- At 05:44 PM 4/10/99 -0700, Jon wrote:
>Joe wrote:1. Ian operates from the logical left hemisphere. Your argument clearly
>> I see your point Jon. However, to pull it off you need bigger firepower.
>> matters stand, Ian wins this match with a knockout.
>Just to refine a bit, you mean I have been knocked out on all three of my
>assertions: He lived, he influenced people, and he died a criminal? Or,
>might there be a split decision? Also, do you say that the majority of
>historians disagree with me and agree that Jesus isn't historical?
comes from the intuitive right hemisphere. In any argument *based upon
reasoning*, the left hemisphere always wins.
2. Of course, the matter isn't closed. You can call on the higher centers of
the brain. You can trump logic with wisdom. That's what I meant by my
reference to Joseph Campbell. He is an example of an intuitive genius who
trumps everyday reasoning with wisdom.
3. It also seems your discussion with Ian is lacks an agreed upon set of
parameters. You have accepted his description of the turf as history. That
concedes far too much. Is the issue really history? History has certain
methods and standards. Those methods and standards can be a tough jury.
4. Is the issue, instead, as you put it, whether Yeshu lived, whether he
influenced people, and whether he was crucified? This is not purely a
historical method question. Individual intuition can come in. You can
reference your whole life experience. Individual judgment is required.
Wisdom can play a role.
5. Also, what is acceptable burden of proof? The most plausible explanation?
More likely than not? Clear and convincing evidence? Proof beyond a
reasonable doubt? Absolute certainty?
6. Ian seems to require the very highest level of certainty. Indeed, his
wall of 160 seems to be a firewall designed by a "hound of heaven" (Jesuit)
to keep out the historical Jesus evidence. Notice how he warms to patristic
evidence. Notice that his wall corresponds to the birth period of the
7. To win your point doesn't require Ian's required level of certainty. More
likely than not is probably good enough. Indeed, for purposes of certain
discussions about Yeshu, the most plausible explanation standard is sufficient.
8. As for your question, I do believe the majority of historians regard
Yeshu as historical. But who cares what they think. Anyone who regards him
as ahistorical after considering the totality of the evidence lacks ordinary
With kind regards,
- At 10:24 PM 5/1/99 +0200, Ian wrote:
>>What about the valid knowledge that Iesu is not shown to be a Hebrew orWell, is your example apt? Was he born in Russia? If so, was John sometimes
>>Aramaic name? Do we simply ignore that information? Do we ignore the fact
>>that the name logically and inferentially appears to be a translation of
>>Yeshu, just as Yuz is a Persian translation, just as Issa is an Arabic
>>translation? Do we ignore the historic human tendency of cultures to
>>translate his name into culturally comfortable format? By what principle
>>of logic are we barred from weighing all this information, along with
>>other relevant information, and exercising our human judgment?
>Got a mate called John Trubretsky. Russian ancestors. Perhaps you wanna
>tell me that his real name is Ivan?
given as a name in Russia during the period of his birth, the way Sascha is
sometimes given here in the United States?
Your example aside, the fact of the matter is, all of us are really
weighing the same information here regarding the Man's name. Exercising the
powers of human judgment. Evaluating the same circumstantial evidence. On
the one side we have Ian. Other the other side we have just about everyone
else in the world who has evaluated the question closely.
As for your position, you will have to admit, you also drawing inferences
from circumstantial evidence. You are reading a Greek name in a Greek text
and assuming the name has not been translated into a native language
friendly format. That's like your reading a world map in Encyclopedia
Britannica and blindly assuming that Japan, India, and Germany are native
language names for those countries. So your position is also a hypothesis.
While your hypothesis is based on some rather blind assumptions, the other
hypothesis is based on relative probability. Both could be wrong, of
course, but both fall within the realm of hypothesis. Which is part of my
>So when you read Britannica and see the names Japan, India, and Germany, do
>>>Just stick to the facts
>>You sound like Joe Friday.
>You don't appreciate good advice.
>>But you don't warrant a detective badge when you ignore clues.
>There are clues and there are clues. The detective's job is to sift through
>the clues, putting aside those that don't seem to be fruitful.
you put aside the fact that the volume in your hand is written in English?
When you go to texts written in the native language of those countries and
don't see those names, is that a clue to be put aside?
>>Indeed, absolutely no one has yet offered a hypothesis which explains anyThis is where western critical methods and reporting can help. While I have
>>of the Asian facts we have set out. What should we do with this evidence?
>>The birch bark Indian scripture dated 115 CE,
>Dated by whom, when, using what methods?
read repeated references to this scripture as dating to 115, none of these
works have described the precise dating method. The scripture is written in
the Shardic alphabet of ancient Kashmir on birch bark papyrus. The
passages in question, about 300 words are part of a much larger work which
are reported to have been compiled by Sutta in 115 CE.
