User talk:Davidbena

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Welcome![edit]

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Welcome to Wikipedia, Davidbena! I have been editing Wikipedia for quite some time. Thank you for your contributions. I just wanted to say hi and welcome you to Wikipedia! If you have any questions check out Wikipedia:Questions, or feel free to leave me a message on my talk page or type {{helpme}} at the bottom of this page. I love to help new users, so don't be afraid to leave a message! I hope you like the place and decide to stay. Here are some pages that you might find helpful:

I hope you enjoy editing here and being a Wikipedian! Also, when you post on talk pages you should sign your name using four tildes (~~~~); that should automatically produce your username and the date after your post. Again, welcome! I dream of horses If you reply here, please leave me a {{Talkback}} message on my talk page. @ 02:33, 22 August 2013 (UTC)

Davidbena, you are invited to the Teahouse[edit]

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Hi Davidbena! Thanks for contributing to Wikipedia.
Be our guest at the Teahouse! The Teahouse is a friendly space where new editors can ask questions about contributing to Wikipedia and get help from peers and experienced editors. I hope to see you there! Ushau97 (I'm a Teahouse host)

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Yemenite Jewish Customs[edit]

Just so you know, your article was posted to "Davidbena:Yemenite Jewish Customs" which had it out in the regular article space. Since your article is nowhere near ready for the main encyclopedia, I've moved it to a sandbox under your user page. You can now find the article at User:Davidbena/Yemenite Jewish Customs. Please keep it there until it's ready for the main article space. Thanks and if you have any questions about the hows and whys of me doing this, you can message me at my talk page which you can find a link for in my signature. Dismas|(talk) 10:06, 26 August 2013 (UTC)

Thanks. Yes, I was planning on editing the article and adding much more when time permits. As time goes on, the article will improve vastly. Davidbena (talk) 10:43, 26 August 2013 (UTC)

Talkback: you've got messages![edit]

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A kitten for you![edit]

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This kitten is for having a great attitude and being willing to learn about the sometimes-strange ways that Wikipedia works. I think you are going to be a fine editor who will bring a fresh point of view to Wikipedia.

Guy Macon (talk) 13:48, 28 August 2013 (UTC)

Hooray! You created your Teahouse profile![edit]

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Thank you for introducing yourself and contributing to Wikipedia! If you have any questions feel free to drop me a line at my talk page. Happy Editing!
~ Anastasia (talk) 20:21, 28 August 2013 (UTC)

Talkback[edit]

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Dismas|(talk) 11:48, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

Copyright concerns[edit]

Your sandbox draft User:Davidbena/sandbox/Yemenite Ketubba gives an impression that it is copied from material already published elsewhere, such as http://www.scribd.com/doc/95809449/The-Yemenite-Ketubba-Abridged and http://www.globalyeshiva.com/profiles/blogs/the-yemenite-ketubbah-marriage. It is not clear that the copyright in that content has been released to Wikipedia, and Wikipedia has a very strict policy regarding copyright violation, even on user pages. In any case it is pointless to add to Wikipedia a direct copy of material which is already published. The wording of some of the footnotes in the draft is in the first person, and this is not appropriate for an encyclopedia. - You do need to understand how Wikipedia works before you try to post articles, even draft ones. - David Biddulph (talk) 12:08, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

Yes, it is my article, which was published in the "Jubilee Edition" of Professor Yosef Tobi, Haifa University. I give my permission to have it published here, on Wikipedia. As for the wording in some of the footnotes, I will be willing to re-edit its content. Davidbena (talk) 12:23, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

The process for releasing copyright is given at WP:Donating copyrighted material; it is not sufficient just to mention it here on your user talk page. But see my previous comment; Wikipedia is not here to provide a repository for material previously published elsewhere. - David Biddulph (talk) 12:37, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

Actually, the article has been revised. It is my article and there is room for it on Wikipedia (IMHO). As for the two URL links that you provided, one is a site for uploading PDF files to be seen by others internationally and downloaded. The other is a web-site of religious Orthodox Jews, of which I am a member. Members are free to upload material and discuss different issues. Anyway, I can make more revisions in the text if necessary to make it applicable for insertion in the Wikipedia online Encyclopedia. I will read the copyright link that you have given, and do whatever is required of me. Sincerely, Davidbena (talk) 12:45, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

David, I have just now added to my article on "globalyeshiva.com" the legal text: "The text of this page is available for modification and reuse under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 Unported License and the GNU Free Documentation License (unversioned, with no invariant sections, front-cover texts, or back-cover texts)." As for the other website, "scribd.com," I have deleted my article from that venue (web-site). Is it still necessary to receive a written consent from the publishers of the "Jubilee Edition" of Professor emeritus Yosef Tobi from Haifa University (Israel) and to have them e-mail their consent to Wikipedia? Also, I will add {{OTRS pending}} to the Talk page of "Yemenite Ketubba." Davidbena (talk) 13:23, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

In accordance with your directives, I have duly changed the wording of footnotes # 7 and 9 so that they are no longer in the first person. Davidbena (talk) 13:44, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

Talkback[edit]

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Andrew327 20:52, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

Please only have one draft at a time[edit]

Hello, you currently have drafts at

Please do not have multiple copies of one article, simply do all your drafting for the topic on one page. If you need to look "back in time" at an earlier draft, use the History tab at the top of the page. So there is no need to "preserve" old drafts on multiple pages, since all old versions can be viewed by you.

