Joi Ito's Web

Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

Reverend AKMA has an interesting post on the front-page story claim that someone has discovered the cave of John the Baptist and why he isn't into archaeology anymore.

This story reflects several problematic tendencies in the popular (biblical) archaeological market. We get their textual siblings over in literary historiography, so I’m not casting stones only at the other interpreters. But there have been heaps of hermits (I just spent way too much time trying to devise a collective noun for anchorites) in the Judean wilderness about whom we know absolutely nothing. We happen to know a little about one of them: John. So when an archaeologist finds a hermit’s cave that fits what we might expect John’s cave to have looked like, someone draws the inference that it actually was John’s cave.
Go AKMA! The image of heaps of hermits reminds me a bit of Life of Brian. ;-)


Wow! A religious person with a sense of reason. This cave is just like Noah's arc (sp) a myth/ledgon.


If you can read Dutch:

If you can`t read dutch, it says:

Fokke & Sukke
Think that's a very strong clue

It says:
was here."

Talking about The life of Brian, when The passion of the Christ was just out I heard some historian say that The life of Brian was probably closer to the truth. I don`t think he was talking about the spaceship though ;)

I was just reading the article. They do say the carvings illustrated the life of John the Baptist, but that might be a little hard to do without inscriptions. Ideally we would hear opinions of different experts, and a description of the carvings.

The article does say the carvings illustrate the life of John the Baptist, but we don't hear any descriptions of the carvings, or opinions of dissenting archeologists (although their existence is mentioned) or information about affiliations and financing. Who are these guys anyway? Any with top drawer reputations in their fields?

I did once hear a Radio 4 documentary (major, upmarket national BBC radio station in the UK) discuss a 'community of hermits' without any discernable irony.