Category Archives: Adrian Rogers

RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 137 Richard Feynman, theoretical physicist, Cal Tech, “I can’t believe the special stories that have been made up… because they seem to be be too simple, too local, too provincial”

___________

On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

I have attempted to respond to all of Dr. Kroto’s friends arguments and I have posted my responses one per week for over a year now. Here are some of my earlier posts:

Arif AhmedHaroon Ahmed,  Jim Al-Khalili, Louise Antony, Sir David AttenboroughMark BalaguerMahzarin Banaji Horace Barlow, Michael BateSir Patrick BatesonSimon Blackburn, Colin Blakemore, Ned BlockPascal BoyerSean Carroll, Patricia ChurchlandPaul Churchland, Aaron CiechanoverNoam Chomsky, Brian CoxPartha Dasgupta,  Alan Dershowitz, Jared DiamondFrank DrakeHubert Dreyfus, John DunnAlan Dundes, Christian de Duve, Ken EdwardsBart Ehrman, Mark ElvinRichard Ernst, Stephan Feuchtwang, Sir Raymond FirthRobert FoleyDavid Friend,  Riccardo GiacconiIvar Giaever , Roy GlauberRebecca Goldstein, A.C.GraylingDavid J. Gross,  Brian Greene, Susan Greenfield, Stephen Jay GouldStephen F Gudeman,  Alan Guth, Jonathan Haidt, Chris Hann,  Theodor W. Hänsch, Brian Harrison,  Stephen HawkingHermann Hauser, Peter HiggsRobert HindeRoald Hoffmann,  Bruce HoodGerard ‘t HooftCaroline HumphreyNicholas Humphrey,  Herbert Huppert,  Sir Andrew Fielding HuxleyLisa Jardine, Gareth Stedman Jones, Steve JonesShelly KaganMichio Kaku,  Stuart KauffmanChristof Koch, Masatoshi Koshiba,  Lawrence KraussHarry Kroto, George Lakoff,  Rodolfo Llinas, Seth Lloyd,  Elizabeth Loftus,  Alan Macfarlane,  Rudolph A. Marcus, Colin McGinnDan McKenzie,  Michael MannPeter MillicanMarvin MinskyLeonard Mlodinow,  P.Z.Myers,   Yujin NagasawaAlva NoeDouglas Osheroff, David Parkin,  Jonathan Parry, Roger Penrose,  Saul Perlmutter, Max PerutzHerman Philipse,  Carolyn PorcoRobert M. PriceVS RamachandranLisa RandallLord Martin ReesColin RenfrewAlison Richard,  C.J. van Rijsbergen,  Oliver Sacks, John SearleMarcus du SautoySimon SchafferJ. L. Schellenberg,   Lee Silver Peter Singer,  Walter Sinnott-ArmstrongQuentin SkinnerRonald de Sousa, Victor StengerJohn SulstonBarry Supple,   Leonard Susskind, Raymond TallisMax Tegmark, Michael Tooley,  Neil deGrasse Tyson,  Martinus J. G. Veltman, Craig Venter.Alexander Vilenkin, Sir John Walker, James D. WatsonFrank WilczekSteven Weinberg, and  Lewis Wolpert,

Richard Feynman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
“Feynman” redirects here. For other uses, see Feynman (disambiguation).
Richard Feynman
Richard Feynman Nobel.jpg
Born Richard Phillips Feynman
May 11, 1918
Queens, New York, U.S.
Died February 15, 1988 (aged 69)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Resting place Mountain View Cemetery and Mausoleum, Altadena, California, U.S.
Nationality American
Fields Theoretical physics
Institutions Cornell University
California Institute of Technology
Alma mater Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Princeton University
Thesis The Principle of Least Action in Quantum Mechanics (1942)
Doctoral advisor John Archibald Wheeler
Doctoral students
Other notable students
Known for
Notable awards
Spouse Arline Greenbaum (m. 1941; d. 1945)
Mary Louise Bell (m. 1952–56)
Gweneth Howarth (m. 1960)
Children Carl Feynman
Michelle Feynman
Signature

Richard Phillips Feynman (/ˈfnmən/; May 11, 1918 – February 15, 1988) was an American theoretical physicist known for his work in the path integral formulation of quantum mechanics, the theory of quantum electrodynamics, and the physics of the superfluidity of supercooled liquid helium, as well as in particle physics for which he proposed the parton model. For his contributions to the development of quantum electrodynamics, Feynman, jointly with Julian Schwinger and Sin’ichirō Tomonaga, received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1965.

Feynman developed a widely used pictorial representation scheme for the mathematical expressions governing the behavior of subatomic particles, which later became known as Feynman diagrams. During his lifetime, Feynman became one of the best-known scientists in the world. In a 1999 poll of 130 leading physicists worldwide by the British journal Physics World he was ranked as one of the ten greatest physicists of all time.[1]

He assisted in the development of the atomic bomb during World War II and became known to a wide public in the 1980s as a member of the Rogers Commission, the panel that investigated the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster. In addition to his work in theoretical physics, Feynman has been credited with pioneering the field of quantum computing, and introducing the concept of nanotechnology. He held the Richard C. Tolmanprofessorship in theoretical physics at the California Institute of Technology.

Feynman was a keen popularizer of physics through both books and lectures, including a 1959 talk on top-down nanotechnology called There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom, and the three-volume publication of his undergraduate lectures, The Feynman Lectures on Physics. Feynman also became known through his semi-autobiographical books Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman! and What Do You Care What Other People Think? and books written about him, such as Tuva or Bust! and Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman by James Gleick.

Early life[edit]

Richard Phillips Feynman was born on May 11, 1918, in Queens, New York City,[2] to Lucille née Phillips, a homemaker, and Melville Arthur Feynman, a sales manager,[3] originally from Minsk in Belarus,[4] in those days part of the Russian Empire; both were Ashkenazi Jews.[5] They were not religious, and by his youth, Feynman described himself as an “avowed atheist“.[6] He also stated “To select, for approbation the peculiar elements that come from some supposedly Jewish heredity is to open the door to all kinds of nonsense on racial theory”, and adding, “at thirteen I was not only converted to other religious views, but I also stopped believing that the Jewish people are in any way ‘the chosen people‘.”[7] Later in his life, during a visit to the Jewish Theological Seminary, he encountered the Talmud for the first time and remarked that it contained a medieval kind of reasoning and was a wonderful book.[8]

Like Albert Einstein and Edward Teller, Feynman was a late talker, and by his third birthday had yet to utter a single word. He retained a Brooklyn accent as an adult.[9][10] That accent was thick enough to be perceived as an affectation or exaggeration[11][12] – so much so that his good friends Wolfgang Pauli and Hans Bethe once commented that Feynman spoke like a “bum”.[11] The young Feynman was heavily influenced by his father, who encouraged him to ask questions to challenge orthodox thinking, and who was always ready to teach Feynman something new. From his mother, he gained the sense of humor that he had throughout his life. As a child, he had a talent for engineering, maintained an experimental laboratory in his home, and delighted in repairing radios. When he was in grade school, he created a home burglar alarm system while his parents were out for the day running errands.[13]

When Richard was five years old, his mother gave birth to a younger brother, Henry Philips, who died at four weeks of age on February 25, 1924.[14] Four years later, Richard’s sister Joan was born, and the family moved to Far Rockaway, Queens.[3] Though separated by nine years, Joan and Richard were close, as they both shared a natural curiosity about the world. Their mother thought that women did not have the cranial capacity to comprehend such things. Despite their mother’s disapproval of Joan’s desire to study astronomy, Richard encouraged his sister to explore the universe. Joan eventually became an astrophysicist specializing in interactions between the Earth and the solar wind.[15]

Manhattan Project[edit]

Feynman’s Los Alamos ID badge

In 1941, with World War II raging in Europe but the United States not yet at war, Feynman spent the summer working on ballistics problems at the Frankford Arsenal in Pennsylvania.[43][44] After the attack on Pearl Harbor had brought the United States into the war, Feynman was recruited by Robert R. Wilson, who was working on means to produce enriched uranium for use in an atomic bomb, as part of what would become the Manhattan Project.[45][46] Wilson’s team at Princeton was working on a device called an isotron, which would electromagnetically separate uranium-235 from uranium-238. This was done in a quite different manner from that used by the calutron that was under development by a team under Wilson’s former mentor, Ernest O. Lawrence, at the Radiation Laboratory at the University of California. On paper, the isotron was many times as efficient as the calutron, but Feynman and Paul Olum struggled to determine whether or not it was practical. Ultimately, on Lawrence’s recommendation, the isotron project was abandoned.[47]

At this juncture, in early 1943, Robert Oppenheimer was establishing the Los Alamos Laboratory, a secret laboratory on a remote mesa in New Mexico where atomic bombs would be designed and built. An offer was made to the Princeton team to be redeployed there. “Like a bunch of professional soldiers,” Wilson later recalled, “we signed up, en masse, to go to Los Alamos.”[48] Like many other young physicists, Feynman soon fell under the spell of the charismatic Oppenheimer, who telephoned Feynman long distance from Chicago to inform him that he had found a sanatorium in Albuquerque, New Mexico, for Arline. They were among the first to depart for New Mexico, leaving on a train on March 28, 1943. The railroad supplied Arline with a wheelchair, and Feynman paid extra for a private room for her.[49]

At Los Alamos, Feynman was assigned to Hans Bethe’s Theoretical (T) Division,[50] and impressed Bethe enough to be made a group leader.[51] He and Bethe developed the Bethe–Feynman formula for calculating the yield of a fission bomb, which built upon previous work by Robert Serber.[52] As a junior physicist, he was not central to the project. He administered the computation group of human computers in the theoretical division. With Stanley Frankel and Nicholas Metropolis, he assisted in establishing a system for using IBM punched cards for computation.[53] He invented a new method of computing logarithms that he later used on the Connection Machine.[54][55]Other work at Los Alamos included calculating neutron equations for the Los Alamos “Water Boiler”, a small nuclear reactor, to measure how close an assembly of fissile material was to criticality.[56]

On completing this work, Feynman was sent to the Clinton Engineer Works in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, where the Manhattan Project had its uranium enrichment facilities. He aided the engineers there in devising safety procedures for material storage so that criticality accidents could be avoided, especially when enriched uranium came into contact with water, which acted as a neutron moderator. He insisted on giving the rank and file a lecture on nuclear physics so that they would realize the dangers.[57] He explained that while any amount of unenriched uranium could be safely stored, the enriched uranium had to be carefully handled. He developed a series of safety recommendations for the various grades of enrichments.[58] He was told that if the people at Oak Ridge gave him any difficulty with his proposals, he was to inform them that Los Alamos “could not be responsible for their safety otherwise”.[59]

At the 1946 colloquium on the Super at the Los Alamos Laboratory. Feynman is in the second row, fourth from the left, next to Robert Oppenheimer

Returning to Los Alamos, Feynman was put in charge of the group responsible for the theoretical work and calculations on the proposed uranium hydride bomb, which ultimately proved to be infeasible.[51][60] He was sought out by physicist Niels Bohr for one-on-one discussions. He later discovered the reason: most of the other physicists were too much in awe of Bohr to argue with him. Feynman had no such inhibitions, vigorously pointing out anything he considered to be flawed in Bohr’s thinking. He said he felt as much respect for Bohr as anyone else, but once anyone got him talking about physics, he would become so focused he forgot about social niceties. Perhaps because of this, Bohr never warmed to Feynman.[61][62]

Due to the top secret nature of the work, the Los Alamos Laboratory was isolated. Feynman indulged his curiosity by discovering the combination locks on cabinets and desks used to secure papers. He found that people tended to leave their safes unlocked, or leave them on the factory settings, or write the combinations down, or use easily guessable combinations like dates.[63] Feynman played jokes on colleagues. In one case he found the combination to a locked filing cabinet by trying the numbers he thought a physicist would use (it proved to be 27–18–28 after the base of natural logarithms, e = 2.71828…), and found that the three filing cabinets where a colleague kept a set of atomic bomb research notes all had the same combination. He left a series of notes in the cabinets as a prank, which initially spooked his colleague, Frederic de Hoffmann, into thinking a spy or saboteur had gained access to atomic bomb secrets.[64]

Feynman’s salary was $380 a month, about half what he needed to cover his modest living expenses and Arline’s medical bills. The rest came from her $3,300 in savings.[65] On weekends, Feynman drove to Albuquerque to see his ailing wife in a car borrowed from his good friend Klaus Fuchs.[66][67] Asked who at Los Alamos was most likely to be a spy, Fuchs speculated that Feynman, with his safe cracking and frequent trips to Albuquerque, was the most likely candidate.[66] When Fuchs confessed to being a spy for the Soviet Union in 1950, this would be seen in a different light.[68] The FBI would compile a bulky file on Feynman.[69]

Feynman (center) with Robert Oppenheimer (viewer’s right, next to Feynman) at a Los Alamos Laboratory social function during the Manhattan Project

Feynman was working in the computing room when he was informed that Arline was dying. He borrowed Fuchs’ car and drove to Albuquerque where he sat with her for hours until she died on June 16, 1945.[70] He immersed himself in work on the project and was present at the Trinity nuclear test. Feynman claimed to be the only person to see the explosion without the very dark glasses or welder’s lenses provided, reasoning that it was safe to look through a truck windshield, as it would screen out the harmful ultraviolet radiation. On witnessing the blast, Feynman ducked towards the floor of his truck because of the immense brightness of the explosion, where he saw a temporary “purple splotch” afterimage of the event.[71]

Cornell[edit]

Feynman nominally held an appointment at the University of Wisconsin–Madison as an assistant professor of physics, but was on unpaid leave during his involvement in the Manhattan project.[72] In 1945, he received a letter from Dean Mark Ingraham of the College of Letters and Science requesting his return to the university to teach in the coming academic year. His appointment was not extended when he did not commit to returning. In a talk given there several years later, Feynman quipped, “It’s great to be back at the only university that ever had the good sense to fire me.”[73]

As early as 30 October 1943, Bethe had written to the chairman of the physics department of his university, Cornell, to recommend that Feynman be hired. On 28 February 1944, this was endorsed by Robert Bacher,[74] also from Cornell,[75] and one of the most senior scientists at Los Alamos.[76] This led to an offer being made in August 1944, which Feynman accepted. Oppenheimer had also hoped to recruit Feynman to the University of California, but the head of the physics department, Raymond T. Birge was reluctant. Eventually, he made Feynman an offer in May 1945, but Feynman turned it down. Cornell did, however, match its salary offer of $3,900 per annum.[74] Feynman became one of the first of the Los Alamos Laboratory’s group leader to depart, leaving for Ithaca, New York, in October 1945.[77]

Since Feynman was no longer working at the Los Alamos Laboratory, he was no longer exempt from the draft and was called up by the Army in the fall of 1946. He avoided this by faking mental illness, and the Army gave him a 4-F exemption on mental grounds.[78][79] This may not have been an incorrect assessment; his father died suddenly on 8 October 1946, and Feynman suffered from depression.[80] On October 17, 1946, he wrote a letter to Arline, expressing his deep love and heartbreak. This letter was sealed and only opened after his death. “Please excuse my not mailing this,” the letter concluded, “but I don’t know your new address.”[81]

Unable to focus on research problems, Feynman began tackling physics problems, not for utility, but for self-satisfaction.[80] One of these involved analyzing the physics of a twirling, nutating disk as it is moving through the air, inspired by an incident in the cafeteria at Cornell when someone tossed a dinner plate in the air.[82] He read the work of Sir William Rowan Hamilton on quaternions, and attempted unsuccessfully to use them to formulate a relativistic theory of electrons. His work during this period, which used equations of rotation to express various spinning speeds, ultimately proved important to his Nobel Prize–winning work, yet because he felt burned out and had turned his attention to less immediately practical problems, he was surprised by the offers of professorships from other renowned universities, including the Institute for Advanced Study, the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of California, Berkeley.[80]

Feynman diagram of electron/positron annihilation

Feynman was not the only frustrated theoretical physicist in the early post-war years. Quantum electrodynamics suffered from infinite integrals in perturbation theory. These were clear mathematical flaws in the theory, which Feynman and Wheeler had unsuccessfully attempted to work around.[83] “Theoreticians”, noted Murray Gell-Mann, “were in disgrace.”[84] In June 1947, leading American physicists met at the Shelter Island Conference. For Feynman, it was his “first big conference with big men … I had never gone to one like this one in peacetime.”[85] The problems plaguing quantum electrodynamics were discussed, but the theoreticians were completely overshadowed by the achievements of the experimentalists, who reported the discovery of the Lamb shift, the measurement of the magnetic moment of the electron, and Robert Marshak‘s two-meson hypothesis.[86]

Bethe took the lead from the work of Hans Kramers, and derived a renormalized non-relativistic quantum equation for the Lamb shift. The next step was to create a relativistic version. Feynman thought that he could do this, but when he went back to Bethe with his solution, it did not converge.[87] Feynman carefully worked through the problem again, applying the path integral formulation that he had used in his thesis. Like Bethe, he made the integral finite by applying a cut-off term. The result corresponded to Bethe’s version.[88][89] Feynman presented his work to his peers at the Pocono Conference in 1948. It did not go well. Julian Schwinger gave a long presentation of his work in quantum electrodynamics, and Feynman then offered his version, titled “Alternative Formulation of Quantum Electrodynamics”. The unfamiliar Feynman diagrams, used for the first time, puzzled the audience. Feynman failed to get his point across, and Paul Dirac, Edward Teller and Niels Bohr all raised objections.[90][91]

To Freeman Dyson, one thing at least was clear: Sin’ichirō Tomonaga, Schwinger and Feynman understood what they were talking about even if no one else did, but had not published anything. Moreover, he was convinced that Feynman’s formulation was easier to understand, and ultimately managed to convince Oppenheimer that this was the case.[92] Dyson published a paper in 1949, which added new rules to Feynman’s that told how to implement renormalization.[93] Feynman was prompted to publish his ideas in the Physical Review in a series of papers over three years.[94] His 1948 papers on “A Relativistic Cut-Off for Classical Electrodynamics” attempted to explain what he had been unable to get across at Pocono.[95] His 1949 paper on “The Theory of Positrons” addressed the Schrödinger equation and Dirac Equation, and introduced what is now called the Feynman propagator.[96] Finally, in papers on the “Mathematical Formulation of the Quantum Theory of Electromagnetic Interaction” in 1950 and “An Operator Calculus Having Applications in Quantum Electrodynamics” in 1951, he developed the mathematical basis of his ideas, derived familiar formulae and advanced new ones.[97]

While papers by others initially cited Schwinger, papers citing Feynman and employing Feynman diagrams appeared in 1950, and soon became prevalent.[98] Students learned and used the powerful new tool that Feynman had created. Eventually, computer programs were written to compute Feynman diagrams, providing a tool of unprecedented power. It is possible to write such programs because the Feynman diagrams constitute a formal language with a formal grammar. Marc Kac provided the formal proofs of the summation under history, showing that the parabolic partial differential equation can be reexpressed as a sum under different histories (that is, an expectation operator), what is now known as the Feynman–Kac formula, the use of which extends beyond physics to many applications of stochastic processes.[99] To Schwinger, the Feynman diagram was “pedagogy, not physics”.[100]

By 1949, Feynman was becoming restless at Cornell. He never settled into a particular house or apartment, living in guest houses or student residences, or with married friends “until these arrangements became sexually volatile”.[101] He liked to date undergraduates, hire prostitutes, and sleep with the wives of friends.[102] He was not fond of Ithaca’s cold winter weather, and pined for a warmer climate.[103] Above all, at Cornell he was always in the shadow of Hans Bethe.[101] Feynman did, however, look back favorably on the Telluride House, where he resided for a large period of his Cornell career. In an interview he described the House as “a group of boys that [sic] have been specially selected because of their scholarship, because of their cleverness or whatever it is, to be given free board and lodging and so on, because of their brains”. He enjoyed the house’s convenience and said that “it’s there that I did the fundamental work” for which he won the Nobel Prize.[104][105]

Caltech years[edit]

Personal and political life[edit]

Feynman spent several weeks in Rio de Janeiro in July 1949,[106] and brought back a woman called Clotilde from Copacabana who lived with him in Ithaca for a time. In addition to the cold weather, there was also the Cold War. The Soviet Union detonated its first atomic bomb in 1949, generating anti-communist hysteria.[107] Fuchs was arrested as a Soviet spy in 1950, and the FBI questioned Bethe about Feynman’s loyalty.[108] Physicist David Bohm was arrested on December 4, 1950,[109] and emigrated to Brazil in October 1951.[110] A girlfriend told Feynman that he should consider moving to South America.[107] He had a sabbatical coming for 1951–52,[111] and elected to spend it in Brazil, where he gave courses at the Centro Brasileiro de Pesquisas Físicas. In Brazil, Feynman was particularly impressed with the Samba music, and learned to play a metal percussion instrument, the frigideira.[112] He was an enthusiastic amateur player of bongo drums and often played them in the pit orchestra in musicals.[113] He spent time in Rio with his good friend Bohm, but Bohm could not convince Feynman to take up investigating Bohm’s ideas on physics.[114]

Feynman did not return to Cornell. Bacher, who had been instrumental in bringing Feynman to Cornell, had lured him to the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). Part of the deal was that he could spend his first year on sabbatical in Brazil.[115][101] He had become smitten by Mary Louise Bell, a platinum blonde from Neodesha, Kansas. They had met in a cafeteria in Cornell, where she had studied the history of Mexican art and textiles. She later followed him to Caltech, where he gave a lecture. While he was in Brazil, she had taught classes on the history of furniture and interiors at Michigan State University. He proposed to her by mail from Rio de Janeiro, and they married in Boise, Idaho, on June 28, 1952, shortly after he returned. They frequently quarrelled and she was frightened by his violent temper. Their politics were different; although he registered and voted as a Republican, she was more conservative, and her opinion on the 1954 Oppenheimer security hearing (“Where there’s smoke there’s fire”) offended him. They separated on May 20, 1956. An interlocutory decree of divorce was entered on June 19, 1956, on the grounds of “extreme cruelty”. The divorce became final on May 5, 1958.[116][117]

In the wake of the 1957 Sputnik crisis, the U.S. government’s interest in science rose for a time. Feynman was considered for a seat on the President’s Science Advisory Committee, but was not appointed. At this time the FBI interviewed a woman close to Feynman, possibly Mary Lou, who sent a written statement to J. Edgar Hoover on August 8, 1958:

I do not know—but I believe that Richard Feynman is either a Communist or very strongly pro-Communist—and as such as [sic] a very definite security risk. This man is, in my opinion, an extremely complex and dangerous person, a very dangerous person to have in a position of public trust … In matters of intrigue Richard Feynman is, I believe immensely clever—indeed a genius—and he is, I further believe, completely ruthless, unhampered by morals, ethics, or religion—and will stop at absolutely nothing to achieve his ends.[117]

The government did, however, send Feynman to Geneva for the September 1958 Atoms for Peace Conference. On the beach on Lake Geneva, he met Gweneth Howarth, who was from Ripponden, Yorkshire, and working in Switzerland as an au pair. Feynman’s love life had been turbulent since his divorce; his previous girlfriend had walked off with his Albert Einstein Award medal, and, on the advice of an earlier girlfriend, had feigned pregnancy and blackmailed him into paying for an abortion, then used the money to buy furniture. When Feynman found that Howarth was being paid only $25 a month, he offered her $20 a week to be his live-in maid. That this sort of behavior was illegal was not overlooked; Feynman had a friend, Matthew Sands, act as her sponsor. Howarth pointed out that she already had two boyfriends, but eventually decided to take Feynman up on his offer, and arrived in Altadena, California, in June 1959. She made a point of dating other men but Feynman proposed in the spring of 1960. They were married on September 24, 1960, at the Huntington Hotel in Pasadena. They had a son, Carl, in 1962, and adopted a daughter, Michelle, in 1968.[118][119] Besides their home in Altadena, they had a beach house in Baja California, purchased with the money from Feynman’s Nobel Prize.[120]

Feynman tried LSD during his professorship at Caltech.[121][122] He also tried marijuana and ketamine experiences at John Lilly‘s famed sensory deprivation tanks, as a way of studying consciousness.[121][123] He gave up alcohol when he began to show vague, early signs of alcoholism, as he did not want to do anything that could damage his brain.[122]

Physics[edit]

At Caltech, Feynman investigated the physics of the superfluidity of supercooled liquid helium, where helium seems to display a complete lack of viscosity when flowing. Feynman provided a quantum-mechanical explanation for the Soviet physicist Lev D. Landau’s theory of superfluidity.[124] Applying the Schrödinger equation to the question showed that the superfluid was displaying quantum mechanical behavior observable on a macroscopic scale. This helped with the problem of superconductivity, but the solution eluded Feynman.[125] It was solved with the BCS theory of superconductivity, proposed by John Bardeen, Leon Neil Cooper, and John Robert Schrieffer.[124]

Richard Feynman at the Robert Treat Paine Estate in Waltham, Massachusetts, in 1984.

With Murray Gell-Mann, Feynman developed a model of weak decay, which showed that the current coupling in the process is a combination of vector and axial currents (an example of weak decay is the decay of a neutron into an electron, a proton, and an antineutrino). Although E. C. George Sudarshan and Robert Marshak developed the theory nearly simultaneously, Feynman’s collaboration with Murray Gell-Mann was seen as seminal because the weak interaction was neatly described by the vector and axial currents. It thus combined the 1933 beta decay theory of Enrico Fermi with an explanation of parity violation.[126]

From his diagrams of a small number of particles interacting in spacetime, Feynman could then model all of physics in terms of the spins of those particles and the range of coupling of the fundamental forces. Feynman attempted an explanation of the strong interactions governing nucleons scattering called the parton model. The parton model emerged as a complement to the quark model developed by Gell-Mann. The relationship between the two models was murky; Gell-Mann referred to Feynman’s partons derisively as “put-ons”. In the mid-1960s, physicists believed that quarks were just a bookkeeping device for symmetry numbers, not real particles; the statistics of the Omega-minus particle, if it were interpreted as three identical strange quarks bound together, seemed impossible if quarks were real.[127][128]

The SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory deep inelastic scattering experiments of the late 1960s showed that nucleons (protons and neutrons) contained point-like particles that scattered electrons. It was natural to identify these with quarks, but Feynman’s parton model attempted to interpret the experimental data in a way that did not introduce additional hypotheses. For example, the data showed that some 45% of the energy momentum was carried by electrically neutral particles in the nucleon. These electrically neutral particles are now seen to be the gluons that carry the forces between the quarks, and their three-valued color quantum number solves the Omega-minus problem. Feynman did not dispute the quark model; for example, when the fifth quark was discovered in 1977, Feynman immediately pointed out to his students that the discovery implied the existence of a sixth quark, which was discovered in the decade after his death.[127][129]

After the success of quantum electrodynamics, Feynman turned to quantum gravity. By analogy with the photon, which has spin 1, he investigated the consequences of a free massless spin 2 field, and derived the Einstein field equation of general relativity, but little more. The computational device that Feynman discovered then for gravity, “ghosts”, which are “particles” in the interior of his diagrams that have the “wrong” connection between spin and statistics, have proved invaluable in explaining the quantum particle behavior of the Yang–Mills theories, for example, quantum chromodynamics and the electro-weak theory.[130] He did work on all four of the forces of nature: electromagnetic, the weak force, the strong force and gravity. John and Mary Gribbin say in their book on Feynman: “Nobody else has made such influential contributions to the investigation of all four of the interactions”.[131]

Partly as a way to bring publicity to progress in physics, Feynman offered $1,000 prizes for two of his challenges in nanotechnology; one was claimed by William McLellan and the other by Tom Newman.[132] He was also one of the first scientists to conceive the possibility of quantum computers.[133][134] In 1984–86, he developed a variational method for the approximate calculation of path integrals, which has led to a powerful method of converting divergent perturbation expansions into convergent strong-coupling expansions (variational perturbation theory) and, as a consequence, to the most accurate determination[135] of critical exponents measured in satellite experiments.[136]

Surely You’re Joking Mr. Feynman[edit]

In the 1960s, Feynman began thinking of writing an autobiography, and he began granting interviews to historians. In the 1980s, working with Ralph Leighton (Robert Leighton’s son), he recorded chapters on audio tape that Robert transcribed. The book was published in 1985 as Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman! and became a best-seller. The publication of the book brought a new wave of protest about Feynman’s attitude toward women. There had been protests over his alleged sexism in 1968, and again in 1972. It did not help that Jenijoy La Belle, who had been hired as Caltech’s first female professor in 1969, was refused tenure in 1974. She filed suit with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which ruled against Caltech in 1977, adding that she had been paid less than male colleagues. La Belle finally received tenure in 1979. Many of Feynman’s colleagues were surprised that he took her side. He had gotten to know her, and both liked and admired her.[146][147]

Gell-Mann was upset by Feyman’s account in the book of the weak interaction work, and threatened to sue, resulting in a correction being inserted in later editions.[148] This incident was just the latest provocation in a decades-long bad feeling between the two scientists. Gell-Mann often expressed frustration at the attention Feynman received;[149] he remarked: “[Feynman] was a great scientist, but he spent a great deal of his effort generating anecdotes about himself.”[150] He noted that Feynman’s eccentricities included a refusal to brush his teeth, which he advised others not to do on national television, despite dentists showing him scientific studies that supported the practice.[150]

Challenger disaster[edit]

Feynman played an important role on the Presidential Rogers Commission, which investigated the Challenger disaster. During a televised hearing, Feynman demonstrated that the material used in the shuttle’s O-rings became less resilient in cold weather by compressing a sample of the material in a clamp and immersing it in ice-cold water.[151] The commission ultimately determined that the disaster was caused by the primary O-ring not properly sealing in unusually cold weather at Cape Canaveral.[152]

Feynman devoted the latter half of his book What Do You Care What Other People Think? to his experience on the Rogers Commission, straying from his usual convention of brief, light-hearted anecdotes to deliver an extended and sober narrative. Feynman’s account reveals a disconnect between NASA‘s engineers and executives that was far more striking than he expected. His interviews of NASA’s high-ranking managers revealed startling misunderstandings of elementary concepts. For instance, NASA managers claimed that there was a 1 in 100,000 chance of a catastrophic failure aboard the shuttle, but Feynman discovered that NASA’s own engineers estimated the chance of a catastrophe at closer to 1 in 200. He concluded that NASA management’s estimate of the reliability of the space shuttle was unrealistic, and he was particularly angered that NASA used it to recruit Christa McAuliffe into the Teacher-in-Space program. He warned in his appendix to the commission’s report (which was included only after he threatened not to sign the report), “For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled.”[153]

Recognition and awards[edit]

The first public recognition of Feynman’s work came in 1954, when Lewis Strauss, the chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) notified him that he had won the Albert Einstein Award, which was worth $15,000 and came with a gold medal. Because of Strauss’ actions in stripping Oppenheimer of his security clearance, Feynman was reluctant to accept the award, but Isidor Isaac Rabi cautioned him: “You should never turn a man’s generosity as a sword against him. Any virtue that a man has, even if he has many vices, should not be used as a tool against him.”[154] This was followed by the AEC’s Ernest Orlando Lawrence Award in 1962.[155] In 1965, he shared the Nobel Prize in Physics with Schwinger and Tomonaga “for their fundamental work in quantum electrodynamics, with deep-ploughing consequences for the physics of elementary particles”.[156] He was elected a Foreign Member of the Royal Society in 1965,[2][157] and received the Oersted Medal in 1972,[158] and the National Medal of Science in 1979.[159] He was elected a member of the National Academy of Sciences, but ultimately resigned and is no longer listed by them.[160]

Death[edit]

In 1978 Feynman sought medical treatment for abdominal pains, and was diagnosed with liposarcoma, a rare form of cancer. Surgeons removed a tumor the size of a football that had crushed his kidney and spleen. Further operations were performed in October 1986 and October 1987.[161] He was again hospitalized at the UCLA Medical Center on February 3, 1988. A ruptured duodenal ulcer caused kidney failure, and he declined to undergo the dialysis that might have prolonged his life for a few months. Watched over by his wife Gweneth, sister Joan, and cousin Frances Lewine, he died on February 15, 1988.[162]

When the end was near, Feynman asked Danny Hillis why he was so sad. He replied that he thought Feynman was going to die soon. Feynman said that that sometimes bothered him, too, adding, when you get to be as old as he was, and have told so many stories to so many people, even when he was dead he wouldn’t be completely gone.[163]

Near the end of his life, Feynman attempted to visit the Russian land of Tuva, a dream thwarted by Cold War bureaucratic issues – the letter from the Soviet government authorizing the trip was not received until the day after he died. His daughter Michelle later undertook the journey.[164] His burial was at Mountain View Cemetery and Mausoleum in Altadena.[165] His last words were: “I’d hate to die twice. It’s so boring.”[164]

Films and plays[edit]

  • Infinity, a movie both directed by and starring Matthew Broderick as Feynman, depicting his love affair with his first wife and ending with the Trinity test. 1996.
  • Parnell, Peter (2002) “QED” Applause Books, ISBN 978-1-55783-592-5, (play).
  • Whittell, Crispin (2006) “Clever Dick” Oberon Books, (play)
  • “The Quest for Tannu Tuva”, with Richard Feynman and Ralph Leighton. 1987, BBC Horizon and PBS Nova (entitled “Last Journey of a Genius”).
  • “No Ordinary Genius” A two-part documentary about Feynman’s life and work, with contributions from colleagues, friends and family. 1993, BBC Horizon and PBS Nova (a one-hour version, under the title “The Best Mind Since Einstein”) (2 × 50-minute films)
  • The Challenger (2013) A BBC Two factual drama starring William Hurt, tells the story of American Nobel prize-winning physicist Richard Feynman’s determination to reveal the truth behind the 1986 space shuttle Challenger disaster.
  • The Fantastic Mr Feynman. One hour documentary. 2013, BBC TV.

