"Did Jesus Live in 100 BC?" - Is it reliable?

Switch89
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"Did Jesus Live in 100 BC?" - Is it reliable?

Well, is it? Are there any scholarly criticisms of it?


Switch89
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Note: The full book can be

Note: The full book can be read for free here:

http://www.gnosis.org/library/grs-mead/jesus_live_100/index.htm

Ryan


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I live NOW, I am anointed,

I live NOW, I am anointed, as all are condemned to be anointed, as all is one.  


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The man/god motif is much

The man/god motif is much older than the Christian myth. Regardless if a man named Jesus existed magic does not. The Christian virgin birth is just as fictional as the prior claims of virgin births. And knowing what we know now about rigor mortis, claims of his death are just as absurd.

I can prove that George Washington existed, but it would be absurd to claim that he could fly around on a broomstick.

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Switch89, Some interesting

Switch89, Some interesting but tedious reading there. The realization that you/we/everything is god can't be taught by "traditional separatist religion" which is a road block perversion to reality self awareness. To look outward for god is a fatal error. One must reject faith. The history of religion, icons myths, events are interesting, and speak volumes of innate human ignorance, but offers little help to true Gnosis enlightenment, of eternal "oneness."   (yeah thermodynamics science !!!, one)  The bits of wisdom of ancient writings were a rejection of superstition dogma of god and self separation. "I am one with the father/mother/cosmos" ..... My buddha  jesus is atheist!      


http://www.gnosis.org/library/grs-mead/jesus_live_100/ch20.html
433

"Yet is the pupil still confused, for he still sees the physical body of his master before him.  It is not the lower man, the master goes on to explain, who can bring about this inner change of consciousness, it is the higher Man who does so.  Even the belief of the pupil that he actually sees the physical body of his master as a continuous thing is a sense-illusion, for every particle of it is in perpetual change.  Accordingly, with §6, Hermes lays down the great doctrine of the really True, the One Reality, as opposed to the perpetual change of manifested things.  How can This be perceived with mortal eyes?  he asks.

Hereupon Tat loses courage, and begins to think that the thing is too high for him, and that he has no higher mind.  But Hermes warmly sets aside such an impious doubt, and proceeds to explain why the spiritual "senses" of his pupil are clouded and blinded by the brutish or irrational things of matter.  The psychological problem is then stated in what seems to me to be a perfectly scientific fashion.  The soul "substances" or "forces" have no direction in themselves ; it is the will of man that can turn them upwards or downwards, so that they become manifest as virtues or vices.  These virtues or vices are simply the tendencies of the distinct substantial things, or component parts or forces, of the soul, rational if ruled by the reason, irrational if out of its control.

Indeed, it is the real "mind," the "man," that is the eternal idea of true humanity in us; it is, as it were, individual and yet not separate, sharing with all, sympathizing with all, yet showing forth in every manifestation some special aspect, one yet many, the

434

true source of fellowship and communion, the mystery of all mysteries, man and humanity in one, the that "which prevents us if we are about to do a thing not rightly," if we will but follow its loving guidance, and finally the only way by which we can know God and recognize our eternal sonship.

But we have already gone far beyond what was necessary for our immediate purpose, namely, the showing forth of the mystic and truly philosophic view of the nature of the birth of "the Christ" in the hearts of men, which was held by pious and thinking minds in at least the first century of our era.  In it we have in my opinion a setting forth of the mystery which can shock no man's intelligence, but which on the contrary was, I most firmly believe, the central truth insisted on by the great Master of Christendom Himself.  Those who, in spite of the evidence which is coming to light on all hands from a thoroughgoing analysis of tradition, still hold desperately to the gross materialism of the popular dogma of the physical virgin birth, must do so at peril of destroying the whole comfort derivable from the Life of Jesus.  For if, as it is claimed by theology, Jesus Christ was born miraculously without sin, what example can He possibly be for men born in sin?  There can be no "imitation" on these premises ; for miracle alone can imitate miracle.  The true Conqueror is he who wins his way through human nature, sinful human nature, towards the Divine; and unless I am grievously mistaken and read quite wrongly the records of the world's greatest Teachers, it is in this precisely that the triumph of a Christ consists."~~~~~


 ..... We are all Christ, God, One, Eternal .....

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*Is only slightly surprised

*Is only slightly surprised that Rook hasn't obliterated this topic yet, waits patiently for the inevitable*

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Rook and I have discussed

Rook and I have discussed this, and other alternative Jesus possibilities, and we both agree on one major point.  If we find Jesus in any capacity, to be historical, so fucking what?

Suppose somebody named Jesus lived in 100 BCE  Did he walk on water?  Raise dead people to life?  Curse fig trees for being out of season?  Get himself killed by a man who wasn't born yet?

