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PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2012 9:34 am 
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The Jesus Mysteries Yahoo Group has the objective of examining historical evidence about Ancient Christianity, approached from a scholarly angle, mostly mythicist. It has not had extensive discussion on Egyptian origins as far as I am aware, but a post today from Jake Jacobs in response to material I posted has requested information as follows.

Jake wrote:
Hi Robert,
You wrote, "DM Murdock.. CIE is a brilliant piece of scholarship, ...provides an extensive discussion of ancient sources such as the Pyramid Texts, and of the role of the Therapeuts."
OK, great!
Here are the Pyramid Texts online. http://www.sacred-texts.com/egy/pyt/
and http://www.lib.uchicago.edu/cgi-bin/eos ... _1908_cop3
Could you show us a few precursors of Christianity to be found there? I think a case can be made, but I shouldn't have to read Murdock since you are thoroughly familiar with her work and can point it out the source for us. Could you point out the unique contributions of DM Murdock? Things she was the first to note, if any. Jake


This post is at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/JesusMyst ... sage/66938

It is in reply to the following comment from me, #66937. I have already suggested that Jake read Christ in Egypt, but he requested a summary of key ancient sources, which I had given him with the link to the Booktalk discussion of CIE, where there is some discussion of the Pyramid Texts, for example regarding Isis. I am happy to engage with this group in more detail, although as Acharya knows, there has been some recent difficulty there with posters who are skeptical of astrotheology as such.

My comment was
Robert Tulip wrote:
Jake wrote "What role did the Alexandrian Gnostics play in bringing the Egyptian influence to Christianity?

The hypothesis I find most attractive is that the Alexandrian Gnostic Therapeuts were part of the invented cult of Serapis, the new religion designed after Alexander's conquest to make Egyptian religion acceptable to Greeks by syncretising the myths and removing the Egyptian animal worship. After the Roman destruction of Jerusalem, a new exodus of Jewish refugees entered Alexandria. The result then was the need for a new religion that would incorporate the essence of Israeli prophecy into the Serapis cult, and this provided the impetus for writing the Gospels, overlaying the Psalms and prophets onto the logos cosmology of Serapis.

The Serapis cult was heavily astrological, understanding the Logos as natural reason seen in cosmic patterns, but this natural dimension was incompatible with the Yahwist agenda of Christianity. For example the injunction against nature worship in Deuteronomy served to emphasise the transcendence of God, against the Egyptian tradition that saw God as immanent in natural objects such as the Sun, the Milky Way and the Nile.

Many traditions that we regard as Greek are in fact Egyptian. For example both Euclid and Ptolemy lived their whole lives in Egypt, and must have drawn heavily on Egyptian tradition, a debt that was concealed in subsequent Greek chauvinism. We also see this trend of Greek appropriation of Egyptian tradition in the Hermetic writings attributed to Hermes Trismegistus. A civilization that built the Great Pyramids and the massive temple complexes such as Karnak could not simply disappear without trace or legacy, and yet we find the racial prejudice against Egyptian tradition was so strong that the meaning of the hieroglyphics was completely forgotten for more than a thousand years.

I have not studied Philo in any depth, but would be interested in analysis of his role in relation to Gnosticism and its links to the old Egyptian traditions. One simple example of this, linking to Logos cosmology, is how the 'as above so below' cosmology from the Emerald Tablets of Thoth found its way into the Lord's Prayer, which in Greek has the word order 'as in heaven so on earth'. http://www.christusrex.org/www1/pater/JPN-gr-koine.html

Jake wrote": "Do you see the ankh as the origin of the Chi-Rho cross?"

Information on the Chi Rho is at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chi_Rho This article discusses how the Timaeus by Plato is a key source for the celestial origin of this symbol. There is debate about whether the arms of the cross represent the galaxy and zodiac, or as per convention, the galaxy and the celestial equator. In any case, ancient astronomy saw three great intersecting circles in the sky, and we can still see them today if we care to look, as the meeting of what Plato called the same and the different, eternity and time.

The Rho circle bears obvious similarity to the 'handle' of the ankh. But really, this cross motif has to be assessed within a cosmology. In ancient astronomy, the four corners of the sky were seen as forming a great celestial cross, and this flowed into the four sons of Horus, the four living creatures of Ezekiel and Revelation, and the four symbols of the evangelists. Both the ankh and the Chi-Rho cross have a shared origin in this natural cosmic observation, in my view.

