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Miracle Healing


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Hello everyone.  I am currently composing Part Two of my Deconversion Testimony, called my "Objections to Christianity".  The first part concerns miracle healing.  It is supposed to be relatively concise.   I would appreciate your thoughts, on content style and structure.  And also - it may spark a bit of discussion, who knows.

 

Miracle Healing

 

Many Christians believe that God intervenes in the world today to miraculously heal people.  Claims of miraculous healing were common among churchgoers during my time as a Christian.  I was persuaded by the earnestness and frequency of these claims into believing that they had occurred.  Whilst this might seem strange to a non-Christian, or anyone of a sceptical disposition, acceptance of such claims is not so strange when put against a backdrop of an existing belief in an all-powerful interventionist God.  My belief in God did not flow from believing miracle claims, but it was one of many factors that supported my belief in God.

 

Over time I became sceptical of healing claims.  I never saw any healing first hand, or saw any evidence other than anecdotal testimony that miracle healing had occurred.  Eventually my scepticism became total disbelief, and miracle healing claims were no longer a supporting factor in my belief in God.

 

Whole books have surely been written on this subject by people more knowledgeable than me.  I hope the reader will forgive the brevity of my explanation as to why I no longer believe the claims.

 

Type of Claims

Types of healing claims vary.  Examples of miracle healing that I have heard of the years include, but are not limited to:

·         simpler healings such as bones mending;

·         significant healing such as being healed of cancer;

·         extreme healings such as paraplegics regaining the ability to walk or the blind having sight restored;

·         outright bizarre such as legs, arms and eyeballs re-growing.

 

Distance, Time, and Third-Hand Accounts

Crucial to understanding the spread of miracle claims is the correlation between the significance of the supposed healing, and the distance in time and location from the place where it happened, the place where the story is being told.  Healings that happen within your church community tend to be less impressive: a broken leg heals quicker than expected; a person overcomes flu remarkably quickly and in time for a job interview; a person’s cancer goes into remission after extensive chemotherapy, even though doctors were not optimistic.

 

Healings that happen more remotely tend to be more impressive.  I heard several stories of cancerous tumours simply disappearing overnight, and doctors declaring it to be a miracle.  These stories were always about the relative of a friend of a friend; never someone I knew personally.

 

If you hear that someone’s amputated leg re-grew, it is more likely to be a story of an event that took place on a mission to a third-world African country.  Stories of limbs re-growing and people being raised from the dead are common among Christian evangelical churches, but they are only experienced by associated missionaries in far flung places where no-one could ever meet the healed person or verify the story.  Neither could the missionary witness.

 

There is an easy explanation for why larger miracles happen further away from the place they are told.  Most of us are familiar with the childhood game in which a message is whispered from child to child in a circle.  In Britain we call this game ‘Chinese whispers’ (perhaps insensitively); whereas Americans know the game as ‘telephone’.  With each retelling of the message, it is slightly distorted, until eventually it has morphed into something completely different.  It changes into a comical jumble of nonsense, in which maybe only one word has survived from the original message.

 

As well as being entertaining, the game teaches children a valuable lesson for life: that the more often a story is repeated, especially when retelling happen weeks or months apart, the more distorted from the truth it will become.  The principle is obvious even to children.  And yet, astonishingly, the logic seems lost to many Christians; who think it wise to report as fact anecdotes that have been subject to the same pressures of repetition.

 

Lakeland

The emptiness of spiritual healing claims was vividly demonstrated during the so-called “Lakeland Revival” in the summer of 2008.  A self proclaimed spiritual healer and revivalist named Todd Bentley whipped up a Christian media frenzy in Florida.  It was claimed that the Holy Spirit was pouring out healing upon large crowds, and people were being healed of all ailments from tumours, to paraplegia, to blindness.  There were even stories of resurrection.

 

Yet, no medical evidence was ever produced to verify the truth of any claims of healing or resurrection.  Not one single example.

 

Furthermore, despite the fact that the revival was being broadcast worldwide every day for over a month, not one single observable miracle was ever filmed on camera.  You can go to Youtube right now, and search for examples of healing at Lakeland.  You will see absolutely no evidence of healing taking place.  And yet, I can guarantee without a shadow of a doubt, that there are tens of thousands of Christians alive today who, having watched exactly the same footage that you observe, will have been convinced that genuine supernatural healing took place in Lakeland.

 

It is also a particularly damning demonstration of the falseness of miracle healing claims across the world that, despite the explosion in video camera availability in the last decade, God has still not allowed a miracle to take place on camera.  Why is he so shy to reveal his power to the world?  Why must his demonstrations of power be confined to a select few witnesses who can never be traced, or whose claims can never be verified?

 

Conclusion

Claims of spiritual healing are never verifiable by medical science, they are never recorded on video, and they tend to be more exaggerated if the event happened further away from you in distance and time, and if the story already has been passed by word of mouth a few times.

