The Shroud of Turin: modern, digitally processed image of the face on the cloth [left] and the full body image as seen on the shroud [right].

The Shroud of Turin: Controversial Cloth Defies Explanation as Study Shows it Has DNA From Around the World

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Believed by many to be the burial cloth of Jesus of Nazareth, but held only as a religious article of historical significance by skeptics, the Shroud of Turin has captivated scholars and scientists alike due to its mysterious nature. New DNA tests add to the body of research that only serves to highlight the strange, unexplained origins of the shroud.

The cloth, a pale sheet of woven fabric approximately 14-feet (4.5 meters) –long, might be considered unremarkable save for the distinctive reddish-brown markings on its front and back. The image of a prone man with hands folded can be made out on the cloth, with both the front and back views of the head meeting neatly at the middle of the sheet, suggesting it was folded over the front and back of a naked body in death. Countless horrible wounds to the body are revealed through the images on the fabric, from slashes to gouges, piercings and welts. These images strongly indicate to proponents the evidence of crucifixion and the Biblical description of the death of Jesus.

The full length of the Shroud of Turin. Scientists and scholars cannot resolve the mystery of the shroud.

The full length of the Shroud of Turin. Scientists and scholars cannot resolve the mystery of the shroud. ( Public Domain )

The Hidden History of the Shroud

Historical record can place the shroud in the late 1300s. Scholars debate its existence previous to 1390, describing the period before that as “very murky territory.” Even during the middle ages there was disagreement over authenticity of the cloth, with written claims at the time between church officials suggesting it was a forgery. However, historians raise the possibility that several such ‘shrouds’ were making the rounds at the time, and forgery claims might have had nothing to do with the cloth found today in the cathedral in Turin, Italy.

Since the 15 th century, the existence of that shroud is well documented. It was deeded to the House of Savoy in Italy in 1453, and suffered damage in a fire. Patches and repair-work have been done at various times on the artifact. It was set in a chapel in the 17 th century, but it wasn’t until 200 years later that it was put on public display, and first photographed.

Full length negatives of the Shroud of Turin.

Full length negatives of the Shroud of Turin. ( Public Domain )

It was these photographs which elevated the cloth from relic to sensation. The photos were not remarkable in and of themselves, until viewed in the reverse negative, whereupon a detailed image of a wounded, bearded man became clearly visible. It had previously been suspected that the stains and images were painted on the linen by an artist at some point in its history, but the discovery of the detailed body image found embedded within the fabric drastically rewrote theories, and convinced many that the images were made through contact with an actual human corpse. Some Christians believe the image was transferred from Jesus’ body onto the cloth with a release of “divine light” or energy upon his resurrection.

A poster advertising the 1898 exhibition of the shroud in Turin. Secondo Pia's photograph was taken a few weeks too late to be included in the poster. The image on the poster includes a painted face, not obtained from Pia's photograph.

A poster advertising the 1898 exhibition of the shroud in Turin. Secondo Pia's photograph was taken a few weeks too late to be included in the poster. The image on the poster includes a painted face, not obtained from Pia's photograph. ( Public Domain )

If this was indeed the death shroud which encased the body of the historical Jesus of Nazareth, that would date the cloth to 30 AD, the biblical date of the death of Jesus. However, this dating is at odds with later historical record, as well as the modern scientific research on the artifact.

Scientific Examinations and Bombshell Revelations

A variety of tests have been carried out on the shroud since scientists were first allowed to examine it in 1969, including physical examinations, chemical analyses, and radiocarbon dating. Initial examinations led to the formation of an 11-member Turin Commission composed of scientists and advisors, and in 1977 the Shroud of Turin Research Project (STURP) was born.

Their findings, based on a gamut of rigorous tests, were reported in 1981, stating:

"We can conclude for now that the Shroud image is that of a real human form of a scourged, crucified man. It is not the product of an artist. The blood stains are composed of hemoglobin and also give a positive test for serum albumin. The image is an ongoing mystery and until further chemical studies are made, perhaps by this group of scientists, or perhaps by some scientists in the future, the problem remains unsolved."

Comments

He wasn't Jesus. It wasn't meant to be but ended up a scam. There are human traces because they wrapped up a person who was tortured to death then it was... art for church. So people went over and spread themselves over it through obsession. It's no mystery. Jesus wouldn't have looked Caucasian/Hispanic anyway plus he wasn't a man. He (Jesus) is the fucken literal sun. Let's leave our torture fetishes alone. Polina.

As a Catholic kid, we had prayerbookmarks of this image, of His face, that even in the 60s were very clear, and there exist full-sized reproductions of the photographs printed as positives, because I saw one myself, in India as it happens, in the 1980s. It is also occasionally possible to go to the church in Turin and see it for yourselves, and if it is not on display, one of these pictures I mentioned is there in its place.

I have not ever, even for a fraction of a millisecond of conscious life, doubted its reality, and looking through this thread written by people who are wasting their lives nit-picking through their own lack of consciousness, glued to their microscopes and their computer screens, when they deny the divinity of even a leaf, let alone a tree, or their own, or their fellows, it does seem to me incredibly sad and stupid of them so to do, because they are not in the same world that the believer and the conscious enlightened man inhabits at all, and it were better they set off somewhere where the genuinely miraculous/paranormal CAN be experienced today, rather than waste their time on a shroud, that (unlike a genuine guru/boddhisattva/avatar ) cannot raise them from among the dead.

I’m new to AO so I missed the original discussion but I wonder why no one brought up older accounts of the shroud. The 4th century Christian writer Eusebius(of Caesarea) reported that he had read a letter written by King Abgar of Edessa (born between 4 BC and 13 AD to about 40 AD) that asked Jesus  to come cure him of an illness. Abgar received a reply from Jesus, declining the invitation, but promising a future visit by one of his disciples. Thaddeus (1 of the 70) come to Edessa carrying a cloth. The king was miraculously healed. There was no mention of an image but it could have been the same cloth, especially if 50 years was needed to make the image appear.

The record I could find of a physical image is in the Evagrius Scholasticus, written about 593 which claims that a cloth with an image helped defend the city of Edessa against the Persians (544). The cloth then went to Constantinople (10th century) disappearing during the sack of Constantinople (1204).

All this predates the 1300’s date.

As for the carbon dating, I doubt the authenticity due to the areas of cloth that were dated, However I can understand the church’s stance on dating the center of the cloth where the image resides since such dating would destroy the sample. Perhaps, in the future, a method of dating will be discovered that doesn’t destroy the sample and the church will relent. I sincerely hope so.

P.S. I’m an open-minded Christian merely seeking the truth

There is another piece of evidence that has DNA from Yeshua, the Sudarium of Oviedo, which matches the blood stains of the Shroud of Turin. The Sudarium was a small piece of cloth that was placed over the head of Yeshua as they brought him down from the cloth, and placed him on the Shroud. Here is a great interview about it....

https://www.facebook.com/restoretherealjeshua/videos/1035610803225120/

Currently the ‘experts’ use radiocarbon dating as the most confirming method to date any artifact. But it may be that the method is faulty & could be misinforming everything at the moment. I do not know if that is true, and of course scientists always argue that they are right anyway, but we really need to just remember that nothing is definite in history, we only know what we think we know at this point in time, and that could change. I am fascinated by the information on this shroud, the fact that the cloth is from India – probably imported into the ME as all the world was trading even then – so why not that, and the date of the cloth could change if the carbon dating proves to be not quite so reliable in future – I read somewhere of that possibility but I have lost that reference.  Also there are scientists who say the tests done on the shroud were not valid – http://www.innoval.com/C14/  has a lot of information on this argument.   

Veronica

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