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  #41  
Old 28 February 2007, 05:58 PM
Hubert Cumberdale
 
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Originally Posted by Ryda Wong, EBfCo. View Post
DNA? From whom? Linda Fiorentino?
I almost missed the Dogma reference. Nice one.
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  #42  
Old 28 February 2007, 08:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Admiraldinty View Post
It probably is just a point of theological terminology. However, I've been drinking the Kool-Aid for so long I don't even realize it anymore. But to be fair, I did say "connote" and not "denote."
No worries! I'm trying to learn. If I'm gonna get down in the pit with theologians, I doggone well need to learn their lingo.

re connotations, I was going to mention that "resurrection" can be stretched so far, it even can apply to disinterment, as in for legal purposes of a DNA check, or -- in the 1800's -- for illegal sale to a medical school. Burke and Hare were -- colloquially -- known as "resurrectionists."

But, Lord, Lord, that's the shame and joy of the English language! So much of what we say is context-dependent, but the poetry of it all is the richer for it. (And it makes punmanship into a true art!)

Admiraldinty and Jason13: is there a solid Biblical basis for Aquinas' conclusion about glorified bodies? I've never quite been able to get where he drew some of his conclusions.

For instance: he said (I believe) that angels "apport" from place to place. (Science fiction fans would say "teleport.") They don't need to move, as we do, through every intermediate point, because that would be wasteful. If an angel is needed at point X, the angel is simply there.

Okay... But then, why do angels have extent, appearance, physical force, or, for that matter, individual volition? These, too, are wasteful; if God has an idea of what should be, it simply "must be," without the absurdity of an independent agency.

See, this is my beef with the most advanced and abstruse theology: just about anything can be argued both ways, and there is no objective and independent means to determine which view is in error. You appeal to Aquinas...I appeal to Dante... I lose...

At very least, I should be able to ask for a Biblical justification, yes no?


Silas (is there a special place in hell for logical positivists?)
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  #43  
Old 01 March 2007, 01:43 AM
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I have asked previously, and am still waiting, for ANY sort of proof that the biblical Jesus even existed, regardless of how he was killed. There is absolutly no contemporary proof whatsoever.
There are writings about him by his followers within a generation of his death. Many of the figures known to us from the ancient world were similarly memorialized on paper only after their deaths.
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  #44  
Old 01 March 2007, 11:20 AM
KingDavid8 KingDavid8 is offline
 
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I have asked previously, and am still waiting, for ANY sort of proof that the biblical Jesus even existed, regardless of how he was killed. There is absolutly no contemporary proof whatsoever.
So should we also doubt that Julius Caesar and Alexander the Great existed? I can't "prove" they existed, though the evidence for their existence is similarly overwhelming.

I mean, we have far more evidence for Jesus' existence than we have for practically anyone else of His time or earlier (about 1000 pages during the century He lived, and many references from non-Christians who accept that He existed). While I don't blame anyone for doubting His resurrection, doubting His existence seems kinda silly to me. Especially since the people at the forefront of this movement seem to be people like Acharya S. and Brian Flemming and the late Marshall Gauvin, all of whom use clearly fabricated evidence to support their points.

David
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  #45  
Old 01 March 2007, 02:44 PM
matches
 
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Originally Posted by KingDavid8 View Post
So should we also doubt that Julius Caesar and Alexander the Great existed? I can't "prove" they existed, though the evidence for their existence is similarly overwhelming.

I mean, we have far more evidence for Jesus' existence than we have for practically anyone else of His time or earlier (about 1000 pages during the century He lived, and many references from non-Christians who accept that He existed). While I don't blame anyone for doubting His resurrection, doubting His existence seems kinda silly to me. Especially since the people at the forefront of this movement seem to be people like Acharya S. and Brian Flemming and the late Marshall Gauvin, all of whom use clearly fabricated evidence to support their points.

David
The real physical evidence of Jesus existing is limited and arguably circumstantial. This is mostly due to the fact that at the time of Jesus's life he was not a person of importance or interest to anyone with the possible exception of the Priests of Jeruselam. Since Jesus was just another rabel rouser at a time when rabel rousers were routinely delt with, it is unlikely that a great deal of ink was wasted on the details of the case.

What is documented is that within a hundred years of Jesus's presumed death and resurection, his followers had created a powerful and popular mythos that did stand in opposition to many people in power.

