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Ellen White a false prophet?!?!


rush4hire

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From the diseases that he [Calvin, ed.] suffered, it is clear that internally this was not a man of peace, but a man of obsession and deeply ingrained shame. His natural peaceful disposition seemed to disappear when the influence of religious belief entered him. This is a testament to the danger and evil of religious fanaticism and my guess is that he was trying to make up for the shame based self view he was taught to believe by his literal understanding of the Bible.

You can see how this was set up from his youth....

I think the problem here is that you are trying to do psychoanalysis from a great distance in time, and it is irrelevant to the historical issues, which have to do with the fact that God used Calvin to do a great work for Him in bringing the centrality of the Bible and personal faith in Christ to the forefront of people's study and concern, rather than dead saints, popes, and ceremonies.

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Speaking of which, you have not answered my question about John Calvin. You used what Ellen White said about Calvin as evidence that she didn't know what she was talking about and did not receive visions as she claimed.

This would be a relevant question if you had some external source that indicated that John Calvin was this way as a youth.

Again, here:

In his book, The Reformation,p. 459, Will Durant wrote of the youthful Calvin: "The available evidence indicates an assiduous student, shy, taciturn, pious, and already 'a severe censor of his comrades' morals;' yet loved by his friends, now as later, with an unshakable fidelity."

The is in fundamental agreement with Mrs. White's decrription of John Calvin when at that same age.

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None of that negates the main emphasis that Ellen White gives, which is the great work that Calvin did in advancing protestantism and the central place of the Bible as opposed to church tradition and papal prouncements. It doesn't mean he was perfect or that he had no problems or defects. The same could be, and is, said of Luther and even of Paul, David, Noah, Abraham, etc.

That's the problem with the winners writing the history. No matter how immoral, evil, or cruel a person is, they get a free pass as long as they have the correct doctrine or they say they are sorry to the right god....

Not true. Neither I nor Ellen White are giving Calvin or anyone else a free pass just because we don't concentrate on Calvin's or Luther's or Paul's or Peter's defects and wrongs.

Personally I think it was terrible that Calvin did some of the things he did, but those things do not detract from the great and important work that he otherwise did. I think David and Samson also did some pretty terrible things, but we don't dwell on those things. That would be to blow things out of proportion.

I have already quoted from The Great Controversy where Ellen White remarks that John Calvin's service and doctrines were not perfect. Again, Ellen White's purpose in writing that book was not to give a history of John Calvin's life but rather to show the pivotal role he played in the work of God during that time.

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One thing about repeating that which is not true, even if we at first doubted the lie, repeated often enough to ourselves it will become part of our viewpoint.

You might try addressing why Ellen White was so wrong about the Fox sisters since that is a pivotal point of her prophetic witness about what powers would combine in the last days.

There is no proof that Ellen White was "so wrong" about the Fox sisters. All we have is the fact that for many years they as well as others claimed that they had communications with the dead, and then one of them, Margaret, made a "confession" (in exchange for money) that it was all a hoax. This "confession" was itself shortly afterwards retracted. There is, then, no proof that this confession was true. It is your faith that she was telling the truth in that confession.

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...Your whole case appears to be founded on an attack of my character.

Is not your whole case founded on an attack on the character of Ellen White?

Originally Posted By: cardw

The link I gave you is his book online. So yes, I have read the chapter and looked at other relevant chapters including the introduction.

The problem with his book is that it is a triumphal form of writing, not a historical critical one. He basically states his conclusions without answering all the critics and avoids the more difficult ones by either not addressing them or providing an unlikely conjecture.

This is not the best form of analysis or evidence. If you want a serious form of analysis Ron Numbers is a good example.

But the link you provided is not to the book I asked you about. If the link is to the the book you are talking about, it is not the one I was referring to. The one I mentioned is titled, Dramatic Prophecies of Ellen White: Stories of World Events Divinely Foretold. It provides evidence that Ellen White was a genuine prophet of God. It is online but I am not sure if it is the one you read.