External links[edit]

In  the first video below in the 3rd clip in this series are his words and  my response is below them. 

50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2)

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

__

John Piippo in his article 50 Renowned Academics (Atheists) Speaking About God – A Review, (August 05, 2011) concerning Feynam’s quote (which is in bold).

  1. Richard Feynman (physics)
  1. “I can’t believe the special stories that have been made up… because they seem to be be too simple, too local, too provincial.” I think this is a good objection, one to be taken seriously. I don’t, of course, think it is adequate to claim that the Jesus story has been “made up.” We need to bring in historical studies here. The Jesus-claim is that it is a story rooted in historical events. Historiographical research contains its own unique set of problems, especially as regards the matter of “evidence.”

Let me give 4 short responses.

FIRST, Romans 1 points that every person has a God-given conscience instead of them that tells them that God exists. The interesting factor is that this can be tested by a lie-detector and there was a proposition I made to the FELLOWS of CSICOP concerning that in the 1990’s.  I was very honored that many of the them replied (including Antony Flew and Carl Sagan).

SECOND, let me recommend a book  by Sean McDowell and Jonathan Marrow, called Is God Just a Human Invention? And Seventeen Other Questions Raised by the New Atheists.

THIRD,  there is plenty of evidence from archaeology showing the Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted. What about the events in the Bible which claim to be the works of God? Can they be tested by a examination of the historical and archaeological records?  Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.,

FOURTH, sending someone to the world like Christ in the form of a human was too “provincial” according to Feynam, but let us examine Carl Sagan’s same criticism and compare it to his own book CONTACT:

Carl Sagan had to live  in the world that God made with the conscience that God gave him. This created a tension. As you know the movie CONTACT was written by Carl Sagan and it was about Dr. Arroway’s SEARCH FOR EXTRATERRESTRIAL INTELLIGENCE (SETI) program and her desire to make contact with aliens and ask them questions. It is my view that Sagan should have examined more closely  the accuracy of the Bible and it’s fulfilled prophecies from the Old Testament in particular before chasing after aliens from other planets for answers. Sagan himself had written,”Plainly, there’s something within me that’s ready to believe in life after death…If some good evidence for life after death was announced, I’d be eager to examine it; but it would have to be real scientific data, not mere antedote”(pp 203-204, The DemonHaunted World, 1995).

Sagan said he had taken a look at Old Testament prophecy and it did not impress him because it was too vague. He had taken a look at Christ’s life in the gospels, but said it was unrealistic for God to send a man to communicate for God. Instead, Sagan suggested that God could have written a mathematical formula in the Bible or put a cross in the sky. However, what happens at the conclusion of the movie CONTACT?  This is Sagan’s last message to the world in the form of the movie that appeared shortly after his death. Dr Arroway (Jodie Foster) who is a young atheistic scientist who meets with an alien and this alien takes the form of Dr. Arroway’s father. The alien tells her that they thought this would make it easier for her. In fact, he meets her on a beach that resembles a beach that she grew up near so she would also be comfortable with the surroundings. Carl Sagan when writing this script chose to put the alien in human form so Dr. Arroway could relate to the alien. Christ chose to take our form and come into our world too and still many make up excuses for not believing.

Lastly, Carl Sagan could not rid himself of the “mannishness of man.” Those who have read Francis Schaeffer’s many books know exactly what I am talking about. We are made in God’s image and we are living in God’s world. Therefore, we can not totally suppress the objective truths of our unique humanity. In my letter of Jan 10, 1996 to Dr. Sagan, I really camped out on this point a long time because I had read Sagan’s  book SHADOWS OF FORGOTTON ANCESTORS  and in it  Sagan attempts to  totally debunk the idea that we are any way special. However, what does Dr. Sagan have Dr. Arroway say at the end of the movie CONTACT when she is testifying before Congress about the alien that  communicated with her? See if you can pick out the one illogical word in her statement: “I was given a vision how tiny, insignificant, rare and precious we all are. We belong to something that is greater than ourselves and none of us are alone.”

Dr Sagan deep down knows that we are special so he could not avoid putting the word “precious” in there. Francis Schaeffer said unbelievers are put in a place of tension when they have to live in the world that God has made because deep down they know they are special because God has put that knowledge in their hearts.We are not the result of survival of the fittest and headed back to the dirt forevermore. This is what Schaeffer calls “taking the roof off” of the unbeliever’s worldview and showing the inconsistency that exists.

In several of my letters to Sagan I quoted this passage below:

Romans 1:17-22 (Amplified Bible)

17For in the Gospel a righteousness which God ascribes is revealed, both springing from faith and leading to faith [disclosed through the way of faith that arouses to more faith]. As it is written, The man who through faith is just and upright shall live and shall live by faith.(A)

18For God’s [holy] wrath and indignation are revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who in their wickedness repress and hinder the truth and make it inoperative.

19For that which is known about God is evident to them and made plain in their inner consciousness, because God [Himself] has shown it to them.

20For ever since the creation of the world His invisible nature and attributes, that is, His eternal power and divinity, have been made intelligible and clearly discernible in and through the things that have been made (His handiworks). So [men] are without excuse [altogether without any defense or justification],(B)

21Because when they knew and recognized Him as God, they did not honor and glorify Him as God or give Him thanks. But instead they became futile and [a]godless in their thinking [with vain imaginings, foolish reasoning, and stupid speculations] and their senseless minds were darkened.

22Claiming to be wise, they became fools [professing to be smart, they made simpletons of themselves].

__________________________________________

Can a man  or a woman find lasting meaning without God? Three thousand years ago, Solomon took a look at life “under the sun” in his book of Ecclesiastes. Christian scholar Ravi Zacharias has noted, “The key to understanding the Book of Ecclesiastes is the term ‘under the sun.’ What that literally means is you lock God out of a closed system, and you are left with only this world of time plus chance plus matter.”

Let me show you some inescapable conclusions if you choose to live without God in the picture. Solomon came to these same conclusions when he looked at life “under the sun.”

  1. Death is the great equalizer (Eccl 3:20, “All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return.”)
  2. Chance and time have determined the past, and they will determine the future.  (Ecclesiastes 9:11-13 “I have seen something else under the sun:  The race is not to the swift
    or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant  or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.  Moreover, no one knows when their hour will come: As fish are caught in a cruel net, or birds are taken in a snare, so people are trapped by evil times  that fall unexpectedly upon them.”)
  3. Power reigns in this life, and the scales are not balanced(Eccl 4:1; “Again I looked and saw all the oppression that was taking place under the sun: I saw the tears of the oppressed—
    and they have no comforter; power was on the side of their oppressors—  and they have no comforter.” 7:15 “In this meaningless life of mine I have seen both of these: the righteous perishing in their righteousness,  and the wicked living long in their wickedness. ).
  4. Nothing in life gives true satisfaction without God including knowledge (1:16-18), ladies and liquor (2:1-3, 8, 10, 11), and great building projects (2:4-6, 18-20).
  5. There is no ultimate lasting meaning in life. (1:2)

By the way, the final chapter of Ecclesiastes finishes with Solomon emphasizing that serving God is the only proper response of man. Solomon looks above the sun and brings God back into the picture in the final chapter of the book in Ecclesiastes 12:13-14:

13 Now all has been heard;
here is the conclusion of the matter:
Fear God and keep his commandments,
for this is the whole duty of man.

 14 For God will bring every deed into judgment,
including every hidden thing,
whether it is good or evil

_______________

The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

In 1978 I heard the song “Dust in the Wind” by Kansas when it rose to #6 on the charts. That song told me that Kerry Livgren the writer of that song and a member of Kansas had come to the same conclusion that Solomon had and that “all was meaningless.” I remember mentioning to my friends at church that we may soon see some members of Kansas become Christians because their search for the meaning of life had obviously come up empty even though they had risen from being an unknown band to the top of the music business and had all the wealth and fame that came with that.

Livgren wrote:

“All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

Both Kerry Livgren and Dave Hope of Kansas became Christians eventually. Kerry Livgren first tried Eastern Religions and Dave Hope had to come out of a heavy drug addiction. I was shocked and elated to see their personal testimony on The 700 Club in 1981 and that same  interview can be seen on youtube today. Livgren lives in Topeka, Kansas today where he teaches “Diggers,” a Sunday school class at Topeka Bible Church. Hope is the head of Worship, Evangelism and Outreach at Immanuel Anglican Church in Destin, Florida.

You can hear Kerry Livgren’s story from this youtube link:

(part 1 ten minutes)

(part 2 ten minutes)

Kansas – Dust In The Wind

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RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 136 Robert Coleman Richardson, physicist, Cornell, “I do not believe in an anthropomorphic GOD, somebody that’s a MAN and somehow or other made things”

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On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

I have attempted to respond to all of Dr. Kroto’s friends arguments and I have posted my responses one per week for over a year now. Here are some of my earlier posts:

Arif AhmedHaroon Ahmed,  Jim Al-Khalili, Louise Antony, Sir David AttenboroughMark BalaguerMahzarin Banaji Horace Barlow, Michael BateSir Patrick BatesonSimon Blackburn, Colin Blakemore, Ned BlockPascal BoyerSean Carroll, Patricia ChurchlandPaul Churchland, Aaron CiechanoverNoam Chomsky, Brian CoxPartha Dasgupta,  Alan Dershowitz, Jared DiamondFrank DrakeHubert Dreyfus, John DunnAlan Dundes, Christian de Duve, Ken EdwardsBart Ehrman, Mark ElvinRichard Ernst, Stephan Feuchtwang, Sir Raymond FirthRobert FoleyDavid Friend,  Riccardo GiacconiIvar Giaever , Roy GlauberRebecca Goldstein, A.C.GraylingDavid J. Gross,  Brian Greene, Susan Greenfield, Stephen Jay GouldStephen F Gudeman,  Alan Guth, Jonathan Haidt, Chris Hann,  Theodor W. Hänsch, Brian Harrison,  Stephen HawkingHermann Hauser, Peter HiggsRobert HindeRoald Hoffmann,  Bruce HoodGerard ‘t HooftCaroline HumphreyNicholas Humphrey,  Herbert Huppert,  Sir Andrew Fielding HuxleyLisa Jardine, Gareth Stedman Jones, Steve JonesShelly KaganMichio Kaku,  Stuart KauffmanChristof Koch, Masatoshi Koshiba,  Lawrence KraussHarry Kroto, George Lakoff,  Rodolfo Llinas, Seth Lloyd,  Elizabeth Loftus,  Alan Macfarlane,  Rudolph A. Marcus, Colin McGinnDan McKenzie,  Michael MannPeter MillicanMarvin MinskyLeonard Mlodinow,  P.Z.Myers,   Yujin NagasawaAlva NoeDouglas Osheroff, David Parkin,  Jonathan Parry, Roger Penrose,  Saul Perlmutter, Max PerutzHerman Philipse,  Carolyn PorcoRobert M. PriceVS RamachandranLisa RandallLord Martin ReesColin RenfrewAlison Richard,  C.J. van Rijsbergen,  Oliver Sacks, John SearleMarcus du SautoySimon SchafferJ. L. Schellenberg,   Lee Silver Peter Singer,  Walter Sinnott-ArmstrongQuentin SkinnerRonald de Sousa, Victor StengerJohn SulstonBarry Supple,   Leonard Susskind, Raymond TallisMax Tegmark, Michael Tooley,  Neil deGrasse Tyson,  Martinus J. G. Veltman, Craig Venter.Alexander Vilenkin, Sir John Walker, James D. WatsonFrank WilczekSteven Weinberg, and  Lewis Wolpert,

Robert Coleman Richardson

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Robert Coleman Richardson
Robert Coleman Richardson.jpg
Born June 26, 1937
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Died February 19, 2013 (aged 75)
Ithaca, New York, U.S.
Residence United States
Nationality United States
Fields Physics
Institutions Cornell University
Alma mater Virginia Tech (B.S., M.S.)
Duke University (Ph.D.)
Doctoral advisor Horst Meyer
Known for Discovering superfluidity in helium-3
Notable awards Oliver E. Buckley Condensed Matter Prize (1970)
Nobel Prize in Physics (1996)

Robert Coleman Richardson (June 26, 1937 – February 19, 2013)[1] was an American experimental physicist whose area of research included sub-millikelvin temperature studies of helium-3. Richardson, along with David Lee, as senior researchers, and then graduate student Douglas Osheroff, shared the 1996 Nobel Prize in Physics for their 1972 discovery of the property of superfluidity in helium-3 atoms in the Cornell University Laboratory of Atomic and Solid State Physics.[2][3][4]

Richardson was born in Washington D.C. He went to high school at Washington-Lee in Arlington, Virginia. He later described Washington-Lee’s biology and physics courses as “very old-fashioned” for the time. “The idea of ‘advanced placement’ had not yet been invented,” he wrote in his Nobel Prize autobiography. He took his first calculus course when he was a sophomore in college.[5]

Richardson attended Virginia Tech and received a B.S. in 1958 and a M.S. in 1960. He received his PhD from Duke University in 1965.

At the time of his death, he was the Floyd Newman Professor of Physics at Cornell University, although he no longer operated a laboratory. From 1998 to 2007 he served as Cornell’s vice provost for research, and from 2007 to 2009 was senior science adviser to the president and provost. His past experimental work focused on using Nuclear Magnetic Resonance to study the quantum properties of liquids and solids at extremely low temperatures.

Richardson was an Eagle Scout, and mentioned the Scouting activities of his youth in the biography he submitted to the Nobel Foundation at the time of his award.[1] Richardson was an atheist.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jump up to:a b Biography on the Nobel Foundation website
  2. Jump up^ Osheroff, DD; RC Richardson; DM Lee (1972). “Evidence for a New Phase of Solid He3”. Physical Review Letters. 28 (14): 885–888. Bibcode:1972PhRvL..28..885O. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.28.885.
  3. Jump up^ Osheroff, DD; WJ Gully; RC Richardson; DM Lee (1972). “New Magnetic Phenomena in Liquid He3 below 3mK”. Physical Review Letters. 29 (14): 920–923. Bibcode:1972PhRvL..29..920O. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.29.920.
  4. Jump up^ “The Nobel Prize in Physics 1996”. The Nobel Prize in Physics. Nobel Foundation. 2007. Retrieved 2007-08-05.
  5. Jump up^ Chang, Kenneth. (2013, February 22). Robert C. Richardson, 75, Laureate in Physics, Dies. The New York Times, p B14.
  6. Jump up^ J. (2011). 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1). Retrieved September 04, 2016, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s47ArcQL-XQBut, I do not believe in an anthropomorphic god…”

External links[edit]

_

In  the first video below in the 2nd clip in this series are his words and  my response is below them. 

50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2)

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

__

Robert Coleman Richardson Quote: 

I do not believe in an anthropomorphic GOD, somebody that’s a MAN and somehow or other made things. And to answer the question about the afterlife. All I can say is that it would be great, but I have no conviction that there is an afterlife. 

Let me start off by saying that I don’t believe an anthropomorphic God, and the vast majority of Christians don’t hold this view either while the Mormons do. I read a great article on this in the Christian Research Institute article,Recognizing and Interpreting Anthropomorphic Language,” by  Ron Rhodes. 

John Piippo seemed to agree with me on this point, and in his article 50 Renowned Academics (Atheists) Speaking About God – A Review, (August 05, 2011) he noted:

  1. Robert Coleman Richardson (physics)
  1. “I do not believe in an anthropomorphic “God,” somebody that’s a “man” and somehow or other made things.” Well I don’t believe in an “anthropomorphic God” either. All Coleman gives us is a personal credo which even theists can affirm. So this little confessional adds no weight to the discussion.

My former pastor Adrian Rogers talks about who Jesus actually was in this short article below:

Who Is This Man Called Jesus?

Many believe Christ to be a savior, but not THE Savior. These skeptics put Jesus in the same class with Mohammed, Buddha, Confucius, Ghandi, and others. But Jesus was unique. He was God in human flesh — 100% God and 100% man.

John 14:6 tells us that Jesus is the only way to heaven. There is no other way. You must trust that He is Lord and surrender your life to Him completely. Is that true with you? Have you surrendered yourself completely to the Savior Jesus and made Him Lord of your life?

I have been asked, “Do you believe that a Jew without Jesus is lost?” I say, “I believe that one of my own dear children is lost without Jesus Christ.” It isn’t a matter of whether a person is a Jew or a Gentile. It’s not a matter of race, or face, or place — it’s a matter of grace. People are saved or lost according to what they do with the Son of God.

I’m going to tell you how you can know for sure that Jesus Christ is Who He said He is. Jesus is either a liar, a lunatic, or Lord. You must decide.

Jesus walked upon this earth. He was born and He died. How do we know this? We know it for three reasons.

The Personal Witness Of The Saints
Acts 10:39-41 says, “And we are witnesses of all things which He did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree: Him God raised up the third day, and showed Him openly; not to all the people, but unto witnesses chosen before of God, even to us, who did eat and drink with Him after He rose from the dead.”

Over 500 people saw Jesus after His death and most of these died because of their belief. Let me say, a man may live for a lie, but would he die for one?

The Prophetic Witness Of The Scriptures
Acts 10:43 says, “To Him give all the prophets witness, that through His name whosoever believeth in Him shall receive remission of sins.” When the writer says “all the prophets,” he is talking about the prophets from Genesis to Malachi (remember, the New Testament hadn’t been written yet).

In Genesis 3, we read about the One who will bruise the head of the serpent. In Genesis 12, He is going to come from the seed of Abraham. In Genesis 22, we read about the sacrifice of Isaac on the very mountain where Jesus was later crucified! The entire book of Leviticus is filled with pictures of blood-atoning sacrifices for sin. You’ll read about the prophetic crucifixion of Jesus in Psalm 22. In Micah 5:2, it is told clearly that Jesus will be born in Bethlehem.

I could go on and on, but the bottom line is: there is but one plan of salvation in all the Bible and that is through the blood-atoning sacrifice of the God-Man, Jesus Christ.


The Powerful Witness Of The Spirit

The Holy Spirit takes the Word of God and says, “Amen. It is written. It is truth.” I thank God that I don’t have to try and talk you into believing Jesus. If there’s anything I can talk you into, there’s someone who can talk you right out of it!

1 John 5:9-11 says, “If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which He hath testified of His Son. He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.”

I want you to have a “know-so” salvation, not a “hope-so.” Do you know that if you died tonight that you would go to heaven? Notice I didn’t say, “Do you hope that if you died tonight that you would go to heaven.” Repent and believe today so you can have a “know-so” salvation!

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Many people question the fact that God would send Jesus to come see us. Richard Feynam said sending someone to the world like Christ in the form of a human was too “provincial,” but let us examine Carl Sagan’s same criticism and compare it to what actually happened in Sagan’s film CONTACT: 

Carl Sagan had to live  in the world that God made with the conscience that God gave him. This created a tension. As you know the movie CONTACT was written by Carl Sagan and it was about Dr. Arroway’s SEARCH FOR EXTRATERRESTRIAL INTELLIGENCE (SETI) program and her desire to make contact with aliens and ask them questions. It is my view that Sagan should have examined more closely  the accuracy of the Bible and it’s fulfilled prophecies from the Old Testament in particular before chasing after aliens from other planets for answers. Sagan himself had written,”Plainly, there’s something within me that’s ready to believe in life after death…If some good evidence for life after death was announced, I’d be eager to examine it; but it would have to be real scientific data, not mere antedote”(pp 203-204, The DemonHaunted World, 1995).

Sagan said he had taken a look at Old Testament prophecy and it did not impress him because it was too vague. He had taken a look at Christ’s life in the gospels, but said it was unrealistic for God to send a man to communicate for God. Instead, Sagan suggested that God could have written a mathematical formula in the Bible or put a cross in the sky. However, what happens at the conclusion of the movie CONTACT?  This is Sagan’s last message to the world in the form of the movie that appeared shortly after his death. Dr Arroway (Jodie Foster) who is a young atheistic scientist who meets with an alien and this alien takes the form of Dr. Arroway’s father. The alien tells her that they thought this would make it easier for her. In fact, he meets her on a beach that resembles a beach that she grew up near so she would also be comfortable with the surroundings. Carl Sagan when writing this script chose to put the alien in human form so Dr. Arroway could relate to the alien. Christ chose to take our form and come into our world too and still many make up excuses for not believing.

Lastly, Carl Sagan could not rid himself of the “mannishness of man.” Those who have read Francis Schaeffer’s many books know exactly what I am talking about. We are made in God’s image and we are living in God’s world. Therefore, we can not totally suppress the objective truths of our unique humanity. In my letter of Jan 10, 1996 to Dr. Sagan, I really camped out on this point a long time because I had read Sagan’s  book SHADOWS OF FORGOTTON ANCESTORS  and in it  Sagan attempts to  totally debunk the idea that we are any way special. However, what does Dr. Sagan have Dr. Arroway say at the end of the movie CONTACT when she is testifying before Congress about the alien that  communicated with her? See if you can pick out the one illogical word in her statement: “I was given a vision how tiny, insignificant, rare and precious we all are. We belong to something that is greater than ourselves and none of us are alone.”

Dr Sagan deep down knows that we are special so he could not avoid putting the word “precious” in there. Francis Schaeffer said unbelievers are put in a place of tension when they have to live in the world that God has made because deep down they know they are special because God has put that knowledge in their hearts.We are not the result of survival of the fittest and headed back to the dirt forevermore. This is what Schaeffer calls “taking the roof off” of the unbeliever’s worldview and showing the inconsistency that exists.

In several of my letters to Sagan I quoted this passage below:

Romans 1:17-22 (Amplified Bible)

17For in the Gospel a righteousness which God ascribes is revealed, both springing from faith and leading to faith [disclosed through the way of faith that arouses to more faith]. As it is written, The man who through faith is just and upright shall live and shall live by faith.(A)

18For God’s [holy] wrath and indignation are revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who in their wickedness repress and hinder the truth and make it inoperative.

19For that which is known about God is evident to them and made plain in their inner consciousness, because God [Himself] has shown it to them.

20For ever since the creation of the world His invisible nature and attributes, that is, His eternal power and divinity, have been made intelligible and clearly discernible in and through the things that have been made (His handiworks). So [men] are without excuse [altogether without any defense or justification],(B)

21Because when they knew and recognized Him as God, they did not honor and glorify Him as God or give Him thanks. But instead they became futile and [a]godless in their thinking [with vain imaginings, foolish reasoning, and stupid speculations] and their senseless minds were darkened.

22Claiming to be wise, they became fools [professing to be smart, they made simpletons of themselves].

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Can a man  or a woman find lasting meaning without God? Three thousand years ago, Solomon took a look at life “under the sun” in his book of Ecclesiastes. Christian scholar Ravi Zacharias has noted, “The key to understanding the Book of Ecclesiastes is the term ‘under the sun.’ What that literally means is you lock God out of a closed system, and you are left with only this world of time plus chance plus matter.”

Let me show you some inescapable conclusions if you choose to live without God in the picture. Solomon came to these same conclusions when he looked at life “under the sun.”

  1. Death is the great equalizer (Eccl 3:20, “All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return.”)
  2. Chance and time have determined the past, and they will determine the future.  (Ecclesiastes 9:11-13 “I have seen something else under the sun:  The race is not to the swift
    or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant  or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.  Moreover, no one knows when their hour will come: As fish are caught in a cruel net, or birds are taken in a snare, so people are trapped by evil times  that fall unexpectedly upon them.”)
  3. Power reigns in this life, and the scales are not balanced(Eccl 4:1; “Again I looked and saw all the oppression that was taking place under the sun: I saw the tears of the oppressed—
    and they have no comforter; power was on the side of their oppressors—  and they have no comforter.” 7:15 “In this meaningless life of mine I have seen both of these: the righteous perishing in their righteousness,  and the wicked living long in their wickedness. ).
  4. Nothing in life gives true satisfaction without God including knowledge (1:16-18), ladies and liquor (2:1-3, 8, 10, 11), and great building projects (2:4-6, 18-20).
  5. There is no ultimate lasting meaning in life. (1:2)

By the way, the final chapter of Ecclesiastes finishes with Solomon emphasizing that serving God is the only proper response of man. Solomon looks above the sun and brings God back into the picture in the final chapter of the book in Ecclesiastes 12:13-14:

13 Now all has been heard;
here is the conclusion of the matter:
Fear God and keep his commandments,
for this is the whole duty of man.

 14 For God will bring every deed into judgment,
including every hidden thing,
whether it is good or evil

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The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

In 1978 I heard the song “Dust in the Wind” by Kansas when it rose to #6 on the charts. That song told me that Kerry Livgren the writer of that song and a member of Kansas had come to the same conclusion that Solomon had and that “all was meaningless.” I remember mentioning to my friends at church that we may soon see some members of Kansas become Christians because their search for the meaning of life had obviously come up empty even though they had risen from being an unknown band to the top of the music business and had all the wealth and fame that came with that.

Livgren wrote:

“All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

Both Kerry Livgren and Dave Hope of Kansas became Christians eventually. Kerry Livgren first tried Eastern Religions and Dave Hope had to come out of a heavy drug addiction. I was shocked and elated to see their personal testimony on The 700 Club in 1981 and that same  interview can be seen on youtube today. Livgren lives in Topeka, Kansas today where he teaches “Diggers,” a Sunday school class at Topeka Bible Church. Hope is the head of Worship, Evangelism and Outreach at Immanuel Anglican Church in Destin, Florida.

You can hear Kerry Livgren’s story from this youtube link:

(part 1 ten minutes)

(part 2 ten minutes)

Kansas – Dust In The Wind

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Adrian Rogers, “IF A MAN HAS COMMITTED A CAPITAL CRIME AND HE KNOWS THAT HE IS GOING TO DIE FOR THAT CRIME, IT MAY BRING HIM TO REPENTANCE” Exhibit #1 Kenneth D. WIlliams of Grady Arkansas

 

Adrian Rogers: Does a Loving God Believe in Capital Punishment? [#2183] (Audio)

Kenneth D. Williams was executed at 11:05 pm in Grady, Arkansas on April 27, 2017. In this post I want to take a short look at Adrian Rogers’ sermon THE BIBLE AND CAPITAL PUNISHMENT and then look at the life of Kenneth D. Williams and a close look at the peace that passeth all understanding that is available to anyone who puts their faith in Christ.

Image result for kenneth d. williams

(Kenneth D. Williams in 2017 pictured below)

Image result for kenneth d. williams

Adrian Rogers on Capital Punishment

Image result for young adrian rogers

There are four reasons why capital punishment is necessary.

FIRST, to obey God. (Genesis 9:6).

SECOND, to protect society. Romans 12:9 says, “Love is to be sincere and active [the real thing—without guile and hypocrisy]. Hate what is evil [detest all ungodliness, do not tolerate wickedness]; hold on tightly to what is good.” Much today is called LOVE but has no resemblance to TRUE LOVE. Because God loves us, He doesn’t want us raped or murdered and He has put something in place to stop it. Softness to the criminal is cruelty to the community.

THIRD, for the good of the criminals.

The death penalty should also be practiced for the welfare of the criminals….When the principle of restraint is taken away, you have not served the criminal. You have been cruel to him because he does not realize the judgment that should come to him. The death sentence in a sense is a kindness to him because it reminds him that there is a God of justice that he must face.

IF A MAN HAS COMMITTED A CAPITAL CRIME AND HE KNOWS THAT HE IS GOING TO DIE FOR THAT CRIME, IT MAY BRING HIM TO REPENTANCE.

Many of those who are executed go into the chamber saying that they have repented and have accepted Christ as their personal savior. They know that in a short while they are going to face almighty God.

The Bible says that the government’s authority is there for good and there should be terror in the hearts and minds of evil doers. If we transgress, we ought to be afraid.

Romans 13:3, “For [civil] authorities are not a source of fear for [people of] good behavior, but for [those who do] evil.”

FOURTH, another reason for the death penalty is because of the justice of God. God is a holy God. There is sin and retribution.

The death of Jesus was capital punishment. Our sin deserved death, and He took our death for us. Jesus actually bore the wrath of God against sin on the cross.

_

Let us see if what Adrian Rogers said has any validity in  the experience here in Arkansas. 

I googled the name Kenneth D. Williams and found this article,Arkansas death row inmate says he killed a fourth person,” June 15, 2005:

An inmate sentenced to death for a killing committed during a 1999 escape from a sentence for an earlier slaying has confessed to yet another killing in a letter to the editor of the Pine Bluff Commercial.

Along with a man killed in a traffic accident in Missouri during inmate Kenneth D. Williams’ 1999 escape, the slaying to which he has now confessed would make him responsible for the deaths of four people.

Williams, 26, says in a 512-page letter to the newspaper that he shot and killed Jerrell Jenkins, 36, of Pine Bluff on Dec. 13, 1998, the same day that he fatally shot Dominique Hurd, a cheerleader at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. Police had listed Jenkins’ death as unsolved.

Image result for dominique hurd arkansas

“I take full responsibility for my actions and whatever consequences my peers see fit,” Williams wrote.

Williams said he was a born-again Christian and wanted to confess his sins.

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On April 27, 2017 Kenneth D. Williams was executed and according to the article, KENNETH WILLIAMS EXECUTED THURSDAY AT CUMMINS,” b

Death row inmate Kenneth Williams of Pine Bluff was executed Thursday night at the Cummins Unit for the 1999 murder of Grady resident Cecil Boren.

Williams, 38, was pronounced dead at 11:05 p.m.

Williams was responsible for the deaths of four people in total and was sentenced to life in prison after he kidnapped and fatally shot 19-year-old University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff student Dominique Hurd in 1998. He was sentenced to death after escaping the Department of Correction’s Cummins Unit in 1999 and murdering Boren, 57, a former assistant warden at the unit.

Williams was captured only after causing a fatal auto collision with water-delivery driver Michael Greenwood, 24, in southern Missouri. In 2005 letter to the Commercial, Williams admitted to murdering Jerrell Jenkins, 36, in Pine Bluff on the same day he killed Hurd.

Greenwood’s widow and daughter bought plane tickets for Williams’ daughter and granddaughter to visit the prison before his scheduled execution.

According to an email distributed to the news media Thursday, Williams contacted freelance journalist Deborah Robinson on Thursday afternoon and provided an 1,808-word statement titled “Last Words.”

Williams credited the mother of Hurd and the daughter of Michael Greenwood with planting the seed so he could become a born-again Christian.

“I have been forever changed, forever grateful because of ‘Extreme Grace Unmerited,’” he wrote. “Amen.”

The Rev. Dewitt Hill, pastor of First Trinity Church of God in Pine Bluff, said he received a letter from Williams on Wednesday. In the letter, Williams wrote that he felt the execution was not going to happen, according to Hill, but if it did he was at peace. Williams wrote that he felt he was able to convert “most of the people on death row to God,” Hill said, adding that Williams had become a “student” of the Bible.