 

I stopped believing miracle claims shortly after the Lakeland Revival.  My scepticism had grown to the point where I would no longer believe any claims of miracle healing absent hard evidence that I could test.  To do otherwise would to be gullible.  At the time I believed that to attribute false claims of healing to God was blasphemous and an abandonment of the powers of reason God gave us.  Now, I simply think it is an abandonment of reason.

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Christianity broke my brain, and the disparity between what the Bible says and what we experience/observie in reality is one of the last straws that broke this camel's back.

 

True--there is no verifiable evidence. A friend of mine was a charismatic, evangelical missionary in an African country. She saw some interesting things, but nothing beyond minor that didn't revert to its usual state once the adrenalin wore off. Pretty disappointing. It seems God's ability to pull off miracles seems to have atrophied over time: from flooding the earth or parting seas, to merely finding the odd believer a parking spot.

 

God did not heal me of a simple medical condition that prevented me from coming to church. Not even getting a break to go once in a while! Christians could not explain why God "won't let me come to church", other than maybe I'd sinned. Yup, they know how to kick you when you're down!

 

Christianity has had me on a wild goose chase for decades, running hither and yon for the touch of God. I have since healed myself, thank you very much. But the search for healing that does not exist is enough to make anyone nuts.

 

This is me looking for a miracle: Wendycrazy.gifvent.gif

 

Me as an atheist: smile.png

 

Christianity broke my brain!

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Well, Positivist, I glad you were able to fix your brain by yourself. It's obviously in excellentcondition now.bill

I'm just glad I didn't go right off the rails mentally. I let go of the self-harm and self-hatred of Christianity in time to save portions of my sanity, but not before it had chewed away some of it. Gawd, the miracle crap is such rubbish. I can't believe I fell for it!

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Guest r3alchild

The reason why billions of people with cameras don't capture anything god does is because their god does not exist. Its simple deduction, if their god is in fact real he would be leaving foot prints everwhere and the only reason there were so many miracles in the ot day is that that time lived in obscurity and things are harder to be verified.

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I stopped believing in miracles partly cause my mother was never healed.There were things she needed to do (like stop stressing out as much and take better care of herself),but some of the things,God could have totally healed her and made her life so much easier.She has what she calls "female problems",a skin condition and some other issues partly from her husband cheating on her and being abusive.There's no reason for God to not heal her of that,especially since it was because of her husband's "sins".And he was a class A jerk,don't even have to think about the issue of "sin" to know that.

She's gotten prayer over and over and over again for years and years.She says she gets a little better sometimes.I honestly think it's mostly cause of touch.I think touch is very healing,especially when coming from a person who means well.

I also noticed that I would just sometimes get a tiny bit better when prayed for,and it was probably touch too.It's my love language,and when I was going through a hard time,I actually would go sit in the soaking chairs just so I could have someone's hand on my shoulder.That was one of the reasons why I realized prayer doesn't work.

 

People have said that she isn't healed yet cause she needs to repent,cause she needs more faith,cause sometimes you have to just keep pressing in.Some people won't believe she has health problems,even as she's falling down cause of a condition she has,because when they pray she won't be healed.

Also,the church kinda kicked her out,cause she wouldn't follow rules..Ok,my mom can be a pill...but thing is,she's very similar to most of the people there.Probably why they wanted her out,being hypocrites.The rules were,she wasn't allowed to be outside during the sermon.She has a breathing problem and needs to be outside a lot.All she was doing was sitting in a secluded place outside.Plus,why is it any of their business?If she had a car,she could have sat in it or gone home.But she doesn't.And they were all like,you either come if you feel well enough or don't come.

And then they said they would pray for her and she would be healed if she followed all the rules...

There were other rules.One or two of them were fine,but the rest were kinda insane...

 

And then how people would praise the lord for healing someone when it was clearly just the person getting better or taking medicine.

They also blamed demons for illnesses....which causes even more problems.

 

I remember a lot of times minor healings were made a bit deal of,or people would force "you're healed" on people when they really weren't.

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Miracle cures and healers have been thoroughly debunked for decades now. That hasn't stopped millions from continuing to believe in magic. The need to believe the improbable apparently is strong, accepting reality at face value isn't nearly as much fun.

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Why doesn't god heal amputees?

 

best site ever for this question.

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I'm not too far from Lakeland. And yes, there's quite a bit of religious fanaticism going around in central Florida. The whole thing was obviously bullshit. And I think it's funny when religious leaders cling to this type of bullshit and stamp it as divine, when, in the end the whole thing turns out to be a house of cards built upon sand foundations. 

 

In a way I wish that there were some real truth to faith healing and what-have-you. Wouldn't it be great to heal the sick, make the crippled walk, give hearing to the deaf and cause the blind to see? 