The chapters are on what Ellen White said regarding the American Civil War; The Rise of Spiritualism; Measured Counsel Regarding the Color Line; The Vision that Saved A Church-- Core Principles of Healthful Living; The Rise of the Papacy; The United States In the End Time; The Great Controversy Visions; The Overpowering Appeal (The Counterfeit Gospel).

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....One simple example of Ellen White's fantasy about being shown is the example she makes of the Fox sisters and their rapping. She states she was shown this to be the beginning of spiritualism and that the Devil and his demons were behind the rappings. Evidently Ellen White was taken in by this story and utilized it to justify the start the spiritualist movement, which is one of three great powers that were to unite to bring about the end. The Fox sisters themselves eventually revealed the rapping as a fraud. This directly contradicted Ellen White's statement in the Great Controversy that said...

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"The mysterious rapping with which modern spiritualism began was not the result of human trickery or cunning, but was the direct work of evil angels, who thus introduced one of the most successful of soul-destroying delusions."

And, in doing so, revealed that Ellen White did not have a special informant that told her the goings on of the spiritual battle for men's minds and souls.

You can read about it here...

Fox Sisters

If you read the whole article, there is good reason to believe that Margaret made a "confession" that was likely false. At the very least, it certainly does not support the idea that there is proof that the Fox sister were fakes or that Ellen White was "so wrong."

It reads in part:

Over the years, sisters Kate and Margaret had developed serious drinking problems. Around 1888 they became embroiled in a quarrel with their sister Leah and other leading Spiritualists, who were concerned that Kate was drinking too much to care properly for her children. At the same time, Margaret, contemplating a return to the Roman Catholic faith, became convinced that her powers were diabolical.

Eager to harm Leah as much as possible, the two sisters traveled to New York City, where a reporter offered $1,500 if they would "expose" their methods and give him an exclusive on the story. Margaret appeared publicly at the New York Academy of Music on October 21, 1888, with Kate present. Before an audience of 2,000, Margaret demonstrated how she could produce – at will – raps audible throughout the theater. Doctors from the audience came on stage to verify that the cracking of her toe joints was the source of the sound....

In 1888, Margaret told her story of the origins of the mysterious "rappings" in a signed confession given to the press and published in New York World, October 21, 1888. [14] In it she relates the following:

"When we went to bed at night we used to tie an apple to a string and move the string up and down, causing the apple to bump on the floor, or we would drop the apple on the floor, making a strange noise every time it would rebound. Mother listened to this for a time. She would not understand it and did not suspect us as being capable of a trick because we were so young."

Margaret recanted her confession in writing in November, 1889, about a year after her toe-cracking exhibition, when she realized that she would earn little money this way. Kate's first letters back to London after Margaret's exhibition express shock and dismay at her sister's attack on Spiritualism, but she did not publicly take issue with Margaret.[20] Within five years, both sisters died in poverty, shunned by former friends, and were buried in pauper's graves.

.....Kate Fox was considered to be a powerful medium, capable of producing not only raps, but "spirit lights, direct writing, and the appearance of materialized hands," as well as the movement of objects at a distance.[10] She was one of three mediums examined by William Crookes, the prominent scientist, between 1871 and 1874, who said of her ability to produce raps:

"These sounds are noticed with almost every medium... but for power and certainty I have met with no one who at all approached Miss Kate Fox. For several months I enjoyed almost unlimited opportunity of testing the various phenomena occurring in the presence of this lady, and I especially examined the phenomena of these sounds. With mediums, generally it is necessary to sit for a formal séance before anything is heard; but in the case of Miss Fox it seems only necessary for her to place her hand on any substance for loud thuds to be heard in it, like a triple pulsation, sometimes loud enough to be heard several rooms off. In this manner I have heard them in a living tree - on a sheet of glass - on a stretched iron wire - on a stretched membrane - a tambourine - on the roof of a cab - and on the floor of a theatre. Moreover, actual contact is not always necessary; I have had these sounds proceeding from the floor, walls, etc., when the medium's hands and feet were held - when she was standing on a chair-when she was suspended in a swing from the ceiling- when she was enclosed in a wire cage - and when she had fallen fainting on a sofa. I have heard them on a glass harmonicon - I have felt them on my own shoulder and under my own hands. I have heard them on a sheet of paper, held between the fingers by a piece of thread passed through one corner. With a full knowledge of the numerous theories which have been started, chiefly in America, to explain these sounds, I have tested them in every way that I could devise, until there has been no escape from the conviction that they were true objective occurrences not produced by trickery or mechanical means."

