I mean the entire point of argumentation – even the strict Socratic form of rigid logical argumentation – is to construct a convincing argument: A conjoined set of statements so incontrovertible as to force agreement.
Philosophy is far more than sitting around and thinking about the nature of things. Lots of people do that, and most of their names are lost to history. It’s about communicating those ideas, and most importantly convincing others that those ideas are both correct and important.
Some of the canonically “great” philosophers are better thinkers than writers. But many more, if we’re being honest, are better writers than thinkers. Their works are a joy to read, following their thought processes. But few of them have really advanced the ideas they’ve tackled very far. They didn’t earn their place in the historical canon by solving anyone, but rather by convincing others that their ideas have merit.
Ultimately there are three skills required of a successful philosopher:
Have interesting ideas
Be able to communicate those ideas fully
Communicate those ideas in a convincing way
Of all of these, the third element is the one that it seems needs the most help from history. A legal-adversarial system following the tradition of Greek democracy wherein the most convincing orator wins the dispute for himself or his client, has proven to be of enormous benefit to advancing philosophy as a concept. Because merely having and explaining interesting ideas is much easier than the third step. That requires an evolutionary historical stage to get somewhere.
– elbruce – Reddit
The powers that be that influenced Western Thought today at ~ 0 AD are Greece, Rome, Egypt, and Jerusalem.
“Had Alexandria triumphed and not Rome, the extravagant and muddled stories that I have summarized here would be coherent, majestic, and perfectly ordinary” – Jorge Luis Borges (on the gnostics).
Interesting POV on the power struggles. I always viewed the struggle as between Athens and Rome but now I think the missing piece to adopting Roman Christianity, was Hellenized Egypt. Once it was brought under Roman patsy rule with Cleopatra… and the library of Alexandria burned. You have it wide open for Christianity to sweep through the East Roman Empire. The Dead Sea Scrolls were secreted away pre East Roman Empire when the Roman empire was sweeping through Jerusalem, in fear of a repeat of Maccabees subjugation of Jewish ideas. I think the Aeneid may have been used to counter Christianity.
The Roman province of Egypt (Latin: Aegyptus, pronounced [ajˈɡʏptʊs]; Greek: Αἴγυπτος Aigyptos [ɛ́ːɣyptos]) was established in 30 BC after Octavian (the future emperor Augustus) defeated his rival Mark Antony, deposed his lover Queen Cleopatra VII and annexed the Ptolemaic kingdom of Egypt to the Roman Empire. The province encompassed most of modern-day Egypt except for the Sinai Peninsula (which would later be conquered by Trajan). Aegyptus was bordered by the provinces of Creta et Cyrenaica to the West and Judaea (later Arabia Petraea) to the East.
It was like a 2nd triumvirate.
The province came to serve as a major producer of grain for the empire and had a highly developed urban economy. Egypt was by far the most wealthy Roman province.
I’ve read about three state religions that Rome may have created.
**[Caesar’s Messiah](http://www.amazon.com/Caesars-Messiah-Conspiracy-Flavian-Signature/dp/1461096405)**, I asked through my school and got this quote on the book from a PhD Professor
> He relies primarily on Josephus which is insufficient–and he does not distinguish between the Greco-Roman construction of the Christ myth and the unknown, anonymous historical personality that provided the basis for the New Testament narrative. but Rome definitely benefited from the co-optation messianic movements during this period. They did the same thing in Egypt by declaring the Roman Emperor as the new pharaoh–the savior king. – Salim Faraji
Needless to say I didn’t really bother investigating. However, the idea stuck in the back of my head. That maybe states create religions.
[**Appollonius of Tyana**](http://www.mountainman.com.au/Apollonius_the_Nazarene_0.htm) is a [conspiracy-like] figure of whom there isn’t much known on and is hard to find reputable authoritative quotes on. However, [livius](http://www.livius.org/ap-ark/apollonius/life/va_00.html) has some good info. I can’t find the quote or reference, but I read one theory where Apollonius was actually *used by the Romans* to combat the spread of Christianity. Indeed, it seems the book was requested by Empress [Julia Domna](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollonius_of_Tyana) ~200 AD. A lot of theories exist where he may actually be the historical figure of Jesus, of which I do not make that claim. I like to play devil’s advocate, and if their is a POV where I can posit the alternative position, I will do so, as an antagonist to Christianity. Either way, he was a Neo Pythagorean.
