Video from Latest Dead Sea Scrolls Conference Now Available

(possible alternative titles included:)

“The South Carolina IHOP Improv Company Performs the Most Recent Archaeology of Qumran Conference.”

Video is now available from the most recent conference on the Archaeology of Qumran and the Dead Sea Scrolls.

IHOP Brawl

(Actually, it’s a video of a brawl in a South Carolina IHOP on the TMZ website. The wild brawl Saturday left the pancake house trashed.

Careful, there’s a little bit of language at the end.)

It’s not too far off. After all, it is Qumran. And besides, it’s not as brutal as this Qumran conference.

quote of the day: “i’m not going to argue with you, he was cute.”

Dr. Robert R. Cargill appears on Discovery Channel

"I'm not going to argue with you, he was cute." - Defense attorney David Breitbart on Dr. Robert R. Cargill.

In my review of the transcripts of the case of the People of New York vs. Raphael Golb, I came across the following statement, which caused me to laugh. The blush-inducing statement was made by Dr. Golb’s defense attorney, David Breitbart, during his summation (closing arguments). In his summarization of my testimony, Mr. Breitbart opened with the following:

“Let me call your attention to a young man by the name of Robert Cargill. I’m not going to argue with you, he was cute. I’m not going to argue with you. We [the defense lawyers] don’t look at anything else except you folks [the jury] and the witness, so we know he was considered cute, but that’s not the point.”

– Attorney for Raphael Golb, David Breitbart, during his closing arguments speaking to the jury about Dr. Robert R. Cargill (p. 1200, lines 8-12 of the court transcripts).

To my recollection, the jury was made up of a fairly equal number of men and women, most of whom were my age (and by that, I mean younger ;-). Apparently, Mr. Breitbart felt that I made a good impression on the jury, and so attempted to separate what I said from the one saying it. And, while I am fully aware that Dr. Golb’s attorney, Mr. Breitbart, shortly thereafter proceeded in his attempt to impugn my credibility, and that his use of the word “cute” was actually pejorative (that is, cute only, which is never good for scholars and news anchors), I find it humorous (as well as quite consistent with my experiences in life) that even in a courtroom, with the exception of my wife, the kindest compliments about my appearance still come from men, not women. Go figure.

I’m not really certain how to respond, other than to say, “Thank you, Mr. Breitbart. It was the kindest (and I’m guessing the only kind) thing you said about me all day.” ;-)

Walking and Texting and Not Paying Attention, Oh My!

Jim West has discovered a hilarious fail video. Watch carefully.

This woman, angry that people are chuckling at her for plunging into a fountain, is looking into suing the Mall… What absurdity. Sure, it’s not nice to laugh at someone who falls and potentially is injured- but let’s face facts: 1) she wasn’t paying attention to what she was doing. 2) she fell. Happens every day. 3) she wasn’t at all injured in any respect (except perhaps h … Read More

via Zwinglius Redivivus

daily bruin: tech-savvy professors take to tweeting

Dr. Robert R. Cargill's Jerusalem Course Twitter Page

Dr. Robert R. Cargill's Jerusalem Course Twitter Page

Flavia Casas has authored an article in UCLA’s Daily Bruin entitled, Tech-savvy professors take to tweeting.” In the article, the author highlights professors who have developed ways to incorporate and utilize social networking technologies into their classroom instruction. The article begins:

Logging onto Facebook, Twitter and Blogspot are all part of a hard day’s work for Professor Robert R. Cargill.

At any given time, Cargill may be uploading lecture notes, links to articles, or posting last-minute announcements on the Twitter account he created specifically for his UCLA course on Jerusalem.

Cargill is one of a few UCLA professors who have taken the uncommon step of integrating Twitter and other social media websites into their courses.

“The idea for me is to go to where the students are,” Cargill said. “If I’m truly interested in teaching students, I’ll meet them halfway.”

Part of my job as Instructional Technology Coordinator at UCLA is to assist university instructors with incorporating new technologies into their courses. Twitter, Facebook, blogging, YouTube, iTunes U, and UCLA’s CCLE/Moodle online learning management system have provided my students with up-to-date resources and notifications regarding my Jerusalem, the Holy City course. Perhaps the best part is that it’s all automated: an update to the blog automatically updates my Twitter page, which in turn updates my course Facebook page. Students are therefore provided with class updates in the places they already are, and what looks like a lot of work is actually quite simple.

If you’d like to learn more about incorporating social networking into your classroom instruction, please feel free to contact me at cargill(at)humnet(dot)ucla(dot)edu.

the top 8 archaeologists who suck at their job

Fictional Archaeologists

If you clicked on this blog to see a list of the top 8 real archaeologists who suck at their job, then you will certainly be disappointed.  For, while creating a list of the top real archaeologists who suck at their job is quite tempting (names are beginning to pop into my head…), this list is a list of fictional archaeologists who suck.

