Shape of Blood Stains
from
http://debate.atheist.net/showthread.php?t=4283&page=7

(3/16/11)

Abstracts (so far)


Jabba, 3/15/11: I have claimed that
1) 'blood' stains on the Shroud show characteristic shapes of venous and arterial blood flows, and in the right places -- and that
2) 14th century artists probably wouldn't know the difference between the two -- and, if they did, they wouldn't know where to place them.
- My opponents have claimed that some artists of the 14th century would know the difference and where to place them -- but so far, they have not supplied any examples of such. Their other suspicion is that recognizing these differences is very subjective, and the researchers are seeing what they want to see. So far, my evidence to the contrary is weak
.
- Consequently, the basic question right now is how clear are the differences. I'm tracking that down.

 

 

Debate

III, 65 in part, Jabba:
Steen,
- I urge to explain my credulity in thinking what I did [that dried venous blood was of a different color than dried arterial blood, even after 2000 years] -- but probably, that wouldn't be very useful, so I will abstain...
...
- In other words, this apparent mistake is a point against my argument, but there are lots of other points out there that still need to be sorted…
- And in this particular case, I still claim that whatever the stains are made of, they still effectively represent the difference between venous blood clots and arterial blood clots (by their shapes) -- and these differing characteristics appear exactly where they should. Which should be essentially impossible for even a very clever 14th century artist to represent.
- I do think that I have introduced significant new supportive evidence for the stains being blood -- after you first allowed that they probably were blood -- but I will spare you my alleged list for now, and proceed with the hypothetical issue of "so what"?
- But one baby step at a time.

III, 66, Steen:
- Why?
- Why do you think that knowledge of how blood flows has not been wide-spread in former times? If you look at old paintings, they do in fact differentiate in the blood flows of the different wounds.

III, 67 in part, Jabba:
- Interesting. Do you have an example on the Internet?...

III, 68, Steen:
- Of a painting of the crucifixion? I am sure there are tons of them!

III, 69, Jabba:
- Superficially, at least, that answer does not support your case.
- Can you come up with just one example to support your claim?***

 

III, 67 in part again, Jabba:
- Interesting. Do you have an example on the Internet?...

III, 68 again, Steen:
- Of a painting of the crucifixion? I am sure there are tons of them!

III, 99, Jabba:
- No. A painting (of the crucifixion) that shows a difference between venous and arterial blood stains.
- If there are not any of those, and if there are more than one or two instances on the Shroud that seem to show the difference, you've got a hard case to hoe.

III, 100, Flower:
- But does the shroud show that? Or is it just another case of seeing what they want to see?
The picture is vague at best (to say it in a nice way, rude people could use something like "bloody crappy"), and yet, they are able to elude fantastic details. Not from direct observations, but from old photos!
And we're talking about photos that have been subjected to some degree of adjustment, not the raw data.
- Seeing things beyond the limit of detection is a hallmark of pseudo-science!
- Remember the one who was able to identify the coins placed on the eyelids? And read the inscriptions on them? And reading the text on the death certificate that had allegedly been pinned to the shroud?
The shroudists are so tangled up in the urge to prove it, that they will see and accept anything to support their predetermined conclusion (another hallmark of pseudo-science).
- .......... and once people have wasted a huge amount of work flogging said dead horse, it is simply too painful to admit that it is dead. They prefer to insist that they can see movement (and disregard that the only movement is caused by maggots).
- Until the RCC can deliver an objective C-14 test that puts the dating right, any other discussion is worthless.

III, 101, Jabba
Flower,
- That might be the most basic question -- or, two questions. How biased and credulous are the researchers, and how extensive, professional and conclusive are their tests?
- In my opinion, the tests of the many researchers claiming authenticity are much more extensive, professional and conclusive than are the tests of the few researchers claiming forgery. And in fact, in my opinion, the many researchers claiming authenticity are less biased and credulous than are the few claiming forgery...
- I've tried to present that case, somewhat, in the past, and should probably make that my next focus. For now, however, I need to track down the specific claims about venous vs arterial stains on the Shroud.