[**The Aenaeid**](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aeneid). Following in the footsteps of Hail Caesar and Caesar declaring himself a God… you have not so much a religion but rather divine manifest destiny by writing an epic based on Trojan myth that we all know and love to justify some course of action, in this case rule by authority.
So now… I’m wondering if Imperial Rome was in a state of Intellectual decline and promoted a type of intelligence warfare, in the [Sophist tradition](http://www.livius.org/so-st/sophistic/second_sophistic.html), on it’s own people to attain political motives.
> …there were some grounds for this suspicion. On the practical side, merely, there always was a danger lest the Sophistic skill be prostituted to unsocial ends. ([Rogers](https://archive.org/details/studentshistoryo00rogerich), pp. 42-43).
The Theogeny/Illiad is an Epic of the [Mycanean](http://www.penfield.edu/webpages/jgiotto/onlinetextbook.cfm?subpage=1626039) empire and the Fall of the Bronze Age.
> The later Greeks told stories about the Mycenaeans who preceded them, like the poet Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey. In the eyes of the later Greeks, the Mycenaeans were larger than life. One reason for this belief comes from the ruins of the Mycenaean city-states. The walls around these palaces are massive, made from blocks of stone weighing several tons and carried to the mountain-top settlements. The later Greeks called these walls cyclopean walls, named after the one-eyed giant race, because the later Greeks felt only giants could move the stones. A walled mountain or hilltop settlement is called a citadel.
Vergil’s [Anneaid](http://www.sparknotes.com/lit/aeneid/context.html) was an Epic for the justification of Rome continuing it’s rule.
> Immediately after finishing the Georgics, Virgil began his masterwork, the Aeneid. He was fortunate enough to enter the good graces of Augustus, and, in part, the Aeneid serves to legitimize Augustus’s reign.
Is Christianity nothing more than an epic creation itself?. A lot that would make up that cycle was actively suppressed during Rome’s decline. I like to believe this was a period of intellectual decline* in general [this is just before the Dark Ages mind you]. **Domitian** [~80 AD] declared philosophy free zones, and Christianity/paganism in general was persecuted by the Roman Empire. The trend of declining intellectual reason was being met with the desire to control. Indeed, [Sophism’s](http://www.ucpress.edu/book.php?isbn=9780520276819) negative connotation is tied to the fact that in ancient times, only the rich were educated, therefore well spoken. Athenian democracy opened up the forum for everyone to be an orator, to influence others by words. Socrates took this up and opened up Philosophy to the wretches because information in the hands of the few [in power] leads to oligarchy. Hellenized Greece created this environment of persuasive speakers.
> *[As to this matter of faith] I have to reply that we accept it as useful for the multitude, and that we admittedly teach those who cannot abandon everything and pursue a study of rational argument to believe without thinking out their reasons.
– Origen, Contra Celsum (~185 AD)
Two sources [for this idea]:
[Sophists, primarily paraphrasing PhD Philosophy Prof: K Rogers](http://www.apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=3525)
> The earliest Greek philosophers (e.g., Thales, Anaximander, Democritus, etc.), had focused primarily on developing accounts of physical reality, asking “Of what is the world made?” However, social and political unrest demanded that philosophers move beyond the merely physical questions (i.e., questions about substance) in order to address spiritual and ethical issues. The traditional Greek religion, with its accompanying supernatural explanations for the phenomenal world, were being questioned. Likewise, traditional laws were being questioned (see Rogers, 1923, p. 45). As all citizens in Athens had the opportunity to participate directly as legislators, those who wanted to advance in politics desired special training in rhetoric for the purpose of learning to persuade audiences in the legal/political realm. The Sophists occupied themselves as teachers of rhetoric, among other topics.
[CS Lewis on the Aeneid and Christianity](http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/christian-epic/)
> First, Lewis thought, the Aeneid proved that Virgil’s form of Roman paganism was a whole and comprehensive religion, legitimate in itself, and therefore equal to Christianity in its scope and strength. After all, Lewis reasoned—a bit cynical from the shallow pieties imposed upon him by his schooling—“In the midst of a thousand such religions” stood Christianity, assumed by many to be “true.” In reality, he thought, Christianity was merely the “thousand and first” religion.
