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 Did Jesus Really Exist? (Part 5)
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Boron10
Religion Moderator

USA
1253 Posts

Posted - 12/11/2002 :  14:52:52  Show Profile Send Boron10 a Private Message
That's right! As I promise, so shall I deliver: here's the fifth wonderful installment in the DJRE? topic.

For a recap, you can check out Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, or the most recent Part 4.

Please continue all discussion on this topic here.

@tomic
Administrator

USA
4607 Posts

Posted - 12/11/2002 :  15:14:08   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit @tomic's Homepage Send @tomic a Private Message
quote:
Darwin Alagos: The New In Search Of :"ludicrous. We are talking about Byzantine Rome here not CBS News. We are talking about the overthrow of the Imperial Roman government by the use of Jesus the war god. We are talking about the over throw of all of Hellenism and the confiscation of all it's vast wealth and murder of its supporters by Jesus the god of love.
Can you seriously suggest that there were not "byzantine plots" in Byzantium?
Can you possibly suggest that a superman could come to Earth with super-powers and abilities far beyond those of normal men and not be noticed in his lifetime? That a magic god/man is a likely scenario but unscrupulous politicians (who became the richest most powerful people in the world) are beneath consideration?"
The first word says it all ludicrous.Again Slater please tell the rest of the human race HOW you came by this secret information and just how ALL the Classical Historians have missed it for over 1900 years? A quote from Slater(p.2 from the original post) sums it up,"I am perfectly capable of developing my own crackpot ideas. The composite/god status of Jesus is an opinion widely held by those involved in comparative mythology"


You have it wrong. It's more like the undercutting of the existing religious cast's power. There is a precedent for this in ancient Egypt which is quite well known. Of course, you deny that the bits and pieces of other religions we see in Christianity are what they are so you will not agree. But it is a possible situation and it would be a shrewd power consolidation and as i said it happened before. The only reason the same scenario in Constantinople is not considered as a sort of coup d'etat with the old Roman god's getting squeezed out is, quite possibly, because we are still under the sway of the religion that was manufactured as a replacement. It's not too hard to see why people gave up the old gods so fast.

1. The new religion was made up of bits and pieces of the old one. So it was more or less all familiar stuff.
2. They'd kill you if you kept worshipping the old gods.

Besides Egypt this same scenario played out to some degree in the USSR

@tomic

Gravity, not just a good idea...it's the law!

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Kaneda Kuonji
Skeptic Friend

USA
138 Posts

Posted - 12/11/2002 :  15:38:40   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Kaneda Kuonji a Private Message
You guys need to pic up the latest issue of Popular Mechanics. They analyzed, with forensic evidence, what Jesus looked like. It is at least an interesting read.

Rodney Dean, CI Order of the Knights of Jubal
Ivbalis.org

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@tomic
Administrator

USA
4607 Posts

Posted - 12/11/2002 :  15:57:32   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit @tomic's Homepage Send @tomic a Private Message
We all saw that, it was posted here weeks ago. The image was developed as a sort of composite image from skulls etc. of people living in the region at the time but they said quite clearly that it was a guess and that's it. It had nothing to do with descriptions from the Bible or misleading middle ages art. What they ended up with is a Joe Everybody circa 30 CE. The article is quite a stretch and is only useful in that it should make Christians aware that Jesus was not a white male with European features and that's about all it was good for.

@tomic

Gravity, not just a good idea...it's the law!

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ConsequentAtheist
SFN Regular

641 Posts

Posted - 12/11/2002 :  16:15:22   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send ConsequentAtheist a Private Message
Someone once told me: "If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you always got."

Does anyone have a suggestion as to how we might structure this discussion such that "Part 5" becomes more than a tired rerun of Parts 1-4?

For the philosophical naturalist, the rejection of supernaturalism is a case of "death by a thousand cuts." -- Barbara Forrest, Ph.D.
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@tomic
Administrator

USA
4607 Posts

Posted - 12/11/2002 :  16:46:00   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit @tomic's Homepage Send @tomic a Private Message
An easy to refer to synopsis of what facts we do have would help although even well known facts seem to be open to dispute. Do you think anything will help DA eliminate the stigmatism that covers up facts that don't correspond with his beliefs? I fear we will have just more of the same as long as we have believers that refuse to read anything that might tear down their belief system and simply ridicule that which they haven't read in the first place.

We could:

1. Make this forum moderated
2. Be a bit quicker to delete posts that are off topic and abusive

Choice 2 would help quite a bit I think

@tomic

Gravity, not just a good idea...it's the law!

