Aug 11, 2010

The Real Face of Jesus

Some photos taken from the History Channel's documentary on the shroud of Turin. following the work of a group of computer artists using cutting edge technology to 'reveal' the real face of the Shroud. Whether you are a skeptic or a believer in the authenticity of the Shroud, the results are very moving, especially when the mysterious figure opens its eyes.  I've included the first part of You Tube's 9 part version of the documentary. Well worth taking a look. As with the Marian apparitions, however, one must put up with a bit of 'unctuousness' on the part of True Believers which is a bit off-putting. They gush over the Shroud and these recent results, when a bit more silence and reverence would have been more appropriate. If one is a believer and is up to date with the latest scientific findings on the Shroud, then it does seem to offer some support -mysteriously, elusively - to the contention of biblical scholars like Bishop N.T. Wright that the New Testament clearly testifies to a belief on the part of the early disciples that "something very strange happened to the body." Not the resuscitation of a corpse, but a total transformation that left the tomb empty. If one finds this hard to credit, think of the numerous instances of bilocation and tele-transportation on the part of Padre Pio, especially his ability - testified to by  many credible witnesses - of appearing on one side of the monastery in one instant, and suddenly appearing on the other side the next. A mysterious power exercised over the material order. This reminds me of a statement made by the great Indian sage, Sri Ramana Maharshi in the 1940's: "The fully realized divine master is capable of tapping into higher spiritual laws of the universe which science, in it's present state of primitive development, does not yet comprehend." Amen.

For those not familiar with the latest scientific findings on the Shroud, click here: Shroud of Turin: Facts and Fiction and Shroud of Turin for Journalists and The Shroud Story.

PRESS RELEASE from Ohio State University Conference (Aug. 2008) : Los Alamos National Laboratory team of scientists prove carbon 14 dating of the Shroud of Turin wrong

COLUMBUS, Ohio, August 15 — In his presentation today at The Ohio State University’s Blackwell Center, Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) chemist, Robert Villarreal, disclosed startling new findings proving that the sample of material used in 1988 to Carbon-14 (C-14) date the Shroud of Turin, which categorized the cloth as a medieval fake, could not have been from the original linen cloth because it was cotton. According to Villarreal, who lead the LANL team working on the project, thread samples they examined from directly adjacent to the C-14 sampling area were “definitely not linen” and, instead, matched cotton. Villarreal pointed out that “the [1988] age-dating process failed to recognize one of the first rules of analytical chemistry that any sample taken for characterization of an area or population must necessarily be representative of the whole. The part must be representative of the whole. Our analyses of the three thread samples taken from the Raes and C-14 sampling corner showed that this was not the case.” Villarreal also revealed that, during testing, one of the threads came apart in the middle forming two separate pieces. A surface resin, that may have been holding the two pieces together, fell off and was analyzed. Surprisingly, the two ends of the thread had different chemical compositions, lending credence to the theory that the threads were spliced together during a repair. 

LANL's work confirms the research published in Thermochimica Acta (Jan. 2005) by the late Raymond Rogers, a chemist who had studied actual C-14 samples and concluded the sample was not part of the original cloth possibly due to the area having been repaired. This hypothesis was presented by M. Sue Benford and Joseph G. Marino in Orvieto, Italy in 2000. Benford and Marino proposed that a 16th century patch of cotton/linen material was skillfully spliced into the 1st century original Shroud cloth in the region ultimately used for dating. The intermixed threads combined to give the dates found by the lapbs ranging between 1260 and 1390 AD. Benford and Marino contend that this expert repair was necessary to disguise an unauthorized relic taken from the corner of the cloth. A paper presented today at the conference by Benford and Marino, and to be published in the July/August issue of the international journal Chemistry Today, provided additional corroborating evidence for the repair theory. 


PrickliestPear said...

Thanks for posting that. Historically I've been quite a skeptic as far as the Shroud goes, but this has inspired me to keep an open mind.

Richard Demma said...

Glad to hear it helped. I've since updated the posting with some important links and the press release from the 2008 Ohio State University conference on the Shroud.

colkoch said...

Nice work Jayden. It may eventually turn out that both the shroud and the cloak from the Apparition of Guadalupe hold more clues to the nature of reality--the greater reality--than any other currently known artifacts.

Emphasis on 'currently known'.

Richard Demma said...

Funny you should mention it, Colleen...but when the carbon dating results were announced in 1989, I thought immediately of the Guadalupe cloak and thought that, well, I guess the Shroud is in that category - a mysterious, inexplicable, 'miraculous' artifact with no human explanation. I never thought it was a 'fake,' as so many claimed. Scientists were at pains to point out at the time that dating the shroud to the 15th century was not the same thing as calling it a fake, because the word 'fake' implied that (a) we knew for certain the shroud was a human artifact and (b) that it was created with the intention to deceive. Since we knew neither of those things, it remained a mystery ...until now when some of the mystery seems to be unveiling itself.

colkoch said...

I'm suddenly curious as to why LANL was interested in testing the Shroud. Around these parts LANL is not known for it's interested in religious artifacts--well not for religious purposes that is.