Is the Jesus story an astrological allegory?

The study of religious or heroic legends and tales. One constant rule of mythology is that whatever happens amongst the gods or other mythical beings was in one sense or another a reflection of events on earth. Recorded myths and legends, perhaps preserved in literature or folklore, have an immediate interest to archaeology in trying to unravel the nature and meaning of ancient events and traditions.

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Postby Minimalist » Tue Feb 05, 2008 4:05 pm

Romulus and Remus were thrown into a river, too. So was Osiris. The motif gets used over and over.

It's just easier to envision a story about Ahmose morphing into something else. That's my take on it, anyway.
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

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Postby Ishtar » Tue Feb 05, 2008 4:06 pm

From Wiki:


A Neo-Assyrian text from the seventh century BC purporting to be Sargon's autobiography asserts that the great king was the illegitimate son of a priestess. In the Neo-Assyrian account Sargon's birth and his early childhood are described thus:

“ My mother was a high priestess, my father I knew not. The brothers of my father loved the hills. My city is Azupiranu, which is situated on the banks of the Euphrates. My high priestess mother conceived me, in secret she bore me. She set me in a basket of rushes, with bitumen she sealed my lid. She cast me into the river which rose over me. The river bore me up and carried me to Akki, the drawer of water. Akki, the drawer of water, took me as his son and reared me. Akki, the drawer of water, appointed me as his gardener. While I was a gardener, Ishtar granted me her love, and for four and […] years I exercised kingship.[14] ”

The image of Sargon as a castaway set adrift on a river resembles the better-known birth narrative of Moses. Scholars such as Joseph Campbell and Otto Rank have compared the 7th century BC Sargon account with the obscure births of other heroic figures from history and mythology, including Karna, Oedipus, Paris, Telephus, Semiramis, Perseus, Romulus, Gilgamesh, Cyrus, Jesus, and others.....[see my comment]



... in other words, the Hidden Child archetype.
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Postby zale » Wed Feb 06, 2008 3:05 am

Ishtar wrote:The thing we have to remember that this is a secret teaching, and thus not available to most priests and also the reason why the real meaning is cloaked in metaphor and allegory.

An initiation is a very real, life changing experience - much more so than just the simple baptism we receive in a church these days. The church's baptism is symbolic of rebirth. In a shamanic (and thus possibly Mystery School or Gnostic) initiation, you actually are reborn in a very real sense. .


You could be right. I may have problems understanding this as I am a 100% atheist, so it all seems silly. But I do grant you that true beliefs in god were important in the past, just as they are important to many parts of the world to today ( but not in most of Europe, thank God :wink: )
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Postby Ishtar » Wed Feb 06, 2008 4:21 am

Yes, I see you're in Croatia, Zale! I think you must be our only member (contributing anyway) who's from there! :lol:

I'm in the UK, about half an hour south from London, in Kent - we call it the Garden of England and the women are known as Kentish Maids or Maids of Kent, depending upon which side of the River Medway we are born.

(That was probably more information than you needed!)
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Postby zale » Wed Feb 06, 2008 4:58 am

Ishtar wrote:Yes, I see you're in Croatia, Zale! I think you must be our only member (contributing anyway) who's from there! :lol:

I'm in the UK, about half an hour south from London, in Kent - we call it the Garden of England and the women are known as Kentish Maids or Maids of Kent, depending upon which side of the River Medway we are born.

(That was probably more information than you needed!)


Well, I almost did marry a Kentish maid about 10 years ago... :wink:

About Croatia, tis one of the few European places where religion is often taken seriously (historic reasons, recent wars etc). Even in scientific circles it is not advisable to declare oneself as a nonbeliever... :?
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Postby Ishtar » Wed Feb 06, 2008 5:32 am

zale wrote:Well, I almost did marry a Kentish maid about 10 years ago... :wink:


Well, you should have tried one of us Maids of Kent. We are far superior! :lol:

About Croatia, tis one of the few European places where religion is often taken seriously (historic reasons, recent wars etc). Even in scientific circles it is not advisable to declare oneself as a nonbeliever... :?

