Friday 30th of July 2021

the universe is surprising...

veil nebula

Understanding the universe is an adventure in exploration and observations, not in mythical assumptions. 


Using new techniques, scientists have released a breathtaking updated image of the Veil Nebula, the beautiful remains of a supernova which took place 10,000 years ago.
The supernova remnant is called the Cygnus Loop and is the result of the death of a star 20 times the mass of the Sun, which exploded some 2,100 light-years away. The hollowed-out remains of the star stretch out over 110 light-years, having been shaped by a phenomenally powerful stellar wind which blew past prior to the star going supernova. 
The wind dispersed initial gas emissions from the star before the resulting explosion lit them up like neon veins stretching out along cavity walls of a gigantic filament of ‘star stuff’.

https://www.rt.com/news/519930-updated-hubble-image-veil-nebula/

This is amazing stuff… way beyond our little bourgeois illusions of god. The world was not created in six days, nor did the universe took a day of rest on the seventh. Yes, some people could assume that the explosion of the supernova was seen by the three kings as their guiding star on their way towards little Jesus in his manger for sheep. Nupe. Nothing to do with it. Meanwhile the Easter spirit is flowing like whisky in the veins of an old scot and some people are disappointed  They expect better from he illusions of their beliefs...

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Catholics for Renewal finds this Instrumentum Laboris a major disappointment. It takes us nowhere in particular, and certainly not towards an agenda that will achieve genuine reform and renewal in our Church. It is not the impetus needed to get the Church in Australia ‘back on mission.’

The Instrumentum Laboris (IL) or Working Document is the latest product of the Preparatory Stage for the 5th Plenary Council of the Catholic Church in Australia, convened to address the huge existential crisis facing the Church in this nation. The final document will be the Agenda. After that has been approved by the Holy See, the Council will be officially convoked with the 1st General Assembly scheduled for 3-10 October 2021.

The IL’s stated purpose is twofold: to provide an account of what emerged from the national consultations, and to invite the whole Church, especially the Plenary delegates into a deeper discernment and listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit (n. 3).


https://johnmenadue.com/instrumentum-laboris-a-major-disappointment/


The Catholic Church has gone ‘off mission’. The scandal and tragedies of clerical child sexual abuse and the cover-up by bishops is symptomatic of a deeply ailing church.


Getting Back on Mission focuses on Jesus’ mission for the Church; it exposes dysfunctional governance involving a grave lack of accountability and transparency, and the exclusion of the People of God – particularly women.


This is a contribution to the Australian Plenary Council 2020/21. Its purpose is twofold: to get the Church back ‘on mission’; and to show how that can be achieved ‘together’.


The reforms proposed are based on sound evidence and analysis. For Catholics wanting genuine renewal of their Church, this roadmap for change is a must-read and an essential companion book for the Plenary Council.


Getting Back on Mission is forward-looking and founded on trust in the Spirit – it is about hope.


https://garrattpublishing.com.au/product/9781925009651/


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The joys and the hopes, the griefs and the anxieties of the people of this age, especially those who are poor or in any way afflicted, these are the joys and hopes, the griefs and anxieties, of the followers of Christ. Indeed, nothing genuinely human fails to raise an echo in their hearts1 .  

These opening words from the Second Vatican Council’s Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World (Gaudium et Spes) capture well the reality behind the many submissions, from individuals and from groups, which resulted from the Listening and Dialogue phase of the Plenary Council. There were 17,457 submissions received, all in response to the guiding question of the Plenary Council: What do you think God is asking of us in Australia at this time?

https://plenarycouncil.catholic.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/IL-document-single-pages.pdf
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Gus: I have news for you… GOD DOES NOT EXIST. THE WHOLE RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE IS A FRAUD. Get over it. Stop twisting your mind about the minutiae of beliefs... Yes, Catholics for Renewal finds Instrumentum Laboris a major disappointment. And why?  Well it is another device which the Church system of belief invents to reaffirm its delusions. You had the Saint Thomas Aquinas and many other reinforcements, including Vatican II, of theological transcendence, which is an illusion of self-importance that has been loosing traction because it does not make any sense.