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darwin alogos
SFN Regular

USA
532 Posts

Posted - 12/11/2002 :  20:43:59   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send darwin alogos a Private Message
quote:
Posted - 12/06/2002 : 12:07:58
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

First, the you claim to have proof that Jesus never existed, when asked to supply evidence you give none.
So we are 108 posts into the fourth thread devoted to this topic. After all this you decide to misrepresent what I have been saying since post one/ thread one.
There is no smokescreen, those clouds are only in YOUR head.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
-------
I learned something ... I learned that Jehovah's Witnesses do not celebrate Halloween. I guess they don't like strangers going up to their door and annoying them.
-Bruce Clark
There's No Toilet Paper...on the Road Less Traveled


ReasonableDoubt
Skeptic Friend



286 Posts
Posted - 12/06/2002 : 12:24:38
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by darwin alogos
First, the you claim to have proof that Jesus never existed, ...
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- RD:

Where?
quote:
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by darwin alogos
So you admit your theory has no PROOF, ...
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------RD:

I honestly don't know if you fabricate this crap out of stupidity or deceit.
quote:
DA: It really must suck having that foot in your mouth all the time?




On DJRE #4 Slater denied ever stating that he had any evidence that Jesus didn't Exist. However, Slater said on the Original DJRE #1 post: "We have no facts on which to base a claim that there was a historic Jesus.
We do have enough evidence to the contrary to make any such claim highly suspect." Now which is it do you or do you not have evidence which proves that he didn't exist

To deny logic you must use it.To deny Jesus Existed you must throw away all your knowledge of the ancient world. To deny ID
you must refute all analogical reasoning. So the question is why deny?
Edited by - darwin alogos on 12/13/2002 13:44:07
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Slater
SFN Regular

USA
1668 Posts

Posted - 12/11/2002 :  23:46:53   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Slater a Private Message
The evidence to the contrary are the myths of Mithra and Dionnysus which match the Jesus story. They are known fictions. Retelling them and changing the names to Jesus does not alter the fact that they are fiction.
But then you already have the link to DJRE #1 and could have easily read that there

-------
I learned something ... I learned that Jehovah's Witnesses do not celebrate Halloween. I guess they don't like strangers going up to their door and annoying them.
-Bruce Clark
There's No Toilet Paper...on the Road Less Traveled
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ktesibios
SFN Regular

USA
505 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2002 :  01:52:52   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send ktesibios a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by darwin alogos

On DJRE #4 Slater denied ever stating that he had any evidence that Jesus didn't Exist. However, Slater said on the Original DJRE #1 post: "We have no facts on which to base a claim that there was a historic Jesus.
We do have enough evidence to the contrary to make any such claim highly suspect." Now which is it do you or do you not have evidence which proves that he didn't exist



I'm strongly reminded of the bit at the end of Plan Nine from Outer Space where Bunny Criswell demands of the camera "can you prove it didn't happen?".

I'm also reminded of Mark Twain's essay on the Shakespeare controversy in Sketches Old and New. In it he points out that there was no shortage of people ready and willing to tell "I knew him when" stories about himself, now that he had become a literary celebrity, that he existed in official records, having held a Mississippi river pilot's license, that in the West there were plenty of miners, reporters, editors, bartenders and cops who could personally verify his existence along with some of his whereabouts and activities and that these witnesses had appeared in contemporary print. This he contrasted with the sparse and pedestrian record left behind by the historical William Shakespeare, which provided only proof of the existence of a Stratford businessman by that name in the time period in question.

Now, I haven't the foggiest notion of the curent state of scholarship on the authorship of Shakespeare, but Twain's essay provides a clue to the basic question of the existence of a troublemaking itinerant rabbi by the name of Yeshua who became the focus of a new religion:

What primary, contemporary (not a generation later) sources are there to support the existence of a historical Jesus? What traces did a preacher who, according to the later official story achieved considerable celebrity in his life and ended up executed as a criminal leave in the record of his day?

If there be none, if the trail can be traced no farther back than secondhand stories from the Flavian period or the Five Good Emperors, then the evidence warrants only the Scottish verdict of "not proved".

In that case, one can believe what one wishes either way, but can't claim any basis for the belief other than faith or suspicion.

Most of what's been said in this never-ending collection of threads has gone well over my head (although when I curl up with Tacitus' Annals or Histories I'll be paying closer attention to certain things) but I don't recall anyone producing any evidence for the historical Jesus hypothesis that can be called both primary and truly contemporary.

"The Republican agenda is to turn the United States into a third-world shithole." -P.Z.Myers
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ConsequentAtheist
SFN Regular

641 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2002 :  07:14:18   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send ConsequentAtheist a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by ktesibios

..., if the trail can be traced no farther back than secondhand stories from the Flavian period or the Five Good Emperors, then the evidence warrants only the Scottish verdict of "not proved".

The problem is, in fact, more difficult than this, since 'first-hand' accounts would legitimately be suspect as pious fraud - a claim almost impossible to disprove, much less dispell.

Maybe this is a good place to start.
  • Is historicity a question properly subjected to a determination of {proved | not proved} or {probable | improbable}?
I suspect that it is the latter, although I must admit that I'm not entirely comfortable with the position.

