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PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:18 pm 
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Early Church Father Tertullian (160-220 C.E.), an "ex-Pagan" and Bishop of Carthage...

...ironically admits the true origins of the Christ story and of all other such godmen by stating in refutation of his critics, "You say we worship the sun; so do you."

- "Christ Conspiracy" 158

In Christ Conspiracy page 158, Acharya cites Joseph Wheless who is quoting a paraphrase from the Catholic Encyclopedia. Wheless made a minor error when he called Tertullian a "Bishop of Carthage" in Forgery in Christianity when he was actually, "Presbyter of Carthage." It's minor but, the irrational and pseudo-skeptical use little things like this to dismiss Acharya's entire body of work even though she was quoting Wheless and the error was his. It's all a distraction as you will see further down this post.

Acharya made the necessary correction at her Notice of Errata and Addenda page. I find that page interesting because as you read at the top it says:
Quote:
"...It should be kept in mind that the author had no assistance with this book, as she researched, wrote, typed, edited, proofread, typeset and did the illustrations and cover design and execution by herself. All of this work was done without any funding..."
http://www.truthbeknown.com/christconerrata.htm

I have even more respect for her work when I realize that she had no help whatsoever in any way. Doing the research and writing a book on this subject are difficult enough already but add to that the proofreading, typesetting, editing, indexing, illustrations, cover design etc on top of her recent creation of Stellar House Publishing are monumental tasks to take on. I am realizing what an enormous task indexing alone is right now for this type of material with all the numerous languages and their spellings, transliterations, cross-references etc. GEEESH!

Moving on ...

Tertullian's Apology & Ad Nationes

A snippet of Ch. 16 of Tertullian's Apology:
Quote:
"... Others, again, certainly with more information and greater verisimilitude, believe that the sun is our god. We shall be counted Persians perhaps, though we do not worship the orb of day painted on a piece of linen cloth, having himself everywhere in his own disk. The idea no doubt has originated from our being known to turn to the east in prayer. But you, many of you, also under pretence sometimes of worshipping the heavenly bodies, move your lips in the direction of the sunrise. In the same way, if we devote Sun-day to rejoicing, from a far different reason than Sun-worship, we have some resemblance to those of you who devote the day of Saturn to ease and luxury, though they too go far away from Jewish ways, of which indeed they are ignorant...."

- Catholic Enc. Tertullian
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/0301.htm

Quote:
"...in his Apology (16), Tertullian raises the subject of Roman gods in the shape of a cross or in cruciform: We have shown before that your deities are derived from shapes modelled from the cross. But you also worship victories, for in your trophies the cross is the heart of the trophy. The camp religion of the Romans is all through a worship of the standards, a setting the standards above all gods. Well, as those images decking out the standards are ornaments of crosses. All those hangings of your standards and banners are robes of crosses.3 Hence, Tertullian attested that the Romans bore images of not only a man but also gods on crosses, that they additionally possessed gods themselves in cruciform and that these images were objects of worship...."

"In its article on Tertullian, the Catholic Encyclopedia paraphrases the pertinent parts of the Church father's work thus:

"…your gods are images made on a cross framework, so you worship crosses. You say we worship the sun; so do you."

- Who Was Jesus? Fingerprints of The Christ (WWJ) (243-4)

That paraphrase is very similar to:
Quote:
"A few of the more refined of you think we worship the sun. Again, that is your practise[sic], not ours."