Please choose one draft, and mark any extra pages by pasting at the top of the page the code {{db-author}}, meaning that you want the extra page deleted. MatthewVanitas (talk) 14:07, 31 August 2013 (UTC)

David Welcome to Wiki, Your Patience and attitude is great.[edit]

Sorry you have been bit so hard by some of the editors. Some have abused you and clearly violated wikis rule of conduct. It is unfortunate that many who do this know better. Below is a post by a self described New Age editor with a bias against you. I verbally censured him on his talk page and you could bring his intolerant comments to an administrator for guidance on how to address his behavior. I am somewhat new also but know his stereotype is not tolerated on Wiki.

For a Bible thumper it may be very difficult to understand that the Bible is not wholly and objectively true. But as long as he keeps his faith in the infallibility of the Bible completely separate from his Wikipedia activities, he could be a good editor. Some years ago I did not know that one has to use reliable sources in order to edit Wikipedia, but when asked to consider it, I understood this is required from everybody and I complied with this request. For me, the decision was between complying and continuing to edit and quitting in protest; I was not willing to create problems through my edits. This does not imply that I lost faith in the truth of my contributions, but I have understood that they are required to be encyclopedically verifiable. And verifiable means having reliable sources.

Re: Newbie[edit]

You have new message/s Hello. You have a new message at GorillaWarfare's talk page. Message added 18:12, 2 September 2013 (UTC).

You have new message/s Hello. You have a new message at GorillaWarfare's talk page. Message added 00:51, 3 September 2013 (UTC).

Welcome to the Teahouse![edit]

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from: PRFEDA —Preceding undated comment added 20:38, 8 September 2013 (UTC)

Re. Message[edit]

You have new message/s Hello. You have a new message at Anupmehra's talk page.

Welcome Back[edit]

Your insight is important to Wikipedia. Cheers - Ret.Prof (talk) 00:51, 3 February 2014 (UTC)

Yes, I think the timing was right. I have been so busy lately translating papers from Hebrew into English that I have had little time to engage on Wikipedia. The problem with some of the people is that they will say I am quoting primary sources, but when you quote secondary sources they claim that they are merely hypotheses. Then, they will try to discredit the contributor by hoping to find other faults with him, rather than stick to the issue at hand. These people do a GREAT DISSERVICE to Wikipedia, and stymie the truth. In my opinion, such people should be banned permanently for such attitudes. It is dogma that they're more interested in, rather than conveying the truth. Davidbena (talk) 02:34, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
Well said. - Ret.Prof (talk) 04:46, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
Also WP:SOURCES states "Unless restricted by another policy, primary sources that have been reliably published may be used in Wikipedia" - Ret.Prof (talk) 04:57, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
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Ramle as Gath[edit]

It is true that Haparchi recorded a tradition that Ramle was Gath, and some other medieval writers recorded it too. But I don't think it is true that any scholars today (i.e. relevant scholars such as archaeologists) take it seriously. I cannot find a single example, including amongst those authors who mention the tradition. I looked at about 20 recent archaeology books and papers regarding Gath, which overwhelmingly support identification with Tell es-Safi. Can you provide a source for what you are writing? Zerotalk 10:29, 25 March 2014 (UTC)