 

But as MC Ice-T would say: "....shit ain't like that. It's real fucked up!" lol

 

*for the gen-Xer's out there privy to Body Count.... 

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Hello

I have not read other people's replies, so apologize if I repeat someone,  but i will share my thoughts. It is not going to be a nodding in agreement post. This topic is a single issue that bothers me to this day.

And it has to do with miraculous healing.

Her name is Euginia Polishuk, she's Ukrainian, and I am too for the record. This is the Only miracle story that is giving me trouble to forget christianity. Here's why.

Her miracle healing happened instanteneously. It was observed by a roomful of people. Now, I'm skipping ahead of myself.

Eugenia Polishuk, from her own words as I interviewed her twice, developed some kind of spine problem from hard manual labor in Ukraine in her late teens. It progressed to the point she could not walk. She had to lay in bed. Good hospitals in Soviet Ukraine tried to fix her problem for two years. Finally she was not helped and was sent home to basically die. The young woman lay in bed for total 4 years and 7 months. The bone disease, I can only guess it was arthritis of some kind crooked her body to the point her knees touched her chin. She was spoonfed for last years. And now the miracle.

Dmitry Berezyuk, whom I visited in Ukraine twice too, was a powerful healer as people regarded him in 1970s. He went to see Euginia and it happened that a room full of people was there. By the way, I have met two people who visited Euginia before she was healed, and they confirmed that she was bed struck and in bad conditioned when they saw her. I have not interviewed or met others that were supposedly in the room when the miracle happened. So, by the account of both Euginia and Dmitry, when Dmitry prayed for her, she suddenly sprang up from the bed (so he had to catch her) and the two say that her bones were cracking. The full miracle happened in the manner of minutes. Dmitry says he watched Euginia's leg veins fill up with blood, as blood travelled down from hips to toes, since she lay in bed for so long and had little blood circulation. According to the both, Euginia started walking the same evening, and had dinner for the first time (i don't know in how long) since she was spoon fed.
So I don't know. I talked to the healed, and I talked to the healer, to both on two occasions, and as a skeptic. I am myself very uninterested in the actual healing to be true because everything else in my worldview aligns with atheism nowdays. But I gotta be honest, I know what I do.
If anyone is interested in the miracle, or to talk with the healed, I'm interested to do something. I am vested in discrediting the story, if not to anyone then to myself. Euginia Polishuk is in her 60s now, she lives in US in the city of Kent, WA. This is about 40 minute drive from where I live. Dmitry Berezyuk lives in Kostopol, Ukraine, I went to see him in Feb or this year. Granted there's a language barrier. I took an non ukrainian with me last time and translated to them. I could do translation if anyone is interested to listen.
In terms of documentation, this part is lacking seriously. The only evidence is the first hand witnesses themselves, the healed and the healer. One surviving evidence is the photo of Eugine laying in bed in what appears crooked position and a photocopy of a medical document that says "General Illness", Someone did investigation to build up the case and contacted her hospital in Ukraine, turned out the documents were lost due to some fire. There's good explanation to the lacking documentation, that in Soviet Ukraine Christians were severly tracked and prosecuted and authorities wanted to silence the healing.
Anyway that's all I got. An account from first hand witnesses of what appears to be a major healing.
All the best

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More of the same - Christians for witnesses, mysteriously missing medical records for verification, having to take biased people at their word, etc. etc. This summarizes the all around problem with faith healing outlined in the thread.

 

And what's more is that even if you were to grant that the woman was healed in a puzzling way there's still a whole range of possible reasons for how that could have happened. All of these cases are mind oriented and when people get together under the guise of belief their minds are all focused on something or another. Prayer is just that, human mind activity directed in specific types of focus.

 

So supernatural beings and forces are never really the automatic default position even in the cases strange and mysterious medical healing. Or even something the opposite like curses for that matter - some one directing ill-intended thoughts and willing it towards others. 

 

This type of thing doesn't do much for me in terms of questioning the possibility of Christianity as some how valid. I know too much about Biblical errancy and contradiction to even entertain the idea that maybe the Bible is right. If miracles do happen, then their must be some other explanation...

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Hello

I have not read other people's replies, so apologize if I repeat someone,  but i will share my thoughts. It is not going to be a nodding in agreement post. This topic is a single issue that bothers me to this day.

And it has to do with miraculous healing.

Her name is Euginia Polishuk, she's Ukrainian, and I am too for the record. This is the Only miracle story that is giving me trouble to forget christianity. Here's why.

Her miracle healing happened instanteneously. It was observed by a roomful of people. Now, I'm skipping ahead of myself.