Given this fact, we do not see a great deal of people seeking to deny the existance of this profit at the time, mearly to discredit his followers. From their lack of questioning Jesus's existance we can infer that his eistance was probably well accepted and established orally without a great deal of inconsistancies with which to attack.

A similar argument is used against holocaust deniers. If it had really not happened, wouldn't a contemporary at nueremburg have used this fact as their defense? As no one denied the holocaust there, it is logical to presume that it did infact exist, and the evidence was not manufactured.

Likewise, with Jesus. Since the denial of a physical historical person named Jesus who was a prophet in first century CE Isreal is a realativly modern invention, or at least something that began long after the establishment of the story at the end of the First Century CE.

Although there are other possibilities about Jesus (such as more than one person including John the Baptist took on the name and mantel), given the nature of the stories that existed at the time, it seems morelikely than not that a single person is the origin of the story of Jesus. Whether or not he was born in Bethleham to a Virgin is another story entriely, but the man probably existed, and was probably put to death for distrubing the peace, simply because we don't see these ideas questioned until much much later.
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  #46  
Old 01 March 2007, 03:07 PM
matches
 
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Originally Posted by Silas Sparkhammer View Post
No worries! I'm trying to learn. If I'm gonna get down in the pit with theologians, I doggone well need to learn their lingo.

.....

Admiraldinty and Jason13: is there a solid Biblical basis for Aquinas' conclusion about glorified bodies? I've never quite been able to get where he drew some of his conclusions.
Here's the official statement on glorified bodies: http://www.newadvent.org/summa/5085.htm

There are biblical quotes offered, but obviously there is always a great deal of interpretation to be found in their reading.

As I recall from Catholic Faith Class here's the short run down on the Glorified bodies concept:

The RCC belives that man is both Body and Spirit, and neither is the complete man without the other. This seperates man from the angels in that our material eistance is the same as that of animals, plants, the earth ect., but with a spiritual existance as well. Angels by contrast are pure spirit with no material existance. They are still able to interact with the material world, they themselves are imaterial.

Since one must have their physical body at resurection, it stands to reason that this body will need to be reformed. Likewise, it wouldn't make sense for this body to have all the various physical maladies you had at the time of death, so it makes sense that these would all be repaired. Likewise, since you will be going from a being of pure spirit back to being a creature of matter and spirit, it makes sense that you will still maintain all the abilities and advantages you had when you were a being of pure spirit.

Some odd realities about these glorified bodies, we will appearently still be able to, and desire to eat.

We know this because the first thing Jesus asks when he returns to the apostles is, give me something to eat.

One presumes that Jesus was not simply a Zombie as he didn't specificly ask for brains.
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  #47  
Old 01 March 2007, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by matches View Post
One presumes that Jesus was not simply a Zombie as he didn't specificly ask for brains.
Now that's a movie I'd pay to see!
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  #48  
Old 03 March 2007, 09:57 PM
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Originally Posted by KingDavid8 View Post
So should we also doubt that Julius Caesar and Alexander the Great existed? I can't "prove" they existed, though the evidence for their existence is similarly overwhelming.
...Especially since the people at the forefront of this movement seem to be people like Acharya S. and Brian Flemming and the late Marshall Gauvin, all of whom use clearly fabricated evidence to support their points.

David
Again, I ask. Name one reliable, contempory, historical account that mentions Jesus.
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  #49  
Old 04 March 2007, 02:44 AM
KingDavid8 KingDavid8 is offline
 
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Again, I ask. Name one reliable, contempory, historical account that mentions Jesus.
None, just as with most people who existed at that time and earlier. There's nothing unusual about that.

David
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  #50  
Old 04 March 2007, 05:06 AM
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Again, I ask. Name one reliable, contempory, historical account that mentions Jesus.
You will have to define for me first how you are using the terms "reliable" and "contemporary."
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  #51  
Old 04 March 2007, 03:20 PM
KingDavid8 KingDavid8 is offline
 
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You will have to define for me first how you are using the terms "reliable" and "contemporary."
I'm assuming that by "contemporary", he means anything written while Jesus was walking around, and we have nothing like that. But just about all we have from the 1st century are historical texts that were written well after the events they describe. Assuming Jesus really preached for three years and was crucified (as practically all historians agree), about the only things written during that era which might have mentioned Jesus would perhaps be notes taken by followers, or some sort of Roman record of His crucifixion. The problem is that we wouldn't expect such notes to survive 2000 years, and we know for a fact that no Roman records of who was crucified have survived 2000 years, except for those mentioned by historians well after the fact. We can safely say that we have no "contemporary" records (meaning anything written while the victim was still alive, or even just after they died) of anyone crucified by Rome, so the fact that we have no such records for Jesus isn't unusual, and can't be taken as evidence against His existence.