Thanks for your reply, User:Zero0000. While I am not an archaeologist, I do live in Israel and I have read many books on historical geography. I saw stated explicitly in the "Encyclopaedia of Eretz Yisrael (the Land of Israel)" that the ancient city of Gath is believed to be Ramla, before it was rebuilt in the 8th century CE. This view is repeated also in "Carta's Official Guide to Israel," all editions (to the best of my knowledge). Since I have access to many good books at the Hebrew University library in Jerusalem, I will further research this subject. Meanwhile, however, we cannot speculate here without sufficient proof based on epigraphic sources. Since some modern archaeologists are swift to claim by "conjecture" that a dig may have been the ancient Gath, it is only fair to mention the conflicting opinions. IMHO. One more thing, here (in Israel) Jews give utmost priority to traditions, seeing that often we cannot know about a certain thing or place without a tradition that has been preserved from generation to generation. Davidbena (talk) 13:35, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
Hi, I don't much trust the Carta guide, as its authorship is unclear and its purpose is partly propagandistic. I've also seen some bad cases of out of date information. However, the second English edition (1986) does not mention the tradition that Gath is Ramle. What it says is:
Gat: "Named after ancient city of Gath, one of 5 Philistine cities located in area, but whose exact site has not yet been identified."
G'ea: "Perhaps the site of biblical Gath(?)"
Kiryat Gat: "Named after ancient Philistine city of Gath, home of Goliath, which is believed to have been located in the area."
Tel 'Erani: "The tel was erroneously identified with Philistine Gath and was therefore known for a while as Tel Gath."
Tel Nagila: "Believed to be site of Gath, one of the 5 Philistine cities."
I absolutely agree that traditions should be mentioned. However they should be mentioned as traditions, not as facts, and popular traditions should not be confused with scholarly consensus based on physical evidence. It is quite clear that there is little or no scholarly support for the claim that Ramle is Gath. I have sources that state explicitly that the consensus (though not unanimous) is that Tell es-Safi is Gath. The Jewish tradition in the middle ages means very little regarding the facts, since there was no continuity of Jewish occupancy there even in the recent centuries, and certainly not since the foundation of the city in the 8th century, which itself was a millennium later than Gath. Scholars don't believe the tradition primarily since there is no evidence it was a significant population center at all during the period Gath existed. It isn't accepted by many traditional Jewish writers either; for example the famous geographical text of Rabbi Yosef Schwarz says: "Gath ... the usual assumption that it is the town of Ramleh, situated in the territory of Dan, I hold to be quite erroneous.." (and he gives reasons). Zerotalk 19:24, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
How does one distinguish between "popular tradition" and "tradition"? It was a Rabbi of the 13th-14th century who told us the prevalent tradition in his day concerning Ramla. As for a consensus, there is none - not even amongst archaeologists concerning Gath. There is, however, a lot of speculation. A tradition, in my mind, is stronger than mere "speculation." There are no epigraphic records to show that the archaeological dig at Tel Zafit, or elsewhere, is actually the ancient Philistine city of Gath. In fact, in the case of Tel Zafit, its names suggests the very opposite. It was Safitha. I will, however, at the first available opportunity, further research this subject. As for what you said about Ishtori Ha-Parchi's tradition being mentioned as such, namely, a tradition, I think I have done that. What I hope to do more is to show that this is not just a fringe view, and that a "tradition" where there is a doubtful case ought and should be taken into consideration. Look up the word "Ramla" in the Carta's Guide to sites in Israel. As for your comment: "...no continuity of Jewish occupancy there (i.e. Ramla) even in the recent centuries," presents no real problem, since the place known as Ramla is still the old Ramla and hasn't changed. What we're really interested in here are the FACTS. Let's lay all the facts out on the table, whether they be traditions or conjectures. By the way, I know personally a very good Israeli archaeologist named Boaz Zissu. Maybe I can also ask for his opinion and references. Be well.Davidbena (talk) 19:48, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
Carta's entry Ramla says it was founded in 717 and has nothing about an earlier existence or any mention of a tradition about it. Anyway, we are not supposed to make our own judgements about whether particular scholars are right in their opinions or not, and we aren't supposed to judge what is the consensus or not. What we have to do is report what reliable sources say about the subject, and the meaning of reliable in Wikipedia is heavily biased towards scientific scholarship with peer-reviewed academic writing as the most distinguished (see WP:RS). The Ramle=Gath tradition simply does not have any support in that literature as far as I can determine, so we can report it as a tradition but not as the opinion of scholars. I'd be interested in what Zissu says (I'm familiar with his work) but WP:NOR forbids us from reporting his words on Wikipedia unless he has published them. Zerotalk 21:04, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
OK, so you saw a different edition of Carta's Guide. In any case, the "Encyclopaedia of Eretz Yisrael" mentions the view that Ramla is the ancient Gath. When I go next time to the Hebrew Univ., I will cite both sources for you, and, hopefully, more. I have made no such judgments whatsoever about who is right and who is wrong, but only cited a source used by many scholars. There was/is a tradition that Ramla is Gath. This is worthy of noting. As for the other hypotheses they should be stated as well, as hypotheses. When scientific scholarship is divided, up and down the line, we must also fairly represent all views. For example, we also find outlined in WP policy what is called WP:UNDUE, according to which: "Neutrality requires that each article or other page in the main space fairly represents all significant viewpoints that have been published by reliable sources, in proportion to the prominence of each viewpoint in the published, reliable sources." A tradition doesn't necessarily have to be backed up with "proof," but must be reasonably accepted as a logical and likely possibility. When Israel has a tradition, as there are many, we are not always able to show by proof that the thing/event is as it is alleged. Tradition is just that - tradition. While speculation is just that - speculation. Boaz Zissu has written many articles, but if he hasn't dealt on the subject of ancient Gath, perhaps he can direct us to others who have.Davidbena (talk) 21:35, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
This might interest you, User:Zero0000. Michael Avi-Yonah, author of the book, The Madaba Mosaic Map, Jerusalem 1954, p. 63, wrote: "The name and localization (between Antipatris and Iamnia) are derived from On. 72, 2, but the identification with one of the Philistine cities has been added in disregard of the better identification ib. 68, 4. The Jewish tradition which located Gath at er-Ramleh has some foundation in archaeological facts, Ras Abu Hamid in the vicinity having been identified as Gittaim of Eusebius (B. Maisler in Sefer Assaf. Jerusalem, 1954, pp. 351-356 (Hebrew); id., Israel Expl. Journal, 4, 1954 (Reifenberg Memorial Number), pp.227ff.), which might be represented here. The additional phrase is taken verbally from Eusebius' description of Ekron (On., 22, 16), Ashdod (ib., 22,11) and Ascalon (ib., 22,15)."Davidbena (talk) 04:56, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

Talkback: you've got messages![edit]

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Thank you[edit]

Thank you for recording on English Wikipedia the events of Yemeni Jews in 1679. MarciulionisHOF (talk) 09:54, 28 September 2014 (UTC) fix typo MarciulionisHOF (talk) 13:37, 29 September 2014 (UTC)

Thank-you, Marciulionis. It is important for us as editors on Wikipedia that we not flout the good character and dignity of any people being described on the WP pages and articles.Davidbena (talk) 10:59, 28 September 2014 (UTC)
Thank you for the advice. MarciulionisHOF (talk) 12:06, 30 September 2014 (UTC)

September 2014[edit]

Information iconIt appears that you have been canvassing—leaving messages on a biased choice of users' talk pages to notify them of an ongoing community decision, debate, or vote. While friendly notices are allowed, they should be limited and nonpartisan in distribution and should reflect a neutral point of view. Please do not post notices which are indiscriminately cross-posted, which espouse a certain point of view or side of a debate, or which are selectively sent only to those who are believed to hold the same opinion as you. Remember to respect Wikipedia's principle of consensus-building by allowing decisions to reflect the prevailing opinion among the community at large. Thank you. NeilN talk to me 20:11, 29 September 2014 (UTC)