Both quotes above are Christian sourced, and ironically, never fully consider if Christianity itself isn’t continuing an epic cycle, one of Judeo myth instead of Trojan myth. It’s hilarious that Christianity is purported as “true” by Lewis as he denies it is an epic myth itself. What is important to note here, is CS Lewis also did not have the vantage point of knowing the full extent of Gnostic documents that the [Nag Hamadi](http://gnosis.org/naghamm/nhl.html) unearthed that exposes more of this proposed *epic cycle*
What I’m thinking is… That Christianity was nothing more than **[Greco-roman sophist epic cycle drama](https://web.archive.org/web/20131025133719/http://nazoreans.com/greco-roman_plot.html)** *unfolding during the decline of the Roman Empire* in Anatolia (Asia Minor) via Gnostic Gospels. It’s posited Homer wrote the Illiad from here, early Philosophical ideas are also from here (ex. Thales to Pythagoras are from Asia Minor, Paul the Apostle, The Essenes). An alternative theory (can’t find source 🙁 ), is it was Athens that propagated the gnostic gospels to offset the rise of Judaism. Marcion of Sinope would be a central figure in this theory, as his bible was the 1st bible that excluded the Old Testament for his belief in [Sophia](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tz-3fGiLwqk) and Gnosticism.
The theory purports that Gnosticism was a rise against Judaism possibly by Jews themselves (but it could have easily been Athens and Rome), but I only focus on the fact that Gnosticsm was driving a wedge between Christianity and Judaism; point being that Anatolia ideas were mixing violently.
Christianity and the Roman Empire were virtually at war with each other, it is during this war that [Athenian/Anatolian] Philosophy was being impregnated into Christianity [& Gnosticism] (Gospels are all Greek and written in Asia Minor), Rome persecuting and crucifying Christians, and Christians defiling Roman temples. Gnosticsm was eventually schismed *away* from Christianity when the [Marcion](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marcionism) version of Christianity was put down with Constantine. When the [East] Roman Empire adopted Orthodox, [East] Rome turned the persecution against the [Greek] Gnostics (I should note the term Gnostics has been used by Plotinus to mean Anatolia pagans). It is important for Rome to adopt Christianity, because Rome [and Greece] remember a set of [Philosophical] beliefs that preceded Christianity and has no reason to accept it’s legitimacy. [East] Rome can now bring followers of Christ under an authoritarian literalist interpretation and bring a wide range of ideas under control, therefore squashing the once rising Christian rebellion. Let the book burnings and Dark Ages begin.
This is where the Schism occurs away from Gnosticsm. Gnosticism was trying to offset Judaism, where as Constantine was trying to Epic build off of it. In the process, they got the documents they needed in line with a philosophical point of view that they found commonality in. Ultimately creating a **philosophical myth inspired legend**, nothing more different than modern day [comic book ethos](http://www.neatorama.com/2014/12/26/8-Things-You-May-Not-Know-About-Batman-the-Comic-Book/). Either way, what we end up with is a East Byzantine Empire based on Orthodox [Greek] Christianity. It would appear that Greek influenced ideas win over Roman ones in terms of pre East-West schisms as the Roman Empire experienced a collapse/split into an East [Greek non Latin] Rome, carrying Greek thought forward (but not for long w the Crusades, which creates the East-West Schism and divorces Latin Christianity from Greek Christianity).
> We must persuade our citizens that the gods are the lords and rulers of all things and what is done, is done by their will and authority: and they are the great benefactors of men, and know who everyone is, and what he does, and what sins he commits, and what he intends to do, and with what piety he fulfills his religious duties.
–Cicero, “The Law” 2:15,16
Apparently the book, [Paradise Lost](http://courses.jercol.macam.ac.il/62/english/lessons/lesson9.html) is a form of Epic using Christianity as it’s base.
Is this how religions get started? Documents alluding to past legends mixed in with philosophical viewpoints taken from the time which make up legends and part of an evolving “cycle”.