Eugenia Polishuk, from her own words as I interviewed her twice, developed some kind of spine problem from hard manual labor in Ukraine in her late teens. It progressed to the point she could not walk. She had to lay in bed. Good hospitals in Soviet Ukraine tried to fix her problem for two years. Finally she was not helped and was sent home to basically die. The young woman lay in bed for total 4 years and 7 months. The bone disease, I can only guess it was arthritis of some kind crooked her body to the point her knees touched her chin. She was spoonfed for last years. And now the miracle.

Dmitry Berezyuk, whom I visited in Ukraine twice too, was a powerful healer as people regarded him in 1970s. He went to see Euginia and it happened that a room full of people was there. By the way, I have met two people who visited Euginia before she was healed, and they confirmed that she was bed struck and in bad conditioned when they saw her. I have not interviewed or met others that were supposedly in the room when the miracle happened. So, by the account of both Euginia and Dmitry, when Dmitry prayed for her, she suddenly sprang up from the bed (so he had to catch her) and the two say that her bones were cracking. The full miracle happened in the manner of minutes. Dmitry says he watched Euginia's leg veins fill up with blood, as blood travelled down from hips to toes, since she lay in bed for so long and had little blood circulation. According to the both, Euginia started walking the same evening, and had dinner for the first time (i don't know in how long) since she was spoon fed.

So I don't know. I talked to the healed, and I talked to the healer, to both on two occasions, and as a skeptic. I am myself very uninterested in the actual healing to be true because everything else in my worldview aligns with atheism nowdays. But I gotta be honest, I know what I do.

If anyone is interested in the miracle, or to talk with the healed, I'm interested to do something. I am vested in discrediting the story, if not to anyone then to myself. Euginia Polishuk is in her 60s now, she lives in US in the city of Kent, WA. This is about 40 minute drive from where I live. Dmitry Berezyuk lives in Kostopol, Ukraine, I went to see him in Feb or this year. Granted there's a language barrier. I took an non ukrainian with me last time and translated to them. I could do translation if anyone is interested to listen.

In terms of documentation, this part is lacking seriously. The only evidence is the first hand witnesses themselves, the healed and the healer. One surviving evidence is the photo of Eugine laying in bed in what appears crooked position and a photocopy of a medical document that says "General Illness", Someone did investigation to build up the case and contacted her hospital in Ukraine, turned out the documents were lost due to some fire. There's good explanation to the lacking documentation, that in Soviet Ukraine Christians were severly tracked and prosecuted and authorities wanted to silence the healing.

Anyway that's all I got. An account from first hand witnesses of what appears to be a major healing.

All the best

 

This story has zero effect on me, and I will not even say that I respect your thoughts on the matter.  You did not see this yourself; you have heard from people with a vested interest or confirmation bias in believing the story.  Until you see medical documentation proving a drastic and otherwise unexplainable phenomena, then "miracle" should not even be entertained in your thoughts.

 

Much less should I accept it, because I am just another step removed.

 

Your story is no more persuasive to me than "Mark"'s account of miracles performed by Jesus.

 

But I would say this.  Some Christian might read this story on the internet; and then might tell it to a friend, who tells it to a pastor, who then tells the story in a church.  By which point - how many steps are we removed from the event?  The subject - the witness - you - the internet reader - the friend - the pastor - the congregation.  And yet - when the congregation hear it from the pastor, they assume it must be true!

 

The travesty of Lakeland is that it was largely on film.  We could actually literally see that there were no visible changes taking place.  And yet still people believe it because they suffer from chronic confirmation bias.

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One of the MANY things that helped push me over the cliff into my crisis of faith was when a sweet little  boy from our charismatic church died of leukemia after several years of fervent prayer by hundreds on his behalf.  Several months after his death, our pastor had a sermon on healing and faith.  I was sitting beside the grandparents of this little boy and during the whole sermon the grandmother kept silently crying.  Out of the corner of my eye I could see her wiping her eyes and nose, while her husband just held her hand. I felt so bad for them and the rest of her family, and it was pretty much after that that I concluded that God really doesn't answer prayer, the promises in the Bible for healing are a bunch of baloney, and if there really is a Bible God that he is either a lying sadist or not truly involved in the affairs of men. 

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Hello

I have not read other people's replies, so apologize if I repeat someone,  but i will share my thoughts. It is not going to be a nodding in agreement post. This topic is a single issue that bothers me to this day.

And it has to do with miraculous healing.

Her name is Euginia Polishuk, she's Ukrainian, and I am too for the record. This is the Only miracle story that is giving me trouble to forget christianity. Here's why.

Her miracle healing happened instanteneously. It was observed by a roomful of people. Now, I'm skipping ahead of myself.