OK. I will desist from doing that. I was looking for friendly advice and help, and I will always uphold WP principles. If worse comes to worse on the current Talk page, I will opt for arbitration through the venue that you so wisely provided. Thanks again, Neil.Davidbena (talk) 20:22, 29 September 2014 (UTC)
David, just a procedural point: Arbitration is for misbehavior or bad conduct, not content matters. I think what you want is content dispute resolution in the form of either Dispute Resolution Noticeboard or Mediation Committee, but be aware that neither of those will be available for so long as the RFC is pending and it's got at least another 29 days to run. There is no system of content arbitration at Wikipedia. Regards, TransporterMan (TALK) 14:19, 30 September 2014 (UTC)
Thanks, User:TransporterMan, for this pertinent advice. I guess I'm stuck then, at least for a short while. I definitely feel it's worth a try. The picture of "Ms." International on a Yemenite page (in my view) is downright offensive. Any other advice will be appreciated.Davidbena (talk) 18:41, 30 September 2014 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Original Barnstar Hires.png The Original Barnstar
I read through your recently created article on Yihya Yitzhak Halevi, and wanted to award you this barnstar for the high-quality articles you have written about Judaism. Spirit of Eagle (talk) 03:05, 3 October 2014 (UTC)

images at Yeminite Jews[edit]

Just read what Writ Keeper wrote at the bottom of the talk page and I agree with it. Dougweller (talk) 08:50, 3 October 2014 (UTC)

We can't fight the system, can we? At least I tried upholding what I truly felt was WP policy and correcting what I saw as a violation of WP policies. I suppose that people look at things differently. Have a good day!-Davidbena (talk) 12:31, 3 October 2014 (UTC)

Kiryat vs. Kri'at[edit]

Qeriyat is not Qiryat. 'Nuf said. שבוע טוב, וחג שמח :-) (Shabúang tob, vejag saméaj) 75.128.215.87 (talk) 08:16, 5 October 2014 (UTC)

Special:Contributions/75.128.215.87, Shalom! I'm not asking that we change the spelling, but I can prove to you that the "nikud" is precisely punctuated as קִרְיַת שְׁמַע in some Jewish traditions, particularly, in the Yemenite Jewish tradition. This peculiar way of spelling (pronunciation) applies only to the conjunction Qiryat Shema, but not in a word like "reading of the Torah" = קְרִיאַת התורה, which is the correct spelling. One of the most renowned Hebrew linguists of our time, Shelomo Morag, has written on page 222 of his book, The Traditions of Hebrew and Aramaic of the Jews of Yemen, (ed. Yosef Tobi), Tel-Aviv 2001:
"The קִטְיָה pattern in nouns derived from ל"י roots occurs in the Yemenite tradition in forms
like פִּרְיָה וְרִבְיָה ,בִּרְיָה ,קִרְיַת שְׁמַע."
Of course, all this is only related to tradition. In the Eshkol edition of the Mishnah with the commentary of Obadiah di Bertinoro, it is always punctuated with the vowels קְרִיַּאת שמע - just as you have written. However, in the Mosad Harav Kook edition of the Mishnah, it is always written קרית שמע, without an "aleph." See: Berakhot 2:5, Sotah 7:1.
I have several facsimiles of manuscripts showing the vocalization as I have written if you'd like to see these. But, as I said, it makes very little difference on Wikipedia. Jag Sameaj!!! - Davidbena (talk) 10:02, 5 October 2014 (UTC)

File permission problem with File:Rabbi Yosef Qafih in his Private Study.jpg[edit]

Thanks for uploading File:Rabbi Yosef Qafih in his Private Study.jpg. I noticed that while you provided a valid copyright licensing tag, there is no proof that the creator of the file has agreed to release it under the given license.

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Eduard Glaser[edit]

Hi David, On 20 September you made a major expansion to the article on Eduard Glaser but omitted to properly specify your sources. It would be good if you could revisit the article and add them. Many thanks Aa77zz (talk) 20:59, 11 October 2014 (UTC)

Yes, I am gathering the necessary information for the bibliography right now. It will take me a few days. Meanwhile, I've made mention of the authors and the year of their publications, and have put these in parentheses. - Davidbena (talk) 05:54, 12 October 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for your reply. I've added what I believe are some of your sources - please delete if I'm wrong. As I cannot read German I struggle - especially with Lichtenstädter which is written in Gothic script. Aa77zz (talk) 07:16, 12 October 2014 (UTC)
I should rather be thanking you. I will double-check your sources.-Davidbena (talk) 13:27, 12 October 2014 (UTC)
Aa77zz, I double-checked your sources and they were identical to mine. Great work! You saved me much of the time and trouble of having to do this myself. I still added a few others, and there are yet more to add. Be well. Davidbena (talk) 20:17, 13 October 2014 (UTC)

Note at Talk:Spanish Inquisition...[edit]

Rather than try to fix the problem via reverts, I've posted a note at Talk:Spanish Inquisition. You'll get a ping but I thought I'd let you know here as a courtesy. Cheers, Stlwart111 06:03, 18 November 2014 (UTC)

File permission problem with File:Rabbi Yosef Qafih in his Private Study.jpg[edit]

Thanks for uploading File:Rabbi Yosef Qafih in his Private Study.jpg, which you've attributed to An OTRS notice was applied over 30 days ago, but no message at OTRS has been processed since this tag was applied.. I noticed that while you provided a valid copyright licensing tag, there is no proof that the creator of the file has agreed to release it under the given license.

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Biblical chronology[edit]

Hello David. I just left a comment on Talk at Biblical chronology, following your own comment of about a month ago. Would you be interested in working on this article? 180.200.136.161 (talk) 03:29, 5 December 2014 (UTC) (Reply here - I don't have a user page).

Barnstars for you![edit]

The Jewish Barnstar.png The Jewish Barnstar
For improving existing articles and building others from the ground up, it's hard not to be impressed.
Barnstar quill.png The Citation Barnstar
For accompanying the above with citations, with page numbers. Keep up the referencing.