If what I’m thinking is true, it would explain why we have no historical record other than testimony for the historicity of Jesus. Thinking of it in light of the Trojan War and Achilles. We can ask ourselves is Achilles a real person? Or was he a plot device where other real names were weaved in with myth. The more I consider this, the more it makes sense. It would explain why we have people quote Jesus but no physical records of his existence. I’m not sure what physical records we would expect. I would suspect a house, an address, taxes paid, something of that sort. Log entries in schools, etc. However, what we have are people quoting his [claimed] deeds ([Flavius](http://carm.org/regarding-quotes-historian-josephus-about-jesus), Cornelius). Just like people quoted Achilles deeds as if it were part of history. Of course we have a much smaller timeframe for an epic cycle to develop; what we do have is conflicting gospels popping into existence, and another [saviour](http://www.chrestos.com/apollonius1-19) like figure existing at the same time, as well as other state religions trying to be created at this time.
Oh Asia Minor, how I do love your wiley ways. I think the best way to map something like this, is to create a timemap of ideas (gospels in this case) and put a date, name, and birthplace of the idea. Instead of trying to chart the area of influence the idea has over a period of time, one could create a hierarchy of idea dependencies using the dates and locations to help get a reference of how far the ideas dispersed and evolved from each other. One has to assume author’s adopt pen names when they write and may not be the person they are pretending to write about, also, we cannot assume that documents have been left unaltered as they have been passed down throughout time, both part of the [tradition](http://www.facingthechallenge.org/josephus.php) of the epic cycle. Some wonder how much Homer had added to the Trojan War with his Illiad than was factual, since the Illiad was written hundreds of years after the war itself. Yet, the words he wrote were pretty much held as fact by Alexander the Great, Xerxes, Augustus, and Sultan Mehmet II when it came to Troy [the sultan is in reference to Trevor Bryce from his Article, The Trojan War from The Oxford Handbook of the Bronze Age Aegean].
R: “That’s how religions get started.”
R: Fear backed political programs, cast by flames on the walls of our cave (much like tv except through regular reunions at the church). They reuse each other content to facilitate adhesion to their party conversion to their religion, but they adapt the interpretations (for better or worst). And to this day these artificial constructs still fool people, unable to see them for what they are, laws they have not participated in writing. How things have changed.
R: There are small amounts of non-biblical historical records (aside from the Dead Sea Scrolls) for Jesus, not too much but enough to back a strong argument in favor of his physical presence ~2000 years ago. The Gnostic gospels and Gnostic views are a huge mind-opener, and studious comparisons of the older sacred texts of the Buddists and Hindus reveal striking parallels that will reshape your present understanding. It blows my fucking mind.
really? Tell me more. I only have Evidence that Demands a Verdict and Halleys, tektonics is another good site (that I haven’t delved into too much). I never really looked into it until I was ready to look at it from an informed perspective, if these are your sources, they are mine as well (in fact I quoted two of his sources in my blurb). Until I was able to use negative inference, reason, and informed research to posit a secular hypothesis at early Christianity, I was scared to delve into a possible Sophist interpretation of events. I think after reading a few weeks of early Greek thought, I found the bed of ideas that birthed Christianity outside of dates and names. There may have been a historical Jesus, but I’d like to subtract all the pre existing ideas before I meet him.
R: First off, it’s important to know that you need to keep an open mind, no matter how hard it is to accept it at first. For me, I find thinking about what I’m learning as the truth until there’s some contradictions within it’s own explanation, regardless of prior knowledge. And then at the end of an argument or perspective I give it a second to digest, at which case the stuff I’m going to try to briefly explain begins to make sense the more and more I read. Being skeptical is good, of course, but where most people falter is that being skeptical hinders you and keeps you closed-minded when you deny any argument before understanding it. And its much harder to understand it if you go into it being skeptical–the pieces don’t connect as they would if you believe it to be true.
I’ve been going back over these posts to ensure I’ve absorbed them correctly. I do the same with my readings to be honest. I do a 2 POV commentary passover over each “author” that supposedly has these “truths”, whatever form they are in. Then I try to find the common denominators of the ideas and see where the contradictions lie. However, I do a much more comprehensive overview as well, I tie in dates, names, and locations of ideas, and try to fit the contextual background of political history.
R: The reason I say small evidence is because, much like a conspiracy, you have to build up bits of basic knowledge–each alone don’t necessarily mean anything by themselves and can be easily pushed aside but the more you understand and learn about it the more it begins to make sense.
R: You have to /want/ to know God for him to be revealed to you.
I think a big problem is the limited time we have. We look to authority for answers, but often authority suppresses information. So one has to look “within” without the biases of authority to survey in an unbiased manner.