 

III, 67 in part, Jabba:
- But again, from what I read, Science didn't discover the difference between the two kinds of blood till the end of the 16th century. Are you just suggesting that they knew about the different flow -- and consequently, the shape of the respective scabs -- much earlier, but didn't know the reason for the difference?
- That does sound reasonable, but would even a clever artist know where to effect the differences, or bother to show them?

III, 68 in part, Steen:
...
- I think it belongs to the art of making the image realistic. I am not saying that this ever happened, but that I find it very likely that it happened, particularly on painted crucifixes, because they are often more realistically painted than paintings. I myself have no idea what these blood clots should look like, so I cannot point to any examples.
- The question is really if an artist painted blood clots of different shapes, and if they would be accepted as depicting different kinds of blood flows. The artist may never have bothered to puts the blood stains in the right anatomical places corresponding to actual veins or arteries. I could imagine that the same goes for the shroud: the believers just think it is great that they think they can see a difference in the blood stains, and claim that this must be because of blood from veins or arteries.***

III, 72, Jabba:
- Just as a preface, I'm not quite sure what you're saying in regard to "painted crucifixes" [68] being more realistic than paintings. I think you're saying that paintings of the crucifixion of Jesus were often especially realistic -- more realistic than were other paintings.
- Going with that understanding...
- I thought that I had spelled out what clots should look like more often than I actually did, but back in #'s 26 and 41, I did offer quotes describing the differing shapes.
- And, back in #31, you seem to know, at least roughly, what to look for in terms of shape.
- And then, if you actually "have no idea what these clots should look like," your claim that these differences show up in early paintings seems, at best, a poorly educated guess...
- Maybe they do, but in my meager research, I haven't seen any difference -- and, I don't have much incentive to scrutinize Google for examples.

III, 77, Steen:
- I do not think that I ever said that paintings of the crucifixion were more realistic than other paintings: If I did say this, I was wrong! What I meant to say is that there are lots of very realistic paintings, and I have added that painted crucifixes are probably even more realistic. Just to give an example, you can take a look at these pictures:


- I am not claiming that these are venous, or arterial flows, but I am asking if the shroud scientists would have been just as amazed at the remarkably detailed blood flows in this picture as they are of the far less detailed blood flows on the shroud (probably the clear details on a picture like this speaks against the artist; the shroud is blurred, contact with the body does not seem to have been close, and consequently it is easier to conjecture that the stains are real)
- You did (and I notice that your shroud scientist in #26 actually mentions colour as a distinguishing feature in a hint that this can be seen on the shroud also ). On the lower picture I found, you can see some venous blood collecting under the thorns, while the arterial flow from other puncture wounds have caused the blood to run down his forehead - if you want to see it!
- (The top picture, though a carving, leaves a lot to be desired in realism, particularly glaring is the unrealistic blood flow from the eyes).
- As indeed it is!
- When I was a child I actually studied the blood stains on crucifixion pictures. this was not because of an interest in venous or arterial flows (that I had never heard of), but because I was intensely compassionate about the sufferings of Christ, and imagined what it felt like to wear the crown of thorns. I distinctly remember how I felt that one particular picture that I had on my wall (donated by loving parents) had not very realistic blood stains compared to another picture I had seen. But of course, it is impossible to trace the pictures today, and I no longer keep pictures of torture victims on my walls.