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It reads in part:

Thank you, John317, for giving a better understanding of some of the more unsavory parts of a force decidedly meant to lead astray from the simple gospel of Jesus. It seems that in trying to explain away that which is evil, too much comes to surface that might have been better left in the grave.

I'm satisfied to believe Love is determined to save all, however recognizing that some will not respond favorably to the best, whatever the human logic that is presented.

"That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust." Matthew 5:45 KJV

Regards! peace

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The full story shows that Margaret had ulterior motives for making the "confession," since (1) she and her sister, Kate, wanted to "hurt" their older sister; (2) she was becoming a Catholic; and (3) she was offered money by a reporter if she would write such a confession.

It is also important to note several additional facts:

(1) Margaret later recanted her "confession;" (2) her younger sister, Kate, never said that she agreed with Margaret's "confession;" (3) by the time Margaret had made the "confession," she was quite a heavy drinker; and (4) many people, including some well respected scientists, had verified over many years that something was happening that could not be explained naturally.

Again, when all the facts are taken into account, it certainly does not appear that Ellen White was "so wrong" about the source of the Fox sisters' "rappings." At the very least, one cannot reasonably claim to know for sure that the Fox sisters were falsifying their evidence of making contact with the dead.

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If you read the whole article, there is good reason to believe that Margaret made a "confession" that was likely false. At the very least, it certainly does not support the idea that there is proof that the Fox sister were fakes or that Ellen White was "so wrong."

What is clear is that the Fox sisters follow the money. One has to ask the question, "What is the most likely explanation?" Real spiritual power or greed?

It is quite apparent that greed was the primary motivator. It is obvious that if their power was real and they could get answers from the dead at will, they would be able to charge a lot of money for that ability. By Margaret's own report she states...

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"A great many people when they hear the rapping imagine at once that the spirits are touching them. It is a very common delusion. Some very wealthy people came to see me some years ago when I lived in Forty-second Street and I did some rappings for them. I made the spirit rap on the chair and one of the ladies cried out: "I feel the spirit tapping me on the shoulder." Of course that was pure imagination."

It is evident that Elisha Kane believed it to be a fraud.

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For a time, all seemed well. Leah, on the death of her first husband, married a successful Wall Street banker. Margaret met Elisha Kane, the Arctic explorer, in 1852. Kane was convinced that Margaret and Kate were engaged in fraud, under the direction of their sister Leah, and he sought to break Margaret from the milieu.

No other scientist accepted William Crookes and his research on the spiritualism. And for good reason. In his investigation of Florence Cook and the spirit manifested called Katie King he claimed that this was real.

You can read the details in this link

Details on Katie King and Florence Cook

Here is an excerpt...

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Between 1871 and 1874, Sir William Crookes, investigated the preternatural phenomena produced by Spiritualist mediums. He described the conditions he imposed on mediums as follows: "It must be at my own house, and my own selection of friends and spectators, under my own conditions, and I may do whatever I like as regards apparatus" (Doyle 1926: volume 1, 177).

At Hackney in 1863, lawyer William Volckman attended a séance held by Florence Cook, during which Katie King materialized. Suspicious of the spirit's similarity with Cook, Volckman seized the spirit, accusing it of being the medium masquerading as her ghost. Considered an exposure by Volckman and his allies, supporters of Miss Cook denounced Volckman's act on the grounds that he had broken his agreement to proper etiquette required in the séance, thus negating his credibility as an investigator. Moreover it was argued that since spirits borrowed energy and matter from their medium, it was not surprising that Katie King resembled Cook. Despite the defense of their position, Cook and her supporters were hurt by this incident, and sought greater evidence to support their position. To this endeavour, they turned to Crookes, who was a prominent and respected scientist (Noakes, 130-1).