But we have tons of records mentioning Jesus that do date to the first century (just not while He was walking around), and several references to Him by non-Christians over the 2 or 3 centuries after, which show that while these historians weren't persuaded that He was the messiah, they never questioned the fact that He existed. People didn't really start questioning Jesus' existence until about the 19th century.

David
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  #52  
Old 04 March 2007, 07:11 PM
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One presumes that Jesus was not simply a Zombie as he didn't specificly ask for brains.
Except metaphorically, according to some.

An op-ed piece in today's St. Louis Post-Dispatch on the original topic carries the headline, "Was Jesus a Family Man? No Way, Josť!" It seems to me that there's a great deal of overlap between those who are most offended at the notion that Jesus might not have led a 100% celibate life and those who insist that the nuclear family is the only lifestyle consistent with Christianity. Now, if Jesus were really pro-family, don't you think he'd, like, have one?
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  #53  
Old 05 March 2007, 03:18 AM
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Well, that was one of the biggest scientific messes I've seen in ages.

I admit, I'm not an archaeologist. Can't read a lick of Hebrew, Latin, or anything like that, but the science I do know was screaming during the entire show.

Why?

Spoilers below if you didn't see it yet. Spoilers below if you didn't see it yet. Spoilers below if you didn't see it yet. Spoilers below if you didn't see it yet. Spoilers below if you didn't see it yet. Spoilers below if you didn't see it yet. Spoilers below if you didn't see it yet. Spoilers below if you didn't see it yet. Spoilers below if you didn't see it yet. Spoilers below if you didn't see it yet.

That should be enough.

Worst was when they tried doing a chemical analysis of the patination on the various ossuaries. They find a NMR spectrum of the James ossuary, with huge amounts of titanium, iron and magnesium, and try to match it to the ossuaries from the "Jesus tomb". Well, if you looked close, the spectra they showed weren't even close. Calcium was the only match, and that's because Jerusalem is built on, you guessed it, LIMESTONE.

Yet, they say how this is an amazing find and proof of their theory. Proof? The only thing that matched was a basic environmental element, nothing more. None of the super-key trace metals.

This was the first time I have ever seen a documentary outright ignore their own negative evidence, claiming it to be positive.

Going further, they did a mitochondrial DNA analysis of the ossuaries to find any genetic linkages. Ignoring the fact that mitochondrial only shows maternal links, not paternal, they concluded that since the "Magdalene" ossuary wasn't the same lineage, that it must be the ossuary of the Magdalene. Only problem is, what if that person were an inlaw? Previous marriage of the father? Cousin?

Much was made of the name of one of the Josephs listed- it was written as Jose. The claim was that since this name was mentioned once as a brother of Jesus, that this person must be that one. Yet, if the background idea is true and names on ossuaries were meant only for family to read, why wouldn't a nickname show up? I wouldn't use my dad's full name, my grandma isn't buried under hers, so why would everyone in 1st Century Jerusalem be?

The whole thing smacked of being staged, with a key bit of evidence vanishing, and the entire "expedition" being stopped by the authorities just as there was a chance of a conclusion.

While I'd love to see a competent crew do the work, this missed the mark by a league or two.
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  #54  
Old 05 March 2007, 03:30 AM
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Originally Posted by KingDavid8 View Post
. . . Assuming Jesus really preached for three years and was crucified (as practically all historians agree) . . .
I'm sorry to be such a pest, but I really can't let you get away with that. Practically all historians do *not* agree. They simply allow the premise to go by unchallenged, as there is no strong reason not to agree. They allow the most slender of reeds of evidence to suffice, simply because there is nothing else upon which to base any other conclusion.

You might just as well say that "practially all historians agree" that there was a place called "Atlantis," since Plato refers to it in his writings.