Jake wrote "can you provide any direct links to ancient Egyptian sources (such as the Pyramid Texts) that illustrate possible influence on Christianity? I started out trying to do this for Massey one time, and had some success, but it is hard work. This is your area, so if you have any links to primary source material, that would be great."

Really, the best source I know for this is Christ in Egypt by DM Murdock. Murdock is pilloried for her controversial views, but CIE is a brilliant piece of scholarship, and has been sadly neglected because of the slander directed against her by apologists with their a priori rejection of her findings. She provides an extensive discussion of ancient sources such as the Pyramid Texts, and of the role of the Therapeuts.

I led a discussion on CIE at http://www.booktalk.org/christ-in-egypt ... -f180.html
The threads here examine the likelihood of Egyptian sources in comparing key figures such as Lazarus and Osiris, Jesus and Horus, Satan and Set, Mary and Isis, and John and Anubis.

Robert Tulip


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PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2012 12:09 pm 
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Thanks Robert. I would think that the Booktalk discussion of CIE would suffice, wouldn't you? If that's not enough then, they really need to read the book.

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Christ in Egypt: The Horus-Jesus Connection
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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2012 11:45 am 
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I've been having a lively exchange with people who argue that the cosmic features in Christianity, such as Christmas and Easter, were only added in in the third or fourth century, and similar implausible ideas.

Now they have asked me to get permission from Vishnu before posting the following comments


> Ray wrote: "What is your evidence that Isis was a virgin when she gave birth to Horus?"
>
> This is a question that has been discussed extensively, for example http://www.booktalk.org/christ-in-egypt ... 11019.html
>
> From that thread
>
> The Bremner-Rhind Papyrus called "The Festival Songs of Isis and Nephthys" orders that Isis & Nephthys are to be portrayed as two virgins whose wombs have never been opened. The songs say that Horus has already been born. So if Isis is a virgin whose womb has never been opened, yet she already has a son named Horus who will succeed Osiris, then clearly, Horus was born of a virgin. This text dated to around 312 B.C. according to the translator, Egyptologist Raymond O. Faulkner.
>
> From around 1200 BC in the temple of Seti I at Abydos a wall depicts Isis saying "I am the great virgin". On this same wall we see pictures of Horus, already born, and already fully grown. So clearly, if Horus is already born & grown, yet Isis is a virgin, then Horus had a virgin birth.
>
> Egyptian Coffin Texts, written during the First Intermediate period to the Middle Kingdom period, whafter about 2000 BC say Isis is impregnated with Horus, not by sex with Osiris, but by a bolt a lightning. The translator, Raymond O. Faulkner, wrote two peer reviewed articles explaining that this was indeed a non-sexual conception.
>
> Pyramid Texts written during the Old Kingdom period present a version of Horus's conception, in which even though sex is the mechanism, it is not sex with Isis's biological body, it is sex with her Ba, so her body remains untouched.
>
> Dr. E.A. Wallis Budge, The Gods of Egypt (I, xv-xvi) states "Egyptians who embraced Christianity found that the moral system of the old cult and that of the new religion were so much alike, that they transferred their allegiance from Osiris to Jesus of Nazareth without difficulty. Moreover, Isis and the child Horus were straightway identified with Mary the Virgin and her Son, and in the apocryphal literature of the first few centuries which followed the evangelization of Egypt, several of the legends about Isis and her sorrowful wanderings were made to centre round the Mother of Christ. Certain of the attributes of the sister goddesses of Isis were also ascribed to her, and, like the goddess Neith of Sais, she was declared to possess perpetual virginity. Certain of the Egyptian Christian Fathers gave to the Virgin the title 'Theotokos,' or 'Mother of God,' forgetting, apparently, that it was an exact translation of neter mut, a very old and common title
> of Isis."
>


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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2012 12:56 pm 
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Thanks for doing that, Robert.

Of course, the evidence for Isis being a virgin mother is contained in a 75-page chapter in Christ in Egypt - hardly something you can reproduce at the Jesus Mysteries group.

What's with this silly obsession about requiring permission to post quotes and links? Do these folks not understand copyright laws and how the internet works?

In any event, don't forget this short article:

ISIS IS A VIRGIN MOTHER!!!

A simple internet search would have brought up that article. Yes, you have my permission to post a link and quote it. Also be sure to note that the Seti I image of GA's is linked here:

viewtopic.php?p=21667#p21667

You can even provide a link to the Virgin Isis-Mery chapter in my book, via Google Books - surely you don't need to ask Google for their permission?