A 15 year old Cook, alone in Crookes' house with Crookes' friends and family as witnesses, was said to have materialized the spirit of Katie King, who walked about, talked, allowed herself to be weighed and measured, and even held the family's baby (Doyle 1926: volume 1, 241). The sessions were held in the dark, because Spiritualists believe that materialization requires very dim surroundings to succeed, though occasionally some red light was used and some photographs were taken. As is apparently typical of materialized spirits, Katie's exact height and weight varied, though Katie was always taller than Florence Cook, with a larger face, and different hair and skin. According to those present, the two were both visible at the same moments, so that Florence could not have assumed the role of the spirit (Doyle 1926: volume 1, 235-240).

Crookes' report, published in 1874, contained his assertion that Florence Cook, as well as the mediums Kate Fox and Daniel Dunglas Home, were producing genuine preternatural phenomena (Crookes 1874). The publication caused an uproar, and his testimony about Katie King was considered the most outrageous and sensational part of the report. Crookes very nearly lost his Fellowship at the Royal Society, and did not again engage in Spiritualist research (Doyle 1926: volume 1, 169).

[edit]Jennie and Nelson Holmes

After news of Katie King had spread abroad, the American mediums Jennie and Nelson Holmes also claimed to have materialized her. Robert Dale Owen, the politician and avowed Spiritualist, had experienced this materialization and wrote about it in an article for the Atlantic Monthly in January 1875.

Just as the article was going to press, however, a woman named Eliza White stepped forward and claimed to have masqueraded as Katie. White's face matched that of "Katie King" in photographs sold by the Holmeses and their agents. Both the Atlantic Monthly and Owen admitted in public to being duped. Arthur Conan Doyle maintains that this "exposure" did more damage to Spiritualism than any other exposure of the period (Doyle 1926: volume 1, 269-277).

Investigations conducted by leading Spiritualist Henry Steel Olcott in 1875 re-established the credibility of the Holmeses in the eyes of many Spiritualists. The story eventually accepted by most Spiritualists was that Eliza White had been hired to pose as Katie King for a photograph to sell to the public. The Holmeses had not wanted to photograph the real Katie King, since bright light would have ruined the materialization. Once involved, Eliza White first extorted money from the Holmeses, and then sold the story to the press (Doyle 1926: volume 1, 269-277).

So it looks like there was a lot of co-operation between mediums to continue this fraud. This is very powerful evidence that the Fox sisters were frauds.

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If you read the whole article, there is good reason to believe that Margaret made a "confession" that was likely false. At the very least, it certainly does not support the idea that there is proof that the Fox sister were fakes or that Ellen White was "so wrong."

What is clear is that the Fox sisters follow the money. One has to ask the question, "What is the most likely explanation?" Real spiritual power or greed?

Is it likely, however, that a 12 year old Katie made those sounds up because of greed? Of course not. Nor the 15 year old Margaretta. That would really require a stretch.

It caused them great trouble at first, remember. They were ridiculed to the point where they were compelled to move. It did not make them popular or earn them money during those first years. On the contrary.

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The upshot of it all is that the evidence regarding the Fox sisters does not come even close to proving that Ellen White was a fraud. We have to conclude that it is at least possible they were genuine communications from the dead. That is, unless we reject the whole notion altogether and say such things never happen and cannot happen.

Do you yourself believe that there are evil spirits or fallen angels who sometimes appear, or have appeared, on occasion as the spirits of the dead?

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The greater and more important question is whether Ellen White's prediction regarding the rise of spiritualism has been fulfilled up to this point, or whether there is good evidence that her predictions regarding this matter have failed.

What does the history of spiritualism, or spiritism, reveal as far as far as Ellen White is concerned? What was the state of "spiritualism" in, say, 1847? And what has happened between 1848 and 2008?

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Is it likely, however, that a 12 year old Katie made those sounds up because of greed? Of course not. Nor the 15 year old Margaretta. That would really require a stretch.

