Entries Tagged as 'Religion'

Dead Sea Scrolls to go on the Internet

The Dead Sea Scrolls are going digital according to the Israel Antiquities Authority. This is pretty interesting since they’re basically releasing to digital form, scrolls that speak of early Jewish for the entire world to see instead of just educational institutions.
What’s interesting also is that this is going to take two years to complete, but I don’t see why they can’t just make the multi-volume disc media available online. The new digitized versions will include infrared scans of the scrolls that will shed some more light on parts that cannot be seen in visible light.
Overall, this is definitely an interesting historical work that will soon be available for all.
Photo Credit:(Dale Gillard)

(UPDATE 1): NARAL rejected from setting up SMS short code with Verizon

NARAL_logo.png Sort of disappointed with Verizon WIreless.
They’re refused NARAL, a pro-choice group that was looking to get a SMS short code.
It’s not that I don’t understand where they’re coming from, but they’re walking a REALLY fine line pulling the “contraversial content” out of their code of content. See, the problem with the whole the term contraversial is that it’s subjective, not objective. What else is that the text messages are a user requested content. Thus, you wouldn’t be getting this type of text message.
Here’s the logic behind this. For every person that finds NARAL contraversial, there’s also those that find certain religions contraversial. Go figure that FAITH is an SMS code. Don’t believe me? Go search for it on the CSCA search.


The point here isn’t if either group is contraversial. In fact, I could totally understand if using that policy line for a hate group. The point here is that it seems that they’re drawing a line between a moral stand which is up to each individual to make. The fact that SMS codes are a subscription type service means that the user has to agree to that service. Thus, the terms birds of a feather holds.
Since Verizon Wireless is NOT a private company anymore, they can’t make these types of decisions that wreak of conservative standings versus actual business decisions. If they were a private corporation, then I’d also understand the stance. I would be curious as to whom made this decision and where their faith and politics lie. It wouldn’t be surprising at all to me if there was a personal opinion in this decision.
In my opinion, this move will just turn into tremendously bad public relations for Verizon Wireless. You can’t expect to play that way and not expect it to come back to bite you in the rear. Very bad move. We’ll see if they recover from this or if they keep digging themselves into a hole. NARAL has all the right to make a huge fuss in this case as would any other organization that would be signing up for a SMS short code.
Lesson to be learned here? Public companies need to be fairly objective.
UPDATE 1 (2:45PM): That didn’t take long did it? Verizon was reversed its decision saying:

“It was an incorrect interpretation of a dusty internal policy,” Mr. Nelson said. “That policy, developed before text messaging protections such as spam filters adequately protected customers from unwanted messages, was designed to ward against communications such as anonymous hate messaging and adult materials sent to children.”

In that article, there are references to other groups that have used short codes such as the Republican National Committee, Save Darfur, and Amnesty International. Like I said before, someone was making a judgment call without actually viewing the policy and using it for what it was written for. In this aspect, it turned something shouldn’t have ballooned into a problem, into a bigger issue because someone chose to creatively interpret that clause. Glad to see that Verizon Wireless is doing the right thing and regaining the trust of their clientele.

It’s official: Jesus would probably download Ubuntu Linux

We suppose this was long coming, but Christians rejoice. There is also a linux for you. A site called What Would Jesus Download? has released Ubuntu: Christian Edition. They also have a site called Linux for Christians. Included in Ubuntu CE is GnomeSword, a Bible study program, and Dan’s Guardian, a web content filter tool where the parental control settings have been modified for Ubuntu CE. All in all, it’s your basic linux distro with some whistles geared towards Christianity.
When the Church won’t come to linux, bring linux to the church. Nice.
BoingBoing < UbuntuCE

Gospel of Judas

Gospel of Judas has been found and presented by the National Geographic Society and tells one of the most interesting stories. While Judas was the one that betrayed Jesus, in this Gospel, it seems that Jesus collaborated with Judas to have him betray Jesus and was in fact the most favored of the disciples. It was discovered in Egypt and is a copy (Coptic) of the original (Greek). It has been authenticated:

“The codex has been authenticated as a genuine work of ancient Christian apocryphal literature,” Mr. Garcia said, citing extensive tests of radiocarbon dating, ink analysis and multispectral imaging and studies of the script and linguistic style. The ink, for example, was consistent with ink of that era, and there was no evidence of multiple rewriting.