Also, feel free to reproduce any commentary from the Booktalk.org discussion I may have provided on this subject - yes, you have my permission.

:shock:

By the way, I once tried to post to the Jesus Mysteries group - I believe it was a response to some calumny being spewed my way (what else is new). Naturally, my comment was rejected. It appears that this "permission" business is an excuse to censor people whose opinions the moderators don't like.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2012 10:55 am 
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Some further discussion from the Jesus Mysteries Group on the origins of Christmas and Egyptian sources for Christianity, collated from posts in early May.

Sid Martin asked "How does Christ in Egypt differ from Tom Harpur's The Pagan Christ?"

My response: Christ in Egypt is a detailed source book to research Egyptian influence on Christianity. The Pagan Christ is primarily a popular introduction to the thought of Alvin Boyd Kuhn. For example, it provides a brief discussion of one of the most compelling borrowings by the Gospels from Egypt, how the story of Lazarus copies the story of Osiris, and how the names of Lazarus and Osiris are linked, but is not a detailed source book for those who wish to understand these topics in depth. Murdock explains this Lazarus story in greater depth, with the index showing 15 mentions of Lazarus. These two books are basically consistent with each other. Christ in Egypt seeks to provide rigorous scholarship to show the intimate continuity between Israel and Egypt as shown in a range of mythic figures.

Jake Jones IV wrote: "Start with the Christ in Egypt: Born on December 25th. What is the earliest Christian assertion that Jesus was born on December 25th?"

My Response: Thanks Jake. The earliest known reference to Christmas is claimed to be The Chronography of 354 AD. Another claim (supported by the Pope) is that the December 25 date was determined by calculating nine months after March 25, regarded as the day of Jesus’ conception, based on a comment from Hippolytus of Rome, around year 204. See http://www.chronicon.net/chroniconfiles ... 2025th.pdf

A threshold question for understanding the Christmas typology is the form of early Christian belief, and to what extent lost views were oriented towards pagan motifs including sun worship. Information on this threshold question points to the relation between Christ and the Sun, separately from the English pun between Son and Sun, as a key part of the evolution of the Christ myth. Malachi's description of the 'sun of righteousness' presents a plausible prophetic type for Jesus as the sun. The idea of Christ and twelve disciples is shown as an allegory for the sun and the twelve months of the year in early artistic works and Gnostic theology. Sun worship was retained in Christianity with the orienting of altars to the orient.

If we establish that Christianity was originally a modified form of sun worship, building on earlier sun gods such as Ra, Horus and Apollo, we start to see why the birth of Horus at the winter solstice, as attested by Plutarch, supports the claim of close relationship between Christianity and Egyptian myth.

By the natural rhythm of the seasons, the sun is 'born' after the winter solstice each year, when days first start to lengthen. Christmas therefore takes over a celebration of the annual rebirth of the sun. There is also an apparent link between Christmas and Easter, with the sun 'dying' for several days after the winter solstice when it rises at its same southernmost point of the horizon on the shortest days of the year before starting the long march north on Christmas Day.

This Christmas nativity motif is just one of many examples of the typology linking Christ and Horus. They are both the son of a virgin (Mary/Isis), they both fought the representative of evil (Satan/Set), they both symbolise the sun, they both raised Lazarus/Osiris from the dead, and they were both known by many of the same titles.

Jake Jones IV responded: No use in discussing when you can't address or acknowlege the glaring holes in your (or DMM's)arguments. This makes it too easy for Hoffmann and Ehrmann to paint mythicists with the broad brush.

I then asked: What glaring hole precisely? Your comment on dating of Christmas seemed to me irrelevant.

No subsequent response from JJ IV. Can any readers here understand his comment? I am baffled.

Con said: When the JC myth first sprang up on or around the second century there was no reference to Jesus' birth date coinciding with the winter soltsice or the Age of Pisces. The astrological symbolism which you have painstakingly detailed in many posts was not part of the Pauline epistles, Gospels - synoptic and gnostic, or in the writings of the early Church writers - orthodox or otherwise. These Egyptian and Oriental motifs do appear to be a case of modern transference by some researchers in the study of the JM. Perhaps there are some genuine parallels but these may be nothing more than common archetypes shared across a myriad of human cultures and societies. It does need to be iterated that the Xmas and Easter calenders and iconography were adopted a lot later by the established official Church. These have just about nothing to do with the original syncretic faith which emerged in or around the Mediterranean circa 2nd Century CE.