Boren’s niece, Terri Grimes, who attended Williams’ trial for the killing of her uncle, said she saw little remorse in him during that time.

“When I looked into his eyes during the trial, they were empty like he didn’t have a soul,” she told the Warren Eagle-Democrat. When I looked at them (his eyes) during the clemency hearings, they looked different.”

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Lastly I read today this article,Among the last words from Kenneth Williams: ‘Finger Lickin’ Good Fried Chicken’.” Posted By on Thu, Apr 27, 2017 at 4:48 PM: 

EXTREME GRACE UNMERITED! (Final Communication)

On the eve of my scheduled April 27th execution, the Light burned brighter than I’ve ever Known it to! Only once before did it blind me so. It first happened in 1999. I was the twenty year old defendant in a capital murder case where the death penalty was rolled out against me. Mrs. Williams (No relation to me), the mother of the late 19-year-old Dominique Hurd, whom I senselessly murdered, took the stand having suffered great loss, and she shared these words, “I forgive Kenneth Williams. My daughter, Dominique ‘Nikki’ Hurd, was a forgiven person.” She said, ”I do not wish for him to be put to death. His death won’t bring my daughter back.” She went on to say, ”I pray that before Kenneth Williams leaves this world he will give his heart to Jesus.” On the other hand, yet not without understanding, the father of Dominique was full of indignation. He wanted me to feel his pain. Pain was my Language. It was my thing. But what I couldn’t comprehend; what could not be reconciled in my mind, was this woman’s pure act of grace, Love, mercy, and forgiveness. For someone who had taken away her child from her in the worst of ways.

The light shined into the darkness and the darkness did not comprehend it. John 1:5

Image result for dominique hurd arkansas Kayla Greenwood

  • LIFELONG BOND: Kayla Greenwood (right) and Jasmine Johnson at Arkansas prison Wednesday for Johnson’s meeting with her father, Death Row inmate Kenneth Williams.

That marvelous light that shined forth that day out of Mrs. Williams acted as a planted seed into the soil of my life. Years later it would yield something special and God-bred. And when I could not think such a greater act of kindness, Love, and forgiveness could be expressed, I stood corrected. Thanks to Kayla Greenwood. She’s the daughter of the late Michael Greenwood, a man whose death I caused. His daughter, Kayla Greenwood, was just a child when her father was taken in a car wreck caused by me after I escaped prison. I was serving a life without sentence for killing Dominique. After 17 years of imprisonment and being on death row for also killing Cecil Boren during my escape, away from my own now 21-year-old daughter and never having seen before granddaughter, my death sentence finally had an April 27th date. A wish that burned within me was to see again my child and grandchild, possibly for the final time; first and last time. It had been over 17 years since I last saw my four-year-old child.

PRISON MEETING: Kenneth Williams with his daughter Jasmine Johnson and granddaughter. - DEATH PENALTY ACTION/TWITTER

  • DEATH PENALTY ACTION/TWITTER
  • PRISON MEETING: Kenneth Williams with his daughter Jasmine Johnson and granddaughter

The word got out about my desire. The last person(s) I would have ever thought it possible answered my call. Kayla Greenwood, the daughter of the late Michael Greenwood, and her family reached out to prison officials. Kayla said, “I would like to speak with him on good terms and put closure between us and let him know my family and I forgive him. I would also like to pay for his daughter and granddaughter to go see him and want to figure out how I can get in contact with her to make it happen. I am not looking for anything else but closure and giving his daughter and granddaughter a chance I don’t get because I know how important it is.” Not only had this family forgiven me, which would have been going the extra mile, but within a short period of time they paid and arranged for my baby and grand babe to come to Arkansas from the West Coast to visit with me, which included picking them up from the airport and driving them to the prison over 40 miles away. We had the most amazing and heart-felt visit that left a former cold-blooded killer in tears of gratitude. Had officials permitted it, Kayla and I would have met with no objections from me. My heart has never known a greater deal of respect and admiration for another human being than for Kayla and her family, and Mrs. Williams, the mother of Dominique Hurd. I will also include my daughter Jasmine and son Marqevion for forgiving me for my abandonment and any shame I may have brought upon them because of my wrongs. If tomorrow be my last day here on earth, then Mrs. Williams’ prayer she made at my trial that I GIVE MY LIFE TO JESUS before I leave this world, would be answered. I have been forever changed, forever grateful because of ”Extreme Grace Unmerited.” Amen.

Min. Kenneth D. Williams
Arkansas Death Row
Death Watch

Adrian Rogers: The Simplicity of Salvation [#2221] (Audio)

The Simplicity of Salvation

Jesus said, “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10). Do you want to know how to be saved? Or want to know how you can tell others how to be saved? Then, let’s look at Romans 10:1-10:

1 Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. 2 For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. 3 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth. 5 For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them. 6 But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? that is, to bring Christ down from above: 7 Or, Who shall descend into the deep? that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead. 8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; 9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

 

The Righteousness That God Rejects
When a person tries to be righteous by keeping the Ten Commandments or by doing good deeds, God rejects that. Why would God do that? Because God is holy and man is sinful at his best. The best that we can do is not enough.

We don’t have what it takes to keep the Ten Commandments in our own strength. If you’re hanging over a fire by a chain of ten links and nine of them are forged steel and one of them is made of paper, how safe are you?

That’s the reason the Bible says if we should keep the whole law and yet offend in one point, we are guilty of all. God demands perfection and we just can’t supply it. Salvation is not a reward for the righteous; it is a gift for the guilty. Salvation is not a goal to be achieved; it is a gift to be received.


The Righteousness That God Reveals

Romans 1:17 says, “For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.” The only righteousness that is acceptable to God is a gift of faith through His Son Jesus Christ.

You believe in who He says He is — the God made flesh who died and rose again for you to be reconciled to God. Then, you repent of your sins and confess Christ as Lord of your life.

If Jesus is not the Lord of your life, then He is not your Savior. Salvation is not a cafeteria line where we say, “Well, I believe I’ll have a little Savior today, but no Lordship. Thank you.” No! Jesus is Lord.

The Righteousness That God Requires
The only righteousness that God will accept is sinless perfection. And that was accomplished through His Son Jesus Christ.

Romans 3:21 says, “This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe.” Romans 10:10 says, “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”

Do you know what it means to believe and confess that Jesus is Lord? It literally means that you agree with God. In this context, it also means that you will tell others about this confession. And that means you will not be ashamed. There are only two ways to be saved: If you live a sinless life (which no one has done, except Jesus) or you ask the Jesus to take the payment of your sin for you (which He did on the cross), and accept His righteousness on your behalf. 2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “For He [God] hath made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.”

Adrian Rogers – Simplicity of Salvation (1 4)

 

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Adrian Rogers: How to Be Saved and Know It [#1726] (Audio)

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RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 127 C.J. van Rijsbergen, Dept of Computing Science, University of Glasgow, “Martin Rees said, ‘I am a non-believing Christian.’ I thought yeah that is exactly quite close to what I am. In other words, I understand and I accept the culture that we have has come out of Christianity, but just because I accept it and go along with it and admire it actually, doesn’t mean to say that I have to also believe in God”  

 

On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

I have attempted to respond to all of Dr. Kroto’s friends arguments and I have posted my responses one per week for over a year now. Here are some of my earlier posts:

Arif Ahmed, Sir David AttenboroughMark Balaguer, Horace Barlow, Michael BatePatricia ChurchlandAaron CiechanoverNoam Chomsky,Alan DershowitzHubert Dreyfus, Bart Ehrman, Stephan FeuchtwangDavid Friend,  Riccardo GiacconiIvar Giaever , Roy GlauberRebecca GoldsteinDavid J. Gross,  Brian Greene, Susan GreenfieldStephen F Gudeman,  Alan Guth, Jonathan HaidtTheodor W. Hänsch, Brian Harrison,  Hermann HauserRoald Hoffmann,  Bruce HoodHerbert Huppert,  Gareth Stedman Jones, Steve JonesShelly KaganMichio Kaku,  Stuart Kauffman,  Lawrence KraussHarry Kroto, George LakoffElizabeth Loftus,  Alan MacfarlanePeter MillicanMarvin MinskyLeonard Mlodinow,  Yujin NagasawaAlva NoeDouglas Osheroff,  Jonathan Parry,  Saul PerlmutterHerman Philipse,  Carolyn PorcoRobert M. PriceLisa RandallLord Martin Rees,  Oliver Sacks, John SearleMarcus du SautoySimon SchafferJ. L. Schellenberg,   Lee Silver Peter Singer,  Walter Sinnott-ArmstrongRonald de Sousa, Victor StengerBarry Supple,   Leonard Susskind, Raymond TallisNeil deGrasse Tyson,  .Alexander Vilenkin, Sir John WalkerFrank WilczekSteven Weinberg, and  Lewis Wolpert,

C. J. van Rijsbergen

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Cornelis Joost van Rijsbergen
C J van Rijsbergen.jpg

C. J. “Keith” van Rijsbergen
Born 1943
Rotterdam
Fields Information Retrieval
Institutions Monash University, University of Glasgow
Alma mater University of Western Australia,University of Cambridge

C. J. “Keith” van Rijsbergen FREng[1] (Cornelis Joost van Rijsbergen) (born 1943) is a professor of computer science and the leader of the Glasgow Information Retrieval Group based at the University of Glasgow. He is one of the founders of modern Information Retrieval and the author of the seminal monograph Information Retrieval and of the textbook The Geometry of Information Retrieval.

He was born in Rotterdam, and educated in the Netherlands, Indonesia, Namibia and Australia. His first degree is in mathematics from the University of Western Australia, and in 1972 he completed a PhD in computer science at the University of Cambridge. He spent three years lecturing in information retrieval and artificial intelligence at Monash University before returning to Cambridge to hold a Royal Society Information Research Fellowship. In 1980 he was appointed to the chair of computer science at University College Dublin; from there he moved in 1986 to Glasgow University. In 2003 he was inducted as a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery. In 2004 he was awarded the Tony Kent Strix award. In 2004 he was appointed a Fellow[2] of the Royal Academy of Engineering[3] In 2006, he was awarded the Gerard Salton Award for Quantum haystacks. Since 2007 he has been Chairman of the Scientific Board of the Information Retrieval Facility.

In  the third video below in the 110th clip in this series are his words and  my response is below them. 

50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2)

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

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Interview of computer scientist Keith van Rijsbergen, pt. 1

Uploaded on Feb 9, 2010

An interview of the computer scientist Keith van Rijsbergen talking about his life and work; one of the pioneers of p

Interview of the computer scientist, Keith van Rijsbergen, pt. 2

Uploaded on Feb 9, 2010

An interview of the computer scientist Keith van Rijsbergen talking about his life and work; one of the pioneers of probabalistic searching. Interviewed by Alan Macfarlane in July 2009. For a higher quality, downlloadable version, with a summary, please see http://www.alanmacfarlane.com

Below is the letter to him and I respond to his quote:

March 13, 2015

Prof. C.J. van Rijsbergen, c/o Dept of Computing Science, University of Glasgow,

Dear Dr. C.J. van Rijsbergen,

I just finished reading the online addition of the book Darwin, Francis ed. 1892. Charles Darwin: his life told in an autobiographical chapter, and in a selected series of his published letters [abridged edition]. London: John Murray. There are several points that Charles Darwin makes in this book that were very wise, honest, logical, shocking and some that were not so wise. The Christian Philosopher Francis Schaeffer once said of Darwin’s writings, “Darwin in his autobiography and in his letters showed that all through his life he never really came to a quietness concerning the possibility that chance really explained the situation of the biological world. You will find there is much material on this [from Darwin] extended over many many years that constantly he was wrestling with this problem.”

I really enjoyed listening to your interview by Alan Macfarlane. Dr. Macfarlane has done so many wonderful in-depth interviews and yours with him was very good too. I noticed that you were educated under Fred Hoyle at Cambridge and that you also were interested in Dostoyevsky at one time.

I have written several times in the past about  Dostoyevsky and have many posts about his works. William Lane Craig in his article, “The Absurdity of Life without God,” wrote:

Another apologetic based on the human predicament may be found in the magnificent novels of the great nineteenth-century Russian writer Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1821–1881). (May I add that I think the obsession of contemporary evangelicals with the writings of authors like C. S. Lewis to the neglect of writers like Dostoyevsky is a great shame? Dostoyevsky is a far, far grander writer.) The problem that tortured Dostoyevsky was the problem of evil: how can a good and loving God exist when the world is filled with so much suffering and evil? Dostoyevsky presented this problem in his works so persuasively, so poignantly, that certain passages of his, notably “The Grand Inquisitor” section from his Brothers Karamazov, are often reprinted in anthologies as classic statements of the problem of evil. As a result, some people are under the impression that Dostoyevsky was himself an atheist and that the viewpoint of the Grand Inquisitor is his own.

Actually, he sought to carry through a two-pronged defense of theism in the face of the problem of evil. Positively, he argued that innocent suffering may perfect character and bring one into a closer relation with God. Negatively, he tried to show that if the existence of God is denied, then one is landed in complete moral relativism, so that no act, regardless how dreadful or heinous, can be condemned by the atheist. To live consistently with such a view of life is unthinkable and impossible. Hence, atheism is destructive of life and ends logically in suicide.

Dostoyevsky’s magnificent novels Crime and Punishment and The Brothers Karamazov powerfully illustrate these themes. In the former a young atheist, convinced of moral relativism, brutally murders an old woman. Though he knows that on his presuppositions he should not feel guilty, nevertheless he is consumed with guilt until he confesses his crime and gives his life to God. The latter novel is the story of four brothers, one of whom murders their father because his atheist brother Ivan had told him that moral absolutes do not exist. Unable to live with the consequences of his own philosophical system, Ivan suffers a mental collapse. The remaining two brothers, one of whom is unjustly accused of the parricide and the other a young Russian orthodox priest, find in what they suffer the perfection of their character and a nearness to God.

Dostoyevsky recognizes that his response to atheism constitutes no positive proof of Christianity. Indeed, he rejects that there could be such. Men demand of Christ that he furnish them “bread and circuses,” but he refuses to do so. The decision to follow Christ must be made in loneliness and anxiety. Each person must face for himself the anguish of a world without God and in the solitude of his own heart give himself to God in faith….Finally, let’s look at the problem of purpose in life. Unable to live in an impersonal universe in which everything is the product of blind chance, atheists sometimes begin to ascribe personality and motives to the physical processes themselves. It is a bizarre way of speaking and represents a leap from the lower to the upper story. For example, the brilliant Russian physicists Zeldovich and Novikov, in contemplating the properties of the universe, ask, why did “Nature” choose to create this sort of universe instead of another? “Nature” has obviously become a sort of God-substitute, filling the role and function of God. Francis Crick halfway through his book The Origin of the Genetic Code begins to spell nature with a capital N and elsewhere speaks of natural selection as being “clever” and as “thinking” of what it will do. Sir Fred Hoyle, the English astronomer, attributes to the universe itself the qualities of God. For Carl Sagan the “Cosmos,” which he always spelled with a capital letter, obviously fills the role of a God-substitute. Though these men profess not to believe in God, they smuggle in a God-substitute through the back door because they cannot bear to live in a universe in which everything is the chance result of impersonal forces…Modern man no longer has any right to that support, since he rejects God. But in order to live purposefully, he makes a leap of faith to affirm a reason for living. 

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Here are a couple of more quotes from  -Sir Fred Hoyle, atheist, and a prominent astrophysicist of the 20th century.

“If you stir up simple nonorganic molecules like water, ammonia, methane, carbon dioxide and hydrogen cyanide with almost any form of intense energy … some of the molecules reassemble themselves into amino acids … demonstrated … byStanley Miller and Harold Urey. The … building blocks of proteins can therefore be produced by natural means. But this is far from proving that life could have evolved in this way. No one has shown that the correct arrangements of amino acids, like the orderings in enzymes, can be produced by this method. …. A junkyard contains all the bits and pieces of a Boeing 747, dismembered and in disarray. A whirlwind happens to blow through the yard. What is the chance that after its passage a fully assembled 747, ready to fly, will be found standing there? So small as to be negligible, even if a tornado were to blow through enough junkyards to fill the whole Universe.” (Hoyle, F., “The Intelligent Universe,” Michael Joseph: London, 1983, pp.18-19).

“If one proceeds directly…in this matter, without being deflected by a fear of incurring the wrath of scientific opinion, one arrives at the conclusion that biomaterialists (life forms) with their amazing measure of order must be the outcome of intelligent design.”

Recently I noticed this comment by you:

Martin Rees said, “I am a non-believing Christian.” I thought yeah that is exactly quite close to what I am. In other words, I understand and I accept the culture that we have has come out of Christianity, but just because I accept it and go along with it and admire it actually, doesn’t mean to say that I have to also believe in God.  

Just like Charles Darwin you have come out this Christian culture and this exact quote made me think of you when I read the book Charles Darwin: his life told in an autobiographical chapter, and in a selected series of his published letters because of what Darwin said on this same issue of intelligent design. I am going to quote some of Charles Darwin’s own words and then include the comments of Francis Schaeffer on those words. I have also enclosed a CD with two messages from Adrian Rogers and Bill Elliff concerning Darwinism.

Darwin, C. R. to Doedes, N. D.2 Apr 1873

“It is impossible to answer your question briefly; and I am not sure that I could do so, even if I wrote at some length. But I may say that the impossibility of conceiving that this grand and wondrous universe, with our conscious selves, arose through chance, seems to me the chief argument for the existence of God; but whether this is an argument of real value, I have never been able to decide…Nor can I overlook the difficulty from the immense amount of suffering through the world. I am aware that if we admit a First Cause, the mind still craves to know whence it came, and how it arose.”

Francis Schaeffer noted:

What he is saying is if you say there is a first cause, then the mind says, “Where did this come from?” I think this is a bit old fashioned, with some of the modern thinkers, this would not have carry as much weight today as it did when Darwin expressed it. Jean Paul Sartre said it as well as anyone could possibly say it. The philosophic problem is that something is there and not nothing being there. No one has the luxury of beginning with nothing. Nobody I have ever read has put forth that everything came from nothing. I have never met such a person in all my reading,or all my discussion. If you are going to begin with nothing being there, it has to be nothing nothing, and it can’t be something nothing. When someone says they believe nothing is there, in reality they have already built in something there. The only question is do you begin with an impersonal something or a personal something. All human thought is shut up to these two possibilities. Either you begin with an impersonal and then have Darwin’s own dilemma which impersonal plus chance, now he didn’t bring in the amount of time that modern man would though. Modern man has brought in huge amounts of time into the equation as though that would make a difference because I have said many times that time can’t make a qualitative difference but only a quantitative difference. The dilemma is it is either God or chance. Now you find this intriguing thing in Darwin’s own situation, he can’t understand how chance could have produced these two great factors of the universe and its form and the mannishness of man.

From Charles Darwin, Autobiography (1876), in The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, ed. Francis Darwin, vol. 1 (London: John Murray, 1888), pp. 307 to 313.

“Another source of conviction in the existence of God, connected with the reason and not with the feelings, impresses me as having much more weight. This follows from the extreme difficulty or rather impossibility of conceiving this immense and wonderful universe, including man with his capacity of looking far backwards and far into futurity, as the result of blind chance or necessity. When thus reflecting, I feel compelled to look to a First Cause having an intelligent mind in some degree analogous to that of man; and I deserve to be called a Theist. This conclusion was strong in my mind about the time, as far as I can remember, when I wrote the Origin of Species, and it is since that time that it has very gradually, with many fluctuations, become weaker. But then arises the doubt…”

Francis Schaeffer commented:

On the basis of his reason he has to say there must be an intelligent mind, someone analogous to man. You couldn’t describe the God of the Bible better. That is man is made in God’s image  and therefore, you know a great deal about God when you know something about man. What he is really saying here is that everything in my experience tells me it must be so, and my mind demands it is so. Not just these feelings he talked about earlier but his MIND demands it is so, but now how does he counter this? How does he escape this? Here is how he does it!!!

Charles Darwin went on to observe:  —can the mind of man, which has, as I fully believe, been developed from a mind as low as that possessed by the lowest animals, be trusted when it draws such grand conclusions?”

Francis Schaeffer asserted:

So he says my mind can only come to one conclusion, and that is there is a mind behind it all. However, the doubt comes because his mind has come from the lowest form of earthworm, so how can I trust my mind. But this is a joker isn’t it?  Then how can you trust his mind to support such a theory as this? He proved too much. The fact that Darwin found it necessary to take such an escape shows the tremendous weight of Romans 1, that the only escape he can make is to say how can I trust my mind when I come from the lowest animal the earthworm? Obviously think of the grandeur of his concept, I don’t think it is true, but the grandeur of his concept, so what you find is that Darwin is presenting something here that is wrong I feel, but it is not nothing. It is a tremendously grand concept that he has put forward. So he is accepting the dictates of his mind to put forth a grand concept which he later can’t accept in this basic area with his reason, but he rejects what he could accept with his reason on this escape. It really doesn’t make sense. This is a tremendous demonstration of the weakness of his own position.

Darwin also noted, “I cannot pretend to throw the least light on such abstruse problems. The mystery of the beginning of all things is insoluble by us, and I for one must be content to remain an Agnostic.”

Francis Schaeffer remarked:

What a stupid reply and I didn’t say wicked. It just seems to me that here is 2 plus 2 equals 36 at this particular place.

Darwin, C. R. to Graham, William 3 July 1881

Nevertheless you have expressed my inward conviction, though far more vividly and clearly than I could have done, that the Universe is not the result of chance.* But then with me the horrid doubt always arises whether the convictions of man’s mind, which has been developed from the mind of the lower animals, are of any value or at all trustworthy. Would any one trust in the convictions of a monkey’s mind, if there are any convictions in such a mind?

Francis Schaeffer observed:

Can you feel this man? He is in real agony. You can feel the whole of modern man in this tension with Darwin. My mind can’t accept that ultimate of chance, that the universe is a result of chance. He has said 3 or 4 times now that he can’t accept that it all happened by chance and then he will write someone else and say something different. How does he say this (about the mind of a monkey) and then put forth this grand theory? Wrong theory I feel but great just the same. Grand in the same way as when I look at many of the paintings today and I differ with their message but you must say the mark of the mannishness of man are one those paintings titanic-ally even though the message is wrong and this is the same with Darwin.  But how can he say you can’t think, you come from a monkey’s mind, and you can’t trust a monkey’s mind, and you can’t trust a monkey’s conviction, so how can you trust me? Trust me here, but not there is what Darwin is saying. In other words it is very selective. 

Now we are down to the last year of Darwin’s life.

* The Duke of Argyll (Good Words, April 1885, p. 244) has recorded a few words on this subject, spoken by my father in the last year of his life. “. . . in the course of that conversation I said to Mr. Darwin, with reference to some of his own remarkable works on the Fertilisation of Orchids, and upon The Earthworms,and various other observations he made of the wonderful contrivances for certain purposes in nature—I said it was impossible to look at these without seeing that they were the effect and the expression of mind. I shall never forget Mr. Darwin’s answer. He looked at me very hard and said, ‘Well, that often comes over me with overwhelming force; but at other times,’ and he shook his head vaguely, adding, ‘it seems to go away.'”

Francis Schaeffer summarized :

And this is the great Darwin, and it makes you cry inside. This is the great Darwin and he ends as a man in total tension.

Francis Schaeffer noted that in Darwin’s 1876 Autobiography that Darwin he is going to set forth two arguments for God in this and again you will find when he comes to the end of this that he is in tremendous tension. Darwin wrote, 

At the present day the most usual argument for the existence of an intelligent God is drawn from the deep inward conviction and feelings which are experienced by most persons.Formerly I was led by feelings such as those just referred to (although I do not think that the religious sentiment was ever strongly developed in me), to the firm conviction of the existence of God and of the immortality of the soul. In my Journal I wrote that whilst standing in the midst of the grandeur of a Brazilian forest, ‘it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, admiration, and devotion which fill and elevate the mind.’ I well remember my conviction that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body; but now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind.

Francis Schaeffer remarked:

Now Darwin says when I look back and when I look at nature I came to the conclusion that man can not be just a fly! But now Darwin has moved from being a younger man to an older man and he has allowed his presuppositions to enter in to block his logic. These things at the end of his life he had no intellectual answer for. To block them out in favor of his theory. Remember the letter of his that said he had lost all aesthetic senses when he had got older and he had become a clod himself. Now interesting he says just the same thing, but not in relation to the arts, namely music, pictures, etc, but to nature itself. Darwin said, “But now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions  and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind…” So now you see that Darwin’s presuppositions have not only robbed him of the beauty of man’s creation in art, but now the universe. He can’t look at it now and see the beauty. The reason he can’t see the beauty is for a very, very , very simple reason: THE BEAUTY DRIVES HIM TO DISTRACTION. THIS IS WHERE MODERN MAN IS AND IT IS HELL. The art is hell because it reminds him of man and how great man is, and where does it fit in his system? It doesn’t. When he looks at nature and it’s beauty he is driven to the same distraction and so consequently you find what has built up inside him is a real death, not  only the beauty of the artistic but the beauty of nature. He has no answer in his logic and he is left in tension.  He dies and has become less than human because these two great things (such as any kind of art and the beauty of  nature) that would make him human  stand against his theory.

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DO THESE WORDS OF DARWIN APPLY TO YOU TODAY? “I am like a man who has become colour-blind.”

ADRIAN ROGERS NOTED IN HIS SERMON “The Cradle that Rocked the World“:

Sir Fred Hoyle, at the British Academy of Science—a leading mathematician, a leading astronomer—shook up a lot of people in the scientific community, when he said this—listen: “We must now admit to ourselves that the probability of life arising by chance, by evolution, is the same probability as throwing six on a die 5 million consecutive times.” Now, get a die, and begin to throw it; and, if you can throw six, it’ll land on six 5 million times in a row—that’s the probability that life could arise by spontaneous generation. He went on to say—this is Sir Fred Hoyle: “Let us be scientifically honest with ourselves. The probability of having life arise to greater and greater complexity in organization by chance is the same probability of having a tornado tear through a junkyard and form a 747 on the other end.” What is this great scientist saying? That random and impersonal chance does not create complexity in design— that’s what he’s saying.

IF WE ARE LEFT WITH JUST THE MACHINE THEN WHAT IS THE FINAL CONCLUSION IF THERE WAS NO PERSONAL GOD THAT CREATED US? I sent you a CD that starts off with the song DUST IN THE WIND by Kerry Livgren of the group KANSAS which was a hit song in 1978 when it rose to #6 on the charts because so many people connected with the message of the song. It included these words, “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

Kerry Livgren himself said that he wrote the song because he saw where man was without a personal God in the picture. Solomon pointed out in the Book of Ecclesiastes that those who believe that God doesn’t exist must accept three things. FIRST, death is the end and SECOND, chance and time are the only guiding forces in this life.  FINALLY, power reigns in this life and the scales are never balanced. The Christian can  face death and also confront the world knowing that it is not determined by chance and time alone and finally there is a judge who will balance the scales.

Both Kerry Livgren and the bass player Dave Hope of Kansas became Christians eventually. Kerry Livgren first tried Eastern Religions and Dave Hope had to come out of a heavy drug addiction. I was shocked and elated to see their personal testimony on The 700 Club in 1981 and that same  interview can be seen on You Tube today. Livgren lives in Topeka, Kansas today where he teaches “Diggers,” a Sunday school class at Topeka Bible ChurchDAVE HOPE is the head of Worship, Evangelism and Outreach at Immanuel Anglican Church in Destin, Florida.

The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thank you again for your time and I know how busy you are.

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.com, http://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, Box 23416, LittleRock, AR 72221, United States

Is the Bible historically accurate? Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.

You can hear DAVE HOPE and Kerry Livgren’s stories from this youtube link:

(part 1 ten minutes)

(part 2 ten minutes)

Kansas – Dust in the Wind (Official Video)

Uploaded on Nov 7, 2009

Pre-Order Miracles Out of Nowhere now at http://www.miraclesoutofnowhere.com

About the film:
In 1973, six guys in a local band from America’s heartland began a journey that surpassed even their own wildest expectations, by achieving worldwide superstardom… watch the story unfold as the incredible story of the band KANSAS is told for the first time in the DVD Miracles Out of Nowhere.

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Adrian Rogers on Darwinism

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___________________________________ Francis Schaeffer pictured below: ____________________________ Francis Schaeffer “BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY” Whatever…HTTHR Dr. Francis schaeffer – The flow of Materialism(from Part 4 of Whatever happened to human race?) Dr. Francis Schaeffer – The Biblical flow of Truth & History (intro) Francis Schaeffer – The Biblical Flow of History & Truth (1) Dr. Francis Schaeffer […]

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RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 126 Christian de Duve, Nobel Prize-winning Belgian cytologist and biochemist, “There is a complete disassociation between the dogma and belief and the way we scientists approach the search for truth.” (Post includes portion of my 5-15-94 letter to him)

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On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

I have attempted to respond to all of Dr. Kroto’s friends arguments and I have posted my responses one per week for over a year now. Here are some of my earlier posts:

Arif AhmedHaroon Ahmed,  Jim Al-Khalili, Sir David AttenboroughMark Balaguer, Horace Barlow, Michael BateSir Patrick BatesonSimon Blackburn, Colin Blakemore, Ned BlockPascal BoyerPatricia ChurchlandAaron CiechanoverNoam Chomsky, Brian CoxPartha Dasgupta,  Alan Dershowitz, Frank DrakeHubert Dreyfus, John DunnBart Ehrman, Mark ElvinRichard Ernst, Stephan Feuchtwang, Robert FoleyDavid Friend,  Riccardo GiacconiIvar Giaever , Roy GlauberRebecca GoldsteinDavid J. Gross,  Brian Greene, Susan GreenfieldStephen F Gudeman,  Alan Guth, Jonathan HaidtTheodor W. Hänsch, Brian Harrison,  Stephen HawkingHermann Hauser, Robert HindeRoald Hoffmann,  Bruce HoodGerard ‘t HooftCaroline HumphreyNicholas Humphrey,  Herbert Huppert,  Gareth Stedman Jones, Steve JonesShelly KaganMichio Kaku,  Stuart KauffmanMasatoshi Koshiba,  Lawrence KraussHarry Kroto, George Lakoff,  Rodolfo LlinasElizabeth Loftus,  Alan MacfarlaneDan McKenzie,  Mahzarin BanajiPeter MillicanMarvin MinskyLeonard Mlodinow,  P.Z.Myers,   Yujin NagasawaAlva NoeDouglas Osheroff, David Parkin,  Jonathan Parry, Roger Penrose,  Saul PerlmutterHerman Philipse,  Carolyn PorcoRobert M. PriceVS RamachandranLisa RandallLord Martin ReesColin RenfrewAlison Richard,  C.J. van Rijsbergen,  Oliver Sacks, John SearleMarcus du SautoySimon SchafferJ. L. Schellenberg,   Lee Silver Peter Singer,  Walter Sinnott-ArmstrongRonald de Sousa, Victor StengerJohn SulstonBarry Supple,   Leonard Susskind, Raymond TallisMax TegmarkNeil deGrasse Tyson,  Martinus J. G. Veltman, Craig Venter.Alexander Vilenkin, Sir John Walker, James D. WatsonFrank WilczekSteven Weinberg, and  Lewis Wolpert,

Origin, Evolution, and the Future of Life on Earth

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Ultimate Reality of Christian de Duve

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The Origin, Evolution & Future of Life (H1150) – Full Video

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Christian de Duve

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Christian de Duve
Christian de Duve.tif

de Duve lecturing on the origin of the eukaryotic cell in October 2012
Born Christian René Marie Joseph de Duve
2 October 1917
Thames Ditton, Surrey, Great Britain
Died 4 May 2013 (aged 95)
Grez-Doiceau, Belgium
Residence Belgium
Citizenship Belgian
Nationality Belgium
Fields
Institutions
Alma mater
  • Onze-Lieve-Vrouwecollege
  • Catholic University of Leuven
Known for Cell organelles
Notable awards
Spouse Janine Herman (m. 1943; d. 2008)
Children
  • Two sons, two daughters:
  • Thierry de Duve
  • Alain de Duve
  • Anne de Duve
  • Françoise de Duve

Dutch Queen Beatrix meets 5 Nobel Prize winners: Paul Berg, Christian de Duve, Steven Weinberg, Manfred Eigen, Nicolaas Bloembergen (1983)

Christian René Marie Joseph, Viscount de Duve (2 October 1917 – 4 May 2013) was a Nobel Prize-winning Belgian cytologist and biochemist.[2][3] He made serendipitous discoveries of two cell organelles, peroxisome and lysosome, for which he shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1974 with Albert Claude and George E. Palade (“for their discoveries concerning the structural and functional organization of the cell”).[4] In addition to peroxisome and lysosome, he invented the scientific names such as autophagy, endocytosis, and exocytosis in a single occasion.[5][6][7][8][9]

A son of Belgian refugees during the First World War, de Duve was born in Thames Ditton, Surrey, Great Britain.[10] His family returned to Belgium in 1920. He was educated by the Jesuits at Onze-Lieve-Vrouwinstituut in Antwerp, and studied medicine at the Catholic University of Leuven. Upon earning his MD in 1941, he joined research in chemistry, working on insulin and its role in diabetes mellitus. His thesis earned him the highest university degree agrégation de l’enseignement supérieur (equivalent to PhD) in 1945. With his work on the purification of penicillin, he obtained an MSc degree in 1946. He went for further training under (later Nobel Prize winners) Hugo Theorell at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, and Carl and Gerti Cori at the Washington University in St. Louis. He joined the faculty of medicine at Leuven in 1947. In 1960 he was invited to the Rockfeller Institute (now Rockefeller University). With mutual arrangement with Leuven, he became professor in both universities from 1962, dividing his time between Leuven and New York. He became emeritus professor of Leuven university in 1985, and of Rockefeller in 1988.

