Jump to content

Recommended Posts

7 hours ago, TABA said:

there is too much bad stuff in the Bible, both OT and NT, and that it won’t be possible to keep the little that is good while keeping the bad from raising its ugly head as long as any version of Christianity is retained.

·       The Bible itself suggests that separating good from bad can be approached on the model of separating wheat and tares.  The issue here is that interpretation of the Bible has been corrupted by Christendom, by what the poet WB Yeats called ‘twenty centuries of stony sleep’ with the untrue theology of orthodox faith.  Yeats’ idea that the world could wake from this bad dream involves a recognition of the original authentic origins, separating the wheat and tares at harvest time

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 183
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

Hard core Christians reject both religious historical scholars & their finding. They believe religious scholars are possessed by the Devil, the father of lies. They also believe the Devil manipula

My study & research has convinced me that Jesus was more than likely a literary figure in a fictional story, but mainstream scholarship doesn't agree. Scholars that hold this view of Jesus being a

We've seen christians flatly deny the astrotheology of the bible, tooth and nail. And then, after several years of hot debate, I began seeing christians trying to silently accept astrotheology but in

7 hours ago, TABA said:

I’d much rather promote a version of Buddhism.  

·       While I am sympathetic to that view, it is important to regard Christianity as originally developed as Buddhism for the west, and to analyse how this enlightened vision was overtaken, corrupted and suppressed by the depravity of western culture.  The apocalyptic problems of depravity facing the world can’t be fixed by the methods of spiritual detachment promoted by Buddhism, but require the direct confrontation between good and evil proposed in Christianity.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Moderator

Excuse my interjection, but isn't Christianity without Jesus like water without the hydrogen component? Isn't the Jesus character kinda fundamental to Christianity? The whole basis of Christianity is that Jesus was Gods son who died to take away the sins of the world and save us all. Take Jesus away and you haven't got Christianity. You've got... I dunno another philosophy? Like if you take hydrogen away from water you just have oxygen left, but you can't then call that "water".

 

St Paul and apologists alike state that without Jesus dying and rising Christianity falls apart. I agree which is why I'm no longer a Christian because I don't believe he died and rose again. I'm not even sure an historical Jesus existed - 50/50 on that one, but it's an irrelevant question at this point for me.

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, LogicalFallacy said:

Excuse my interjection, but isn't Christianity without Jesus like water without the hydrogen component?

·       Thanks so much LF for this essential question.  My view is that Christianity, ie the Gospels and Epistles, started off with the understanding within their community that these works were pure fiction, that Jesus Christ was totally invented.  However, the literal fable proved so wildly popular that the origin was rapidly suppressed and forgotten amidst the fervour of faith.  So Christianity without Jesus means accepting that the Gospels are fiction, and seeing that this approach provides a coherent integrated wisdom that is missing in the conventional literal belief.  Such a return to the authentic origin of faith is not at all like your water without hydrogen metaphor, rather it is like the shift of cosmology from geocentrism to the heliocentric model, or from creationism to evolution.  In fact, I see this paradigm shift to a vision of Jesus as pure myth as the third major shift required in Christian thinking after those inspired by Copernicus and Darwin. Literal historicism is entirely unhistorical and unscientific, so as Josh has commented is withering on the vine.

3 hours ago, LogicalFallacy said:

Isn't the Jesus character kinda fundamental to Christianity? The whole basis of Christianity is that Jesus was Gods son who died to take away the sins of the world and save us all. Take Jesus away and you haven't got Christianity. You've got... I dunno another philosophy? Like if you take hydrogen away from water you just have oxygen left, but you can't then call that "water".

·       My point is that this conventional faith of Christendom from the Nicene Creed was a corrupted political distortion of the original high wisdom that wrote the Gospels.  The Christendom theology of ‘washed in the blood of the lamb’ arose to serve the imperial security needs for a single faith in the late Roman Empire. Far from ‘the whole basis of Christianity’, the ransom theology of salvation as going to heaven is an exercise in simplistic supernatural myth which arose to meet the political need to neuter the messianic vision of social transformation in the gospels.