Eugenia Polishuk, from her own words as I interviewed her twice, developed some kind of spine problem from hard manual labor in Ukraine in her late teens. It progressed to the point she could not walk. She had to lay in bed. Good hospitals in Soviet Ukraine tried to fix her problem for two years. Finally she was not helped and was sent home to basically die. The young woman lay in bed for total 4 years and 7 months. The bone disease, I can only guess it was arthritis of some kind crooked her body to the point her knees touched her chin. She was spoonfed for last years. And now the miracle.

Dmitry Berezyuk, whom I visited in Ukraine twice too, was a powerful healer as people regarded him in 1970s. He went to see Euginia and it happened that a room full of people was there. By the way, I have met two people who visited Euginia before she was healed, and they confirmed that she was bed struck and in bad conditioned when they saw her. I have not interviewed or met others that were supposedly in the room when the miracle happened. So, by the account of both Euginia and Dmitry, when Dmitry prayed for her, she suddenly sprang up from the bed (so he had to catch her) and the two say that her bones were cracking. The full miracle happened in the manner of minutes. Dmitry says he watched Euginia's leg veins fill up with blood, as blood travelled down from hips to toes, since she lay in bed for so long and had little blood circulation. According to the both, Euginia started walking the same evening, and had dinner for the first time (i don't know in how long) since she was spoon fed.

So I don't know. I talked to the healed, and I talked to the healer, to both on two occasions, and as a skeptic. I am myself very uninterested in the actual healing to be true because everything else in my worldview aligns with atheism nowdays. But I gotta be honest, I know what I do.

If anyone is interested in the miracle, or to talk with the healed, I'm interested to do something. I am vested in discrediting the story, if not to anyone then to myself. Euginia Polishuk is in her 60s now, she lives in US in the city of Kent, WA. This is about 40 minute drive from where I live. Dmitry Berezyuk lives in Kostopol, Ukraine, I went to see him in Feb or this year. Granted there's a language barrier. I took an non ukrainian with me last time and translated to them. I could do translation if anyone is interested to listen.

In terms of documentation, this part is lacking seriously. The only evidence is the first hand witnesses themselves, the healed and the healer. One surviving evidence is the photo of Eugine laying in bed in what appears crooked position and a photocopy of a medical document that says "General Illness", Someone did investigation to build up the case and contacted her hospital in Ukraine, turned out the documents were lost due to some fire. There's good explanation to the lacking documentation, that in Soviet Ukraine Christians were severly tracked and prosecuted and authorities wanted to silence the healing.

Anyway that's all I got. An account from first hand witnesses of what appears to be a major healing.

All the best

 

This story has zero effect on me, and I will not even say that I respect your thoughts on the matter.  You did not see this yourself; you have heard from people with a vested interest or confirmation bias in believing the story.  Until you see medical documentation proving a drastic and otherwise unexplainable phenomena, then "miracle" should not even be entertained in your thoughts.

 

Much less should I accept it, because I am just another step removed.

 

Your story is no more persuasive to me than "Mark"'s account of miracles performed by Jesus.

 

But I would say this.  Some Christian might read this story on the internet; and then might tell it to a friend, who tells it to a pastor, who then tells the story in a church.  By which point - how many steps are we removed from the event?  The subject - the witness - you - the internet reader - the friend - the pastor - the congregation.  And yet - when the congregation hear it from the pastor, they assume it must be true!

 

The travesty of Lakeland is that it was largely on film.  We could actually literally see that there were no visible changes taking place.  And yet still people believe it because they suffer from chronic confirmation bias.

 

With all due respect your evaluation of the story of the possible miracle I described is flawed.

I have first hand witnesses, it is not like Mark's account like you say. The difference is, Mark is dead, his account was written almost century after the events, no first hand witness can be contacted or interviewed. I am alive, the first hand witnesses are alive too. Anyone honestly interested to investigate the story is welcome to come to Euginia Polishuk and listen.

I admitted that documentation is lacking. What is there, are people who knew Euginia in her terrible condition before the healing, and also I was told some medical personnell in Ukraine that treated her.

This story will not convince a reader. But it is compelling to hear it from the healed herself. What makes it compelling?

Some facts from the story can be assumed correct. The fact that Euginia was laying in bed for 4 years, 7 months. The fact that she was spoonfed. The woman also has an artifact -- the dress so short it would fit a kindergardener, because her knees were touching her chest from the illness. Here is a link to the testimony http://iscelen.org/925-evgeniya-polishhuk.html

Now, after listening to her, you have to say either she's lying (and I rulled out that for myself, and to be fair, you have to investigate, at least come and interview her to rule out that she lied) or to find a natural explanation for immediate improvement in her health.

So in short you are doing no justice to the story. You obviously have already made decision to disregard it as a rumor. But if you are seriously writing  anti testimony to miracles, then you have to apply some journalistic skills and don't put this in the category of third-hand accounts.

 

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More of the same - Christians for witnesses, mysteriously missing medical records for verification, having to take biased people at their word, etc. etc. This summarizes the all around problem with faith healing outlined in the thread.