For the philosophical naturalist, the rejection of supernaturalism is a case of "death by a thousand cuts." -- Barbara Forrest, Ph.D.
Edited by - ConsequentAtheist on 12/12/2002 07:15:07
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Infamous
Skeptic Friend

85 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2002 :  08:22:11   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Infamous a Private Message
Allow me to point out that although the Greek, Roman, and Norse pantheon were quite similar, none of these were the result of any State-driven conspiracy. The similarity of Mirthra and Dionysus is circumstantial evidence at best.

And remember what happened when Amenhotep IV tried to BS his own monotheistic religion and impose it on his people? Right after he died, they all went back to worshipping their old gods. The same thing should have happend with Christianity, had it been a government-created religion.

Anyways, what is simpler: That Jesus was a real person and founded his own religion OR that the entire religion and its founder were manufuctured as part of some Byzantine government conspiracy? Obviously someone hasn't been shaving with Ockham's Razor lately.
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ConsequentAtheist
SFN Regular

641 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2002 :  08:36:26   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send ConsequentAtheist a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Infamous

Anyways, what is simpler: ...? Obviously someone hasn't been shaving with Ockham's Razor lately.
That is a misapplication of Occam's Razor, e.g.,:
quote:
Here it is important to point out that nowhere does he assert that the simpler explanation is always more correct or that the more complex explanation is always less correct. Had he done so, he would have been mistaken and remembered quite differently. The point is to start from the simplest possible explanation and only make it more complex when absolutely necessary.

- see Occam's Razor
The simplest of all propositions is God Did It.


For the philosophical naturalist, the rejection of supernaturalism is a case of "death by a thousand cuts." -- Barbara Forrest, Ph.D.
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Starman
SFN Regular

Sweden
1613 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2002 :  08:39:33   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Starman a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Infamous
Anyways, what is simpler: That Jesus was a real person and founded his own religion OR that the entire religion and its founder were manufuctured as part of some Byzantine government conspiracy? Obviously someone hasn't been shaving with Ockham's Razor lately.



Must be the straw man. Looks like he could need a shave...

"Any religion that makes a form of torture into an icon that they worship seems to me a pretty sick sort of religion quite honestly"
-- Terry Jones
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Antie
Skeptic Friend

USA
101 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2002 :  09:17:02   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Antie's Homepage  Send Antie an ICQ Message Send Antie a Private Message
> That Jesus was a real person and founded his own religion OR that the
> entire religion and its founder were manufuctured as part of some
> Byzantine government conspiracy? Obviously someone hasn't been
> shaving with Ockham's Razor lately.

Occam's razor favors the simplest theory, not the most simple-minded theory.

Antie. DIES GAUDII.


Facies Fabulosarum Feminarum

If you can name all six of the females in the picture above without looking up their names, and you can read the Latin phrase, pat yourself on the back. You're smart.
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PhDreamer
SFN Regular

USA
925 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2002 :  09:18:00   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit PhDreamer's Homepage Send PhDreamer a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Infamous



Anyways, what is simpler: That Jesus was a real person and founded his own religion OR that the entire religion and its founder were manufuctured as part of some Byzantine government conspiracy? Obviously someone hasn't been shaving with Ockham's Razor lately.



I am having tremendous difficulty understanding how you can blithely dismiss four full threads of evidentiary arguments, with links to several hundred pages more, in favor of an a priori logical guideline. The historical Jebus argument long ago passed the 'unnecessary entities' primacy phase. We've moved on to balance of evidence. Try to keep up.

I believe that, as a species, human beings define their reality through suffering and misery.
-Agent Smith
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Slater
SFN Regular

USA
1668 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2002 :  10:16:02   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Slater a Private Message
Allow me to point out that although the Greek, Roman, and Norse pantheon were quite similar, none of these were the result of any State-driven conspiracy.
Then allow me to point out that you are mistaken. That sort of thing happened on an infrequent but regular bases.
Medusa the Gorgon was a political construction of two Persian Goddesses in a successful attempt to defame the Southern Persians.
Serapis was made by a decree from the provisional Greek government of Alexandria from the Greek God Apis and the Egyptian God Osiris. So successful was Serapis at fixing a peaceful coexistence between the Greeks and the Egyptians that the image of Serapis was later adopted as that of Jesus by the Romans…in case the "True face of Jesus" article got you wondering why we depict JC as we do.

And remember what happened when Amenhotep IV tried to BS his own monotheistic religion and impose it on his people? Right after he died, they all went back to worshipping their old gods.
That is exactly what did happen. The Emperor Julian (the Apostate) reinstated Hellenism. But, because Hellenists were tolerant of others religions he did not ban Christianity out right (a dicision he regreted in his writings) but passed laws that specifically forbid Christians of one sect from murdering Christians of other sects. Unfortunately he was killed early into his reign and the Christian persecution of the poor Hellenists resumed.

-------
I learned something ... I learned that Jehovah's Witnesses do not celebrate Halloween. I guess they don't like strangers going up to their door and annoying them.
-Bruce Clark
There's No Toilet Paper...on the Road Less Traveled
Edited by - Slater on 12/12/2002 10:25:43
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