John the Baptist
So my mom is on this tour of Greece and Turkey right now with some people from her church. Their itinerary follows the journey of John the Baptist (in case you were wondering under what religious circumstances I grew up, there it is. I got lucky, though, I honestly believe she's one of the "good" christians in that she seems to believe judging people is her god's business, not her own). I'll have to admit, as someone who loves to travel, and who's been to both Greece and Turkey, I think their trip sounds very cool. Following a route like that means that you'll see a lot of these off-the-beaten-path parts of the countries you're in, and I love that. It's so much more real than the stupid touristy nonsense. She also got a surprisingly well-printed guide book that included a lot of info about the Greek gods that would help them to understand what they were seeing. I was somewhat energized to talk to her about the Greek myths because I find them fascinating.
Anyway, the reason I'm posting is that she just emailed me about how they'd visited SJtB's burial site in Ephesus. So I'm curious what you all think about this idea. I mentioned off-hand to her that "I wonder how they know he's buried there..." Is there evidence that, say, there's no one buried there at all and it's just a symbolic site, or that it's someone else altogether buried there? I honestly don't know the facts, so I'm curious.
And if it really is the body of the man referred to as St. John the Baptist buried there, was he just a great writer of fiction that mesmerized millions of people over the centuries? I know there's practically no collaborative historical documents to support what he allegedly reported, so I question that this Jesus person ever existed at all, but I mean...if there's a body of a witness buried there...I get a little conflicted.
Just to be clear, I'm not proposing any truth or falsity here, just questioning.