De Duve was decorated with Viscount in 1989 by King Baudouin of Belgium. He was also a recipient of Francqui Prize, Gairdner Foundation International Award, Heineken Prize, and E. B. Wilson Medal. In 1974 he founded the International Institute of Cellular and Molecular Pathology in Brussels, eventually renamed the de Duve Institute in 2005. He was the founding President of the L’Oréal-UNESCO Awards for Women in Science.[11]

He died on 4 May (Saturday) 2013 by self-induced euthanasia in the presence of all of his children.[12]

Early life and education[edit]

De Duve was born of a shopkeeper Alphonse de Duve and wife Madeleine Pungs in the village of Thames Ditton, near London. His parents fled Belgium at the outbreak of the First World War. After the war in 1920, at age three, he and his family returned to Belgium. He was a precocious boy, always the best student (primus perpetuus as he recalled) in school, except for one year when he was pronounced “out of competition” to give chance to other students.[2] He was educated by the Jesuits at Onze-Lieve-Vrouwinstituut in Antwerp, before studying at the Catholic University of Leuven in 1934.[13] He wanted to specialize in endocrinology and joined the laboratory of the Belgian physiologist Joseph P. Bouckaert. During his last year at medical school in 1940, the Germans invaded Belgium. He was drafted to the Belgian army, and posted in southern France as medical officer. There, he was almost immediately taken as prisoner of war by Germans. But fortunate of his ability to speak fluent German and Flemish, he outwitted his captors and escaped back to Belgium. (The adventure he later described as “more comical than heroic”.)[14] He immediately continued his medical course, and obtained his MD in 1941 from Leuven. His primary research was on insulin and its role in glucose metabolism. He made an initial discovery that a commercial preparation of insulin was contaminated with another pancreatic hormone, the insulin antagonist glucagon. However, laboratory supplies at Leuven were in shortage, he therefore enrolled in a programme to earn a degree in chemistry at the Cancer Institute. His research on insulin was summed up in a 400-page book titled Glucose, Insuline et Diabète (Glucose, Insulin and Diabetes) published in 1945, simultaneously in Brussels and Paris. The book was condensed into a technical dissertation which earned him the most advanced degree at the university level agrégation de l’enseignement supérieur (an equivalent of a doctorate – he called it “a sort of glorified Ph.D.”) in 1945.[14] His thesis was followed by a number of scientific publications.[15] He subsequently obtained MSc in chemistry in 1946, for which he worked on the purification of penicillin.[16][17] To enhance his skill in biochemistry, he trained in the laboratory of Hugo Theorell (who later won The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1955) at the Nobel Medical Institute in Stockholm for 18 months during 1946-1947. In 1947 he received a financial assistance as Rockefeller Foundation fellow and worked for six months with Carl and Gerti Cori‘s at Washington University in St. Louis (the husband and wife were joint winners of The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1947).[18]

Career and research[edit]

In March 1947 de Duve joined the faculty of the medical school of the Catholic University of Leuven teaching physiological chemistry. In 1951 he became full professor. In 1960 Detlev Bronk, the then president of the Rockfeller Institute (what is now Rockefeller University) of New York City, met him at Brussels and offered him professorship and a laboratory. The rector of Leuven, afraid of entirely losing de Duve, made a compromise over dinner that de Duve would still be under part-time appointment with a relief from teaching and conducting examinations. The rector and Bronk made an agreement which would intilally last for five years. The official implementation was in 1962, and de Duve simultaneously headed the research laboratories at Leuven and at Rockefeller University, dividing his time between New York and Leuven.[19] In 1969 the Leuven university was split into two separate universities. He joined the French-speaking side of Université catholique de Louvain. He took emeritus status at Université catholique de Louvain in 1985 and at Rockefeller in 1988, though he continued to conduct research. Among other subjects, he studied the distribution of enzymes in rat liver cells using rate-zonal centrifugation. His work on cell fractionation provided an insight into the function of cell structures. He specialized in subcellular biochemistry and cell biology and discovered new cell organelles.[20][21][22][23][24][25][26][27][28][29][30][31][32][33]

Personal life[edit]

De Duve was brought up as a Roman Catholic. In his later years he tended towards agnosticism, if not strict atheism.[67][68] However, de Duve also thought that “Most biologists, today, tend to see life and mind as cosmic imperatives, written into the very fabric of the universe, rather than as extraordinarily improbable products of chance.[69] “It would be an exaggeration to say I’m not afraid of death,” he explicitly said to a Belgian newspaper Le Soir just a month before his death, “but I’m not afraid of what comes after, because I’m not a believer.”[70][71] He strongly supported biological evolution as a fact, and dismissive of creation science and intelligent design, as explicitly stated in his last book, Genetics of Original Sin: The Impact of Natural Selection on the Future of Humanity. He was among the seventy-eight Nobel laureates in science to endorse the effort to repeal Louisiana Science Education Act of 2008.[72]

De Duve married Janine Herman on 30 September 1943. Together they had had two sons, Thierry and Alain, and two daughters, Anne and Françoise. Janine died in 2008, aged 86.[16]

Death[edit]

De Duve died on 4 May 2013, at his home in Nethen, Belgium, at the age of 95. He decided to end his life by legal euthanasia, performed by two doctors before his four children. He had been long suffering from cancer and atrial fibrillation, and his health problems were exacerbated by a recent fall in his home. He is survived by two sons and two daughters; two brothers, Pierre and Daniel; seven grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.[73][74][75]

De Duve was cremated as he had willed, and his ashes were distributed among family members and friends.[3]

Awards and honours[edit]

De Duve won the Francqui Prize for Biological and Medical Sciences in 1960, and the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 1974. King Baudouin of Belgium honoured him to Viscount in 1989.[16] He was the recipient of the Canada Gairdner International Award in 1967, and the Dr H.P. Heineken Prize for Biochemistry and Biophysics in 1973 from the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. He was elected a foreign associate of the US National Academy of Sciences in 1975. He won the Harden Medal of the Biochemical Society of Great Britain in 1978; the Theobald Smith Award from the Albany Medical College in 1981; the Jimenez Diaz Award in 1985; the Innovators of Biochemistry Award from Medical College of Virginia in 1986; and the E. B. Wilson Medal from the American Society for Cell Biology in 1989.[76] He was also a member of the Royal Academies of Medicine and the Royal Academy of Sciences, Arts, and of Literature of Belgium; the Pontifical Academy of Sciences of the Vatican; the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; the French National Academy of Medicine; the Academy of Sciences of Paris; the Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina; the American Philosophical Society. He was elected a Foreign Member of the Royal Society (ForMemRS) in 1988.[1] In addition, he received honorary doctorates from eighteen universities around the world.[18]

Legacy[edit]

De Duve founded a multidisciplinary biomedical research institute at Université catholique de Louvain in 1974, called the International Institute of Cellular and Molecular Pathology (ICP), and later renamed “de Duve Institute.”[77] He remained its president until 1991. On his 80th birthday in 1997 it was renamed the Christian de Duve Institute of Cellular Pathology. In 2005 it was further contracted to simply the de Duve Institute.[78]

De Duve was one of the founding members of the Belgian Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, established on 15 September 1951.[79]

De Duve is remembered as an inventor of important scientific terminology. He coined the word lysosome in 1955, peroxisome in 1966, and autophagy, endocytosis, and exocytosis in one instance at the Ciba Foundation Symposium on Lysosomes held in London during 12–14 February 1963, while he, “was in a word-coining mood.”[21][80]

De Duve’s life, including his work resulting in a Nobel Prize, and his passion for biology is the subject of a documentary film Portrait of a Nobel Prize: Christian de Duve (Portrait de Nobel : Christian de Duve), directed by Aurélie Wijnants. It was first aired on Eurochannel in 2012.[81]

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In  the third video below in the 144th clip in this series are his words and  my response is below them. 

50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

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Quote from Christian de Duve in the film series “A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)” and my response below ( Original interview was in 2005 and was conducted by Harry Kroto at the annual Lindau meeting):

Of course, I fully agree with you and I think with most of my fellow scientists. There is a complete disassociation between the dogma and belief and the way we scientists approach the search for truth.   And so obviously as a scientist and being brought up as a Catholic I could not safely continue accepting the teaching of the church. 

Let me make two observations here.

FIRST, I think a person needs to take time examine the historical accuracy of the Bible. If the Bible is true then history and historical records should have something to say about that.

Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject and if you like you could just google these subjects: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.,

SECOND, if there is no lasting meaning to life then CHANCE RULES. Let me discuss that a little more below.

Christian de Duve was very critical of Creationism!!!

Chrisian de Duve was a very sharp critic of creationism even though he grew up in a family that who were committed Catholics. In the Wikipedia article cited above we read these words:

“Most biologists, today, tend to see life and mind as cosmic imperatives, written into the very fabric of the universe, rather than as extraordinarily improbable products of chance.[69] “It would be an exaggeration to say I’m not afraid of death,” he explicitly said to a Belgian newspaper Le Soir just a month before his death, “but I’m not afraid of what comes after, because I’m not a believer.”[70][71] He strongly supported biological evolution as a fact, and dismissive of creation science and intelligent design, as explicitly stated in his last book, Genetics of Original Sin: The Impact of Natural Selection on the Future of Humanity. He was among the seventy-eight Nobel laureates in science to endorse the effort to repeal Louisiana Science Education Act of 2008.[72]

I do want to salute him for at least taking a careful look and seeing that there were clearly two different paths we can take philosophically. We can either realize that the answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ and the Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted. Or we have to say that it is all by CHANCE. Below are the words of Christian de Duve: 

“The answer of modern molecular biology to this much-debated question is categorical: chance, and chance alone, did it all, from primeval soup to man, with only natural selection to sift its effects. This affirmation now rests on overwhelming factual evidence.”

A Guided Tour Of The Living Cell, Volume Two, Page 357
Scientific American Library, 1984

Portion of my 5-15-94 letter to Christian de Duve

On May 15, 1994 on the 10th anniversary of the passing of Francis Schaeffer I attempted to send a letter to almost every living Nobel Prize winner and I believe  Dr.Christian de Duve  was probably among that group and here is a portion of that letter below:

I have enclosed a cassette tape by Adrian Rogers and it includes  a story about  Charles Darwin‘s journey from  the position of theistic evolution to agnosticism. Here are the four bridges that Adrian Rogers says evolutionists can’t cross in the CD  “Four Bridges that the Evolutionist Cannot Cross.” 1. The Origin of Life and the law of biogenesis. 2. The Fixity of the Species. 3.The Second Law of Thermodynamics. 4. The Non-Physical Properties Found in Creation.  

Evolution Fact of Fiction Adrian Rogers (same message I put on cassette tape back in 1994)

Uploaded on Nov 13, 2011

The Theory of Evolution Destroyed!!

 

Adrian Rogers is pictured below and Francis Schaeffer above.

 

In the first 3 minutes of the cassette tape is the hit song “Dust in the Wind.” Below I have given you some key points  Francis Schaeffer makes about the experiment that Solomon undertakes in the book of Ecclesiastes to find satisfaction by  looking into  learning (1:16-18), laughter, ladies, luxuries,  and liquor (2:1-3, 8, 10, 11), and labor (2:4-6, 18-20).

Schaeffer noted that Solomon took a look at the meaning of life on the basis of human life standing alone between birth and death “under the sun.” This phrase UNDER THE SUN appears over and over in Ecclesiastes. The Christian Scholar Ravi Zacharias noted, “The key to understanding the Book of Ecclesiastes is the term UNDER THE SUN — What that literally means is you lock God out of a closed system and you are left with only this world of Time plus Chance plus matter.”

Here the first 7 verses of Ecclesiastes followed by Schaeffer’s commentary on it:

The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem. Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity. What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun? A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever. The sun rises, and the sun goes down, and hastens to the place where it rises. The wind blows to the south and goes around to the north; around and around goes the wind, and on its circuits the wind returns. All streams run to the sea, but the sea is not full; to the place where the streams flow, there they flow again.  

Solomon is showing a high degree of comprehension of evaporation and the results of it.  Seeing also in reality nothing changes. There is change but always in a set framework and that is cycle. You can relate this to the concepts of modern man. Ecclesiastes is the only pessimistic book in the Bible and that is because of the place where Solomon limits himself. He limits himself to the question of human life, life under the sun between birth and death and the answers this would give.

Solomon doesn’t place man outside of the cycle. Man doesn’t escape the cycle. Man is in the cycle. Birth and death and youth and old age.

There is no doubt in my mind that Solomon had the same experience in his life that I had as a younger man (at the age of 18 in 1930). I remember standing by the sea and the moon arose and it was copper and beauty. Then the moon did not look like a flat dish but a globe or a sphere since it was close to the horizon. One could feel the global shape of the earth too. Then it occurred to me that I could contemplate the interplay of the spheres and I was exalted because I thought I can look upon them with all their power, might, and size, but they could contempt nothing. Then came upon me a horror of great darkness because it suddenly occurred to me that although I could contemplate them and they could contemplate nothing yet they would continue to turn in ongoing cycles when I saw no more forever and I was crushed.

Watching the film HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? in 1979 impacted my life greatly

Francis Schaeffer in the film WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?

Francis and Edith Schaeffer

 

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Let me show you some inescapable conclusions if you choose to live without God in the picture. Schaeffer noted that Solomon came to these same conclusions when he looked at life “under the sun.”

  1. Death is the great equalizer (Eccl 3:20, “All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return.”)
  2. Chance and time have determined the past, and they will determine the future.  (Ecclesiastes 9:11-13 “I have seen something else under the sun:  The race is not to the swift
    or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant  or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.  Moreover, no one knows when their hour will come: As fish are caught in a cruel net, or birds are taken in a snare, so people are trapped by evil times  that fall unexpectedly upon them.”)
  3. Power reigns in this life, and the scales are not balanced(Eccl 4:1; “Again I looked and saw all the oppression that was taking place under the sun: I saw the tears of the oppressed—
    and they have no comforter; power was on the side of their oppressors—  and they have no comforter.” 7:15 “In this meaningless life of mine I have seen both of these: the righteous perishing in their righteousness,  and the wicked living long in their wickedness. ).
  4. Nothing in life gives true satisfaction without God including knowledge (1:16-18), ladies and liquor (2:1-3, 8, 10, 11), and great building projects (2:4-6, 18-20).
  5. There is no ultimate lasting meaning in life. (1:2)

By the way, the final chapter of Ecclesiastes finishes with Solomon emphasizing that serving God is the only proper response of man. Solomon looks above the sun and brings God back into the picture in the final chapter of the book in Ecclesiastes 12:13-14, “ Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.  For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.”

The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted. In 1978 I heard the song “Dust in the Wind” by Kansas when it rose to #6 on the charts. That song told me that Kerry Livgren the writer of that song and a member of Kansas had come to the same conclusion that Solomon had and that “all was meaningless UNDER THE SUN,” and looking ABOVE THE SUN was the only option.  I remember mentioning to my friends at church that we may soon see some members of Kansas become Christians because their search for the meaning of life had obviously come up empty even though they had risen from being an unknown band to the top of the music business and had all the wealth and fame that came with that.

Livgren wrote, “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

Both Kerry Livgren and Dave Hope of Kansas became Christians eventually. Kerry Livgren first tried Eastern Religions and Dave Hope had to come out of a heavy drug addiction. I was shocked and elated to see their personal testimony on The 700 Club in 1981.  Livgren lives in Topeka, Kansas today where he teaches “Diggers,” a Sunday school class at Topeka Bible Church. Hope is the head of Worship, Evangelism and Outreach at Immanuel Anglican Church in Destin, Florida.

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______________   George Harrison Swears & Insults Paul and Yoko Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds- The Beatles The Beatles:   I have dedicated several posts to this series on the Beatles and I don’t know when this series will end because Francis Schaeffer spent a lot of time listening to the Beatles and talking […]

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FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE PART 157 John Hospers Part M this post includes portion of 6-2-94 letter from Hospers to me blasting Christian Evangelicalism, (Featured artist is Matthew Ritchie )

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Image result for john hospers ayn rand

I sent a cassette tape of Adrian Rogers on Evolution to John Hospers in May of 1994 which was the 10th anniversary of Francis Schaeffer’s passing and I promptly received a typed two page response from Dr. John Hospers. Dr. Hospers had both read my letter and all the inserts plus listened to the whole sermon and had some very angry responses. If you would like to hear the sermon from Adrian Rogers and read the transcript then refer to my earlier post at this link.  Over the last few weeks I have posted  portions of Dr. Hospers’ letter and portions of the cassette tape that he listened to back in 1994, but today I want  to look at some other comments made on that cassette tape that John Hospers listened to and I will also post a few comments that Dr. Hospers made in that 2 page letter.

Image result for john hospers

I have made the point in the cassette tape I sent Dr. Hospers and in the letter I sent him that without God in the picture no one can have a lasting meaning to their life and there is no purpose in life. Here is a portion of Hospers’ June 2, 1994 letter to me that refers to the song DUST IN THE WIND specially to his message that WE ARE JUST DUST IN THE WIND ultimately:

Then follows one of the countless non sequiturs in your missive: IF LIFE HAS MEANING BECAUSE OF RELATIONSHIPS, DOES LIFE HAVE ETERNAL MEANING ONLY IF WE HAVE ETERNAL RELATIONSHIPS?

First, does life have meaning only because of relationships? with whom? are animals included? books? anyway, why should life be MEANINGFUL only because of relationships? A very doubtful premise.

Second, nothing follows from this about ETERNAL RELATIONSHIPS, as any elementary student of logic knows. Why should relationships be eternal? Our lives can have profound meaning thru various activities and relationships; why do they have to be eternal? Why is it so uncomfortable for you to realize that all things pass?  They are none the less real and noble because they are temporary. In another couple of thousand years. the earth will undergo another ice age; in another 6 billion years the sun will be extinguished and life on earth no longer possible. That’s just a fact; can’t you face facts? why do you have to spin fancies to feed your wishes, and make things other than they are? Can’t you take reality straight? The child demands the universe to be as he wishes it; I would think we would get over that delusion by the time we become adults.

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Now I want to take a look at what our purpose should be with God in the picture.

Francis Schaeffer pictured below:

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Francis Schaeffer takes a closer look below at what our purpose should be in this world:

Who knows our purpose?

Why are we who we are? Why do we exist? These are not crazy questions. They are crucial questions, never more so than at the end of twentieth century. But where do we go to find answers? Do we begin with ourselves? Do we start with man as man? No. we must not. Starting with ourselves will never help us to understand ourselves.

Of course, we may ask the question, “Why?” Or we can word it in other ways, “What is the reason for man? What is the person of man? What is the purpose of man? What is the reason for his existence?” Surely this is the cry of twentieth century man, if he is a sensitive man at all. It recalls the reason for human existence. So when people ask me in a discussion what the Christian answer is to the reason of existence, without hesitancy 1 would say the Bible speaks of the purpose of our creation when it says to love God with all our heart and soul and mind. Yet this must be understood in the Scriptural framework. It is not to love God in the concept of a Kierkegaardian (Soren Kierkegaard 1813-55) leap. It is not to love God as though faith were something in itself. The answer, according to the Bible, is not a faith in faith, but a faith in one who, is there and, therefore, it is a living relationship with him. It is to love God with all our heart and soul and mind, but definitely in the Biblical sense.

“Hear. O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts.”

They are to teach the commands not in some external form but they are to be in their hearts. You are to love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength … this is not to be an external thing put on like a hat in my religious moments, or for a humanistic reason; but it is rather to be the set of my heart.

This is the Old Testament statement that Jesus quoted in Matthew 22: 34-40; Mark 12: 28- 31; and Luke 10: 25-28. So Jesus” restatement sweeps us back to the beginning of our relationship with God, not ours only but mankind’s, and not only mankind’s but each individual man. This is the basis of the first commandment; this is the reason for Adam’s existence; and it is the reason for your existence, or you have none, or no sufficient one. It is the call of loving, personal fellowship and communication with the God who is here. And, then, with each other – those who are my neighbours in the sense of being the same structure as myself; those who are my kind; those who are in the same circle of creation as that in which I stand, namely people. Consequently. the fulfilling of the purpose of our existence is to have fellowship, communication and love – first to God, and then to those who are our kind – all mankind.

Four points, in conclusion. First: How wonderful, then, is the death of Jesus Christ in space, time and history. What love it shows! How far removed from that soft nothingness, that amoral concept of” modem man’s word, god. How opposite. How wonderful is this love. John 3: 16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” It is not a universal salvation, but it is for those who. on the basis of their mannishness, accept the gift. Jesus carefully ties this to his historic death on the cross, that whosoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life. How wonderful is that death on the cross!

Secondly, the command to love God is now meant to be the Christian’s first commandment. We are not saved for an antinomian (lawlessness) end. We are saved to fulfil the purpose of our creation in the first place, and not on merely some offer of our future day in perfection, but now – through the work of the Spirit in our life. Love God with all our heart, soul, and mind. When we do not love God, we are not fulfilling the purpose of our creation. As such, we have returned to the sin of Adam and Eve: to think alone, to will alone, as though we are God. When we fail to do this, the peace of God will die in our hearts; our fellowship with God will wither. Once more we have disobediently presumed upon that tremendous love, fellowship, and communion that God offers us. And it is not only wrong, it is destructive. We will have destroyed the purpose of our creation anew, the purpose for which God has made us. Christians should not expect the peace of God in their hearts while trampling upon the love of God – this is too much, it is not this way. And then we must learn the ever present wonder of the present cleansing of the Blood of the Lamb, to return again, and say we are sorry and have our fellowship restored on the basis of the finished work of the Son of God.

Thirdly, as we yield to the Holy Spirit, there will be fruit. The first fruit is the fulfilling of the command love God with all our heart, soul and mind. But as we yield to the Holy Spirit there will be a fruit to love others and each in his or her proper way. For example, the husband   shall love his wife (Eph 5: 25-29). There is to be a love in the home within the legal circle of marriage. There must be a legal circle if we are to live in the universe that has meaning. But inside that legal circle there is to be love. There arc other loves. The Holy Spirit will produce a non-confused loving one’s neighbor, but each in his own place or position. In Acts 4: 32-35 we are told of the sharing that went on amongst the early Christians. This sharing is not to be mechanically administered either by the Slate or the Church or a Christian organization. We cannot make people share things like this together but the call is to share. Loving each other through the work of the Holy Spirit is not some mere emotional feeling al a certain point, but it is the practical outworking from that love into the practical things of life. Rejoice with those that rejoice, weep with those that weep. bear each other’s burdens. This cannot be separated from the bearing of the burdens of the full man – economic, psychological. Emotional, moral, social, etc. among the brotherhood of those who have become brothers because they have a common Father

Fourthly. while the Bible makes plain that threre are two humanities, (those who are saved, and those who are not saved): it equally makes plain that there is one humanity. We are two humanities ethically, morally, in relationship to God, in a fulfilled purpose. But in the structure of what man was made originally, there was a unity of man. We are of the same flesh and bones. If there is to be a fulfilling of the purpose of our creation it will also ne exhibited in this: our love will not stop at ourselves. It will flow out in the most practical of forms tp all those who arc my kind. It will most certainly express the gospel to our lost generation. Here is the context of evangelism. This is the fulfillment of the purpose of our creation at his era and this time of the moving reels of history.

1 This is an edited version .of a lecture given by Dr Schaeffer. The original lecture is available on cassette (number XI60) from: The Manor House. Greatham. Liss. Hants GU33 6HF UK; phone 01420 538436.

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Conversations With Ayn Rand Part 1

by John Hospers

I remember another argument we had, concerning censorship. Only government, she said, could be said to censor. I brought up the case of the Catholic Church censoring a book or film. She insisted that this was not censorship. A cardinal or pope may threaten excommunication for reading the book, but if one doesn’t like it one can leave the church that imposes such restrictions. The church can’t take away your citizenship or put you in prison. The government, by contrast, can do these things.

The question was whether these differences were sufficient to entitle us to say that it is censorship in the government case but not in the church case. One could slice that either way, I suggested. But suppose that I grant that the government can censor a film and the church can’t (i.e. what the church does isn’t censorship). What then of the following example? A book is published exposing the practices of certain drug companies and pharmaceutical houses. The drug companies don’t like this, but of course they can’t arrest anyone for buying the book. So they pay the publisher X thousands of dollars to withdraw the book permanently from circulation. The book is then as effectively stifled as if the government had banned it. Is that not censorship?No, not by Rand’s definition. Yet it has exactly the same effect as government censorship; would it really be false, or even unreasonable, to say that the book had been censored? Ayn opposed all government censorship, but she had no objection to the voluntary agreement between the publisher and the drug company.

One other aspect of political philosophy that seemed to bother Ayn as well as me was the problem of imperfect governments. A government that uses force only in retaliation against its initiation by others is entitled to our support. But every government in the world violates this principle (that force may be used only in retaliation). Even the act of collecting taxes is the initiation of force against citizens.

Under what circumstances then is a citizen obliged to do what his government decrees? What if the law says that you can’t use physical force to restrain the person who is in the process of stealing your car (you can’t commit a crime against a person to correct a crime against property)? That is the law in the United States; but supposeyou don’t agree with that law. Must you obey it anyway? More serious still, what if the government itself is a rights-violator? Ayn would not say that the government of the U.S.S.R deserves our allegiance, or that we have a moral duty to obey it (e.g., toreport our friends who criticize the government). But the government of the United States differs only in degree from such a government. Should we obey only those laws that do not violate the retaliatory force principle (that is, only laws in which the government is exercising its proper function, the retaliatory use of force against those who have initiated it, such as murderers and muggers)? But then are we free to ignore all the others, such as laws prohibiting polluting someone else’s property (or is pollution to be called a case of the initiation of force?)? It seems as if the phrase “initiation of force” isn’t very clear, and its application to cases far from obvious.

Suppose you head the government of Spain and the Basques rebel, seeking independence. Should you suppress the revolt or not? One view would be that you should suppress it in order to restore law and order, which after all is what government is all about — you can’t be expected to live in a state of civil insurrection. On the other hand, if you think the Basques have been served a bad hand for these many years, you will think their cause a just one, and if Spain suppresses the revolt then Spain is initiating force against those who only want their freedom. (And the same with Northern Ireland, etc.) I suggested that what you will call initiation and retaliation will depend on your sympathies. You will put down the rebellion if you think the Spanish are in the right; if you think they are not, you will encourage the rebellion in the cause of freedom (and perhaps argue that they are only retaliating against the past aggressions of Spain, in keeping them part of Spain when they wanted only to be independent). Let’s accept the non-initiation of force principle, I said. How to apply it in cases is very, very sticky. Your country may have started the war, but if you are a soldier and another soldier comes at you with a bayonet, you will retaliate (preventatively?) even though your country, or its government, had initiated the conflict.

What justifies government, I wondered, in raising an army and doing other things connected with national defense? Government, she said, is the delegated agent of the individual to act in his or her self-defense. (She described all this in her paper “The Nature of Government,” but that had not yet been written at the time of ourdiscussions. Neither had any of her non-fiction works other than a very few short papers such as “Notes on the History of Free Enterprise” and “The Objectivist Ethics.”)

But this worried me. What about people who don’t want the government to act for them in such a capacity — either they don’t trust the government to do this, or for some other reason don’t desire the government to act as their agent? Ayn’s view (as I remember it) was that the government protects them whether they want the protection or not. (For example, it protects insane people although the insane people can’t give their consent.)

I was also concerned about how such delegation occurred. I don’t remember delegating my right of self-defense to government or indeed to any other person or institution. No contract was signed, nor was there, apparently, even an implicit agreement. But then there was a discussion of what constituted implicit agreement. John Locke, I said, held that continued residence implies consent, but surely this ismistaken — did continued residence in the U.S.S.R imply consent to thatgovernment? Like so many other issues, we played around with this one for awhile without coming to any definite conclusion.

Ayn and I had very different attitudes toward nature. I liked vacations in the mountains, swimming in lakes, tramping through the woods. She cared for none of these things. The city was man’s triumphant achievement; it was not nature but man’s changes on the face of nature in which she reveled. She had (I gathered) broken Frank’s heart by insisting on the move to New York City from their estate in the San Fernando Valley, where Frank had been in his element. But she had had enough of nature. She spoke movingly to me of Russian villages in which anything manmade was treasured. She spoke of having to walk, as a child, with her parents, through the Russian countryside from Leningrad to Odessa, to live with their uncle and escape starvation (her father had been classified as a capitalist by the Bolsheviks, and left to starve with his family in Leningrad). “Why should I help to pay for public beaches?” she once said. “I don’t care about the beach.”

I liked fresh fruit for dessert, and tried to avoid pastries. She, on the contrary, loved pastries; perhaps the fresh fruits reminded her too much of the wild nature of which she had had her fill in Russia. She tempted me with pastries when she and Frank took me to a restaurant, and I of course gave in and devoured as much pastry as shedid.

Other than the details just mentioned, she seldom referred to her early years in Russia. She preferred to discuss principles rather than specifics. But when I mentioned tyrannies and dictators, her voice would become hard and unrelenting. She almost sputtered in indignation at the mention of Khruschev, who was then at the helm in the USSR. I suggested that there has been some improvement there since Stalin, and that people were being invited to write letters of complaint to newspapers, for example about pollution and industrial inefficiency. “So that they can smoke these people out and then arrest them!” she spit out, from as deep a reserve of anger as I had ever heard in her.

She may not have known much about psychology — and she admitted as much — but when it came to the psychology of tyrants, she was a master sleuth of human motivations. She knew, as if from inside, how tyrants think. And her voice, it seemed to me, contained the grim but unspoken residue of years of hurt, disappointment, and anger in being victimized by tyrannical governments and their incompetent anduncaring bureaucracies. (She specifically instructed me to read Ludwig von Mises’s little book Bureaucracy to see why bureaucracies always worked badly, and I did.)

I did not have the unpleasant associations with the wide open spaces that she did. I was concerned with conservation of natural resources, including wildlife, and worried about the deterioration of the soil and the extinction of species. I was concerned too about human overpopulation of the globe and its effect on nature, the animalkingdom, and man himself. She did not seem to share my concern. Nature was merely a backdrop for man. As for overpopulation, she was all for population expansion. She mentioned the vast stretches of Nevada and Wyoming, largely empty of human beings; the United States could double its population and still not be crowded. A capitalist economy could do all this and more. I did not deny that it could, but wondered how all these added people in the wastes of Nevada would make a living, and how they would get enough water, and what room would be left for wildanimals and plants if the human race filled up all the cracks.