My Response: Con, I understand why you would see it as transference, but I disagree. There is actually a lot of ancient symbolism that suggests a Gnostic cosmic vision of precession provided the scaffolding upon which Christianity was built, but this framework was seen as unacceptable by orthodoxy and was nearly obliterated. The crime of obliteration was not perfect, and there are clear forensic clues which admit of no other explanation than an accurate knowledge of precession as the structure of time. The cosmic mysteries were highly vulnerable to organized attack because of their reliance on oral transmission and secrecy. However, they inserted enough clues into the Bible to show that they had correct scientific knowledge of precession as the millennial basis of time, to the extent needed to use it as an accurate marker of the ages.

Perhaps the clearest example is Revelation 13:2 "the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority."

This line is one of the most baffling in the Bible. Yet, if we consider it against the widespread ancient view that the North Pole is the fixed point of heaven, the lode star, we find a simple natural cosmic explanation. Over historical time, the pole has actually moved from the constellation of the Dragon to the constellation of Ursa the Bear, next to the Lion. The "power and seat and authority" of the pole have precessed from the Dragon to the Bear-Lion due to the slow wobble of earth's axis. And the leopard's spots were a symbol of the stars, seen in Thoth's wife Seshat - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seshat, The Gnostic Peratae used Draco as a central theme.

Once the basics are understood, other symbolic language falls into place. For example the link between the cross of Christ, the God of Time Aion, and the snake pole of Moses can be well explained against an accurate ancient understanding of precession.

What the Draco-Ursa example shows is that the author of Revelation was aware of precession of the pole, but concealed this basic cosmic knowledge in symbolic language. My view is that this is a very widespread trope across the Bible, with various examples I have previously mentioned such as the four living creatures representing the four main constellations of the zodiac. The concealment was due to the cultural hostility towards astronomy and astrology, which were main targets of orthodox rage, with any overt Christian texts that used astrology condemned and burnt as heretical. And yet the secret essence survived, emerging again for example in the great stained glass windows of Chartres and St Denis.

My argument here is that myth originates primarily from observation of nature. This presents a coherent and logical explanation for the evolution of Christianity from an original coherent cosmic mystery to the incoherence of historical faith, with the secrecy inherent in mysteries explaining why only a degraded form of the myth survived.

As to the dating of Christmas, we see from Plutarch that Horus was born around Christmas. If Christianity emerged from the deliberate addition of Israeli motifs to the Greco-Egyptian syncretism of Serapis, aiming to present a new believable historical story with the story of Christ drawing from archetypes of Horus and Osiris, then it makes perfect sense that this Christmas motif would have existed from early days, even if it was not overtly discussed in extant documents until Hippolytus in the third century.

I disagree with your claim that Christianity only emerged in the second century. My view is that Paul probably wrote before the destruction of Jerusalem. As well, there is proto-Christian symbolism in prophets such as Daniel and Isaiah, indicating that the idea of an eternal Christ who would manifest at the turning point of time predated the common era.

As to claims of late dating of Easter and Christmas, there is abundant evidence of early celebration of these natural turning points of the seasons at the solstice and equinox, for example in Stonehenge and Egyptian temples. Christianity overlaid its myth onto existing ceremonies.

Rod Green wrote: "This is the type of discussion (from Robert's perspective at least) that Ehrman would point to as evidence of the amateur."

My Response: Yes he would, but Erhman has an agenda of defending the farcical myth of the historical Jesus, calumnating the credentials of anyone who introduces new evidence that helps to discredit the conventional view. Academic theology excludes open debate about these topics. I do have a masters honours degree in philosophy, and have studied these topics in depth for more than twenty years, so criticisms from the Ehrmans of this world are just a deflection without substance or engagement.

Rod Green: "Revelation 13:2 is clearly a direct allusion to Daniel 7 as are the beasts noted. Daniel was written long before anyone knew about precession."