Yes the idea of god does not make an ounce of sense, especially when captured around an old resurrection story that has been kept like an essential element to the dogma. That god sends his son 2021 years ago or so, to die on a cross and revive three days later to redeem your sin of being born as a homo sapiens instead of an angel, is as valid as chasing chocolate eggs from the Easter rabbit.
It’s a MYTH... A MYTH. The myth is as valid as the Roman gods controlling nature and us to annoy the shit out of us. We are gullible. Believing in snake oils is our downfall. Despite their very sophisticated systems of rituals and indoctrinations, religions are actually worse than snake oil.At least you can buy and use snake oil now, while with religions you need to die to cash in on the full redemption experience. Nupe. When you die, that’s it: finito. Is this hard to understand? Yes I know, you spend all your life, busily preparing for the after-life and kaboom: nothing. Yes, this is called existentialism. Life has no purpose but that you which to choose within the limit of your natural constructs and those social interactions that prevent you to become a little shit. 

Sorry to tell this to you bluntly. We have been tackling this subject for yonks on this site. It is necessary to understand that religions — organised religions especially — are designed to CONTROL people. It’s a bit like a device against freedom and its derivative, angst. 

As humans, homo sapiens, with time on our hands to “think”, we invent illusions to fill gaps in what we don’t understand. As imperfect products of evolution, we had to fend for ourselves against odds and our brain developed beyond our natural needs for survival. we invented rituals, dances, songs, languages, entertainment, work as individuals and as a team, to improve our situation. Yet we are still animals. Clever inventive and in need of an explanation for our existence. We needed to know that lightning came from Jupiter’s anger, then we realise that god sent us some plagues because we had sin. Eventually we realised that lightning and plagues are NATURAL phenomenons. 

The stuff of lighting is what we use to power our smartphones. Plagues and pandemics can be controlled if we understand where they coming from and what viruses and microbes are doing to our NATURAL constructs, not punishment from god. It’s DNA versus DNA. It’s proteins versus proteins. We need to eat to survive. 

We have invented systems of relationship to avoid killing each others, but the best of priests can become taken in by the fake narratives by ill-thinking beyond their biblical beliefs. Take for example the war on Saddam. The whole thing was a set-up — a crock, a sting, a devious motivation, a crookery of huge political conspiratorial spread. We, the enlightened people who have studied a bit of the leadership trickery of empires and countries, knew the Saddam-has-weapons-of-mass-destruction was a “made-up” porkie. It’s easy to see from a “different point of view” than from that of the English hegemony that was selling its people and to the rest of the world this crap. Why would a decent priest for peace and imbued with all the “ten commandments”, including "that shall not kill” fall for the political trap, possibly because in the old testament “god instructed His (god is a male) “Chosen People" to go and fight the pagans for whatever reason?

This is what happened to one of the most lauded cleric of the Yankee Catholic, Father Richard John Neuhaus. He believed in the false political argument and formulated a stupid “moral judgement":

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ZENITOn whether there is a just cause for an attack against Iraq, many observers question if there is enough evidence of a direct connection between Baghdad and the September 11 attacks. Others doubt that there is clear evidence of an imminent attack of a grave nature by Iraq against other countries. What do you think?


Richard John Neuhaus: First it must be said that—although it appears that military action against Iraq may be only a matter of days or weeks away—faithful Catholics are joined with the Holy Father John Paul II in fervent prayer that war may yet be avoided. As he has said, war represents a defeat of the right ordering of peace—what St. Augustine called “tranquillitas ordinis.” In history nothing is inevitable, and with God all things are possible.


St. Thomas Aquinas and other teachers of the just-war tradition make it clear that war may sometimes be a moral duty in order to repel aggression, overturn injustice, and protect the innocent. The just cause in this case is the disarmament of Iraq, a cause consistently affirmed by the Holy Father and reinforced by 17 resolutions of the Security Council.


Whether that cause can be vindicated without resort to military force, and whether it would be wiser to wait and see what Iraq might do over a period of months or years, are matters of prudential judgment beyond the competence of religious authority.


In just-war doctrine, the Church sets forth the principles which it is the responsibility of government leaders to apply to specific cases (see Catechism of the Catholic Church 2309). Saddam Hussein has for eleven years successfully defied international authority. He has used and, it appears, presently possesses and is set upon further developing weapons of mass destruction, and he has publicly stated his support for the September 11 attack and other terrorist actions.