 

3 hours ago, LogicalFallacy said:

St Paul and apologists alike state that without Jesus dying and rising Christianity falls apart. I agree which is why I'm no longer a Christian because I don't believe he died and rose again.

Yes, and that conventional literal Christianity needs to fall apart, because it is untrue.  As David Hume explained in Of Miracles, the story of Jesus dying and rising is either a lie, a misunderstanding or a unique violation of the laws of nature. My view is that it is a misunderstanding of how Jesus was originally invented to provide a humanised story of the observed cycles of the sun through the day and year.  That metaphor provides a powerful account of how our mundane life is connected to the stable eternal grandeur of the cosmos, providing a far more coherent relation to reality than the traditional fantasy. 

 

3 hours ago, LogicalFallacy said:

I'm not even sure an historical Jesus existed - 50/50 on that one, but it's an irrelevant question at this point for me.

·       Far from irrelevant, the non-existence of the historical Jesus is the key to understanding the original creative genius behind Christianity.  The vast historical scale of literal belief demonstrates the perverse psychology that dominates human cognition, so explaining how and why this story arose has major moral value.  Keeping the fictional Jesus story as a message of natural redemption overturns the corruption of the tradition and offers potential of a path to a state of grace, meaning a human understanding of how we actually connect to the natural cosmos, and what it actually means to say we are fallen into corrupted depravity.  Belief in the historical Jesus is central to the fall from grace, while a systematic theology that removes this conventional belief offers potential to reconcile religious faith and scientific reason.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Admin

I think Christianity without Jesus is as valid as Stoicism without Zeus. The way I see it, all religions, governments, philosophies and psychological models are clearly manmade systems aimed at finding the best way to live. Therefore, all these systems are in a contstant state of growth and revision, just like everything else designed by human beings. 

 

In other words, there are no supernatural (magical) entities pullling the strings. My preferred philosophy provides me with a generous measure of tranquility. For me, my preferred philosophy is therefore useful. Not "truth," as we said as Christians, but useful for life. 

 

If, however, a system, philosophical or otherwise, is little more than interesting to think about, offering few if any practical "how to live" ideas, I likely wouldn't spend much time on it. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, webmdave said:

I think Christianity without Jesus is as valid as Stoicism without Zeus. The way I see it, all religions, governments, philosophies and psychological models are clearly manmade systems aimed at finding the best way to live. Therefore, all these systems are in a contstant state of growth and revision, just like everything else designed by human beings. 

 

In other words, there are no supernatural (magical) entities pullling the strings. My preferred philosophy provides me with a generous measure of tranquility. For me, my preferred philosophy is therefore useful. Not "truth," as we said as Christians, but useful for life. 

 

If, however, a system, philosophical or otherwise, is little more than interesting to think about, offering few if any practical "how to live" ideas, I likely wouldn't spend much time on it. 

 

👍👍👍👍

Link to post
Share on other sites

Forgive me if I am being redundant, but I like to boil things down to their simplest common denominator.   Isn't it possible that Jesus existed, believed he was the son of god because he was conditioned to believe that, felt compelled to do what he could to better mankind, was a bright, charismatic young man who studied religion and philosophy, possibly under the Essenes, and preached the wisdom of those who proceeded him, which in simple form is the golden rule?  Concern for "WE", as opposed to "ME".  

 

Why couldn't a movement be started based simply on the wisdom of the ages, very well summed up by "Jesus" statement to love neighbor as self.   The only thing missing would be his divinity and all the "magic".  To me that would be evidence based salvation.

 

I think bringing in all the cosmology, etc, etc, just "muddies the water".  At least it boggles my mind.  If your going to market a movement, it needs to be clear and simple to understand.