My Response: You have no basis to assert the writer of Daniel knew nothing of precession. Ezekiel's reference to 'wheels within wheels' and Plato's discussion of crossing circles in The Timaeus indicate early knowledge of precession, as does the shift in alignment of Egyptian and Majorcan temples analysed in detail by writers such as Sir Norman Lockyer. Ezekiel's wheels are shown as the Chi shaped crossing point of the Milky Way and the Zodiac in medieval cosmologies. As for Daniel, the 'seventy weeks' prophecy has long been regarded as predicting the time of Christ, for example as discussed by Sir Isaac Newton. It is entirely plausible that the Chaldean astronomers of pre-Christian times looked to the shift of the equinox from Aries to Pisces as a major turning point of time, and predicted accurately when it would happen, and that this prediction found its way in concealed form into the book of Daniel as the basis of messianic expectation.

Rod Green: "The strained and inaccurate correlations noted (the North Pole was the known fixed point of the heavens???) are a conclusion looking for evidence.

My Response: Perhaps Rod, you are not familiar with the night sky, but the North Pole Star Polaris does not appear to move because everything moves around it. This is simple astronomy, and was well known in ancient times as the fixed point of the heavens when people were even more familiar with the visible stars than today. What is more complex is the fact that this unmoving point in the heavens slowly shifts on a millennial time frame, and that observation over generations can detect and measure this slow shift. The Great Pyramid of Giza has an airshaft which points straight from the so-called King's Chamber to near the North Celestial Pole. http://www.ancientegyptonline.co.uk/pyr ... hafts.html states "Stadelmann suggested that the shafts allowed the king's soul to travel to the "stars that never die" (the circumpolar stars in the northern sky) and the "land of light" (the southern sky). This argument has a certain simplicity, and seems quite reasonable."

Rod Green: "Robert has at least managed to get each of the beasts (lion, bear. Leopard, dragon) into the same couple of sentences but by means of simply changing the subject/correlation (the Lion happens to be NEXT to the Bear ((at least one of them); and the Leopard's spots, totally unrelated here, also happen to be symbols (by someone), of the stars."

My Response: Again, this correlation is simple observation. The northern winter sky is dominated by the Bears and the Lion, which have taken over Draco's former position (until about 1000 BC) as marking the pole. The leopard's spots are hardly unrelated. Their use as a symbol of the stars is well attested in Egyptian mythology of Seshat, wife of Thoth the God of astronomy. In this case, we have the symbol of the stars (the leopard) linked to the constellations which mark the unchanging point of the heavens (the bear and lion), having usurped the former well known position of the dragon. This explanation supports the simple link between heaven and the heavens as the basis of the myth.

The widespread hostility to natural cosmic explanations (which continues today) provided clear motive for the authors to conceal this message in symbols, in the expectation that more overt explanation would suffer the tender mercies of the censor.

Rod Green: "The rather mundane fact is that everything found in Revelation is sourced from Jewish Scriptures and intended to reference events in the time of, or immediately within the future horizon, of the author(s). The author(s) expresses no view beyond 100 CE plus or minus 50 years. Christianity has chosen to manipulate and propagate this dead-end prophecy for 2000 years, because accepting its failure puts the entire idea of a future eschatology into jeopardy. Reading Revelation correctly makes the idea of the return of Jesus DOA."

My Response: What your comment illustrates is an insistence that your prior assumption about eschatology is the only explanation. The facts of the text illustrate both that the writers knew more about astronomy than many modern critics imagine, and that they sought to explain things against a very long sweep of history, for example the idea in Psalms and Peter that a millennium is as a day to God. Similarly, the typology linking Christ to Horus is strong, but is rejected a priori by those who insist on a farcical supernatural explanation of the origins of the Christ myth. The syncretic context of the New Testament drew on other sources than Israel, including from Egypt and Babylon.

Rod Green: "I understand why there are no signs in the sky for the elephant, because the elephant was of course, carrying the world on its back."

My Response: Interestingly, the Indian myth of Kurma, the turtle upholding the universe, matches precisely to the position of the Large Magellanic Cloud at the south ecliptic pole. The ancients knew far more about the skies than has survived in the fragmentary textual record.

Pictures of the movement of the poles are at http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Precession_N.gif and http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/c ... sion_S.gif

Isis Anastasi wrote: "debate about Jesus and Christianity must include the works of everything available OUTSIDE the New Testament"

My Response: Yes, I agree. Christian theology has long existed in isolation from comparative religion, and has contained exclusive teachings that belittle other traditions. This makes it quite difficult for people within a Christian framework to see the dependency of their own views on connections to other traditions. The dawn of Christianity was a time of great cultural ferment and syncretism, but the emergence of orthodoxy as a guarantor of political stability led to extensive suppression of knowledge regarding the continuity between Christian doctrines and earlier mythology.

