Google Ads

  • Google Ads

  • Bible Wheel Book

  • Google Ads

  • Bibles, Wheels, and Brains (BibleWheel.com 3.0)

    This is the third version of the site I founded on February 11, 2001 to share my discovery of the Bible Wheel, which is a simple two-dimensional representation of the 66 books of the Bible as three wheels within a wheel of 22 Spokes, corresponding to the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet. I was a devout Christian at that time, and spent the next decade writing hundreds of articles to explain my discovery, as well as a 412 page hardbound book. I felt it was proof that God had designed the detailed structure of Scripture. Unfortunately, it also had the deleterious effect of drawing me into a rather conservative form of Christian fundamentalism since I did, after all, feel that I had objectively verifiable proof of the divine inspiration of the Bible. But as the years rolled by, I began to notice that there were problems with the Bible that I just could not ignore and after a couple of years of serious discourse with my wife Rose, we both came to understand that the Bible was not the "Word of God." I explain my reasons in a post called Why I Quit Christianity.

    I then struggled for some time to figure out what to do with this website. It has been online for over eleven years so my name is forever linked to all the articles I wrote and would remain so even if I deleted them all (thanks to Google and similar services). And besides, I did not want to delete them since they represent a passion that dominated my life and mind for over a decade and bear witness to how I understood the world. It's rather like a spiritual and intellectual diary. And all of the factual information remains valid, only my interpretation of what it means has changed. The old site, which is filled with exuberant praises of God and exhortations to believe in Christ, no longer represents what I believe. As it stands, it is a complete misrepresentation of the man I now am. So I couldn't hang on and I couldn't let go. What was the solution? Transformation. Disintegration and reintegration into a new form, like a caterpillar metamorphosing into a butterfly. The same materials remain but with new meanings and new relationships to the whole integrated body of human knowledge. Thus I broke apart the tight link between the words "Bible" and "Wheel" and pluralized them to suggest multiplicity rather than a fixed, limited point of view. This enabled them to serve as "metonyms" - objects that represent abstract ideas. The word "Bibles" is meant as a metonym of Religion and "Wheels" a metonym of Science since the invention of the wheel is an archetype of technology and human progress. This site therefore is transformed into a place where I can authentically represent who I am and where like-minded people can share in the exploration of the two great aspects of the Mind typified by Religion and Science, which correspond well with the right and left hemispheres of brain (which Rose and I study with much enthusiasm).

    So welcome to Bibles, Wheels, and Brains. I encourage all visitors to comment on any content that catches their interest. Skeptics and believers of any variety are all welcome. If you register, your comments will appear instantly. Guest comments will have to wait for approval by a moderator.

    Useful Links
    Comments 5 Comments
    1. Unregistered's Avatar
      Unregistered -
      Richard,

      I'm amazed the way transformation is reflected in your writings. I've one question, If Jesus Christ's ressurection was false as the four gospels contradict as per one of your comments, Why did the apostles die for Him?


      Vijay
      India
      mail me: vijaythomson@gmail.com
    1. Richard Amiel McGough's Avatar
      Richard Amiel McGough -
      Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
      Richard,

      I'm amazed the way transformation is reflected in your writings. I've one question, If Jesus Christ's ressurection was false as the four gospels contradict as per one of your comments, Why did the apostles die for Him?


      Vijay
      India
      mail me: vijaythomson@gmail.com
      Hi Vijay,

      Your question is based on many presuppositions that may or may not be true. How do you know that the apostles died for him? There are a few references in the Bible, but most come from questionable church tradition written much later. But even the testimony of the Gospels must be questioned because they are religious tracts designed to convince people of a particular religious dogma. This makes them suspect right from the start. Would you accept all the stories the Mormon church tells about Joseph Smith? Of course not. And why not? Because you know that those stories were heavily doctored to promote their religion. We should have the same skepticism for any religious document received from history. Furthermore, the Bible makes extraordinary claims unlike normal history books. No one says that George Washington walked on water! And if we found such a story, we would rightly be highly skeptical.

