The May 2017 NTCOF service focused on the subject of miracles. We began by observing that May 7th was the day that the Nazis signed the surrender papers that ended WWII in Europe, leading to May 8th being the traditional Victory in Europe Day. But who signed those papers since Hitler had killed himself already? Answer: Nazi Grand Admiral, Alfred Jodl, who signed the surrender documents, authorized by Karl Dönitz, whom Hitler had designated as President of Germany. Never heard of Karl Dönitz? Here's how it happened: (you know the Nazis filmed everything that happened!)
May 7th also happens to be the birthday of 18th Century Scottish philosopher David Hume who famously pointed out that the regularities of nature are all against "miracles." Therefore, said Hume, and it was better to believe any number of things than that all of the past and present observations of natural events were wrong.
Our Moment of Science looked at how one sort of miracle, statues that "drink" and "sweat" and "weep" do so by means of capillary action and how capillary action works because of the polarity and, as a consequence, the cohesion and adhesion of water molecules. We watched this video:
Pretty scary that these laws against "blasphemy" operate in so many countries including, as we see, in Indonesia recently! There, non-Muslim Gov. Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama was sent to jail for the "crime" of telling voters that they were being deceived by those who claimed that the Quran prohibited Muslims from voting for a non-Muslim leader.
Then we went into the ideas of Hume and others, such as the greatest Christian apologist of the 20th Century, C.S. Lewis. These two people considered the subject of miracles but from opposite points of view. We compared the idea of supernaturalism - held by Lewis - with naturalism, the approach that looks to things themselves to explain their behavior instead of to outside forces - deities and ghosts - that manipulate events. Along the way, we considered that "weird things" are actually likely to happen. "Littleton's Law," for example, holds that things that occur with a frequency of only one in a million will be experienced by each of us as often as once a month.
Postings about each monthly service includes topics discussed and an open forum to further discuss those topics.
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