But I found no responsive chord in expressing these worries to her; this was a vein that could not be tapped. The most vividly-expressed concerns on my part evoked in her only a kind of incomprehension. Of course one could put this the other way round: that she could find in me no responsive chord by which to move me to the realization that these concerns were of no human importance.

I mentioned to her once that I thought the Europeans who settled America were in some respects more barbaric than the Indians they replaced: they robbed the Indians of their land, they decimated them with guns and smallpox, and robbed them of their food by wantonly killing their buffalo. What made the whites triumph, I opined, was not the superiority of their intellect or even the superiority of their political philosophy, but the superiority of their technology, specifically firearms. We had guns and the Indians didn’t; that was what defeated them, I said.

Native Americans were not among Ayn’s concerns. The greatness of the political ideal of the Founding Fathers overrode all the rest in her view. Not that she wanted Indians exterminated, of course — she wanted them to be a part of a nation operating on the principles of the American Constitution, citizens, voters, entrepreneurs if they chose to be. A proper government would have had a place for all races on equal terms. The shame that I, a descendent of some of these Europeanintruders, felt at what my ancestors had done apparently was not felt by her. And what should have been done if the Indian wanted no part of the white man’s government is a topic that she never addressed; or whether, if the Indian had claimed all of America as his own, since he had been here first, this claim should be honored. That America had a  functioning Constitution limiting the power of government andpromoting individual liberty — this, in her view, was such an extreme rarity in the history of nations, and such a unique event on this planet, as to justify whatever trouble it cost. The view of the white man as an interloper on another’s domain was strange indeed to one for whom America had been a beacon of light in a dark world — and which had meant for her the saving of one’s spirit and one’s very life.

On a visit to my parental home in Iowa I stopped to visit a colleague who had just returned from Peru. I had given Ayn my phone number in Iowa, and sure enough, she phoned. I remember asking her on the phone what she would say about the situation in Peru, where a few landowners (descendents of the Spanish conquistadors) owned almost all the land, leaving the native Indians little or nothing. Ayn remarked that if  they didn’t use all the land themselves, but let it lie fallow as Idescribed, they could make a lot more money renting it out to the native Indians, and in the course of time the Indians with their earnings could buy portions of it back, so as to own it once again. But that won’t work, I said — the Spanish purposely let the land lie fallow (some of the most fertile land in the nation), as a matter of pride, to show others that they don’t need to cultivate it for profit. Thus the Indians can’t even share-crop any of it, and are forced to settle further up into the mountains on land whose soil is too thin to withstand the plow. I suggested that under such conditions agovernment policy of land redistribution was called for.

Such a torrent of abusive language against compulsory redistribution then came over the wire that my parents could hear it across the room. I could hardly get a word in. I had no idea that mention of compulsory redistribution would ignite such venom. I said why I thought it was usually a bad policy, but that in the conditions described it wouldprobably be desirable, as when MacArthur did it in postwar Japan. But she would not hear of it. Dinner had been set on the table, and I motioned my parents to go on eating without me. But they didn’t, and by the time Ayn’s telephone tirade was over, half an hour later, the dinner was cold.

It was pleasant indeed to be invited to Ayn’s apartment to meet Mr and Mrs Henry Hazlitt and Mr and Mrs Ludwig von Mises. There wasn’t much shop talk, but it was wonderful to meet them and to socialize with them. (I later met with Henry Hazlitt numerous times in connection with his forthcoming book The Foundation of Morality.) I felt honored to be invited to join this distinguished company. I also enjoyed several luncheon meetings with Alan Greenspan.

I learned much more economics from my conversations with Ayn. But once I put my foot in it. She was explaining why, if some industry was to be deregulated, the businessman would have to be given fair warning, he would be unable to make the rational calculations he would have to make at the time.

I said nothing in response on that occasion. But a few weeks later, when she exclaimed that the New York taxicab medallions should be abolished at once, I said “But consider the taxi driver who has bought a medallion for $25,000 just before their abolition. He would lose that whole amount. Shouldn’t the taxi driver be given an interim period also for making his own rational calculations?”

She saw the point. “You bastard!” she exclaimed, and flounced out of the room to prepare tea. I could hear the cups clattering in the kitchen, and Frank trying to pour oil over troubled waters. When she returned to the living room she had partially regained her equanimity, but was still curt and tense.

I learned from that incident that it didn’t pay to be confrontational with her. If I saw or suspected some inconsistency, I would point it out in calm and even tones, as if it were “no big deal.” That way, she would often accept the correction and go on. To expose the inconsistency bluntly and nakedly would only infuriate her, and then there would be no more calm and even discussion that evening. I did not enjoy experiencing her fury; it was as if sunlight had suddenly been replaced by a thunderstorm. A freezing chill would then descend on the room, enough to make me shiver even in the warmth of summer. No, it wasn’t worth it. So what, if a few fallacies went unreported? Better to resume the conversation on an even keel, continue a calm exchange of views, and spare oneself the wrath of the almighty, than which nothing is more fearful.

(Adrian Rogers pictured below)

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How can I know the Bible is the Word of God? by Adrian Rogers

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Is the Bible historically accurate? Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.

 The Bible and Archaeology – Is the Bible from God? (Kyle Butt)

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During the 1990′s I actually made it a practice to write famous atheists and scientists that were mentioned by Adrian Rogers and Francis Schaeffer and challenge them with the evidence for the Bible’s historicity and the claims of the gospel. Usually I would send them a cassette tape of Adrian Rogers’ messages “6 reasons I know the Bible is True,” “The Final Judgement,” “Who is Jesus?” and the message by Bill Elliff, “How to get a pure heart.”  I would also send them printed material from the works of Francis Schaeffer and a personal apologetic letter from me addressing some of the issues in their work. My second cassette tape that I sent to both Antony Flew and George Wald was Adrian Rogers’ sermon on evolution and here below you can watch that very sermon on You Tube.   Carl Sagan also took time to correspond with me about a year before he died. 

(Francis Schaeffer pictured below)

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Adrian Rogers pictured below

I have posted on Adrian Rogers’ messages on Evolution before but here is a complete message on it.

Evolution: Fact of Fiction? By Adrian Rogers

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Featured artist is Matthew Ritchie

 

Matthew Ritchie is pictured below:

 Matthew Ritchie

Matthew Ritchie

Ritchie is about creating randomness and chance in the art.

Matthew Ritchie: “The Morning Line” | Art21 “Exclusive”

Uploaded on Sep 4, 2008

Episode #027: Matthew Ritchie discusses his upcoming exhibition “The Morning Line” (2008) in his New York studio, with animated architectural schematics of the installation. “The Morning Line” will be on view October 2, 2008 – January 11, 2009 at the Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo in Seville, Spain, as part of the 3rd Bienal Internacional de Arte Contemporáneo de Seville.

Matthew Ritchie’s artistic mission has been no less ambitious than an attempt to represent the entire universe and the structures of knowledge and belief that we use to understand and visualize it. Ritchie’s encyclopedic project (continually expanding and evolving like the universe itself) stems from his imagination, and is cataloged in a conceptual chart replete with allusions drawn from Judeo-Christian religion, occult practices, Gnostic traditions, and scientific elements and principles.

Matthew Ritchie is featured in the Season 3 (2005) episode Structures of the Art:21—Art in the Twenty-First Century television series on PBS.

DISCUSS: What do you think about this video? Leave a comment!

Learn more about Matthew Ritchie: http://www.art21.org/artists/matthew-…

VIDEO | Producer: Eve Moros Ortega and Nick Ravich. Camera: Joel Shapiro. Sound: Judy Karp. Editor: Mary Ann Toman. Artwork Courtesy: Matthew Ritchie and Aranda/Lasch. Thanks: Benjamin Aranda.

 Matthew Ritchie

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About Matthew Ritchie

Matthew Ritchie was born in London, England, in 1964, and lives and works in New York. He received a BFA from Camberwell School of Art, London, and attended Boston University. His artistic mission has been no less ambitious than an attempt to represent the entire universe and the structures of knowledge and belief that we use to understand and visualize it. Ritchie’s encyclopedic project (continually expanding and evolving, like the universe itself) stems from his imagination, and is catalogued in a conceptual chart replete with allusions drawn from Judeo-Christian religion, occult practices, Gnostic traditions, and scientific elements and principles. Ritchie’s paintings, installations, and narrative threads delineate the universe’s formation as well as the attempts and limits of human consciousness to comprehend its vastness. Ritchie’s work deals explicitly with the idea of information being “on the surface,” and information is also the subject of his work. Although often described as a painter, Ritchie creates works on paper, prints, light-box drawings, floor-to-wall installations, freestanding sculpture, websites, and short stories, which tie his sprawling works together into a narrative structure. Drawing is central to his work. He scans his drawings into the computer so that images can be enlarged, taken apart, made smaller or three-dimensional, reshaped, transformed into digital games, or given to someone else to execute. One ongoing work that Ritchie calls “an endless drawing” contains everything he has drawn before. Ritchie’s work has been shown in one-person exhibitions at Dallas Museum of Art; Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston; Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami; among others. His work was also exhibited at the Whitney Biennial (1997), Sydney Biennale (2002), and Bienal de São Paulo (2004).

Matthew Ritchie

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Matthew Ritchie (* 1964[1]) attended the Camberwell School of Art 1983 to 1986. He describes himself as “classically trained” but also points to a minimalist influence. His art revolves around a personal mythology drawn from creation mythsparticle physicsthermodynamics, and games of chance, among other elements.

Ritchie is married to Garland Hunter, an artist and actress who appeared in The Tao of Steve.

Education and early career

Matthew Ritchie was born in the suburbs of LondonEngland in 1964. Ritchie received his BFA from London’s Camberwell School of Art, in the years of 1983-86. He also spent a year enrolled at Boston University in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1982. Ritchie has established himself in the contemporary fine arts scene since the early 90s, and had his first group exhibition in 1990 at the Judy Nielsen Gallery in Chicago, Illinois. Ritchie’s first solo show, “Working Model,” was shown in New York’s Basilico Fine Arts from February 18-March 18 in 1995. This series of paintings, wall drawings, and sculptures introduced Ritchie into the contemporary genre as an artist who “brought together historically and ideologically different belief systems in an attempt to show their common thread.” .”.[2] Regardless of the medium or material Ritchie uses, all of his work collaborates into a complex meta-narrative structure.

Art Process

Ritchie is often seen foremost as a painter, but his work lies mainly in drawing. Ritchie scans his drawings into the computer so he can manipulate them by blowing them up, deconstructing them, and/or transforming them into three-dimensional pieces. He digitally makes his images smaller and larger in order to further develop his ideas beyond paper. In an interview with Art: 21, Ritchie explains his drawing process here: “I start with a collection of ideas…and I draw out all these different motifs, and then I lay them on top of each other. So I have piles of semi-transparent drawings all layered on top of each other in my studio and they form a kind of tunnel of information. Out of that, you can pull this form that turns into the sculpture or the painting. It’s literally like pulling the narrative out of overlaying all of the structures. That’s how I end up with this structure. It’s derived from a series of drawings that I scan into the computer and refine through various processes…and send to the sheet-metal shop down the road where it’s cut out of metal and assembled into larger structures which are too big for my studio.” This method allows Ritchie to reshape his images into sculptures, floor-to-wall installations, interactive web sites, and short stories.

Art-Making Philosophy

Ritchie draws from numerous meta-narratives that explore religionphilosophy, and science in order to create his complicated, yet freshly simple works. “Influenced by everything from the mythic escapades of comic-book superheroes and pagan gods to the meta-narratives of philosophy, religion, and science, Ritchie has developed a mythical narrative or cosmology of his own, and his art is communicated via a variety of art spaces and installations, including galleries throughout the world and the World Wide Web.”[3] In an interview with Art: 21, Ritchie states that he reads Nature Magazine, which is a weekly journal that publishes technical articles about contemporary scientific findings. Ritchie’s pieces have a scientific nature to them, but do not solely represent scientific agenda. Instead, his work investigates the role of science within society, creating a narrative between order and chaos. In Ritchie’s Art: 21 interviews, he explains his interest in science as “a way of having a conversation that’s based on an idea of looking at things than I am in the rhetoric around science.” In other words, Ritchie is not trying to depict scientific data accurately. He uses his research in order to find topics that are important to him, to which he then illustrates in his work. Ritchie’s work tends to include various references that expand into a comprehensive explanation historical experience or knowledge. His meta-narratives combine all of the philosophies that interest him, and place them into a structure of information that can be bombarding, but seem to be able to go on endlessly. His work deals with the theme of information. Ritchie explains this theme with a few rhetorical questions and statements: “…for me the theme of my new structure was information, how do you deal with it? As a person is it possible for you to grasp everything and see everything? You’re presented with everything and all through your life you’re trying to filter out, you’re really just trying to control that flow.” These questions posed by Ritchie rightfully describe his thought process while creating his art, allowing the viewer to better understand his pieces beyond their aesthetic characteristics.

Interactive Work

Aside from the artist’s gallery work, Ritchie’s investigation of New Media has further developed his universal narrative into the interactive realm. In 2001, Ritchie was commissioned by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art to be a part of e.space, which was created to examine art forms that can only exist on the World Wide Web. Ritchie, along with six other artists: Erik AdigardLynn HershmanYael KanarekMark NapierThomson & Craighead, and Julia Scher, created stories that could only be told through the computer screen. Before his collaboration with the SFMOMA, Ritchie developed his first interactive piece in 1996 with the help of äda ‘web, a research and development platform that services artists in order to create online interactive projects. In his piece titled, The Hard Way, Ritchie combines several of his previous projects into an interactive site that allow the viewer to navigate through the website, experiencing the narrative by following Ritchie’s imagined avatars that represent infamous personality traits that can be found throughout our own history. Through his text, drawings, and computer-animated realms, The Hard Way serves as a prequel to his piece with the SFMOMA, titled, The New Place. The New Place was created in 2001, and is entwined with Ritchie’s larger project, Proposition Player. The New Place includes mediums outside the web, using sculpture, painting, computer games, and other forms that are not yet defined in this “very large cross-media plan,” serving as a trailer of sorts, previewing things to come.[4] The Proposition Player was created in 2003 for the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art. This piece explores Ritchie’s thoughts on gambling and quantum mechanics, and the illusions that come along with the elements of chance and risk. Ritchie explains the motive behind this piece here in his 2005 interview with Art: 21: “It’s about the idea that in the moment between placing your bet and the result of the bet there is a kind of infinite freedom because all the possibilities are there. “You may already be a winner!” It’s fantastic—you’re like a god! Everything opens up.” This exhibition asked the audience to take part, and “play” Ritchie’s invented game. Visitors were given a playing card by the exhibition guard, in which they would use to take part within Ritchie’s proposition game. Outside of the exhibition’s context, these cards could function as a usable deck of cards, since hey attribute all of the traditional suits, even including the joker. But in Ritchie’s context, each card symbolized one of the 49 characteristics that Ritchie used to create a story that described the evolution of the entire universe.

Historical Context

The compositions of Ritchie’s works reference the Expressionist artists at the start of the 20th-century, but differ from his predecessors in their tightness and linearity. His abstracted narrative work fits into the same category of the work of contemporary artists such as Matthew Barney and Bonnie Collura. Like these two artists, Ritchie draws upon philosophical, religious, and scientific narratives to create a complex universe where these theories can be circulated amongst one another. In these artists’ works, webs of data are formed in artistic compositions that reference the questions that society continues to base their meaning of existence on. Ritchie’s work personifies these questions into art.

Connection with New Media

Ritchie’s interactive work is linked to the forerunners of New Media, which began to take shape as an art form in the late 1980s. New Media manipulates the medium of digital art, and uses the technology itself as the medium. Through the writings of individuals such as Lev ManovichMarshall McLuhan, and Roy AscottNew Media has been defined, and allotted for artists such as Ritchie to explore and create within the realm of interactive art. The interaction between online databases and meta-narrative structures are discussed in Christiane Paul’s 2004 essay, The Database as System and Cultural Form: Anatomies of Cultural Narratives. This essay sheds further light on meta-narrative structure within the premise of New Media. Paul describes this connection here: “databases do lend themselves to a categorization of information and narratives that can then be filtered to create meta-narratives about the construction and cultural specifics of the original material.”.[5] Similar to past New Media artists, Ritchie’s interactive works originates from his invented meta-narratives, and are then coded into the online database.

Major Exhibitions

Ritchie has had over twenty-five solo exhibitions throughout his career. His first solo show was in 1995, at the Basilico Fine Arts in New York, New York. Ritchie’s work has been exhibited at the Dallas Museum of Art; the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston; the Museum of Contemporary Art, MiamiMASS MoCA; the SFMoMA; The Guggenheim, and the MoMA, among others. His work has also been a part of the 1997 Whitney Biennial, the 2002 Sydney Biennale, and the 2004 São Paulo Art Biennial. Ritchie has also been involved in over 100 group exhibitions since 1990 at an international level. The Andrea Rosen Gallery, located at 525 West 24th Street in New York City, currently represents Ritchie.

The Andrea Rosen Gallery represents other well-established artists such as Walker EvansFelix Gonzalez-TorresJohn Currin, and Wolfgang Tillmans.[6] Ritchie currently lives and works in New York City.

References

External links

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Matthew Ritchie’s work below:

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I sent a cassette tape of Adrian Rogers on Evolution to John Hospers in May of 1994 which was the 10th anniversary of Francis Schaeffer’s passing and I promptly received a typed two page response from Dr. John Hospers. Dr. Hospers had both read my letter and all the inserts plus listened to the whole sermon and had some very angry responses. If you would like to hear the sermon from Adrian Rogers and read the transcript then refer to my earlier post at this link.  Over the last few weeks I have posted  portions of Dr. Hospers’ letter and portions of the cassette tape that he listened to back in 1994, but today I want  to look at some other comments made on that cassette tape that John Hospers listened to and I will also post a few comments that Dr. Hospers made in that 2 page letter.

John Hospers on His Friendship with Ayn Rand

 

Conversations With Ayn Rand Part 1

by John Hospers

 

At the same time, she was an inspiration to me. It was inspiring to talk with someone to whom ideas so vitally mattered. By presenting intellectual challenges she set my intellectual fires crackling in a new way. And she was largely responsible for renewing my spirits. I never got bored with teaching — I always enjoyed contact with students — but I had become discouraged about its results. A class ends, I seldom hear from the students again, and a new crop comes in with all the same errors and unquestioned prejudices and assumptions as the one before. I suppose this was to be expected, but I was often discouraged by the lack of improvement. Doubtless I could have noticed some if I had been able to follow the members of the class after they had had my courses. And as for changing the world from its ignorance and lethargy, there seemed little hope of this occurring; all the combined efforts of high school and college teachers seemed to do little to prevent wars or create happiness or even ease the human situation very much.

So I was surprised when Ayn said, “Yours is the most important profession in the world.”

I responded, “Important, but not very influential.”

“That’s where you’re wrong,” she said. “You deal in ideas, and ideas rule the world.” (I seldom quote Ayn directly, and do so only when I clearly remember exactly what she said.)

I objected rather lamely that I didn’t see any ideas molding the world, in fact that the world seemed quite indifferent to ideas. But she persisted that it was indeed ideas that ruled the world — and that if good ideas did not come to the fore, bad ones would rule instead. Nature abhors a vacuum, and it is when good ideas are not taught that a Hitler or a Lenin can come in, filling the vacuum, trying to justify the use of force (for example) against entire classes of victims, when even a modest amount of teaching about human rights would have shifted the battle of ideas and perhaps carried the day. She reiterated that it was ideas — specifically the ideas underlying the American Revolution — that had created the greatness of America. Prosperity had been a consequence of the adoption of these ideas; it occurred when physical labor was animated by an economic theory by which the work could be productive.

We came back to the subject many times, and I began to notice a new energy in my teaching, a new bounce in my attitude, as if the intellectual life was not fruitless after all, and as if I might even make a bit of real difference in the world. Not much in the whole scheme of things, to be sure; but later, when ex-students would say to me, “My whole life has been changed by your course,” or “Something you said at the end of your lecture one day years ago changed me forever,” the words not only buoyed me up, but made me aware of a fearsome responsibility. I don’t know whether I ever communicated to Ayn this gradual change in my professional attitude. In a way, she had saved my life. I wondered, much later, whether she ever knew this.

She did not take kindly to any recommended change in her writing, not even a single word. I was strongly in sympathy with this. Even if a word was appropriate in what it meant, it might not fit into the rhythm of the sentence or the idiom of the passage. But there is one occasion on which she gave way to me nonetheless. She showed me the typescript of her forthcoming introduction to Victor Hugo’s novel 1793. I then proceeded to read certain passages of it aloud to her. By this means, I convinced her that some passages were unidiomatic, and that certain words hindered the ambience rather than helping it. She went along with all my recommended changes. “Boy, do you have a feeling for words,” she said glowingly as she made the changes.

She was convinced that on my forthcoming trip to California I should call on her Hollywood producer, Hal Wallis. “He’s a movie producer,” I said; “I would have nothing to say to him. And he’d be about as interested in me as in a hole in the ground.”

Not so, she said. She said I had no idea what an intellectual inferiority complex these people have. “To have a philosopher come to them would be an honor to them,” she insisted.

But I had no idea what I would say if I did go; I would probably stand there with a mouthful of teeth. (And I never did follow her suggestion.) “Well, maybe I could write the script for the movie Atlas Shrugged,” I said, more than half in jest.

But at once she put her foot down, though in good humor. “Nathaniel Branden is going to write the script for Atlas Shrugged,” she said decisively, and that was that.

She reserved her best-chosen curse words for her philosophical arch-enemy, Immanuel Kant. She considered him the ultimate altruist and collectivist. Though not a Kantian, I did not share her extreme view of him. I invited her to read his book on philosophy of law, with its defense of individual rights, and certain sections of hisMetaphysics of Morals in which he discussed duties to oneself. But it was all in vain. She insisted that these were only incidental details, but that the main thrust of Kant’s philosophy was profoundly evil. I did not consider him more altruistic than Christianity, and in some ways less so.

I did get her to acknowledge agreement, I think, with Kant’s Second Categorical Imperative, “Treat every person as an end, not as a means,” even though I tended to believe that the implications of this precept for ethical egoism might be ominous. And I told her that I thought she was also Kantian in her insistence on acting on principle(even though she and he didn’t share the same principles). I even thought that she shared some of his emphasis on universalizability: that if something is wrong for you to do it is also wrong for others (in similar circumstances), and that before acting one should consider the rule implied in one’s actions as it if were to become a universalrule of human conduct. She would praise impartiality of judgment as strongly as any Kantian. Sometimes, when we were discussing another view, such as existentialism, I would twit her, saying “You’re too Kantian to accept that, Ayn,” and she would smile and sometimes incline her head a bit, as if to admit the point before going on with the discussion.

The more I thought about it, the more I was convinced that the most fundamental distinction in practical ethics was between individualism and collectivism. Consider the American Civil War, I said. Assuming that it played a decisive role in eliminating slavery, wasn’t the result worth the loss of half a million lives? Yet it may well not have been worth it to the men who were drafted into the army to fight that war. The fact that it “helped the group” (the collective) may not have been much comfort to them.

Or consider the American Revolutionary War. It produced an enormous benefit, the founding of a free America, and was the most nearly bloodless of all major revolutions. Yet was it “worth it” to those who shed their blood fighting in the cause of independence? If you look at the group as a whole, the group was better off because those wars were fought; we’re glad that somebody did it. But if you look at theindividuals, it was a case of some individuals sacrificing their lives so that others could live in freedom and prosperity.

Ayn’s response was that no human life should be sacrificed against that person’s will. If a person believes a cause to be worth it, such as freedom from slavery or oppression, then he may willingly sacrifice his life for that cause; but no one should be forced to do so. The sacrifices must be made voluntarily.

But are you enlisting voluntarily if you do it because you’ll be drafted anyway later? I wondered. Perhaps voluntariness is a matter of degree. And what if the Germans are invading France and the Germans draft all their young men and the French don’t? Then the French would be overrun and perhaps enslaved. To escape this fate, France institutes the draft. But this example didn’t deter Ayn. Then France is overrun, she said. (The principle of voluntariness must not be violated.) And maybe the prospect that this was going to happen would be sufficient to make most Frenchmen voluntarily enlist.

Image result for john hospers ayn rand

But then, I suggested, there is another problem: what is meant by “voluntary”?

You think about doing something, you deliberate, then do it. Nobody forces you or pressures you. Let’s take this as a paradigm case of voluntary action. On the other hand, someone with a loaded gun at your back says to you, “Your money or your life,” and you surrender your wallet. This is a case of coercion, and ordinarily we’d say you don’t give up your wallet voluntarily.

OK, now the problems begin. What exactly distinguished these cases? Some say that a voluntary act is one of which one can say that just before it one could have done otherwise. Thus the patellar reflex and other reflex actions are not voluntary; you can’t prevent the response.

But all our everyday actions are by that definition voluntary, including our response to the gunman: we could have, just before surrendering the wallet, decided not to surrender it. That was within our power. (Indeed, some would say, “Under the circumstances, you voluntarily chose to give up your money.”) The result of using thisdefinition is that practically all our acts are voluntary, even the robber example used as a paradigm case of not being voluntary. So, I said, let’s take another criterion for voluntariness. With the gunman you can still choose, but your choices are limited by his actions. (You can choose to give your life rather than your money, whereas without his intervention you would have kept both.) The gunman limits your choices. But so does the employer when he fires an employee, or lays him off because the factory is losing money. The employee’s choices are now more limited, limited by the employer’s actions.

But has the employer coerced him? Some would say yes, though he didn’t threaten the employee’s life as in the gunman case. Others would say no, he only limits the employee’s choices. Indeed, the rainfall that prevents you from going to the picnic also limits your choices as to what to do that day. Our choices are limited hundreds of times a day — limited by a wide variety of conditions, human and non-human. (Ouroptions are never limitless in any case.) So that definition won’t distinguish our two paradigm cases from each other; there is something in both cases to limit our choices.

Let’s try another, I persisted: an act is voluntary if it’s not forced. But now what exactly is the import of the verb “force”? Did he force you to give up your wallet, since you could have said no? Is the child whose parents say to him “Kill your pet dog or we’ll never feed you again” forced to kill his dog? Are you ever 100 percent forced, except when you are physically overpowered and literally can’t do anything else?

But very few acts are forced in this sense. When we say “He forced me to go with him,” we need not mean that he physically overpowered her, but rather that he threatened her or even that he “knew what buttons to push” to get her to do what he wanted. Shall we say in that case that she did his bidding voluntarily? No matter which definition we employ, there are cases that seem to slip between the cracks. Thus, saying “He did it voluntarily” doesn’t convey as clear a piece of information as most people think it does.

I concluded that when people say “He did it voluntarily” they usually have no idea of the complexities of meaning that can be plausibly attached to that word; they have no idea which fork in the road they would choose in deciding which meaning of several to take. They just blurt out the word. And that, I suggested, is what philosophicalanalysis is all about — by suggestion and example (“Would you say this is a case of X? No, then perhaps that would be?” etc.) to draw out the meaning behind the words — to pierce the veil of words so as to get a hold on those meanings. But the words constantly obscure this, often in a bewilderingly complex way. Yet it’s important to keep us from blurting out some quick and easy verbal formula. It’s not easy, andtakes a lot of practice; as Brahms said of his second piano concerto, “It’s not a piece for little girls.”

But there it is, the difficulties are there, not only for “voluntary” but for “free” and “caused” and “responsible” and “intentional” (to take a few from just one area of philosophy). These are especially dense philosophical thickets, which require lots of thankless untangling. Most people haven’t the heart or the will to go through with it.  I fear my little lecture was pretty much lost on Ayn. Her philosophical aspirations lay in an entirely different area. And in time the tension between these approaches to doing philosophy is what probably marked the beginning of the end for us.  — Click here for Part 2 –>

(Originally published in Liberty magazIne, 1987)

When most people talked philosophy with Ayn Rand, the relationship was student to teacher. But with Rand and John Hospers, it was philosopher to philosopher.

Here is a portion of Hospers’ June 2, 1994 letter to me: 

Just because I don’t accept your conclusions, do no infer that I have not given these matters deep and profound thought. Why do you ASSUME that I haven’t (which you do when you say “don’t you think it is time to think about spiritual things… etc..)? Why do you start out being so insulting?

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From Adrian Rogers’ LOVE WORTH FINDING website we find this devotion and some of these points were on the cassette tape that I sent to Dr. John Hospers:

The Decision To Become An Atheist

Why does someone decide to become an atheist? Perhaps they’ve been raised in a home where their parents are atheists. Perhaps they started out in life believing in God, but when they prayed about a situation and didn’t get the answer they wanted—or didn’t get it quickly enough—they said, “Well, there must not be a God after all.” Or they decided the problem of why God allows evil in the world is just too great to overcome.

In his message “No Other Way to Heaven except through Jesus,” Adrian Rogers presents the case for belief in God, the reasons many choose unbelief, and the clear, simple path one can take to know that first, there is a God, and then we can know Him personally.

It’s a comprehensive message, one that cannot be reduced to a short article, so we encourage you to hear it in its entirety on June 6-7, or in the broadcast archives on those dates or afterward at our website, www.lwf.org.

In this article, we take one aspect of that extensive message: looking at the path a person may take when they make the choice to become an atheist.

In Romans 1, Paul says (v. 16-20)

For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for itis the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth, to the Jew first and also to the Greek, for therein is the righteousness of God revealed. From faith to faith, as it is written, “the just shall live by faith,” for the wrath of God is revealed from Heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who hold the truth in unrighteousness, because that which may be known of God is manifest in them, for God hath showed it unto them, for the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made,even His eternal power and godhead [and here’s the bottom line], so that they are without excuse.

Every Person Has Some Light

All people have been given have some light about the reality and existence of God. Paul makes that clear.

Imagine that the end of time has come, the time we call “the final judgment.” Standing before the throne are all those who’ve never heard the Gospel of Jesus Christ, as well as those who did hear and rejected it.

The indictment is given,
For the wrath of God is revealed from Heaven against all ungodliness of men who hold the truth in unrighteousness.”

Some say, “Your Honor, we’re not guilty! We never heard the Gospel; we never knew how to be saved. We’re innocent by reason of ignorance.”

Then the Apostle Paul will speak up. He’ll point out, “Your Honor, I will prove they’re not innocent because of ignorance or never had an equal chance. I call two witnesses to testify. Witness number one, take the stand. Give the court your name.”

He says, “My name is Creation.”
“You’re the witness that God exists?”
“Yes. Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them, for God hath showed it unto them, for the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and godhead, so that they are without excuse” (Romans 1:19-20).

Creation testifies, “The Heavens declare the glory of God” Psalm 19:1.

If you have a creation, you have to have a Creator. The Bible says that the Creator “is clearly seen by the things that are made.” When I see a finely tuned piano, I know someone crafted and tuned it. When I see a watch running with precision, I know someone crafted it. When I see a building put together in symmetry, I say, “There is an architect.” When I see this mighty creation, I say, “Creator.” When I see order and system, I say, “Intelligence.” That’s the reason the Bible says, “The fool hath said in his heart, ‘There’s no God’” (Psalm 14:1).

Then Paul will call his second witness.

“My name is Conscience. For when the Gentiles [those who’ve never heard the Gospel], which have not the law,” [Old Testament law], “do by nature the things contained in the law, these having not the law are a law unto themselves, which show the work of the law written in their hearts; their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the meanwhile accusing or else excusing one another.” Romans 2:14.

Two witnesses all people on earth must face: the outward, objective witness of creation and the inward, subjective witness of conscience. “Unto them” is creation, “in them” is conscience. T

Man has a built‑in knowledge of God. God made man to know, love, serve and have fellowship with Him forever. “Christ is that true light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world” (John 1:9).

Augustine said, “The soul of man is restless until it rests in God.” You cannot get around the two witnesses. Creation and conscience testify that no matter who you are or where you are, every person has some light.
Atheists are not in atheists because of intellectual problems. They’re atheists because of moral problems. It’s not a matter of intelligence.
Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.” Romans 1:22

All of us have a God‑consciousness. It’s not a matter of intellectualism; it’s a matter of morality. “The fool hath said in his heart, ‘There is no God’” (Psalm 14:1).

An atheist is someone who is uncomfortable with the existence of God, so he says, “If I can get rid of this idea of God, I can get rid of this uncomfortable feeling.”

