Skip to main content

Carrier talk on Jesus, history and reason this Friday - see you there?

This should be a really interesting talk (organized by myself for CFI UK) from one of the world's leading skeptics. He is the author of a controversial new book on the quest for the historical Jesus. Hope to see some of you there...

Richard Carrier: Bayes' Theorem and Historical Reasoning: How Historical Methods Can Be Improved and Why They Need to Be

16th November 2012

Stamford Street Lecture Theatre
7.30pm - 9pm (7.00pm registration)





Drawing from his new book Proving History: Bayes's Theorem and the Quest for the Historical Jesus (Prometheus, 2012), Dr. Carrier will explain what Bayes' Theorem is (in terms anyone can understand), how it underlies all valid historical methods even when we don't realize it, and why knowing this can improve historical reasoning and argument in all fields of history.

£7 - General
£5 - Students / BHA members
Free - "Friends of CFI"(and LAAG)

Venue

Stamford Street Lecture Theatre
Franklin Wilkins Building
Waterloo Campus
King’s College London
127 Stamford Street
London
SE1 9NQ
Nearest tube: Waterloo

19.00 for a 19.30 start

About the speaker

Richard Carrier is an American historian and philosopher and author of several books which have received international attention, including The Empty Tomb and Why I am Not a Christian. Richard now specializes in the modern philosophy of naturalism, the origins of Christianity, and the intellectual history of Greece and Rome. Richard also writes for and was Editor in Chief of the Secular Web (Internet Infidels).
http://www.richardcarrier.info

Comments

wombat said…
Regarding historical explanations of the resurrection of Jesus, another data point is in the BBC news today

"Sam Ledward turns 106 after being declared dead in 1936

The former joiner crashed his motorbike in 1936 and says he was in a coma so deep that doctors ordered his body to be taken away.

He was being taken to the mortuary when a hospital porter noticed his "corpse" move and returned him to the ward.
"

full article here

Even in relatively modern times coma and death could be confused so why not in 1st century middle east?
Steven Carr said…
If Jesus was in a coma and revived, why would Paul explain that 'the last Adam became a life-giving spirit'?
wombat said…
Paul had his own ideas obviously.

What struck me was that the Sam Ledward case was a specific instance of someone who appeared dead in the view of expert witnesses, having suffered serious injury and later revived. Here is a documented resurrection with no divinity involved.
Sketch Sepahi said…
Steven Carr, how would Paul know? It's not as if Paul ever had any actual interaction with Jesus. Paul expressed his own beliefs. Whether those beliefs might be mistaken is precisely the subject under consideration. Therefore, those beliefs aren't admissible as evidence for their own veracity. That's circular reasoning.

Popular posts from this blog

EVIDENCE, MIRACLES AND THE EXISTENCE OF JESUS

(Published in Faith and Philosophy 2011. Volume 28, Issue 2, April 2011. Stephen Law. Pages 129-151) EVIDENCE, MIRACLES AND THE EXISTENCE OF JESUS Stephen Law Abstract The vast majority of Biblical historians believe there is evidence sufficient to place Jesus’ existence beyond reasonable doubt. Many believe the New Testament documents alone suffice firmly to establish Jesus as an actual, historical figure. I question these views. In particular, I argue (i) that the three most popular criteria by which various non-miraculous New Testament claims made about Jesus are supposedly corroborated are not sufficient, either singly or jointly, to place his existence beyond reasonable doubt, and (ii) that a prima facie plausible principle concerning how evidence should be assessed – a principle I call the contamination principle – entails that, given the large proportion of uncorroborated miracle claims made about Jesus in the New Testament documents, we should, in the absence of indepen

What is Humanism?

What is Humanism? “Humanism” is a word that has had and continues to have a number of meanings. The focus here is on kind of atheistic world-view espoused by those who organize and campaign under that banner in the UK and abroad. We should acknowledge that there remain other uses of term. In one of the loosest senses of the expression, a “Humanist” is someone whose world-view gives special importance to human concerns, values and dignity. If that is what a Humanist is, then of course most of us qualify as Humanists, including many religious theists. But the fact remains that, around the world, those who organize under the label “Humanism” tend to sign up to a narrower, atheistic view. What does Humanism, understood in this narrower way, involve? The boundaries of the concept remain somewhat vague and ambiguous. However, most of those who organize under the banner of Humanism would accept the following minimal seven-point characterization of their world-view.

Plantinga's Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism refuted

Here's my central criticism of Plantinga's Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism (EAAN). It's novel and was published in Analysis last year. Here's the gist. Plantinga argues that if naturalism and evolution are true, then semantic epiphenomenalism is very probably true - that's to say, the content of our beliefs does not causally impinge on our behaviour. And if semantic properties such as having such-and-such content or being true cannot causally impinge on behaviour, then they cannot be selected for by unguided evolution. Plantinga's argument requires, crucially, that there be no conceptual links between belief content and behaviour of a sort that it's actually very plausible to suppose exist (note that to suppose there are such conceptual links is not necessarily to suppose that content can be exhaustively captured in terms of behaviour or functional role, etc. in the way logical behaviourists or functionalists suppose). It turns o