In the judgment of the United States and many other countries, he poses a grave and imminent threat to America, world peace and the lives of innumerable innocents. If the judgment is correct, the use of military force to remove that threat, in the absence of plausible alternatives, is both justified and necessary. Heads of government who are convinced of the correctness of that judgment would be criminally negligent and in violation of their solemn oath to protect their people if they did not act to remove such a threat.


As a theologian and moralist, I have no special competence to assess the threat posed by Iraq. On the basis of available evidence and my considered confidence in those responsible for making the pertinent decisions, I am inclined to believe and I earnestly pray that they will do the right thing.


Strong objections have been raised to the concept of preventive or preemptive uses of military force to overthrow threatening regimes or to deal with the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Is the use of pre-emptive force justified according to just war principles?


Frequent reference to preventive or preemptive use of military force, and even to “wars of choice,” have only confused the present discussion. War, if it is just, is not an option chosen but a duty imposed. In the present circumstance, military action against Iraq by a coalition of the willing is in response to Iraq’s aggression; first against Kuwait in 1991, then in defiance of the terms of surrender demanding its disarmament, then in support of, if not direct participation in, acts of terrorism. This is joined to its brutal aggression against its own citizens, and its possession of weapons of mass destruction which it can use or permit others to use for further aggression.


To wait until the worst happens is to wait too long, and leaders guilty of such negligence would rightly be held morally accountable. In the Catholic tradition there is, in fact, a considerable literature relevant to these questions. Augustine, Aquinas, Francisco de Vitoria, and Francisco Suarez, for example, all wrote on prudential action in the face of aggressive threats. The absence of reference to such recognized authorities in the current discussion among Catholics is striking.


Many voices within and outside the Church ask that the United States not go ahead with an attack [in Iraq] without specific UN authorization. Is UN approval just a prudential course of action, which could in the last resort be bypassed? Or is it obligatory, given the provisions of the UN charter and the growing importance of international institutions like the UN?


Resolution 1441 of the Security Council, unanimously approved last November, demands that Iraq immediately disarm or face the consequences. Nobody claims that Iraq has complied, and proposals for “extended timelines” and the like appear to invite no more than a repeat of the defiance of the past eleven years.


No further UN “authorization” is required. The larger and more interesting question is posed by the frequently heard assertion that the United Nations is the locus of legitimate authority in international affairs. That is asserted but it has not been argued, certainly not in terms of Catholic doctrine regarding legitimate authority. In view of the United Nations’ frequent hostility to the Church on family policy, population, the sacredness of human life, and related matters, some Catholic leaders may come to regret their exaggerated and, I believe, ill-considered statements about the moral authority of the United Nations.


Moreover, if the United Nations is not prepared to support the enforcement of its own resolutions—resolutions which it cannot itself enforce—it is likely to go the way of the old League of Nations. The coalition led by the United States intends to act in support of the United Nations. If a minority on the Security Council rejects that support, the credibility and future usefulness of the United Nations will be gravely undermined.

We are led, by events and common sense, to one conclusion: The survival of liberty in our land increasingly depends on the success of liberty in other lands. The best hope for peace in our world is the expansion of freedom in all the world.


America’s vital interests and our deepest beliefs are now one. From the day of our Founding, we have proclaimed that every man and woman on this earth has rights, and dignity, and matchless value, because they bear the image of the Maker of Heaven and earth. Across the generations we have proclaimed the imperative of self-government, because no one is fit to be a master, and no one deserves to be a slave. Advancing these ideals is the mission that created our Nation. It is the honorable achievement of our fathers. Now it is the urgent requirement of our nation’s security, and the calling of our time.


So it is the policy of the United States to seek and support the growth of democratic movements and institutions in every nation and culture, with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world.

Read more:
https://www.firstthings.com/article/2005/10/iraq-and-the-moral-judgement

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This erroneous view, Amercanus Bullshitus, of Father Richard John Neuhaus was highlighted by another Catholic, Ross Douthat, who explained:

..Those dilemmas follow from the prior quarter-century of Christian argumentation about the church and the culture, when the most influential religious intellectuals were neoconservatives of various descriptions (you can take Richard John Neuhaus as a paradigmatic case) who felt that Christian thinkers and activists in the 1960s and 1970s had taken a wrong turn: In trying to make Christianity relevant to secular liberalism or to the revolutionary left, they had allowed the faith to be swallowed by politics, its doctrines effaced and its supernaturalism tamed. 


