Upcoming ID meeting at Cold Spring Harbor

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CSHlogo.jpg

Many readers of this blog will be familiar with Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. CSHL is the Long Island educational and research institution that hosts some of the most important professional meetings in several biological disciplines. It has for decades been the “home campus” of phage, bacterial and yeast genetics, as well as of computational neuroscience, developmental biology and various branches of genomics, bioinformatics and systems biology.

As a frequent attendee of meetings and symposia at CSHL, I am on their regular mailing list. I recently got an announcement of a meeting to be inaugurated this December that should be of great interest to followers of Intelligent Design. The meeting, “Engineering Principles in Biological Systems” ought to be exactly the kind of forum at which “Intelligent Design” researchers present their conclusions.

The meeting announcement reads, in part:

There are two key ideas behind this meeting: that theoretical engineering principles that have been developed in the context of human engineered systems are useful in understanding biological function, and that these principles apply across scales, from the cellular to the organism level. In keeping with these ideas, we hope to attract researchers in fields ranging from bacterial systems biology to neural systems, with shared interest in engineering principles. Sessions will be broken up according to broad areas of engineering, and there will also be a session on evolution.

The conference is intended to foster cross-disciplinary exchange of ideas and expertise between engineers, mathematicians and biologists interested in the analysis of diverse biological systems through the application of engineering principles. While a number of speakers have been invited, please note that the majority of oral presentations will be drawn from openly submitted abstracts.

Topics of symposia include:

  • Engineering Principles: From Bacterial & Biochemical Systems to Neural Systems
  • Dynamics, Feedback & Control I
  • Dynamics, Feedback & Control II
  • Game Theory & Learning
  • Evolution & Synthetic Biology
  • Signaling & Communications

Now, as Jason Rosenhouse has discussed in his post on The State of ID Research, the ID movement has been quick to appropriate for itself the results of other people’s work. We might imagine that, rather than subject his thinking to critical review, Dembski will instead simply post an abstract or two from this meeting to his website, and claim credit for ID from work which he does not himself understand. I suspect that the mere fact that this CSH meeting invokes the analogy of engineering in its discussion of living systems will be proclaimed as another triumph for ID-think.

On the other hand, if the ID movement is sincerely interested in the themes of this meeting, they really ought to be sending one of their researchers (a grad student or post-doc, at least) to engage with other researchers in the field – their own field, if you believe what Dembski says. There would be some risk to sending a representative from the DI to such a meeting. It could end up being rather uncomfortable for the participant (I haven’t seen much evidence that there is any biologist associated with the DI that could hold up their end of a conversation at a meeting like this).

But this meeting presents a test of the sincerity of the ID movement’s claims to be concerned with any element of actual science. Is there anyone who can represent ID at this scientific meeting? Will there be any attempt from the DI to engage in scientific discussion with the people who best understand biological systems? Or will Dembski, Behe et al. continue to be satisfied with presenting their results to church youth groups and bible colleges?

The meeting runs December 3 - 6, 2006. The abstract deadline is September 15, 2006, so there’s still enough time to get an abstract together (though only if you’ve already been doing some research). I’ll be checking the CSHL site to see if any ID proponents are planning to present anything.

256 Comments

Don’t hold your breath…

I suppose they could put together their ideas as a flowchart or cartoon and present them in poster form.

But, why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?

They’ll just point to this meeting as further evidence that, despite the concerted efforts of a cabal of atheist scientists, the ID movement is growing, fluorishing, and bearing new scientific discoveries. Expect to see this cited, informally, in op-eds and lecture circuits.

Perhaps they can also claim to have contributed to a conference on parasitology.

While that meeting should be of particular interest to IDers, giving the “engineering” hence “design” implications, the fact is that they have an open invitation to all professional meetings. And they routinely decline to participate. Yet amazingly, the public still falls for the absurd claim that they are “shut out” because they dare to challenge “Darwinism.”

