12264Re: [Death To Religion] Re: Fw: Darwin Admits Creator
- Nov 1, 2009Darwin admits Creator.
Praesto wrote: I'd be interested to see what book you are reading.
Everything is not made up. Maybe you mean to say that you or other
individuals do not adhere to the idea of the supernatural. However, the
Bible in terms of history and archeology are valid sources with real people
in real experiences, or do you not believe in the Jews because a book told
you not to?
Me: I tend to agree with you Praesto, there is, in fact a lot of evidence from archeology and other sources to confirm the truth of many things in the Bible.
Praesto: Christianity is not paganism. But again, what do you mean by these terms.
The very nature of paganism is to not be Christian.
Me: Actually this becomes problematical if you read the history of Christian thought. There is, in my opinion, a kind of reductionism and, consequentially, obscurantism, due, I suspect to, one the one hand, ossification (dogma), in the Roman Catholic Church and, on the other hand, Protestantism, which, in my opinion, really doesn’t have a clue! I say that no from a point of view of being hostile to Christianity, I’m not, I have never been a Christian nor did I know anything about it until my 30’s. For me it was simply a matter of curiosity about what do these people think anyway? And, in fact, if I chose to have a religion, I would be Orthodox, i.e. Greek/Russian etc. Christian. It is forgotten that the early Christian fathers counted such people as Moses, Aristotle, Plato etc. as Christians. That being the case it makes what is a Pagan rather problematical because clearly, the above were not Christians in the sense that we take the term
‘Christian’ to mean now a days.
Praesto: Why do you think Mithra was the "model" of christianity? What leads you to
believe that early Christians were, I guess plagerizing? , the Mithra idea?
Me: Actually Mithraism was a model for early Christian thought, the parallels are to numerous to dismiss. So, probably, was Buddhism for that matter. The word ‘Therapeutae’, a Gnostic sect, is, due to ‘Grimm’s Law’, (sound shifts between languages) simply, Theraputra, an alternative Sanskrit term for the Sthaviravada, now a defunct school of Buddhism.
But it is wrong to think in terms of “plagiarizing” at the time Christianity was coming into existence it was perfectly normal to attribute good ideas and texts to someone else. It was, in fact, a way of elevating an idea or especially, a way of praising or honoring a particular teacher. A sort of mind set quite alien to us but perfectly legitimate in the context of the times, a sort of ‘I am but a worm but Aristotle (to pick a name), would have thought of this because he was so intelligent and worthy’. That is why you often have false attributions of ancient texts. The ‘Mystical Theology’ for example is attributed to St. Dionysus. We now attribute authorship to the ‘pseudo-Dionysus to distinguish between the two people. But, in fact, ancient authors would have regarded this change as insulting and unspeakably rude! So what we call ‘plagiarizing’ was nothing of the sort, it was normal, so what the ancient Christians were doing was par
for the course. It’s in this sort of context that one needs to understand Christian origins.
It is not valid, in my opinion, to project into the past our view of the world. If one does that then one ends up with, I think, a kind of intellectual dishonesty. Things become dismissible, invalid or deceits, simply by an invalid criteria, viz a viz our world view, as if that were some ultimate criteria by which to measure all things. I remember reading somewhere the remarks of a physicist, I paraphrase: “We live in one reality at work and then, absurdly, go home, argue with our wives and yell at the kids, as if the Cartesian world was still valid. It takes the general public a couple of hundred years to assimilate and act on what we know to be fact.”
It does us all, I feel, well to remember that in a couple of 100 years time, if that, people will look back on us and make exactly the same sort of value judgments about things we think of as perfectly valid, but they will think are unspeakably cruel or incredibly ignorant.
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