But Douthat himself, is retrograde in his Christianity:

These are reasonable questions, and for the purposes of putting the “re” in revival and rebirth, I’m extremely in favor of the post-liberal interest in looking further backward — whether to 19th century popes or medieval French monarchs.

So Ross is revisiting the old medieval French monarchs who were using religion as a weapon. The popes did the same for a while. Religion in those days was designed to keep people ignorant and in fear by subterfuges, visions of hell and illiteracy. 

And this is the problem. Religion united with political force is “evil” (I don’t believe in evil) and I trust that the good Louis IX was deluded, unless he was secretly smarter than most to govern a pack of peasants and warriors by being "divinely inspired”. This is why the French eventually officially broke the tie by the separation of state and church by 1900. Government is secular and believe what crap you will. End of story.

Whatever format of religious belief you have is wrong. God does not exist. This is the crux: the decadence of religion is actually decay. Yes I know there are still people peddling the idea with genuine beliefs, but most likely they have not analysed what they believe with an open mind that would soon tell them that what they believe is delusional. The Christian intellectuals cannot resurrect the idea of god in a secular world. The message of the bible is archaic, wrong, often stupid and senseless. You could add many similar epithets and even say once more that the whole concoction was created to CONTROL people. Most people in the Western world have awoken to the trick of religion, but not in Muslim countries where it is dangerous to do so, as disputing the religious fare is blasphemy/apostasy and is punishable with various temporal pains, from imprisonment to death… Dreadful. 

The Catholic Church was like that till the Inquisition was abolished, though people are threatened with hell nonetheless for not believing. Please! This human invention of god has passed its used-by-date and any attempts to promote it and rehash it or relabel it, only poison your brain with hogwash, dangerous substance like mouldy bread — or smells foul like milk gone bad. 

Stop it.

GL.

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a black space in time...

While working on his doctorate in theoretical physics in the early 1970s, Saul Teukolsky solved a problem that seemed purely hypothetical. Imagine a black hole, the ghostly knot of gravity that forms when, say, a massive star burns out and collapses to an infinitesimal point. Suppose you perturb it, as you might strike a bell. How does the black hole respond?

 

Teukolsky, then a graduate student at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), attacked the problem with pen- cil, paper, and Albert Einstein’s theory of gravity, general relativity. Like a bell, the black hole would oscillate at one main fre- quency and multiple overtones, he found. The oscillations would quickly fade as the black hole radiated gravitational waves— ripples in the fabric of space itself. It was a sweet problem, says Teukolsky, now at Cornell University. And it was completely abstract—until 5 years ago.

 

In February 2016, experimenters with the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Ob- servatory (LIGO), a pair of huge instruments in Louisiana and Washington, reported the first observation of fleeting gravitational ripples, which had emanated from two black holes, each about 30 times as massive as the Sun, spiraling into each other 1.3 billion light-years away. LIGO even sensed the “ring down”: the shudder of the bigger black hole produced by the merger. Teukolsky’s old the- sis was suddenly cutting-edge physics.

 

“The thought that anything I did would ever have implications for anything measur- able in my lifetime was so far-fetched that the last 5 years have seemed like living in a dream world,” Teukolsky says. “I have to pinch myself, it doesn’t feel real.”

 

Fantastical though it may seem, scientists can now study black holes as real objects. Gravitational wave detectors have spotted four dozen black hole mergers since LIGO’s breakthrough detection. In April 2019, an international collaboration called the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) produced the first image of a black hole. By training radio telescopes around the globe on the super- massive black hole in the heart of the nearby galaxy Messier 87 (M87), EHT im- aged a fiery ring of hot gas surrounding the black hole’s inky “shadow.” Meanwhile, as- tronomers are tracking stars that zip close to the black hole in the center of our own Galaxy, following paths that may hold clues to the nature of the black hole itself.