This ought to be right up DaveScot’s alley. Too bad he no longer applies his expertise in ID to public discussions after being sacked by Dembski. LOL

If you read uncommon descent the idea seems to be that a) all biological research that invokes engineering principles is ID research, and b) many of the people who do this kind of research really don’t believe in evolution, but won’t admit it for fear of damging their careers. Therefore no one who officialy represents ID needs to go becuase the scientific community is doing their research for them.

Can we apply for student travel funds from the U of E? I suppose I could add all the faculty members as co-authors if that would help. If not I will try the Delta Pi Gamma Research Institute, better known as the beer fund. I already have an abstract outline. I think it’s a dandy and combined with the type III secretory system modifications and the Panda outhouse it ought to wow those in attendance, especially if I put a keg beside my poster, maybe decorate it with some bamboo, add some background music.…

Delta Pi Gamma (Scientia et Fermentum)

Frank J wrote:

While that meeting should be of particular interest to IDers, giving the “engineering” hence “design” implications, the fact is that they have an open invitation to all professional meetings. And they routinely decline to participate.

What do you mean by “open invitation”? Does someone bother to email Dembski and Behe and tell them to come on down?

If I were Dembski or Behe I’d go and report on that meeting. Just being there would boost his credentials. It never hurts to meet your academic enemies face to face just to let them know you’re serious.

You would think if he was going to do this he would have done so already. Biomedical engineering, which is what this conference is about, has been around for 50 years. If any IDers do go, they will likely be sorely dissappointed. This meeting is about 3 types of people: those who understand biology, those who understand design, and those that understand both. I have been in biomedical engineering for 5 years and can tell you that far from engineering principles revealing signs of intelligent designer, it shows no end to bone-head design features that would likely end a human engineer in jail. I suspect this will likely be a routine issue at the conference, I can tell you it is nearly a daily issue in my courses.

The issue is, at least in my undergrad university we were first trained in engineering and biology/medicine seperately, then trained to put the two together. So I learned to think like an engineer before I learned to apply that thinking to biological and medical issues. Engineers are, of course, designers. When looking at anything, we are trained to ask “why is it designed like this”. This becomes extremely frustrating when dealing with biological systems. This question is useful in many instances. But for biolgical systems an annoyingly large amount of the time there is no answer to the question. It is how it is because of some random thing that means it couldn’t have been any other way. It is the exact opposite of human design, and it makes the human designers I know extremely frustrated. It seems very hard for engineers to accept this, it goes against everything I was trained and it appears what others I know were trained as well. But it is painfully obvious when looking at biological systems in any sort of detail, and is something we have all had to come to terms with.

This very well may explain why there is a disproportionate number of engineers in the ID community. They are trained to find design and purpose in what they see. If they don’t look close enough, or don’t understand what they are looking at it, it would be extremely easy to see design that simply isn’t there.

“Or will Dembski, Behe et al. continue to be satisfied with presenting their results to church youth groups and bible colleges?”

If only they were. Then at least one generation of school boards would be spared the former’s blathering.

Dembski, Behe, and Wells will probably charter a boat, anchor it in Cold Spring Harbor, present papers to each other and then claim they were shut out by the conspiracy of “evilutionists.”

What a gosh-darn shame that back in 1995, before the Wedge Document and The Design Inference and Darwin’s Black Box, before most of the current generation of creationist nonsense, the most Darwinian of philosophers, Dan Dennett, titled a chapter in Darwin’s Dangerous Idea with the snappy phrase Biology is Engineering.

Maybe Dembski could blog that Dennett is an IDer! After all, if Miller and Collins are IDers, why not?

I suppose they could put together their ideas as a flowchart or cartoon and present them in poster form.

Dembski should try placemats. They’ve always worked well for Kent Hovind.

I actually think that this could be a very interesting conference. The CS people are starting to get sophisticated enough about biology that they can really contribute something, and the biologists are getting quantitative enough to talk to the CS and math types.