R: There’s a lot of misinformation regarding God and the Gnostics and Christianity in general out there and you have to be careful from where you source your information. I hope that what I have to tell you will get one foot started on the right path for your journey within.
I think the system is setup to marginalize these ideas. I’ve read PhD professors write about my ideas (Guthrie)… so… idk how more “out” it’s going to get there. Someone with political clout would have to push the ideas. However, 2015 is blogosphere territory…
Yeah, I dunno. I like to push the envelope a little bit, but only in search for truth. Reminds me of the movie Conspiracy Theory with Mel Brooks. I figure in my world of sensory input, I’ll try to shoot laser beams of thought out into the corners of unseen chaos in hopes of finding an unobstructed path.
My philosophy is the opposite of plausible deniability, but plausibility. I could be wrong about this here or there, but no single part of my argument is contingent on just one piece. I try to see if I can find the common elements that would hold the theory together from what is plausibly true. I figure if I get enough “right facts”, people either will not comment on it, or not correct me on the wrong things and be quite in hopes I won’t discover more truth.
I like to think Sophia was an allegory. In fact, I think just as The Theogeny birthed all the Greek debates about religion and reality, Sophia was a way of people birthing their own ideas about reasoned reality. That’s what I think gnosis is. Reverse engineering religion.
holy shnikey’s. He just went into 1st causes, and thoughts (which are 1st aristotle causes) and tied it into Egyptian/Sanskrit shit that I was reading about with the Cult of Isis (of which I want to see in LA at the Pompeii exhibit!) and then went into love/hate ying/yang Parmenides philosophy. Yeah, I know my shit, and I’ve been reading about the mysteries. I think what happened is these ancient philosophers were high classed travellers who studied other cultures belief systems and shared the knowledge back at home and tried to psycho analyze it (or philosophize it).
while I don’t buy all the stuff in the video. My theory on the Universe and his inter connectedness that violates General Relativity and is observed in Quantum Entanglement? I think… is the Higgs Boson field acting as a wave as if in another dimensional plane we cannot fully see giving everything it’s mass. Changes in our plane, we don’t see; because it’s happening in a fluid like field in the Higgs plane.
But… wtfdik? I’m not a physicist, just a hobbyist.
last response. Finished the video. It hits on Henosis about the big bang, how we all start with this “feeling” which I like to posit as pneuma. I assumed that the Pineal gland was the source of this pneuma, but I was schooled on that, so I don’t think that anymore. But, I do believe our consciousness is experienced as if we have a filter on, but we ultimately derive from the same conscious source. Sometimes we can transcend our barriers and observe this inter connectedness that I like to dub Henosis, but some others call Ego Death.
R: Bingo!… You’re spot on about our unity. You see, the biblical narrative of the attainment of the knowledge of Good and Evil is about the birth of the illusion of the ego. Everything in this universe is made by God, and God is in everything and everyone, and it is the attachment to this physical world and our mortal lives as individuals, often blinded to this unity, that the ego wants. “I am the body” is what it wants us to think, and that our lives are about accomplishing the mortal pleasures of sex, food, drugs, etc and that the body is who we really are. The ego is the devil who was the first to want to be separate from God.
R: All evil can be traced back to the ego (loving ourselves over each other, ignorant that we are our neighbors and they are us and we are God), and it is this ego that we must destroy in order to become one with Christ spiritually. This is what God sent Jesus to do: spread the understanding of non-duality to abolish the ignorance.
R: Look up the history of the Pharisees, they were seen as the closest people to God in the eyes of the public, but Jesus knew that their elaborate displays of humility were merely a guise to feed their ego and be looked up to by the “lesser people.”
R: These same teaching of non-duality–the fact that all of us are equal and one with God, from the poorest of the poor to the richest of the rich–was taught in Asian cultures through the Christ that had merged with Buddha and Krishna as they sought understand the order of the universe. Even Einstein got spiritual and began to write quite differently in the later epoch of his life because of it. He sought to prove that, as far as the universe goes, what you see is what you get, but the deeper he looked the more he found he was wrong.
R: The meaning of life is to love everyone as much as you can, and to eliminate the ego, to merge with God and find the Kingdom of Heaven within yourself. You can get to heaven right now, right here on Earth. This alone is my favorite hidden treasure I’ve ever uncovered through my search of conspiracies.
