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Saturday, July 05, 2008

Ancient Tablet Evidence of Jesus Myth?

An ancient Hebrew tablet is creating a stir after certain scholars identified it as containing a pre-Christian account of the awaited Jewish messiah's death and resurrection after three days. If this artifact is genuine, from the era claimed, and actually says what is asserted, the discovery clearly demonstrates that the idea of a messiah, savior or divine redeemer dying and rising after three days existed decades before the alleged advent of Jesus Christ. This dying-and-resurrecting motif is one of a number that various writers and scholars have claimed demonstrate Jesus to represent not a "historical" personage but a mythical concept found in religious ideologies and mythologies long prior to the so-called Christian era.

A recent article in the New York Times expresses caution concerning the find, as it has not been conclusively proved to be from the era in question, some years to decades prior to the common era, or to discuss what it is alleged to relate. However, the article also concludes that if the tablet is truly what it is purported to be, then:

"Resurrection after three days becomes a motif developed before Jesus, which runs contrary to nearly all scholarship."

The idea of this motif existing before Christ "runs contrary to nearly all scholarship," except for that of "Jesus mythicists," including in my books, The Christ Conspiracy, Suns of God, Who Was Jesus? and Christ in Egypt: The Horus-Jesus Connection.

In fact, if genuine, this tablet would constitute not "prophecy" of Christ's alleged advent but a primary source for a BLUEPRINT used in the creation of the fictional Jesus character - a theme I repeatedly address in my work. Indeed, the educated Jews of the Diaspora, including the very important Egyptian city of Alexandria, were undoubtedly well aware of the ubiquitous story of the god Osiris, "Lord of Resurrections," who was said to have died and been resurrected after three days, as stated in ancient Egyptian texts that predate the alleged time of Jesus by hundreds to thousands of years. It may well be that the Jewish priesthood in Judea - a mere stone's throw from their many brethren in Egypt - were also quite knowledgeable of this highly important god and his resurrection, which promised hope to hundreds of millions of Egyptians over a period of several thousand years, long prior to the purported time of Jesus Christ. If so, we would logically expect from their own religion-making efforts just such writings as are alleged to be found on this extraordinary tablet.
New York Times
July 6, 2008

Tablet Ignites Debate on Messiah and Resurrection

By ETHAN BRONNER

JERUSALEM — A three-foot-tall tablet with 87 lines of Hebrew that scholars believe dates from the decades just before the birth of Jesus is causing a quiet stir in biblical and archaeological circles, especially because it may speak of a messiah who will rise from the dead after three days.

If such a messianic description really is there, it will contribute to a developing re-evaluation of both popular and scholarly views of Jesus, since it suggests that the story of his death and resurrection was not unique but part of a recognized Jewish tradition at the time.

The tablet, probably found near the Dead Sea in Jordan according to some scholars who have studied it, is a rare example of a stone with ink writings from that era — in essence, a Dead Sea Scroll on stone.

It is written, not engraved, across two neat columns, similar to columns in a Torah. But the stone is broken, and some of the text is faded, meaning that much of what it says is open to debate.

Still, its authenticity has so far faced no challenge, so its role in helping to understand the roots of Christianity in the devastating political crisis faced by the Jews of the time seems likely to increase....

Given the highly charged atmosphere surrounding all Jesus-era artifacts and writings, both in the general public and in the fractured and fiercely competitive scholarly community, as well as the concern over forgery and charlatanism, it will probably be some time before the tablet’s contribution is fully assessed....

Ms. Yardeni, who analyzed the stone along with Binyamin Elitzur, is an expert on Hebrew script, especially of the era of King Herod, who died in 4 B.C. The two of them published a long analysis of the stone more than a year ago in Cathedra, a Hebrew-language quarterly devoted to the history and archaeology of Israel, and said that, based on the shape of the script and the language, the text dated from the late first century B.C....

"This should shake our basic view of Christianity," [Knohl] said as he sat in his office of the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem where he is a senior fellow in addition to being the Yehezkel Kaufman Professor of Biblical Studies at Hebrew University. "Resurrection after three days becomes a motif developed before Jesus, which runs contrary to nearly all scholarship. What happens in the New Testament was adopted by Jesus and his followers based on an earlier messiah story."...

Mr. Knohl said...[the tablet] strongly suggested that a savior who died and rose after three days was an established concept at the time of Jesus....

86 comments:

Naiya said...

Hardly surprising... The common desire of humans to be redeemed or saved from a source without has always appealed to the imaginations of the spiritually lazy indoctrinated into a mentality of slavery to an angry deity - as well as those who would profit by their devotion and fear. Messianic teachings will continue to persist, even into oblivion - if we don't figure out how to inspire the other perennial human desire - freedom.

Regardless of the authenticity of the tablet, common sense will tell us that the mythos of the life, death and resurrection are imminently more powerful in the human psyche than a historical fact ever could be. The Christos or Horus (the spiritual product of divine union of Mother/Father in the heart) - is a direct experience requiring no intercession on behalf of anyone. Look at the symbolism of the Anahata (Heart) Chakra (or the star of 'David')... The blueprint of the very meaning of freedom exists right there. Every religion makes every exerted effort to point away from this very simple powerful truth, though amazingly, tellingly, all their mythologies contain it.

I'd like it if they found a clay tablet that actually said that...

David Deley said...

Believers will just say it reinforces prophecy thereby proving Jesus is real.

(Just like when I point out the 9 reasons the TF is a blatant forgery, they simply reply, "No it's not." and we reach an impasse.)

Acharya S said...

Thanks, David. That's why I headed off that unscientific assessment by saying that it is not prophecy but a blueprint used by the creators of the Christ myth, a contention I have made in detail in my several books.

But, of course, I am well aware of the "No, it's not" retort when blind believers are confronted with scientific analysis. It's all they have in their last resort.

Neophyte said...

First, a question.

The article states,
"Resurrection after three days becomes a motif developed before Jesus, which runs contrary to nearly all scholarship." Does this mean a motif in the strictly Jewish lexicon or generally speaking?

Second, we should be mindful of the recent deceptive climate of fraud in the disbursement of artifacts. If this should be deemed a fraud after scientific examination, what would have served as a motive?

If it is declared authentic, what would be the popular interpretation of its import? I think it could bolster irrational claims about Christ's death and resurrection as sacred fulfillment of eschatology (not noted elsewhere in scripture).

More logical and reasoned conclusions of prior mythical and literary motifs, especially of Hellenistic origin, could be drowned out in the hoopla! In our bogus media climate, you betchya!.

Anonymous said...

"This should shake our basic view of Christianity" is the red flag statement in this story.
It's a fake, just like "Solomons Tablet" and other such "discoveries".

Acharya S said...

Yes, one would be tempted to dismiss this discovery as a "fake," like the so-called James Ossuary and Jesus Family Tomb.

However, the big difference is that those artifacts were supposed to shore up Christianity, as more of the same profitable relics and tourist industry that has gone on for centuries, while this find would in fact demonstrate that Christianity is not unique and is essentially a rehash of earlier religions and mythologies. In reality, this artifact completely goes against the perspective fervently upheld by the mainstream authorities and vested interests.

In this regard, then, the tablet is far less suspect than previous certain forgeries.

vincent said...

Naiya said
A good summation and I can only add that as a atheist I am a good person because I have this small,inward belief that my self will exist later and all my good spirit will prevail.

Anonymous said...

is this zionist propaganda? I am not a believer but Anatoli Fomenko states that all the dates in history are false!!! You try to demolish the Bible with this?

Anonymous said...

You try to demolish this with that crackpot Fomenko??

Very respectable source - NOT.

Anonymous said...

All belief is the personal kingdom of the believer. Most interpretations of Archaeological finds are almost as baseless as religion. What needs to be looked at is the intent. If you don't care for Jesus well then don't by into it... leave the true believers alone...

Acharya S said...

"...leave the true believers alone..."

The door swings both ways. Why go out of your way to post a comment here? Leave the nonbelievers alone.

Bill Rayton said...

Why is this news...?

At university years ago, I had a very erudite professor who, as a scholar-priest, had helped translate some of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

He'd been an ordained minister for many years when he got the call to help decode some of the scrolls. He told us that what he read there destroyed his Christianity and should destroy everyone else's belief also: the Dead Sea Scrolls told exactly what this stone tablet is reported to say. That a Messianic death adn resurrection is indeed a very ancient myth that predates AD Jesus by many hundreds, if not thousands of years. This ancient tablet evidence is not new evidence.

Not a conspiracy theorist by any means but a man who was devoted to truth and learning in the best scholarly traditions, he also told us that the Vatican locked away the most revealing Scrolls because of the damage they will do to Christianity.

As a result, my professor left his ministry - or rather, he was unfrocked when he started speaking and writing about the real text on these scrolls.

I knew this man well, he did not need to lie or fabricate tall tales - he is not that sort of man. He has the air of a highly intelligent, extremely well-read and meticulous scholar who is sadly resigned that he will probably never see the deluded world wake up to the fact that AD Jesus and his divinity is based in a complete myth.