When I first saw the meeting announcement, I was a bit dismayed at the engineering language, but, y’know, that’s how we’ve been thinking about these systems since we’ve been probing them. Not because they actually ARE engineered artifacts, but because engineering is something we can understand, and so makes a useful analogy. I don’t think we should spend any effort at all to rein in teleological language just so the IDists can’t challenge us on it. Instead, we should call THEM on it. If these conferences are about literal design in biology, then why aren’t any of THEM contributing?

(And the pathetic posters of Wells and Nelson, at huge meetings where one can escape by hanging out at the bar instead of defending his work, just don’t count.)

normdoering wrote:

What do you mean by “open invitation”? Does someone bother to email Dembski and Behe and tell them to come on down?

I think if they wanted entertainment by clowns they would hire…professionals, the ad libs are more adult.

Still .…Behe could line up a few more tricks and add psychic healing and crystal ball reading along with his definition of astrology as science.

…disproportionate number of engineers in the ID community. They are trained to find design and purpose in what they see…

Aren’t they trained to put science into action? Instead IDiocy engineers write trashy science like information theory says it ain’t possible; or it is designed because it looks designed; or 2nd LOT says it is not possible.

As for the entertainment how about an IDiocy overthrows Darwinism skit starring BillD in tights wrestling Behe dressed up to look like Darwin? Surely someone remembers the photomorph of that scene one of BillD courtiers put up on UD last year?

Todd wrote…

When looking at anything, we are trained to ask “why is it designed like this”. This becomes extremely frustrating when dealing with biological systems… an annoyingly large amount of the time there is no answer to the question.

Amen.

As an engineer myself, I look at the natural world all the time and think “what a wonderful, efficient, design”.

And then I catch myself; No, look close - what I really see is not a wonderful, efficient design, but a wonderful, efficient solution, and they’re two distinctly different things. As soon as I draw that distinction, I realize that the thing I’m looking at has none of the hallmarks of a top-down design, but many of the hallmarks of a incredibly elegant kluge.

And I can marvel at it nonetheless.

(For those not in the engineering community, “elegant kluge” is actually considered kind of a compliment, along the lines of “making lemonade”).

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Matt Wrote:

I actually think that this could be a very interesting conference. The CS people are starting to get sophisticated enough about biology that they can really contribute something, and the biologists are getting quantitative enough to talk to the CS and math types.

This isn’t just CS, it is engineering in general. Engineering has been contributing a lot to the study of biology and medicine for decades now, and this contribution is only increasing. And it is not just CS, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering (both solid and fluid mechanics), materials science, optical engineering, and a wide variety of other engineering-oriented fields have made large contributions to the study of medicine and biology. And I do not mean just developing equipment to do the testing, engineering approaches have been extremely helpful to pure research as well.

This is not because of intelligent design, quite the opposite. It is because the human body follows the same natural laws as machines. Fluid flowing through a tube is still fluid flowing through a tube whether the tube is biological or man-made. A flexible joint behaves like a flexible joint whether it is biological or man-made. Charged particles flowing from one point to another don’t cease to behave like charged particles just because they are in something alive. The living systems are naturally far more complicated, making analysis more difficult. But the same fundamental techniques still apply suprisingly well, even in highly simplified form, because the physics is ultimately still the same. This is not evidence of design, simply evidence that biological systems exist in the same universe as non-biological ones and thus are governed by the same rules.

Biomedical engineering is fundamentally an attempt to use engineering principles to figure out how living systems work, not to use design principles to figure out why living systems work. At best the analogy of design might be used from time to time, but I can honestly only remember one instance of this coming up in a positive manner but a great many examples of it coming up to show why it doesn’t work (or simply to make fun of the IDers and creationists, which actually happens a lot). Of course, this sometimes had to do with the focus on pathological conditions due to the medical focus, but certainly not always.

