Daily Archives: February 15, 2009

A Very Grimm Fairytale, Indeed: The Anti-Semitic Blood Libel Folk Story of Anderl von Rinn (also Known as “Andreas Oxner”) Appeared in One of the Earliest Editions of the Grimm Brothers’ “Fairytales” (Early 19th Century)

The first Christian “blood libel” story directed toward Jews is in the Gospel of Matthew (where the gospel writer claims that the Jewish crowd at Jesus’ trial, crying for his crucifixion, collectively called out to Pontius Pilate: “His blood be upon us and upon our children!”). Subsequent blood … Continue reading

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Question of the Day: What is the Origin of the Yellow “Star of David” That the Nazis Required Jews to Wear at the Time of the Holocaust?

Answer: The yellow patch, or yellow “star of David”, set upon the clothing as a marker of Jewish identity, has its origins, not in 20th century anti-Semitism, but in 13th century Christian anti-Semitism. In 1215 Pope Innocent III decreed that … Continue reading

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In Our Milky Way Galaxy Alone: 100 Billion Earth-Like Planets and Perhaps Thousands of Civilizations

So the BBC reports today. Puts life in perspective, doesn’t it? Money quote: Dr Boss has estimated that each Sun-like star has on average one “Earth-like” planet. This simple calculation means there would be huge numbers capable of supporting life. … Continue reading

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Evolution v. Creation: Asa Gray, in the “Atlantic Monthly” for June, 1860, Reviewed Darwin’s “Origin of Species” and Clearly Explained Why Science Can Never Be Satisfied with a Supernatural Explanation of Origins

Below is one of the clearest “apologies” for the separation of science from the supernatural that I have ever encountered—and it was written a hundred and fifty years ago. In June of 1860, Asa Gray, in The Atlantic, reviewed favorably … Continue reading

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