 

The observations are already challenging astrophysicists’ assumptions about how black holes form and influence their surroundings. The smaller black holes de- tected by LIGO and, now, the European gravitational wave detector Virgo in Italy have proved heavier and more varied than expected, straining astrophysicists’ under- standing of the massive stars from which they presumably form. And the environ- ment around the supermassive black hole in our Galaxy appears surprisingly fertile, teeming with young stars not expected to form in such a maelstrom. But some sci- entists feel the pull of a more fundamental question: Are they really seeing the black holes predicted by Einstein’s theory?


Some theorists say the answer is most likely a ho-hum yes. “I don’t think we’re going to learn anything more about gen- eral relativity or the theory of black holes from any of this,” says Robert Wald, a gravi- tational theorist at the University of Chi- cago. Others aren’t so sure. “Are black holes strictly the same as you would expect with general relativity or are they different?” asks Clifford Will, a gravitational theorist at the University of Florida. “That’s going to be a major thrust of future observations.” Any anomalies would require a rethink of Einstein’s theory, which physicists suspect is not the final word on gravity, as it doesn’t jibe with the other cornerstone of modern physics, quantum mechanics.

 

Using multiple techniques, researchers are already gaining different, complementary views of these strange objects, says Andrea Ghez, an astrophysicist at the University of California, Los Angeles, who shared the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physics for inferring the exis- tence of the supermassive black hole in the heart of our Galaxy. “We’re still a long way from putting a complete picture together,” she says, “but we’re certainly getting more of the puzzle pieces in place.”

 

CONSISTING OF PURE gravitational energy, a black hole is a ball of contradictions. It contains no matter, but, like a bowling ball, possesses mass and can spin. It has no surface, but has a size. It behaves like an im- posing, weighty object, but is really just a peculiar region of space.

 

Or so says general relativity, which Einstein published in 1915. Two centuries earlier, Isaac Newton had posited that grav- ity is a force that somehow reaches through space to attract massive objects to one an- other. Einstein went deeper and argued that gravity arises because massive things such as stars and planets warp space and time— more accurately, spacetime—causing the trajectories of freely falling objects to curve into, say, the parabolic arc of a thrown ball.

 

Early predictions of general relativity dif- fered only slightly from those of Newton’s theory. Whereas Newton predicted that a planet should orbit its star in an ellipse, gen- eral relativity predicts that the orientation of the ellipse should advance slightly, or pre- cess, with each orbit. In the first triumph of the theory, Einstein showed it accounted for the previously unexplained precession of the orbit of the planet Mercury. Only years later did physicists realize the theory also implied something far more radical.

 

In 1939, theorist J. Robert Oppenheimer and colleagues calculated that when a suf- ficiently massive star burned out, no known force could stop its core from collapsing to an infinitesimal point, leaving behind its gravitational field as a permanent pit in spacetime. Within a certain distance of the point, gravity would be so strong that not even light could escape. Anything closer would be cut off from the rest of the universe, David Finkelstein, a theorist at Caltech, argued in 1958. This “event hori- zon” isn’t a physical surface. An astronaut falling past it would notice nothing special. Nevertheless, reasoned Finkelstein, who died just days before LIGO’s announcement in 2016, the horizon would act like a one-way membrane, letting things fall in, but preventing anything from getting out.

 

According to general relativity, these objects—eventually named black holes by famed theorist John Archibald Wheeler— should also exhibit a shocking sameness. In 1963, Roy Kerr, a mathematician from New Zealand, worked out how a spinning black hole of a given mass would warp and twist spacetime. Others soon proved that, in general relativity, mass and spin are the only characteristics a black hole can have, implying that Kerr’s mathematical formula, known as the Kerr metric, describes every black hole there is. Wheeler dubbed the result the no-hair theorem to emphasize that two black holes of the same mass and spin are as indistinguishable as bald pates. Wheeler himself was bald, Teukolsky notes, “so maybe it was bald pride.”


— SCIENTISTS HOPE TO ANSWER three specific questions: Do the observed black holes really have event horizons? Are they as featureless as the no-hair theorem says? And do they distort spacetime exactly as the Kerr metric predicts?

 

Read more:

 

Science  08 Jan 2021:

Vol. 371, Issue 6525, pp. 116-119

 

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