 

And I would add that to get a movement started in the USA, you need some "famous" hero (or group) to help get it off the ground.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

And how do you get around the fact that many people aren't drawn to logical, evidence based solutions that involve them in thinking and doing something monotonous to bring "salvation" to the world.  They want the magic of god, or the Donald Trumps of the world, or pompous priests in fancy garb to save them through simply believing, and going through elaborate rituals.  Even rioting and killing for their "saviors".  The golden rule is too boring for them.  They want sensational experiences and immediate gratification.  

 

Yes, I think logical thinking is our salvation, but what is the solution for getting around the emotional, magical thinking?  I am serious about this.  Anyone have any suggestions?

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Moderator
2 hours ago, Weezer said:

Yes, I think logical thinking is our salvation, but what is the solution for getting around the emotional, magical thinking?  I am serious about this.  Anyone have any suggestions?

 

There probably isn't one unfortunately. One of my dystopian futures is one in which religious and other nonsense has taken over and atheists and logical thinkers are once again killed for critical thinking. Hopefully that doesn't happen, but after watching the rise of Trump courting the evangelical right, Putin the Orthodox and knowing that most the world is still religious and/or believes in some woo stuff (Healing crystals are on the rise) it's not an impossible scenario, or even extremely unlikely. In fact if we go off world history... well most of you are fairly well read up on that.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Moderator
20 hours ago, Weezer said:

Why couldn't a movement be started based simply on the wisdom of the ages, very well summed up by "Jesus" statement to love neighbor as self.   The only thing missing would be his divinity and all the "magic".  To me that would be evidence based salvation.

 

I think bringing in all the cosmology, etc, etc, just "muddies the water".  At least it boggles my mind.  If your going to market a movement, it needs to be clear and simple to understand.

 

This is what Robert is trying to say through the thread. What you're saying above is what he is alleging happened to early christianity: 

 

'A more sophisticated and complex philosophical framework based in allegory, was then taken and dumbed down to a large extent for mass consumption. Through a simplified explanation that wouldn't boggle the mind so much.'

 

From the cosmological view, the reason jesus is saying anything in the gospels, ties in to the larger concept of the passage of time and the changing of older ways to the newer ways coming ahead. Loving your neighbor as yourself ties in to the Vedic idea of the ascending Yugas. The high point being total and complete knowledge of god - meaning understanding god as whole and unified from the pantheistic framework of the Yuga's. 

 

You ARE your neighbor... 

 

You ARE the least of these...

 

You and the father ARE one...

 

This is an example of some of the spiritual aspects behind the cosmological allegories that are utilized and referenced with precession allegory. They over arch the entire issues of sayings, miracles, life philosophies and the rest. 

 

I guess the point being that it all works together. Where they seemed to have gone wrong is separating out the over arching aspect for the sake of mass teaching. Bringing us to christianity today. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Moderator
4 hours ago, LogicalFallacy said:

 

There probably isn't one unfortunately. One of my dystopian futures is one in which religious and other nonsense has taken over and atheists and logical thinkers are once again killed for critical thinking. Hopefully that doesn't happen, but after watching the rise of Trump courting the evangelical right, Putin the Orthodox and knowing that most the world is still religious and/or believes in some woo stuff (Healing crystals are on the rise) it's not an impossible scenario, or even extremely unlikely. In fact if we go off world history... well most of you are fairly well read up on that.

 

I didn't look into crystals, but religion has not been on the rise for a long time. It's been the opposite. But maybe that's why crystals are on the rise - non-religious people wanting to fool around with something else? 

 

I think that another likely scenario could be that the divide between the religious and non-religious closes in and turns into more of an, "to each his own," attitude over time. The magick folks seem to have that attitude. They do what they do, they don't care so much whether or not other people are doing it too. 

 

Robert's christianity seems similar. So does the dutch example. Religion looks to lose it's threat through time, not gain it. Liberal beliefs water it down, they don't bolster it up like conservative beliefs. So there's good reason not to worry about such a thing unless entire nationwide religious trends begin to stop dissolving and began increasing. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/18/2021 at 3:01 AM, LogicalFallacy said:

Excuse my interjection, but isn't Christianity without Jesus like water without the hydrogen component? Isn't the Jesus character kinda fundamental to Christianity? The whole basis of Christianity is that Jesus was Gods son who died to take away the sins of the world and save us all. Take Jesus away and you haven't got Christianity. 