In any case, this will definitely be a text to contemplate and give more meaning to those of the faith. This shows a different perspective of the Bible and while some denominations do not take the Bible literally, there are others whose faith will be tested with the discovery of this text.
Via NYTimes

10,000 clerics against intelligent design

The numbers just keep getting bigger and bigger. This is definitely a male “my genitals are bigger than yours” type of fight. Just recently, 500 scientists signed a letter backing the pro-intelligent design Discovery Institute. Now Alliance for Science has finished The Clergy Project where they have received 10,000 signatures in support of evolution.
What we find terribly amusing about this topic is that it has been brought up before. Religion is the why and science is the how. Or something like that. In any case, you can definitely tell it’s a bunch of males strutting their stuff trying to impress… well, who knows.

DNA proof shakes Mormon world

DNA proof has shaken the Mormon world. Mormons have converted millions of Native Americans to the religion by saying that they were descendants of the lost tribe of Jews that sailed for the New World in 600 BC.

The God-fearing Nephites were “pure” (the word was officially changed from “white” in 1981) and “delightsome.” The idol-worshiping Lamanites received the “curse of blackness,” turning their skin dark.
According to the Book of Mormon, by 385 AD the dark-skinned Lamanites had wiped out other Hebrews. The Mormon church called the victors “the principal ancestors of the American Indians.” If the Lamanites returned to the church, their skin could once again become white.

Current DNA proof show that Native Americans descended not from the Middle East, but from Asia.
Via LATimes

NSFW: The notorious Danish cartoons

This has been tagged with NSFW (Not Suitable For Work). In the case that your employer or whomever gets annoyed and fires you based on viewing these potentially offensible material(s). LUX is not responsible for your actions.
Further warning. This is for informational sake since many can’t seem to “find” this and are wanting to know what it’s all about. We at LUX don’t agree with the cartoons, or the act but divulging the information to the want of readers whom are seeking to know what the fuss is about. It’s definitely a big fuss if you ask us so we’re just providing the links and letting you make your own judgments.
Since there apparently is a hankering for these cartoons, go look for yourself if you’re curious. I have no clue where TC dug it up, but these are the ones in question that no private media source is willing to touch. I don’t blame them. This is one of those things where you’re just asking to get burned if you feed the fire with pure oxygen.
Warning that Totally Crap is also NSFW.
TotallyCrap < OutsidetheBeltway

Vatican paper says Intelligent Design isn’t science

Echoing his fellow chief astronomer, Fiorenzo Facchini, a professor of evolutionary biology at the University of Bologna wrote that the Americans behind intelligent design were just confusing creationism with science.

Intelligent design “doesn’t belong to science and the pretext that it be taught as a scientific theory alongside Darwin’s explanation is unjustified,” he wrote.
“It only creates confusion between the scientific and philosophical and religious planes.”

Pretty amusing when one of the oldest Christian institutions has basically come out to say that ID is just confusing people on what is science and what is religion. On a personal level, I always took either to be very separate and on either of the spectrum. To many scientists, both Christian and non-Christian, this is definitely a sigh of relief for the Vatican to rip into ID as a pretend science.
Via CBSNews

Vatican says ID doesn’t belong in science classrooms

The Vatican’s chief astronomer has come out saying that intelligent design is not a science and does not belong in science classrooms. He goes on to say that if it were to be taught within a classroom, it should be grouped with religion or cultural history.
Rev. George Coyne also says that while he believes God created the universe, he does not think that God intervenes at every minute detail, and instead participates as an “encouraging parent”.

The Rev. George Coyne, the Jesuit director of the Vatican Observatory, said placing intelligent design theory alongside that of evolution in school programs was “wrong” and was akin to mixing apples with oranges.
“Intelligent design isn’t science even though it pretends to be,” the ANSA news agency quoted Coyne as saying on the sidelines of a conference in Florence. “If you want to teach it in schools, intelligent design should be taught when religion or cultural history is taught, not science.”

Well well. I suppose having the oldest second oldest Christian institution come out saying that ID doesn’t belong in science classrooms, should settle the matter. NOT. Don’t forget. We’re those stubborn Yankees! While some of the LUX staff are Christians, we all support the Church of the Spaghetti Monster and some of us are bonafide Pastarians.
UPDATE (10:49AMEST): Oops. Was corrected by Billy on Catholics being the second oldest Church. Thanks Billy!
Via YahooNews

The Church of Reality

The Church of Reality has been formally accepted by the IRS as a religion. Some might consider it blasphemous but then again, it crosses the boundaries just as intelligent design does.

The Church of Reality is a religion based on the practice of Realism, believing in everything that is real. Our motto is, “If it’s real, we believe in it.” Since no one knows all of reality, the Church of Reality is about the pursuit of reality the way it really is. We commit to being intellectually honest with ourselves and with others so that we can cut through the mythology. We want to know about the way things really are in the real world.

< ChurchofReality