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Old 05-02-2001, 05:34 PM   #11
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1. 95%+

2. 60% +/- 5%

3. 30% +/- 5%

Note on Hercules: I think it possible there was a human model for the myth. Now did this human model have all the attributes later given to Hercules...No.
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Old 05-02-2001, 06:41 PM   #12
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And let's keep in mind that if the unicorn name Jesus of Naz. did exist, it still means nothing. Many have come saying they are a God on earth "Christ", the last one died in a fire in WACO.
 
Old 05-02-2001, 07:06 PM   #13
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by critical thinking made ez:
And let's keep in mind that if the unicorn name Jesus of Naz. did exist, it still means nothing. Many have come saying they are a God on earth "Christ", the last one died in a fire in WACO.</font>
Too true, critical!

Now I would like to take another poll.... how likely is it to you that there is a historical figure behind the following individuals, based on ancient records:

Eric the Red?

Enekpe? - (Africa) Goddess of the family and guardian of destiny. One story relates that when she saw that her tribe was losing a battle, she offered herself as a sacrifice to save her people, and was buried alive on the battlefield; her tribe was saved. (sounds oddly familiar, doesn't it?)

Quetzalcoatl? - feathered serpent god of MesoAmerica




[This message has been edited by katlynnhow (edited May 02, 2001).]
 
Old 05-02-2001, 11:05 PM   #14
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by katlynnhow:

Polycarp.... truth DOES change, all the time.</font>
Will the presumed truth of this statement never change?

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Old 05-02-2001, 11:57 PM   #15
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Personally, I need evidence to back up my beliefs and I've been doing a lot of research. The only way that I can see to prove (Julius) Caeser, Jesus, Hercules, or any other supposed historical character is to look up historical data on them. I find it amazing that so many people believe stuff without questioning anything, especially when it comes to religion. But to come to my point. I do believe that Julius Caesar existed because there are historical accounts of his life (just look up a guy named Livy). I also believe that Jesus lived because there are historians who also documented his life and death (check out
http://www.ccel.org/j/josephus/JOSEPHUS.HTM
http://members.aol.com/fljosephus/testimonium.htm ) I have not found any historical evidence to prove that Hercules ever existed, so I would say he might be based off of stories of strong men, but he himself never existed.
 
Old 05-03-2001, 12:15 AM   #16
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katlynnhow: to be honest, I have to side with Polycarp on this one. You acknowledge the possibility that some day you may have to change your position on the existence of Caesar. This acknowledgement alone should prevent you from assigning a 100% probability to his existence. Saying you can be 100% sure of something today, and 100% of it's opposite tomorrow, doesn't come across as very logical. This is exactly why I took 98% rather than 100% - although you can argue about 98% or 99.99%.

PhysicsGuy: You raise an interesting point. Does it make sense to assign an uncertainty to an uncertainty estimate? As a matter of fact, this is something I take an interest in for reasons totally removed from this debate, but more relevant to my Real Life (TM). I would really appreciate your honest thoughts on this.

Polycarp: You would need to convince me that anything with more than 50% probability should be regarded as 'true'. This is certainly not how we handle uncertainty in my line of business.

Nomad:
What? No numbers? I had expected better from you

fG

[This message has been edited by faded_Glory (edited May 03, 2001).]
 
Old 05-03-2001, 12:50 AM   #17
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Caesar - 95%

Before I read Doherty, I would have assigned the possibility of Jesus as described in the Gospels at 0%, but the possibility of a person who formed the basis of the story at 50% (based on Baysian principles). Now I think that the possibility of an actual person behind the Jesus of the Gospels is about 25%.

Hercules - 5%.
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Old 05-03-2001, 01:19 AM   #18
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by faded_Glory:
Time for a quick poll:

- How likely is it to you that there is some historical person behind the figure of Caesar as known from the ancient records?

- How likely is it to you that there is some historical person behind the figure of Jesus as known from the ancient records?

- How likely is it to you that there is some historical person behind the figure of Hercules as known from the ancient records?

My estimates:

98%, 75%, 5%

And you?

fG

</font>
Caesar: 99.9%

Yeshu'a bar Yossif: 95%

Hercules: 50-50 (never really much thought about this one. &lt;G&gt; )

Caesar has both rock solid (statuary) and metal solid (coins) evidence for his existence. Now, it is ever so slenderly possible that he was the GI Joe of his day, that these statues and coins were issued as sort of a marketing ploy to get folks to buy Egyptian corn (as if they had a choice! &lt;G&gt; ) but that is highly unlikely. Comic book characters generally aren't epileptics! &lt;G&gt;

Yeshu'a, on the other hand, has no such solidly grounded evidence. His is purely circumstantial; writings that post-date him by no less than 25 years. I take my lead from Crossan, however, and believe that the various Jesus trajectories that emerge in the middle-latter first century all lead back to a single point, and at that point you find a human character, recognizable or not that caught Palestine's attention sufficiently that legends accreted to him.

Hercules I give 50-50 as it is my working hypothesis that for any given legend, there is generally a human, however recognizable or not, at the core. Whether it's a Johnny Appleseed or a Robin Hood, usually there's someone unusual enough to catch people's eye that starts the legend rolling.

 
Old 05-03-2001, 01:31 AM   #19
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Polycarp:
[b] Yes, you do have the absolute right to be absolutely wrong. If being 100% certain of something doesn't make someone dogmatic, then what in the world does "dogmatic" mean?</font>
That you hold this to be true with a probability of one regardless of evidentiary support. Would you call it dogmatic if I were to say that I believe, with 100% surety, that physical contact with water in a liquid state will make one wet? Or that direct physical contact with the metal plate of a coal stove will injure one?

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2"> Does truth change from one day to the next? I'm trying to figure out how you can be 100% certain of something yet still open to changing your mind. </font>
Truth does not change; however, the perception of truth does.

One of my mantras is that I am always correct! (one with my inner circle of friends do not share!!! &lt;G&gt; ) If I believe something to be true, it would be rather inane of me to believe what I believe to be incorrect.

However, should you give me new evidence, something that I had either never before considered, or misconsidered, then my mind will change accordingly, and new "correct" conclusions will emerge. I might well have been wrong five minutes ago, but right now, I'm right again.


[QUOTE] If you're 100% certain, then you are saying there is 0% chance of being wrong. If you have zero chance of being wrong today, then how could truth change tomorrow.[QUOTE]

As I said, perceptions change. I have zero chance of being wrong today because according to the evidence, the information I have today, my conclusion is correct. Change my data base and my conclusion can well change accordingly.

And that is the definition of free thought, Polycarp. It is the ability to, combined with the inclination to assimilate new information and the willingness to see yesterday's conclusions scrapped accordingly.

 
Old 05-03-2001, 04:08 AM   #20
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Caesar: 99% (at least)

Jesus: Hmmm, maybe 60%

Hercules: 20%

How about Merlin? Writings allegedly from Myrrdin the Bard survive, and there are other accounts of him, so I'd rate him as 85%.
 
 

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