The Christian west has far too much invested in this Christianity to let go of its myths. Our whole civilisation is built on layer upon layer of religious fable that was largely politically expedient for successive kings and rulers to adopt.

Christianity, in essence, is a weird offshoot of Judaism. I imagine that if we didn't have Christianity we'd have some other archaic jumble of myths ruling the show. We could still be worshipping Mithras or Horus or woodsprites: the need for religion in humankind is hardwired and ineradicable.

Anonymous said...

Watch the first part of the movie Zeitgeist and you will laugh at the surprise in this article. Its on youtube for free. BTW, the Messiah prophecy of the Jewish people at the time is most directly related to their Zoroastrian influence under Babylonian captivity. That's also when Satan became an evil opposite and not something like God's trial lawyer.

Mriana said...

OK here is what I don't get... Why do so many Xians believe their story of a saviour is unique when so many previous stories are similar? Why do they deny the similarity by saying "similar is not the same"? Are they so blinded that they cannot see what is before their eyes? Why do they not see that just because the names, places, and cultural aspects are changed doesn't mean it is not the same story? Why are they so adament that Jesus actually lived and was/is real, when so many stories are similar? How can they believe the myth of a person who died is still alive? Why can't they see any of the things pointed out to them, esp when they seem so obvious?

That is a lot of questions, but their beliefs make no sense in light of the evidence and this could reinforce much of the evidence that the Christ myth is just a more modern version of past myths. Thing is, they still won't wake up to the truth of it being a myth. I just don't get it.

leave the true believers alone...

I'm with Acharya. Why did you come here? Why do you even believe a myth is real to begin with? Just what makes you believe in another version of Zeus and then come here to comment about us bothering you? You came here. We didn't go to you. Like many other religious people, you make no sense.

Anonymous said...

I don't consider the caliber of this new evidence to be any different from what we've already seen about the bible or jesus. Yes, it could be evidence or proof against the existance of Jesus. But there is already evidence that Jesus was a myth based on a lot of things that are already known about the bible (some of the texts of the bible are copied word for word from earlier myths or egyption poetry).
In any event, I don't think it will be the death nail for the Jesus story. Believers will rationalize things away (for example, "oh, well just because this might or might not be evidence of another guy ressurecting doesn't mean that Jesus also did not do so). Or that maybe ressurrections were common in that day.. Who knows.
Only thing this new piece of evidence will do is stir up debate and be used as ammunition to inflame those who already believe. In my opinion, no conclusion should be given to this new piece of evidence, and only the archeological facts should be given out to the public and then the public should then decide on their own what to make of it. It is still premature to make a decision about this tablet because - 1. there are words that are missing, 2. it has not been peer reviewed, and 3. The authenticity has not been verified by several other independent parties (just because an article says it has been, doesn't mean it has been, we have to see the scientific methods used to generate those reports and also know who has peer reviewed it).

Anonymous said...

does this actually help, the thesis (James Arthur, John Allegro) that many "mythos" archetypes, were used to "hide" the "real purpose" of the NT, to "encode" an ancient SECRET ritual (traced to the pharaohs, etc - (highest priests, only, need apply !) of use of a psychoactive mushroom (the consuming of, the "flesh of the gods") all hidden, all over, the bible

1) Adam and Eve, "ate" of the tree of knowledge (mushroom) and "their eyes were opened" (dilated, during the "enthoegenic phase") and perceptions of "the real world" are altered..and the spirit world, are revealed, mysteriously

2) Moses and the Israelites, "eating manna", magically appearing, "overnight", off of, the ground..

3) "Jesus" discussing the "act of cannibalism", for his followers, to consume his "body and blood" (tissue, and juice) of the (real relgious event- last supper ritual encoding) psychedelic mushroom consumption..

3) John (book of revelation) eating a "sweet, and sour scroll" the angel gave him, and THEN his visions of the future, are "activated"..

4) Maria sabina, ( R. Gordon Wasson) describing the sacred mushroom ritual, as "eating the flesh of the gods", and their spirit "speaks to her" ( while under the influence of psilocybin)

I think that this new evidence ( the tablet/ and discussed translation) gives credence to an "earlier myth" (before the NT/"Jesus" dates) of "death/resurrection" cycle of the god/nature, with the secret rituals of the "priestly class" ( which, both Freud, and others) both note that Moses (judaism) have, DIRECTLY descend, from..

Moses "adopted father" ( the pharaoh) was THE high priest ( highest "secret" level) of all Egyptian religion hierarchy..

James Arthur, (author: "Mushrooms and Mankind ") has documented many mushroom/ symbols (the pillars of temple in karnac, etc. ) in the religious artifacts, of Egypt..

remember also that the early Christians, the gnostics, practiced a 'secret ritual", and openly discussed the fact that Jesus was only a metaphor, NOT a historical figure..

long story short, I see that news, of earlier "suffering/resurrecting Messiah" evidence / mythology, to allow for the "later" inclusion / fusion, of the "encoding of the secret mushroom ritual" that allegro has written about..

these two paths most definitely co-incide, with the "modern" Christianity, except they will openly deny, that the "last supper" would ever be, just a mushroom trip..

John Allegro (author: "sacred cross, and the mushroom") claims that "Jesus", was in fact, a metaphor, for the "mushroom ritual" (a mythical, allegorical figure) and based upon previous mythologies..

keep up the "slow plod", of gaining momentum, and evidence, for the "mythical Jesus" ! good job, acharia!

the evidence is widespread, and getting clearer, by the day..

its just a wild story, never meant to be ever, considered, an historical fact..
just a way, to hide the religious experience, of a mushroom trip.. from the "ruled masses"..

thus the NT, is a document, of very complex symbology..

simple mythos (for simple minds) AND secret, hidden secrets, for the highest priestly, classes..

this evidence (the new document, artifact, and translations, etc).. may provide evidence toward one aspect, of the complex metaphor, of the various new tesment documents.. and phenomena..

and to think, the modern age, could yet dissolve, in the glow, of giant atomic mushrooms... yet..another rich, mushroom metaphor, via the book of revelations!

Anonymous said...

The one called Jesus visited Turtle Island in 1963 before leaving again for the Kingdom so he is not a fictional, nor mythological living. He has visited Turtle Island before as Wovoca gave his account & there are accounts from within Native Tribes he lived & taught them before the Europeans ever arrived.

Goodmonkey said...

"Anonymous said...
You try to demolish this with that crackpot Fomenko??

Very respectable source - NOT."

Obviously, you've never read Formenko's work, and know nothing of his background and credentials. Fomeko (and others) are among the first "non-historians" (this being their "crime") to apply statistical, scientific methods to the study of ancient history and, more to the point, the dating (true chronology) of alleged ancient events. ALL history, including so-called "secular" history, is dated based on Roman Catholic "scholarship" and a literal interpretation of the bible and the dating of the pyramids. All roads, secular and "biblical," lead to Sumer, c. 3500 BC. Coincidence? I don't agree with all of Fomeko's conclusions (New Testament written during the Middle Ages? Perhaps.), but to call him a "crackpot" is unworthy of his contribution toward understanding how little we actually know about ancient history and how much of what passes for "secular" ancient history is based on Roman Catholic forgeries and lies, unchallenged and adopted by later generations of "secular" scholars. This has very little to do with the topic at hand, other than to remind us that what we don't know about ancient history and human origins is a lot, and that so-called "secular" history and "biblical" history is a SINGLE conspiracy obfuscating and hiding the truth.

Redoubt said...

This could well be the missing myth link that connects the mythology of Christian faith to the mythology of human life. In fact, from every bit of evidence available, it may well be that the humanity myth is actually true and that there really are bipedal critters that can think and chew gum at the same time.

On the other hand, if we allow that the myth of Christ is true and the myth of the human animal, we’ll then be bound to accept the myth of Muhammad and the myth of Buddha and the myth of Sitting Bull and the myth of Columbus... and even the myth of Jack Daniels and Old No.7!

It’s probably better to believe in nothing at all and disallow any and all myths as being the ramblings of the wee people in the trunk of that old tree out back. Ya know? (I really hate them little folk and their constant telling of tall tales!)

Anonymous said...

Bloody good ink they used back then. Don't expect that today's ink will last 2000 years

Anonymous said...

Since no one can prove Jesus existed. How can it be claimed that this tablet came before?

Zeca do Rock said...

All this is completely irrelevant. Be it Horus, Krishna, Christos or whatever other name you want to call a great Avatar, the phenomenon is as old as humankind and keeps coming back though the ages...

Anonymous said...

Acharya, I'm researching the origins for the word "jew". The word seems to have come out of no where. This search began when I started asking people what a jew is. Does anyone here know? I was accused of being anti semite but I asked, "how can I be anti anything, if I don't believe it exists, or ever existed". I hope you can help us learn if such things as a jew literally exists.

Thank-you in advance

Anonymous said...

I have been dwelling on this issue for years, we all have been told and we all have read
where God is the one that created the world and all of the universe, we beleived it to be
true because we were told by older people that had knowledge on this issue, parents, grandparents, preachers and etc.