ID wants it the other way around. They want evidence of design, which does not exist, and living systems that are not bound by the same rules as all other systems in the universe, which is evidently not the case or biomedical engineering would not work. They are taking evidence against their position as evidence in support of it by fundamentally and grossly misinterpreting what biomedical engineers actually do and why they do it. This is something the ID community has become quite exceptional at doing..

shiva Wrote:

Aren’t they trained to put science into action? Instead IDiocy engineers write trashy science like information theory says it ain’t possible; or it is designed because it looks designed; or 2nd LOT says it is not possible.

Yes, you are quite right. The coursework does have the focus I mentioned to a large degree, but this in no way excuses their action. I was not attempting to justify it, simply explain it. Such actions are highly unethical and run directly against article 2 and the majority of article 3 of the Engineering Code of Ethics, which all Professional Engineers (i.e. engineers licensed to do engineering) are expected to follow:

2. Engineers shall perform services only in the areas of their competence.

a. Engineers shall undertake assignments only when qualified by education or experience in the specific technical fields involved. b. Engineers shall not affix their signatures to any plans or documents dealing with subject matter in which they lack competence, nor to any plan or document not prepared under their direction and control. c. Engineers may accept assignments and assume responsibility for coordination of an entire project and sign and seal the engineering documents for the entire project, provided that each technical segment is signed and sealed only by the qualified engineers who prepared the segment.

3. Engineers shall issue public statements only in an objective and truthful manner.

a. Engineers shall be objective and truthful in professional reports, statements, or testimony. They shall include all relevant and pertinent information in such reports, statements, or testimony, which should bear the date indicating when it was current. b. Engineers may express publicly technical opinions that are founded upon knowledge of the facts and competence in the subject matter.

This ought to be right up DaveScot’s alley. Too bad he no longer applies his expertise in ID to public discussions after being sacked by Dembski. LOL

This is the second reference I’ve seen to Springer being sacked at UD, but I haven’t heard any of the details. Anyone have a link or more info?

…ought to be exactly the kind of forum at which “Intelligent Design” researchers present their conclusions.”

I didn’t see clowns included in the invitation.

ID wants it the other way around. They want evidence of design, which does not exist, and living systems that are not bound by the same rules as all other systems in the universe, which is evidently not the case or biomedical engineering would not work. They are taking evidence against their position as evidence in support of it by fundamentally and grossly misinterpreting what biomedical engineers actually do and why they do it. This is something the ID community has become quite exceptional at doing..

Maybe those biomedical engineering firms or whatever should publicly forbid the use of words related to “design” when referring to naturally occurring processes and objects.

Nothing philosophical.

Just append a public statement about how ID deliberately looks for a few words and claim VICTORY!! and misrepresent their own research activities and are thus forced to make a few rules on what words cannot be used.

Either way, we need better public press.

The CS people are starting to get sophisticated enough about biology that they can really contribute something, and the biologists are getting quantitative enough to talk to the CS and math types.

Starting? Getting?

Nick Cozzarelli is rolling over in his grave. Some biologists have been working closely with mathematicians for years and some CS people have been contributing mightily to biological science for the same amount of time.

This is the second reference I’ve seen to Springer being sacked at UD, but I haven’t heard any of the details. Anyone have a link or more info?

Dembski caught him downloading porn.

“When looking at anything, we are trained to ask “why is it designed like this”. This becomes extremely frustrating when dealing with biological systems.”

It also makes us stand in awe of the elegant kludge, as stevaroni says. ( Note: I was interested in biology amongst other things as a child, then trained as engineer, and later as physicist. So I might be merely appreciating my confused and conflicted viewpoints. :-)

“This very well may explain why there is a disproportionate number of engineers in the ID community.”

Yes. I also have the impression from reading usenet groups that many cranks are retired engineers. We (donning my engineering hat) are trained at work to experiment in and make sense out of new areas or products. This easily translates in a mindset that doesn’t work well when disconnected from practical work.

“Dembski caught him downloading porn.”