Gosh...sounds tricky!

But perhaps I should explain something about what I mean when I use the word 'gods'?

As I'm sure you know, before any religions existed, the practice of shamanism was a worldwide system of contacting and working the spirit world. This was (and still is) an equal working partnership - so there was no such thing as worshipping these spirits. It was (and still is) entirely voluntary, so there was (and still is) no such thing as being taken over or possessed by them, the latter being a Christian invention.

The Indians referred to their spirits as devas, and the Greeks called them 'daemons'. Then somehow along the line, someone started to refer to them as gods, and that caught on. Then someone else got the idea of worshipping these gods, and putting them on plinths and pedestals as statues (which, I should think, the spirits found hysterically funny!).

Then a bit later on, someone else got the idea of turning all these spirits/gods into one God, and so we then had monotheism. And the rest, as they say, is history.

You may have already known all that. If not, I hope it helps. :lol:
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Postby Ishtar » Wed Feb 06, 2008 7:45 am

Here we have an archetypal motif that shows a Greek influence to the Moses myth.

As mentioned earlier, Moses holds up the serpent on a cross and says: "If you look on this image and believe, you will be saved by it."

But Apollo's son Asclepius, known as a healer, also held a serpent wound around a stick and his cult was popular in Greece from 300 BC onwards:

Wiki quote: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asclepius

Starting about 300 BC, the cult of Asclepios grew very popular. His healing temples were called asclepieion; pilgrims flocked to them to be healed. They slept overnight and reported their dreams to a priest the following day. He prescribed a cure, often a visit to the baths or a gymnasium.

Asclepius' most famous sanctuary was in Epidaurus in Northeastern Peloponnese. Another famous "asclepieion" was on the island of Kos, where Hippocrates, the legendary doctor, may have begun his career. Other asclepieions were situated in Trikala, Gortys (in Arcadia), and Pergamum in Asia.

In honor of Asclepios, snakes were often used in healing rituals. Non-venomous snakes were left to crawl on the floor in dormitories where the sick and injured slept.


We can also see another common motif between the story of Asclepius and that of Jesus being wounded in his side and bleeding during his crucifixion.

http://www.worthynews.com/news-features ... srael.html

Greek mythology stated that Asclepius had the power to heal the sick and to bring the dead back to life by drawing blood out from the side of the goddess of justice.


The Gospel of John goes on to say:

"The Son of Man must be lifted up as the serpent was lifted up by Moses in the Wilderness."

So could Moses have been Greek?
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Postby Minimalist » Wed Feb 06, 2008 9:13 am

So could Moses have been Greek?



No, but the people who made up the story could have been. Hellenistic influence is a key feature of Davies', et al, point of view.
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

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Postby Ishtar » Wed Feb 06, 2008 10:31 am

Minimalist wrote:
So could Moses have been Greek?



No, but the people who made up the story could have been. Hellenistic influence is a key feature of Davies', et al, point of view.


I know! Tee hee. :lol:

I only said it to wind you up!

I think he's a likely to be the Greek Ascelpius as the Egyptian Ahmose!
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Postby Minimalist » Wed Feb 06, 2008 10:50 am

If it wasn't for Davies' insistence that it was "all" made up after the exile, I think I could buy into his theory. In fairness, he published his book the year before the Tel Dan stele was found but he really should factor that into the story.

Sitting there and claiming that it is a modern forgery or a mis-translation seems to be denying the obvious.
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

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Postby Ishtar » Wed Feb 06, 2008 11:05 am

Totally...but I think he does it by ignoring the linguists' case. What many don't understand is that they have methods other than analysing the story or dating bits of papyrus to work out what was said when.

I don't quite understand it myself, but it's all to do with morphology, and these things called phonemes (which is to words what atoms are to molecules - or is it the other way round?) which they compare with those of neighbouring areas.