American Standard Version
Wherefore we henceforth know no man after the flesh: even though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now we know him so no more.

International Standard Version
So then, from now on we do not think of anyone from a human point of view. Even if we did think of the Messiah from a human point of view, we don't think of him that way anymore.

NET Bible
So then from now on we acknowledge no one from an outward human point of view. Even though we have known Christ from such a human point of view, now we do not know him in that way any longer.

New Heart English Bible
Therefore we know no one after the flesh from now on. Even though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now we know him so no more.

Weymouth New Testament
Therefore for the future we know no one simply as a man. Even if we have known Christ as a man, yet now we do so no longer.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Super Moderator

Welcome back @Christianchat_Chat.  Let me remind you that any form of proselytizing, including the quoting of scripture, should be confined to the Lion's Den.  As it stands, a christian perspective might be helpful to this particular thread; so your post will remain... for now.  Glad you're back with us.

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Moderator

Yes, a christian perspective would do the thread some good. Without going through merely posting verses like that. We some personal input from Christianchat on how he is interpreting it. 

 

1 hour ago, Christianchat_Chat said:

merican Standard Version
Wherefore we henceforth know no man after the flesh: even though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now we know him so no more.

 

Now Robert, of course, will have his own interpretation of the same verse from the context in which Robert is interpreting the bible. 

 

@Robert_Tulip 

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Joshpantera said:

Yes, a christian perspective would do the thread some good. Without going through merely posting verses like that. We some personal input from Christianchat on how he is interpreting it. 

 

 

Now Robert, of course, will have his own interpretation of the same verse from the context in which Robert is interpreting the bible. 

 

@Robert_Tulip 

 

the verse seems to contradict what was said:

 

  On 1/18/2021 at 3:01 AM, LogicalFallacy said:

Excuse my interjection, but isn't Christianity without Jesus like water without the hydrogen component? Isn't the Jesus character kinda fundamental to Christianity? The whole basis of Christianity is that Jesus was Gods son who died to take away the sins of the world and save us all. Take Jesus away and you haven't got Christianity /

 

 

and agree with the topic. 🙂

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/19/2021 at 2:38 AM, Weezer said:

 Isn't it possible that Jesus existed, believed he was the son of god because he was conditioned to believe that, felt compelled to do what he could to better mankind, was a bright, charismatic young man who studied religion and philosophy, possibly under the Essenes, and preached the wisdom of those who proceeded him, which in simple form is the golden rule?  Concern for "WE", as opposed to "ME".  

·       I do apologise for replying at such length, but I must say I really appreciate the quality of the questions here, which inspires me to provide careful responses.

·       At first sight the suggestion of a historical Jesus looks reasonable, but a small amount of digging reveals serious anomalies in the paradigm. 

·       This Jesus looks like a sufferer of Jerusalem Syndrome, with nothing approaching the world-changing social cachet and charisma described in the Gospels. That creates the dilemma of the incredible shrinking messiah. To be historical, Jesus must have had almost none of the features ascribed to him in the Bible, creating the paradox of how he possibly started the world’s biggest ever religion from such a humble basis. 

·       The astronomical framework I have described indicates that the Jesus of the Gospels and Epistles was first prophesied and then deliberately constructed in imagination as a cosmic character seen as necessary for the salvation of the world.  In my view this cosmic construction of Christ was entirely based on the exact match between his dates and the visible start of the new zodiac age, as the equinox point crossed into Pisces in 21 AD.  It appears the prophetic tradition saw the emergence of a messiah at that time as necessary, based on the ‘as above so below’ reasoning of the Lord’s Prayer, on earth as in heaven. A new age observed in the cosmos required a new age on earth.

·       The suggestion that a delusional person may have tried to live out such predictions says nothing about the actual existence of the Jesus Christ of the Gospels. A number of figures both ancient and modern have had messianic pretensions.  Carl Jung in Answer to Job speculated that someone who was aware of the prophecies may have tried to project himself into the identity of Christ. 