Well lets all take a look into facts and maybe some truth.

We have knowledge that the Earth is around 5 Billion years Old due to scientific studies
of age, science and scholars had created the "age" detection "test" I dont know how it works
or even the structure of such device or "test"

If God created the Earth and the universe then "God" would have to be at least the same age,
correct ? If God has always existed then where did God come from ? does God still exist ? if
so where is God ? how does God know your wants or needs ? especially with Billions of people
on Earth asking for the same results. this to me is mindblogging.

We also are told that God said many things, Look in the Bible. to me if God said things how
would anyone know it ? nobody lives today that has heard God say any scripture, after all the
Bible was written 300 years after Jesus was crucified so the Red writing we see in the Bible
is supposed to be words from God or Jesus, I am sorry but I cant remember what I said one
year ago let alone 300 years ago. the Bible was written by many Men known as prophets and these
prophets never did talk with let alone even meet God or Jesus so how could they have known any
thoughts or commands from God or Jesus ?

If God created the Earth and universe then God had to be here 5 Billion years ago, we have
been told God created the Earth just a few thousand years ago, who is correct ? Nobody knows
if God is female or Male, Nobody has ever seen God other than what appears as God to someone.
Can God actually be a form of electric genetics ? we have seen many pictures of Jesus in many
forms but not one of them are correct, Jewish people didnt have Blonde hair, blue eyes, long
faces with Beards ? I dont have any clue do you ?
We also know very little of Jesus after he became 12 years old until he was 32 years old, Big
question is why ? where was he ? what was he doing ? Nobody knows. so how would prophets know
without a doubt word for word what Jesus even said and that was 300 years after Jesus was
crucified.

The Bible has been re-written several thousand times over in many different languages and
even today is being re-written in many forms "again" the original bible was written in Hebrew
then changed to many languages and of course words were removed and some were added, "why"
some say so it would be easier to read and understand, if none of the words had been removed
from it's original writing but changed just in language form then that is understandable, but
why remove wording ? was it to change what was actually said for the time in question such
as lets say the year 1510 to fit the needs of the people, or changed in the year 2007 again
to fit the needs or the immorality issues of the people for those years in question ?

In the very beginning nothing existed in any part of the universe and beyond or that it what
we all have been told, so how does God get created from nothing ? not one person has ever seen
God so was God alive at one time ? if so where was God if nothing existed ? how was God
created ? and from where if nothing existed ?

Goodmonkey said...

"Anonymous said...
You try to demolish this with that crackpot Fomenko??

Very respectable source - NOT."

I don't think s/he was trying to "demolish" anything, but obviously you haven't read Fomenko's work, or know anything about his background, if you consider him a "crackpot." I urge readers not to be misled by this accusation, and look into Fomenko for yourselves. Personally, I put Vol 1 of his 7 volume "History: Fiction or Science" on the all time "must read" list for anyone serious about the history of chronology. Did you know that so-called "secular" history/chronology is based on a literal interpretation of the bible for the dating of the pyramids, from which ALL ancient (so-called secular) history is dated, and that much, if not most, of what we claim to know about ancient history is based on texts allegedly "discovered" as much as 1,000 years after the fact, the "originals" of which were mysterious "lost" after translation? Fomenko may not be "right" about everything (New Testament written during the Middle Ages? Well, maybe...), but his scholarship and credentials are beyond reproach.

Anonymous said...

"...leave the true believers alone..."

What, exactly is a 'true believer'? How is that different from just a 'believer'? If you're a 'true believer', does that mean your belief is true?

Luckily, they had me at the Osiris myth, a LONG time ago. I can't even justify looking at the bible as a valid reference tool. The art of redaction has been honed over many millenia..

Anonymous said...

The problem with this "find" is the fact that there were key parts of text that are completely missing. Who is going to tell us what was written if no one can read it? People will fill in the "blanks" according to their own biases and beliefs, and that's it!

HardTruth said...

... leave the true believers alone...

True believers? Surely you jest.
You know not what you believe!!

If it expects, or demands worship, it is not divine!!

Believe in that false god all you want!!

Anonymous said...

This find should persuade more people that it is time to take seriously the writings of Velikovsky and Sitchin. They represent a large body of work that supports the reported statement on the tablet.

Anonymous said...

Hugh Scofield showed how the story of turning water into wine was first told of Dionysus, and imported to Palestine around 147 BCE. The sheer extent to which Christianity draws on prior mythology from Egypt and Greece, was exhaustively studied and documented by Gerald Massey in his books: Lectures, Book of Beginnings, Natural Genesis and Ancient Egypt. Lunar and solar deities and concepts of all kinds were pressed into service. One very obvious example is in the crucifixion. Taken literally, barely 36 hours between death and resurrection needs to be billed as three days, or 'on the third day'. Of course, it goes all the way back to the three days of the new moon. Most of the 'historical details' of the Jesus story are found in Egyptian myth. We also know from studying the 'Q' gospel that all the story was a later addition. The full picture of how the solar/astrological myth was incorporated was shown in James Morgan Pryse's The Restored New Testament - once you've read that translation of the Book of Revelation, there's no need to to take apocalyptic fundamentalism seriously.

Acharya S said...

Why is this news...?

This is news because the artifact was just recently revealed to the public via a New York Times article. If genuine, this artifact would provide yet more evidence of the prefiguring of the Jesus character, revealing the three-day-dead-in-the-tomb motif to be part of a blueprint utilized by the creators of Christianity.

While the DSS do show much of the religious thought that also made it into the New Testament/Christianity, to my knowledge they say nothing about a dead-and-resurrected messiah who is raised after three days.

The tablet is highly significant for that reason, as well as its purported pre-Christian origin - if, as I repeatedly say, it is real and really says what it is alleged, etc.

He has the air of a highly intelligent, extremely well-read and meticulous scholar who is sadly resigned that he will probably never see the deluded world wake up to the fact that AD Jesus and his divinity is based in a complete myth.

He might be pleased by the existence of the movie "Zeitgeist," the first part of which is significantly based on my work.

My books are designed to demonstrate that Christianity is a combination of Judaism and Paganism. Not necessarily "weird" at all but a logical development from centuries of priestcraft.

Watch the first part of the movie Zeitgeist and you will laugh at the surprise in this article.

Since the first part of "Zeitgeist" is significantly based on my work, and since I wrote the blog you are commenting on, I see no reason for "laughing" at my purported "surprise."

What is "surprising" about this find is that, if genuine, it would constitute a primary source demonstrating that an important "Christian" motif existed before Jesus Christ purportedly existed, revealing a prefiguring that was utilized in the creation of the Christ myth.

The tablet would thus be a very big deal, because it would be a pre-Christian primary source.

But there is already evidence that Jesus was a myth

Interested parties are referred to my books, websites and videos.

TruthBeKnown.com
StellarHousePublishing.com
TBKNews.blogspot.com

There is no single nail in the coffin of Christianity, but this would be a big one, for the reasons outlined in my blog post. I agree that there could be problems proving this tablet says what is alleged, which is why I put cautions throughout my post.

Since no one can prove Jesus existed. How can it be claimed that this tablet came before?

Just as the Great Pyramid was clearly built before the alleged time of Jesus Christ, so too is this artifact purported to be. In fact, many things came before the purported time of Jesus.

All this is completely irrelevant.

Obviously, I disagree. It is completely relevant and highly important in that, if genuine, it adds to the evidence that Christ is a mythical composite, not a historical personage. The only way any of these characters "come back" is as the SUN, since they are palpably solar myths.

Anonymous said...

Hey look, just because the ancient scrolls that Constantines Rome neo-christians are missing and 2000 yrs ago there were no reporters recording or televising the jew peasant messiah homeless guy or his 12 disciples and allegedly all of this missing stuff had word for word accounts written up to 50 yrs later or more, this is no reason to doubt the validity of the NT is it?
Just because Romes massive power ownership of the civilized world had come to an end and they were looking for a new superior kingdom in the clouds, dosent mean these former barbarics wanted to have the big shot egotistical headquarters of christianity does it and noone is supposed to dount anything but have a childs fairytale faith to believe?

All we need is some real proof of the scrolls the Romans allegedly copied for the NT to create christianity. We know they already had the jew Torah and just copied it word for word but we have no NT stuff as proof other than some Dead Sea scrolls that were for the Torah only.

We know jews are the master of media but this one has to go on the Romans since we know jews hate the NT and think the Jman is a fraud.

We also know pedophile cameljock Mohammed was smoking hashish and went into a cave with the new Bible and copied it but reaarranged it to make himself the last final messiah or prophet to put all the raghead pagans under one tent using moon god Allah as a word association replacement although all the other characters and places are the same.
Jews and their media fiction no different yesterday than today. They love to lie and tell wild tales. Holohoax? WMD?

Aint religion wonderful?

Anonymous said...

LOL,

I just love the arguments made over religions. The death, the destruction, the struggle of the "believers" vs. the "un believers".