So, via (and with thanx to Scott Bailey), here they are.

on the origin of the jesus fish

Jesus Fish

ΙΧΘΥΣ or "Jesus Fish"

I recently came across an excellent article in a 1992 festschrift for David Flusser on the possible origin of the “Jesus Fish” by Gedaliahu G. Stroumsa entitled, “The Early Christian Fish-Symbol Reconsidered.”

In the article, Dr. Stroumsa discusses some of the early studies on the origin of the Greek acronym ΙΧΘΥΣ (ichthus), and then presents his theory, which ties Jesus (whose Hebrew name is Yeshua or Joshua) to Joshua ben Nun, who led the Israelites into the “Promised Land.” Because נון (“nun“) in Aramaic means “fish,” and because there are several eschatological and messianic references to fish in Jewish literature (especially those linking the messiah to Jonah, who was swallowed by great fish only to be returned to life after three days, and those referencing that a leviathan would be eaten at a messianic meal), Stroumsa argues that the word ΙΧΘΥΣ first originated in Aramaic-speaking circles as a reference to the messiah, and only then, as what would become the orthodox Christian theology evolved, did the word become a convenient Greek mnemonic acronymic formula for Ἰησοῦς (Iēsous = “Jesus”), Χριστός (Christos = “Christ” or “anointed”), Θεοῦ (Theou = “of God” or “God’s”), Υἱός (huios = “Son”), Σωτήρ (sōtēr = “Savior”), first mentioned in Tertullian’s treatise On Baptism.

The article is well worth a read.

“The Early Christian Fish-Symbol Reconsidered.” in I. Gruenewald, Sh. Shaked and G. G. Stroumsa, eds., Messiah and Christos: Studies in the Jewish Origins of Christianity, in Honour of David Flusser ( Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 1992), 199-205. PDF

HT: Toto

Matt 25:35: For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, *with a permit* (Houston Revised Edition)

“For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, with a permit.”
– Matthew 25:35 (Houston Revised Edition)

Bobby "Tre9" Herring, center, prays with John Bradley who had been on the streets for 41/2 months after his roommate lost his job and created financial stress during Feed a Friend anniversary event, Nov. 12, 2010, in Houston, under the Main Street bridge near downtown.

Bobby "Tre9" Herring, center, prays with John Bradley who had been on the streets for 41/2 months after his roommate lost his job and created financial stress during Feed a Friend anniversary event, Nov. 12, 2010, in Houston, under the Main Street bridge near downtown. Photo by Eric Kayne for the Chronicle.

It seems you can’t even help the poor any more without a permit.

Bobby and Amanda Herring spent more than a year providing food to homeless people in downtown Houston every day. They fed them, left behind no trash and doled out warm meals peacefully without a single crime being committed, Bobby Herring said.

That ended two weeks ago when the city shut down their “Feed a Friend” effort for lack of a permit. And city officials say the couple most likely will not be able to obtain one.

Read more of the article by Bradley Olson in the Houston Chronicle here.

writing the dead sea scrolls playlist available on youtube

There is now a “Writing the Dead Sea Scrolls” playlist on YouTube.

In this National Geographic Channel special, Dr. Robert R. Cargill (UCLA) investigates old clues and new scientific evidence in an effort to determine once and for all who wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls.

The show will air again on January 25, 2011.

bible study group preparing for bible aptitude test

The Onioni loved this story from the onion today:

ALBANY, GA—A local Bible study group led by 18-year-old Elna Parker has begun meeting more frequently and taking regular practice exams in preparation for the upcoming high-pressure Bible Aptitude Test. “The fact is, if you want to get into a good church these days, you have to do really well on your BATs,” Parker told reporters Wednesday as she flipped through a heavily highlighted King James Bible. “My cousin didn’t take them seriously, totally blew his Second Maccabees, and wound up in a Unitarian congregation.” Parker went on to say that the math section was a breeze, since it was all threes, sevens, and 12’s, but memorizing the 3,087 character names is where most people trip up.

universities in israel: centers of free thought and speech or administration controlled censorship?

i thought ben gurion university was in israel, not in china. this is actually a quite fascinating story, for all the wrong reasons. jim west brings us this story:

Freedom of Speech Takes Another Whack in Israel The Chronicle of Higer Ed Following a series of high-profile disputes over the political views expressed by its faculty members, Ben-Gurion University in Beersheba has amended its code of ethics to ban professors from expressing their personal politics in class or using the name of the university when engaging in political activity off campus, unless it is regarding the university itself, reports YNet News. “While airing political or religious opinions in public, as distinguished from specific professional opinions, faculty members will not make any use of the name of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev,” says the new code. … Read More

So keep your views to yourself.  Especially if they conflict with official State policy.  Nothing says democracy like clamping down on Faculty.

HT: Zwinglius Redivivus

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