Contributor613 (talk) 05:15, 17 December 2014 (UTC)

Western Wall[edit]

Perhaps you could help me with a question thats been bothering me. Who built the small stones on the top of the Kotel. It is a widly believed that Montefior built them to protect Jews form Arabs who pelted stones from the other side. However i have heard this is a mere urban myth Naytz (talk) 21:23, 2 January 2015 (UTC)

I have often pondered the same question, but I do not know the answer to the question. It is true that during the Jewish war with the Romans, the surrounding wall of the Temple Mount was made higher. So writes Josephus. But I don't know if what we see today are the same additions added to the original wall, or if they are merely a later addition. - Davidbena (talk) 18:22, 3 January 2015 (UTC)

Flood myth[edit]

Sources need to discuss flood myths explicitly, and Cooper obviously doesn't Using Seder Olam as a source looks like original research, ie your own interpretation of what it says. And note the article isn't about Noah's flood, but flood myths in general. Thanks Dougweller (talk) 15:04, 6 February 2015 (UTC)

Dougweller, I am aware that the article isn't specifically about the flood of Noah, but about "flood myths," in general, which, by its description, should also include the biblical episode of the flood. The idea behind bringing Cooper's research was to show how that it coincides with the biblical timing of the flood, based on the Jewish system of dating. This is plain by reading the research carried out by Prof. Cooper and his co-worker.
Doug, I'd be very pleased if you could help me with this one, because of its vast importance. Of course, since original research is strictly forbidden on Wikipedia, at best we can just mention the research conducted by Prof. Cooper and let others draw their own conclusion.
There were many stories about an epic flood, which in principle has its foundation, since this was etched in their memory as something far greater than an ordinary flood of waters. However, in those civilizations where there was no writing script, the story was passed down by way of oral tradition, and as is the case with some oral traditions, these stories could have been embellished over the years. The biblical account, however, is a written account, made by Moses, who was the 5th generation after Abraham. Abraham was aged 58 when Noah passed away. The account of the colossal flood was still very fresh in the minds of the people of Abraham's generation, since not only Noah was still living, but also Shem, the son of Noah, who endured that voyage.Davidbena (talk) 17:19, 7 February 2015 (UTC)
Really belongs on the talk page, shall I copy it there? Dougweller (talk) 17:47, 7 February 2015 (UTC)
Well, Doug, I just now raised the issue on the Talk Page. My answer, of course, would have been "yes, please do!"Davidbena (talk) 17:50, 7 February 2015 (UTC)

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Thanks[edit]

Thanks for thanking me. In hindsight, I should have given you, an established user, some notice that I was reverting your edit. I do apologize if you received a revert notification with my edit. Cheers! - Location (talk) 13:45, 17 June 2015 (UTC)

Population stats[edit]

Hi David. When you update population stats in the intro, could you make sure you do the infobox too? Cheers, Number 57 15:13, 17 June 2015 (UTC)

Yes, I will try to remember to do that, User:Number 57. I merely forgot to do that when I made updates today on certain pages. Be well.Davidbena (talk) 23:02, 17 June 2015 (UTC)

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Pseudoscience notification[edit]

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The Arbitration Committee has authorised discretionary sanctions to be used for pages regarding pseudoscience and fringe science, a topic which you have edited. The Committee's decision is here.

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Johnuniq (talk) 12:06, 2 July 2015 (UTC)