But he really doesn’t get rid of it—not down deep. He’s like a man who bought a new boomerang and killed himself trying to throw the old one away. The knowledge that God is just there, and the more you try to get rid of it, the more you know subconsciously God exists, because deep in your heart, conscience speaks.

Light Refused Increases Darkness

There is great danger in refusing the light we’ve been given.

They are without excuse, because when they knew God [by creation and conscience they knew God exists], they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful, but became vain in their imaginations and their foolish heart wasdarkened.”

Darkened.
All mankind has some light. Light refused increases darkness.

You cannot simply take light or truth and put it in your pocket and say, “That’s very interesting, I’ll spend it someday if I need it.” No, when God gives you light, when creation and conscience speak to the heart of any individual anywhere on earth, if they do not glorify God, believe there is a God, and desire to know Him, they do not remain static. They begin to regress. And they lose even the light that they had. Their foolish heart will be darkened.

Watch carefully here. I pray you won’t miss what I’m about to say. In the Bible, the opposite of truth is not error, it is sin. Why does a person refuse truth? Because of the sin in his heart.

For the wrath of God is revealed from Heaven against all ungodlinessand unrighteousness of men who hold the truth in unrighteousness” (v. 18)

The word “hold” literally means to resist the truth; suppress, smother, hold back the truth. How do you hold back the truth? Not in error, but in unrighteousness.

Why Does A Person Not Believe In God?

Belief in God means they have to adjust their lifestyle. On the one hand, on one side is the person’s unrighteous lifestyle. On the other side are creation and conscience.  Creation and conscience tell him there’s a God. His lifestyle says, “If you admit that, you’re going to have to change how you’re living.”

He’s in a quandary between the two. If he turns toward acknowledging God, he turns from that lifestyle; but if he turns away from truth, he’s free to embrace his old lifestyle. So when he says, “I will resist the truth in unrighteousness,” and turns away, he gets farther from the truth, father from the light, into the darkness, and “his foolish heart is darkened.”

Unbelief Is the Baggage That Comes With Sin

This truth is never more graphically illustrated than in 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12, a most terrifying passage in the Bible. It speaks of the Antichrist who is coming:

Even him whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish because”—note—“they received not the love of the truth that they might be saved.”

Why do they perish?
For this cause God shall send them strong delusion.” (v. 11)

You say, “Hold it, Pastor! God doesn’t send anybody delusion.”  Go back and read verse 11. Why would God send them strong delusion? Verse 11 continues, “That they should believe a lie.”

It’s getting worse, isn’t it? God sends delusion “that they should believe a lie” What is the end result?  “…that they all might be damnedwho believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” (v. 12)

There in that last phrase is your key: they had the truth, they saw it, yet they chose to “believe not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”

They heard the truth! They knew the truth! They turned from the truth! They pleasure in their sin! They looked at God, they looked at their sin, and they chose their sin.

God responds, “All right. That’s what you want. You want your sin, and the baggage that comes with it is delusion, a lie, and damnation.”

How does this compute with the verse, “God is not willing that any should perish”?

He is not willing. But He also will not violate a person’s free will. I have often observed,

You are free to choose.
You are not free not to choose.
You are also not free to choose the consequences of your choice.

Again, the problem is not in the head. The problem is in the heart. One of the greatest promises in the Bible is John 7:17. People were wondering, “Who is Jesus Christ?” The Pharisees were testing Him, taunting Him, picking at Him. Jesus responded, “My doctrine is not Mine, but His who sent Me.” Then He threw out one of the greatest challenges in the Bible:

If any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God or whether I speak of Myself,” in other words, “whether I’m just some megalomaniac, some peasant prophet who has a messianic complex, or if I have come from God.”

Do you will to do the will of God? If you do, and if you take up this challenge, then you will know.

 

How can I know the Bible is the Word of God? by Adrian Rogers

________________________

 

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Is the Bible historically accurate? Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.

 The Bible and Archaeology – Is the Bible from God? (Kyle Butt)

______________________

During the 1990′s I actually made it a practice to write famous atheists and scientists that were mentioned by Adrian Rogers and Francis Schaeffer and challenge them with the evidence for the Bible’s historicity and the claims of the gospel. Usually I would send them a cassette tape of Adrian Rogers’ messages “6 reasons I know the Bible is True,” “The Final Judgement,” “Who is Jesus?” and the message by Bill Elliff, “How to get a pure heart.”  I would also send them printed material from the works of Francis Schaeffer and a personal apologetic letter from me addressing some of the issues in their work. My second cassette tape that I sent to both Antony Flew and George Wald was Adrian Rogers’ sermon on evolution and here below you can watch that very sermon on You Tube.   Carl Sagan also took time to correspond with me about a year before he died. 

(Francis Schaeffer pictured below)

Image result for francis schaeffer

Adrian Rogers pictured below

I have posted on Adrian Rogers’ messages on Evolution before but here is a complete message on it.

Evolution: Fact of Fiction? By Adrian Rogers

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Featured artist is Michael Heizer

Michael Heizer

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Michael Heizer
Born 1944 (age 71–72)
Berkeley, California
Nationality American
Education San Francisco Art Institute
Known for Land art, sculpture

Michael Heizer is a contemporary artist specializing in large-scale sculptures and earth art (or land art). He currently lives and works in Hiko, Nevada.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Michael Heizer was born in Berkeley, California in 1944, the son of the distinguished University of California, Berkeley archaeologist Dr. Robert Heizer. He spent one year of high school in France.[2] He attended the San Francisco Art Institute (1963–64) and moved to New York City (1966), where he found a loft on Mercer Street in SoHo and began producing conventional, small-scale paintings and sculptures….

Work[edit]

In the late 1960s, Heizer left New York City for the deserts of California and Nevada, where he began to produce large-scale works that could not fit into a museum setting and could only possibly be displayed through photographs. In 1967, he completed North, East, South, West 1, which included several holes he dug in the Sierra Nevada, the holes akin to the shapes in his paintings.[2] In 1969, Heizer made the series Primitive dye paintings, in which bright big bags of white lime powder and concentrated aniline dyes were spread over the dry desert landscape, covering large areas that, when viewed from the air, formed amorphous, organic shapes.[2] Later that year, Heizer began to create “negative” sculptures by cutting directly into the earth.[1] Made in 1968, Heizer’s Nine Nevada Depressions series of pieces was located primarily on dry lakes throughout the state, comprising a 520-mile earthwork. Jean Dry Lake, south of Las Vegas, has totally absorbed Heizer’s “Rift 1”, a zig-zag trench dug into the lake surface in 1968, as the first of the Nine Nevada Depressions.[3] Dissipate consisted of five small trenches lined in wood, inserted into the playa at the Black Rock Desert.[4] Isolated Mass/Circumflex, the ninth piece, is a circular loop made in a dry lake bed surface at Massacre Dry Lake, near Vya, Nevada.[5] Heizer displaced 6 tons of earth, making a one-foot-wide trench, 120 feet long, with the loop being 12 feet in diameter. This culminated in the production of Double Negative in 1969 and 1970, a project for which he displaced 240,000 tons of rock in the Nevada desert, cutting two enormous trenches—each one 50-feet-deep and 30-feet-wide and together spanning 1,500 feet—at the eastern edge of Mormon Mesa near Overton, Nevada.[6]

Since then, Heizer has continued his exploration of earthworks. His Adjacent, Against, Upon (1976) juxtaposes three large granite slabs in different relationships to cast concrete forms; the 30-50 ton granite slabs were quarried in the Cascade Mountain Range and transported by barge and train to Myrtle Edwards Park.[7] For “Displaced/Replaced Mass” (1969/1977), later installed outside the Marina del Rey, California, home of Roy and Carol Doumani, he planted four granite boulders of different sizes from the High Sierra into lid-less concrete boxes in the earth so that the tops of the rocks are roughly level with the ground.[8] For a 1982 work at the former IBM Building in New York, Heizer sheared off the top of a large rock and cut grooves into the surface before setting it on supports hidden within a stainless steel structure. Designed as a fountain, the boulder appears to float over running water. He called it Levitated Mass, a title he would use for later works as well.[8] Commissioned by the president of the Ottawa Silica Company, the Effigy Tumuli earthwork in Illinois is composed of five abstract animal earthworks reclaiming the site of an abandoned surface coal mine along the Illinois River; the shapes (1983–85)—a frog, a water strider, a catfish, a turtle, and a snake—reflect the environment of the site, which overlooks the river.

Since the late 1990s, Heizer’s work has focused primarily on City, an enormous complex in the rural desert of Lincoln County, Nevada. His work on the project continues to this day, supported by the Dia Art Foundation through a grant from the Lannan Foundation. In 1970, Heizer hired G. Robert Deiro, a pilot from Las Vegas, to help him find the property.[2] In 1972, he acquired land in Garden Valley, near the border with Nye County, and began work on the first part. He finished Complex One in 1974, working mostly alone, using a paddle-wheel scraper a farmer lent him and following plans drawn up by seismic engineers.[9] While working on the first parts of the project, he gradually acquired three square miles, at $30 an acre; the last parcel was paid off in 1997.[2] City is not yet available to the public.

A campaign to have the Basin and Range area around City designated as a national monument to protect it from development took place, and a group of American museums, including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), the Museum of Modern Art, the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston and the Walker Art Center, have joined together to draw public attention to a petition urging preservation of the area.[10][11] In July 2015, President Barack Obama signed a proclamation (using his authority under the Antiquities Act of 1906) creating the Basin and Range National Monument on 704,000 acres in Lincoln and Nye counties, an area including Heizer’s City.[12][13]

Heizer’s latest project, Levitated Mass (2012), was for LACMA. He tried to build it in 1969 with a smaller boulder, but the crane attempting to lift it snapped.[14] It was not until 2005 that he discovered an appropriate boulder, when a routine blast at Stone Valley Quarry in Riverside County, California, produced the piece he had imagined, and the project started coming together.[15] LACMA’s director Michael Govan first visited the site in 1994 as director of Dia:Beacon. Since then, Govan has become Heizer’s greatest ally in the art world, raising $10 million from private donors to realize Levitated Mass and serving as a spokesman for the artist.[8] It took eleven nights, from February 28 to March 10, 2012, to move the 340-ton rock from Jurupa Valley to the museum. The granite boulder (21.5 feet wide and 21.5 feet high) is installed atop a 456-foot-long trench, which allows people to walk under it. The long channel, descending to a depth of 15 feet, is encircled by a lozenge-shaped line of weathering steel embedded in the earth and rusting to a velvety brown. The installation is situated in a field of polished concrete slices, set at a slight angle between the Resnick Pavilion and Sixth Street.[16] Heizer opened the exhibit on June 24, 2012.[17] A feature documentary,[18] also named “Levitated Mass,” was directed and edited by the filmmaker Doug Pray. It details the making of the sculpture as it relates to Heizer’s career, while portraying the boulder’s 105-mile journey through Los Angeles and the public’s reaction to its installation. The film premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival in June 2013 [19] and opened theatrically at the Landmark’s Nuart Theater in Los Angeles, CA on September 5, 2014.[20] Heizer’s most recent work is Tangential Circular Negative Line in Mauvoisin, Switzerland, commissioned by Fondation Air&Art directed by Jean Maurice Varone.

Heizer has also produced a number of abstract paintings, and his large-scale sculptures, often inspired by Native American forms, can be found in museums and public spaces worldwide.

Major permanent commissions[edit]

  • Tangential Circular Negative Line (2012), Mauvoisin, Switzerland, an Air&Art Foundation commission directed by Jean Maurice Varone

The Rock installation in LACMA’s backyard

Other works[edit]

Exhibitions[edit]

In 1968, Heizer was included in Earth Works, the influential group show at Virginia Dwan‘s gallery, and then in the Whitney Museum painting annual in 1969, where his contribution was a huge photograph of a dye painting in the desert.[9] For his first one-person show, at the Galerie Heiner Friedrich, Munich in 1969, he removed 1,000 tons of earth in a conical shape to create Munich Depression. In 1977, he was included in documenta 6, Kassel. Major exhibitions of his work have been staged at institutions such as the Museum Folkwang, Essen (1979), the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (1984), and Fondazione Prada, Milan (1996).[22]

Homages[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jump up to:a b Michael Heizer National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
  2. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e Michael Kimmelman (December 12, 1999), A Sculptor’s Colossus of the Desert New York Times.
  3. Jump up^ Michael Heizer, “Rift 1” (1968-72) Center for Land Use Interpretation, Los Angeles.
  4. Jump up^ Michael Heizer, Dissipate (1968-72) Center for Land Use Interpretation, Los Angeles.
  5. Jump up^ Michael Heizer, Isolated Mass/Circumflex (#2) (1968-72) Center for Land Use Interpretation, Los Angeles.
  6. Jump up^ Christopher Knight (June 3, 2012), Art review: ‘Ends of the Earth’ brings Land art indoors Los Angeles Times.
  7. Jump up^ Michael Heizer, Adjacent, Against, Upon (1976) Seattle Public Art
  8. ^ Jump up to:a b c Jori Finkel (May 25, 2012), Michael Heizer’s calling is set in stone Los Angeles Times.
  9. ^ Jump up to:a b Michael Kimmelman (February 6, 2005), Art’s Last, Lonely Cowboy New York Times.
  10. Jump up^ Tennent, Scott (18 March 2015). “Protect Michael Heizer’s “City””. LACMA. Retrieved 19 March 2015.
  11. Jump up^ Burns, Charlotte (18 March 2015). “Museums unite in campaign to save massive land art project”. The Art Newspaper. Retrieved 19 March 2015.
  12. Jump up^ Steve Tetreault & Henry Brean, A done deal, Obama to create Basin and Range monument, Las Vegas Review-Journal (July 9, 2015).
  13. Jump up^ Mascaro, Lisa (December 20, 2016). “The artist and the senator: One built a desert masterpiece, the other a Nevada legacy”. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 27 December 2016.
  14. Jump up^ Danielle Paquette (June 24, 2012), It’s opening day for Michael Heizer’s ‘Levitated Mass’ at LACMA Los Angeles Times.
  15. Jump up^ Ina Jaffe (June 20, 2012), 340 Tons Of Art: ‘Levitated Mass’ To Rock L.A. NPR.
  16. Jump up^ Christopher Knight (June 22, 2012), Review: LACMA’s new hunk ‘Levitated Mass’ has some substance Los Angeles Times.
  17. Jump up^ Deborah Vankin (September 22, 2011), LACMA set to roll away the stone Los Angeles Times.
  18. Jump up^ The Boulder (Doug Pray/Jamie Patricof)
  19. Jump up^ http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/review/levitated-mass-laff-review-573330
  20. Jump up^ BWW Movies News Desk
  21. Jump up^ Christopher Knight, A rock star is born–or is it?, Los Angeles Times, March 13, 2012
  22. Jump up^ Michael Heizer Dia Art Foundation.
  23. Jump up^ Aspen Art Museum, July 4, 2012, exhibition
  24. Jump up^ Observatoire du Land Art, Feb 29 – March 10, 2012, transatlantic action
  25. Jump up^ Greg Kucera Gallery http://www.gregkucera.com/_images/daws/daws_life-on-the-farm-heizer_web.jpg

External links[edit]

Michael Heizer arkin michael heizer dissipate 8 of nine nevada

Land art celebrating the work of michael heizer robert smithson and walter de maria

Early life and education

Michael Heizer Michael Heizer Effigy Tumuli Enviromental Art

Michael Heizer was born in Berkeley, California, in 1944, the son of the distinguished University of California, Berkeley archaeologist Dr. Robert Heizer. He spent a year in high school, in France. He attended the San Francisco Art Institute (1963–64) and moved to New York City (1966), where he found a loft on Mercer Street in SoHo and began producing conventional, small-scale paintings and sculptures.

Work

Michael Heizer 1960 MICHAEL HEIZER COMPLEX CITY Bronzo Reader

In the late 1960s, Heizer left New York City for the deserts of California and Nevada, where he began to produce large-scale works that could not fit into a museum setting, except perhaps in photographs. In 1967, he completed North, East, South, West 1, which included several holes he dug in the Sierra Nevada, the holes akin to the shapes in his paintings. In 1969, Heizer made the series Primitive dye paintings, in which bright big bags of white lime powder and concentrated aniline dyes were spread over the dry desert landscape, covering large areas that, when viewed from the air, formed amorphous, organic shapes. Later that year, Heizer began to create “negative” sculptures by cutting directly into the earth. Made in 1968, Heizer’s Nine Nevada Depressions series of pieces was located primarily on dry lakes throughout the state, comprising a 520-mile earthwork. Jean Dry Lake, south of Las Vegas, has totally absorbed Heizer’s “Rift 1”, a zig-zag trench dug into the lake surface in 1968, as the first of the Nine Nevada Depressions. Dissipate consisted of five small trenches lined in wood, inserted into the playa at the Black Rock Desert. Isolated Mass/Circumflex, the ninth piece, is a circular loop made in a dry lake bed surface at Massacre Dry Lake, near Vya, Nevada. Heizer displaced 6 tons of earth, making a one-foot-wide trench, 120 feet long, with the loop being 12 feet in diameter. This culminated in the production of Double Negative in 1969 and 1970, a project for which he displaced 240,000 tons of rock in the Nevada desert, cutting two enormous trenches—each one 50-feet-deep and 30-feet-wide and together spanning 1,500 feet—at the eastern edge of Mormon Mesa near Overton, Nevada.

Michael Heizer troublemakersthefilmcomwpcontentuploads20140

Since then, Heizer has continued his exploration of earthworks. His Adjacent, Against, Upon (1976) juxtaposes three large granite slabs in different relationships to cast concrete forms; the 30-50 ton granite slabs were quarried in the Cascade Mountain Range and transported by barge and train to Myrtle Edwards Park. For “Displaced/Replaced Mass” (1969/1977), later installed outside the Marina del Rey, California, home of Roy and Carol Doumani, he planted four granite boulders of different sizes from the High Sierra into lid-less concrete boxes in the earth so that the tops of the rocks are roughly level with the ground. For a 1982 work at the former IBM Building in New York, Heizer sheared off the top of a large rock and cut grooves into the surface before setting it on supports hidden within a stainless steel structure. Designed as a fountain, the boulder appears to float over running water. He called it Levitated Mass, a title he would use for later works as well. Commissioned by the president of the Ottawa Silica Company, the Effigy Tumuli earthwork in Illinois is composed of five abstract animal earthworks reclaiming the site of an abandoned surface coal mine along the Illinois River; the shapes (1983–85)—a frog, a water strider, a catfish, a turtle, and a snake—reflect the environment of the site, which overlooks the river.

Michael Heizer Artist Michael Heizer in the Nevada desert for 43 years

Since the late 1990s, Heizer’s work has focused primarily on City, an enormous complex in the rural desert of Lincoln County, Nevada. His work on the project continues to this day, supported by the Dia Art Foundation through a grant from the Lannan Foundation. In 1970, Heizer hired G. Robert Deiro, a pilot from Las Vegas, to help him find the property. In 1972, he acquired land in Garden Valley, near the border with Nye County, and began work on the first part. He finished Complex One in 1974, working mostly alone, using a paddle-wheel scraper a farmer lent him and following plans drawn up by seismic engineers. While working on the first parts of the project, he gradually acquired three square miles, at $30 an acre; the last parcel was paid off in 1997. City is not yet available to the public.

Michael Heizer seeds Michael Heizer Landart artist USA

A campaign to have the Basin and Range area around City designated as a national monument to protect it from development took place, and a group of American museums, including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), the Museum of Modern Art, the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston and the Walker Art Center, have joined together to draw public attention to a petition urging preservation of the area. In July 2015, President Barack Obama signed a proclamation (using his authority under the Antiquities Act of 1906) creating the Basin and Range National Monument on 704,000 acres in Lincoln and Nye counties, an area including Heizer’s City.

Heizer’s latest project, Levitated Mass (2012), was for LACMA. He tried to build it in 1969 with a smaller boulder, but the crane attempting to lift it snapped. It was not until 2005 that he discovered an appropriate boulder, when a routine blast at Stone Valley Quarry in Riverside County, California, produced the piece he had imagined, and the project started coming together. LACMA’s director Michael Govan first visited the site in 1994 as director of Dia:Beacon. Since then, Govan has become Heizer’s greatest ally in the art world, raising $10 million from private donors to realize Levitated Mass and serving as a spokesman for the artist. It took eleven nights, from February 28 to March 10, 2012, to move the 340-ton rock from Jurupa Valley to the museum. The granite boulder (21.5 feet wide and 21.5 feet high) is installed atop a 456-foot-long trench, which allows people to walk under it. The long channel, descending to a depth of 15 feet, is encircled by a lozenge-shaped line of weathering steel embedded in the earth and rusting to a velvety brown. The installation is situated in a field of polished concrete slices, set at a slight angle between the Resnick Pavilion and Sixth Street. Heizer opened the exhibit on June 24, 2012. A documentary about the installation process has been made by the filmmaker Doug Pray and premiered at the Landmark’s Nuart Theater in Los Angeles, CA on September 5, 2014. His most recent work is Tangential Circular Negative Line in Mauvoisin, Switzerland, commissioned by Fondation Air&Art directed by Jean Maurice Varone.

Heizer has also produced a number of abstract paintings, and his large-scale sculptures, often inspired by Native American forms, can be found in museums and public spaces worldwide.

Major permanent commissions

 

  • Tangential Circular Negative Line (2012), Mauvoisin, Switzerland, an Air&Art Foundation commission directed by Jean Maurice Varone
  • Levitated Mass (2012), Resnick Pavilion North Lawn at LACMA (Los Angeles, California)
  • 45 Degrees, 90 Degrees, 180 Degrees (1984), Rice University (Houston, Texas)
  • North, East, South, West (1982), 5th and Flower Streets, Los Angeles

 

Other works

 

  • Isolated Mass/Circumflex (#2) (1968–72), Nine Nevada Depressions, Menil Collection (Houston, Texas)
  • Rift # 1 (1968–72; deteriorated), Nine Nevada Depressions, Massacre Dry Lake, Nevada
  • Windows and Matchdrops (1969), seven small rills in the floor in front of the Kunsthalle Dusseldorf entrance, Germany
  • Double Negative (1969–70), located near Overton, Nevada
  • City (1972, unfinished), Lincoln County, Nevada
  • Adjacent, Against, Upon (1976), Myrtle Edwards Park (Seattle, Washington)
  • This Equals That (1980), Michigan State Capitol Complex, Lansing, Michigan
  • North, East, South, West (1967/2002), Dia:Beacon, Beacon, New York

 

Exhibitions

In 1968, Heizer was included in Earth Works, the influential group show at Virginia Dwan’s gallery, and then in the Whitney Museum’s painting annual in 1969, where his contribution was a huge photograph of a dye painting in the desert. For his first one-person show, at the Galerie Heiner Friedrich, Munich, in 1969, he removed 1,000 tons of earth in a conical shape to create Munich Depression. In 1977, he was included in documenta 6, Kassel. Major exhibitions of his work have been staged at institutions such as the Museum Folkwang, Essen (1979), the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (1984), and Fondazione Prada, Milan (1996).

Homages

 

  • Mungo Thomson, Levitating Mass (2012), Aspen, Colorado.
  • Regis Perray, 340 grammes deplaces… during Levitated Mass by Michael Heizer (2012), Nantes, France.
  • Jack Daws, Life on the Farm (Heizer), 2010

 

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Image result for michael heizer art

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John Hospers pictured below:

Image result for john hospers

 

I sent a cassette tape of Adrian Rogers on Evolution to John Hospers in May of 1994 which was the 10th anniversary of Francis Schaeffer’s passing and I promptly received a typed two page response from Dr. John Hospers. Dr. Hospers had both read my letter and all the inserts plus listened to the whole sermon and had some very angry responses. If you would like to hear the sermon from Adrian Rogers and read the transcript then refer to my earlier post at this link.  Over the last few weeks I have posted  portions of Dr. Hospers’ letter and portions of the cassette tape that he listened to back in 1994, but today I want  to look at some other comments made on that cassette tape that John Hospers listened to and I will also post a few comments that Dr. Hospers made in that 2 page letter.

John Hospers Compares John Ross’s Unintended Consequences and Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged

Published on May 2, 2012

John Hospers was professor emeritus of philosophy at the University of Southern California. He was also the first Libertarian Party Presidential candidate in 1972.

In this lecture from an International Society of Individual Liberty conference in 1996, Hospers compares John Ross’s novel Unintended Consequences with Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged. Hospers was a personal friend of Rand during her lifetime. He passed away in 2011.

Download the .mp3 of this lecture here: http://bit.ly/KvAzAh

Image result for john hospers ayn rand

MemoirConversations
With Ayn Rand
Part 2
by John Hospers
(Originally published in Liberty magazine, 1987)

In our last issue, John Hospers related what it was like to talk philosophy with Ayn Rand. Now, in the conclusion to his memoir, he details some of their philosophical differences and relates the inevitable falling out between the philosopher and the visionary. . .
.
Ayn occasionally expressed some disquiet (perhaps resentment) that she
was not recognized as a philosopher by the contemporary philosophical
community. In spite of long philosophical passages in Atlas Shrugged,
philosophers had never taken note of her views, and her philosophizing
in Atlas had largely fallen on deaf ears in the academic community.
I told her that philosophical discussion goes on almost entirely in
philosophical journals. What about philosophical books? she asked.
“Yours is a philosophical book,” I said, “but it is a novel. It’s not
that philosophers don’t read novels—though a lot of them don’t—but
they don’t consider it their professional duty to do so.” Besides, I
added, she had acquired a right-wing image in the popular press, and
that is a position that most academicians are strongly opposed to.
There were a few well-placed curses from Ayn about the prejudices of
the “liberal establishment.”

I told her that if she wanted to become known in philosophical
circles, she should write a piece or two and submit it to the Journal
of Philosophy or the Philosophical Review or the Review of
Metaphysics. After its publication, I said, it would be studied,
commented on, and probably criticized. She would then respond to these
criticisms, which again would evoke more from others, and at that
point, I said, “I guarantee that you will be known as a philosopher.”
But she never did this. She did not want to enter the arena of public
give-and-take with them. She wanted them to come to her. What she
wanted of philosophers, other than recognition, is not easy to say. I
am sure she would have cursed them soundly if they offered criticisms.
Even a mild criticism would often send her to the stratosphere in
anger.

At the same time, I must add, she would often tolerate criticism, even
revel in responding to it, if (1) it was given “in the right spirit”
(the vibes had to be non-hostile) and (2) it was sort of “on the right
track”—the sort of thing that could be said by someone who was “on his
way to the truth” but hadn’t yet arrived there; then she would
“correct him” painstakingly and in detail.

I sometimes pondered how people could approach so differently the
enterprise of philosophy. I thought of the composers Igor Stravinsky
and Richard Strauss; each occupies a high place in contemporary music,
but neither could tolerate the other’s musical idiom. Similarly, was
it just a difference of style among philosophers? Surely not. Each
comes to philosophy as a satisfaction for a felt need. I had been
“burned” early on by over-eager philosophic generalizations, and I was
weary of systems in which different philosophers said opposed things,
with no apparent way of resolving the issues in favor of the one or
the other. I had come to the conceptual-analysis route as a way of
resolving (or sometimes dissolving) problems that had long haunted me.
Ayn had aimed instead at a “final philosophical synthesis,” and
regardless of its strengths or weaknesses, that is what she had to
present to the world.
 
Human beings are distinguished from all other creatures by the power
of choice. I agreed with Ayn about this—we know that the dog scratches
at the door but we don’t know that he chose to do it (nor do we know
that he didn’t). But I tended to disagree with Ayn about some of the
things that (according to her) we choose. Do we really choose “to
think, or not to think”? I for one (I said) don’t remember making such
a choice. I would often think about things, perhaps because I am a
questioning sort of person and don’t usually take things on faith.
Yes, often when confronted by a specific problem, I have said “I’ll
think about it.” But when my first acts of thinking occurred I no more
chose “to think or not to think” than I chose “to be or not to be.”
But more than that I considered the scope of human choice to be much
more limited than she did. Some limitations we would both agree on: a
dunce can’t choose to be a genius, and a crippled person can’t choose
to walk (he can only choose to try, unsuccessfully). Without practice
a person can’t choose to do shorthand or typing at 60 words a minute.
Neither can a person, just by choosing (or even by choosing and
trying), extricate himself from situations that have been years
abuilding. An obsessive-compulsive cannot just stop doing whatever he
obsessively has been doing for years, such as putting the key in the
lock three times and then tapping the floor three times (or whatever
his ritual is). And if a teenager ran away from home to escape
alcoholic parents and now has lived on the city streets for two years,
she can’t just suddenly “straighten out” and become a normal
citizen—the gutter-instincts (survival by any means) are just too
strong by now. And so on for thousands of cases in which we may
unthinkingly believe people could have chosen to do what we want them
to do.

At this point in my diatribe Ayn reminded me that people do escape
from the slums, that with determination they overcome seemingly
impossible odds and sometimes become leaders in society. Prepared for
this observation, I granted that it was true; but the fact that one
person, A, can do this, doesn’t show that other persons, B, C, and D,
can also do it. Each of them acts under somewhat different conditions
from A. They have one common denominator, slum upbringing; but some
had the love and trust of their parents, and the wherewithal to
prepare them to surmount adversities, and others did not; some had
father-figures with whom they could identify; and so on. (If a person
tries hard enough, he will succeed; but what is meant by “hard
enough”? Would you call it “hard enough” if he did not succeed?
Doesn’t the statement come to the tautology “If you try till you
succeed, you’ll succeed”?)

Anyway, all this preparatory conversation was so much chaff in the
wind, for Ayn hit me with the charge that I was sure she would come up
with sooner or later. “You don’t believe in freedom at all, you are a
determinist.”

I knew what dense philosophical thicket lay in waiting here, with
vague and overlapping meanings of crucial terms like “free,”
“determined,” and “caused.” I hesitated even to embark on it. One must
come at the issue from so many different aspects, breaking one stone
and then another along the way—and most people lack the tenacity to go
through it all, they want quick and easy solutions, so that they can
repeat certain verbal formulas and convince themselves that they have
the problem mastered. So I began simply: “Determinism is just
universal causation. Everything that happens has some cause or other,
that’s the core meaning of ‘determinism’ (to which other meanings have
sometimes become attached). The causes may be matter or mind, spirits
or God—all that determinism says is that everything has a cause, even
if we never find out what all the causes are.” This was determinism in
its most neutral, vanilla-flavored sense, without the punch it was
supposed to pack, for there was nothing in my formulation that made it
incompatible with freedom, yet that was the main feature which led
many people to oppose it.

Of course, I continued, if everything is caused, events in human life
are caused too. Every decision you or I make is caused. But so what? I
decide to rake the leaves because I think the lawn looks unsightly. So
what’s so hostile to freedom in that? Would it be better if I
causelessly raked the lawn?

But of course, no matter how many actions are caused by decisions (or
other things going on in the mind), ultimately these events in the
mind are caused by things that take place in the world outside the
mind. They may be hereditary factors or factors in the environment,
all very complex indeed, but if my decisions are caused, so are the
factors that caused them, and so on back. And over the hereditary and
early environmental factors I had no control at all. So am I really
free?

Once the term “free” is raised, more clarification is called for. (I
discussed this with Ayn at much greater length than I have indicated
here.) The word “free,” I began, does have a use; it does describe
something. Ordinarily we say that I am free when I am not coerced,
when no one has forced me to act as I do; I act as a result of my own
choice, unforced and unconstrained by others. If she marries him
because she wants to, she does so freely, but if she is dragged to the
altar she is forced. This is a rough-and-ready distinction that
everyone understands and uses. Does determinism (I said) really deny
this? Determinism says “My act is caused”; freedom says “I caused my
act.” The difference is between the active and the passive voice.
Ayn started to object, but I went on. Sure, you can find causal
antecedents of human actions in the brain, in the environment, in
parental influences—in such complex causation as this there are
antecedents to be found all over the place. Most of the factors,
however, we don’t know at all, such as what makes one person make this
decision and another person in the same circumstances make a different
decision. In the human realm we are very far from having established
determinism as we have done in physics and astronomy, where we can
predict an eclipse to the split-second a hundred years ahead.
Determinism asserts the universality of causes in the human realm,
without having gone much of the distance toward proving it that has
been accomplished in the natural sciences.