Porn-mining, eh?

normdoering Wrote:

What do you mean by “open invitation”? Does someone bother to email Dembski and Behe and tell them to come on down?

Possibly, but they are undoubtedly fully aware of the meetings from the “call for papers” ads in the journals they scour for quotes to mine.

normdoering Wrote:

If I were Dembski or Behe I’d go and report on that meeting. Just being there would boost his credentials. It never hurts to meet your academic enemies face to face just to let them know you’re serious.

Absolutely, and if they were serious they would have been doing just that for more than a decade.

This is the second reference I’ve seen to Springer being sacked at UD, but I haven’t heard any of the details. Anyone have a link or more info?

There was a thread at UD that evolved into a discussion of the possible evolution of sexual behaviours such as polygamy. Dave, surprisingly, turned out to be very much in favour of the idea There was a semireligious clash of personalities between him and JanieBelle on one side, and Denyse O’Leary* and tinabrewer on the other. Outcome: Dave “retired”.

* Denyse is a new player on UD, who has been given shared control - not just moderator status - by Dembski. She’s fairly vocally Christian - I think their pretense of objectivity may be slipping eeever so slightly…

Todd wrote: This is not because of intelligent design, quite the opposite. It is because the human body follows the same natural laws as machines.[snip] But the same fundamental techniques still apply suprisingly well, even in highly simplified form, because the physics is ultimately still the same. This is not evidence of design, simply evidence that biological systems exist in the same universe as non-biological ones and thus are governed by the same rules[snip] ID wants it the other way around. They want evidence of design, which does not exist, and living systems that are not bound by the same rules as all other systems in the universe, which is evidently not the case or biomedical engineering would not work. They are taking evidence against their position as evidence in support of it by fundamentally and grossly misinterpreting what biomedical engineers actually do and why they do it. This is something the ID community has become quite exceptional at doing..

For example, witness the spectacle of DaveScot claiming to violate the 2ndLoT just by composing a sentence.

For example, witness the spectacle of DaveScot claiming to violate the 2ndLoT just by composing a sentence.

Laws of thermodynamics, laws of grammar, what’s the diff?

Comment #115988

Posted by Red Right Hand on July 31, 2006 11:49 PM (e) | kill

This is the second reference I’ve seen to Springer being sacked at UD, but I haven’t heard any of the details. Anyone have a link or more info?

Official Uncommonly Dense Discussion Thread at AtBC, beginning at page 161

In a nutshell, what happened was, after six months of Davetard bringing embarrassment to the blog, Denyse O’Leary made some comments on the blog about one of the posts, and Davetard, not knowing she and Dembski were Best Friends Forever, marked up her comments with his own argumentative comments written in boldface, as is his habit. They were pretty rude, and Dembski ended up deleting the whole thread, as is his habit. Well, shortly afterward, Dembski announces there’ll be no more marking up of comments by the administrators. Davetard objects and says for all the work he does for Dembski, he deserves that power, and if he doesn’t have it, you can kiss is services goodbye. Whereupon Dembski said “goodbye!” So Davetard deports himself in the usual manner, tells O’Leary to f*** herself, calls her a hermaphrodite, and a dyke, and makes lots of comments about how ugly she is, and how she’s a fundy, and Dembski’s a fundy too. And now she co-moderates the blog along with Dembski, and essentially nothing’s changed, Dembski still bans anyone who looks at him sideways.

And now she co-moderates the blog along with Dembski, and essentially nothing’s changed,

That’s not quite true – UD is now much more boring and now features even more Jesus.

yehuda freeman Wrote:

If proponents of evolution theory, Darwinism and ID would allow themselves to learn just a few pages of the work of the 6th Lubavitcher Rebbe, for example, all of their questions would disappear.

I’d like to know how the Lubavitcher Rebbe accounts for the patterns of genetic variation in mitochondrial cytochrome C across the eukaryotic organisms. If, as I suspect, said Rebbe never heard of cytochrome C, then his opinions on evolutionary biology are unlikely to be helpful or relevant.