The "pseudoscience" warning is out-of-place since I have never yet, not even once, made an edit on the Intelligence design Page. I have only suggested what I thought would be constructive edits for this article on the ID Talk-page.Davidbena (talk) 14:45, 5 July 2015 (UTC)
User:Johnuniq, a good example of a "pseudoscientific" article on WP would be our modern-day Astronomy. By knowing what it is, we can infer from it what it is not. Intelligent design should not fall under the same category. The Intelligent design (ID) theory asserts that there must be intelligent causes to explain the complex and information-rich structures of biology and that these causes are empirically detectable. It asserts that certain biological characteristics violate the Darwinian explanation of chance because they were probably designed. Design logically presupposes a designer, wherefore, the appearance of design in our universe, or in man, is seen by its proponents as evidence of the existence of a designer.
One of the main arguments in the Intelligent design theory is the anthropic principle. The anthropic principle states that the world and the universe are very finely tuned to allow life on Earth. If the ratio of elements in the air would be changed just a little, then many species would die out quickly. If the earth were a few kilometers away are more or less of the sun, then many species would quickly cease to exist. The existence and development of life requires that so many variables must be consistent with each other, so that it would be impossible that all these variables are matched with each other due to random and uncoordinated events.
Albert Einstein, one of our renowned scientists, believed in Intelligent design. In response to a paper published by Max Born in June 1926 entitled, "Zur Quantenmechanik der Stoßvorgänge" (Quantum Mechanics of Collision Phenomena), Einstein wrote on 4 December 1926: “Quantum mechanics is very worthy of regard. But an inner voice tells me that this is not yet the right track. The theory yields much, but it hardly brings us closer to the Old One's secrets. I, in any case, am convinced that He does not play dice” (see: private letter to Max Born, 4 December 1926: [1] Albert Einstein Archives, reel 8, item 180). Einstein’s view was meant to refute that there is Randomness (indeterminism) in our universe. He felt that natural laws could not be like the throw of dice, with inherent randomness or probability (i.e. the opposite pretensions of the Quantum Mechanics theory), and was averse to the idea of randomness as a fundamental feature of any theory. He believed that randomness could appear as some form of statistical behavior but could not be a part of the law, just like a pack of cards that is shuffled according to deterministic laws still shows a random arrangement. Einstein's view, by the way, stands in direct contradiction to that of another theorist, Werner Heisenberg, who believed that at the fundamental level Nature is inherently random, and which view he codified in his famous Uncertainty Principle. In the final analysis, it is a scientific dispute, whether our universe is to be seen as evolving from "natural causes," or by some "metaphysical force" that has no less a form of consciousness as we do. Whether that be aliens, or UFO's, or something else, will be left-up to science to decide. Let us not be afraid to address these issues, and to give credit to those who are avant-garde in this field of research by making use of the applied sciences.
Just as many theories are disputed by scientists engaged in the debate, ID is no different, but stands on its own merits. One of the staunchest supporters of the ID theory is Lehigh University professor and biochemist, Dr. Michael Behe. He has brought down several strong arguments through deductive logic how that there is still much left to be explained in our Universe, and that the ID theory offers an alternative to Darwin's theory of random or "accidental" evolution. Scientific articles on WP are required to show "scientific method of analysis." Proof of "scientific method" as defined above can be seen in the dialogue between two professors on the subject of Intelligent Design on this YouTube video, [2], beginning from 11:57 – 20:46 on bacterial flagellum, but especially from 24:06 – 32:32, in which Dr. Behe speaks about the evolutionary laboratory experiment conducted by him. If you were to follow the arguments presented by these two professors, you will see that Dr. Michael Behe meets these qualifications of presenting “scientific methods” of analysis when speaking about ID. He uses scientific standards and methods to support his theory. Therefore, the term "pseudoscientific" in this case, for the Intelligent Design theory, is without question inaccurate. Dr. Behe's words are not merely idle protestations, but are and have been demonstrable with scientific (not pseudoscientific) research.Davidbena (talk) 16:59, 2 July 2015 (UTC)
You are entitled to your own personal opinion, however this is not how Wikipedia works. WP:RS/AC requirements are satisfied by [3] and [4]. More info at List of scientific bodies explicitly rejecting Intelligent design. Also, stating that Einstein would have supported intelligent design is very far fetched. Tgeorgescu (talk) 21:16, 2 July 2015 (UTC)
I disagree strongly, User:Tgeorgescu, about your understanding of Einstein. I have seen enough of Einstein's writings or quotes as to suggest that he was pleased at discovering how our natural universe is governed by a set of logical laws (call them the "laws of nature"), but which could never have been had there been an "accidental" or "random" existence. It is, for me, as plain as daylight. Einstein was, however, misguided in his ability to see how God can concern himself with small things, hence: Spinoza's God. Maimonides, in his Guide, already explains that God is sometimes at work through us. It is a profound statement which Einstein overlooked.Davidbena (talk) 22:34, 2 July 2015 (UTC)
User:Tgeorgescu, please note that in the first URL link that you posted, it says: "The sole dissenter from this position (i.e. of Darwin's theory of random evolution) [is] Prof. Michael Behe...", which is conspicuously untrue. He is not the sole dissenter, therefore, there is no consensus.Davidbena (talk) 22:38, 2 July 2015 (UTC)
You're wikilawyering over petty details. Read the whole NAS booklet, it is published online at [5]. The NAS made it very clearly that ID isn't science and this is simply a reflection of scientific consensus. The determinism issue is a red herring, evolution is agnostic about determinism. Tgeorgescu (talk) 22:44, 2 July 2015 (UTC)
Your link sends me to a web-site advertising a book which I cannot access. Besides, the author of that book brings down his own opinions, and perhaps the opinions of a few others, which are no more than a drop in the bucket. Scientists worldwide have many opinions, and many still support the ID theory. So, again, there is no consensus about ID, although there is a consensus in public schools in America that Darwin's theory of evolution should be taught. BTW: My wife's uncle is a nuclear physicist, who once served as Israel's Minister of Science & Technology, and he, too, believes in the theory of Intelligent design. He happens to be a religious man. Be well. Davidbena (talk) 23:21, 2 July 2015 (UTC)
And nobody takes issue with any scientist believing in ID as part of their religious beliefs. It is only when one claims that religious beliefs are science that we move into the realm of pseudoscience. --I am One of Many (talk) 23:33, 2 July 2015 (UTC)
User:I am One of Many, I have never once posited that religious beliefs are science.Davidbena (talk) 23:49, 2 July 2015 (UTC)
The booklet (freely available online at [6]) was written by a committee appointed by the NAS and it reflects the views of the NAS, as well as the scientific consensus in biology (and some other sciences as well). Behe has the right to disagree with most biologists because USA is a free country and he has freedom of speech. That, however, does not magically transform his dissenting view into science. If he would disagree with the heliocentric model, that wouldn't be science, either, even if he would be free to publish his view. Tgeorgescu (talk) 23:41, 2 July 2015 (UTC)
The journal of the National Academy of Sciences, while indeed a respected publication, is published by an organization not fully representative of all scientists, academics or laymen in our world, though one could easily be fooled by its name. To suggest that man cannot fully understand the complexities of our existence without accepting the views of Darwin's theory of "random" evolution (with all its flaws and errors), and that he must somehow cognitively avoid making any inferences from his observation of nature (albeit close to him), this is to belittle the intelligence of man. Even the laity, as well as those not connected with the laity, many academics and scientists, as well as philosophers (old and new), have published works worthy of our commendation relating to Intelligent design, which only begs the question, why is their view treated with disdain? Why aren't the views of Maimonides, the famous Jewish philosopher, mentioned in the article when he also wrote about Intelligent design? If an idea is true, it does not change in a thousand years. The idea can only be augmented. Are there no merits to this theory? Of course there are! Has it not been approached from a scientific and rational level? Of course it has! The current article on ID needs rewriting in its opening paragraph. Our first aim should be to define and explain the principles of ID (without bias), and only afterwards to bring-in the dissenting views, such as what may have also been published by the NAS. Let us remember that the ID theory is not only understood and adhered to by some scientists (e.g. Einstein), but by many laymen and common people as well, as if some things were self-evident. They also make-up a consensus. Nevertheless, the onus of proof does NOT rest upon their shoulders, since our aim is not to convince the public, one way or the other, who is right and who is wrong, but only to lay-forth the idea of Intelligent design, and to bring down reliable published sources that reflect that view (whether we agree with it or not), and just as the title of the article implies. I can write about Hitler's Nazi youth organization and its ideology without having to agree with that organization. It is the same principle here. Our job, as editors, is to give an open and honest description of the subject-matter, before delving into its peculiarities. The current article does exactly the opposite. It quotes four sources that allegedly call ID a "pseudoscience," but overlooks the other published sources that do not ascribe to that view. The article at the very beginning is biased, and points a negative picture at what is actually a scientific/theoretical view espoused by a vast number of people in our world. Be well, gentlemen (and ladies).Davidbena (talk) 00:36, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