·       The problem is that the overall story still rests far more on imagination and myth and distortion than on history.  The extant data are better explained by non-existence and invention.

·       The absence of any external corroboration of the Jesus character described in Mark’s Gospel is a major weakness for such an allegedly important person.  This Jesus failed to make discernible impression on the main writers of his place, genre and time, notably Philo, Josephus and Paul, making the entire passion narrative open to suspicion as something that would have been noticed if it happened. 

·       Philo developed the Logos doctrine expanded by John, and represented Israel to Rome during the purported life of Christ, but provided no indication of having heard of the alleged ‘King of the Jews’. 

·       Josephus was the main historian of Israel in the period of Christ.  Like the purported Jesus, Josephus came from Galilee, but his only mention of Jesus is a blatantly fraudulent later insertion (the Testimonium Flavianum) to overcome Christian embarrassment at this gap. Josephus did not consider Nazareth of sufficient note to mention in his long list of the villages of Galilee, supporting the idea that Nazareth was a later invention to cover up the primary role of the Nazarene sect in the manufacturing process. Despite his comprador role, Josephus would have been proud enough of his fellow Galilean to discuss him if he existed.   

·       Paul fails to say anything that clearly locates his Jesus Christ in place or time except in the most vague and ambiguous terms. He says he only knows Jesus from scripture, (Galatians 1:11-121 Corinthians 15:3-8Romans 16:25-26) suggesting the only important thing about Jesus was his resurrection, not his life or teachings.  That is all compatible with invention, not literal history.

·       There is abundant evidence that the Gospel stories were based on older myths from Israel, Egypt and Greece.  That model suggests deliberate manufacture

On 1/19/2021 at 2:38 AM, Weezer said:

Why couldn't a movement be started based simply on the wisdom of the ages, very well summed up by "Jesus" statement to love neighbor as self.   

·       I don’t think the eternal wisdom is enough to start a mass movement.  Religious movements intrinsically need gripping and imaginative stories that touch popular emotions, not just dry philosophy. 

·       As vividly symbolised in the Fantasia Sorceror’s Apprentice with the mops coming to life, those who set such stories running cannot control how they will work out in practice.

The Jesus story started out, in my view, with a secretive Gnostic mystery wisdom school, linked to international likeminded groups.  These philosophers imagined Jesus as a Platonic philosopher king, and thought they could control the fictional exoteric message in Mark’s gospel, to initiate acolytes into the esoteric cosmic wisdom that lay behind the public historical Gospel.  Unfortunately, the exoteric public message came to life like a pack of magic mops, and totally overwhelmed its creators.  There was no sorcerer who knew an antidote spell, and the original story was condemned and suppressed as heresy.

On 1/19/2021 at 2:38 AM, Weezer said:

The only thing missing would be his divinity and all the "magic". 

·       Missing the supernatural magic should not be any cause for mourning.  Miracles are only parables anyway. But there is something else that your simplified version would also miss.  The underlying ethical message in the Jesus story is that the world is on a path to destruction and needs a saviour. I understand that such world-historical apocalyptic thinking is highly controversial, but it seems to me to be central to the attraction of Christianity, even as people have puzzled over what it could mean.  

·       The confusion arose from how that story was twisted by the church to make salvation and damnation mean personally going to heaven or hell on the basis of dogmatic belief, where it seems to me the original intent was moral warnings about the fate of the earth.  My view is that the original meaning was far more secular, practical and global, as for example seen in the line from Rev 11:18 that the wrath of God is against those who destroy the earth, combined with Matthew 24:14this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

Divinity is a complex idea, involving the presence of the sacred in the world.  There is real value in retaining divinity as meaning the things we hold sacred, even while seeing the idea of divinity as supernatural entities who intentionally intervene in the world as an obsolete and degraded corruption.

