Hm. Obscure. Intriguing. Okay. Then briefly down a rabbit hole I learn that Saint Isidore of Seville is the patron saint of "the Internet, computer users, computer technicians, programmers, students"
* Saint Bartholomew was skinned alive - he is the patron saint of butcher, tanners, book binders etc.
* John the Apostle was boiled alive - he is the patron saint of burn victims
* Simon the Zealot was sawed in half - he is the patron saint of sawyers, lumberjacks and curriers (leather tanners who specialize in shaping and stretching leather)
* St Sebastian was shot full of arrows, recovered, an beaten to death by a bunch of clubs by the emperor's soldiers - he's the saint of archers and soldiers
* St Barbara was tortured and then beheaded, when they were carting her body off, the cart was struck by lighting, catching fire - she's the patron saint of firefighters, artillerymen, and those who work with explosives
* St Lawrence got cooked to death over hot coals. After being roasted for a while, he told his executioner "I'm done on this side, turn me over" - patron saint of cooks and barbeque and comedians
I find it deeply amusing how much Mankind loves polytheism and yet most of today's major religions are monotheistic.
And I don't think it's a stretch to assume that this is where the Christian cult of the saints derives from. Especially when you look at some of those saints, and see how they have effectively overlapped with some pagan deity from older times. For example:
There's a number of problems with that explanation, the three most obvious of which are Ss. Michael, Raphael, and Gabriel.
And at the same time, there is something in humanity that recoils from such a thing, so we personify this impersonal vastness and power with a pantheon that gives. . . a more comfortable and familiar user experience.
And of course it's not limited to Christianity. Buddhism is non-theistic (in the Western sense), and yet there's a pantheon of Buddhas of past and future eras, tantric meditation deities, emanations, incarnations, benevolent devas, etc. Tibetan Buddhism in particular innovates deeply into this territory.
While certainly most people are monotheistic, it's really just two religions, and they worship the same god.
Polytheism seems deeply default.
Almost every culture that develops religion independently develops a polytheistic religion. Those almost never morph into monotheistic religions.
The numbers of adherents are just dominated by Christianity and Islam, which are by no coincidence the principle proselytising religions in history. In fact proselytism was historically rarely observed outside of those two religions.
>His fame after his death was based on his Etymologiae, an etymological encyclopedia which assembled extracts of many books from classical antiquity that would have otherwise been lost.
That time as Christianity was forming itself is so interesting to look at if you were raised in a particular sect - the idea that there is any truly singular deity-preferred way to live seems laughable given how many differences of opinion there was even in the earliest church - frequently the only justification is that because a set of ideas succeeded it must be right, in a sort of might makes right sense.
The real roast is always in the comments. I like to imagine that it wasn't so much a transcription error as it was a bored monk looking for some variety.
According to Wikipedia his story is apocryphal.
US: This is a great way to shoot heavy shit really high.
(Unless you deliberately posted one that doesn't work, in which case, you got me :) )
We need a culture of rational and critical thought, not one that sequesters away knowledge.
The Chemistry Of Powder And Explosives by Tenney L. Davis
Pyrotechnics by George Weingart
Military and Civilian Pyrotechnics by Herbert Ellern
Chemistry and Technology of Explosives by Tadeusz Urbanski
Volume 1: https://archive.org/details/Chemistry_and_Technology_of_Expl...
Volume 2: https://archive.org/details/Chemistry_and_Technology_of_Expl...
Volume 3: https://archive.org/details/Chemistry_and_Technology_of_Expl...
Volume 4: https://archive.org/details/ChemistryAndTechnologyOfExplosiv...
I'm not going to link all 10 volumes of Fedoroff's Encyclopedia of Explosives and Related Items, but they're online too. They are sitting on the shelves of university libraries around the world and have been for decades. So are books about the production and use of chemical warfare agents! These books are also much higher quality than information circulating in text files or printed "cookbooks" selling the allure of forbidden knowledge.
Generally speaking, people don't abuse this knowledge to violent ends because
1) Most people never seriously intend to commit violence in the first place.
2) Of the few people with premeditated intent to commit violent crime, most will not or even can not manage to make effective poisons and explosives from accessible materials, even given a curated reading list of relevant books. Technical aptitude and diligent study do not intersect with violent criminality very often.
I've heard 'red iodine' is a long running troll the intelligence community plays on terrorist groups. They say it works; extremists say it works & you can't fool them out of looking for it!
I consider Essential Craftsman to be one of the best YouTube channels out there. If you're interested in tools, construction or history in heavy industry, definitely give it a look.
Life imitating art once again, I see.
Then again, I'm not an expert in this kind of thing. Would this somehow make things way more dangerous in a different way?
They really seem to be scraping the bottom of the barrel.
Sometimes the most interesting programs go into depth about some esoteric topic and can end up revealing a lot.
What’s your problem with it?
The dude seemed old enough to have seen this done in antebellum days so we believed him.
(Though I never did such things with my father or alone, as I did not have access to the needed equipment)
It's still possible to have that bonding experience today if you have some open space where there is nothing flammable. I see that Amazon has multiple sellers of saltpeter (potassium nitrate), the key ingredient. As recently as last year I have also seen it sold as stump remover in the gardening section of Fred Meyer (Kroger).
Potassium nitrate plus various fuels like charcoal and/or dusting sulfur, sugar, and iron filings is great fun and relatively benign. Do any grinding by hand in a porcelain mortar and pestle and there's really no risk of mechanical ignition. The mixtures don't burn fast enough to risk explosive effects unless ground very finely or strongly confined . I had to photocopy the black powder and pyrotechnics sections of The Chemistry of Powder and Explosives from the library, but today you can find a full scan of that book (and much more) online.
 You can also make more vigorous mixtures with potassium nitrate by using powdered metal fuels, but you're not going to find those fuels just sitting on the shelves of ordinary retailers.
Those were cool experiments :) though I never got much bang for the buck (more like a schwoooooo)