Ayn expressed the belief that in the area of human choices, there are
indeed causes, but that a person in so acting is self-caused (causa
sui). I expressed doubt as to what this could mean. If something is
caused, isn’t it caused by something else, something other than
itself? How could my decision cause itself? Cause has to do with
origination, and how could the origin of choice X be choice X itself?
We can say, truly, that I caused my choices—that I, a complex set of
actual and dispositional characteristics, caused this act of choosing
to occur—but that is not the same as saying that X caused X. I was not
able to see causa sui as anything but a desperate attempt to escape
“the dilemma of determinism.”

At any rate, what I wanted to make crystal clear to Ayn was that the
“principle of determinism” (or Causal Principle), that everything that
occurs has a cause, is not merely a statement (true or false) about
nature’s workings; I tried to give her a sense that it had a much more
complex and ambivalent epistemological status than that, which
rendered labels like “true” and “false” extremely dubious.
I tried to make the epistemological point very simply. Suppose a
chemistry student gets some quite unexpected results when he repeats a
laboratory experiment. He then reports to his teacher that the same
effects don’t always arise from the same cause: he set up the
experiment exactly the same both times, yet got different results (an
orange precipitate in the first case, none in the second). Conditions
C produced result E-l the first time and E-2 the second time—different
effects from the same cause! Yet his teacher wouldn’t tolerate this
for a moment. Maybe he had some evidence that the C’s weren’t the
same—he might find an impurity in the liquid the second time that
wasn’t there the first. But more usually he had no evidence at
all—there was a difference in the E’s, he reasoned, so there had to be
a difference in the C’s. And we would say this whether we know it or
not, whether we ever discover it or not.

And so on in general, I said. If after repeated trials we discover the
cause of something, we say that confirms the Causal Principle even
more; but if after repeated trials we fail to discover the cause, we
don’t say it had no cause, but only (and always) that it’s there but
we haven’t discovered it yet. Isn’t this a remarkable asymmetry? Isn’t
this very peculiar—a principle that discoveries confirm but no
discoveries can disconfirm? A principle that parades as a truth about
the world, yet is apparently immune to refutation by discoveries about
the world? What does this show? Isn’t there “something funny going on”
here? Aren’t we trying to run with the hare and hunt with the hounds?
Isn’t this asymmetry a ground for suspicion?

I was not sure whether Ayn followed the direction in which I was
pointing, but I went on. I suggested that the much-vaunted Causal
Principle was not a statement about the world at all—not like “All
birds fly,” which can be disconfirmed by finding a few ostriches. That
which can be confirmed by experience but not disconfirmed by
experience is not a statement about the world. It might be an a priori
truth, like the Law of Identity, not subject to, and not requiring,
confirmation by experience. But I could not think it a priori because
it made claims about nature which, I suggested, could only be
confirmed by observing nature—which can’t be done from one’s armchair.
Instead, I suggested that it was a kind of scientific rule-of-the-game
(“heuristic maxim”) that has stood us in good stead because when we
used it in the past we have found lots of causes, but one which we
don’t permit to be disconfirmed, for there’s nothing that we could do
that we need to count as disconfirming it. It’s a rule, the following
of which has pragmatic value—it helps us to find more causes; but
since it isn’t falsifiable it doesn’t count as an empirical rule,
which is what it would be if it were like “All birds fly” or “All
bodies gravitate.”

Something may look like a plain and simple statement about the world,
the only question about it being “Is it true or false?” But what looks
like a statement needn’t be a statement, and perhaps this one
isn’t—instead maybe it’s a rule that we use to guide our future
scientific activities, or express a faith in some ultimate uniformity
of nature. And if it has that status, then our talk about the
Principle of Determinism being true or false is mistaken from the
outset. We have been misled into thinking it has this simple
true-false status at all.

I could not expect Ayn or anyone else to grasp the import of this at
once: to someone who has spent most of a lifetime asking “Is it true
or is it false?” it is disorienting and mind-blowing to be told that
this distinction may not be applicable to the question at hand. One
has to see how this approach can be applied to other philosophical
problems (not just determinism), and how it clarifies or dissolves
those problems rather than leaving them forever intractable. But to
appreciate all this requires much more one-on-one philosophizing than
I had done with Ayn. I had high hopes that we might yet do it. But
whether it was the defects of my presentation or her disinclination to
think outside the traditional categories with which she had operated
for many years, I was never able to get far with her on this—it
remained terra incognita to her, and her responses seldom indicated
that she had grasped the true import of what I had said.
 
It seemed to me that she failed to appreciate the subtle shifts of
meaning of crucial terms that often occur midway in a discussion, and
result in total confusion unless the shifts are pointed out when they
arise. She seemed to have a number of ideas packaged together under
the heading she called “determinism” and assumed that the term
retained the same meaning in its various contexts of use (a common
enough error). One example that I particularly remember is that she
would say that according to determinism a person never could  do other
than he did; and that if exactly the same circumstances were to arise
again (according to determinism), the same result would occur.
“And if the same thing didn’t recur,” I said, “then you’d conclude,
without further evidence, that some factor in the circumstances
leading up to it were different this time. And you would say it,” I
insisted, “as an a priori assumption, without any independent evidence
that any of the conditions were different.” I remember using this
analogy: A says “All swans are white,” and B replies that there are
black swans in Australia; to which A replies, “If they’re not white,
they’re not swans.”

I tried to open up to her the logic of the word “could.” I said that
“could” is an ability word: when someone says “You couldn’t have done
otherwise,” this charge invites the retort, “Not even if I wanted to?”
And of course if I had wanted to I would have done something
different—I would have continued reading the paper instead of going to
the kitchen. My wanting to do X instead of Y could well be the
deciding factor that caused me to do X instead of Y. So, I said, it
isn’t true that I couldn’t have done Y; I would have done Y if I had
wanted to.

But the next step, of course, was “According to determinism, you
couldn’t have wanted anything other than you did.” But what, I said,
does “couldn’t” mean in this sentence? That I wouldn’t have wanted
anything else even if I had wanted to? No? If not, then what does
“could” mean in this sentence? I suggested that it would be preferable
to say that if exactly the same conditions were repeated the same
event would have happened—and then show the unprovability of that
statement because of the impossibility of tracking down all the
conditions.

Ayn was impatient with such subtleties. When we recapitulated, she
would always return to the position that if you are a determinist you
believe that nothing could have happened except what did happen. And
once again I would inquire what “could” might mean in that
sentence—and we would start on the merry-go-round once again.
Of course, I went on, there are (as usual) other senses of “could” as
well, not specifically applying to human action. We may say that when
you let go this pencil from your hand it could not fly upwards, that
it could not do anything but go downwards in accordance with the law
of gravity. But that is only to say that the downward motion of the
pencil is the one that accords with laws of nature. That is, if you
assume certain laws of physics, then the pencil could not (logically
could not) have moved in any other way. The “could” here is a logical
“could” (not an empirical one) expressing the logical connection
between statements—statements of the laws of nature, statements about
the mass and volume of the pencil, and the third statements (the
conclusion) about the behavior of the pencil. We can say that granted
certain premises, this behavior could not have been other than it was.
(But, I added, saying that the pencil could not have behaved otherwise
is already a departure from the central meaning of “could,” which has
to do with ability.)
 
I never made much progress with her on determinism, but when we talked
one evening about a specific kind of causation—extra-sensory
perception—I evoked in her an unexpectedly vigorous response.
I do not remember how the subject arose, and I didn’t even consider it
a philosophical area of discussion, but I was describing to her Soal
and Bateman’s book Experiments in Parapsychology. I explained that out
of thousands of tries, a few people made very good subjects; they were
able to state with considerable accuracy truths that (as far as we
knew) were discoverable only by sense-perception, but which they could
not have known through sense-perception.

A man was sealed into a room evening after evening, and there was no
possible communication between this room and another room three doors
away—there were scientists who averred that there was no way a person
in Room 1 could convey information to someone in Room 4. In each of
these two sealed-off rooms, cards were being pulled from a deck one
per minute. Every minute a bell would ring, at which moment a card
would be pulled from a deck in one room and the subject in the other
room would write on a piece of paper which card he thought it was.
There were five different kinds of cards (apple, elephant etc.) and
thus one chance out of five of guessing correctly. Getting the correct
result slightly above chance (20 percent) for a time wasn’t
particularly noteworthy, but getting results like 40 percent correct
over 100,000 attempts was quite remarkable, the chances against this
being some trillions to one. Yet several subjects were reported to
have done just that, and no one knew how. Ayn looked skeptical but
allowed me to proceed.

Moreover, I went on, the subjects had improved with practice. From a
fifth they had gone gradually to a quarter and even to a third. No one
could figure out how they got the ability to do this. They themselves
didn’t know: they weren’t aware at the time that they were guessing
correctly, they just “put down the first thing that popped into their
heads.” And then the rules of the game were changed—”You will now
write down the card that was being pulled last night at this point in
the sequence”—and their achievements vanished (went down to chance),
but came up again with practice to the previous fraction.

And then, most curious of all, the rules were changed once more: “You
will write down the card that is going to be pulled at this point in
the sequence tomorrow evening.” Again the results went down to chance,
but again with practice the record gradually improved. But the
implications of it shocked me: How could they possibly know the
future? What if between tonight and tomorrow night the entire building
burned down? And so on.

Ayn was now taken quite aback, and thought I should give no credence
to any of this. It implied reverse causality, she said, and that was
impossible—something at a later time causing something at an earlier
time. I agreed that reverse causality was impossible—such as the rain
tomorrow helping the crops grow today. But I didn’t think the example
involved reverse causality but only precognition. We all predict the
future, I said, usually with some evidence; what made this case
peculiar was the ability of the person to make a correct prediction
again and again without apparently having any evidence whatever. (At
least there was nothing known to science that we would call evidence.)
That was what I found different about this kind of case, and I
couldn’t think of any explanation.

Ayn was quite shocked that I would take any of this “mystery-
mongering” seriously. (It was hard to convey briefly the
import of entire books on the subject, and the extraordinary lengths
to which people had gone to make sure there was no sensory route by
which A could have known B.) Didn’t I know that reality does not work
in that way? Perhaps so, I said—and I added I didn’t much care whether
reality does work in that way or not—but whether it does or doesn’t is
not something we can know by just pontificating about it from our
armchairs: we have to go the difficult route of empirical
investigation to find out whether people can know truths about the
universe that are not mediated through sense-organs. One cannot know
this a priori, I claimed; one has to go the more difficult route of
checking it all out in detail. But I gathered that she considered this
all a matter of necessity—that it was necessarily the case that nature
doesn’t work in this way. She was more disturbed about my
permissiveness on this subject than I had thought she would be.
Instead of saying that nature can’t work in this way, the question for
me was whether in fact it does; if it does, then it won’t do to say
that it can’t.

For me, the question of what caused what is entirely a contingent
matter, on which we can make judgments only in the light of
observation of the world. But it dawned on me that Ayn didn’t accept
the distinction between necessary and contingent at all. For her, it
seemed (though I never got it in just these words) every statement
that is true is necessarily true. “Doesn’t everything that happens
have to happen?” she once asked me.

I replied that one would first have to inquire about the meaning of
the phrase “have to.” In most locutions, “have to” involves a command
or order—”I have to be in by midnight.” When one says that events in
nature, such as a comet entering the earth’s atmosphere, have to
happen, it sounds first off as if this event is being commanded,
perhaps by God. But this is surely not what most people mean when they
say it. Perhaps we mean that if one accepts certain laws of nature
(concerning gravitation, mass, velocity), and if one grants certain
initial conditions (Comet X is in such-and-such a position at
such-and-such a time), then Comet X must be another place at a
specific other time. (Not that the comet must—but that the
statement—the conclusion—logically must be true if the premises are
true. The “must” is about the relation between statements, not about
phenomena in nature.) When I say that if I let go of this pencil it
must fall, doubtless I am saying that the statement that it does (or
will) follows from certain laws of nature plus initial conditions. But
it would be clearer if I just said that the pencil will fall.

There are many uses of “must” and “have to” (I took her through
several more) and I told Ayn that I thought she was telescoping
several disparate uses of the term “must” into one, without
distinguishing among them, and that this might be why she was led to
make such a statement as “whatever happens must (has to) happen.” (If
you take it quite literally, I said, it seems like a more extreme
fatalism than any view I have ever countenanced.)
 
Ayn usually let me take the initiative in deciding what subjects we
should discuss. The conversations described in this paper reflect
largely my choice of topics—these were the things about which I was
interested in sounding her out. I reflected later that in this respect
I had probably made a mistake. Only occasionally did we get around to
discussing topics that were central to her philosophy. That is why
some topics central to her are largely absent from these pages. Her
papers on these subjects had yet to be written.
 
“A is A” is, I insisted, a tautology, but an important one: every time
a person is guilty of a logical inconsistency he is saying A and then
in the next breath not-A. Thus “A is A” is something of which we need
to remind ourselves constantly. But it is not, I said, an empirical
statement: we don’t have to go around examining cats to discover
whether they are cats. (We might have to examine this creature to
discover whether it is a cat.)

But, I said, statements of what causes what, such as “Friction causes
heat,” are empirical statements; we can only know by perceiving the
world whether they are true. How, I wondered, can the Law of Causality
be merely an application of the Law of Identity? You could manipulate
the Law of Identity forever and never squeeze out anything as specific
as a single causal statement.

But (I went on) I could see how such a confusion might be generated. A
tautology can easily look like something else. “A thing acts in
accordance with its nature” might be one example. This might be taken
as an instance of the Law of Identity: if a creature of type X acts in
accordance with laws A, B, C, and this creature doesn’t do that, then
it isn’t an X. If dogs bark and growl and this creature hisses and
meows, it isn’t a dog; that is, we wouldn’t call anything a dog that
did this. So we can plausibly classify the statement about what we
call “a thing’s nature” as special cases of the Law of Identity. But
this, I insisted, tells us nothing about the world, but only about how
we are using words like “dog” and “cat.”

What is a thing’s “nature” supposed to be anyway? I went on. Is a
thing’s nature its definition? Some might say yes: it’s the nature of
water to be two parts hydrogen and one part oxygen. But one might also
answer no: it’s the nature of water, one might say, to flow downwards,
and this is no part of any (usual) definition of “water.” It wouldn’t
even be true if atmospheric pressure were ever so much less than on
earth (it might evaporate and not flow). So to answer the question, we
have to know what the person means by talking about a thing’s nature.
Often, I suggested, when we talk about a thing’s nature we are talking
about a set of dispositional traits: thus, “It is the nature of cats
to prowl”—yet so far as I know the tendency to prowl is not listed in
the definition of “cat.” Or, when we say “I used to think his lying
was just a quirk, but now I think it’s his nature,” we are saying that
his tendency to lie is a more fundamental trait than we had previously
thought.

I could see that Ayn was getting bored, so I summarized the moral of
the tale: that statements about “X’s nature” sound simple and easy,
but that under this linguistic simplicity lies a morass of vagueness,
which comes out only gradually as we explicate one case after another
in which we actually use the expression. I seemed unable to convey to
Ayn any sense of this; and yet, it seemed to me, what was wrong with
the usual philosophic formulations, including hers, couldn’t be
appreciated without going through the detailed “digging” required to
turn up these disparate meanings, and their confusion with one another
from which the errors flow. Philosophic formulas, I said, merely give
us “philosophy on the cheap.”
 
It was inevitable that sooner or later we would get to the subject of
definition. I never had an opportunity to present my views on this
systematically, from the ground up. I had done this in some detail in
my book Introduction to Philosophical Analysis, in the long 100-page
introductory chapter entitled “Words and the World.” I gave her a copy
of the book and encouraged her to read the relevant chapter. But she
never did; I was disappointed by this, for I had thought we could use
this material at least as a starting place for discussion, but in time
I realized that she read almost no philosophy at all. And I was amazed
how much philosophy she could generate “on her own steam,” without
consulting any sources.

She began by insisting that one should search for true definitions,
and I responded that definitions were neither true nor false. But it
shortly turned out that I was talking about definitions of words and
phrases, and she was talking about definitions of things (entities in
the world) or, sometimes, concepts of those things. But I expressed
ignorance as to what the phrase “the definition of a thing” meant. (We
also discussed “definition of concepts,” examining the differences
between words and concepts.)

I suggested that there were no true or false definitions. “The word
‘symphony’ once referred to any orchestral composition, without voice,
in four movements,” I said. “Then, as in Beethoven’s 9th, voices would
sometimes be introduced and the work would still be called a symphony,
so that was no longer a defining feature. Then in the 20th century
came one-movement symphonies, such as Sibelius’ 7th, so the
four-movement requirement fell out. What happened was that the word
‘symphony’ was no longer used to describe what it had described
before. But there is no true or false definition of ‘symphony.'”

A simple case to the contrary, Ayn said, was that H2O is a true
definition of water; if someone said water was HO or H2SO4, he would
be mistaken.

I responded that I saw nothing but confusion in this. “It depends on
what you mean in the first place by the word ‘water.’ If by ‘water’
you mean H2O, then course ‘Water is H2O’ is true because you’ve
already defined water to mean that. All you get that way is ‘H2O is
H2O,’ a simple tautology. But of course you might not already mean
that by the word ‘water’—early man surely did not. He meant the liquid
that flows in streams and rivers. In that meaning, it is true that
water is H2O—that is, the liquid in streams and rivers has the
chemical formula H2O. That is a true statement about water—an
empirically true statement, not a definition. Once you are clear what
you mean by the word, the issue is resolved.”

Ayn alleged that man is a rational animal, and that this is a true
definition. It is true, in other words, that that’s what man is. I
replied that it all depends what you mean by “man” in that sentence.
As a rule we employ a biological definition of man—man is a creature
with two legs, two arms, walks upright, etc.; that’s how we identify
creatures as human without knowing anything more about them than our
senses present to us. Now, the creature that fulfills that biological
requirement is also a rational animal (that is, has rational
potentialities, even if unfulfilled)—that is a true statement: not a
definition, but a statement about the creatures identified by the
first (biological) definition. (Of course, again, if by “man” you
already mean “rational animal,” then it’s a sheer tautology.)
We could say, I suggested, that man is a laughing animal, or an
aesthetic animal (the only creature that enjoys works of art), a
volitional animal (the only creature capable of choice), and perhaps
several others. But, as Ayn aptly pointed out, these features are less
fundamental. If we were not rational animals we would not be able to
comprehend works of art or see the point of jokes; the rationality
explains the other characteristics, not vice versa. I assented to
this; but I insisted that my point still held, that if “man” is
already defined as a rational animal, the statement that man is a
rational animal is a tautology (merely an example of A is A); whereas
if “man” is defined biologically, as we ordinarily do, then the
statement that man is a rational animal is true, but not a definition.
A stipulative definition, I said, merely tells others how we’re going
to use a word (“I’ll use this noise to mean so-and-so”), and a
stipulation isn’t a true statement, just a proposal to use a noise in
a certain way. A reportive definition is a report of what a word is
used to mean in a language-group. Thus, “A father is a male parent” is
a report (in this case a true one) of what the word “father” is used
to mean in the English language. And finally, if you already mean by
“father” a male parent, the definition of “father” as male parent is
presupposed, and the statement “A father is a male parent” comes to “A
male parent is a male parent,” another instance of “A is A.” Confusion
comes only if we get these scrambled together.

Is “Steel is an alloy of iron” a true definition of steel? No, I said,
it is a definition of “steel” if that is what you choose to mean by
the word “steel.” It is also a true report about how users of the
English language use the word “steel,” and as such it is a true
reportive definition. And if you already mean “alloy of iron” by the
word “steel,” then again you have a tautology, Steel is steel, A is A.
It seemed to me that these distinctions clear up the question. In
every case we define words and phrases, and we describe things (using
the words or phrases).

Whales were once thought to be fish. When it was discovered that they
were mammals, wasn’t this a discovery of the true definition of
whales? The discovery (an empirical one), I said, was that those
creatures which we called “whales” (on the basis of their shape, size,
and general appearance) also had the feature of being mammalian. We
then changed (or biologists did) the definition of the word so as to
include being mammalian as a defining feature; biological
classification on the basis of mammal, reptile, etc., had already long
been in place; so after the discovery nothing that looked like a whale
but was a fish would have been called a whale. The re-definition of
the term was simply an adaptation to existing methods of biological
classification. But the discovery, that these creatures were mammals,
was an empirical one, like the discovery that some nebulae are
actually galaxies.

This is one of the issues that seemed so obvious to me that I did not
see how anyone could think otherwise. That is why I tended not even to
remember opposing remarks as long as they were not clear to me. Rather
than misreport what Ayn said, I have chosen not to say anything about
her remarks: what I said is very clear to me, what she said is not.
At the time being described, Rand’s non-fiction works, including
Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology, had not yet been written. I
would like to think that our discussions helped motivate her to write
some of these non-fiction works. At the time of our discussions she
was writing very little. Time was on her hands, and perhaps that was
one reason for inviting me back.
 
She vehemently denied the validity of certain distinctions, like
analytic vs. synthetic and a priori vs. a posteriori. Both were
Kantian distinctions, and her hatred of Kant may have played a part in
the rejection; but more likely her rejection of the distinctions
played a part in her hatred of Kant.

Already at the time of our discussions there was critical talk in
philosophic circles about the analytic-synthetic distinction. Is it
analytic to say that all green things are extended? Quine had asked,
and concluded that the failure to provide a satisfactory answer was
due to the unclarity of the term “analytic,” not to any defects in
“green” or “extended.” But the examples I used were of the very
simplest sort: “All A is A” is analytic, I said (it’s another
formulation of the Law of Identity), and “All A is B” is not. “Lions
are lions” is analytic and “Lions are fierce” is not—to determine that
you have to observe lions. And the same for a priori: you don’t have
to go to the next room to discover whether the cat is a cat, but you
do have to in order to find out whether the cat is lying on the bed
there.

Why did Ayn deny a distinction that seemed to me so obvious—perhaps
not for far-out cases like colors being extended, but for ordinary “A
is A” type cases? She seemed to think, as Leibniz had done for
different reasons, that the distinctions do not apply because all the
statements are really in the same bag. All the features of lions,
whether now known or not, are really a part of their definition. All
statements about X follow from X’s definition—that seemed to be the
view.

But I did not see how this could be so. That this table is a solid
object does follow from (or is contained in) the definition of a
table. But that we are now sitting at this table does not. Nothing in
any definition of a table known to me could possibly tell us whether
it is true that we are now sitting at the table.

Perhaps the issue has a different focus: This would not be the egg
that it is if it had not been laid by this hen, and I would not be the
person I am if I had not been born to the specific parents I had.
True—but would I also have to have the characteristic of having been
born at the moment that I was? If I had been born a day earlier (to
the same parents etc.), wouldn’t it still have been me? True, it
wouldn’t have been me if the birth had taken place in ancient
Greece—the parents wouldn’t have been the same, etc. But would one
really be prepared to say that all features of me are defining,
including the mole on my cheek and the fact that a bee had just stung
me? I saw nothing but endless confusion in that way of trying to deny
the difference between necessary and contingent statements.
I tried using some examples, of the kind that made my students catch
on to the distinction most quickly. That this flower is red, that
there are six of them on this plant, that such plants exist at
all—these are contingent statements, they depend on the way the world
is, which can’t be known a priori; that 2 + 2 = 4, that the angles of
a triangle equal 180 degrees, that if A is larger than B then B is
smaller than A—these are necessary truths, I tried to explain, even if
one doesn’t accept the analytic-synthetic distinction.

Or again, with regard to possibility and impossibility: I can’t jump
20 feet high, but I (logically) might, and if I claimed to do so my
statement would be false, but there would be no contradiction in it.
But if I claimed to have gone backward in time, and disappeared from
1961 to 2500 B.C. (and what could that mean?), and actually helped the
Egyptians build the pyramids—this, I said, was a logical
impossibility, because contradictions would be involved in asserting
it: I would be saying that (for example) the pyramid-building occurred
without me (I wasn’t born yet) and also that I participated in it (by
“going back” in 1961 to 2500 B. C.); and that there were, let’s say,
5,368 persons building the pyramids and (with the new addition of
myself) there were 5,369—but there (logically) couldn’t have been both
5,368 and other than 5,368. And so on. She granted the impossibility
in the second case, but perhaps not for the reason I mentioned. To her
all impossibility was of one stripe, and she did not admit the
distinction between logical and empirical possibility.
 
I stated a problem (or pseudo-problem) which seemed to fascinate my
students: “How do you know that you and I are seeing the same color?
True, we both pass the color-blindness tests, and you say you see
green when you look at the tree, just as I do, but how do I know you
aren’t the victim of a “reversed spectrum,” for example that you
regularly see red where I see green and vice versa, but of course you
call it green like everyone else, since that’s the word you’ve been
taught to use in describing the color of trees? But perhaps if I could
see what you’re seeing, I’d call it red, or something else. After all,
how do I know?” Maybe the outcome has no practical import, but it’s a
nice theoretical question anyway—the sort of thing that science seems
unable to answer.

I cannot say that Ayn was fascinated by this question. She regarded it
as rather trivial. But she heard me out. I suggested that you can
(usually, perhaps always) get to what a questioner means by his
question, if he can tell you what sort of thing would satisfy him as
an answer—what precisely does he want to know? Now consider these
possibilities (I said): (1) Suppose it were technically possible, as
one day it may be, to connect one person’s eyes and optic nerve with
another person’s brain. You could, then, quite literally see through
the other person’s eyes; and then you would know whether the leaves
looked the same color to you as they did when you looked through your
own eyes. You’d be able to compare what you saw with your former eyes
with what you saw through your new eyes. Perhaps when you did this you
would say, “They still look the same to me,” and that would settle the
question; or you might say “They don’t look as they used to at all,”
and that too would settle the question.

But of course (I pursued) one may object that this won’t do. (2)
Exchanging eyes isn’t enough, runs the objection. The interpretation
of these visual data takes place in the brain. To settle the issue, I
would not only have to have your eyes, I’d have to have your brain (or
at least a part of it). But now we run into what’s called the problem
of personal identity. If my brain were put into your body and vice
versa (assuming this to be as technically possible as exchanging eyes)
would it still be me? Would it still be me, with all my brain’s
memory-traces now inside your head? Here we run into a problem that’s
more than a technical problem; what is it that constitutes one’s self,
if not one’s perceptions, dispositions, and memories? How can I
exchange brains with you and still be me? Thus, if this second
alternative is the one demanded to resolve the problem, then unlike
the first alternative, it can’t be solved: the conditions demanded for
the solution are self-contradictory.

Ayn wasn’t very impressed with all this. She didn’t consider the
issue to be of any importance in the first place. She was
temperamentally unsympathetic to this way of doing philosophy. And she
had no patience with the distinctions I used in order to arrive at a
solution. For her it was a non-solution to a non-problem.
 
In spite of her lack of concern for shifts of meaning in a word or
phrase, I had to be very careful what terms I used in her presence;
for some terms, if I used them, would trigger in her an instant
conclusion that was quite foreign to anything I meant. When I
mentioned that a theory in science can be accepted or rejected on
pragmatic grounds—as a device for explaining the most by means of the
least—she would hear the term “pragmatic” and accuse me of being a
pragmatist. And then I would explain at some length that I was not a
pragmatist in any sense that she probably had in mind—for example, I
did not hold that the truth of a statement had anything to do with its
utility. I only used the term within a definite context, with a
meaning defined within that context—and one should not jump to the
conclusion “You’re a pragmatist,” for I wouldn’t even know what she
meant by the term in that sentence.

For a person who was always insisting on “iron-clad definitions,” I
found her linguistic habits quite sloppy. I was aware that Rome wasn’t
built in a day and that she had not grown up in a tradition in which
sensitivity to these matters was considered important—one just strode
over the issues in seven-league boots (my characterization, not hers).
Still, philosophic outcomes depend so much on just such subtleties
that I became discouraged when after many hours of discussion she
showed no more awareness of where I was really coming from than she
had when we started.

I had no problems with her ignorance of modern logic or physics (such
as Heisenberg’s principle), but when the very issues she raised
required a finely honed instrument to grapple with them insightfully,
and she seemed quite unaware of what that instrument could do, and
remained so after time, I gradually became as discouraged with her as
she was impatient with me.
 
Somewhere she had picked up the idea that philosophers in the
twentieth century were skeptical about the existence of an “external
world” (tables, trees, stars, etc.). I told her that skeptical
arguments in this area were still extensively examined, in the
tradition of Hume, but that no one so far as I knew had any actual
doubts about the existence of the chair they were sitting on, and so
on. But that, she said, was the mistake: they don’t doubt it in
practice but they do in theory—they don’t practice what they preach. I
explained that when skeptical arguments occur, as in Hume, they have
to be met, in an attempt to make theory accord with practice; one
can’t just assume that “common sense” is always right. I explained a
similar situation in Zeno’s paradoxes, and Parmenides’ attempt to deny
the reality of motion. I said there were lots of problems about the
relation of the world to the senses by means of which we perceive it.
I did mention, almost incidentally, an attempt to prove that we know
the existence of the external world for certain, namely by Prof.
Norman Malcolm in his essay “The Verification Argument” (in Max
Black’s anthology, Philosophical Analysis). Instantly she picked up on
this, inquiring about Malcolm as a possible ally. She wanted to know
more about him and even to invite him to New York for a personal
meeting. She did not read his article, or anything else by him, but I
outlined the rather complex argument of the article for her in two
typed pages, trying to state his premises accurately and show how they
yielded his conclusions. She expressed gratitude to me for doing this.
But, she wondered, why should a person go to such lengths to defend a
thesis that was so obvious? I realized that to Ayn the existence of
the physical world was axiomatic and didn’t require defense, and told
her that she would probably find no particular ally in Malcolm, who
was most interested (in the essay) in exploring the implications of
terms like “verification” and “certainty.” At any rate, there the
matter dropped. She took my word as to what his arguments were, and as
far as I know she  never read anything to enlighten her further on the
issue.
 
We discussed many other philosophical issues, often in a brief and
fragmentary way, before concentrating on something else. I omit here
those issues of which I could not now give an accurate account from
memory. In many cases I remember more clearly what I said than what
she said. Her non-fiction works had yet to be written, and what I
endeavor to record here is what she and I said then, not what we might
have said later. Moreover, most of my readers will probably be
acquainted with her position on various issues, but unacquainted with
mine; and I want to provide some conception, however brief and
unsystematic, of where I was coming from on the issues we discussed.
 
When we discussed metaphysical and epistemological issues, a certain
tension between us would very gradually and almost imperceptibly
arise. I could usually avoid an unpleasant scene by attributing
(correctly) the view being discussed to some actual philosopher,
living or dead, and then she could curse the philosopher in question
and take the heat off me. It’s not that I wanted to avoid
responsibility for the view, but I wanted to avoid unpleasant scenes,
which only impeded the progress of our discussions, and achieved no
worthwhile end that I could think of. But it was clear that I was not
“giving in” to her brand of metaphysics, and equally clear that my
methods of what I liked to call philosophical clarification were
falling on arid ground in the present case. I became somewhat
discouraged, especially since she seldom acknowledged an error and
seemed less interested in learning than in defending prepared
positions. Moreover, what seemed like a blinding philosophical light
to me would be a total dud to her, and her highly abstract
philosophical pronouncements often seemed to me confused, unclear, or
false, effective though they might be as banners for enlisting the
philosophically un-washed.
 
Meanwhile, several incidents occurred that distressed me. There was a
professor at a midwestern university who had been denied tenure some
months earlier, for saying that he wouldn’t mind too much if his
daughter slept around a bit before she decided on whom to mate with
for life. The faculty was up in arms against the university
administration for terminating him, and started a nation-wide petition
on his behalf. I had also signed a petition requesting that he not be
terminated.

When I showed Ayn the letter to which I had responded on his behalf,
Ayn saw my name on the letterhead and urged me strongly to dissociate
myself from any attempt to defend him. He should not have referred to
his daughter publicly in that way, she said. I asked her whether she
really thought he should be denied tenure just on account of having
said what he did. And Ayn’s reply stunned me: he should have been
terminated from his job, she said, even if he’d had tenure. Knowing
all that tenure means to someone who has worked for years to earn it,
I found her reply shocking and astonishing.
 