Myself, I take a much more reasoned approach, as I think I shall surely find the answer to the divinity of Jesus after I'm dead, with much less turmoil.

Larry Chasteen said...

Acharya S.:

The Pharisees considered the am ha-aretz as ignoramuses but how did the learned, sophisticated Pharisees themselves get duped into believing they had crucified a mythical Galilean peasant?

I'm going out-of-town and will check your answer on Tuesday.

Anonymous said...

Some of you here are really into the Zeitgeist movie...can that movie (or any of the other reference works alluded to) stand up to the rigors of an investigation even 1/10th as much as the authenticity of Jesus Christ has been exposed to?

If you want to see another movie that will expose some of the pagan symbolisms and beliefs, please watch (especially if you are a Velikovsky fan) http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4773590301316220374&q=%22thunderbolts+of+the+gods%22&total=17&start=0&num=10&so=0&type=search&plindex=0

I had a "religious" experience once in my life that was very profound and I came away from that with the knowledge that we live after we leave this life...in fact, we lived before we arrived here and we will continue to live after we leave. Indeed, we exist in eternity right now. How in the heck is anyone going to try to explain away that marvelous (for me) experience with a stone tablet? I have my own personal knowledge...as do countless other people!

What was Jesus Christ's message? Love, was it not...for us to love one another. What in the world is wrong with that? If it's a veangeful deity that you recoil from, take a good hard look at human nature! That's the scariest deity of all!

Anonymous said...

According to the 'Talmud of Jmmanuel'( 'Jesus'autobiography), his parents named him Esu Jmmanuel. Try looking for him under his real name. He says that he was born on 8/8/8bc. He DIDN'T die on the cross, he was rescued by Joseph of Arimethia who brought doctors to tend to him. He had recovered enough after three days to travel, to India, where there is ample evidence of his life.

Anonymous said...

The Vatican created the myth and refined it every Council of Nicea. There was so much infighting that Constantine had to call in the 'troops' to keep order. Then a sadistic pedophile named King James ordered a rewrite that pleased his agenda. The amazing thing is the credulity of people, however,they remember being dunked,tortured and killed to make them believers.

Anonymous said...

Religion has always been BIG BUSINESS and lucrative. Look how wealthy the Vatican became when people who 'gave' were mostly poor. The V promised wealthy people a special boost to Heaven if they left their wealth to the church. Which brings us to Martin Luther who objected. Religious history is juicy and full of rogues, but rarely truly spiritual souls. Look beyond myths.

Anonymous said...

One of the ways the Pharisees controlled the folks who questioned any of the rules(some 600+) was to place them under house arrest.It was called 'dying' for 3 days. If you were contrite and obedient, then you were 'resurrected' to be admitted to the community. Grumbling and disobedience were treated as a disease needing quarantine.

Anonymous said...

Esu Jmmanuel flaunted the rules and had to be eliminated as any plague would be. Also, this Universe is NOT the first and only one. Creator can and does create new universes and assigns a spiritual hierarchy to oversee each one. Also, do you not think that ancient people couldn't write fiction or material with an extreme agenda? They were just like us or we are just like them!!!

Anonymous said...

Yahweh answered the question of "IS He?" with the answer "I AM". If anyone wants proof PERSONALLY, all one has to do is to ASK God to reveal Himself to them in a personal way; He will and you will know and the TRUTH will set you free. Scripture is being fulfilled. We are fast approaching "The Last Days", those being the last days for each of us as we die and those Born Again become spiritually in the presence of Yahshua (Jesus), our Lord. Ask. You have eternal life to gain.

Museum Ethics Controversy said...

I would submit that this "ancient tablet" is probably another sensationalist scam, as is clearly indicated by the facts

(1) that no specific information is available on its provenance and

(2) that no details are provided on carbon dating of the ink.

As such, this "news" brings to mind the faked Lost-Tomb-of-Jesus "documentary" designed to make a profit off of people's fascination with the "real" Jesus, as well as the larger scandal of the biased and misleading way the Dead Sea scrolls are being presented in museum exhibits around the world, with an antisemitic expression appearing on a government-run North Carolina museum's website. See, e.g.,

http://spinozaslens.com/libet/articles/dworkin_ethicsofexhibition.htm

and

http://blog.news-record.com/staff/frontpew/archives/2008/06/dead_sea_scroll.shtml.

Acharya S said...

To repeat my response above:

Yes, one would be tempted to dismiss this discovery as a "fake," like the so-called James Ossuary and Jesus Family Tomb.

However, the big difference is that those artifacts were supposed to shore up Christianity, as more of the same profitable relics and tourist industry that has gone on for centuries, while this find would in fact demonstrate that Christianity is not unique and is essentially a rehash of earlier religions and mythologies. In reality, this artifact completely goes against the perspective fervently upheld by the mainstream authorities and vested interests.

In this regard, then, the tablet is far less suspect than previous certain forgeries.

Mriana said...

Anonymous, don't doubt for a minute, even been saying the same thing myself, that if the Rapturists, Dominionist, and like Christian extremists groups go to war with the Muslim extremes, they will see their god decend from the sky... in the form of a nuke.

What I want to know is, if Xians did mushrooms at one time, why don't they do them now? Besides the venemous people in the Bible, what keeps people believing? Even those from non-violent/non-abusive Xian groups, may know their religion evolved from myth, but doing mushrooms is taboo today. It's not just the venomous Fundamgelicals' scare tactics and guilt trips that keeps people believing without drugs, for liberals believe too, for whatever reason. Few of them can see the truth of their religion or even beyond it and IF they do, they don't go to church for the most part.

Anonymous said...

Use some common sense. The Bible was written by man. How can you say it is all factual or meant for future generations to interpret properly. Every time a new piece of evidence is found to disprove the bible's signifigance the believers get up in arms. The church protects its secrets just like other organizations do and have done through out history. Religion is a form of control. It at one time helped keep people in order. Now with Science (true proven facts) religion is falling apart. I can"t wait for the day where Science proves we are not alone in the universe. Go ahead and laugh but you are completly nieve if you think out of billions of planets we are the only ones. Evolution is what got us where we are today. This tablet and the many that the church has hidden or destroyed could prove that some of what is in the bible are storys. Let the professionals due there work and study the tablet.....

Mriana said...

I hope it is said to be actual and all, because it would hopefully end a delusional battle. Granted it would probably get worse before it gets better though.

Anonymous said...

I have a challenge for any of you who do not believe there was a Jesus.Do a research on real true Satanists and the Black Mass. Tell me why they have to have a Host (Catholic communion)(Euchurist)in order to do a true Black Mass.

Mriana said...

Also, this Universe is NOT the first and only one. Creator can and does create new universes and assigns a spiritual hierarchy to oversee each one.

Anon, don't you see the superstitious mumbo jumbo in this? There is nothing scientific about it. The idea of a Creator god and a spiritual hierarchy is pure superstition, a belief in a myth. All the myth-making over such a things is created by humans, not some deity. Even the idea of solar mythology, albeit fascinating, is a myth created by humans.

Don't even ask, because I don't know what came before the big bang, but I know it was not some creator deity that humans created, thanks for the interesting myth you just stated though.

Mriana said...

Yahweh answered the question of "IS He?" with the answer "I AM". If anyone wants proof PERSONALLY, all one has to do is to ASK God to reveal Himself to them in a personal way; He will and you will know and the TRUTH will set you free. Scripture is being fulfilled. We are fast approaching "The Last Days", those being the last days for each of us as we die and those Born Again become spiritually in the presence of Yahshua (Jesus), our Lord. Ask. You have eternal life to gain.

ROFLMAO! Now THIS is superstitious. I don't think there is any god that will speak to anyone. IF he does, better check yourself into the nearest mental ward for Schizophrenia. If you are lucky, you will get some Haldol to stop those voices in your head.

Vencislav said...

"This should shake our basic view of Christianity," [Knohl] said as he sat in his office of the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem...


On opposite, I can see how this should strenghten the view of Christian phanatics... they would use this founding to say "how wonderfull it is that Jesus Christ was predicted, it must be revelation from Holy Ghost to some people living just before Jesus birth."

Mriana said...

I have a challenge for any of you who do not believe there was a Jesus.Do a research on real true Satanists and the Black Mass. Tell me why they have to have a Host (Catholic communion)(Euchurist)in order to do a true Black Mass.

I think you answered your own question. So many different myths are basically the same. What you just said proves nothing concerning the existance of Jesus for even Krishna, in the Gita, was the beginning, middle, and end (just as Jesus is) not to mention Krishna (Christ) is the incarnation of Vishnu (God). Jesus never existed. Krishna was also hustled off, just as Moses, Jesus, and even Horus, were to keep the ruler from killing them as babies. Once again, Jesus never really existed. He is a myth, just as Horus is.

Likewise, Satanists have similar stories and ceremonies. These ceremonies don't prove the existance of Jesus. In fact, they are more verification, at least in my mind, he never existed.