Why do you ignore that actual facts and rely on conjecture? The Fox sisters could have any number of motivations to deceive their parents including finding themselves so far into the deception that they had no way out.

The fact is we have a written confession. The fact is Sir William Crookes was not a professional investigator, nor a professional magician and this is evident when he crosses over from being a scientist to a believer. His poor scientific method became evident when he was duped by Florence Cook and after this incident he no longer published any findings on Spiritualism. He was almost thrown out of the Academy of Science, because many suspected that he had become a collaborator.

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At Hackney in 1863, lawyer William Volckman attended a séance held by Florence Cook, during which Katie King materialized. Suspicious of the spirit's similarity with Cook, Volckman seized the spirit, accusing it of being the medium masquerading as her ghost. Considered an exposure by Volckman and his allies, supporters of Miss Cook denounced Volckman's act on the grounds that he had broken his agreement to proper etiquette required in the séance, thus negating his credibility as an investigator. Moreover it was argued that since spirits borrowed energy and matter from their medium, it was not surprising that Katie King resembled Cook. Despite the defense of their position, Cook and her supporters were hurt by this incident, and sought greater evidence to support their position. To this endeavour, they turned to Crookes, who was a prominent and respected scientist (Noakes, 130-1).

Harry Houdini offered a reward to anyone who could produce an actual spiritual manifestation. His reward went unclaimed.

Lets look at a few videos of magic and see what a professional magician can do...

Walk on Water

Levitate

Voodoo

Shadow Soul

The art of illusion requires special conditions and with many of these so called mediums there was the requirement of low lighting conditions and often involved a partner. It is quite clear that the Fox sisters were practicing a form of illusion. Close up magic is a special form of magic and has a smaller field of view, which allows many more varieties of illusions.

Here is an interesting link that gives a little more detail on the Fox Sisters and indcates that PT Barnum was part of their story...

Ghosts in Indiana

The fact that rapping was involved is a big sign that its a trick. All of these so called manifestations have been reproduced by magicians in one form or the other.

The fact that Ellen White was duped and placed it as a major evidence of spiritual manifestation really indicates the lack of any prophetic insight. She simply had normal human insights that have been reinterpreted to meet what people want to believe about her.

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It caused them great trouble at first, remember. They were ridiculed to the point where they were compelled to move. It did not make them popular or earn them money during those first years. On the contrary.

Now you are just making things up. The truth is...

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Young Katie and her older sister Maggie seemed especially suited for the role of medium, for they seemed pleased and excited by the phenomena and did not appear to fear the invisible communicators as did the other Fox children. Serious investigators who were attracted to the phenomena soon worked out codes whereby in-depth communication with the spirits might be possible. Committees of researchers tracked through the Fox home and did considerable knocking and rapping of their own.

In order to give their parents a respite from the knocking spirits and the crowds of the curious, Katie and Maggie were sent to their older sister Leah's home in Rochester, New York.

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The upshot of it all is that the evidence regarding the Fox sisters does not come even close to proving that Ellen White was a fraud.

I don't understand why, when Ellen White specifically states that the rapping the Fox sisters heard was "not the result of human trickery or cunning, but was the direct work of evil angels" doesn't indicate that Ellen White had no idea what she was talking about.

Ellen White makes even stronger statements about the rapping in Early Writings...

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"I saw that soon it would be considered blasphemy to speak against the rapping, and that it would spread more and more, that Satan's power would increase and some of his devoted followers would have power to work miracles and even to bring down fire from heaven in the sight of men."

This never came true because it was never blasphemy to talk against the rapping. The rapping was under public attack as fraudulent from the onset. Even without the Fox sisters themselves, this prophecy is a COMPLETE failure.

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We have to conclude that it is at least possible they were genuine communications from the dead.

We don't have to conclude that at all. Henry Houdini destroyed the Spriritualistic movement as recounted in this brief example...

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So popular was Houdini as a medium buster that he was asked to join a psychic committee by the science magazine, Scientific American, in 1922. The magazine offered a cash prize of $2,500 to any medium able to produce a true physical manifestation before its committee. Several mediums came forward, but the most memorable was Margery.