Silas
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  #55  
Old 05 March 2007, 11:14 AM
KingDavid8 KingDavid8 is offline
 
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I'm sorry to be such a pest, but I really can't let you get away with that. Practically all historians do *not* agree. They simply allow the premise to go by unchallenged, as there is no strong reason not to agree. They allow the most slender of reeds of evidence to suffice, simply because there is nothing else upon which to base any other conclusion.

You might just as well say that "practially all historians agree" that there was a place called "Atlantis," since Plato refers to it in his writings.

Silas

Okay, let me change that to "practically all historians who have offered their opinion on the subject agree". Basically, the vast majority of even non-Christian historians who have weighed in on the subject at least agree that Jesus lived, preached and was crucified. Only a small minority have argued that He never existed.

And it really isn't "the most slender of reeds of evidence". We have more for Jesus than we have for practically anyone else of that era, even from non-Christian sources. Yes, if we have only a handful of reliable texts saying so-and-so existed, then historians assume that the person existed unless there is evidence to the contrary. But should historians be doing otherwise?

And even taking the Biblical writings, a belief that physical laws cannot be violated is good cause to reject the walking on water, the resurrection, etc. it's not good cause to suppose that the very subject of the stories is a complete fabrication. They're clearly talking about *someone*, and there is little justification (and zero evidence) for the idea that this someone is a fictional character, or a person other than one Jesus of Nazareth.

David
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  #56  
Old 05 March 2007, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by KingDavid8 View Post
Okay, let me change that to "practically all historians who have offered their opinion on the subject agree". Basically, the vast majority of even non-Christian historians who have weighed in on the subject at least agree that Jesus lived, preached and was crucified. Only a small minority have argued that He never existed.
Good enough. I'm sorry to be such a nitpicker.

Quote:
And it really isn't "the most slender of reeds of evidence". We have more for Jesus than we have for practically anyone else of that era, even from non-Christian sources. Yes, if we have only a handful of reliable texts saying so-and-so existed, then historians assume that the person existed unless there is evidence to the contrary. But should historians be doing otherwise?
Historians should be saying, "We aren't sure," and "there isn't enough evidence to determine anything conclusively." One problem in this is that we don't have a well-defined "null hypothesis." It would be just as silly to default to the notion that Jesus did live, preach, and die on the cross as it would be to default to the notion that he didn't.

A lot of people lived, preached, and died on the cross. It was a violent period on a rebellious frontier under a tyrannical empire. There is no reason to say that Jesus didn't live in that era...but there is also no reason to say that Immodius Castoroil Constipans, a Thracian tribune of the Ninth Legion, didn't live in that era. (Except, of course, that I just made him up...)

It is only slightly less likely that Jesus was made up than that he was real; the evidence is just too little.

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And even taking the Biblical writings, a belief that physical laws cannot be violated is good cause to reject the walking on water, the resurrection, etc. it's not good cause to suppose that the very subject of the stories is a complete fabrication. They're clearly talking about *someone*, and there is little justification (and zero evidence) for the idea that this someone is a fictional character, or a person other than one Jesus of Nazareth.
Agreed, and, believe me, I don't use that specific argument. At worst I will say that exaggeration in one part of a story makes it important that we study the rest of the story with great care. We know that some of the stories of the Roman Emperors were exaggerated by their political enemies; this doesn't lead us to say, "Nero never lived," but it does make us ask, "How sturdy is the evidence that he deliberately arranged the great Roman fire?"

Silas
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  #57  
Old 05 March 2007, 11:21 PM
KingDavid8 KingDavid8 is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Silas Sparkhammer View Post

Historians should be saying, "We aren't sure," and "there isn't enough evidence to determine anything conclusively." One problem in this is that we don't have a well-defined "null hypothesis." It would be just as silly to default to the notion that Jesus did live, preach, and die on the cross as it would be to default to the notion that he didn't.

A lot of people lived, preached, and died on the cross. It was a violent period on a rebellious frontier under a tyrannical empire.
Interesting that you sound pretty sure of that, considering that you just said that there isn't enough evidence to determine anything conclusively. Maybe nobody really lived, preached and died on the cross. Maybe it wasn't a violent period on a rebellious frontier. But, yes, what little evidence we have from that era says that these things are true, and historians who have weighed in on the subject would generally (probably unanimously) agree that those things are true. If the evidence is strongly in favor of such-and-such being true, and there is no evidence to the contrary (or valid reason to doubt the evidence), then I think it's perfectly reasonable to say "it's true" even in the absence of 100% conclusive evidence.