Please do not edit Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/Pseudoscience/Evidence because that is part of WP:ARBPS which closed in December 2006. If something new were to be raised, I think it would be at WP:ARCA. However, that should not occur until after normal WP:DR procedures are followed. The issue concerns proposed wording at Intelligent design so the next step might be to get opinions with an WP:RFC. Re the topic: statements that attempt to explain what is seen in the world are part of science and require scientific sources. Any proposed wording should be accompanied with references known to satisfy WP:RS for scientific topics. I have asked a question about this at WT:Arbitration/Requests#New evidence for pseudoscience. Johnuniq (talk) 00:44, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

Okay, John. I will comply. Tell me, will you take part in the debate? I forgot to add your name as a party to this dispute.Davidbena (talk) 00:50, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
Until a proposed edit with sources that satisfy WP:RS is provided there is nothing to debate. Talk:Intelligent design is the right place and my comments there show that I follow that page. Johnuniq (talk) 03:06, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
So, that is your respected opinion. I disagree, however, with its insinuation that so far no sources have been shown to satisfy WP:RS. One excellent source is Maimonides, and even though he was a Medieval philosopher, he speaks about Intelligent design. Certain scientific or philosophical conclusions, if they be founded upon correct and proven principles, do not change in a thousand years. Moreover, I have suggested a brief change in the opening paragraph which, by all accounts, describes with brevity the fundamental issues behind ID, without forcing a biased opinion at the start. The problem, however, is that when I made suggestions for improving the article on main space, I was inundated by anti-ID editors, and their replies forced me to reply which, in turn, resulted in me being criticized for using the Talk-page as a forum. Ask most people (who are not involved in this debate) whether or not I've made sensible and constructive suggestions for the improvement of that article and I think they'll answer "yes."------ Be well, Davidbena (talk) 03:17, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
One of the primary rules for good editing is to abide by WP:NPOV in articles that clearly have divergent points of view.Davidbena (talk) 03:27, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

Your summary of the anthropic principle above is badly mistaken. The anthropic principle is an "explanation" (accept it or not) for why all the parameters seem to be finely tuned. It is not an explanation from design, but from statistics. Zerotalk 04:10, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

Still, User:Zero0000, it is used as one of the three "corollaries" by ID theorists in support for their theory, attributing it, of course, unto Intelligent design, and just as it is explained in this German web-page: [7] (use Google translation). It is also worthy of pointing out the fact that the ID theory is not only a scientific argument raised by some scientists (the more notable of whom being Albert Einstein), but it is also a philosophical argument mentioned by Maimonides and by Thomas Aquinas and by Sir Isaac Newton. See also this: [8]. Shabbat Shalom. Davidbena (talk) 04:29, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
Sir Isaac Newton
Painting of Sir Isaac Newton

The immortal words of Sir Isaac Newton:


“How came the bodies of animals to be contrived with so much art, and for what ends were their several parts? Was the eye contrived without skill in Opticks, and the ear without knowledge of sounds?...and these things being rightly dispatch’d, does it not appear from phænomena that there is a Being incorporeal, living, intelligent...?”


“Gravity explains the motions of the planets, but it cannot explain who sets the planets in motion.”


“This most beautiful system of the sun, planets and comets, could only proceed from the counsel and dominion of an intelligent and powerful Being.”

I would like to cordially request an opinion from the professed "deist," User:Amire80. I think that he will be able to give us some good advice on how to proceed in this endeavor.Davidbena (talk) 05:22, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
Teleology can be another name for "Intelligent design," but its scope is too broad, while most people associate the name Intelligent design with the argument of design in our universe, whether from a philosophical or scientific-theoretical point of view. In this article there is a need for balance. That, and only that, is what I am striving for. The arguments are many in favor of the theory, and those - mind you - which have been stated by highly respected personages. Newton is just one of them, the father of modern physics. If his words seem to be too religious in nature, we can take it from Einstein's perspective, who was NOT a religious Jew.Davidbena (talk) 05:42, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
What exactly is the question? --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 07:08, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
My question, User:Amire80, is whether or not the article in Intelligent design is balanced in its description of the theory, and if it fits the description of being "pseudoscience" (as purported there), or can it be simply a scientific-theoretical view or philosophy? See also the discussion we've been having on this issue @ Talk:Intelligent design#Proposal to Change Introductory Lines of Article. There seems to be a lot of objections to my adding any new information to the article. So, my question to you would be, is the article balanced and reflects accurately the ID theory?Davidbena (talk) 12:47, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