- Tertullian
http://www.tertullian.org/works/apologeticum.htm

Book 1, chapter 13 of Ad Nationes "The Charge of Worshipping the Sun Met by a Retort" has much in common with chapter 16 of Tertullian's Apology
Quote:
Chapter XIII - The Charge of Worshipping the Sun Met by a Retort

"Others, with greater regard to good manners, it must be confessed, suppose that the sun is the god of the Christians, because it is a well-known fact that we pray towards the east, or because we make Sunday a day of festivity. What then? Do you do less than this? Do not many among you, with an affectation of sometimes worshipping the heavenly bodies likewise, move your lips in the direction of the sunrise? It is you, at all events, who have even admitted the sun into the calendar of the week; and you have selected its day,215 in preference to the preceding day216 as the most suitable in the week217 for either an entire abstinence from the bath, or for its postponement until the evening, or for taking rest and for banqueting. By resorting to these customs, you deliberately deviate from your own religious rites to those of strangers. For the Jewish feasts on the Sabbath and "the Purification,"218 and Jewish also are the ceremonies of the lamps,219 and the fasts of unleavened bread, and the "littoral prayers,"220 all which institutions and practices are of course foreign from your gods. Wherefore, that I may return from this digression, you who reproach us with the sun and Sunday should consider your proximity to us. We are not far off from your Saturn and your days of rest."
http://www.tertullian.org/anf/anf03/anf ... 457_561810

The point is that Tertullian is clearly stating there were those who claimed Christianity was SUN WORSHIP or there would've been absolutely no reason for him to refute it on at least 2 different occasions in his Ad Nationes and in his Apologeticum. I've seen both theists and atheists make the claim that the Jesus myth &/or Jesus being equated with sun worship began in the 18th/19th century. This notion is quite obviously BUNK. There are many other instances throughout Acharya's works that demonstrate this fact of equating Jesus with the sun repeatedly. :wink:

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 22, 2009 10:31 pm 
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It looks like it was more than obvious to the people of the day that Christianity was merely a new solar cult on the block.

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The Jesus Mythicist Creed:
The "Jesus Christ" of the New Testament is a fictional composite of characters, real and mythical. A composite of multiple "people" is no one.

The celestial Origins of Religious Belief
ZG Part 1
Jesus: Hebrew Human or Mythical Messiah?


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 08, 2010 2:08 am 
Freethinkaluva22 wrote:

Moving on ...

Tertullian's Apology & Ad Nationes

A snippet of Ch. 16 of Tertullian's Apology:
Quote:
"... Others, again, certainly with more information and greater verisimilitude, believe that the sun is our god. We shall be counted Persians perhaps, though we do not worship the orb of day painted on a piece of linen cloth, having himself everywhere in his own disk. The idea no doubt has originated from our being known to turn to the east in prayer. But you, many of you, also under pretence sometimes of worshipping the heavenly bodies, move your lips in the direction of the sunrise. In the same way, if we devote Sun-day to rejoicing, from a far different reason than Sun-worship, we have some resemblance to those of you who devote the day of Saturn to ease and luxury, though they too go far away from Jewish ways, of which indeed they are ignorant...."

- Catholic Enc. Tertullian
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/0301.htm
.


There were some fathers of the church who have defended the mythological figure of the god Serapis, arriving to say that Serapis was none other than 'our' Joseph (the biblical character son of Jacob, sold by his brothers to egyptian merchants). Is it resulting all this to you?

Greetings

Littlejohn


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 08, 2010 11:50 am 
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Littlejohn wrote:
There were some fathers of the church who have defended the mythological figure of the god Serapis, arriving to say that Serapis was none other than 'our' Joseph (the biblical character son of Jacob, sold by his brothers to egyptian merchants). Is it resulting all this to you?

Greetings

Littlejohn

Interesting. Would you happen to have a link for further reading on this?

I've never heard this particular link to Serapis, but I have read the quote from the Emperor Hadrian(contemporary with the Apostolic Fathers), in which he said he witnessed Egyptian Christians worshipping Serapis and referred to him as the same as Christ, etc.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 08, 2010 3:15 pm 
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GodAlmighty wrote:
Littlejohn wrote:
There were some fathers of the church who have defended the mythological figure of the god Serapis, arriving to say that Serapis was none other than 'our' Joseph (the biblical character son of Jacob, sold by his brothers to egyptian merchants). Is it resulting all this to you?


Interesting. Would you happen to have a link for further reading on this?

I've never heard this particular link to Serapis, but ...