III, 78, Jabba:
- What you said in post #68 was, "I think it belongs to the art of making the image realistic. I am not saying that this ever happened, but that I find it very likely that it happened, particularly on painted crucifixes, because they are often more realistically painted than paintings." (My emphasis)
- These paintings do look very realistic in a sense, but they are just what viewers would expect to see. The alleged stains on the Shroud are, to a significant extent, not what viewers would expect to see, and do not look like the stains on those two paintings, but do, apparently, look like what pathologists would expect to see.
*

III, 80, Steen:
I never got the impression that the pathologists found something that viewers would not have expected to see.
(Link)

III, 82, Jabba:
- In http://www.shroud.com/zugibe2.htm, Zugibe notes several appropriate characteristics of the apparent blood flow on the Shroud that viewers wouldn't understand.
Imprints depicting the various wounds that had been inflicted on the Man of the Shroud include numerous dumbbell-shaped scourge marks over the trunk, an exact pattern of rivulets of blood on the left arm, a single tortuous flow of blood on the forehead, a precise bifurcation pattern on the back of the hand and a small clump of blood on the heel. Studies of these patterns with ultraviolet light are even more vivid in terms of preciseness; the scourge marks show well defined borders and fine scratch-like markings appear to be mingled in-between.
- About half a page down, Zugibe explains the bifurcation pattern on the back of the hand.
- A little further down, Zugibe explains why the scourge stains would show up at all (A thoughtful layman would expect those clots to be totally dry by the time the Shroud was placed on the body, and basically leave no stain at all.) and why the preciseness of the stains makes sense. (The thoughtful layman would expect blood stains to be smudges rather than precisely shaped stains.).
- Then, there's the serum clot retraction rings that show up under microscopic scrutiny that the thoughtful layman wouldn't even see; and, what layman would expect the epsilon shaped blood flow on the forehead?
- This is sort of sparse, so let me know if you need more. I feel sure I can provide it, but it will take me awhile, and I'm sort of rushed right now...

III, 85, Steen:
- When I read this article, it strikes me that Zugibe is trying explain a pattern that lay people would have expected, but which forensic pathologists can only understand if the body has been washed. In other words, lay people - and presumably, the forger - would have thought nice clear imprints were fine, but the pathologist knows that this is not the case.
- The bifurcation pattern is the only pattern that sounds just a little bit unusual to me.
- Why do you think that?
- Would these retraction rings not show up if the forger had used real blood? And Zugibe does not mention the blood flow on the forehead other than in the introduction.

III, 86, Jabba:
- I'll take the "easier" ones first.
- I read it somewhere and didn't really think about it that much. But roughly, I wouldn't expect old scabs (from scourging), which might have precise shapes, to show up on the Shroud -- I'd expect any stains to be caused by liquid blood, and consequently be pretty indistinct.
- But then, I didn't add the washing part to my expectations, and the good artist we're considering might well have considered that probability -- and possibly even, the correct results of that probability...
- But then again, even this highly intelligent and accomplished artist would probably think, like Lavoie's group, that there wouldn't be time to wash Jesus before Shabbat...
- For the time being, I'll leave it at that, and just say that this is another indication that if an artist actually painted the Shroud, he had to be damned smart,and "picky." Which, I would say is another strike against this being a painting (though admittedly, in this game, "striking out" takes a lot more than three strikes).
- I'll be back

III, 90, Jabba:
- I'm going to try a new tact.
- I see your point...
- From my point of view, it would be helpful to know how many "appropriate" examples that pathologists, and other scientists, think they have found. If it's just one or two, your interpretation makes more sense than if there are several. I need to do some more research...
- I'm pretty sure that I've read that where a distinction can be made, the characteristics are appropriate -- but then, if I'm right, it hardly matters, as I can't remember where I read this anyway... It doesn't pay to get old.
- And then, back in #88, I said :
- One point here is that I have had to assume previously, on numerous occasions, that our suspected painter would have had to be pretty damned sharp. I've assumed also that you have assumed that also. Should I have not assumed that? (It seems that I can't help being cutesy.)
- Anyway, I think we have to assume that our projected artist is not a typical lay person, and would have carefully researched this issue.
- In other words, I need to go back and see how many appropriately shaped stains there were, and where a forgery would appear to require intelligent thought and research by the artist.
- I wouldn't ask that you go looking for such bits of evidence yourself, but if you can remember some, maybe you could remind me...
- I have another aspect to my new tact, but I'll save that till later.
- And then, I'll have to save your other issue for even later...
- Whew..
.

