Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Eucharist Miracles: Miracle of Lanciano "Update"

I have received the paper by Dr. Linoli. And the data and results are both Unsurprising and Uninteresting. That's right scientists you can keep your hats on because miracles still don't have any type of scientific proof of ever occurring.

I will examine parts of the paper by Linoli, in terms of the claim that the blood and flesh are somehow miraculously preserved and fresh.(miraculously preserved and fresh for the means of this write up will be defined as follows: shows no signs of decay, tested for biological activity, presence of proteins and minerals in equal amounts to those present in fresh human blood.)

The flesh was found to be of human cardiac tissue, which is not surprising. But what of the claim that this was miraculously preserved.
At last, the action of long centuries on the Miraculous tissue, provoked the loss of anatomic pieces and consequently only one cavity was formed.
Therefore, it is evident that without any cover, all the fluid phase inside the tissue was lost, making it mummified and reducing its size, that results lower compared to a normal heart.
The surface is smooth, never raised or chapped or carved. We can widely notice little white spots strewn sometimes chapped, or like millet-seed, often flowing, soft, detachable, not belonging to any tissue trace, hardly diluted into a physiological solution (the microscopic investigation, revealed hyphomycetes colonies, from evident contamination). On the peripheral side of the tissue round sheet there are little holes, ancient signs of nail crossings.
The tissue structure appears markedly abnormal due to the lack of histochemical detectability of nuclei and to some degree of global homogenization.
Considering the nail holes in many points of the frame, we must conclude that the Miraculous Heart fragment which appeared on the altar of the little Church in Lanciano consisted of living material therefore tending, due to subsequent "rigor mortis", to concentrical retraction; the Basilian monks tried to prevent it, by nailing the Heart Fragment on a wood piece, and this, already small, retracted again in centrifugal direction, finally tearing up
The above are direct quotes from the journal article. Rigor mortis does not set in on fresh tissue samples! I don't think that I even need to rebut the claims that this is fresh tissue samples, it even had saprophytes growing on it.

Next the blood, as I quote again.
A minute Blood fragment has been included in paraffin according to Lenzi's technique.
At the Emallume-Eosine staining, no cellular element can be detected, with the exception of a yellow-dark-green granular material with foreign bodies of vegetable origin.
That means that no cellular structures were identified, meaning no recognizable cells were left in the sample. Fresh blood contains blood cells, it is a contradiction to say that something is miraculously fresh when cellular structures and cells are no longer present. Foreign bodies of vegetable origin? The samples were contaminated also with an untested foreign vegetable.
Teichmann's reaction modified by Bertrand with hydrochlorate hematine and Takayama's reaction with hemo-chromogen, have been carried out on the ancient Blood in Lanciano with negative results, together with human Blood samples normally dried, which gave positive results.

The negativity of Teichmann-Bertrand's test and Takayama's test does not exclude the presence of Blood, as these tests can become negative due to sample denaturation.
This test showed negatives on both Teichmann's and Takayam's reactions, while showing positives on the dried control (lab blood). These tests don't work when the blood being tested is extremely decayed or contaminated. (Note how this also shows that the blood samples are not fresh or preserved miraculously, the article even states that the sample was denatured).
The percentage composition of proteins in the liquid tested is similar to that known for human normal Blood serum (Henry).
The protein content is as follows: albumin 61.93 % (normal values 52-68%). Alfa 1 globulin 2.38% (normal values 2.4-5.3%), Alfa 2 globulin 7.14% (normal values 6,6-13,5%), Beta globulin in 7,14% (normal values 8.5-14.5%), Gamma globulin 21.42% (normal values 10.7-21%).
Globulin-albumin ratio is of 1.62 the normal value being 1.13-1.73.
This study confirms the possibility that organic material (such as proteins) may be kept for a very long period, as if the fatal destiny of Flesh could be overcome.
The discovery of blood group AB proteins and antigens in the ancient Flesh and Blood in Lanciano after 1200 years, is in agreement with the discovery of proteins in Egyptian mummies dated since 4000 years (Hanseman), and since 5000 years (Meyer),
This study was done in the 1970's, today we find that serum proteins can and have been easily preserved under harsh circumstances. Proteins were extracted from samples over 4,000 years old and even from 100,000 year old from blood on tools that were exposed to nature and not kept inside a church.