      It is also important to understand that tour question is fundamentally psychological - it involves the psychology of believers. Why are so many people willing to die for their religious convictions? A lot of insight comes from studying modern religious movements because we have lots of evidence available for analysis. The book When Prophecy Fails is of particular relevance because it shows that believers tend to "double down" on their faith when reality contradicts their beliefs. It documents a cult set up by a self-proclaimed prophet who predicted a great flood back in the 50s. When it didn't happen, the believers became even more fervent in their beliefs. Here is a snippet from the wiki article:
      Festinger's theory of cognitive dissonance can account for the psychological consequences of disconfirmed expectations. One of the first published cases of dissonance was reported in the book, When Prophecy Fails (Festinger et al. 1956). Festinger and his associates read an interesting item in their local newspaper headlined "Prophecy from planet Clarion call to city: flee that flood." A housewife from Chicago (changed to "Michigan" in the book), given the name "Marian Keech" (real name: Dorothy Martin (1900–1992), later known as Sister Thedra[1]), had mysteriously been given messages in her house in the form of "automatic writing" from alien beings on the planet Clarion. These messages revealed that the world would end in a great flood before dawn on December 21, 1954. Mrs. Keech had previously been involved with L. Ron Hubbard's Dianetics movement, and her cult incorporated ideas from what was to become Scientology.[2] The group of believers, headed by Keech, had taken strong behavioral steps to indicate their degree of commitment to the belief. They had left jobs, college, and spouses, and had given away money and possessions to prepare for their departure on the flying saucer, which was to rescue the group of true believers.
      There are many historical examples of believers doing extravagant things to prove that they are "true believers." Remember the Heaven's Gate cult? They all killed themselves because they believed that's what they had to do to get on the flying saucer that was hiding behind the Hale-Bopp comet. This proves that religious fervor will lead people to do anything, even give up their lives for a lie. Is there any reason to think similar psychology was not at play in the formation of Christianity?

      Christianity began as a failed apocalyptic cult. They expected the end of the world and the coming of Christ to happen during their own generation, just like many modern Christians. Believers are taught that "faith" is the highest virtue and so when reality contradicts their faith, they feel they must be "faithful" and so they ignore reality and stand on whatever dogma they have been taught. This explains a lot about the psychology of believers and why they do things that seem so unreasonable.

      Richard
    1. Unregistered's Avatar
      Unregistered -
      Truth is available in the bible as most anyone would agree. But what truth do you appreciate and what do you do with it once you have it? The Bible Wheel is a great truth that stands out and shouts. But God says He can be heard as a still small voice, can He?
    1. Richard Amiel McGough's Avatar
      Richard Amiel McGough -
      Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
      Truth is available in the bible as most anyone would agree. But what truth do you appreciate and what do you do with it once you have it? The Bible Wheel is a great truth that stands out and shouts. But God says He can be heard as a still small voice, can He?
      The Bible contains both truth and falsehood.

      I appreciate the truths I can see and understand. I can't think of any "truth" that is unique to the Bible. It is unique in other ways, but not in the revelation of "truth" in the sense of propositions that should be believed. It's more like a mystical book if anything.

      The Bible Wheel certainly caused me to "stand and shout"! But then I had to admit that I don't believe in the God it presents. He doesn't make any sense, and worse, there are many times he seems simply irrational and needlessly cruel. He certainly does not seem real.

      The "still small voice" is probably your own conscience. Or "subconscious" mind talking to yourself. Is there any reason to think that the true God is anything like the God of the Bible who commands genocide and demands blood sacrifice for the "crime" of being born?
    1. Manuela's Avatar
      Manuela -
      God is never needlessly cruel, and the Bible is completely true, the inerrant Word of a loving God, even though it often seems otherwise.