 

And what's more is that even if you were to grant that the woman was healed in a puzzling way there's still a whole range of possible reasons for how that could have happened. All of these cases are mind oriented and when people get together under the guise of belief their minds are all focused on something or another. Prayer is just that, human mind activity directed in specific types of focus.

 

So supernatural beings and forces are never really the automatic default position even in the cases strange and mysterious medical healing. Or even something the opposite like curses for that matter - some one directing ill-intended thoughts and willing it towards others. 

 

This type of thing doesn't do much for me in terms of questioning the possibility of Christianity as some how valid. I know too much about Biblical errancy and contradiction to even entertain the idea that maybe the Bible is right. If miracles do happen, then their must be some other explanation...

I'd love to find that other explanation. I sometimes like to think that "faith in healing" is another natural force that we have not discovered. I agree all other stuff about christianity doesn't square with me anymore. I just can't disregard the story as fabrication or minor natural cure. Just being honest with myself.

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I'd love to find that other explanation. I sometimes like to think that "faith in healing" is another natural force that we have not discovered. I agree all other stuff about christianity doesn't square with me anymore. I just can't disregard the story as fabrication or minor natural cure. Just being honest with myself.

I would guess an enhanced placebo effect.

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More of the same - Christians for witnesses, mysteriously missing medical records for verification, having to take biased people at their word, etc. etc. This summarizes the all around problem with faith healing outlined in the thread.

 

And what's more is that even if you were to grant that the woman was healed in a puzzling way there's still a whole range of possible reasons for how that could have happened. All of these cases are mind oriented and when people get together under the guise of belief their minds are all focused on something or another. Prayer is just that, human mind activity directed in specific types of focus.

 

So supernatural beings and forces are never really the automatic default position even in the cases strange and mysterious medical healing. Or even something the opposite like curses for that matter - some one directing ill-intended thoughts and willing it towards others. 

 

This type of thing doesn't do much for me in terms of questioning the possibility of Christianity as some how valid. I know too much about Biblical errancy and contradiction to even entertain the idea that maybe the Bible is right. If miracles do happen, then their must be some other explanation...

I'd love to find that other explanation. I sometimes like to think that "faith in healing" is another natural force that we have not discovered. I agree all other stuff about christianity doesn't square with me anymore. I just can't disregard the story as fabrication or minor natural cure. Just being honest with myself.

 

Let's refer to this youtube video footage of an Asian 'power of intention' mind based type of healing claim:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zr33voVMEic

 

Cancer cured in 3 minutes, eh? 

 

Now these guys either manipulated the presentation or it was real. I don't know which of the two are correct. They could have manipulated the footage.

 

But if we entertain these new age ideas and grant that because of the particle / wave duality of matter brain waves / thoughts and feelings can effect the material world, then we're looking at basically the same as faith healing completely devoid of Christianity, YHWH, angels, Jesus or any of it. All that was required was that the woman firmly believe that she could be healed along with a firm belief on the part of the three men setting their minds to 'feeling' the 'experience' of the woman already healed and well. They're chanting something to the effect of 'already healed.' 

 

The new age shit is about as questionable as Christianity of course, but I do leave open the possibility that the universe may well be an interconnected realm, the mind is probably part of that interconnected realm encompassing all matter, minds, and bodies, and that things that may seem miraculous at first glance can happen although there would be a completely scientific explanation for the seemingly miraculous. If our perception of physical reality can change physical reality (which is the claim in this new age video) in certain ways, then there you have it.... 

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Eugine may well have spontaneously recovered from her crippling illness. I certainly am not going to conclude that she lied without any evidence, but there is also no evidence for the healing. I am a bit like JoshPantera in that I suspect there may be some natural 'force' in the universe that people occasionally stumble upon giving rise to genuine, so-called supernatural recoveries. In the haystack of 'miracle' healing claims there are a few needles of healings that have a genuine ring to them.

 

However, as Positivist and others have well described, the practice of giving hope to people if they practice certain rituals and/or have some guru cast some incantation over them they WILL be healed. This almost always leads to disappointment, and far too many times leads to peoples 'brains being broken' (thanks for that one positivist!) along with their hearts. This is why I cringe at ANYONE promising healing. Medical doctors however provide odds of recovery based on research and experience but even they occasionally over-step the mark and get too optimistic about recovery, but that is rare. The story of those grieving grandparents hearing about gods healing power at church sickened me. It is repulsive. Sadly, I have seen a similar situation in church before too. The promise of healing and the merry-go-round that I had to run on to 'receive it nearly destroyed me, and I do not say that lightly. To then be basically blamed for not being healed and then ostracized  for being a 'witness' to the LACK of gods healing power was even worse than having my hopes crushed. This kind of preaching from many different religions/cults/new agers must have devastated millions of lives. It must stop.