I think why the Bible thumpers have got away with this sleight of hand routine for so long is because they've always claimed the uniqueness of Palestine, and there was no-one like them in the area. But they weren't, and so that's why linguists can work out what writing belongs when by looking at neighbouring states.

I think that's it anyway..... :?: Or something like it...
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Postby Minimalist » Wed Feb 06, 2008 11:48 am

But they weren't, and so that's why linguists can work out what writing belongs when by looking at neighbouring states.


Yes, but one of the other things we've learned is that Aram-Damascus, Edom and Moab all emerged at roughly the same time. For whatever reason, the city states which became Phoenecia seemed to survive the Sea People...perhaps they allied themselves with them? After Egyptian retrenchment, the Phoenecians expanded into what is now northern Israel.

The others arose later out of the debris of the Late Bronze Age Canaanite towns. Maybe we need to blame the Phoenecians?
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

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Postby Ishtar » Wed Feb 06, 2008 12:23 pm

Oh...I thought the Phoenicians were the Sea People?

Probably another dumb question, but it would certainly explain why they survived their attacks?
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Postby Minimalist » Wed Feb 06, 2008 12:39 pm

Sidon and Tyre seem to predate the Sea People....by a lot.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sidon

Sidon was inhabited since 4000 BC and perhaps as early as Neolithic times (6000 - 4000 B.C.). It was one of the most important Phoenician cities, and may have been the oldest.


http://www.middleeast.com/tyre.htm

Five Millennia of History
Founded at the start of the third millennium B.C., Tyre originally consisted of a mainland settlement and a modest island city that lay a short distance off shore. But it was not until the first millennium B.C. that the city experienced its golden age.
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

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Postby Ishtar » Tue Feb 12, 2008 3:15 am

This is a fascinating and well-researched article which actually takes apart every single claim made by Christians for the historicity of Jesus. If you have time, I suggest you read it all.

In the meantime, this bit is particularly pertinent or discussions here:

http://www.jdstone.org/cr/files/part2th ... jesus.html


Now, besides the books of the New Testament, and besides the epistles relating to Clement, Ignatius and Polycarp, there is only one more Christian religious work which Christians claim as historical evidence of Jesus, namely the Teaching of the Twelve Apostles also known as the Didache. All other early Christian religious works are either wholly rejected by modern Christians or are at least recognized as not being primary sources as regards Jesus.

The Didache began as a sectarian Jewish document, probably written during the period of turmoil in c. 70 C.E. Its earliest form consisted of moral teachings and predictions of the destruction of the current world order. This earliest version, which obviously did not mention Jesus, was taken over by Christians who heavily edited and altered it, adding a story of Jesus and rules of worship for early Christian communities. Scholars estimate that the earliest Christian version of the _Didache_ could not have been written much later than 95 C.E. It probably only reached its final form around c. 120 C.E. It appears to have served an isolated Christian community in Syria as a "Church Order" during the period c. 100 - 130 C.E.

However, there is no evidence that its story of Jesus was based on any reliable sources, and as we have mentioned, the earliest Jewish version had nothing to do with Jesus. In fact, this document provides evidence that the myth of Jesus grew gradually. Like the Gospel of Mark and the early versions of Gospel of Matthew, the Jesus story in the Didache makes no mention of a virgin birth. It makes no mention of the fantastic miracles which were later attributed to Jesus. Although Jesus is referred to as a "son" of God, it appears that this term is being used figuratively.

The evidence we have concerning the origin of the crucifixion myth suggests that one of the things leading to this myth was the fact that the cross was the astrological symbol of the Vernal Equinox which occurs near Passover, when Jesus was believed to have been killed.

It is thus not surprising to find that the story in the Didache makes no mention of Jesus being crucified, although it mentions a cross in the sky as a sign of Jesus. The twelve apostles mentioned in the full title of the Didache do not appear as twelve real disciples of Jesus and the term clearly refers to the twelve sons of Jacob representing the twelve tribes of Israel. Thus the Didache provides vital clues concerning the growth of the Jesus myth, but it certainly does not provide any evidence of an historical Jesus.
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