On 1/19/2021 at 2:38 AM, Weezer said:

 

 

On 1/19/2021 at 2:38 AM, Weezer said:

To me that would be evidence based salvation.

The ‘love thy neighbour’ ethic is necessary but not sufficient for the salvation of the world.  Salvation is not just about the individual, but only makes sense in terms of planetary flourishing.  And that is something that needs a scientific approach presented in a compelling moral framework.

On 1/19/2021 at 2:38 AM, Weezer said:

I think bringing in all the cosmology, etc, etc, just "muddies the water".  At least it boggles my mind.  If your going to market a movement, it needs to be clear and simple to understand.

·       The problem Weezer, is that conventional Christianity is about as transparent as lead.  To overcome that opacity requires a scientific explanation of the most plausible way that Christianity evolved.  If that explanation partly involves analysis of the astrological beliefs of the founders, then that has to be confronted, not ignored.  

·       Presenting such findings in a popular way is a bit like how we can all have opinions about atomic power and the internet without understanding relativity and quantum mechanics, while accepting that experts have studied the physical basis.

·       But for Christianity, there is a stubborn refusal by church people to even engage the possibility that Jesus might not have existed, let alone to explore how to reconcile the evidence with the laws of nature.  

On 1/19/2021 at 2:38 AM, Weezer said:

And I would add that to get a movement started in the USA, you need some "famous" hero (or group) to help get it off the ground.

I am more concerned to engage in expert conversation, with the hope of then generating momentum for a public conversation once the scientific basis has some acceptance and leverage.  At the moment, I am discussing with some academics possibly doing a PhD on The Age of Aquarius in Christian Theology.  That would be a way to collect research I have done on related topics over the last two decades.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Robert_Tulip said:

·       But for Christianity, there is a stubborn refusal by church people to even engage the possibility that Jesus might not have existed, let alone to explore how to reconcile the evidence with the laws of nature.  

 

I think you may have a template for secularization of a religion by looking at Judaism.  While there are still die hard sects, there is also a rather vocal portion of the population calling themselves "secular jews" and even "secular/humanist rabbis".  They are concerned with the truth in the holy book as opposed to the truth of the holy book.  I read somewhere long ago that many rabbis no longer consider Noah or Moses actual historical figures, but figurative figures (couldn't help myself) meant to teach a deeper message.

 

Thank you for this thread, it is an interesting read.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Moderator
14 hours ago, Christianchat_Chat said:

 

the verse seems to contradict what was said:

 

  On 1/18/2021 at 3:01 AM, LogicalFallacy said:

Excuse my interjection, but isn't Christianity without Jesus like water without the hydrogen component? Isn't the Jesus character kinda fundamental to Christianity? The whole basis of Christianity is that Jesus was Gods son who died to take away the sins of the world and save us all. Take Jesus away and you haven't got Christianity /

 

 

and agree with the topic. 🙂

 

Biblical interpretation. Such a wonderful thing. In context those verses do not appear to be talking about Christianity without Jesus IMO, but that he walked in flesh but now his form is changed because as the story goes Jesus was caught up to heaven and 500 saw it. However Jesus is still central to the story, IMO opinion and the opinion of 2 billion Christians I can assume.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/20/2021 at 11:20 AM, Christianchat_Chat said:

even though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now we know him so no more

Christian Chat, I’m afraid I can’t detect your point.  You quote 2 Cor 5:16, but is your aim to say that Christ existed or did not?  The verse considered in isolation just suggests that literal historicism was a mistake that Paul and his readers have replaced with a purely spiritual understanding.

 

The most informative writer I have encountered on these topics is Earl Doherty, who provides a systematic analysis of the Pauline epistles against the heuristic that Christ was invented.  I encourage all to read Doherty’s great essay Christ As "Man": Does Paul Speak of Jesus as an Historical Person? His analysis of terms such as “in the flesh” helps to see that conventional reading of the Epistles through the prism of Mark’s fable of Jesus of Nazareth has grossly distorted theological understanding across the millennia.   A key problem is that whenever Paul has the opportunity to reference the teachings of Jesus to support his own arguments he systematically fails to do so, which was essentially because the “Jesus of Nazareth” character was only invented by Mark after Paul’s Epistles were written.