R: If you’re more interested, I invite you to check out this book called The Mystic Christ (http://www.amazon.com/The-Mystic-Christ-Ethan-Walker/dp/0972931708). I found out about it after diving into one of the Gnosticism sites. I also do not trust the tektonics website you linked to me.
Ye I don’t trust tekton too much either but I respect the effort. I take a less Christi myth approach to it all, but the body thing. Yeah, that’s all in the Dionysius mysteries, bachich death of a god that we consumed to experience the divine spark. Yeah, cool, I feel like I’ve been studying correctly the common theme 🙂
R: Well that makes me glad. By no means was I trying to make you believe in Christ and I certainly feel as though religion is completely unnecessary to understand our divinity. I hope I was able to help you find something of good use or help you get to where you want to be 🙂
oh yeah, I don’t necessarily believe in happiness here on earth via this divine knowledge in itself. One can realize henosis and not be enjoying one’s life. Rather, know that one’s divine spirit is eternal and then the person should probably just adopt Stoic philosophy to get through it. I’m still not 100% on that one, apparently stoic’s believed in logos, which I do as well, but beyond that, I haven’t read they attributed anything to an afterlife.
You and I are the same entity. Before we came to realize the oneness of everything, we believed in ego and the self. Your consciousness is from the from the same source as mine was birthed from. When we move on, we merely return to it? That’s my belief. That we achieve a state of transcendence or oneness or henosis, kind of like an omega point. Where the entirety of the universe is complete and whole again (possibly at the end of time, or we just return to this divine fire/logos] and everyone realizes everyone elses thoughts as one vs being experienced through these separate individuals.
So in essence, if two people realize it and meet each other; they are in essence meeting themselves.
Some of the mystical healing shit in that video… idk. I’m a Deist. I think the Universe is hard coded a way and set on a course. We come to realize god not through religious texts, but by understanding nature. As the natural philosophers put it,the divine fire or spirit of the Universe is the constant flux of energy. This movement of energy is an intelligent movement, aka stoic logos. It is this pandeistic intelligence that I think we become one with. It’s this very study of this divine fire that the philosophers were studying. Thales called it water (flux/fluidity) who btw visited Egypt. Anaximenes called it density, and the shifting of densities is the fire that spreads apart and affects these molecules of density. Pythagoras believe we can explain the movement and densities with what he believed he discovered as divine math. Heraclitus really hit the nail on the head with diametric duality [perfect opposites] and proportions really being the one and same in a closed system [IMO]. He also hit the nail on the head that no two moments in time are ever the same as the eternal flow of the river of time (divine fire) is constant. I like to think that opens up the possibility of cataloging the contents of the Universe in a systematic way when considering Democritus atomicity principle. If one looks at it, our very fucking bodies are atomic models based around what, DNA and a birth place at a specific moment in time. That is what makes “us”, but our pneuma was breathed in by this divine fire IMO. Christianity also calls this bastardized version of the Divine Fire, the Holy Spirit.
I don’t really buy [in the video] the internal ability to change the external world through mind. What I do believe in however is our ability to effect change in reality through thought via action. Aristotlle’s First causation rule, which lead him as well as St Thomas Aquinas to the First Mover, which I call the flux of time. However, I DO believe 100% in the allegory of the cave. Just as our eyes have evolved to see what the sun has shed light on, our eyes are as if watching a movie played on a cave wall. The quality of the film is what we perceive to be reality, our eyes are our lenses and they only see what the sun wants it to see. Point is, I think a lot of early mysticism, self discovery, astronomy, realization of oneness, got started when people consumed things like mind altering substances Kykeon; no matter what they were, and came to realize different states of mind and points of view and considered that maybe the way they viewed the world was along one specific viewpoint. I’m not saying these were necessary to have these points of views, because apparently Aristotle denounced the Eleusinian Mysteries because of the inability to talk about what was involved in the mysteries by penalty of death. However, what was central to the story is the concept of the divine body [generally sacrament of some sort which represents the Earth] dying and resurrecting so that we may have life!