Why would any Christian want to find Jesus at 100 BCE?  It would basically wreck the whole Biblical account of his life.  If the Bible can't even get the time and place right, why would we believe it about things like miracles?

 

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I have to agree with Hamby

I have to agree with Hamby here.  If by some (dare-I-say) miraculous discovery that Jesus even lived at the time he was said to have lived, it wouldn't be earth shattering to me, but I'm sure those historical Jesus scholars would put the smack-down on Christians everywhere.  Still, since this is a possibility and not a probability (the probability being that he never existd at all), and since GRS Mead is now dead and has been since 1933, I would not trust the information in that book.  a.) Too much has been found and discovered about antiquity during the Hellenistic and Roman periods since his death to discount a lot of what he said in all his books.  b.) His sources (the ones he actually did disclose) are extremely outdated by todays standards.  Rule of thumb - don't trust a book on Christian history written before 1970.  c.) A lot has been discussed and discovered concerning narrative and literature tradition in both ancient Judaism and biblical studies in general which Mead was never privy too since these discussions only started to happen thirty years ago.  While this is not a thorough or exhaustive study on why early twentieth-century scholars are not trustworthy, these three points will suffice.  Now, what would have to happen for GRS Mead's position is that a scholar would have to set out to revise his original thesis to modern standards using modern studies, which quite evidently will mean that Mead's thesis will not outlast his death. 

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I'm formulating a post

I'm formulating a post that's going to piss a lot of people off, and it deals particularly with my pet peeve of "future science."  What got me moving in the right direction was a chat I had with DamnDirtyApe over a particularly expensive beer last week.  I mention all of this because I think the principle is applicable to this discussion as well.

I'm generally annoyed by people who say things like, "In 1800, lots of people said humans would never fly," as if this is some justification for discounting mountains of scientific evidence as to the limits of physical possibility.  The thing is, it's true that science will never know the answers to all questions, but within fields that we do have lots of answers, it becomes exponentially less likely that our conclusions will be overturned the more we learn.

Take evolution for example.  Five years after Darwin released Origin, it would be fair for a contemporary to say that it was relatively likely that his thesis would be overturned or seriously altered in the future.  There simply wasn't an enormous amount of corroboration in the scientific community, and there were a LOT of major holes.  Most notably, Darwin didn't know what the unit of heredity was!

Once DNA was discovered, and we were able to quantify the unit of heredity, it became nearly impossible to refute evolution.  Since then, we've built on that discovery by leaps and bounds.  It is simply impossible today to deny the reality of evolution, and it's damn hard to deny the fundamentals of the theory of evolution.

Now, if we were to graph the probability that evolution was wrong against the amount of data we have, it wouldn't be a straight line.  It would be much more like a sharp curve upward.  As we accumulate more data, the odds of us being wrong about evolution become staggeringly bad.  The same is true of physics.  In 1800, our understanding of the laws of aerodynamics was minimal.  Today, if you give an engineer a plan for a particular proposed flying device, he can plug that information into a computer, and with virtually 100% accuracy, he can tell you not only whether it will fly, but what it's in-air capabilities will be.  The odds that we are wrong about the laws of aerodynamics are staggeringly bad because we have so much reinforcing data.

So, we can say generally that as science cumulatively verifies and adds to current theories, it becomes markedly less likely that science is wrong about the theory.

As you know, Rook, ancient history is often quite dependent on science.  A piece of pottery that was a mystery fifty years ago can be traced to very specific dates and regions now using advanced scientific tools that were not available before.  Furthermore, as more and more artifacts become available, certain events become more likely or less likely, in the same way that science becomes more certain of itself.

That is, a speculation about a particular individual might have been just that -- pure speculation -- fifty or a hundred years ago, but particularly in the last twenty or thirty years, it's become possible to add great levels of reinforcement and scientific accuracy to history.  As historians gather more and more data, and science reinforces that data, it becomes markedly less likely that the conclusion is wrong.

Now.... I say all of that to ask you a question.  Are you aware of any recent scientific contributions to the study of Biblical history that have added credibility to a particular Biblical account?  I'm not.  It seems to me that the only science I have seen for many years has gone much more in the direction of refuting the Bible as a historical document in any sense of the word.

The same can be said about Jesus.  The more we learn about the region where he supposedly lived, the more we realize that it's extraordinarily unlikely that the events described in the Bible could have taken place, even discounting the miracles.  As science adds validity to dates, times, and such, it becomes less and less plausible to believe that such a man existed.

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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people like Robert Price are

people like Robert Price are so far on the fringe that very few scholars take him seriously, hence why there are no criticisms as of yet.

 

but popular writers like J.P. Holding have responded merely by pointing out that his only evidence is the Toledoth Yeshu which is a 5th century document which places a 5th century rabbi in the same time period of Alexander Janeeus.

"If you can make any religion of the world look ridiculous, chances are you haven't understood it"-Ravi Zacharias