Here is some reading. Zerotalk 09:59, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

Thanks, User:Zero0000. That is an excellent review of our subject-matter from a very good source.Davidbena (talk) 12:54, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
You are welcome. Incidentally, I have no intention of editing articles about this subject even though I am a qualified scientist (not in biology) and I know a lot about it. The question of how we can know if something is designed is a very good scientific question, but a large fraction of what is written about it is not scientific. In particular, I don't consider people like Behe and Dembski to be scientists; actually they are religious fundamentalists who have learned how to use the language of science in promoting their religion. They don't follow the evidence as scientists should; rather, they invent arguments against any evidence that doesn't fit their religious beliefs. It's a pity you don't see that. Zerotalk 13:48, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
Okay, I agree that Dr. Michael Behe isn't a scientist, but only a biochemist. But his only point in pressing the ID issue is to show extraordinary order and sequence and, perhaps, "thought" in all our biological entities and processes which, in his view, cannot have possibly evolved of themselves. I've already noted here that not all who espouse to the design theory have an ulterior "religious" motive, although this might indeed be the case of some. It's more complicated than that. The simple fact is that science has not satisfactorily explained some of the phenomena of our universe, as well as of life forms on our planet, basing most of its modern theories on Darwin's theory of "random" evolution, even though scientists have not found an unbroken chain of fossil evidence proving that all life forms evolved from a primordial cell until they reached perfection.Davidbena (talk) 15:52, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
Intelligent design is pseudoscience. It's not a science and not a philosophy. --Amir E. Aharoni (talk) 17:41, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
User:Amire80, Philosophy is defined as "the study of the fundamental nature of knowledge, reality, and existence, especially when considered as an academic discipline." Intelligent design is not limited, of course, to an academic discipline, and therefore it would still fit the description of a philosophical argument. Maimonides, one of Israel's greatest philosophers, has spoken about Intelligent design in his Guide for the Perplexed (Part II, chapter I; ibid., chapter XIX). Shavua tov!---Davidbena (talk) 19:35, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
"Biochemist" is a subset of "scientist"; what I was implying is that Behe does not think as a scientist when he writes about ID. The very reason for the existence of the DI is religious, and the idea of promoting the religion using the words of science instead of the words of religion is a very carefully designed(!) confidence trick. Second, every scientist believes that "science has not satisfactorily explained some of the phenomena of our universe", it is why they are scientists. However the progress of science in the past centuries is due to a move away from the "we don't know why molten rock comes out of the volcano, therefore it is caused by demons that are living under the volcano" type of reasoning. Behe's approach pushes us backwards towards ignorance. Zerotalk 05:39, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, User:Zero0000. I would say that Behe is more honest than most. He admits that in biology everything has either specific or multiple functions. Based on his observance, they show complexities that would suggest design. As a bio-chemist, he has every right to suggest that view and to show how he reached his conclusions. A theory, mind you, is an idea advanced - though not yet proven - but which has some logical foundation to it. There's no need for us to be afraid of the probability that the answer to the questions asked may lie in metaphysics. Behe's confidence may have also been spurred on by the simple fact that Darwin's theory of evolution has not yet been proven. If dinosaur bones have been so well-preserved, we would have likewise seen all the transitional stages of development for all species of animals on earth, but this is not the case.Davidbena (talk) 19:03, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
"Darwin's theory of evolution has not yet been proven" is just your personal opinion, it does not establish any fact for Wikipedia, since you are not a reliable source. The verdict of the scientific community is that evolution has been proven beyond any doubt, and there are plenty of reliable sources which affirm this fact to the satisfaction of WP:RS/AC requirements. So, you're obviously busy with propagating crank science and the warning received above is completely to the point. Take heed and desist from advocating crank science. Tgeorgescu (talk) 21:46, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
User:Tgeorgescu, you came late into this debate, and the "pseudoscience" warning is out-of-place since I have never yet, not even once, made an edit on the Intelligence design Page. I have only suggested what I thought would be constructive edits for this article on the ID Talk-page. I have also brought down reputable sources to show how these views are substantiated, and are not, as you say, "crank" science. But since it is a contentious issue, I would just assume desist altogether from pressing the scientific-theoretical side of ID, and just present it as a "philosophical argument." I see that you are a believer in God. Can you help me present ID as a philosophical argument, without our having to say anything about its scientific merits?Davidbena (talk) 13:15, 5 July 2015 (UTC)
ID simply means a pseudoscientific alternative for the scientific consensus in biology (namely that evolution theory is accurate). So, if you re-frame ID as a purely philosophical argument, it is no longer ID, instead it is the teleological argument. To be sure, evolution is agnostic about the existence of God. So there is no contradiction between believing that God originally created the world and that life developed through evolution. It is just that the watchmaker argument is no longer convincing, as far as it applies to complex biological organisms. We now have an explanation for their existence which complies with Occam's razor. It does not say that God does not exist, it simply says that a specific argument is not convincing. Tgeorgescu (talk) 14:59, 5 July 2015 (UTC)
There's only one problem, and that is, most international websites which discuss the subject of Intelligent design, call it by its proper name: Intelligent design, since teleology is a broader subject. The Intelligent Design (ID) theory asserts that there must be intelligent causes to explain the complex and information-rich structures of biology and that these causes are empirically detectable. It asserts that certain biological characteristics violate the Darwinian explanation of chance because they were probably designed. Design logically presupposes a designer, wherefore, the appearance of design in our universe, or in man, is seen by its proponents as evidence of the existence of a designer.Davidbena (talk) 15:11, 5 July 2015 (UTC)