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Hello

I have not read other people's replies, so apologize if I repeat someone,  but i will share my thoughts. It is not going to be a nodding in agreement post. This topic is a single issue that bothers me to this day.

And it has to do with miraculous healing.

Her name is Euginia Polishuk, she's Ukrainian, and I am too for the record. This is the Only miracle story that is giving me trouble to forget christianity. Here's why.

Her miracle healing happened instanteneously. It was observed by a roomful of people. Now, I'm skipping ahead of myself.

Eugenia Polishuk, from her own words as I interviewed her twice, developed some kind of spine problem from hard manual labor in Ukraine in her late teens. It progressed to the point she could not walk. She had to lay in bed. Good hospitals in Soviet Ukraine tried to fix her problem for two years. Finally she was not helped and was sent home to basically die. The young woman lay in bed for total 4 years and 7 months. The bone disease, I can only guess it was arthritis of some kind crooked her body to the point her knees touched her chin. She was spoonfed for last years. And now the miracle.

Dmitry Berezyuk, whom I visited in Ukraine twice too, was a powerful healer as people regarded him in 1970s. He went to see Euginia and it happened that a room full of people was there. By the way, I have met two people who visited Euginia before she was healed, and they confirmed that she was bed struck and in bad conditioned when they saw her. I have not interviewed or met others that were supposedly in the room when the miracle happened. So, by the account of both Euginia and Dmitry, when Dmitry prayed for her, she suddenly sprang up from the bed (so he had to catch her) and the two say that her bones were cracking. The full miracle happened in the manner of minutes. Dmitry says he watched Euginia's leg veins fill up with blood, as blood travelled down from hips to toes, since she lay in bed for so long and had little blood circulation. According to the both, Euginia started walking the same evening, and had dinner for the first time (i don't know in how long) since she was spoon fed.

So I don't know. I talked to the healed, and I talked to the healer, to both on two occasions, and as a skeptic. I am myself very uninterested in the actual healing to be true because everything else in my worldview aligns with atheism nowdays. But I gotta be honest, I know what I do.

If anyone is interested in the miracle, or to talk with the healed, I'm interested to do something. I am vested in discrediting the story, if not to anyone then to myself. Euginia Polishuk is in her 60s now, she lives in US in the city of Kent, WA. This is about 40 minute drive from where I live. Dmitry Berezyuk lives in Kostopol, Ukraine, I went to see him in Feb or this year. Granted there's a language barrier. I took an non ukrainian with me last time and translated to them. I could do translation if anyone is interested to listen.

In terms of documentation, this part is lacking seriously. The only evidence is the first hand witnesses themselves, the healed and the healer. One surviving evidence is the photo of Eugine laying in bed in what appears crooked position and a photocopy of a medical document that says "General Illness", Someone did investigation to build up the case and contacted her hospital in Ukraine, turned out the documents were lost due to some fire. There's good explanation to the lacking documentation, that in Soviet Ukraine Christians were severly tracked and prosecuted and authorities wanted to silence the healing.

Anyway that's all I got. An account from first hand witnesses of what appears to be a major healing.

All the best

 

This story has zero effect on me, and I will not even say that I respect your thoughts on the matter.  You did not see this yourself; you have heard from people with a vested interest or confirmation bias in believing the story.  Until you see medical documentation proving a drastic and otherwise unexplainable phenomena, then "miracle" should not even be entertained in your thoughts.

 

Much less should I accept it, because I am just another step removed.

 

Your story is no more persuasive to me than "Mark"'s account of miracles performed by Jesus.

 

But I would say this.  Some Christian might read this story on the internet; and then might tell it to a friend, who tells it to a pastor, who then tells the story in a church.  By which point - how many steps are we removed from the event?  The subject - the witness - you - the internet reader - the friend - the pastor - the congregation.  And yet - when the congregation hear it from the pastor, they assume it must be true!

 

The travesty of Lakeland is that it was largely on film.  We could actually literally see that there were no visible changes taking place.  And yet still people believe it because they suffer from chronic confirmation bias.

 

With all due respect your evaluation of the story of the possible miracle I described is flawed.

I have first hand witnesses, it is not like Mark's account like you say. The difference is, Mark is dead, his account was written almost century after the events, no first hand witness can be contacted or interviewed. I am alive, the first hand witnesses are alive too. Anyone honestly interested to investigate the story is welcome to come to Euginia Polishuk and listen.

I admitted that documentation is lacking. What is there, are people who knew Euginia in her terrible condition before the healing, and also I was told some medical personnell in Ukraine that treated her.

This story will not convince a reader. But it is compelling to hear it from the healed herself. What makes it compelling?