      For complete understanding of the content of the Bible, one should read it in its entirety before creating a schema concerning the nature of God. The Bible is dimensional; it is living and breathing. You need to ask God for wisdom to grasp what you don't understand.

      If someone you cared about told you something that didn't make sense, wouldn't you ask them to clarify? Or would you immediately decide that person is unintelligent, and a liar, even if it was not that person's fault, but instead it is your own misunderstanding and lack of effort in getting to the bottom of things? Who would be the one who is displaying the greater fault? And lets just say that the person was someone you didn't know at all that said something you didn't understand? I'm sure it happens on any forum like this; you ask them to expound on what they mean, and you calmly discuss it. It is the same thing with God's Word. If it doesn't make sense, then there is more than meets the eye. Get down to the bottom of it by asking Him what it means...If you trust in His goodness although what you are reading says otherwise, He will answer you because of your faith even through confusion. However, if you just want to believe that he is malicious and hateful, well, I wouldn't know how to advise you there. He isn't going to answer the prayers of those who don't trust that He is who He says He is.

      But to those who trusts Him as an infant that unquestioningly trusts his mother for safety and provision, He shows Himself a sweet, loving, doting, generous Heavenly Father. Sure, things are not always perfect, but it is through the tests that we are made stronger, and we see the face of our Father. I can say this truthfully, because I come from a violent and abusive background. And my life with God in my life is a whole lot sweeter than that horrible life without God that I once wandered blindly through, hating God because I thought He was responsible for my humiliation and physical and emotional pain.

      The first dimension of the Bible is simply a history of what happened. When we read history books, we gain knowledge of what happened in history, but we are rarely told the reason. Also, history books tell things as they happened without extending an implied opinion of right and wrong. So it is with the bible. Just because God recorded what happened, or what someone did, does not mean that he condoned it, or even that he wanted it. He is simply telling what happened. Then somewhere else, perhaps another book or chapter, He will tell what happened as a result of that one thing.

      When the United States joined World War II, the reason was because the Japanese destroyed thousands of Americans who were peacefully slumbering, minding their own business, early one beautiful Sunday morning. But what was happening in the big picture was that several bloodthirsty mad men joined each other in annihilating innocents who were under their care and control. It took an incredible show of power and much death and destruction to stop them. These vicious people certainly weren't destroyed "for the crime of being born." They had indoctrinated their people with their beliefs of race superiority, etc, that would not disappear just because their leaders were gone. The same is to be said about those nations that God ordered the Israelites to destroy. These people were inherently cruel and heartless because their culture was saturated with blood and violence toward each other and had been for many, many generations. Their women were cruel, their children were cruel, it was their culture and way of life.

      For example, Genesis 15:16 shows a patient God who is giving the Amorites opportunity to change their ways, but He knows they won't. He tells Abraham that He will send Israel to Egypt to separate them from the peoples where they were living. He tells Abraham that when He has had all He can take of the behavior of the Amorites, He will take the Land from the Amorites and give it to Israel. (I am paraphrasing.) So, you have to wonder what the Amorites were doing to upset God so much that He would want to destroy them? Google them to find out. They hail from Sumeria (ironically the Sumerians give credit for their creation to gods from other planets, and not to our God.) And settled in Syria, where they currently reside. They were nomadic and were ruled by bloodthirsty tribal chiefs who invaded local nations, brutally and sadistically killing and raping the men, women, elderly, children and infants. Their prime deity is Molech, to whom they sacrificed huge numbers of their own children by burning them alive. And to make it worse, those innocent women and men were honored to "pass their children through the fire." Imagine the screams of those little ones! But never mind, their screams were covered by the loud beatings of drums and shouts of revelry and praise to their god, Moloch, who would bless them. And it is said that as the children burned, their little faces contorted into hideous smiles. I am sure the mothers and fathers who sacrificed their children believed that their child was lucky to be given in death to their "god" Moloch. This people also practiced ritual rape, orgies and bestiality to honor their god.