III, 91, Steen:
You also need to consider if an artist could have made these stains randomly, and if the pathologists see them as special evidence because they want to see them as such. Consider for instance, if there might be specially shaped stains that happen not to be where a pathologist expects them.

III, 92, Jabba:
- Here's the other part of my new tact.
- Keep in mind that part of my reason for being here is to work on my idea for effective written debate.
- At this point in time, in this particular debate, I'm trying to show that the existence of blood on the Shroud -- in the right places -- is just about proven. You suspect that there is blood on the Shroud -- and in the right places -- but you're not nearly as convinced as am I.
- As you know, I think that to best "get anywhere" in a debate, the opponents need to keep narrowing their foci.
- Unfortunately, as you also know, a debate "tree" naturally widens exponentially, and can become extremely tedious. So far, my answers to this problem are that slow and forward is still a lot better than fast and circular -- and also, that often, we should be able to see a distinct pattern, or smoking gun, early on and effectively avoid much of the tedium.
- What I'm thinking now is that we might be able to limit the tedium by being very careful as to what sub-sub-etc-issue we take. Up till now, I've used a sort of chronological order attached largely to your (plural) objections to my early claims. Hopefully, I'll be able to say that better as we go along -- but then, I seek now to change that orientation anyway...
- So for now, I'll leave the shape of the stains issue hanging (assuming that you still suspect that there is blood on the Shroud) and see if I should pick a better -- for my purposes -- sub-sub-issue to take.
- This points out another likely detail to my plan, which is that you should have the same right. In other words, we would act as attorneys in a trial, and each get our full chance to direct the conversation. In still other words, you and I would make this into two sub-threads -- I would control the direction of one, and you'd control the direction of the other. Though, I suspect for now, you just want to get this over with...
- Though, in truth, I'm sort of happy that you're the only one interested enough to keep talking to me --this way, I can better apply the details of my current plan, and better develop new details.
- For now, I plan on going back to my "brief" describing the different reasons for thinking that there is blood on the Shroud, and picking my favorite reason (sub-issue) for development -- i.e., the reason (sub-issue) that I think has the best chance for increasing your belief that there really is blood on the Shroud (and in the right places).
- Just as a thought, you had posed an interesting question awhile back (I can't seem to find it in a hurry) basically asking, "So what if there is blood on the Shroud?" If you wanted to direct a discussion on that, I'd be happy to participate.
- Though, you'd probably prefer to direct a discussion on something in which I would not be happy to participate. But then, maybe, I said I'd be happy participating in the "So what?" discussion as a trick to make you stay away from that topic... Did you ever see the movie, "Princess Bride"?

III, 93, Steen:
- I can follow you here. But I am afraid that I am not as interested in this discussion as you are. I do not see new evidence coming forward, so we are really just going through the same old evidence again and again. Could we not simply stop it, and pick up the debate when something really new turns up?

III, 94, Jabba:
- I was afraid you were going to say that -- and since you seem to be the last one paying attention anyway, I'm probably stuck. But, one last try.
- As I see it, the devil, and the resolutions too, really are in the details, and we are now addressing details that we had not addressed before...
- We have, indeed, talked about the 'blood' issue at some length, but only recently did we talk seriously about the differences between arterial and venous blood. And just above, I was forced to withdraw my claim about a difference in color between the two kinds -- I wasn't able to dig up enough evidence to support my claim, and the evidence I was able to dig up seemed only to weaken my case. In other words, we actually got somewhere by this attempt to scrutinize some details of the blood issue...
- Then we moved on to discuss the claims that 1) the Shroud portrayed -- in the right places -- the difference in shape between the two kinds of blood stains, and that 2) a 14th century artist would not know these differences, or at least, he would not know where each of the two different shapes appear.
- I think that we came up with three possible explanations: 1) There might be only a couple of occasions where said differences show up -- making the proper placements relatively easy, or even just coincidental. 2) The painter knew his subject matter (blood stains on the human body) very well. 3) The researchers, wanting to see the proper differences, were able to imagine them.
- This gives us at least 3 more areas for our microscopes...
- And then, I still think that the vast preponderance of the evidence, so far discussed, does support Shroud authenticity -- at least to the point that the Shroud displays some sort of imprint of an actually and recently tortured and crucified human body -- but that I haven't really laid out the evidence in such a manner as to support effective addition of it...
- I guess that my primary claim at this point is that, in order to correctly evaluate the Shroud, we don't need any new evidence -- we just need to understand the evidence we already have. To do that, we just need to lay it out in a well organized way -- to sort of "regroup." If that isn't enough, we need to get out our microscopes.
- Or vice versa.