The paper even concedes on the point that organic materials may be kept for a very long period, as has already been observed in mummies at the time, where the techniques used in Linoli's experiments were developed.

While calcium was markedly increased, in the blood we found reduced levels of phosphorus, potassium and sodium. This mineral reduction can be ascribed to ageing processes or the progressive loss of tissue contents during the centuries, or to exchange of minerals between the tissue and the glass tube wall; to avoid this, in modern times, inert material containers are used for precious solutions.
The discovery of reduced elements within the sample are a direct result of the aging process, as is described within the paper. Note that the following assumptions by Linoli were neither tested or verified.
The increase in calcium levels (mg. 114,29%) in the ancient Blood in Lanciano can be related to falling into the goblet of building powder enriched with calcium salt, or to the vegetable fragments (flowers) found during the histological study of Blood.
The calcium levels are through the roof, (11times the normal amount, Did GOD have cancer? Or was he even human?) Also this is in obvious conflict with Linoli's recent assertions that the blood is the same as fresh human blood. Humans don't have these levels of elements in their blood!

I feel it necessary to address one more point before closing the case on this non-miraculous occurrence.
Supposing that the heart was taken from a dead body, we have to consider that only a trained hand in anatomic dissection could have obtained, with no difficulty, from a cave organ an "even and continuous slice" considering that the first anatomic dissections on human body, have been made after the 14th century (Diagnosis is fully confirmed by Prof. Ruggero Bertelli, Professor of Human Normal Anatomy at Siena University, whom I gratefully thank).
The case was made that this heart piece could not have been cut by man. Taken from his very own paper. He says that someone needs to be trained in order to cut the piece of heart. Subjectivity at its best. Note how he does not assert that this task cannot be done by human hands, because your average med. school student could have cut the heart out better. Not only does this statement not belong in the paper it is outrageous, Linoli only examined a small fragment of the heart tissue, I guess they decided to neglect the holes made by nails in this decision.

In conclusion, I would like to say that this is a very poor excuse of a paper to be tauting around as scientific evidence for a miracle. Not only does the paper repeatedly say that the samples were decayed, but nowhere within the paper is anything miraculous. A piece of rigor mortis human tissue and some decayed blood samples remnants were examined. This paper in no way proves that the flesh is somehow GOD meat. If you do not agree with my interpretation of the paper you are welcome to it yourself as I have uploaded it at the bottom.

Warning Amateur psycho analysis incoming:
I think I know the problem with a large portion of religious people. They fail to question the things told to them by authoritative figures. When priests or their parents tell them "miracles exist and we have great evidence to back up all of our claims" I find it very sad that these people fail to ever actually critically exam what they are being told. Santa Claus is a fantasy for little children, GOD, religion, and miracles are the fantasies of grown-ups who never found reality.

A word of advice to any religious person who actually made it through my poor writing skills, check up on everything that is told to you as being true. The best advice anyone ever gave to me was this. During a conversation I had with an old friend from Denmark whom I met in my first semester of college. We were watching television and a preacher came on claiming that he could heal the sick, but he needed our money to continue doing it. My friend told me "look at that, religion is a joke" to which I replied "ya some of the things in the bible probably never happened", to which he replied "some things? The whole thing is bullshit, its all made up fantasy" and a light flashed in my head, "and I decided to check on the bible and guess what. Reading the bible made me an atheist. So I urge all of you to start reading bible, because reading the bible is probably the number 1 cause of Atheism.