      Let me ask you this? Saddam Hussein was executed for genocide of the Kurdish people, and murder of his own countrymen, and most of the world believed that it was the right and just thing to do. Most of the world agreed that the war in Iraq was justified. What if this people, the Amorites, had lived in this day and age? What if this people had not been exterminated by a wise God with the wisdom and foresight and desire to preserve His creation? Would their culture spread like blood through water throughout the world? I would venture to say that our human race would no longer exist because we would have exterminated ourselves. And all of the other "innocent" peoples that God instructed the Israelites to annihilate were equally evil. You see the results of the Israelites disobedience in the politics of the Middle East. The Israelites left remnants of those after being told to get rid of them. They were disobedient. Now, the descendants of those remnants have the same cultural characteristics with regards to brutality and violence as their ancestors, and are waging war against Israel and the rest of the world. I would venture to trust that anyone would agree that by and large, (though there are definitely many exceptions, and many good and loving people in those nations) the citizens of Syria, Libya, Lebanon, Iran, Iraq, etc (the descendants of those who were left) embrace violence, racial superiority, prejudice, hate, and even human sacrifice in the name of their god, just as their ancestors did. Contrast those nations with the nations that embrace pure Christianity, and I don't mean the Christianity that was defiled by the so called "Church," which has become worldly, and an enemy of God. (Of course that is a generalization, and not true for the true Church, the Body of Christ. -The evil one finds a way to corrupt everything that is special to God.

      Since the Bible is divided into chapters and verses, it is very easy to inadvertently take something out of context. It is easy to see something troubling and form an inaccurate understanding on the happenings in that passage without taking into account all the verses pertaining to it. And all of the verses necessary to see the complete picture are often scattered throughout the entire bible. The explanation for an Old Testament may be explained way over in the New Testament. For anyone who truly wishes to have a true understanding of Holy God and His Holy Word, they must must must read the whole Bible instead of trying to scrape together an understanding by fragmenting the Bible into isolated verses and scriptures. It would be like reading only one chapter of a mystery novel and expecting to know how it ends. In order to understand any literature, you must read to the end and be ready for plot twists and unexpected characters and happenings to be added to the plot. Just as the Father, Son and Spirit comprise one God and you must try to grasp all 3 as 1 to know the 1 God, you must grasp all 66 Books that make up the 1 Bible to understand the 1 Word of God.

      Furthermore, to those who appreciate Algebra, the Torah, and the rest of the Bible is the Word of God. Also, John1:1 tells us that Jesus is the Word of God. If a=c and b=c, then a=c, then Jesus Christ is the Word of God who upholds the Universe with the Word of His Power.

      Even though the Bible is confusing, and on the surface, God sometimes seems to be malicious and unfair, you find the truth, if you really want to know it, thus believing the truth over the lies, thus being saved. It is all buried in the dimensions of the magnificent, loving, living, breathing, intelligent Word of God.

      We are all going to believe what we choose to believe.
      The great Bob Dylan says it well:

      You may be a preacher with your spiritual pride
      You may be a city councilman takin' bribes on the side
      You may be workin' in a barbershop, you may know how to cut hair
      You may be somebody's mistress, may be somebody's heir

      But you're gonna have to serve somebody
      Yes you're gonna have to serve somebody
      Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord
      But you're gonna have to serve somebody

      In Matt 12:30 our Saviour tells us that "Anyone who isn't with me opposes me, and anyone who isn't working with me is actually working against me." I tremble to think what will happen to those who oppose the Living God. He didn't create Hell for us. He created it for those who brought calamity upon the human race. And if we do not love God, there is no place for us in Heaven. If we do not love and serve God, then we are serving those others who hate Him. Therefore, we go where they will go because there is nowhere else.
    Comments Leave Comment

    Click here to log in

    Please enter the number that rhymes with floor.