BTW, a Black Mass has no more power over anyone anymore than a Catholic or Episcopal Eucharist does. It's all just superstition, but I didn't mock my second ex-husband's brother's beliefs in Satanism and alike. I did tell him I thought is was more superstition though. He was cool with that. Of course, he was also a White Satanist, not a Black one. Oh yeah, it's a lot like Wiccan in some respects. A purely pagan religion and nothing more.

Anonymous said...

Regarding a comment posted here about mushrooms and the Tree of Life, manna, psychedelic effects--doesn't a man's penis also look like a mushroom?

Anonymous said...

you people trying to discredit the full person and advent, the death and resurrection of Jesus are pathetic. you tickle yourself by trying to lump true believers in Christ Jesus into some lower-than-you pseudo intellectuals. but there were over 350 Prophecies in the Old Testament alone that PRE-DATE this rock with writing on it. it's laughable how some gloat over this as some kind of smoking gun Christianity-killer. it's short-sighted stupidity to attack the overwhelming pre-telling of the Son of God's glorious advent, death and resurrection.
and yes, the idea of resurrection for people is centuries old, pre-dating Christianity in many forms. as there has always been eternity for every soul that ever lived, and some wrote about it. and for thinking this a 'mythical' foundation for Jesus Christ's timetable of death and resurrection do not consider that the foretelling and foreshadowing of the Lord's glorious triumph over death, hell and the grave pre-dated this stone, it was foretold in Scripture in various allegories how Christ Jesus would die and rise. If anything, the 'mythical' verbage is a copycat gossip column of sorts trying and failing to discredit what was foretold, accomplished, and sealed in eternity long before this writing.
To the impure, all things are impure. The spiritually dead see thru the lens of death, and are compelled to dismiss anything contrary to the bondage of death under which they are chained.

Acharya S said...

you people trying to discredit the full person and advent, the death and resurrection of Jesus are pathetic. you tickle yourself by trying to lump true believers in Christ Jesus into some lower-than-you pseudo intellectuals. but there were over 350 Prophecies in the Old Testament alone that PRE-DATE this rock with writing on it. it's laughable how some gloat over this as some kind of smoking gun Christianity-killer. it's short-sighted stupidity to attack the overwhelming pre-telling of the Son of God's glorious advent, death and resurrection.
and yes, the idea of resurrection for people is centuries old, pre-dating Christianity in many forms. as there has always been eternity for every soul that ever lived, and some wrote about it. and for thinking this a 'mythical' foundation for Jesus Christ's timetable of death and resurrection do not consider that the foretelling and foreshadowing of the Lord's glorious triumph over death, hell and the grave pre-dated this stone, it was foretold in Scripture in various allegories how Christ Jesus would die and rise. If anything, the 'mythical' verbage is a copycat gossip column of sorts trying and failing to discredit what was foretold, accomplished, and sealed in eternity long before this writing.
To the impure, all things are impure. The spiritually dead see thru the lens of death, and are compelled to dismiss anything contrary to the bondage of death under which they are chained.


That's nice. But despite all your insults and snide speech the fact will remain that Jesus Christ is a mythical figure predicated upon the many other myths and legends of the Roman Empire and beyond.

These "prophecies" in the Old Testament are in fact more of the same smoking gun material demonstrating that the creators of the New Testament simply took older writings, such as those in the OT and the Egyptian texts, and rewrote them to revolve around their fictional Jesus creation.

For more information on the use of these scriptures as a blueprint for the mythical Jesus, see my book Who Was Jesus? Fingerprints of The Christ.

What would be "laughable" were it not vicious to the point of murder is the attitude of fervent Christian believers towards those who are not so easily fooled by fictions.

Gonz said...

To add to the ananymous post at 5:36am- Thank you for mentioning John Allegro, Wasson, and many other concepts you touched on. However I would like to discourage such phrases like "Just a mushroom trip." These are sacred medicines you speak of, and to regard them in this way perpetuates this western propaganda of what they truly are throughout history. These entheogenic plants are at the root of religion(pun nice). The fact that they are the very thing we have demonized, even for religious purposes should be a huge red flag.
Furthermore, why this same born of a virgin, death, resurrection story? What did all the cultures unequivocally have in common? The stars, and the constellations. Astrotheology

Mriana said...

Regarding a comment posted here about mushrooms and the Tree of Life, manna, psychedelic effects--doesn't a man's penis also look like a mushroom?

I never thought about it, yes, unless they are circumcised I guess it does.

you people trying to discredit the full person and advent, the death and resurrection of Jesus are pathetic.

How so? Esp when the Christ myth is just a series of midrashes and rewritten mythology.

you tickle yourself by trying to lump true believers in Christ Jesus into some lower-than-you pseudo intellectuals. but there were over 350 Prophecies in the Old Testament alone that PRE-DATE this rock with writing on it.

It's midrash, not prophesy, which obviously you don't get due to brainwashing.

as there has always been eternity for every soul that ever lived, and some wrote about it. and for thinking this a 'mythical' foundation for Jesus Christ's timetable of death and resurrection do not consider that the foretelling and foreshadowing of the Lord's glorious triumph over death, hell and the grave pre-dated this stone, it was foretold in Scripture in various allegories how Christ Jesus would die and rise. If anything, the 'mythical' verbage is a copycat gossip column of sorts trying and failing to discredit what was foretold, accomplished, and sealed in eternity long before this writing.

You are uneducated and brainwashed. Like so many Fundies you have no real idea what you are talking about and I don't feel superior to you, but rather sad that you are deluded and can't see above it all. Then again, I guess there is some advantages to not feeling alienated from the rest of the group thereby keeping the delusion that the story is a true story and was prophecied. That is a sad way to live life too.

To the impure, all things are impure. The spiritually dead see thru the lens of death, and are compelled to dismiss anything contrary to the bondage of death under which they are chained.

Oh aren't we the judgemental one? What makes you so sure I am impure and spiritually dead? You don't know any of us to even know what you are talking about. One doesn't have to have religion to be spiritual. In fact, it can be as simple as communing with nature- not commune in a religious sense, but a purely human spiritual sense. So few religiously minded people know anything about the feelings of transcendence when relating to animals or nature or even another human being, such as a new born baby. They have no idea how truly spiritual these extreme emotions are or if they do, they attribute them to some human created deity, when in fact, these emotions are purely natural to the human, a neurochemical reaction, and when all encompassing as to feel one with the other person, animal, or nature can be f****** awesome. No god necessary.

Excuse me, Acharya. I know you don't hear me use that word much, if ever. lol It's true though.

For everyone, that is not discrediting anything. If you want to call those extreme emotions "God" be my guest, but it is not truly God or any god. They are just part of being human. IF you attribute such things to a deity, esp a dogmatic anthropomorphic one, don't impose it on the rest of us.

Anonymous said...

I would say where is this tablet currently (the article did not mentin that) Where can we see the tablet? Finally if the tablet is not yet deciphered why are they alreayd claiming it will change Christainity?

I question the validity of this article

GooD

Psylight said...

We have little to no information providing any kind of scientific dating for this tablet. We have the witness of several "experts", but blindly accepting what they say as truth simply because it agrees with one's own perspective is quite blind faith indeed.

What's more, like a previous poster has mentioned, the "resurrection in three days" theme was foreshadowed elsewhere in the Old Testament.

The truth is that Jesus is a big question mark. There are very intelligent individuals that sit on either side of the fence. Indeed, there are few on the planet who are unfamiliar with his name.

Neither Jews nor Muslims accept the status that Christians give to Jesus, and so their intrinsic bias is to try to disprove Jesus. Likewise with atheists, though I have found them to be much more amenable to intelligent, rational conversation. Given that, it seems apparent that before accepting matters such as this one as gospel truth (if you'll forgive the metaphor) is foolhardy until the biases of those proposing a particular interpretation of this tablet is well-established.

I know that as a Christian I am in the minority here. There is no nail in the coffin of Christianity. I came to faith by analyzing and comparing the teachings of Jesus against those of other prominent religious and spiritual leaders. Whether or not those documents were forged is kind of irrelevant. Their teaching is divine. That is simply my opinion, but I have no other to give.

You're free to believe what you will about the origins of Christianity, but I tell you this: there is deep, deep truth there. Ultimately, one must choose what path one takes through life. I choose Jesus, who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. None other makes that claim. None other teaches truth like Jesus.

I apologize for my brothers who have posted. Jesus taught that we are to love each other as we love ourselves. That means respecting their beliefs if we wish for them to respect ours. That respect is not predicated on them first respecting us. We must show it first, and sadly, we have not done so.

Anonymous said...

Ho hum, another Crusade. Who says the dark ages are over? Maybe the Sun really does revolve around the earth, which is of course still flat. It occurs to me that 'true believers' wouldn't be here arguing their point (which is?) unless they were deeply insecure about those beliefs and just needed someone to butt up against to do some re-inforcement of belief by way of projection. The truth is challenging and unpleasant to some people, and because of this, it can't be true because it would invalidate the whole belief system. I like fairytales with a happy ending. Am looking forward to a thousand years of peace when that bad ol' devil is bound in hell. I am worried what he'll be like after they let him out of jail though.... Will send a postcard from heaven after the rapture, if I can find Time.

