One of the Great Baptistries of the Roman World


(George Brooks) #1

Here is a photo of an amazing Roman artifact … a baptistery dedicated to the work of Salvation.

Why Evangelicals think we have to have a literal Adam and Eve couple to justify atonement is rather incomprehensible to me.

It is obvious that human nature is flawed. How it got that way doesn’t seem to matter. If the entire state of Florida goes under water because of rising ocean levels… does it really matter whether it is a natural cycle or an unstoppable human influence?

The Dutch didn’t say “We didn’t make the tides and the storms… so there’s not much point in building Dikes!” No.

They built dikes to control something as Uncontrollable as natural tidal and storm floods… and 25% of their country has been retrieved from the Atlantic for generations.

Human nature is flawed… and sinful … and requires atoning if there is to be an expectation of communing with the Divine in the afterlife.

And Adam and Eve makes for a great bedtime story …


#2

It does matter, because we can do something about it.


(George Brooks) #3

@beaglelady

Perhaps you are thinking on lots of levels at once… my point is that whatever the reason, we can still do something about it … just like the Dutch built dikes even when they knew darn well humans weren’t creating the storm floods and tides…


#4

It does matter whether it is a natural cycle or an unstoppable human influence, although I wouldn’t characterize the human influence as unstoppable. We can control the human influence, just as a smoker can quit smoking.


(George Brooks) #5

@Beaglelady,

On the political level, I absolutely agree with you.

However, on the personal level, and the national level, the Dutch were able to make a significant difference in their country by ignoring this difference.

No Dutchman ever said (or, very few ever said!) … you can’t stop the tide or storms… so what’s the point of the dikes?"

From a science and technology viewpoint, efforts to mitigate damage already done, and the new damages to arrive, are pretty much the same … if you are talking about mitigation !!

Painting building roofs white is beneficial in several regions, whether global warming is natural or human-driven (or both). Creating reflective layers of molecules for the arctic oceans may well be helpful, regardless of the sources of global warming… etc.

My dearest Beaglelady, I agree with your general view … but for the purposes of discussion, I was also showing that we need to do things even if we know the answer to the causes.


#6

Yes, we should do things whether or not we know the answer to the causes. We shouldn’t pretend we know less than we do. The overwhelming majority of climatologists recognize human fingerprints of climate change. (And please cut the patronizing “dearest beaglelady” crap.)


(George Brooks) #7

@beaglelady, Huh? I referred to you as “dearest” because I am genuinely fond of most of what you write and what you stand for (though this last post from you doesn’t make the cut :slight_smile: ).

Isn’t patronizing something that is done by those who disagree with you?

I sincerely believe that humans are contributing to global warming. The point I was most recently trying to make is that I wasn’t trying to dismiss global warming - - I was trying to show the power of human action even when the situation doesn’t seem to be the fault of humans (i.e., tidal and storm floods swamping out 25% of Holland’s total area).

I frequently use the example of the Dutch when disputing with global warming Deniers so they don’t start preaching to me that there is nothing to do if global warming is part of the normal earth cycle. Even if it were, and it isn’t, there would still be plenty of things that humans can and should do about it.

As my peace offering to you, let me show you how I prove to even the most closed-minded of Deniers how much humans have contributed to global warming.

Peace Offering to @beaglelady
The Facts of Human Contribution to Global Warming
Fact 1: for 800,000 years, the earth has been in a regular cycle of ice ages and ice melts. During these cycles, CO2 and sea levels have also gone up and down in a regular pattern.

Fact 2: most climate scientists believe the current configuration of the Earth’s continents (especially with the closing of the strait between the North and South American continents) 20 million years ago. While this seems to be a long time before the start of the regular Ice Ages, it is almost by definition that ocean currents help distribute - - or block - - movement of warm and cold around the earth. There was once a time when the continents were arranged just right for the entire earth to be covered in ice - - like a giant snowball! 1 million years ago, the continents appear to have come to a new arrangement making the earth susceptible to the regular influences of the Milkankovitch Cycles.

Fact 3: the Milankovitch Cycles, the name for a natural rhythm in the wobble of the Earth’s orbit, correspond with the ebb and flow of Ice Ages, low sea levels and high CO2 levels. For 800,000 years, CO2 levels have cycled up and down between 180 ppm and 280 ppm.

Fact 4: CO2 is a feedback loop, rather than the driver of cycles of ice and warming. When the “M” cycle enters the warming phase, the warming of the oceans causes “de-gassing” of dissolved CO2. This creates a new benchmark for retention of planetary heat. As the “M” cycle continues to increase warming, there is more de-gassing, and a consequent ratcheting upwards of planetary heat. Glaciers melt. Sea levels increase.

Fact 5: When the Milankovitch Cycle returns to the cooling phase, CO2 begins to re-dissolve into the oceans (with large quantities of CO2 being locked up in frozen banks of buried methane). Glaciers begin to build, and sea levels begin to drop.

Fact 6: Having CO2 levels at 180 ppm is low enough to allow glaciers more than a mile deep to grow over Manhattan. And levels up to 280 ppm are high enough to eliminate most of the Earth’s glaciers.

Fact 7: The Earth CO2 “load” is currently at 400 ppm. The last time CO2 was this high was three million years ago, with no related ice age activity at all until 800,000 years ago. (Ice Ages long before 3 million years ago were driven by a completely different configuration of continents).

Fact 8: If we subtract the highest natural level of CO2 in the last 800,000 years (280 ppm) from the current high, we can see that the Earth’s load of CO2 is 120 ppm higher than before the Industrial Age, or 43% higher than the natural high of 280 ppm.

Fact 9: By deduction, we can see that human activities have contributed nearly another half of the world’s CO2 levels!

Fact 10: The details of this discussion were delivered to me by Florida State University’s Professor of Oceanography, Dr. Jeff Chanton - - who gave the same explanations to our current Governor Scott.

Link to discussion about the importance of the joining of the two American continents:
http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=4073


(system) #8

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