Known as "the Boston medium," Margery's séance room was filled with flashes of light, sounds of bugle calls, rattling chains, and trance speaking. The first Scientific American subcommittee that tested her favored her ability. When Houdini sat with Margery, though, he found that she was no different than any other medium he had seen¯she was a fraud. Houdini told committee members that he caught Margery levitating a table with her head and ringing a bell with her foot. After much heated debate, committee members voted four to one against awarding Margery the prize.

Just before the final report in Scientific American, Houdini challenged Margery to show her supernatural ability on stage in her home town at Boston's Symphony Hall. He offered her $10,000 ($5,000 to her and $5,000 to the charity of her choice) if she could produce a manifestation he could not duplicate. Margery refused to perform under such conditions. Instead, Houdini recreated her séance for the Symphony Hall audience. The exposé was so popular with fans, that Houdini made the how-tos of slate writing, rappings, spirit hands, and bell-ringing a permanent part of his show after 1925. He also extended his challenge, offering $10,000 to any medium who could produce true spiritual phenomena.

At the same time that Houdini was waging war against Margery, he was demonstrating medium techniques at universities, police academies, churches, banquets, and conventions. He published many articles and several books including Houdini Exposes the Tricks Used by Boston Medium "Margery" and A Magician Among the Spirits, both released in 1924. Houdini considered the latter book one of his great accomplishments. It exposed the methods of many famous mediums including the Fox Sisters, Davenport Brothers, Dr. Henry Slade, Eusapia Palladino, and Anna Eva Fay.

I don't negate the possibility of a spiritual world, but I have not seen any evidence of it through these types of parlor tricks. I think that if the spiritual world does manifest, it is done in a much less childish manner.

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Is it likely, however, that a 12 year old Katie made those sounds up because of greed? Of course not. Nor the 15 year old Margaretta. That would really require a stretch.

Why do you ignore that actual facts and rely on conjecture? The Fox sisters could have any number of motivations to deceive their parents including finding themselves so far into the deception that they had no way out.

Speaking of conjecture, Richard, what you are doing here and elsewhere is exactly that. You even say things like, "they could have," etc. You have no evidence or reason to believe that at 12 years of age, Katie was motivated by greed or by anything else. That is conjecture on your part.

One thing that should be clear is that a person has to decide whether they accept your version of what happened or Ellen White's. The facts themselves as we know them certainly may reasonably be understood to support what Ellen White said about the origin of those rappings, although if one accepts the confession as "the truth," then obviously Ellen White would have been wrong. However, it is entirely debatable whether Margaret's "confession" is true. There is no conclusive evidence either way as far as the Fox sisters are concerned. Certainly no one can say they KNOW without question that the whole thing was a hoax, and that is what we must do in order to arrive at the conclusion that this proves or shows that Ellen White was a false prophet. All anyone can say at most is that if the confession was true, then Ellen White was wrong. But the point is we don't know whether it was true or not. So it is a moot point, not one which anyone can legitimately use to demonstrate that Ellen White was a fake. It is similar in that way to your argument about her statements regarding John Calvin.

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Yes, and what a confession it was-- a confession that was the result of the urging of a newspaper reporter who offered Margaret money to write it. And a confession Margaret herself soon afterwards recanted. History of full of false confessions, Richard.

If we take your version of the events, we are faced with the necessity of accepting a confession written by a woman who had been living a lie and who returned to that lie within a short time after writing the "confession." Do you really want to depend on such a "confession" to make your point that Ellen White was a false prophet? Is that the basis of your argument?

That is no stronger than your argument about John Calvin, which proved to be just as weak and invalid.

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Well, if he did, someone needs to let all the people know who today are in one way or another involved in spiritism and spiritualism.

Also, tell all the people involved today in writing, selling, and reading the hundreds of books on the subject. Go to any large book store and look at the titles and see how many such books are sold.

Today there are well over 140,000 fortune-tellers, mediums, clairvoyants and psychic seers and it has created a 42 million dollar a year business. Major universities offer credit courses in witchcraft, magic, astrology, and sorcery. Compare this state of affairs with what was happening in 1847.