 

My own view of “in the flesh” in the context of Rom 1:3, where Paul says Christ came of the seed of David according to the flesh, is that this only means the story of Jesus developed among the Jews. And indeed as Doherty points out, Psalm 2:6-7 provides the midrash source for Paul’s source of the imagined Davidic heritage of Christ, entirely sufficient for this ‘in the flesh’ reference with no historical Jesus.

 

The complete absence from Paul’s ideas of any clear biographical information about Jesus or sense of clear dependency on his teachings makes this allegorical reading far more credible and explanatory than the tortuous efforts to find Jesus of Nazareth somewhere in Paul.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Moderator
On 1/19/2021 at 7:20 PM, Christianchat_Chat said:

International Standard Version
So then, from now on we do not think of anyone from a human point of view. Even if we did think of the Messiah from a human point of view, we don't think of him that way anymore.

 

Yes, if this is saying that they mistakenly took the story historical, but no longer take it literally in that way, then verse means something completely different than reading Mark (which came later) into Paul's earlier written narrative. Paul was writing this verse 'prior' to the existence of Mark's gospel. 

 

Reading it the other way, Mark first then Paul, it seems as though they knew a human jesus but now he's gone, up and away, into the spirit world above the earth somewhere in the multi-layered, "heavens." 

 

Robert, through Earl Doherty and other's, has an alternative way of interpreting the NT drama. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

  

On 1/19/2021 at 4:54 PM, Weezer said:

And how do you get around the fact that many people aren't drawn to logical, evidence based solutions that involve them in thinking and doing something monotonous to bring "salvation" to the world. 

·       This is a great question.  What is needed is for the logical, evidence-based solutions to be packaged in ways that make them saleable and attractive to a mass audience, while retaining their integrity and coherence. 

·       My view is that this is exactly what the original authors of Christianity tried but in large measure failed to do.  By imagining Jesus as a philosopher king and packaging him as the Gospel miracle worker, the authors of the Gospels thought they could control the political movement they were starting, but they did not appreciate how the power would be ripped from their hands and their work would be distorted.

·       Or maybe they did appreciate the likelihood of such a corrupted result?  My view is that the original authors had a very high astronomical understanding, and constructed Jesus in a two-step model, as avatar of both the Zodiac Age of Pisces beginning in 21 AD, with its astrological theme of compassionate mystical belief, and of the Zodiac Age of Aquarius, beginning around now, with its astrological theme of innovative humanitarian knowledge.  The story at Luke 22:10 of the man with the water jug (Age of Aquarius) showing the way to the upper room (integration of earth with the visible heavens) provides a metaphor for this natural cosmology.

·       On this hypothesis, the spreading of the gospel around the world over the course of the Age of Pisces as outlined in Matt 24:14 aimed to ‘prime the pump’ for a coming New Age, when human culture would have evolved sufficiently to see a path toward operating on the Christian principles of the Sermon on the Mount and the Last Judgement, when the response to a Christ figure would be dialogue rather than crucifixion. 

·       My view is that the Gospel authors imagined the Dawn of the Age of Aquarius as the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, the ‘seventh day’ of creation in the day-millennium scheme of Psalm 90:4, the millennium of rest and restoration needed to heal the planet after the ravages of human destruction over the last six thousand years.

·       I see this model of time as a way to integrate science and popular myth, serving the serious political need to explain the climate apocalypse in Christian terms.  With the world hurtling toward collapse and conflict due to the fragility and sensitivity of our economy and politics in the context of a brittle natural climate, we are in a situation where the mythology of the four horsemen - death, disease, hunger and war – provides a major literal risk of the impending planetary future.

·       The tectonic pressures of planetary warming will continue their remorseless increase toward breaking point unless there is a paradigm shift that integrates climate solutions with an acceptable cultural framework, including some level of respect for cultural traditions. 