Or, of course, he could always try to explain whether humans were created before or after the other animals; would Lilith be involved?

Stephen Wells,

Your supposition about the sixth Rebbe, whose name was Joseph Isaac Schneerson (1880-1950) is right on target. He had no secular education to speak of, was opposed to any form of education other than religious indoctrination for his many thousands of followers, and there is no indication that he even knew mitochondria existed.

The story is very different however in the case of the seventh rebbe (now deceased without any heirs to succeed him in leading the movement). He was Menachem Mendel Schneerson, a giant in knowledge of Torah, spoke at least six languages fluently and, unlike all other chasidic leaders, received an extensive secular education at the Serbonne, University of Berlin and University of Moscow. His writings and talks make it abundantly clear that he was very highly educated and a profound thinker. I would compare him to Maimonides in his generation. Alas, he was a YEC supporter and argued that all the evidence to the contrary does not constitute “proof”.

Yehuda Freeman’s comments make it clear that he is a victim of that movement’s worldwide outreach programs. It is well known that most of the folks who change their lives around on the basis of the propoganda they pick up from this and similar movements are typically uneducated nutcases looking for some direction to their lives, and Yehuda Freeman is evidence of this. Much like any extremist cultist he needs to be deprogrammed. He has my sympathy.

The proof still stands.

The point was your claim that you have an open mind. No one with an open mind would make such a claim in light of the responses here, bozo.

It is well known that most of the folks who change their lives around on the basis of the propoganda they pick up from this and similar movements are typically uneducated nutcases looking for some direction to their lives, and Yehuda Freeman is evidence of this. Much like any extremist cultist he needs to be deprogrammed.

Sounds like any typical ID/creationist. They are all FULL of talk about how life without ID/creationism “has no purpose”.

Yehuda Freeman Wrote:

I spent the first half of my life in pool halls and Universities. I became a Baal Teshuva, a returnee to true faith of more literally “Master of Repentence” when I was 27 but the transition has been extremely challenging to say the least. One thing I have discovered however, is that the level of intelligence demonstrated by real Hassidic scholars far exceeds that of secular scholars to the point of not even being comparable.

I, personally, have never noticed any nontrivial intelligence among Hassidim, except for their extraordinary talents at welfare pimping.

If proponents of evolution theory, Darwinism and ID would allow themselves to learn just a few pages of the work of the 6th Lubavitcher Rebbe, for example, all of their questions would disappear.

I have read the four volumes of his Likkutei Dibburim, and frankly, they are amazingly bizarre even by Jewish standards. Really, there is nothing he (nor the 7th rebbe, whom I think you must have meant) that comes even close to saying anything about biology or science in general that isn’t total ignorance.

Note that Yehuda Freeman has never said that reading these particular mystical works will result in questions being answered. Only that the questions “would disappear”.

Sounds ominous.

Carol Clouser Wrote:

Your supposition about the sixth Rebbe, whose name was Joseph Isaac Schneerson (1880-1950) is right on target. He had no secular education to speak of, was opposed to any form of education other than religious indoctrination for his many thousands of followers, …

Rather ironically, the little bit of secular education he did have was too much for his childhood religious instructor, who resigned and founded his own splinter group, the melachim.

The story is very different however in the case of the seventh rebbe .… He was Menachem Mendel Schneerson, a giant in knowledge of Torah, spoke at least six languages fluently and, unlike all other chasidic leaders, received an extensive secular education at the Serbonne, University of Berlin and University of Moscow.

The stories of his secular education are greatly exaggerated. He had some exposure, but apparently nothing more than a few courses.

His writings and talks make it abundantly clear that he was very highly educated and a profound thinker. I would compare him to Maimonides in his generation.

Almost unanimously, the rest of the Orthodox Jewish community did not consider him to be a profound thinker. What little I’ve read by him has left me underwhelmed.