In 1932, after Henry Houdini supposedly "destroyed" the spiritualistic movement, the Canadian Prime Minister, William King, wrote that he believed he was communicating with his dead mother, father, siblings and others.

Today there are popular TV programs where so-called authorities claim to answer questions from people interested in what their dead relatives or friends may be doing.

During World War II, Lord Dowding, commander of Great Britians Royal Air Force, received convincing evidence through a medium friend that dead airmen were able to communicate with the living.

In recent times, there's the popularity of Edgar Cayce, Jean Dixon, Daniel Logan, Gerard Croiset, Peter Hurkos, Arthur Ford, David Bubar, etc., etc.

This is just a small part of the evidence, but it disproves any illusion anyone might be operating under that Houdini "destroyed" the spiritualistic movement. It is very much alive and growing today, just as Ellen White said it would be.

By the way, when you compare the way things were in 1847 with the way they are today in relation to spiritualism, what conclusion do you come to? Has spiritualism grown and spread since 1848? Or has it remained the same or gotten less significant? What does the evidence tell us? Compare the growth and spread of spiritualism during the hundred years prior to 1848 with its growth and spread during the 100 years after 1848. Was Ellen White right about it or not?

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That is not a "fact;" it is an interpretation of the facts with a lot of conjectures thrown in.

For one thing, you'd have to conclude that Margaret's "confession" was the truth, and I don't think any reasonable person would say that the evidence can ONLY rightly and logically be interpreted that way.

One may see it that way, yes, but it is also reasonable to see that confession as itself false.

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Speaking of conjecture, Richard, what you are doing here and elsewhere is exactly that. You even say things like, "they could have," etc. You have no evidence or reason to believe that at 12 years of age, Katie was motivated by greed or by anything else. That is conjecture on your part.

I'm not denying that. My point was that the Fox sister's childhood is not a place where we can find the best evidence.

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The facts themselves as we know them certainly may reasonably be understood to support what Ellen White said about the origin of those rappings, although if one accepts the confession as "the truth," then obviously Ellen White would have been wrong.

My point is, when we look at the whole spiritualist enterprise itself, during that time period, by far we know that these were hoax's. What is more likely, they were real or they were fake?

I think that when we look at the reliability of the so called scientific analysis of the Fox sisters, the witnesses such as Sir William Crookes, are clearly debunked because of their failures to see through other frauds revealed by more skilled examiners.

But, and I'm repeating myself here, Ellen White is clearly wrong in this prophetic announcement in Early Writings...

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"I saw that soon it would be considered blasphemy to speak against the rapping, and that it would spread more and more, that Satan's power would increase and some of his devoted followers would have power to work miracles and even to bring down fire from heaven in the sight of men."

And if she is wrong here about the rappings, I think it is likely, considering the weight of evidence, that she was wrong about the Fox sisters themselves.

Speaking against the rapping was never blasphemous and as far as I know no one ever called down fire from heaven. To me, this, along with other dubious claims by Ellen White, strongly indicates that Ellen White was not given special insight.

To be kind, I don't believe she was malicious and probably actually believed that she had prophetic gifts, but I think it is quite evident that she did not have these insights from any special visionary source.

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Quote:cardw

I think that if the spiritual world does manifest, it is done in a much less childish manner

Exactamente!

rat-a-tat, rat-a-tat-tat, rat-tat, rat-tat; raaat-tat, rat-tat; rata-tat, rata-tat;

Call Ghost Busters.

Silly, huh? I mean, c’mon, the Prince of Evil and/or his lieutenants resort to such silliness! ...don’t think so.

I suspect the ‘evil one(s)’ deal with mankind with greater finesse and/or fearfulness. Can we imagine that the ‘serpent’ elicited Eve’s attention with a series of rappings? Or, is there an incidence of rappings in Holy Writ? We may be well-advised

not to place too much credence in such suppositions; there appears to be more

trickery and fraud than spirit in those milieux.

Now, Criss Angel levitating! –that’s a peg to hang a dogmatic hat on. [/kidding] bwink

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