Quotations of the nonfiction book
Pub: Apr 18, 2014
Religion / Religion
Quoting from Searching for Ropens and Finding God
This flies high above a common true-life adventure, revealing the early stages of what may
become the most unsettling scientific discovery since Copernicus and Galileo.
Persons of various faiths, with various levels of education, from various countries and cultures,
have seen a living pterosaur.
. . . The prayers of family, friends, and other Americans were answered when I found Luke Paina,
who became my interpreter, bodyguard, and counselor. By the grace of the Father of us all, Luke
and I were welcomed like brothers by those we met on Umboi Island, and through the friendship
of humble Christians in remote villages, we were fed, sheltered, and led to those who made this
book possible: the native eyewitnesses. Thank you; tenku tru.
This is not an instruction manual for finding God, yet I suggest that the spiritual quest gives you
the highest reward. . . .
This is not propaganda for any human philosophy, yet I extoll the accomplishments of those
Young Earth Creationists who have been my associates for many years. . . .
Perhaps the biggest obstacle to getting our ideas noticed is the shock. Here’s how I put it: Not
everybody embraces a live pterodactyl. . . .
Each of us needs to listen—to learn to listen much better, for some of us.
. . . this is not mainly about religion, not in the usual sense. It’s less likely to take you to church
than into the lives of ordinary persons who have encountered extraordinary flying creatures, and
into the lives of Christians who have risked their health, even their lives, in searching for living
pterosaurs. . . .
We live in a world in which modern Westerners, at least many respectable or respected ones,
have believed all magical dragons to be only legendary and all pterosaurs to be extinct and even
more ancient; also in this world, many natives, whom we had assumed more primitive or less
gifted than us, have believed all dragons to be real and either magical or spiritually gifted. In
some areas, they believe dragons to be both ancient and modern. What if all of us have been
only partially correct? What if flying dragons are not so much ancient as modern, not so much
magical as physically gifted, not so much legendary as real? . . .
Believe what you will about modern dragons, about living pterosaurs, about giant glowing
ropens. But the power of the testimonies of the eyewitnesses I’ve encountered, over the past ten
years, including many credible natives I met on Umboi Island, makes that flying creature as real
to me, almost, as if I had stared a ropen in the face. How can I deny the credibility of the eyewit-
nesses I have interviewed? With no other reasonable explanation, I now believe in modern
dragons, in living pterosaurs, in giant glowing ropens.
It looked like a dead pterodactyl: not fossil bones but with skin, like it had died recently. Could
those creatures, non-extinct, still fly? Although I could not verify the photo was genuine, the idea
within that image in a soon-forgotten book would be awakened four decades later, to plunge me
into the most dramatic adventure of my life: exploring a remote tropical island, searching for
giant living pterosaurs. . . .
I was not embarrassed when the utility man informed us of the alligator in the basement, and I
was not reproved when Mom reminded me of germs, for I scrubbed the bathtub both before and
after giving my pets the sunlamp treatments. . . .
In September of 2004, whether with childlike faith or childish folly, with lovely wonderful
thoughts I would fly across an ocean to arrive alone in Papua New Guinea. Appearing like the
boy who wouldn’t grow up, I would explore a tropical paradise, a wonderland of legend. I myself
would be searching for ropens.
Eunice, a school teacher’s wife, described . . . an attempted grave robbery. One night, in April of
1993, near the northwest coast of Umboi Island, after a large funeral procession arrived at the
burial location, from the sea approached a flying creature with a tail that glowed red like burning
embers glow. About two hundred mourners were awake when it flew overhead. The islanders
banged pots and yelled, whereupon the intruder flew into a nearby swamp . . .
Before spotting the creature, while the native guide was ahead of them on the trail, he and his
friend stopped in a clearing. The two soldiers heard a “crashing” noise in the brush, and when
they looked toward the uphill side of the clearing they saw the creature take off into the air. . . .
The creature’s coloring was dark. The neck was long; the head appendage, about half the head-
length. . . . The feet, in flight, were “tucked up” to the body. The length of the head, not counting
the appendage, was similar to the length of the neck, or about three to four feet. Hodgkinson
estimated that the tail was at least ten to fifteen feet long.
My first interview with producers of a television show came in November of 2006, when I met
with Eric Wing and Neil Mandt in their new Hollywood office. I told them about the ropen and
the challenges and dangers of exploring in Papua New Guinea, including Umboi Island. They
were planning their true-life television episode, with an expedition expected around January,
2007. This confirmed that searching for modern pterosaurs is not just for creationists.
Definitions from page 294
I offer the following definition of “modern pterosaur:”
A featherless vertebrate two-winged creature, living within the past few thousand years, having
an elongated digit-like bone on the leading edge of each wing and an absence of any bat-like
wing-support involving bones that radiate into the wing membranes.
In other words, a modern pterosaur, if one could be closely examined, would probably be an
obvious descendant of a winged creature at least closely related to at least one pterosaur species
known from fossils. If I had a shorter way to be that precise, I’d give it to you.
We now can define “ropen,” at least better than I did in previous editions of Searching for Ropens:
A modern pterosaur with Rhamphorhynchoid characteristics.
Copyright 2014 Jonathan David Whitcomb
This U.S. Marine saw
two “pterodactyls” in
Cuba in 1971
Searching for Ropens
and Finding God