Acharya S said...

...blindly accepting what they say as truth simply because it agrees with one's own perspective is quite blind faith indeed.

No one is "blindly accepting" this tablet for any purpose. In my original post, I point out that the article itself expresses caution, then I say IF the artifact is genuine. That being the case, your comments constitute a straw man.

The truth is that Jesus is a big question mark.

If Jesus is a "big question mark," why do you blindly believe in him?

Who are your "brothers?" Are non-Christians your "brothers?" No "sisters?"

When humanity is free of all anities and isms, it will finally be a real family.

Acharya S said...

According to the 'Talmud of Jmmanuel'( 'Jesus'autobiography), his parents named him Esu Jmmanuel.

The so-called "Talmud of Jmmanuel" is a modern forgery, apparently by Billy Meier, for his own agenda.

MetricSU said...

Acharya:

As one who has admired your work, I would forgive you for being a little smug about this latest development. Of course, your approach is always polite and professional -- unlike the anonymous, frothing-at-the-mouth apologists who have weighed in.

As for those of you who think the authenticity of the tablet provides MORE evidence for an historical figure, you clearly don't understand the arguments in favor of a mythical Jesus, or the counterarguments used by apologists. When faced with arguments like those Acharya has made in support of a mythical Christ, apologists often contend that the mystery religions actually borrowed from Christianity, not the other way around. (The apologists conveniently ignore the fact that church fathers such as Justin Martyr had to construct the infamous “diabolical mimicry” argument to fend off those who noted similarities between Christianity and earlier pagan religions.) Further, an argument that has explicitly been made by apologists is that, while there may be some similarities between Christ and the gods of the mystery religions, there are none whose details are so similar to the Christianity. In particular, none with a crucifixion followed by resurrection after a three-day period. (The candidates, the apologists claim, were all borrowed from Christianity.) Knol’s work demolishes that argument. Not only is there a precedent to a crucified human who rises after three days, it is a Jewish tradition – not a pagan one.

As I understand the translation, there is no way that the tablet can be viewed as a prophecy. It is discussing a recent event. Of course, apologists will try to twist it, anyway.

Keep up the good work, Acharya! This is an exciting time.

Anonymous said...

Acharya S,

I had not expected when I made my comment to actually see someone here who heavily influenced Zeitgeist part I. Of course you would not be surprised by it! :)

Have you read the Seth Material by Jane Roberts? The Christ entity is a being from a higher dimension who came to this dimension (on a number of occasions actually) at our collective request to teach us advanced spiritual concepts. For whatever reason in his last appearance he chose to insert himself into our little drama as a mythical figure of the time, the prophecized Son of God. Many of the tales in the Bible are based on this being, whose consciousness is so complex that he simultaneously had to occupy three bodies, "Jesus", John the Baptist, and Peter. Other tales associated with Jesus are based on events with other people of the time. This being is due to return in all probabilities around the year 2075, at which time it is likely our perception of time and reality will be quite different. Time does not actually pass, the perception of time passing is meant to limit the information we process, because we could not deal with all of it in our current form.

Anonymous said...

Pssst... it's in the old testament also. Not really a huge discovery.

Acharya S said...

Anonymous said...

Pssst... it's in the old testament also. Not really a huge discovery.


Where in the Old Testament does it discuss the resurrection of the Messiah specifically after three days?

If you're talking about the story of Jonah at Jon 1:17, yes, that IS old news - and it's yet another part of the BLUEPRINT used by the creators of Christianity, as is evident by the mention of it at Matthew 12:40. (And as I discuss in my book Who Was Jesus?)

However, Jonah is not the Messiah, so, if genuine, this tablet would still provide unique and useful information - and it would indeed constitute a HUGE DISCOVERY for the reasons already outlined here.

Anonymous said...

Jesus is the last Prophet for Jews. His mission is to bring back the Jews to the true teaching of Moses and ready to follow the last Prophet that will come from thee brethen.

Anonymous said...

Another thing to consider as well, is that just because something is ancient, doesn't necessarily mean that it is factual or should be taken seriously. If for example in a thousands of years from now.. someone discovered a 'national enquire' magazine and mistook it as news during the time - would that be accurate?
This piece of evidence, imo, is being over sensationalized. If anything, there is a lot more damning evidence that already has been previously been presented in other works than this tablet. And even those pieces of evidence can be under said to be in dispute.
Religion serves a spiritual and social purpose in societies. Often the replacement to it is just as bad as the religion itself from what I've seen. The only hope that humanity has is to embrace true spirituality (spirituality without religion - which means of course analysis and meditation for universal and spiritual truths by looking inward - and not accepting things on faith, but by discovering things by logic and reasoning).

Vencislav said...

Anonymous said...

Jesus is the last Prophet for Jews. His mission is to bring back the Jews to the true teaching of Moses and ready to follow the last Prophet that will come from thee brethen.


Prove it, if you can.

It easy just to unload ton of garbage in someones backyard and then just to leave the scene, so is easy for religious fanatics to say whatever they beleive in...

Jesus is just a myth as dozens of ancient "gods" like Zeus, Mitra, Krishna etc.

Acharya S said...

Anonymous said...

Another thing to consider as well, is that just because something is ancient, doesn't necessarily mean that it is factual or should be taken seriously.


These remarks miss the entire point of my post. No one is saying that this tablet might record a factual resurrection from the dead after three days. On the contrary, I am contending that if the tablet is genuinely from the pre-Christian era and records the mythical motif of the three-day period after death and before resurrection, as is found in the myths of other cultures, it would provide evidence that the Jews of the time were aware of these myths and that they may have incorporated them into a mythical figure called "Jesus Christ."

Obviously, since we are talking ancient mythology, we are not suggested that just because something is old it is true. And the same can be said of the Bible.

Mriana said...

The only hope that humanity has is to embrace true spirituality (spirituality without religion - which means of course analysis and meditation for universal and spiritual truths by looking inward - and not accepting things on faith, but by discovering things by logic and reasoning).

Wait a minute! Who says YOUR spirituality is TRUE spirituality? I agree with the logic and reason part, but for me, meditation does not cut it, but rather (to borrow a phrase from the religious) communion with nature, animals, and humans. I don't need any drug to feel extremes of emotions, such as transcendence. All it can take is a sympathy from one of my pets, looking into the eyes of a wild animal while quietly walking through the woods, or even, for example, the birth of my first son. For me it's "spiritual" moments within this life that is what I feel is important (for me at least), which does involve looking inward, because you have to experience the feelings in order to feel extreme emotions, as well as be involved in the moment. Meditation though, no, but being interconnected with my own planet and everything there on it, is what I'm talking about and you don't need any human-made deity for that.

Mriana said...

When humanity is free of all anities and isms, it will finally be a real family.

Um... I rather like and appreciate the philosophy of Humanism. :( However, that is my bias.

Psylight said...

Who are your "brothers?" Are non-Christians your "brothers?" No "sisters?"

You are misconstruing a term of familiarity I use with these people. They are my brothers. I use a masculine term out of habit; few women make the kinds of posts they do. Yeah, I assumed they were male. Is that so unusual on the internet?

I differentiate those who make the claim of salvation through Christ from those who do not. My logic is simple: I anticipate spending eternity with one category and not the other. I am commanded and beholden to love both categories as I love myself. Indeed, I could come to the same understanding without a direct command.

Regarding straw men, perhaps you are misunderstanding exactly what the term means. I will cite Wikipedia for convenience: "A straw man argument is an informal fallacy based on misrepresentation of an opponent's position."

I apologize that you feel misrepresented. That was not my intent, as I believe a careful analysis of what I wrote would show. I was simply urging caution while interpreting this find, a rational position that you yourself agree with. I am also watching this find carefully.

If Jesus is a "big question mark," why do you blindly believe in him?

Did I not cover this? In the Gospels, we have four records of his life (or fewer, if you buy into the Q document analysis, which is also far from universally accepted) from different individuals. Each left a distinctive mark on the content of the book they wrote. Each was profoundly influenced by the man Jesus. There are several other false gospels (yes, I've read them), none of which agree with the canonical four.

In fact, there are very few historical records of Jesus except by those who he influenced greatly. Contrary to those who believe the whole thing was dreamed up at the Council of Nicaea, there are physical copies of early gospels dating from around 200AD. In a society where many concepts were passed down and communicated verbally, I do not find it surprising that we have so few defined written works. That's why I say Jesus was a question mark: determining anything about his life to the degree that would be acceptable to the zealous skeptics is not possible with the data we have.

All I have to go on is the truth of the text of the Gospels, and the wonders therein. It is the truth within the text of the Gospels and their harmony with previously-written Scripture that leads me to believe that Christ was indeed the Messiah. Even if I die and simply cease to exist, I will die contentedly. Jesus' teachings have yet to steer me wrong.

When humanity is free of all anities and isms, it will finally be a real family.