R: “JESUS was a radical nonviolent revolutionary who hung around with lepers hookers and crooks; wasn’t american and enver psoke englihs; was anti-wealth anti-death penalty anti-public prayer (M 6:5); but was never anti-gay, never mentioned abortion or birth control. never called the poor lazy, never justified torture, never fought for tax cuts for the wealthiest nazarenes. Never asked a leper for a copay; and was a long-haried brown-skinned homeless community organizing anti-slut-shaming middle eastern jew.”
When you have a lot of books written by a lot of different authors who claimed to have met the same man (http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/index.html) and no one bothers to compile it properly into a canon until a few hundred years later to find a commonality amongst it all (Constantine). I think you end up with modern day brainstorming session, where the end product is a highly polished and a popular product.
R: Jesus Seminar
yeah, I’ve been reading about Apollonius, I think Jesus Christo Myth is an epic cycle in the making. Similar to how the Greek’s viewed the larger than life Macedonians and Achilles. I wrote a huge blog/reddit entry on it, I was thinking it was worthy of a doctorate thesis. It’s all conjecture atm, but based on the ideas that were evolving around the time of Jesus
reminds me of the Gospel of Q, and how the Gospel of Thomas re confirmed a lot of teachings. However, this assembly… I’m not sure if it’s intentions were secular. It’s almost as if they are wishing to do their own nicean creed vs acknowledging it might be it’s own epic
The assembly was scholarly, as they sort of checked opinions at the door. Instead, they identified the areas of the four canonical gospels that likely derived from Q, observed the biases and aims of each of the canonicals, and then cross referenced them with existing texts, surviving non-canonical gospels, etc. More than a few of the scholars weren’t even “Christian” in any conventional sense, but were rather professors and research scholars (doctoral level) of new and Old Testament studies, broader religious studies, or even just archaeology and languages.
That’s cool, but I’m sure Constantine had a similar setup. Its just today you can’t exclude academics and history has been rife w edits. I really like there voting system, but trying to do an all secular study… That’s another thing. But idk I’m going to read it more, don’t worry. Its certainly going in my repertoire just like Josh McDowell
I’m going to a Pompeii exhibit at the Cali sci center today
R: I see your point about the Jesus myth. The important thing to consider is that it is deeply embedded in Jewish/Hebrew myth as well, as many of the accounts/gospels were fabricated BY Jews in order to advance their new sect of Judaism (not yet called Christianity). We see mirrorings Abraham’s life, Moses’ life, etc in many of the narratives that are overlaid upon the historical aspects.
I concur. Glad we can have a civil intelligent discussion. I’m still open to a historical Jesus myself but I’m trying to do it through negative inference
I’ve been using philosophy to posit testable theories that I try to model. My theory so far is so ambiguous its almost impossible to disprove… Which makes it a bad theory tbh, but I did put a test up, physical records other than word of mouth deed recording. But maybe that’s impossible. Maybe Rome just didn’t keep records that would be needed to verify
tbh, the Jesus Seminar is kind of what I’m doing right now on philosophy. i’m reading 3 to 4 PhD sourced treatises on early philosophy, and trying to find their commonality. I figure I’ll investigate fringe points and verify their validity. Similar in a way to negative inference. I’m trying to remove the inconsistencies, but I’m also expanding my sphere of context to include government, and political events at the times of these various ideas.
I think Roman Philosophy (which your book “Peter Singer, Writings on an Ethical Life” is more along the lines of) is post Greek philosophy, decline of metaphysical studies and focus on decline and religious meaning. Whether you buy that or not, what seems to have been transferred to Roman philosophy is Ethics [Stoicism primarily, but also Epicureanism, but also Eleatic ideas of non existence]… which speak strongly in Christianity.
I’m a bit off atm, but that was a mixed half intelligent response
forgive me, but the main ideas are there if I got the themes/contexts wrong
I meant to say stoic self denial is in Christianity. It’s a common theme that arose out of slavery. I find it more ethical form of thought, ironically; I see a connection with using Christianity as a tool for slaves to get them to accept their fate through self denial and things like the serenity prayer. So the very concept of stoic self denial is a double edged sword. It basically says, accept your fate, and love it because it could be worse.
I think it gave rise to the golden rule though
this is exactly what i’m doing
I see a history of ideas with Christianity that preceded Christianity. Using logic, I subtract those ideas (negative inference) that preceded Christianity and look at the “noise” left over, that’s the real Christ.
not trying to find commonality 2000 years afterwards