Isis Anastasi: "the fact remains Jesus's birthday is celebrated on December 25, during the Winter Solstice. No one can argue that the celebration of the Winter Solstice is pre-Christian. And most pre-Christian religions who worshipped a Sun God, celebrated his birthday on or around December 25th."

My Response: Yes, this is an important observation, although there are also other dates which celebrated the birth of solar gods. I think Con is mistaken in his view that the incorporation of solar themes only occurred late in the patristic period as a political measure. Allegories such as Jesus and the twelve as the sun and the twelve months had to come from somewhere, and they were already the subject of debate between orthodox and Gnostics well before the Constantinian Era, for example in Irenaeus of Lyon.

Judaism incorporated the zodiac on the breastplate of its high priest, showing an intense reverence for this natural observation. Fertility cults were based on celebration of the annual cycle. There is extensive evidence of early focus on the solstices and equinoxes as the turning points of the natural year of the seasons. The interpretation that makes most sense, in my opinion, is that Christianity drew on these widespread pagan traditions to formulate its syncretic notion of Jesus as a man who could pull together the worthwhile features of all existing religions.

Christmas is just after the solstice, and in ancient times was the first day when the sun could be seen to have started its annual trek north, the beginning of the solar year. Easter too, with its link to the Passover and the equinox at the old Jewish New Year, is timed for the quickening of spring, and so represents a beginning and an end, with the cross symbolising the death of the old year (winter) and the birth of the new (spring).

Con wrote: "December 25 was the Roman holiday observing the birthday of Sol Invictus - the Invincible or Unconquered Sun. Interestingly Sol wasn't officially dedicated until the late Second Century Common Era!"

My Response: That is interesting. Do you think this "official dedication" came from nowhere, and did not have a continuity with earlier practice, perhaps as one tradition among several?

Con: "There appears to be no evidence that any other deities (let alone the familiar saviour gods - Mithras, Dionysus, Adonis, Osiris etc) shared this birthday"

My Response: But as I already mentioned, Plutarch says Horus was born around the winter solstice. There is an interesting article by Gary Leupp, Professor of History at Tufts University, that says "the Romans celebrated the birth feast of Mithras on December 25, ordered to do so by Emperor Aurelian in 274 CE". http://dissidentvoice.org/Dec05/Leupp1225.htm

It seems most implausible that the Emperor would order a feast day that was not traditional even then. http://www.carnaval.com/mithras/ is a good source regarding the cosmic signification of Mithras.

Con: "Jesus' original mythographers had none of this. The cosmic significations were only established in the 3rd and 4th Centuries"

My Response: That seems unlikely. Early Christianity was primarily a secret oral mystery cult, so teachings that became enforced under Christendom would probably have had a long gestation. The orientation of altars to the east indicates an early cosmic signification, as do the timing of Christmas and Easter.

Looking at some solar references in the Bible, the prophet Hosea says "surely as the sun rises, he will appear" and "my judgments go forth like the sun." Habakkuk says "His splendor was like the sunrise; rays flashed from his hand, where his power was hidden." Malachi says "for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays." Matthew says "the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father" and "His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light." Luke says "because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven" and "There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars." Revelation says "His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance" and "A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head."

I could go on, but these texts illustrate that the cosmic allegory of Jesus as the sun was early. The continuity with symbols of new life and fertility only really makes sense when we consider Jesus Christ as an allegory for the sun.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:52 am 
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Thanks for doing that, Robert.

Don't forget that Jesus' birthday is indirectly mentioned in the Gospel of Luke, which is pointed out here John the Baptist and Jesus' Birthdays. Basically, the bible makes it very clear that John and Jesus were born 6 months apart. John's birthday is one of the earliest celebrations for Christianity known as St. John's Day, which is celebrated on June 24th, just three days after the summer solstice, which obviously puts Jesus' birthday at Christmas.

It's also significant to point out that in Paganism the solstices were originally part of their celebrations climaxing three days later with the sun's change of direction. Christianity merely severed this connection so severely that people today are utterly unaware of its original connection to the solstices. Same with Easter. Scholars refer to this three days period as a triduum. Christmas and Easter are the most popular celebrations for Christianity and both have their origin in pre-Christian Pagan religion thousands of years before Christianity or Jesus was ever created.