III, 95, Steen:
- And I still think that the actual imprint is so obviously a forgery, because it looks exactly like the established image of Jesus, and on top of that, it rather looks like a stylised image, not like a realistic image.
- If I had had access to the shroud, I would examine if the head had been painted separately from the body.

III, 96, Jabba:
- Thanks for hanging in.
- Why would you think that the head was painted separately?

III, 97, Steen:
- It was just a thought, because the head seems so stylised.


...................................................................................................................................................................................................
III, 95 in part, Steen:
- And I still think that the actual imprint is so obviously a forgery, because it looks exactly like the established image of Jesus, and on top of that, it rather looks like a stylised image, not like a realistic image.

III, 98, Jabba:
- When I claim that the image is an "imprint," I mean that it was not painted directly on to the Shroud -- if paint was used in this case, it was painted on something else (apparently, a body), and then transferred to the Shroud by placing the Shroud over (and under) the "something else."
- Is that what you mean by "imprint"

III, 108,Jabba:
Steen,
- If you're still hanging in there, you seem to be the only one.
- If you are still hanging in there, can you answer that last question?
- If you,re not still hanging in there, let me know and I'll move on -- though, it's still my opinion that there remains all sorts of implications in the details not yet scrutinized.
I really don't think that we need any new material in order to come to some interesting conclusions here. It just takes a lot of patience.


>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
III, 66, Steen:
- Why?
- Why do you think that knowledge of how blood flows has not been wide-spread in former times? If you look at old paintings, they do in fact differentiate in the blood flows of the different wounds.

III, 67 in part, Jabba:
- Interesting. Do you have an example on the Internet?...

III, 68, Steen:
- Of a painting of the crucifixion? I am sure there are tons of them!

III, 99, Jabba:
- No. A painting (of the crucifixion) that shows a difference between venous and arterial blood stains.
- If there are not any of those, and if there are more than one or two instances on the Shroud that seem to show the difference, you've got a hard case to hoe.

III, 100, Flower:
- But does the shroud show that? Or is it just another case of seeing what they want to see?
The picture is vague at best (to say it in a nice way, rude people could use something like "bloody crappy"), and yet, they are able to elude fantastic details. Not from direct observations, but from old photos!
And we're talking about photos that have been subjected to some degree of adjustment, not the raw data.
- Seeing things beyond the limit of detection is a hallmark of pseudo-science!
- Remember the one who was able to identify the coins placed on the eyelids? And read the inscriptions on them? And reading the text on the death certificate that had allegedly been pinned to the shroud?
The shroudists are so tangled up in the urge to prove it, that they will see and accept anything to support their predetermined conclusion (another hallmark of pseudo-science).
- .......... and once people have wasted a huge amount of work flogging said dead horse, it is simply too painful to admit that it is dead.
They prefer to insist that they can see movement (and disregard that the only movement is caused by maggots).
- Until the RCC can deliver an objective C-14 test that puts the dating right, any other discussion is worthless.

