Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The image on the Turin Shroud: Is a laser like light the explanation?

There is debate among individuals who study the Shroud of Turin as to whether or not the image of a crucified man that appears on it is a scorch. I think one of the problems when discussing the scorch theory is defining a scorch. In common parlance, perhaps all of parlance, a scorch is the result of extreme heat. However,  pure light can have effects that mimic a scorch when it ages something - as it can do. 

Most of the arguments against a "scorch" theory involve the fact that has conventionally understood a scorch is caused by intense heat. Thus there are real scorch marks cause by the fire in the sixteenth century. The intriguing point was the finding of the Gilberts who examined the Shroud in 1978, that spectra of the Shroud image was identical to the spectra of the lightest parts of the scorch.

In the past two years, I have had cataracts removed from each of my eyes (I have only two, alas). My eyesight has been vastly improved, particularly my night vision. The tool used by the surgeon was not a scalpel but a laser. There was no subsidiary damage caused by the laser. 

The term laser is an acronym for "Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation." If a laser, which is pure light, can be modulated enough to remove tissue from an eye and cause no collateral damage, then the possibility that a laser like light could provide a process that would have "scorched" an image unto the Shroud ought to be considered until another proven method is demonstrated. 

The detail of the image is probably not as fine as the laser that removed my cataracts, or it may be finer. But my cataract removal indicates that a laser can function in very finite spaces and effect human tissue with no collateral damage.

Of course that didn't have lasers circa the 30 CE (AD) or later in 1350. I have a "simple" proposition. There are no scientifically supporter theories of the "method" of transfer of the image to the cloth. Any explanation of forger is very complex and actually so far as we have come, impossible. Thomas de Wesellow  claims that Christ's post-Resurrection appearances were all  expositions of the Shroud. He offers no convincing explanation of image formation. 

Applying Occam's razor, could it be that the "simplest explanation" of the image is in fact the Resurrection? 

The story of Genesis in the first book of the Bible and the introduction to the Gospel of St. John all revolve around light. Could it be that these stories, while not history have in fact a seemingly incredible insight: "And god said, let there be light and there was light." Christ is the alpha and the omega. Light was the Alpha, is his Resurrection and perhaps our own, the Omega.

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