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Date Posted: 11:45
Author: Waqidi - 5 Jun 2001
Subject: Re: Burbank, Microfiche and Statistical Blunders
In reply to: Mike Drake - 4 Jun 2001 's message, "Burbank, Microfiche and Statistical Blunders" on 11:39

Dear Mike,

I have already conceded that established modern science knowledge does not support a companion star for the sun. My discussion concering dark matter and dark energy was in reference to your assertion that it is immpossible to postulate a phenomena that has a 24,000 year cycle that relates to a position of the sun with another body without our scientists seeing it already. I pointed out to you that the latest findings showing an accelerating universe that was until recently never noticed by astronomers. The forces involved in accelerating the entire "visible" mass of the universe are immense! So they are now forced to consider that these forces are coming from dark energy or dark matter. Please explain how you can be so sure of the Newtonian mechanics when it did not predict the acceleration of the bodies of the universe. Do you believe that there are no pertubation cycles for the sun? Certainly we live in a spiral galaxy with movement about a central axis. A pertubation cycle does not require a large movement but can be a subtle movement. Therefore, I think one can theorize that a dark matter star located within a few light years of the sun could cause a pertubation of the sun on a 24000 year cycle. However, I would agree that Sri Yukteswar never mentioned a dark matter star or that this was the basis of his explantion for the 24000 year cycle.

With regard to your statements about Burbank:

2.1 Agreed

2.2 There has been no prima facie evidence been presented by you that the article quoted by yourself and others on the web site is in fact true or even exists.

Let us say that you can produce the article which is written a few months before the death of Luther Burbank (he died on April 11, 1926), I would need to look at the nature of the article and who wrote it and whether there are witnesses cited in the article which could also be corroborated. (The article was written supposedly on January 22, 1926.)
So far what I have been able to find is scant. A search in a good library will no doubt turn up more material.

However, Yogananda's account of his friend in the "Autobiography of a Yogi" covers a span of at least four years from 1922 and to 1926 right up to Luther Burbank's death (Yogananda was not with him at the time.) At this point I would trust the account of Yogananda over the third hand account of a newspaper article that I cannot see. Further, you asked me what I would do if you could produce the article. I would have to wait and see the quality of the article. However, I see no reason to doubt the account of Yogananda who knew Burbank for many years and was his friend, over the claims of a newspaper account from an author with perhaps no long term relationship with Burbank. It is even conceivable that Burbank changed his views prior to his death and Yogananda was not aware of this.

You claim that Burbank had a long and enending history of being an atheist. However, you have not provided the "goods" to prove your point. We have on the other hand have the testimony of Yogananda who was a friend of Burbank for many years. Personally I trust Yogananda and see no reason why he should fabricate the views of Burbank.

2.3 I have the evidence from Yogananda. This is at least without question first hand information from someone who was a known friend of Luther Burbank. What is your proof? A hearsay account of a possible hearsay article. Show me more solid evidence that Burbank was an atheist all his life. The quality of your evidence is wanting. Further, one does not need to believe in God to believe in reincarnation. This is a traditional position of most Buddhists.

2.4 There is also a reference on the web to Burbank's views on religion (unstated) in the Theosophy Magazine that I think is interesting:

THEOSOPHY, Vol. 15, No. 6, April, 1927
(Pages 241-246; Size: 18K)
(Number 7 of a 13-part series)

"I HAVE not changed my views on immortality. The word 'God' has no meaning for me, but I believe there is a supreme intelligence pervading the universe."

Thus Thomas A. Edison on his eightieth birthday, February 11th. His views are essentially identical with those of Lincoln, whose religion is still subject of vast dispute, and this despite the known facts as recorded in his own writing. Luther Burbank's convictions on the same subject excited much discussion recently. And so with Henry Ford's and many other men of note of the generation -- in science, in business, in letters, and even in what is popularly regarded as the "Christian religion."

We can gather from this (if it in fact is accurate) that Burbank's views on religion were not traditional. However, it is unlikely in my view that the Theosophical Magazine would be looking at the writings of an atheist. So I would venture that Burbank's views were somewhat interesting from the Theosophical standpoint. Notice also his justaposition with Ford, Lincoln and Edison. Based on this inclusion in the Theosophical Magazine my instinct tells me that Burbank was not an atheist as you claim and as the article you quote from claims.

2.5 We are comparing the account of Yogananda as to the spiritual beliefs of Luther Burbank with the "evidence" that you have supplied. There is compelling evidence that Yoganana was a close friend of Luther Burbank. You Sir did not know Luther Burbank. You Sir did not know the author of the article you quote from. You Sir have not even proved that the article even was printed. You have not provided other supportive evidence to show that Luther Burbank was an atheist who did not believe in reincarnation. I wouldn't convict anyone on your evidence. And I am certainly not going to view Yogananda's account of his friend's view on spiriutal subjects as simply "made up", based on your flimsy "evidence" to date.


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