I find this comment remarkably shortsighted. There are literally hundreds of opposing philosophical positions that are -isms. Surely you aren't suggesting that until we drop philosophy and the critique of reason (which results in categorization of viewpoints) that we will be a real family? Families have differences of opinion but are tied together with love and respect.

Acharya S said...

You are misconstruing a term of familiarity I use with these people.

No, I'm not misconstruing anything if by your own admission you consider only those with whom you will share eternity to be your "brothers," while the rest are not. (Although it's very nice of you to "love" the non-believers, I would wager that's not entirely true.)

No, I'm not misunderstanding what "straw man" means. You set up a straw man argument to assume that we were blindly believing in the artifact because it appears to support our position.

Re your comments about the gospels, these texts do not clearly show up in the historical record until the end of the second century, and they are full of contradictions and blatant errors, so holding them up as divine authority and basing one's life upon them would appear to be the height of folly. (See my book Who Was Jesus? for more on this subject.) There is no indication that the real authors of those gospels had ever met any "man Jesus" at any point, so they could not have been influenced by him as a "real person."

Not only are there "very few historical records of Jesus" there are in fact NONE from the appropriate time. Not one. And the purported "references" in Josephus, Pliny, Suetonius and Tacitus, et al., do not constitute valid scientific evidence.

When analyzed scientifically and not from a position of blind belief, the gospels do not provide any scientific evidence for the existence of Jesus Christ as a historical figure.

No one here is saying that the "whole thing was dreamed up at the Council of Nicea," so that's yet another straw man. We are well aware that there are parts of the New Testament that date earlier than the fourth century, but to say that there are "physical copies" of the gospels from around 200 AD/CE is inaccurate as well. (I assume you are talking about the incomplete Chester Beatty Papyri.) There are thus fragments from the third century, but the oldest complete MSS are the Codices Vaticanus and Sinaiticus, which date from around the first quarter to middle of the fourth century, AFTER the Council of Nicea.

Jesus' teachings have yet to steer me wrong.

So, have you plucked out your eyes and cut off your hands because they offended you? Do you hate your mother and father? Do you find his position of coming not to bring peace but a sword to be appealing? Do you think it's a good idea for him to predict - and let - you be put to death for his sake? Should he send his angels to burn nonbelievers? Are Jews vipers and sons of Satan? Should slaves be obedient to their masters? Should women be silent in church? (Again, see my book Who Was Jesus? for more on this subject.)

"When humanity is free of all anities and isms, it will finally be a real family."

I find this comment remarkably shortsighted.


Then you are misconstruing its intent. The point would be that there is no need to be slinging labels around or confining oneself to any one ideology that differentiates and separates you from the rest of humanity. Simply by being a fervent believer in Christianity, you are not better than a fervent believer in Buddhism. And vice versa. I am addressing the conceit, arrogance and smugness that follow from a fervent conviction to an ism and anity - there is nothing "remarkably shortsighted" about that at all. What is "remarkably shortsighted" are the conceit, arrogance and smugness of religious fanatics.

Cheers.

wayman29 said...

I do not find this to be all that revolutionary or over the top. We find the motif in the Johna text in the OT. Also plenty of illusions to themes of resurrection motifs. The finds just farther verifies the use of such themes, and pesher by New Testment writers, on who they thought their teacher was. The only Scholarship this may go against are those who have been heavily influenced by evangelical views of the literature. The Three day motif has been a known theme for those who have read the literature. Keep you hat on.

wayman29 said...

Just had to rush back and show that besides your favorite books you listed this idea was long in the workings. It is not only the Christian mystic who viewed this as a story motif. Other secular scholars who have an appreciation for metaphor, mythology, and motifs and religious literature understand the cultural diffusion that occurs between cultures thought the same. People like Joseph Campbell, James Frazer and others already were discussing such Ideas in responsible ways. rather then the shallow common view of "Everything was copied and stolen" A simple easy Wiki search on the Three day motif will give loads of starter information.

Acharya S said...

wayman29 said...

Having studied and written about this subject for many years, I am well aware of the history of the mythicists school, as well as the works of Campbell, Frazer and many others dating back centuries.

It is bad form to make repeated dismissals of work - i.e., mine - you clearly do not know and to make insults of my intelligence based upon such ignorance.

Your remarks regarding this tablet also indicate you don't really know the subject as well as you think you, since this would be a unique find, if genuine. Doing a simple internet search will hardly turn up credible primary source material, such as this tablet would provide.

Instead of making denigrating comments here, perhaps you should take your battle to the Christian front.

Nor do I feel the need to pass through your shallow derogatory comments about Zeitgeist, as you clearly do not understand the implications and value of putting this information into the hands of tens of millions of people.

Anonymous said...

As a muslim I have tried to look into things and find the common ground and unite the beliefs through all the holy texts, theorys, archealogy and other concepts. When looking at old fragments of records like this, one must first ask themselves the basic questions
1. Is it a genuine recorded fact on the piece.
2. Is it someones belief.
3. Is the interperatation correct.
4. Is the person who wrote it been missinformed.
5. Is the author respected, genuine & honest
Just because it is old and all the tests prove so does not been the information recorded is correct. If you found pictures on a stone wall of strange looking monsters 2000 years ago does not mean they existed then, it could just be that persons belief from passed down from ten thousand years ago. May god guide us to the right path.

Psylight said...

(Although it's very nice of you to "love" the non-believers, I would wager that's not entirely true.)

What sensible person places a wager on a situation they know nothing of? All you know of me are the words I've written here and what Google will give you. I admit, I am being somewhat antagonistic here, but this is the nature of the blog format.

You set up a straw man argument to assume that we were blindly believing in the artifact because it appears to support our position.

Mind pointing this out, exactly? I see nowhere in my original post where such a supposition could be supported, but perhaps I am merely seeing what I meant to write and not what I actually wrote.

these texts do not clearly show up in the historical record until the end of the second century

You are wrong. Have you not heard of the Rylands Library Papyrus P52? Historians are uncertain precisely when it was dated, but most accept a dating of around 150 CE. However, it is possible that it was produced during the first century! This nonsense claiming that none of the gospels were recorded until after the second century is patently absurd, and at odds with the archeological evidence.

Not only are there "very few historical records of Jesus" there are in fact NONE from the appropriate time. Not one. And the purported "references" in Josephus, Pliny, Suetonius and Tacitus, et al., do not constitute valid scientific evidence.

It depends here on what constitutes valid scientific evidence. In dealing with matters of antiquity, we lack the knowledge to make many valid claims, simply because much of the evidence has been lost. However, do we cease to make any claims about the past simply because they are based entirely on a single, uncorroborated archeological find? Or do we extract all the meaning we can from that find and derive hypotheses accordingly? The archeological community does and has always done the latter. We have many, semi-dependent, scientifically-questionable claims that Jesus existed. The hypothesis you derive from that is a matter of opinion.

So, have you plucked out your eyes and cut off your hands because they offended you? Do you hate your mother and father? Do you find his position of coming not to bring peace but a sword to be appealing?

These teachings have to be properly contextualized. It is not difficult to take a statement out-of-context and twist it to mean something that it should not. Your own claim about -isms is one such statement. I was not the only one that caught you on that. The Bible is no different. By taking the teachings of Jesus out of the context of the time he lived in, the understanding of Judaism that his disciples had, and the knowledge of the living God, you are perpetuating this very cycle.

I am addressing the conceit, arrogance and smugness that follow from a fervent conviction to an ism and anity - there is nothing "remarkably shortsighted" about that at all. What is "remarkably shortsighted" are the conceit, arrogance and smugness of religious fanatics.

Fervent conviction to an ideal does not automatically confer to its adherent these qualities you claim. Indeed, these qualities are, by any Biblical standard, antithetical to Christian teaching. Jesus Christ teaches that we are to serve each other. Conceit, arrogance, and smugness all boil down to the same root: egotism. Philippians 3:2 directly counters such a view, stating: "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves."

So then I ask myself, why am I writing here? I guess the only answer is that I'm bored at work. :)

Brendan Bombaci said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Brendan Bombaci said...

Holy Smokes.

It's not like the people who are saying this thing is 'real' or not are trying to say that "something is real based on its timelines;" and, it's not even a big deal to say that this existed before Christ, because, according to how it's written and some fairly certain carbon dating (which, I am TERRIBLY sorry, folks, works far back enough in the timeline, accurately, to cover these dates just 'yesteryear' as it were)... THESE DID EXIST BEFORE CHRIST.

Can you just look at Giza for once, and the ancient belief systems therein, before just going off of whatever the HELL you've all been indoctrinated by?

Seriously. Doctrine is the destroyer of truth. Truth has no boundaries, and CANNOT, by any means be defined by a BELIEF SYSTEM. Akhenaten was trying to tell people that - he constructed an egalitarian society based on gnostic and hierarchy-free ideals, and the Amun Priesthood (the Vatican before they were Roman) went ahead and killed him and his lovely wife Nefertiti for... oh what's it called... HERESY (?). That's what religions are good for.

War.