Some facts from the story can be assumed correct. The fact that Euginia was laying in bed for 4 years, 7 months. The fact that she was spoonfed. The woman also has an artifact -- the dress so short it would fit a kindergardener, because her knees were touching her chest from the illness. Here is a link to the testimony http://iscelen.org/925-evgeniya-polishhuk.html

Now, after listening to her, you have to say either she's lying (and I rulled out that for myself, and to be fair, you have to investigate, at least come and interview her to rule out that she lied) or to find a natural explanation for immediate improvement in her health.

So in short you are doing no justice to the story. You obviously have already made decision to disregard it as a rumor. But if you are seriously writing  anti testimony to miracles, then you have to apply some journalistic skills and don't put this in the category of third-hand accounts.

 

 

 

You can believe whatever you like if it makes you feel good.  I'll stick to reality, thanks.

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weird things happen. healthy people croak for no reason on occasion so I can see a sick person getting well. however I would not attribute it at all to the supernatural. just sometimes weird things happen. also it is the exception not the rule

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As a person who has ab natal cerebral palsy necessitating wheelchairs and ab natal deafness requiring sign language and written English as well, I have been subject of many an attempt at healing. Obviously, they haven't worked or I would have been unreservedly a Christian all of these years ago. What is strange is that if a single attempt at healing haven't worked, you would have thought that it would have seriously put a true dent in the case that God is all powerful since all powerful means not an exception should be made in healing, all should be healed, but I am not healed neither are any other people even if they think they have been healed. I think not a single real case of healing ever has been made in any given year of Christianity. Not ever.

 

Miracle healing wasn't the thing that made me left Christianity, although it was a definite factor.

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Hello

I have not read other people's replies, so apologize if I repeat someone,  but i will share my thoughts. It is not going to be a nodding in agreement post. This topic is a single issue that bothers me to this day.

And it has to do with miraculous healing.

Her name is Euginia Polishuk, she's Ukrainian, and I am too for the record. This is the Only miracle story that is giving me trouble to forget christianity. Here's why.

Her miracle healing happened instanteneously. It was observed by a roomful of people. Now, I'm skipping ahead of myself.

Eugenia Polishuk, from her own words as I interviewed her twice, developed some kind of spine problem from hard manual labor in Ukraine in her late teens. It progressed to the point she could not walk. She had to lay in bed. Good hospitals in Soviet Ukraine tried to fix her problem for two years. Finally she was not helped and was sent home to basically die. The young woman lay in bed for total 4 years and 7 months. The bone disease, I can only guess it was arthritis of some kind crooked her body to the point her knees touched her chin. She was spoonfed for last years. And now the miracle.

Dmitry Berezyuk, whom I visited in Ukraine twice too, was a powerful healer as people regarded him in 1970s. He went to see Euginia and it happened that a room full of people was there. By the way, I have met two people who visited Euginia before she was healed, and they confirmed that she was bed struck and in bad conditioned when they saw her. I have not interviewed or met others that were supposedly in the room when the miracle happened. So, by the account of both Euginia and Dmitry, when Dmitry prayed for her, she suddenly sprang up from the bed (so he had to catch her) and the two say that her bones were cracking. The full miracle happened in the manner of minutes. Dmitry says he watched Euginia's leg veins fill up with blood, as blood travelled down from hips to toes, since she lay in bed for so long and had little blood circulation. According to the both, Euginia started walking the same evening, and had dinner for the first time (i don't know in how long) since she was spoon fed.

So I don't know. I talked to the healed, and I talked to the healer, to both on two occasions, and as a skeptic. I am myself very uninterested in the actual healing to be true because everything else in my worldview aligns with atheism nowdays. But I gotta be honest, I know what I do.

If anyone is interested in the miracle, or to talk with the healed, I'm interested to do something. I am vested in discrediting the story, if not to anyone then to myself. Euginia Polishuk is in her 60s now, she lives in US in the city of Kent, WA. This is about 40 minute drive from where I live. Dmitry Berezyuk lives in Kostopol, Ukraine, I went to see him in Feb or this year. Granted there's a language barrier. I took an non ukrainian with me last time and translated to them. I could do translation if anyone is interested to listen.

In terms of documentation, this part is lacking seriously. The only evidence is the first hand witnesses themselves, the healed and the healer. One surviving evidence is the photo of Eugine laying in bed in what appears crooked position and a photocopy of a medical document that says "General Illness", Someone did investigation to build up the case and contacted her hospital in Ukraine, turned out the documents were lost due to some fire. There's good explanation to the lacking documentation, that in Soviet Ukraine Christians were severly tracked and prosecuted and authorities wanted to silence the healing.

Anyway that's all I got. An account from first hand witnesses of what appears to be a major healing.

All the best

uh.. sorry but you're a complete idiot if you believe this ridiculous story, and the people who cooked it up are the lowest of the low. 

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