·       Preventing such catastrophic outcomes can be supported by exploring how such real results were imagined in ancient times, and how this realistic imagination, the ‘won’t be water but fire next time’ idea of 2 Peter 3:7, was concealed in the popular language of symbolic mythology in the Bible.

I wrote a paper last year on the arithmetic of climate stability. It got partly through peer review in a leading scientific journal, but was not published due to my refusal to accept the opinions of one peer reviewer.  This paper sets out my views on climate solutions in detail, with only marginal allusion to religion with the idea of integral ecology. I expect I will circulate it publicly soon.

On 1/19/2021 at 4:54 PM, Weezer said:

They want the magic of god, or the Donald Trumps of the world, or pompous priests in fancy garb to save them through simply believing, and going through elaborate rituals.  Even rioting and killing for their "saviors".  The golden rule is too boring for them.  They want sensational experiences and immediate gratification.  

·       Recognising that popular culture operates at an ignorant and emotional level does not mean we should treat people with contempt.  The integration of the messages of science and religion is necessary to steer the world onto an ethical path, aiming to overcome the polarisation of politics toward mutual respect and reconciliation.  The problem is that the corruption of politics makes it a sphere where scientific messages get highly distorted, by both left and right. Such distortions by the right are widely noted, but the left-wing idea that decarbonising the economy is a sufficient response to climate change is an equally distorted and polarising message in my view.

On 1/19/2021 at 4:54 PM, Weezer said:

Yes, I think logical thinking is our salvation, but what is the solution for getting around the emotional, magical thinking?  I am serious about this.  Anyone have any suggestions?

·       My hope is that the steady increase of planetary integration illustrates that the old magical ideas of “salvation” have to be replaced by logic and evidence.  Processes such as the rise of the internet, the growth of world trade, and even the epidemiology of the pandemic generate the need for scrutiny, transparency and accountability in ways that old-fashioned beliefs have no answers for. 

·       Old beliefs can be reimagined.  Salvation through “going to heaven” is a metaphor for fixing the planet, while damnation through “going to hell” is a metaphor for planetary collapse and conflict. 

·       Finding the hard and narrow path that leads to salvation (Matt 7:14) in a scientific world requires the ethical observation that the emotional magical thinking that pervades popular religion is in fact the wide and easy highway to hell. 

·       Shifting Christianity onto a scientific ethic, which means recognising that Jesus was a fictional invention, seems to me the best way to put logic into the centre of public debate.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Robert, sometimes I have trouble following you, but I like the general direction you are going with your ideas.  THANKS!

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Backtracking somewhat, I see your arguments for Jesus not being a real person, and considered that myself.  But after finding the Gnostic Gospels, that seemed to describe him as more of an average person, but were thrown out of the canon, I decide that he possibly existed.  I am having a hard time understanding why people insist he DID NOT exist, when we really don't know for sure.  Would it make your arguments more palatable to some if you took a more agnostic stance on this issue?

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Weezer said:

Robert, sometimes I have trouble following you, but I like the general direction you are going with your ideas.  THANKS!

Thanks Weezer, I am always happy to discuss anything that is unclear.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Robert, you say love thy neighbor ethic is necessary, but not sufficient for the salvation of the World.  I argue that love neighbor as self covers it all.  That is why I think the "commandment" is so profound.  It is concern for the wellbeing of everyone in the world, including yourself. 

 

To me it implies that we should be interested in researching whatever is in the best interest of mankind.  That includes studying how to take care of our environment (the world), as well as how to raise our kids to be healthy, respectful and productive adults, and looking at healthy economic policies, how to best get along with other countries, maximize our health, our minds, etc.  I never thought it was just about the individual.  It is a whole different "mindset" that gets us away from power hungry "meism", and tribalism. 

 

Dissecting all the ancient philosophy is interesting to some, but do you need all of that to point out the benefits of logical, evidence based thinking?

 

My thoughts would be to find a wealthy, (hopefully well known)  humanist person or organization to market the approach.  A pipe dream??

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...



×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Guidelines.