Newsweek wrote a terribly unfair piece about Ayn. I responded to it by
letter, trying to answer their charges point by point. I gave Ayn a
copy of my letter. Newsweek never published it, but that, said Ayn,
made no difference; what mattered was that I had come to her defense
by writing it and responding to the false charges.

Not long after, New York University’s philosopher Sidney Hook attacked
her in print, and she wanted me to take him on as well. Knowing
Sidney, I was disinclined to do this. He already knew about my
acquaintance with Ayn, but we had never discussed it further (I hardly
ever saw him). Should I now condemn him publicly and destroy a
long-standing friendship? I knew that this friendship would be at an
end if I condemned him.

Ayn was sure that nothing less than a public condemnation was required
to prove to him how much I was devoted to “intellectual objectivity.”
But she had very little conception of the manners and morals of
professional academicians—they can get along well and even be friends,
while disagreeing strongly with one another on rather fundamental
issues. The philosophic arena was one for the friendly exchange of
diverse ideas. But for her, it was a battlefield in which one must
endlessly put one’s life on the line. I was not willing to risk years
of occasional friendly communion with Sidney by condemning him
publicly, even if I thought he was mistaken in some of his
allegations.

But for Ayn this was a betrayal. It almost cost us our friendship. In
the end she attributed my attitude to the misfortune of having been
brainwashed by the academic establishment, at least with regard to
their code of etiquette.

I once mentioned to her my friendship with Isabel Hungerland, a
distinguished aesthetician from Berkeley with whom I would discuss
issues at philosophical conventions. Ayn inquired what her politics
were. “As far as I know, she’s a liberal,” I said. “What!” exclaimed
Ayn, “a friend of yours—a liberal?”

I realized then that I was expected, once I knew Ayn, to sacrifice
the friendship of all persons with political (and other) views opposed
to hers. Not that I would have to—I was supposed to want to. It was
immoral of me to continue to deal with such people. With many of them,
as with Isabel, I had a kind of relaxed, laid-back relationship, never
talking politics at all from one year to the next, and often not
knowing what their political views were. But now I was supposed to
excommunicate them all. “If thine hand offend thee, cut it off.” I was
not willing to plant a flag on a new terrain and thereby disavow my
allegiance to all other views, and I deeply resented Ayn’s attempt to
steer me in that direction—or should I say, her assumption that I
would “of course” do such a thing.

It wasn’t that I would have been unwilling to declare where I stood,
if I had been totally convinced and was prepared to defend it. I try
not to back off of commitments. But my whole way of coming at
philosophy was quite different from hers, and in spite of various
attempts I don’t think she ever understood mine. With her, it was as
if she were developing a Euclidean geometry from a set of axioms; I,
on the contrary, was the gadfly who kept puncturing the axioms or
finding their meaning (in some cases) to be vague or confused. As a
result of this I was convinced that “the high priori road” was not the
way to go in philosophy; I was sure that a careful, step-by-step,
case-by-case approach, frustrating though it might be in the work
required and the time needed to get anywhere with it, was the only
road to progress. This wearied her, bored her, and ultimately repelled
her.
 
The more time elapsed, the more the vise tightened. I could see it
happening; I hated and dreaded it; but knowing her personality, I saw
no way to stop it. I was sure that something unpleasant would happen
sooner or later. The more time she expended on you, the more
dedication and devotion she demanded. After she had (in her view)
dispelled objections to her views, she would tolerate no more of them.
Any hint of thinking as one formerly had, any suggestion that one had
backtracked or still believed some of the things one had assented to
previously, was greeted with indignation, impatience, and anger. She
did not espouse a religious faith, but it was surely the emotional
equivalent of one.

When I was authorized by the American Society for Aesthetics to ask
Ayn to give a twenty-minute talk at their annual meeting, which would
take place this time in Boston the last weekend of October 1962, I
passed on the offer to her at once. She accepted, with the provision
that I be her commentator (all papers were required to be followed by
a response from a commentator). She thought that I would understand
her views better than those who had no previous acquaintance with
them. I consented.

And so it was that on the last Friday night of October 1962, she gave
her newly-written paper “Art and Sense of Life” (now included in The
Romantic Manifesto). In general I agreed with it; but a commentator
cannot simply say “That was a fine paper” and then sit down. He must
say things, if not openly critical, at least challengingly exegetical.
I did this—I spoke from brief notes and have only a limited
recollection of the points I made. (Perhaps I repressed it because of
what happened shortly thereafter.) I was trying to bring out certain
implications of her talk. I did not intend to be nasty. My fellow
professors at the conference thought I had been very gentle with her.
But when Ayn responded in great anger, I could see that she thought I
had betrayed her. She lashed out savagely, something I had seen her do
before but never with me as the target. Her savagery sowed the seeds
of her own destruction with that audience.

When her colleague Nathaniel Branden and I had a walk in the hall
immediately following this exchange, there was no hint of the
excommunication to come. But after the evening’s events were
concluded, and by previous invitation I went to Ayn and her husband
Frank’s suite in the hotel, I saw that I was being snubbed by everyone
from Ayn on down. The word had gone out that I was to be (in Amish
terminology) “shunned.” Frank smiled at me, as if in pain, but he was
the only one. When I sensed this, I went back to my room. I was now
officially excommunicated. I had not so much as been informed in
advance. It was all over. In the wink of an eye.
So now a two-and-a-half-year friendship was at an end. It had come
with such suddenness, I couldn’t quite handle it at first. The long
evenings with Ayn were now a thing of the past. I was now the one to
feel a sense of betrayal.

But my pain was not entirely unmixed with relief. The pressure had
been mounting, and certain tensions between us had been increasing
steadily. Being forced to choose between friendship and truth as I saw
it (even if I saw it mistakenly), was not my way of conducting
intellectual life. I would sooner or later have had to escape from the
vise, I reflected. Perhaps it was better this way, with an outside
event precipitating the break. Sooner or later, probably sooner, I
would have been too explicitly frank or honest, and she would have had
an angry showdown with me, and that would have been that. Or so I told
myself. At any rate, along with the pain and the desolation, I felt a
sense of release from an increasing oppressiveness, which had been
inexorably tightening.

At dinner earlier that evening, when the radio announcer said that
Kennedy would not call off his blockade of Cuba even at the risk of
nuclear war, Ayn had said, “Good!” Privately I wondered whether she
had also said “Good” in connection with the break in our relations.
Perhaps she merely reflected with regret that the years of her efforts
on my behalf had been largely wasted.

At any rate, that night was the last time I ever saw her.
 
But I heard her once after that. In the late summer of 1968, not long
before the Big Break, Nathan phoned me in California and said “I want
to put you on the line to someone.” The conversation with Ayn was very
brief. “I understand that you are presenting my philosophy to your
classes,” she said. I replied that I was—I considered Ayn’s views in
several of my courses, without thereby implying that I did so with
total agreement. She seemed gratified, and wondered how I was, and
then turned the telephone back to Nathan.
 
I thought of her endlessly during the years. Her enthusiasm for ideas,
her intensity, her unfailing bluntness and those piercing eyes—the
image of these things was never far away from me, especially when I
assigned some of her essays in my classes and discussed them with
students point by point. But I never regretted that I had not been
enveloped further in the web of intellectually stifling allegiances
and entanglements, the route I had seen so many of her disciples go.
In the next few years, as her non-fiction essays appeared, I read them
avidly and made many notes and comments in the margins—points to raise
with her, questions to ask her. But of course I never got to ask them.
And then, almost fifteen years after my expulsion, I heard on the
radio that she had died. I felt, even after all these years, a
devastating sense of loss. It was hard to stay in control during my
talk at the memorial service for her in Barnsdall Park in Los Angeles.
How often, on visiting New York, I had almost stopped at her apartment
building. No, I thought, her friendships are broken but her enmities
last. It wouldn’t be any good. And surely she had treated me pretty
shabbily. But I thought of her, up there in that apartment, without
Frank now, and I wanted to be mesmerized by those piercing eyes once
again, and have another all-night discussion as in the old days.
I never got up the courage to take that step. It would probably have
been useless.  The occasion is past, and the past is gone forever.
That, I thought to myself with a certain grim irony, is at least one
necessary proposition to which she would have given her assent.

Here is a portion of Hospers’ June 2, 1994 letter to me: 

You don’t just throw these statements at an audience and then (without explaining the first ones) go on to throw others. It’s like hurling huge gobs of undigested food around. One would have to go thru each one separately, asking for its presuppositions and hidden assumptions, showing how the argument has shifted, and so on. Most preachers don’t go in for this even know this (never having taken a course in valid REASONING). So they just on pontificating. I feel sorry for the audience, their victims.

BELOW is from a sermon by Adrian Rogers that was included on the cassette tape I sent to DR. JOHN HOSPERS: 

There are not only the historical facts that indicate that the Bible is the Word of God but also there are the scientific facts of the Bible!!!!

There a medical book that has been discovered that goes all the way back at least to 1,552 B.C. It’s called the papyrus Ebers. And that is a compendium, a gathering together of the medical knowledge of ancient Egypt. Ancient Egypt had the dominant position of medicine in the ancient world. And what the ancient Egyptians were able to do is astounding and incredible. And people are still trying to figure out such things as how they embalmed the dead and did certain procedures and so forth. But, in this medical book, there are also some ludicrous things that you read. I’ll give you some of the prescriptions in the papyrus Ebers.

For example, to prevent your hair from turning gray, you anoint it with the blood of a black cat which has been boiled in oil, or with the fat of a rattlesnake. Now, here is a prescription if your hair’s falling out. One remedy is to apply a mixture of 6(?) fats, including those of the snake and the ibex (wild goat). I think I’ll try that! Here’s another prescription. If you have a splinter that’s embedded, you take worm’s blood and donkey’s dung and you put it on that splinter. Can you imagine the tetanus spores and bacteria that would be in donkey’s dung? Other drugs that they used were lizard’s blood, swine’s teeth, rotten meat, moisture from pig’s ears, donkey’s hooves, even excretion from animals.

Now listen. I want you to understand, dear friend. This was written by the sophisticated and learned ancient Egyptians. Now, put on top of that the fact that Moses studied in the University of Egypt. Did you know the Bible says that Moses was trained in all the knowledge of the Egyptians? (Acts 7:22). He had the best education that money could buy because his adopted granddaddy was the Pharaoh of Egypt!

Aren’t you glad that when you read the book of Genesis or Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, and so forth, you don’t read anything about lizard’s blood and donkey’s dung, and all of this kind of stuff as being these cures? Listen, when you read the books of Moses in the Bible, and you read the sanitary code and the dietary code, you’re going to find one of the highest levels of scientific knowledge that you’ll find even to this day. And you’ll not find one medical misconception in Moses’ writings. As a matter of fact, Moses says things that are incredible, like, “The life of the flesh is in the blood” (Lev. 17:11, 14). How did Moses know that this blood is a red river of life? Holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit. The dietary laws excluded such things as pig meat, catfish and shrimp. They taste great, but they raise your cholesterol and have other harmful effects.

In the 14th century the Black Plague was the greatest human disaster that’s ever come. An estimated 60 million people died in the Black Plague in Europe. But let me tell you what brought the Black Plague to a close. It was the Church, and not the doctors. In desperation those leaders in the Church began to read the Word of God. They read Leviticus 13:46, and it spoke of someone who had a plague. And it says, “All the days wherein the plague shall be in him, he shall be defiled. He is unclean. He shall dwell alone outside the camp.” That’s the principle that we use today when we put people in an isolation ward. But friend, they didn’t understand germs. You couldn’t have said, “He has a germ.” They’d say, “What?” They couldn’t say, “He has a virus.” They didn’t understand something that was invisible to the eye. But God taught these people so long ago that principle of isolation and quarantining, and putting that into practice saved millions of lives.

How can I know the Bible is the Word of God? by Adrian Rogers

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Is the Bible historically accurate? Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.

 The Bible and Archaeology – Is the Bible from God? (Kyle Butt)

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During the 1990′s I actually made it a practice to write famous atheists and scientists that were mentioned by Adrian Rogers and Francis Schaeffer and challenge them with the evidence for the Bible’s historicity and the claims of the gospel. Usually I would send them a cassette tape of Adrian Rogers’ messages “6 reasons I know the Bible is True,” “The Final Judgement,” “Who is Jesus?” and the message by Bill Elliff, “How to get a pure heart.”  I would also send them printed material from the works of Francis Schaeffer and a personal apologetic letter from me addressing some of the issues in their work. My second cassette tape that I sent to both Antony Flew and George Wald was Adrian Rogers’ sermon on evolution and here below you can watch that very sermon on You Tube.   Carl Sagan also took time to correspond with me about a year before he died. 

(Francis Schaeffer pictured below)

Image result for francis schaeffer

Adrian Rogers pictured below

I have posted on Adrian Rogers’ messages on Evolution before but here is a complete message on it.

Evolution: Fact of Fiction? By Adrian Rogers

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Featured artist is Frank Stella 

Frank Stella: A Retrospective

 

Image result for frank stella art

Frank Stella

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Frank Stella
Born Frank Philip Stella
May 12, 1936 (age 80)
Malden, Massachusetts
Nationality American
Known for Painting, Printmaking, Sculpture, Architecture
Movement Modernism, Minimal art, Abstract expressionism, Geometric abstraction, Abstract Illusionism, Lyrical abstraction, Hard-edge painting, Shaped canvas painting, Color field painting
Awards 1984 Harvard University Charles Eliot Norton lectures

Frank Philip Stella (born May 12, 1936) is an American painter and printmaker, noted for his work in the areas of minimalism and post-painterly abstraction. Stella lives and works in New York.

Biography[edit]

Frank Stella was born in Malden, Massachusetts,[1] to parents of Italian descent. His father was a gynecologist, and his mother was an artistically inclined housewife who attended fashion school and later took up landscape painting.[2]

After attending high school at Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, where he learned about abstract modernists Josef Albers and Hans Hofmann,[3] he attended Princeton University, where he majored in history and met Darby Bannard and Michael Fried. Early visits to New York art galleries fostered his artistic development, and his work was influenced by the abstract expressionism of Jackson Pollock and Franz Kline. Stella moved to New York in 1958, after his graduation. He is one of the most well-regarded postwar American painters still working today.[citation needed] He is heralded for creating abstract paintings that bear no pictorial illusions or psychological or metaphysical references in twentieth-century painting.[4]

As of 2015, Stella lives in Greenwich Village and keeps an office there but commutes on weekdays to his studio in Rock Tavern, New York.[2]

Work[edit]

Late 1950s and early 1960s[edit]

Upon moving to New York City, he reacted against the expressive use of paint by most painters of the abstract expressionist movement, instead finding himself drawn towards the “flatter” surfaces of Barnett Newman‘s work and the “target” paintings of Jasper Johns. He began to produce works which emphasized the picture-as-object, rather than the picture as a representation of something, be it something in the physical world, or something in the artist’s emotional world. Stella married Barbara Rose, later a well-known art critic, in 1961. Around this time he said that a picture was “a flat surface with paint on it – nothing more”. This was a departure from the technique of creating a painting by first making a sketch. Many of the works are created by simply using the path of the brush stroke, very often using common house paint.

This new aesthetic found expression in a series of new paintings, the Black Paintings (59) in which regular bands of black paint were separated by very thin pinstripes of unpainted canvas. Die Fahne Hoch! (1959) is one such painting. It takes its name (“The Raised Banner” in English) from the first line of the Horst-Wessel-Lied, the anthem of the National Socialist German Workers Party, and Stella pointed out that it is in the same proportions as banners used by that organization. It has been suggested that the title has a double meaning, referring also to Jasper Johns’ paintings of flags. In any case, its emotional coolness belies the contentiousness its title might suggest, reflecting this new direction in Stella’s work. Stella’s art was recognized for its innovations before he was twenty-five. In 1959, several of his paintings were included in “Three Young Americans” at the Allen Memorial Art Museum at Oberlin College, as well as in “Sixteen Americans” at the Museum of Modern Art in New York (60).

From 1960 Stella began to produce paintings in aluminium and copper paint which, in their presentation of regular lines of color separated by pinstripes, are similar to his black paintings. However they use a wider range of colors, and are his first works using shaped canvases (canvases in a shape other than the traditional rectangle or square), often being in L, N, U or T-shapes. These later developed into more elaborate designs, in the Irregular Polygon series (67), for example.

Also in the 1960s, Stella began to use a wider range of colors, typically arranged in straight or curved lines. Later he began his Protractor Series (71) of paintings, in which arcs, sometimes overlapping, within square borders are arranged side-by-side to produce full and half circles painted in rings of concentric color. These paintings are named after circular cities he had visited while in the Middle East earlier in the 1960s. The Irregular Polygon canvases and Protractor series further extended the concept of the shaped canvas.

Late 1960s and early 1970s[edit]

Frank Stella Harran II 1967

Stella began his extended engagement with printmaking in the mid-1960s, working first with master printer Kenneth Tyler at Gemini G.E.L. Stella produced a series of prints during the late 1960s starting with a print called Quathlamba I in 1968. Stella’s abstract prints used lithography, screenprinting, etching and offset lithography.

In 1967, he designed the set and costumes for Scramble, a dance piece by Merce Cunningham. The Museum of Modern Art in New York presented a retrospective of Stella’s work in 1970, making him the youngest artist to receive one.[citation needed] During the following decade, Stella introduced relief into his art, which he came to call “maximalist” painting for its sculptural qualities. The shaped canvases took on even less regular forms in the Eccentric Polygon series, and elements of collage were introduced, pieces of canvas being pasted onto plywood, for example. His work also became more three-dimensional to the point where he started producing large, free-standing metal pieces, which, although they are painted upon, might well be considered sculpture. After introducing wood and other materials in the Polish Village series (73), created in high relief, he began to use aluminum as the primary support for his paintings. As the 1970s and 1980s progressed, these became more elaborate and exuberant. Indeed, his earlier Minimalism [more] became baroque, marked by curving forms, Day-Glo colors, and scrawled brushstrokes. Similarly, his prints of these decades combined various printmaking and drawing techniques. In 1973, he had a print studio installed in his New York house. In 1976, Stella was commissioned by BMW to paint a BMW 3.0 CSL for the second installment in the BMW Art Car Project. He has said of this project, “The starting point for the art cars was racing livery. In the old days there used to be a tradition of identifying a car with its country by color. Now they get a number and they get advertising. It’s a paint job, one way or another. The idea for mine was that it’s from a drawing on graph paper. The graph paper is what it is, a graph, but when it’s morphed over the car’s forms it becomes interesting, and adapting the drawing to the racing car’s forms is interesting. Theoretically it’s like painting on a shaped canvas.”[citation needed]

In 1969, Stella was commissioned to create a logo for the Metropolitan Museum of Art Centennial. Medals incorporating the design were struck to mark the occasion.[5]

1980s and afterward[edit]

Frank Stella La scienza della pigrizia (The Science of Laziness), 1984, oil paint, enamel paint, and alkyd paint on canvas, etched magnesium, aluminum and fiberglass, National Gallery of Art, Washington DC

Stella’s Memantra, 2005, Metropolitan Museum of Art

From the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s, Stella created a large body of work that responded in a general way to Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick.[6] During this time, the increasingly deep relief of Stella’s paintings gave way to full three-dimensionality, with sculptural forms derived from cones, pillars, French curves, waves, and decorative architectural elements. To create these works, the artist used collages or maquettes that were then enlarged and re-created with the aids of assistants, industrial metal cutters, and digital technologies.[6] La scienza della pigrizia (The Science of Laziness), from 1984, is an example of Stella’s transition from two-dimensionality to three-dimensionality. It is fabricated from oil paint, enamel paint, and alkyd paint on canvas, etched magnesium, aluminum and fiberglass.

In the 1990s, Stella began making free-standing sculpture for public spaces and developing architectural projects. In 1993, for example, he created the entire decorative scheme for Toronto’s Princess of Wales Theatre, which includes a 10,000-square-foot mural. His 1993 proposal for a Kunsthalle and garden in Dresden did not come to fruition. In 1997, he painted and oversaw the installation of the 5,000-square-foot “Stella Project” which serves as the centerpiece of the theater and lobby of the Moores Opera House located at the Rebecca and John J. Moores School of Music on the campus of the University of Houston, in Houston, TX.[7][8] His aluminum bandshell, inspired by a folding hat from Brazil, was built in downtown Miami in 2001; a monumental Stella sculpture was installed outside the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

Stella’s wall-hung Scarlatti K Series was triggered by the harpsichord sonatas of Domenico Scarlatti and the writings of the U.S. 20th-century harpsichord virtuoso and musicologist Ralph Kirkpatrick, who made the sonatas widely known. (The title’s “K” refers to Kirkpatrick’s chronology numbers.) Scarlatti wrote more than 500 keyboard sonatas; Stella’s series today includes about 150 works.[9]

From 1978 to 2005, Stella owned the Van Tassell and Kearney Horse Auction Mart building in Manhattan’s East Village and used it as his studio. His nearly 30-year stewardship of the building resulted in the facade being cleaned and restored.[10] After a six-year campaign by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, in 2012 the historic building was designated a New York City Landmark.[11] After 2005, Stella split his time between his West Village apartment and his Newburgh, New York studio.[12]

Artists’ rights[edit]

Stella had been an advocate of strong copyright protection for artists such as himself. On June 6, 2008, Stella (with Artists Rights Society president Theodore Feder; Stella is a member artist of the Artists Rights Society[13]) published an Op-Ed for The Art Newspaper decrying a proposed U.S. Orphan Works law which “remove[s] the penalty for copyright infringement if the creator of a work, after a diligent search, cannot be located.”

In the Op-Ed, Stella wrote,

The Copyright Office presumes that the infringers it would let off the hook would be those who had made a “good faith, reasonably diligent” search for the copyright holder. Unfortunately, it is totally up to the infringer to decide if he has made a good faith search. Bad faith can be shown only if a rights holder finds out about the infringement and then goes to federal court to determine whether the infringer has failed to conduct an adequate search. Few artists can afford the costs of federal litigation: attorneys’ fees in our country vastly exceed the licensing fee for a typical painting or drawing.

The Copyright Office proposal would have a disproportionately negative, even catastrophic, impact on the ability of painters and illustrators to make a living from selling copies of their work… It is deeply troubling that government should be considering taking away their principal means of making ends meet—their copyrights.[14]

Exhibitions[edit]

Stella’s work was included in several important exhibitions that defined 1960s art[citation needed], among them the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum’s The Shaped Canvas (1965) and Systemic Painting (1966). The Museum of Modern Art in New York presented a retrospective of Stella’s work in 1970.[6] His art has since been the subject of several retrospectives in the United States, Europe, and Japan. In 2012, a retrospective of Stella’s career was shown at the Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg (de).[15]

Collections[edit]

Stella’s work is included in major international collections, including the Menil Collection, Houston; the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; National Gallery of Art; the Toledo Museum of Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the Portland Art Museum, Oregon; The Hunter Museum, Chattanooga, TN. In 2014, Stella gave his sculpture Adjoeman (2004) as a long-term loan to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.[16]

Recognition[edit]

Among the many honors he has received was an invitation from Harvard University to give the Charles Eliot Norton Lectures in 1984. Calling for a rejuvenation of abstraction by achieving the depth of baroque painting,[17] these six talks were published by Harvard University Press in 1986 under the title Working Space.[18]

In 2009, Frank Stella was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama.[19] In 2011, he received the Lifetime Achievement Award in Contemporary Sculpture by the International Sculpture Center. In 1996 he received an honorary Doctorate from the University of Jena in Jena, Germany, where his large sculptures of the “Hudson River Valley Series” are on permanent display, becoming the second artist to receive this honorary degree after Auguste Rodin in 1906.[20]

Art market[edit]

Stella joined dealer Leo Castelli’s roster of artists in 1959. Since 2014, he has been represented worldwide in an exclusive arrangement shared by Dominique Lévy Gallery and Marianne Boesky.[21][22]

Gallery[edit]

Interviews[edit]

  • Heti, Sheila (November–December 2008). “‘I’m All in Favor of the Shifty Artist'”. The Believer. 6 (9): 40–46.
  • De Antonio, Emile (director), Painters Painting: The New York Art Scene: 1940-1970, 1973. Arthouse films

References[edit]

  1. Jump up^ “Frank Stella Biography, Art, and Analysis of Works”. The Art Story. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
  2. ^ Jump up to:a b Deborah Solomon (September 7, 2015), The Whitney Taps Frank Stella for an Inaugural Retrospective at Its New HomeNew York Times.
  3. Jump up^ Peter Schjeldahl (November 9, 2015), “Big Ideas: a Frank Stella Retrospective”, The New Yorker
  4. Jump up^ Birmingham Museum of Art (2010). Birmingham Museum of Art : guide to the collection. [Birmingham, Ala]: Birmingham Museum of Art. p. 236. ISBN 978-1-904832-77-5.
  5. Jump up^ Finding aid for the George Trescher records related to The Metropolitan Museum of Art Centennial, 1949, 1960-1971 (bulk 1967-1970). The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Retrieved 8 August 2014.
  6. ^ Jump up to:a b c Frank Stella Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York.
  7. Jump up^ About the Stella Project in the Moores Opera House
  8. Jump up^ “Home”. Music.uh.edu. 2012-04-25. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
  9. Jump up^ Karen Wilkin (June 23, 2011), Complementary AbstractionistsWall Street Journal.
  10. Jump up^ 128 East 13th Street [1] Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation.
  11. Jump up^ “Van Tassell & Kearney Auction Mart Designation Report”(PDF). New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission. Retrieved 1 October 2014.
  12. Jump up^ Sightlines: Frank Stella Wall Street Journal, March 15, 2010.
  13. Jump up^ Artists Rights Society’s List of Most Frequently Requested Artists Archived July 2, 2015, at the Wayback Machine.
  14. Jump up^ Frank Stella, “The proposed new law is a nightmare for artists,” Archived October 7, 2008, at the Wayback Machine. The Art Newspaper, June 6, 2008.
  15. Jump up^ Rhodes, David (November 2012). “Frank Stella: The Retrospective, Works 1958-2012”. The Brooklyn Rail.
  16. Jump up^ Deborah Vankin (July 7, 2014), Abstract Frank Stella sculpture ‘Adjoeman’ joins Cedars-Sinai artworks Los Angeles Times.
  17. Jump up^ John Russell (March 18, 1984), Frank Stella at Harvard – The Artist as Lecturer New York Times.
  18. Jump up^ Frank Stella, Working Space (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1986), ISBN 0-674-95961-2. Listing at Harvard University Press website.
  19. Jump up^ White House Announces 2009 National Medal of Arts Recipients
  20. Jump up^ Frank Stella in Jena
  21. Jump up^ Carol Vogel (March 20, 2014), Seasonal Changes New York Times.
  22. Jump up^ Lévy, Dominique. “Artists”. Dominique Lévy Gallery. Retrieved 14 April 2015.

More references

External links[edit]

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Image result for john hospers

13. Immigration Symposium: John Hospers, A Libertarian Argument Against Open Borders

Published on Dec 15, 2016

Not everyone who wishes to come to the United States should be permitted to do so, says John Hospers.

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I sent a cassette tape of Adrian Rogers on Evolution to John Hospers in May of 1994 which was the 10th anniversary of Francis Schaeffer’s passing and I promptly received a typed two page response from Dr. John Hospers. Dr. Hospers had both read my letter and all the inserts plus listened to the whole sermon and had some very angry responses. If you would like to hear the sermon from Adrian Rogers and read the transcript then refer to my earlier post at this link.  Over the last few weeks I have posted  portions of Dr. Hospers’ letter and portions of the cassette tape that he listened to back in 1994, but today I want  to look at some other comments made on that cassette tape that John Hospers listened to and I will also post a few comments that Dr. Hospers made in that 2 page letter.

Here is a portion of Hospers’ June 2, 1994 letter to me: 

“One would have to stop the speaker (Adrian Rogers) at every turn and say THIS DOESN’T FOLLOW FROM WHAT YOU SAID JUST BEFORE, and THIS WORD IS AMBIGIOUS, YOU ARE TRADING ON AN EQUIVOCATION and then sometimes he just shifts the ground entirely, like using passages from the Bible to prove that the Bible itself is true. Any intelligent person sees these dishonest strategies at once. I was onto most of them by the time I was 14.”

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One of my favorite messages by Adrian Rogers is called  “WHO IS JESUS?”and he goes through the Old Testament and looks at the scriptures that describe the Messiah.  I want to encourage you to listen to this audio message which I will send to anyone anywhere anytime. I have given thousands of these CD’s away over the years that contain this message and they all contain the following story from Adrian Rogers (WHICH WAS INCLUDED ON THE CASSETTE TAPE I SENT TO DR. HOSPERS) .  Here is how the story goes:

Years ago Adrian Rogers counseled with a NASA scientist and his severely depressed wife. The wife pointed to her husband and said, “My problem is him.” She went on to explain that her husband was a drinker, a liar, and an adulterer. Dr. Rogers asked the man if he were a Christian. “No!” the man laughed. “I’m an atheist.”

“Really?” Dr. Rogers replied. “That means you’re someone who knows that God does not exist.”

“That’s right,” said the man.

“Would it be fair to say that you don’t know all there is to know in the universe?”

“Of course.”

“Would it be generous to say you know half of all there is to know?”

“Yes.”

“Wouldn’t it be possible that God’s existence might be in the half you don’t know?”

“Okay, but I don’t think He exists.”

“Well then, you’re not an atheist; you’re an agnostic. You’re a doubter.”

“Yes, and I’m a big one.”

“It doesn’t matter what size you are. I want to know what kind you are.”

“What kinds are there?”

“There are honest doubters and dishonest doubters. An honest doubter is willing to search out the truth and live by the results; a dishonest doubter doesn’t want to know the truth. He can’t find God for the same reason a thief can’t find a policeman.”

“I want to know the truth.”

“Would you like to prove that God exists?”

“It can’t be done.”

“It can be done. You’ve just been in the wrong laboratory. Jesus said, ‘If any man’s will is to do His will, he will know whether my teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority’ (John 7:17). I suggest you read one chapter of the book of John each day, but before you do, pray something like this, ‘God, I don’t know if You’re there, I don’t know if the Bible is true, I don’t know if Jesus is Your Son. But if You show me that You are there, that the Bible is true, and that Jesus is Your Son, then I will follow You. My will is to do your will.”

The man agreed. About three weeks later he returned to Dr. Rogers’s office and invited Jesus Christ to be his Savior and Lord.

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Adrian Rogers: Who is Jesus? [#2264]

Published on May 21, 2016

What makes this one Man unique? Why does He stand out above all others? Adrian Rogers gives three reasons why Jesus deserves pre-eminence. To explain Jesus Christ is impossible. To ignore Him is disastrous. To reject Him is fatal. Understand who Jesus Christ is.

Scripture References: Colossians 1:12-21
Series: The Mystery of History
This Message: https://www.lwf.org/products/2264DVD
This Series: https://www.lwf.org/products/CDA197
1. Who is Jesus? [#2264]
2. Jesus Christ: The Son of God and God the Son [#2265]
3. The Unfinished Story of Christmas [#2266]
4. Planning Your Future [#2268]

If you would like more information please visit these following websites:
Official Website: https: http://www.lwf.org/
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If you would like to contact LWF Ministries
Write to: PO Box 38300, Memphis, Tennessee 38183
Call: (901) 382-7900

Adrian Rogers: The Biography of the King [#2325]

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How can I know the Bible is the Word of God? by Adrian Rogers

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Is the Bible historically accurate? Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.

 The Bible and Archaeology – Is the Bible from God? (Kyle Butt)

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During the 1990′s I actually made it a practice to write famous atheists and scientists that were mentioned by Adrian Rogers and Francis Schaeffer and challenge them with the evidence for the Bible’s historicity and the claims of the gospel. Usually I would send them a cassette tape of Adrian Rogers’ messages “6 reasons I know the Bible is True,” “The Final Judgement,” “Who is Jesus?” and the message by Bill Elliff, “How to get a pure heart.”  I would also send them printed material from the works of Francis Schaeffer and a personal apologetic letter from me addressing some of the issues in their work. My second cassette tape that I sent to both Antony Flew and George Wald was Adrian Rogers’ sermon on evolution and here below you can watch that very sermon on You Tube.   Carl Sagan also took time to correspond with me about a year before he died. 

(Francis Schaeffer pictured below)