Me neither. It's certainly possible.

Quote:
I have read the quote from the Emperor Hadrian(contemporary with the Apostolic Fathers), in which he said he witnessed Egyptian Christians worshipping Serapis and referred to him as the same as Christ, etc.


Ah, you'll want to know that that story is a myth that goes around. The reference is to the Historia Augusta, containing a supposed letter of Hadrian. But the content is not as it is often represented. The letter actually accuses the Egyptians of being totally slack about religion, so much so that the same people go along to worship at cults which are totally opposed, without feeling any incongruity. But you should be able to find the text easily enough. Just beware of quote-miners who omit the context!

The Historia Augusta is these days considered a fourth century forgery, and while some of it is based on good sources, such as the now lost work of Marius Maximus, very popular in the 4th century, other portions were simply invented. So be a little careful when using it.

All the best,

Roger Pearse


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 08, 2010 8:08 pm 
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Agreed, checking the context is always a good thing. Whether it's a bible verse in question or whatever. Take for instance the context of Justins first apology. He's trying to reason with the pagans because they're persecuting Christians when the pagans themselves believe in the same things that they are persecuting Christians for. But it seems to me that the main reason the Christians were being persecuted was because these motifs in common were considered mysteries and it was a capital offense to be out divulging the ancient mysteries - virgin birth, death and resurrection of the God-Man, etc. - and so Christians were being viewed as worthy of capital punishment for breaking the law. I'd like to look into the full context with regard to Tertullian to look deeper into the issue.

_________________
The Jesus Mythicist Creed:
The "Jesus Christ" of the New Testament is a fictional composite of characters, real and mythical. A composite of multiple "people" is no one.

The celestial Origins of Religious Belief
ZG Part 1
Jesus: Hebrew Human or Mythical Messiah?


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 09, 2010 10:37 am 
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roger_pearse wrote:
GodAlmighty wrote:
Littlejohn wrote:
I've never heard this particular link to Serapis, but ...


Me neither. It's certainly possible.

Quote:
I have read the quote from the Emperor Hadrian(contemporary with the Apostolic Fathers), in which he said he witnessed Egyptian Christians worshipping Serapis and referred to him as the same as Christ, etc.


Ah, you'll want to know that that story is a myth that goes around. The reference is to the Historia Augusta, containing a supposed letter of Hadrian. But the content is not as it is often represented. The letter actually accuses the Egyptians of being totally slack about religion, so much so that the same people go along to worship at cults which are totally opposed, without feeling any incongruity. But you should be able to find the text easily enough. Just beware of quote-miners who omit the context!

The Historia Augusta is these days considered a fourth century forgery, and while some of it is based on good sources, such as the now lost work of Marius Maximus, very popular in the 4th century, other portions were simply invented. So be a little careful when using it.

All the best,

Roger Pearse


Right, well, I've read the quote out of the Historia, it is available on google books, or at least, it was when I read several months ago.
However, I was not yet aware that it is considered a 4th century forgery. Well, that's a bit of a shame. Although, not at all surprising. The 4th century seemed to be a sort of boom era for spurious works in the Christian world. Thanks in no small part to Constantine's reformation, I would imagine.
So since the objective of the rumor appears to be for the defamation of these particular Egyptian Christians, do you think there is any truth to the rumor at all, in spite of it not having originated with Hadrian?

So, to John, my bad. To put it more correctly- I have read the quote from the Historia Augusta, which it attributed(perhaps spuriously) to the Emperor Hadrian in which he was alleged to have witnessed Egyptian Christians worshipping Serapis and referring to him as the same as Christ, etc.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 09, 2010 10:55 am 
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GodAlmighty wrote:
Right, well, I've read the quote out of the Historia, it is available on google books, or at least, it was when I read several months ago.


The Loeb edition of the Augustan History is online, thanks to Bill Thayer. The Lives of Firmus, Saturninus, Proculus and Bonosus is the bit we want. These were a bunch of minor usurpers, and the lives are nearly entirely fiction, or so I understand.