Reuploaded this shitty paper since I see that people can't get it still: http://docs.google.com/fileview?id=0B9kNbgL3NNN1YTdmYzQ0ZTUtNjAxMS00NWI3LTgwOTgtOWMyNzgzOGY4MTNj&hl=en

15 comments:

Eric said...

Bravo! Again, wonderful research. I was wrong in identifying the blood with fresh blood, but that was a mistake that I made, not Linoli, the UN, or the Catholic articles reporting on the miracle. The remarkable phenomenon is that it has survived that long at all considering it was exposed to the atmosphere, environment, and parasites, etc. I haven't translated the entire thing, but I know that this bit is quite relevant to the conversation: (quite roughly translated from google)

"although it is recognized that goal is very different the situation of a body mummificato with known procedures and repaired at most contacts with the external environment, and that of a strip of myocardial and blood clots left in their natural state over the centuries and In most, exposed to physical agents of atmospheric, environmental and parrassitari."

After all, there must have been some reason the WHO/UN stated that "the preservation is not due to nature or the hand of man, and goes against any law of nature."

Brownian said...

Great work. This supposed analysis came up on an apologist's site yesterday, only the author instead focused on the magical and mysterious WHO/UN validation:

In 1973, the World Health Organization (WHO) appointed its own scientific commission to scrutinize Dr. Linoli’s findings. During a 15-month period, over 500 tests were conducted, all of which supported the conclusions listed above. WHO’s scientific research was published in New York and Geneva in 1976, confirming “science’s failure to explain the Miracle.”Odd that this WHO report, confirming what hundreds of millions of the faithful already know, should be so oft-quoted yet impossible to find in its original form. Another sign of the Evil Atheist Conspiracy?

Shhh.

Again, great post.

Daniel said...

Congratulation for this interesting and clear analysis.

BTW, the original paper seems to be almost impossible to find online; I'd like to review it too, and I checked the link you posted at mediafire.com and there is no file available. I'd appreciate if you could share that file again, or if you could publish a link where the file could be obtained.

Thanks in advance,

Daniel

Peter Bishop said...

Agreed. This "evidence" was just used in a sermon in an ordinary Catholic Mass on Aug 2 that I attended to verify the existence of transubstantiation--turning the bread and wine in body and blood. Please re-post the original article...

Paul Boire said...

Hi
Thank you for your post. I have no expertise at all in this field, but will confess to finding studies from the U of Sienna and the WHO confirming them as at least meriting serious consideration. ZENIT reported recent remarks from Dr. Linoli who apparently was a department head at his university. I would be interested to hear his response or other medical considerations of the tests. Odd that you happen to refer to the Shroud of Turin, for I understand that the Oxford man who ran the carbon dating, changed his opinion and considered it the authentic burial cloth. However, these items are just that; items and should they prove to have been without merit, ...so what? The religious and philosophical foundations of religion are certainly in concert with any good science which in no manner affirms mindless-physical-stuff-only-ism as any number of good arguments affirm. In any case, thank you for printing this consideration of the Lanciano host. I will hope to find further expert testimony adressing its putative merits. Incidentally, its aplogetic value, rather like the events at Fatima in 1917, aren't so much for the 'faithful' and faith is not at all about wishful thinking and platitudes. If your opinion holds up agains the WHO and Dr Linoli, then good for you and you have done a great service in pursuing truth, truth not being to me a not-even-accidental byproduct of cosmic dust storms.

Gerard P Lally said...

I don't understand the obsession of secular atheists with scientific evidence. If you are going to insist that something is real or true only if it can be scientifically proven then the very first thing you need to do is prove the insistence itself.

"Something is real or true only if it can be scientifically proven."

Is this statement true?

If you say it is, then prove it. Scientifically. With solid, physical evidence.

Can you? No, of course you can't.

The truth is there is no scientific test in the world which can prove this statement true or false, which means that you hold something as true which cannot be scientifically proven.