"The well-known solar feast, however, of Natalis Invicti, celebrated on 25 December, has a strong claim on the responsibility for our December date. For the history of the solar cult, its position in the Roman Empire, and syncretism with Mithraism"
- Catholic Enc. Christmas

"The 25 December was observed as his birthday, the natalis invicti, the rebirth of the winter-sun, unconquered by the rigours of the season."
- Catholic Enc. Mithraism

"O, how wonderfully acted Providence that on that day on which that Sun was born ... Christ should be born"
- Cyprian, Catholic Enc. Christmas

For more, see A Brief History of Jesus's Winter Solstice Birthday

Also, it's important to keep in mind that while these guys claim the Dec 25th date is late lets not forget that the importance of the cross wasn't in any art of any kind until the 5th century at the earliest. It's also significant to point out that it was Christians themselves who chose Dec 25th as the birth date for Jesus based on their own research. They could've chosen any date they wanted but, they chose an already popular and well known date originated by Paganism.

Quote:
"The cross & the crucifix are very ancient symbols found around the world LONG PRIOR to the advent of the Christian savior. In the gospel story Jesus tells his disciples to 'take up the cross' & follow him [Matthew 16:24]. Obviously, the cross already existed and was a well-known symbol, such that Jesus did not even have to explain this strange statement about an object that, we are led to believe, only gained significance AFTER Jesus died on it."

- Christ Conspiracy pg 218

I think it makes perfect sense that the focus of these two issues of the birth date and the cross would be more significant later since it would've been too blatantly obvious to all the Pagans living in the first and second century that they "borrowed" so much from them. After Constantine made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire in the 4th century and the mass destruction of the Pagan world ensued, then, it was much easier to usurp the Pagan's most sacred religious concepts and motifs more thoroughly.

Pagan Destruction Chronology (314-870 C.E)

There simply is absolutely no way to fully grasp Christianity without understanding astrotheology:

Quote:
"...I find it undeniable that many of the epic heroes and ancient patriarchs and matriarchs of the Old Testament were personified stars, planets, and constellations..."

"[Horus] is pictured as spanning the dome of heaven, his arms stretched out in a cruciform pattern."

"I find myself in full agreement with Acharya S/D.M. Murdock..."

- Dr. Robert Price, Biblical Scholar with two Ph.D's
Price's review of Christ in Egypt

The 8 points of the compass or 8 spoked sunwheel are precisely what is laid out at St. Peter's Square with an Egyptian obelisk serving as the gnomon of a sundial in the center. These 8 points are the solstices, equinoxes and cross-quarters while 12 is for the zodiac.

Quote:
"Christian structures were built upon the ruins of the Pagan temples, such as in the case of the Vatican, which was founded upon the remains of a complex dedicated to the sun god Mithra..."

- Christin Egypt, page 4-5

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2012 4:37 pm 
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Moreover, if Irenaeus is to be given any credibility, then the observance of Jesus birthday in December may very well be traced back to the mid-first century. Irenaeus says that the Valentinians believed that Jesus's baptism occurred on his 30th birthday, and that his death exactly one year later, took place "in the twelfth month".
So for them, he was born in the 12th month, yes?

Irenaues also says that the doctrines of the Valentinians originated with Simon Magus. Since Simon was allegedly a contemporary of the apostles, then in a syllogistic sort of way, Irenaeus is telling us that the belief that Jesus was born in the "twelfth month" goes back to the time of the apostles & Simon Magus.

The trouble is, besides Irenaeus's credibility, is the 12th month in what calendar? Being gentiles as well as unothrodox Christians, it would be natural to think they were using the same calendar as everyone else, the Julian Calendar, no?

I think they were, myself. But it should be noted, because no doubt antagonists will seize on it, that Irenaeus tried to refute the Valentinians' date of the 12th month by pointing out that the gospels have Jesus dying in the 1st month of the Jewish calendar, not the 12th.

For me though, that seems too much of a damn big coincidence that they used the "12th month", and that December is also a 12th month and would go on to be explicitly declared as Christ's birth month, rather than the 12th month of the Jewish Calendar.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2012 10:17 am 
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And the nativity symbolism has to factor in as well. It's running in according with the notion of the 12th month through the symbolic presentation of the story line.

It all comes together to hint at a long held belief that Jesus was born in the 12th month, about the winter solstice, and from which point his story then takes off going around the zodiac to John in Aquarius, and to gather up fishermen in Pisces, etc. (as described in Vega's video)

So the Valentinian's belief in the 12th month, the symbolism of the gospels to the winter solstice night sky, and finally a certified Christmas holiday much later behind this all.