The bit we're interested in is the life of Saturninus, a contemporary of Aurelian:

Quote:
7 Saturninus17 was a Gaul by birth, one of a nation that is ever most restless and always desirous of creating either an emperor or an empire.18

2 To this man, above all the other generals, because it seemed certain that he was truly the greatest, Aurelian had p399given the command of the Eastern frontier, wisely charging him never to visit Egypt.19

3 For, as we see, this far-sighted man was well acquainted with the Gallic character and feared that if Saturninus visited this turbulent land he might be drawn by association with the inhabitants to a course toward which he was by nature inclined.

4 For the Egyptians, as you know well enough, are puffed up, madmen,20 boastful, doers of injury, and, in fact, liars and without restraint, always craving something new, even in their popular songs, writers of verse, makers of epigrams, astrologers, soothsayers, quacksalvers.

5 Among them, indeed, are Christians and Samaritans and those who are always ill-pleased by the present, though enjoying unbounded liberty.

6 But, lest any Egyptian be angry with me, thinking that what I have set forth in writing is solely my own, I will cite one of Hadrian's letters, taken from the works of his freedman Phlegon,21 which fully reveals the character of the Egyptians.

8 From Hadrian Augustus to Servianus22 the consul, greeting. The land of Egypt, the praises of which you have been recounting to me, my dear Servianus, I have found to be wholly light-minded, unstable, and blown about by every breath of rumour. 2 There those who worship Serapis are, in fact, Christians, and those who call themselves bishops of Christ are, in fact, devotees of Serapis. 3 There is no chief of the Jewish synagogue, no Samaritan, no Christian presbyter, who is not an astrologer, a soothsayer, or an anointer. 4 Even the Patriarch himself, when he comes to Egypt, is forced by some to worship Serapis, p401by others to worship Christ. 5 They are a folk most seditious, most deceitful, most given to injury; but their city is prosperous, rich, and fruitful, and in it no one is idle. 6 Some are blowers of glass, others makers of paper, all are at least weavers of linen23 or seem to belong to one craft or another; the lame have their occupations, the eunuchs have theirs, the blind have theirs, and not even those whose hands are crippled are idle. 7 Their only god is money, and this the Christians, the Jews, and, in fact, all nations adore. And would that this city had a better character, for indeed it is worthy by reason of its richness and by reason of its size to hold the chief place in the whole of Egypt. 8 I granted it every favour, I restored to it all its ancient rights and bestowed on it new ones besides, so that the people gave thanks to me while I was present among them. Then, no sooner had I departed thence than they said many things against my son Verus,24 and what they said about Antinous25 I believe you have learned. 9 I can only wish for them that they may live on their own chickens, which they breed in a fashion I am ashamed to describe.26 10 I am sending you over some cups, changing colour27 and variegated, presented to me by the priest of a temple and now dedicated particularly to you and my sister. I should like you to use them at banquets on feast-days. Take good care, however, that our dear Africanus28 does not use them too freely."

9 So then, holding such an opinion about the p403Egyptians Aurelian forbade Saturninus to visit Egypt, showing a wisdom that was truly divine. ...


Interesting that the material is supposedly from Phlegon. I don't know whether the letter is considered genuine or not. I don't see why it should not be. The works of Phlegon were extant in the fourth century, I believe, since Eusebius and St. Jerome use them.

Quote:
However, I was not yet aware that it is considered a 4th century forgery. Well, that's a bit of a shame.


The work purports to be by six historians. But once you analyse who did what, who wrote what, etc, it apparently starts to get confused, and you come to the conclusion that all these six are in fact one man. The purpose of the composition is unknown. Some have speculated that it has an anti-Christian purpose to it.

Quote:
So since the objective of the rumor appears to be for the defamation of these particular Egyptian Christians, do you think there is any truth to the rumor at all, in spite of it not having originated with Hadrian?


Maybe so.

All the best,

Roger Pearse


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