This is the ultimate irony which secular atheists never face: there is a metaphysical underpinning to their epistemology which cannot be proven - ever. And, even funnier, they hold dearly to this metaphysical truth despite never being able to prove it scientifically.

May the good God and his holy Mother bless you!

Daniel said...

Hi Gerard,

Something I have been investigating a lot of time is dialectic. It is funny to see the arguments of a discussion under that prism, especially if they are misleading or plain wrong, but seems to be right, thus mean, they are fallacies.

I recommend everyone to read the "The Art of Being Right" of Arthur Schopenhauer. There Schopenhauer analyzes 38 methods to oppose other arguments, but most of them are logic fallacies.

In particular, what you said is:

"Something is real or true only if it can be scientifically proven.
Is this statement true?
If you say it is, then prove it. Scientifically. With solid, physical evidence.
Can you? No, of course you can't."

You are falling in several fallacies:

One, you are setting a "straw man", dealing that if nobody can prove what YOU said, then nobody can prove the initial facts and conclusions...

Second, you are using the fallacy of "burden of prof". As you challenge everybody else to prove what you said (actually, you are saying that it is impossible), you are trying to say the original article is false because it can't be proven, too. But, if you want to assert something, YOU have to prove it first, not your opponent. I don't find that demonstration in your sayings.

Maybe more fallacies could be found in your argument, but I am not an expert on that, but what I really could say is that you really don't know what the scientific method is.

"The purpose of the scientific method is to test a hypothesis, a proposed explanation about how things are, via repeatable experimental observations which can contradict the hypothesis so as to fight this observer bias"

So, in science you look for "the truth" not by looking for positive evidence but for NEGATIVE evidence that contradicts the starting hypothesis. For that, you need to find out evidence, good evidence.

Then, science never can prove that something is really true, but only that is "not false" under the light of the evidence you have seen until that time.

Therefore, your starting assertion about science is proving (or trying to prove) something as 'true' from the beginning is plain wrong, in my honest opinion.

Therefor, your question "Is this statement true?", no, it is not true. Your statement is false, and it doesn't changes at all the information or the conclusions this article shows.

Gerard P Lally said...

Thank you for the reading suggestion Daniel. I understand that I, as a Catholic Irishman, probably come across as a bit of a simpleton so I do appreciate it when people try to enlighten me.

But I still think you are obscuring what is a very simple question here. Do you agree with the following statement:

"Something is real or true only if it can be scientifically proven"?

If you do, then you should support the statement by providing evidence in its favour. The statement itself demands this.

If you don't, then it means you don't accept that evidence is necessary to prove a hypothesis, and therefore you shouldn't demand that others provide it when you can't provide it for your own metaphysical and a priori positions.

Daniel said...

Gerard, you said:

"Something is real or true only if it can be scientifically proven"?

Let suppose I say "YES" and lets follow analyze its consecuences.

If we accept that only things that science "has proven" are really real or true, that necessarily means that anything that science HAS NOT proven necessarily is unreal or false.

That has NO SENSE. A simply argument is: there are TONS of things that science has not discovered yet, and then they had never been proved by science. So, ALL of those things are simple unreal or false? Absolutely NO.

Therefore, your affirmation is FALSE.

But you also say "If you don't [agree], then it means you don't accept that evidence is necessary to prove a hypothesis, and therefore you shouldn't demand that others provide it when you can't provide it for your own metaphysical and a priori positions."

I DO accept that evidence could prove an hypothesis is not false, because science never could prove that something is true; Evidence does not proves an hypotesis is true, just that it is not false.

The idea that science must prove the truth is *your* mistaken interpretation on how you 'believe' science works, not mine.

And, if you affirm something (thus mean, you assert an hypothesis) then you *should* provide the evidence that at least is not false. That is science.

Then, the key terms here are falsify and falsifiability. That is how science really work.