It is my understanding that Sutta is a known historical compiler who did
his work around 115 CE. His work is part of a larger work known as
Bhavishya Maha Purana, one of the sixteen Maha Puranas. Generally speaking
this section of the Puranas relates to Brahma, the creator god. More
specifically, it is a book of events, information, and prophecies started
by the devotees of a solar cult which existed in the third century BCE.
The manuscript in question is a copy of the pre-115CE writings and
continues from it. As best as I can determine, the dating is based upon
the work of the Oriental Research Institute in Poona, India. It was
recently examined by the Kashmiri Director of Archaeology.
Why would a solar cult be interested in Jesus? Apparently they viewed him
as a sun god, or associated him with worship of a sun god.
This is fairly interesting since the work seems to place him as an
incarnation of God, in a context which does not suggest a Christian
propagandizing source (like Paul). Instead, we find a Hindu type
understanding. Thus, the Man says, "Know me as Isvara Putaram (Son of the
Lord, or Son of God) Kanaya Garbam (born of a virgin, or born of a girl ).
As for the latter, it could possibly mean virgin birth, or possibly he is
just making it clear that he is human born.
Isvara generally means the divine indwelling Lord. Patanjali uses this term
to basically describe the "hole in one" which can be achieved through
devotion to the indwelling Lord.
The circa 78 CE dating is based upon the reference to Isha Masih's meeting
with a Sakya king in about the year 78 CE at an ancient site near Pampur
Kashmir. Isha is described as a foreigner wearing long white robes. He
describes himself as hailing from a land far away where there is no truth
and evil knows no limits. A land of unbelievers. He says he suffered at
their hands. He says he was known as Issa (or Isha) Masih, i.e., Jesus Christ.
>>(which date just happens to coincide with aBy itself, the manuscript would mean next to nothing. It coincides,
>>inscription reference to Jesus at the Seat of Solomon temple in Srinegar,
>>in connection with its rebuilding),
>So all you need to just happen to do is demonstrate the factual content of
>the previous clause.
however, with a fairly large body of information. The Jews were ancient
settlers in Kashmir. Apparently after the Diaspora, they built the Seat of
Solomon temple in Srinegar. According to inscriptions on the temple, it was
rebuilt in the year 78 CE. These same inscriptions also noted, "During this
period Yuz Asaph declared his ministry. He was Yusu, the prophet of the
children of Israel."
Yuz Asaph is a common Asian name for this saint. We find reports of this
name for this saint arising just outside the Roman Empire. You find his
resting place at the Rozabal in Srinegar, with footprint etchings bearing
stigmata. Thus, the suggestion is that his efforts spanned the Persian
empire, and ultimately went east of the empire.
The name Yuz Asaph is sometimes translated as teacher of the purified, or
leader of the healed. Yusu, however, is the Persian form of Yeshu. So, it
seems possible that Yuz is derived from Yus which is derived from Yusu.
>So far as I know the earliest reports on this come from a Persian
>>the reports of dozens of Christian
>>priests in the second century court of the Kashmiri kings, the variety of
>>very old Kashmiri historical references to Jesus' presence in Kashmir.
>And then quote your ancient sources here, giving reliable dates for the
>textual accounts. The Christian documentation in comparison with the Early
>Indian materials is infinitely more documentable -- and you've seen how
>flimsy that is.
historical source Kamal- u- Din, written by the historian Al Shaikh
Said-us-Saddiq, who died in 912 CE. Reportedly the earliest Christians were
called Nasara and Kristani. "The Nasara had forty priests who were well
read in the Talmud, the Torah, the Bible and the Apocalypse of Abraham.
They would sit in the royal court and give verdict on cases referred to
them by the Raja of Kashmir." With the advent of Mahomet (post 570 CE) all
traces of the Kristani were wiped out, except for the tomb of Yuzu Asaph at
I have also heard it suggested that, even before Islam, Christianity was
driven south, into India, around the third century as a result of
barbarian invasions into Kashmir. There is also some suggestion of
Nestorian influence in North India, but this is later than the royal court
period referred to, which apparently refers to second and third century CE.
Of course, a ninth or tenth century history cannot be relied upon, for the
reasons you noted. But, it does represent the earliest recorded history of
Kashmir, and is part of a large body of consistent information. I also
think the matter deserves further investigation, since it describes a
unique picture of the spread of early Christianity.
>This will take more time than I have today. I will get back to this.
>>fact that the most straightforward reading of GThomas suggests that it
>>describes Jesus sometime after his crucifixion.
>Let me rephrase that: you believe that the best way to account for the
>Jesus of GTh is to assume that it refers to a post crucifixion period. Why
With kind regards,