The resurrection deal, and solar/lunar/seasonal/precessional worship have been going on far enough, under so many cultural names, to be called, by any objective thinker, ANCIENT SCIENCE.

Hence, the field of study called 'archaeo-astronomy,' and all of the "religions" it encounters and puzzle-pieces together as one big global mosaic of understanding.

forgiveness and peace and cosmic awareness have been around FAR LONGER than "Christianity," or any other religions.

What must be remembered is that the complex data of our natural and cosmic discoveries throughout many long Ages must be encoded in stories that we can all recall... so anyone can retell them and figure out their meaning instantly.
IF they are initiated into a level of awareness that grants them the forgiveness that their forefathers were not liers for telling untrue stories... but rather humanitarians for making it all beautiful and interesting so we may embrace it rather than trash it over the commonplace entertainment value lifestyle of waste and greed.

May we all accept that the universe is the life and love we seek, and that it is within us as much as it is without us.

Light and Truth,
Brendan Bombaci
http://kairologic.blogspot.com/2008/07/new-dead-sea-scroll-found.html

Acharya S said...

Psylight said...

"...these texts do not clearly show up in the historical record until the end of the second century..."

You are wrong. Have you not heard of the Rylands Library Papyrus P52? Historians are uncertain precisely when it was dated, but most accept a dating of around 150 CE. However, it is possible that it was produced during the first century! This nonsense claiming that none of the gospels were recorded until after the second century is patently absurd, and at odds with the archeological evidence.


No, I am not wrong. P52 is NOT conclusively dated to 150 AD/CE, and it does not demonstrate the existence of the canonical gospel of John at that time. In the first place, P52 is a tiny fragment that only demonstrates a couple of lines, several dozen letters scattered across four verses of John's gospel - hardly evidence of an entire gospel. It could be from one of the texts used by the creators of the canonical gospels as in Luke's prologue. Concerning its age, following is a quote from my book Who Was Jesus?:

The Rylands Papyrus

The presumed dating of P52 to the first half of the second century has been called "sensational" and seems untenable. One significant argument against the early dating of P52 is that the fragment was part of a codex, or book, rather than a scroll, and there are few examples of such books in existence at such an early date. Moreover, in a fairly recent paleographical study published in the Archiv fur Papyrusforschung 35 (1989), German scholar Andreas Schmidt suggested a date for P52 of 170 AD/CE +/- 25 years. The fact is that paleography is a difficult and imprecise science, especially for as tiny a fragment as P52, which means that caution is warranted in making definitive declarations, particularly in regard to the earlier dates. As New Testament professor and Christian manuscript expert Dr Larry Hurtado states:

"...because paleographical dating can rarely be more precise than +/- 25 to 50 years, the proposed dating of many manuscripts will lie across two centuries (e.g., second/third century CE)." (Hurtado, The Earliest Christian Artifacts: Manuscripts and Christian Origins, Wm. B. Eermans, 2006, p. 45.)

Combined with these factors, since the gospel of John does not appear in the literary record until the end of the second century, logic would suggest the later date of P52 to be more accurate. (Murdock, WWJ, 69)

I repeat that there is NO EVIDENCE of the existence of the canonical gospels as we have them until the end of the second century. I have demonstrated this fact repeatedly over the past decade, and no one has come up with any scientific evidence. Your belief otherwise is just that, a belief. It is not based in fact but in the need to make these texts by the authors purported of them. The evidence demonstrates otherwise. These texts were not written by disciples or even non-eyewitnesses anywhere close to the time purported.

As we can see, in consideration of the fact that you believe without any scientific evidence that a Jewish man was the god of the cosmos, raised people from the dead, himself resurrected from the dead - with dead "saints" coming out of their graves en masse and wandering around Jerusalem! - and flew into heaven, it is not I who am engaging in anything "patently absurd."

Psylight said...

"Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence." -- Carl Sagan. I imagine you place some value on his works, as someone who values scientific thought.

I have not read thoroughly the writers you are citing. I tend to work from more academic sources.

The Harvard Theological Review, in 2005, published an article on P52 titled "The Use and Abuse of P52", stating in the abstract:

At that time Justin Martyr espoused a logos Christology, without citing the Fourth Gospel explicitly. Such an omission by Justin would seem strange if the Gospel of John had already been written and was in circulation. Then the discovery and publication in the 1930s of two papyrus fragments made such a late dating difficult, if not impossible, to sustain. The first and most important is the fragment of John chapter 18 … [P52], dated by paleographers to the second quarter of the second century (125–150); the other is a fragment of a hitherto unknown gospel called Egerton Papyrus 2 from the same period, which obviously reflects knowledge of the Gospel of John…. For the Gospel of John to have been written and circulated in Egypt, where these fragments were found, a date no later than the first decade of the second century must be presumed.

Now, you're welcome to continue to claim that there's no evidence for the existence of the gospels before this point. However, like Dr. Sagan says, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. You can say that there is no evidence as loudly as you like, but that's just not how archeology works. Archeology works from what little data we have about the past.

Unfortunately, we do not have much. Much of what existed once has been lost, and this fact must also be considered in our evaluations of the data, keeping a perspective like Dr. Sagan's.

The debate about P52's dating is especially relevant to this particular discussion, as the dating of this ancient tablet is also paleographical, and any dates given for it are subject to similar uncertainties as that of P52.

Admittedly, Greek and Hebrew are two vastly different scripts, and so the paleographic analyses will be different. The tablet also contains more text than the very small P52 fragment.

The citation from that abstract also raises another valid point: Christianity as preached by Christ (and as recorded in the gospels, so take that for what you will) was primarily communicated verbally. The literacy rate in Judea at the time was quite low.
Expecting that a religion recorded to be spread primarily verbally immediately commit that record to text also seems erroneous.

I thank you for your patience and for your detailed responses. I give you the last word.

Acharya S said...

Thank you for your rational response and for giving me the last word.

Of course, in this case I would disagree that absent of evidence is not evidence of absence, because there WERE very fervent Christians before the canonical gospels as we have them appear in literary record, and, as Christians do today, they surely would have cited the gospels if such existed and were deemed "holy writ." These fervent Christian believers included Paul, who never once indicates he knows anything about the gospels. In fact, he reveals little if anything genuine about any life of a "historical" Jesus.

What Christian today would attempt to argue the truth of Christianity to any extent without using the scriptures?

Why do all of a sudden at the end of the second century these texts start showing up in the literary record? And there are reasons to suspect that that is when they were really created, but I have outlaid them in my books, especially Who Was Jesus?

Cheers.

wayman29 said...

Three day motif from the Ancient Near East.. So are we still all excited about this huge discovery the Christianity "ripped off"?? LOL

1. kug-dereš-ki-gal-la-ke4 gišgu-za-na i-ni-in-tuš
2. da-nun-na di-kud-imin-bi igi-ni-šè di mu-un-ši-in-kud
3. i-bí mu-ši-in-bar i-bí-úš-a-kam
4. inim-ma-ne-ne inim-LIPIŠ-gig-ga-àm
5. [munus]-tu-ra uzu-níg-sìg-šè ba-an-tu
6. uzu-níg-sìg-ga giškak-ta hi ba-da-an-lá
7. u4-3 gi6-3 um-ta-zal-la-ta
The pure Ereshkigal seated herself upon her throne, p. 119
The Anunnaki, the seven judges, pronounced judgment before her,
They fastened their eyes upon her, the eyes of death.
At their word, the word which tortures the spirit,
The sick ["woman"] was turned into a corpse,
The corpse was hung from a stake.
After three days and three nights had passed,
The poem then continues with the efforts of Inanna's messenger, Ninshubur, to have the gods bring her back to life. Enki intervenes and Inanna is resurrected. The last three lines of this resurrection passage read:
1. 60 ú-nam-ti-la 60 a-nam-ti-la ugu-na bí-in-šub-bu-uš
2. dinanna ba-gub
3. dinanna kur-ta ba-e11-dè
Sixty times, the food of life, sixty times, the water of life, they sprinkled upon it (Inanna's dead body),
Inanna arose.
Inanna ascends from the nether world.
http://www.sacred-texts.com/ane/sum/sum10.htm

Acharya S said...

wayman29 said...

Three day motif from the Ancient Near East.. So are we still all excited about this huge discovery the Christianity "ripped off"?? LOL


Every bit of evidence helps. This one just happens to be within decades of the alleged advent of Christ, in the proper culture, making it a far more plausible precedent than something from millennia prior and lands farther away.

In any event, every bit is useful, so thanks for the important info.

No need to be snide. LOL.

wayman29 said...

Yes sorry about being snide..It's all done with a sence of humor... What sends me over the edge is all the hype over the Zeitgeist ideas to me it's another form of Apocalypticism. I sure hope we don't have a "Great Disappointment" like the Millerites had, except in secular society. I think if all the Zeitgeist fans were evangelicals the "Left Behind series" would once more be on the best sellers list. Take care and be well. Sorry about the scholarly tiff. It's ok to feed the public, just don't buy the bread from just one bakery.