I think it's more than obvious that there's an antiquity to be realized here.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 07, 2012 3:22 pm 
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Thanks as always for doing all that, Robert. It is so great to see someone appreciate the effort I put into Christ in Egypt and for others to be "getting it." The best way to understand the thesis and to discover the evidence is, of course, actually to read the book. By the time this person(s) is logging in and typing comments, he could have been doing a search in my book itself on Google or Amazon. So, I have to wonder what exactly is the issue here.

The Astrotheological Origins of Religion

In any event, as concerns this statement:

Quote:
....there has been some recent difficulty there with posters who are skeptical of astrotheology as such.

Without factoring the solar nature of the pre-Christian biblical god Yahweh into the picture of not only Old Testament but also New Testament theology, we are at a tremendous loss of perspective and cannot judge accurately what we are dealing with in studying these subjects. I find it perplexing that anyone could participate in a "Jesus Mysteries" group and not be interested in the mysteries part. This ignorance of the nature-worshipping origins of much religious ideation, including and especially that which can be found prominently in the Bible, is just that, and all the wheels are being spun for naught.

Professional scholars of religion are well aware of various astrological or astrotheological aspects of the Bible and ancient religion, as we have discussed elsewhere. For example, Rev. Dr. J. Glen Taylor takes the bull by the horns with his discussion in Yahweh and the Sun: Biblical and Archaeological Evidence for Sun Worship in Ancient Israel. Anyone who does not know the information in Taylor's book but who professes to be an expert on the origins of Judaism and/or its offshoot Christianity is being disingenuous and is not an expert. It is that simple.

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From there, we can proceed. Those who likewise profess to know all about Judaism and the Old Testament but who are ignorant of the writings of Josephus on this subject also must be considered disingenuous and pretentious in their posturing as authorities. See, e.g., Exodus 39:9-14:

Quote:
...they made the breastplate... And they set in it four rows of stones... And the stones were according to the names of the children of Israel, twelve...according to the twelve tribes.

As Josephus says (Antiquities, 3.8 ):

Quote:
And for the twelve stones, whether we understand by them the months or whether we understand the like number of the signs of that circle which the Greeks call the zodiac, we shall not be mistaken in their meaning.

Earlier than Josephus, Philo ("On the Life of Moses," 12) had made the same comments regarding Moses:

Quote:
Then the twelve stones on the breast, which are not like one another in colour, and which are divided into four rows of three stones in each, what else can they be emblems of, except of the circle of the zodiac?

Let us also not forget the post I made about Astrology and the PhDs, in which I provide several PhD theses and other works by professional scholars on the subject of astrology in ancient religion. Don't forget my previous post "The Eclipse of Solar Mythology" as well.

If the posters at the JM group are not interested in the astrological origins of religion, again, they are only revealing their own ignorance, as these numerous scholars most assuredly found this topic quite worthy of discussion. If the topic at this group does not reach the level of these scholars, then it is lacking, and I for one am not interested in it.

To reiterate, one of these scholar texts is Early Christianity and Ancient Astrology, summarized thus:

Quote:
Early Christianity and Ancient Astrology explores a variety of responses to astrology, the most popular form of divination among early Christians in Greco-Roman antiquity. After a brief overview of ancient astrological theory and a survey of polemical responses to it, this book documents instances in which early Christian writers and communities incorporated astrology positively into their beliefs and practices. This study is of interest to students of early Christianity and of Greco-Roman religion and to those concerned with interfaith relations or with issues of Christian unity and diversity. It is particularly recommended for use in courses on the history of Christianity and on the religions of Greco-Roman antiquity.

We can cite as another example the work of Dr. David Ulansey as concerns Mithraism and its various astrological associations. As we know, there is a massive amount of information dating well back into antiquity. Again, if the JMers aren't interested in that aspect of religion dating back millennia, I am not interested in their shallow and superficial discussions, as they clearly are not geared towards discovering the origins of Christianity. They don't sound like they know very much after all these years of discussion, which is why I haven't bothered with them.

But I do so appreciate you bringing this fascinating information to whomever may be lurking there. I would suggest strongly that you provide the links I've included here, such as the Taylor book, the info at solar mythology eclipse thread, as well as the astrology/PhD links, etc. The derogation of this subject is not only ignorant but also unseemly towards these various scholars.

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