Dr. James T Richardson is a Professor of Sociology and Judicial Studies at the University of Nevada, Reno. He studies new religions and wrote a book about the Satanism Scare the griped the country during the McMartin pre-school trials during the 1980s.
Professor Tudor Parfitt discussed his new book, The Lost Ark of the Covenant, in which he recounts his real-life quest to recover the 2,500 year old biblical artifact that contained the Ten Commandments. Parfitt provided a brief history of the Ark of the Covenant, pointing out that it may have differed in appearance from the descriptions presented in the Bible. He also spoke about his life's work tracking down the lost tribes of Israel in Africa and Asia. Parfitt's journey eventually led him to Zimbabwe and to the Lemba, a tribe that claimed to be Jews who had traveled from Israel to their present homeland in Africa centuries if not millennia earlier. According to Parfitt's research, the Lemba brought a wooden drum-like object out of Israel that was eerily similar to the Ark of the Covenant. The Lemba's 'Ark' had rings on each corner, was carried on poles, covered with skins and contained sacred items, Parfitt said. It was associated with noise, explosions and fire, Par ... More »Host: Ian Punnett