time! Your Inner Fish, Making of the Fittest, Primates and Philosophers: How Morality Evolved, Endless Forms Most Beautiful, Relics of Eden. Note that I haven’t read the last two. They’re in my pile. The primate one sits half-read somewhere in my car).

    “In fact, the Bible does state that spiritual things can only be understood by spiritual minds.”Then why are the Taoists wrong? Buddhists? Hindus? Etc?

    “There is value in analytical thinking, though, and even a philosophical outlook can reveal much about spirituality. However, it would seem that even that avenue is closed to you guys.”Show me an astronomer who isn’t spiritual about his work and I’ll show you a shitty astronomer.

  30. Modus – I think you’ll like “Endless Forms” more than “Making of the Fittest”. It’s a little more technical as it really demonstrates the thinking behind Evo Devo. But, man, it’s a fascinating read.

  31. Here I thought this was going to be about cl. Interesting though it was, cl’s the one that doesn’t understand burden of proof.

    Then he shows up here, and repeats his mistake, one that we went ’round and ’round on at his blog.

    Glad to see you had the same response to him I did.

  32. Modus, there’s no fish in my inner self, nor my family tree, any more than there is a rational brain in your head. Your link fetish does nothing but promote the same humanist blather I was forced to listen to in school… and I obviously know more about EVILution than you, because you’re still caught up in it.

    And, to further demonstrate your ignorance, you bring eastern religions into the discussion, thinking that they even come close to comparing with Christianity. Spirituality has NOTHING to do with spiritual-ISM. In fact, spiritualism helped foster the THEORY of Evolution. Funny, that word THEORY… denoting something you Einsteins treat as fact!

    Spanish Cuspidor: You still haven’t proven anything by your THEORIES, either, so ante-up!

  33. What theories have I advanced?

    I'm beginning to think you don't understand burden of proof either.

  34. I understand it works both ways.

  35. Gideon "Modus, there's no fish in my inner self, nor my family tree…"Yes. Yes, there is. You can deny it, but your common ancestory is right there in your genes."…any more than there is a rational brain in your head."I try. Perhaps you should as well."Your link fetish does nothing but promote the same humanist blather I was forced to listen to in school…""Listen" is not the same as "understand", and it wasn't a "link fetish", it was links to books that explain the things that you say you've heard, but bear no indication of comprehending."…and I obviously know more about EVILution than you…"Yeah. You and Ray Comfort."And, to further demonstrate your ignorance, you bring eastern religions into the discussion…"I did? When I go Buddhist on you, buddy, you'll know it! You'll be all "la la la" and BOOM, you'll be surrounded by the Eightfold Path!"…thinking that they even come close to comparing with Christianity."One man's invisible friend is pretty much the same as any other. "Spirituality has NOTHING to do with spiritual-ISM."Yeah, one is just the feeling inside of "catching a glimse of more", while the other is using it to prove that imagination is more than imagination. The problem with the supernatural is that the right supernatural answer is all of them.

  36. “In fact, spiritualism helped foster the THEORY of Evolution.”Which was why from the very beginning of modern science, even the most religious of scientists found they had to drop “God did it” explanations in order to focus their field research and lab work on natural causes and effects and their complex relationships. By doing so, they learned a great deal more about the ways of the natural world as compared to those guided by the Bible and Aristotle.
    Many scientists are still religious. But what they do as scientists ceased being religious centuries ago.
    The world is indeed a very complex place. We humans have been fooled by it over and over again, seeing meaningful patterns–gods, demons, other spirits–where there were merely natural processes–thunder and lightning, light refraction, unusually high seasonal amounts of rainfall and snowfall. We have “disenchanted the world” when we booted out Thor, Covenant Rainbows, and Noah’s Flood from our explanatory toolkit…
    As I said in an earlier post, these devout, Christians discovered that they simply had to stick to analyses of natural causes and effects, leaving religious dogma out of their work as scientists, in order to deepen their understanding of the natural processes under study. Modern science began when scientists stopped answering all questions with “God did it.”
    The seriousness with which they took the study of nature, minus any supernatural storytelling is what distinguishes, say, modern astronomy from traditional astrology, or modern chemistry from traditional alchemy. Astrology and alchemy dealt with the universe as if it had human characteristics, desires, fears, anger–anthropomorphism. Astronomy and chemistry rely on the default assumption that nature is unthinking and uncaring, heedless of what human beings do, and so, not at all like human beings.
    And as I said above, many scientists today are still religious, but what they do as scientists is wholly non-religious. (fm townhall.com, believe it or not)
    “Funny, that word THEORY… denoting something you Einsteins treat as fact!”In science, the word theory refers to a comprehensive explanation of an important feature of nature supported by facts gathered over time. (fm wikipedia)I mean, really, how badly did those nefarious humanists in atheist indoctrinate camp hurt you?
    The thing with rational conversation, you see, is that both sides have to know about the subject at hand. I’ve given you links. Get reading. Then come back. Until then, remember that ignorance of something does not make you an expert. And make no mistake, you do not know what you’re talking about.

  37. Am I the only one losing linefeeds in between preview and post?

  38. No. That happened to me on another post, in Blogger.

  39. “I understand it works both ways.”.

    And with that, you’ve shown you don’t have a fucking clue about claims and burden of proof. Congrats!

    Should you ever consider treating your ignorance instead of letting it fester and spread throughout your mind, you could try looking at this or for more in depth study (with exercises), try this.

    Modus: Put a period after the italic tag in order to have the italic text be on its own line (Evo discovered this fix for Blogger’s new italics problem)

  40. Evo figured that out? Mr. What-the-fuck-is-HTML?

    It’s a miracle!

  41. @Philly – I don’t need any credit. Especially if it is going to inspire the smart-asses among us. :)

    @SI – He didn’t say I figured it out by having a clue about hypertext. I saw a problem, I found it I wasn’t alone, I fucked around and found a solution. Damn. Can a nigga get break?

  42. As if there’s anyone who comments here who isn’t a smartass. Oh and no breaks for you!

  43. Thanks so much, little brother. Appreciate you having my back.

Leave a Reply