III, 101, Jabba:
Flower,
- That might be the most basic question -- or, two questions. How biased and credulous are the researchers, and how extensive, professional and conclusive are their tests?
- In my opinion, the tests of the many researchers claiming authenticity are much more extensive, professional and conclusive than are the tests of the few researchers claiming forgery. And in fact, in my opinion, the many researchers claiming authenticity are less biased and credulous than are the few claiming forgery...
- I've tried to present that case, somewhat, in the past, and should probably make that my next focus. For now, however, I need to track down the specific claims about venous vs arterial stains on the Shroud.

III, 102, Flower:
- Again: The C-14 puts it 1000 years off the mark!
Until that test is repeated, your horse is dead, sir!
(but you keep fiddling with the maggots)
- Yes, scientists make serious mistakes when they really want something to be true.
Rene Blondlot was a revered physicist, and should not fall for that kind of self-deception. But the story about Blondlot and the N-rays are a classic. http://www.skepdic.com/blondlot.html

III, 103, Jabba:
Flower and Steen,
- Just to keep you informed -- I'm working on the shape of blood stain issue. So far, the claim is 4 examples of venous blood and 1 example of arterial blood. I'll try to digitize the best picture I have of these stains. Admittedly, I can't really see the difference...
- I'll be back.

III, 104, Flower:
- And no matter the result, it will at best indicate that a mutilated stiff had been rolled in the rag.
- But you are right (and you are honest, you deserve credit for that!) after 800 years you can only tell if it is one or the other IF you have been told beforehand.
- It does not touch the main objection at all: "The dating does not fit"

III, 105, Jabba:
Flower,
- First, I think you gotta suspect that bias goes pretty much equally both ways -- and, scientists also make serious mistakes when they don't want something to be true...
- It's easy to suspect us 'religious' people of ad hoc reasoning and of according more weight to our evidence than it deserves. And then, superficially at least, atheists seem only owning up to the bad news, and would just as soon be proven wrong. But, I don't think that last part is true. Here's why.
1) Hope can be painful -- atheists have just shed their hope. Better dead than red.
2) The atheist's reflex re cognitive dissonance is probably just as strong as mine.
3) And, atheists want to win just as much as I do.
- Then, can we simply discard (based upon the carbon dating (that is, itself, seriously challenged in peer-reviewed journals)) all the evidence supporting an earlier date? There's lots of evidence out there to be considered, and minus the carbon dating, the vast majority of it favors authenticity (IMHO).

III, 106, Jabba:
- As you know (I think), I am trying to lay out our debate on my website in a way that is more easily followed and evaluated. To aid that process, I am starting to begin each sub-debate with my version of an abstract of the sub-debate. I have copied my abstract of the blood flow shape below. If you summarize that sub-debate differently, please let me know and I will post that too. You can find this particular sub-debate at http://messiahornot.com/ShroudClotShape2.php.
- Abstracts (so far)
Jabba, 3/15/11: I have claimed that
1) 'blood' stains on the Shroud show characteristic shapes of venous and arterial blood flows, and in the right places -- and that
2) 14th century artists probably wouldn't know the difference between the two -- and, if they did, they wouldn't know where to place them.
- My opponents have claimed that some artists of the 14th century would know the difference and where to place them -- but so far, they have not supplied any examples of such. Their other suspicion is that recognizing these differences is very subjective, and the researchers are seeing what they want to see. So far, my evidence to the contrary is weak.
- Consequently, the basic question right now is how clear are the differences. I'm tracking that down.
?

III, 107, Flower:
- I hereby officially resign from this debate.
- It has been fun at times, and there were times, when it really looked like Jabba would lean towards a scientific mindset.
.... but until there are (really!) new actual data, there is nothing to gain for anybody by wasting time on that piece of cloth.
- New data could be:
- A new C-14, sampled from places on said cloth that pros as well as cons can agree to be representative, then analyzed by different independent laboratories that has not been told anything but: "Cloth sample from collection. To be dated".
- Then we can play again.
- But this will never happen, because the cashiers as well as the Jolly Mullahs of the RCC have absolutely no interest in such a test.
- Wishful thinking (and ignoring the smell and the maggots) will not resurrect your horse, no matter how hard you beat it!