If you don't believe me, look for information about the scientific method, like:

"Note that this method can never absolutely verify (prove the truth of) 2. It can only falsify 2.[7] (This is what Einstein meant when he said "No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right; a single experiment can prove me wrong."[8])"
-- Wikipedia for Scientific method

Therefore, you are saying a FALSE statement but you are trying to bound this result to your own interpretation of what that falseness implies, like the idea that "evidence is not necessary..."

Sorry. That is a straw man and a non sequitur.

Gerard P Lally said...

[quote]Let suppose I say "YES" and lets follow analyze its consecuences.

If we accept that only things that science "has proven" are really real or true, that necessarily means that anything that science HAS NOT proven necessarily is unreal or false.

That has NO SENSE. A simply argument is: there are TONS of things that science has not discovered yet, and then they had never been proved by science. So, ALL of those things are simple unreal or false? Absolutely NO.

Therefore, your affirmation is FALSE.[/quote]

But I didn't say "things that science *has proven*.

Why do you insist on mutilating what I write? is it so that you can obfuscate the issue and pretend you came out on top.

This is the statement; read it once more. And don't EVER condescend to me by recommending links and references in an effort to educate me.

"Something is real or true only if it can be scientifically proven."

Is this statement true?

If you say it is, then prove it. Scientifically. With solid, physical evidence.

See?

Here's the hypothesis:

Something is real or true only if it *can* be proven.

No past tense here - no *has been* proven.

Can be. Get that?

Or should I refer you to an English grammar?

Now for the question:

Is this hypothesis true? In other words, is it true that something is true only if it can be proven, or is it false? If it's true, you need to prove it. If it's false, then guess what. We don't need to prove ANYTHING regarding God, because you agree that something does not have to be proven in order for it to be true.

I won't be adding anything more to this thread. Reflect on it for a day or two and perhaps pray about it. I wouldn't like to see you make a habit of embarrassing yourself for the rest of your miserable life.

Gerard P Lally said...

I would like to see the text of the study cited in this blog. I would also like to know who translated it from the original Italian. The link does not work; there is no file hosted where it's supposed to be.

Please repost the file and inform us who translated the study. Thank you.

Daniel said...

Gerard, as you stated clearly what your point is:

> "Something is real or true only if it can be scientifically proven." [...] In other words, is it true that something is true only if it can be proven, or is it false? If it's true, you need to prove it. If it's false, then guess what. We don't need to prove ANYTHING regarding God, because you agree that something does not have to be proven in order for it to be true.

Following your reasoning, we don't need to prove ANYTHING regarding God because something could be true without the need of a scientific test to prove it.

But science could deal only with subjects that could be falsifiable, (as I told you before), and God can't be "falsified" for scientific testing. Science simply can not prove that God exist or doesn't exist, if you are worried about that.

But the Miracle of Lanciano mentioned in the article do exist and it is physical matter, so it could be tested scientifically, and some hypothesis about that could be verify as 'not false' by science, even if God can't be verified.

BTW, the same reasons that makes impossible for science to prove Christian God facts are valid for any other god in this planet: It is impossible for science prove the existence of any god of all other religions.

Therefore under your reasoning, ALL gods in this planet really exist and they do not need any scientific evidence.

I hope you are a very tolerant person, because you can't blame anybody in this planet for following their true real god, but not yours.

> I wouldn't like to see you make a habit of embarrassing yourself for the rest of your miserable life.

Insulting me, even if I really am a miserable person (and I am not, by the way) doesn't makes your believes and points more valid.

Clearly, we do not agree, and we think different things, but that doesn't means I could say you are a miserable person. Is that what Christianity teaches you? I hope it doesn't.

Daniel Volpato said...

Hi. The link of Linoli's paper is not working. Could you publish it again?

Thanks,
Daniel

Daniel Volpato said...

Hi. The link of Linoli's paper is not working. Could you publish it again?

Thanks,
Daniel

Matthew said...

Good research. I can see you really did your homework. I was just wondering if you could place a full translation of the paper on your blog. When I ran it through google translate, it didn't turn out too well.