Which single word best sums up the pseudoscientific claims of Shroudologists?
I’ve thought quite long and hard about that question. Today, inspiration finally struck, though it required a resort to a folksy style of English that is arguably more Stateside than the language of Shakespeare. Here it is: hokum.
The Free Dictionary: ho·kum n.
1. Something apparently impressive or legitimate but actually untrue or insincere; nonsense.
2. A stock technique for eliciting a desired response from an audience.
Examples of hokum? We are being blitzed as I speak with hokum from The Other Site.
I could provide a list of Shroudologists – living and dead – who have contributed to the rich vein of Shroudie hokum. Some is almost indistinguishable from science – at least to the casual observer. But your blogger is no casual observer. He is a retired science bod, still possessed thankfully of sensitive antennae, capable of detecting hokum at 100 metres.
“Shroudology is 99% hokum”. Discuss.
PS: See the comments from French Canadian Yannick C. that have appeared on the posting to which I provided a link.
His tomb scenario gets ever more complicated by the day. It’s now a proverbial dog’s dinner, what with blood first clotting and drying, and then mysteriously re-moistening enough to give a near-perfect facsimile by transfer, and then the tightly bound Shroud becoming mysteriously loosened so as to receive a distortion-free image. You couldn’t make it up. Well, you could, but only if you are a 007 Shroudologist with a licence to kill (kill scientific debate, that is, by invoking a never ending stream of new or additional qualifying assumptions all crying out for a deft slice or two from Occam’s razor).
Thank goodness Hugh is mixing it there, attempting to preserve a shred of sanity … You’re a better man than I am, Gunga Din…
Addendum: Thursday 13 Dec
Adrie has made a number of points in the comments attached to this posting. One of them concerns an alleged ‘serum halo’ on the bloodstain on the wrist. Here are three images that may assist in resolving the issue.
See comments for my interpretation.