The Lights of Heavens

#1
Gen 1:14 And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:

1. As improbable as this claim is, there seems to be evidence that these “lights” really did provide “signs”…
2. The stars, planets and constellations were given much the same names and meanings by different civilizations over 5000 years ago.
3. The different civilizations gave them roughly the same message – they pointed to the coming of a redeemer (I need to coo berate that claim).
4. This message seems to closely parallel the message in the western bible.
5.For instance, astronomy now suggests that there really was a star of Bethlehem -- a conjunction of Jupiter and Venus on June 17, 2BC seems to fit all the requirements.
6. If we look closely there appears to be all sorts of coincidences between the meaning in the stars and the message of the western Bible.
7. My question: is there a way to formally estimate the probability of the null hypothesis in this case – that the number and nature of the coincidences fall within 95% of what would be expected by chance?
8. That's probably not the standard way to ask my question -- I finished my study of statistics about 40 years ago, and my memory is slipping...
9. But anyway, I would like to do the kind of statistics used in the ESP test, but the cards being guessed at in that test were totally specific and the subject is either right or wrong with each guess.
10. Here, the coincidences are somewhat vague and we can't be sure that what astronomical characteristic could be what the Bible was referring to, is what the Bible was referring to.
11. For instance, different scholars indicate different events as the Star of Bethlehem, and superficially, either could be right.
12. Sorry that my question is so poorly worded -- but maybe, over time, it will become clear, and also interesting.
13. How likely is it that these apparent coincidences are the result of chance?
 
#3
Number 2. seems like an interesting question. I sort of wonder what linguists would say about that. To make it statistical, would have to be some way of measuring how far apart different words are, and some notion of what a random word assignment is. That's probably even harder if the languages don't have the same alphabet. Did they have unicode during genesis?
 
#4
Lol I didn't think we'd see you again. I'll allow it. We need some action on the forum and this should sound things up
Dason,
- It's good to be back -- I've been busy.

1. I want to believe in prophesy and that Jesus was the prophesied Jewish Messiah -- so, I really can't trust my own judgement.
2. But then, I have compiled what seems to me a lot of evidence for "magic."
3. I just don't think that reality is the deterministic machine that mainstream science is telling us.
4. For instance, if you believe in free will, you believe in magic...

5. Anyway, among other details:
5.1. The Jupiter/Venus conjunction would have been the biggest "star" that anyone alive had ever seen.
5.2. From Babylon (where the magi were likely coming from) the conjunction would have been just over the western horizon and Israel.
5.3. The Magi from Babylon were likely from the school founded by Daniel, the Jewish "prophet."
5.4. Could be that the conjunction would not be visible from the ground -- it would have been just on the horizon -- but the magi had towers.
5.5. In addition, the Magi were astronomers and would have known about the conjunction anyway.
5.6. It wouldn't have been visible from Jerusalem or Bethlehem -- note that the Israelites hadn't seen the conjunction.
5.7. What conjunction could be more symbolic than Jupiter/Venus?

6. There's much more, but this should get us started.
7. My version of the facts may not be quite correct -- but, for our purposes here, hypothetical facts are just as good as real facts.
8. Given these hypothetical facts, is there a formal way to estimate the probability that this conjunction really was what became known as the star of Bethlehem?
 

hlsmith

Less is more. Stay pure. Stay poor.
#5
If you made the decision to put on a fanny pack this morning and you replayed the exact same scenario, do you think there is a reality where you would defy the antecedents and not put the fanny pack on? If so, what changed to allow a different decision to be made when everything was the exactly same?

I would note that there was likely a lot less light/chemical pollution in the sky back in the day, so the visibility from terrestrial Earth would have been better for seeing space objects.
 
#7
'
Number 2. seems like an interesting question. I sort of wonder what linguists would say about that. To make it statistical, would have to be some way of measuring how far apart different words are, and some notion of what a random word assignment is. That's probably even harder if the languages don't have the same alphabet. Did they have unicode during genesis?
fed2,
- The internet has all sorts of writings about the naming of stars and zodiac. I started my search a ways back with real books -- one being The Signature of God by Grant R Jeffrey.
- Also, I'm not sure how accurate my "facts" are, and whatever you can find about the issue would be helpful.
 

spunky

Doesn't actually exist
#8
'
- Also, I'm not sure how accurate my "facts" are, and whatever you can find about the issue would be helpful.
Well, it is difficult to make a claim as general as "The stars, planets and constellations were given much the same names and meanings by different civilizations over 5000 years ago." and not be incorrect in a few instances.

A dramatic example might be in how Lucifer became associated with Venus in Hebrew and ancient Christian cosmology . Yet Venus was revered as the important (and mostly benevolent) god Quetzalcoatlamongst Mesoamerican cultures such as the Aztec and the Mayans.

Comets are another interesting counter-example. Caesar's Comet in Ancient Rome was considered an overall good omen and even the Halley comet has been proposed as a candidate for Bethlehem's star. Yet comets are almost always considered harbingers of bad news (again, especially in ancient pre-Hispanic Latin American cultures).

When it comes to cross-cultural comparisons, a "trick" a professor told me during my undergrad years was to see whether the same cultural claim holds amongst the Far East, MesoAmerican, Western and Pacific-Islander cultures. Whatever is true for one or two is rarely true for the other ones. Even seemingly sure claims, like solar deities being male,are not true in general (Japanese emperors are thought to be descendants of the sun goddess Amaterasu).
 
#9
Spunky,
- I agree that my statement regarding the extent to which different civilizations shared names and meanings re the "stars" is too nebulous to judge effectively -- but there is some sharing between civilizations, and I'm hoping that someone in our forum will provide some of the specifics.
- For various reasons, I don't have time to research all the sub-issues I'd like to (one reason is that I'm babysitting two grandchildren 5 days a week these days).
- That particular statement probably isn't critical anyway -- mostly, I'm hoping to find out if there is a formal statistical model for evaluating the probability that such "vague" coincidences between the stars and the western bible are not, in fact, coincidences. Unfortunately, I can't remember the appropriate wording for my question...
- Also, we can just drop that claim, and examine the extent to which the western bible reflects the Hebrew interpretation of the stars.
- Hopefully, I'll gradually learn how to express my questions better.