Alas, he was a YEC supporter and argued that all the evidence to the contrary does not constitute “proof”.

In other words, he was highly uneducated and abysmal in his profundity.

Matt Wrote:

Note that Yehuda Freeman has never said that reading these particular mystical works will result in questions being answered. Only that the questions “would disappear”.

Sounds ominous.

Yeah, I noticed that too. Not so much “ominous” as “cult-like”, which is no surprise coming from a Lubavitcher.

Problem is, cult recruitment really doesn’t work so well on an impersonal format like the internet. You have to personally find an emotionally troubled person, lure him into the Crazy Van and bombard him with propaganda. So yes, questions will ‘disappear’ but that’s more due to poor air circulation, food deprivation, and general bombardment with silly nonsense, than the provision of an actual answer to any question.

One thing I have discovered however, is that the level of intelligence demonstrated by real Hassidic scholars far exceeds that of secular scholars to the point of not even being comparable.

As anyone here knows, intelligence (at least the opinion of) is a very relative thing.

Compared to you, of course they seem intelligent.

People who buy get-rich-quick books thinks the author must be so intelligent.

Your comparison is moot because it is obvious you have never read anything by a secular scholar in your life. What’s more, you are comparing writings on religious matters, then point to secular scholars as being idiots for not writing on religious matters.

Then, there’s another way of perceiving intelligence. Among the ignorant masses, “intelligent” is someone who says something you agree with.

Did Yehuda give his qualifications and education yet? I did as he requested of me and it doesn’t seem fair that he goes back on his promise.

William Emba wrote:

“Almost unanimously, the rest of the Orthodox Jewish community did not consider him to be a profound thinker. What little I’ve read by him has left me underwhelmed.”

He was a very controversial figure and many disagreed with him. But I have yet to encounter anyone who knew about him who would claim that he was anything but a profound thinker.

You are missing out on some great stuff if you have read little by him. Try LIKUTEI SICHOS, of which there are 38 volumes (latest count), especially his analysis of Rashi’s commentary. Some of that stuff will leave you shaking your head in amazement at how incisive the human mind can be.

Carol Clouser Wrote:

He was a very controversial figure and many disagreed with him. But I have yet to encounter anyone who knew about him who would claim that he was anything but a profound thinker.

I have met many who know about him, and amongst the non-Lubavitchers, not one of them has ever given him the least credit in the thinking department.

You are missing out on some great stuff if you have read little by him. Try LIKUTEI SICHOS,…

I have. The little I looked at was underwhelming.

Why would somebody want questions to disappear, anyway? Generally people prefer to get answers rather than to forget there was a question to start with.

Henry

The glowing claims about Schneerson are quite similar to Scientologists’ claims about Hubbard.

I love this bit from www.virtualjewishlibrary.org:

With the fall of communism and the miracles during the gulf war, the Rebbe stated that these are heralding a time of peace and tranquillity for all mankind, the time of Moshiach (messiah).

The miracles during the gulf war? Peace and tranquillity for all mankind? I’m shaking my head in amazement at how delusional the human mind can be.

Here’s some of the work of that “incisive mind”:

http://www.noahide.com/rebbe.htm

A bunch of mumbo jumbo that illustrates the mind as a meme processing machine that can operate at a considerable distance from external reality. But I was struck by this brilliant gem of ironic comedy:

I have insisted again and again not to pay attention to any rumors about what I allegedly have said. Only my written statements are to be believed.

–Paraphrase of well-known warning by the Rebbe

anonymous_coward Wrote:

Did Yehuda give his qualifications and education yet? I did as he requested of me and it doesn’t seem fair that he goes back on his promise.

I believe he may think that he did in this post: http://www.pandasthumb.org/archives[…]mment-117298

He didn’t give any detail beyond the fact that he spent some time at “Universities” before going head into a rant about his religious conversion.

Hope that helps,

Grey Wolf

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This page contains a single entry by Matt Brauer published on July 31, 2006 5:30 PM.

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