And that's why I would say "it's true" that Jesus lived, preached, and died on the cross, even though I can't say it with 100% certainty (I'd say I'm over 99% convinced He preached and was crucified, and about 85-90% convinced He was resurrected). In fact, I'm willing to bet that we have more evidence for Jesus dying on the cross than we have for any other trouble-maker that we "know" died on the cross. Perhaps even more than for all of the others combined.

Quote:
There is no reason to say that Jesus didn't live in that era...but there is also no reason to say that Immodius Castoroil Constipans, a Thracian tribune of the Ninth Legion, didn't live in that era. (Except, of course, that I just made him up...)
Which is good enough evidence for me that ol' Immodius probably didn't live in that era (even though I love his name - was his wife named Incontinentia, perchance?). But it's hard to compare someone for whom there is no historical evidence to someone for whom there is lots. For most historians, any evidence of existence leads to an assumption that an individual existed unless there is also evidence, or valid reasoning, to the contrary.

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It is only slightly less likely that Jesus was made up than that he was real; the evidence is just too little.
Actually, the evidence is pretty overwhelming. Even if we completely discount anything coming from Christian sources, we still have plenty of historical evidence for Jesus, more than we have for just about anyone else, in non-Christian sources, such as Josephus (though one of his two references to Jesus was later interpolated), Pliny, Tacitus, Lucian and Celsus. I also think that many skeptics go a bit overboard in automatically writing off anything coming from Christian sources. Were the Christian writers biased? Of course they were, but it's hard to imagine how they would have become so biased if they knew, as many of them almost certainly had to have, that the person they were putting their faith in, even abandoning some precepts of the religion of their fathers for, never existed. Many Christian documents were written within 35 years of the events they describe. While that might be enough time to invent some things about Jesus, I don't see it as being enough time to invent Jesus altogether. If they weren't talking about Jesus, then who were they talking about? Do you really think it's only slightly less likely that they were following nobody, than they were following someone they truly admired, just a bit too enthusiastically?

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At worst I will say that exaggeration in one part of a story makes it important that we study the rest of the story with great care. We know that some of the stories of the Roman Emperors were exaggerated by their political enemies; this doesn't lead us to say, "Nero never lived," but it does make us ask, "How sturdy is the evidence that he deliberately arranged the great Roman fire?"
And I think that's a completely reasonable approach. Yet many people do exactly the opposite, say that because they can't believe Jesus walked on water, etc., that He must not have existed.

David
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  #58  
Old 06 March 2007, 02:01 AM
Rabbititus Rabbititus is offline
 
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I recall reading that the lack of written records from immediately after Jesus' death might have been the result of his followers thinking he would return within their lifetimes. It wasn't until the original follwers started dying off and the notion that Jesus might not come back right away sank in that that anyone decided to write things down. After all, there's no need to write anything down if the world is going to potentially end tomorrow.

Anyone else ever hear of this idea?
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  #59  
Old 06 March 2007, 02:32 AM
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Sorry to break away from the conversation, but I just wanted to add something.

While watching the film on the Discovery Channel yesterday (3/4) it occured to me that (I think) in the bible it says Jesus will return again in 2,000 years (the second coming).

Well, here it is 2,000 years later and we find his bones (well, maybe. For the sake of argument, pretend for a minute they are).

So, if they are Jesus' bones, is the prophecy correct?
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  #60  
Old 06 March 2007, 03:07 AM
KingDavid8 KingDavid8 is offline
 
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Sorry to break away from the conversation, but I just wanted to add something.

While watching the film on the Discovery Channel yesterday (3/4) it occured to me that (I think) in the bible it says Jesus will return again in 2,000 years (the second coming).

Well, here it is 2,000 years later and we find his bones (well, maybe. For the sake of argument, pretend for a minute they are).

So, if they are Jesus' bones, is the prophecy correct?
No, there's nothing about Him returning in 2000 years. At best, this number is derived from the same kind of fudge-the-numbers games that "prove" that Barney the Dinosaur is the anti-Christ.

David
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