posted on Nov, 24 2009 @ 12:40 PM
You (and others on this thread) will just have to excuse some of the apparent diversions from the main topic thread here, since it comes with (shall
we say) a lot of 'baggage'...
I think the major issue with modern-day (especially 'fundamentalist' American) 'Christians' who only can read the 'bible' in English and often
prefer to read the King James Version / KJV of their scriptures in a type of English no longer spoken or fully understood today) is that they have
absolutley NO historical root understanding of the times when these works were first written or even 'basic background knowledge' of the terms and
ideas contained and referred-to in the very texts they purport to believe 'every word' --
In other words, these persons (some are on this thread right now) fail to realise that they are reading very badly translated (and often fragmentary)
texts originally cast in a foreign (and ancient, no longer spoken) tongue which was ITSELF (in the case of the New Testament) translated out of
ANOTHER ancient tongue no longer spoken today, referring to images and a worldview which is pre-scientific and no longer in touch with what we call
the 21st century (i.e. using an excorcist to drive out 'fever daemons' as a healing methodology (i.e. to drive away the cause of the sickness, i.e.
evil or sin) is not necessarily the way we approach a person with a temperature today, &tc.
So the whole issue of Christians pretending to understand their belief system without delving very very very very deeply into 1st century Galilean
Aramaic, 1st Century Koine Greek, Paleo Hebrew and pre-Mishnaic Aramaic Targum literature (upon which the New Testament Gospel material was built) is
basically building a castle on quicksand...
Having said that, I can readilly see your point about 'sticking to the topic' of this thread which as you say has to do more with the pagan roots of
the celebration of the 'Mass of Christ' (from the Latin word 'paganus' meaning 'village', i.e. referring to the non-converted, older
pre-Christian religious views) -- my own input is to 'round out' whenever I can, the story with FACTS and try and enlighten here and there some of
the persons on this thread whose own comments are sometimes shockingly mis-informed and jejune in even the very basic understanding of the 1st century
world view which formed later 'Pauline Christian' dogma...
Unfortuntately for persons who like 'short answers,' the whole subject of discussing even basic religious Weltanschauungen ('world views') is that
they come jam-packed with pre-conceptions and historical underpinnings which branch out into several fields all at once, including linguistics,
archaeology, economics, ancient history, philosophy and magick, to name a few.
For example, the 'pagan' (i.e. pre-Christian) idea of a 'virgin birth' in the 2 gospel birth narratives (which do NOT match each other very
closely) of course has parallels with the birth of Hercules from a virgin, or the birth of Socrates froma virgin, or the birth of Julius Caesar from a
virgin (when he was declared a 'god' by the Senate in the 30s BCE, they had to make his birth virginal, so they could burn incense to him as a god
in his own temple), ditto for Augustus and many of the later emperors who were worshipped in their own temples as Divine Sons of the Gods, or the
virgin birth of Dionysius-Bacchus, or the birth of the sun god Mithras (Dec 25) from 'virgin rock' &tc are all natural pagan underpinnings, but it
is interesting how the Greek Speaking Gospel Writers (whoever they were) STILL felt the need to use the Old Testament midrashically to make their
Messiah's 'virgin birth story' stick i.e. they 'dressed up in haggadic midrashic fashion' Isaiah 7:11 to make 'almah' (Heb. 'young woman')
which is NOT Heb. Bethulah ('virgin, never touched') into the Greek 'parthenos' (Gk: 'virgin') just so they could LATCH on to the idea of a
miraculous birth and give it 'credence' for Greek Speaking Jewish Messianists in the Diaspora after the 1st Failed Jewish Revolt against Rome (cf:
Josephus 'whose cult-followiing were forever feverishly looking for miracles, all the time, everywhere...').
The date of Christmas (The Mass of Christ) as it is celebrated by modern Christians echoes the solar deities all born on December 25th each year when
the shadows started to get longer on the sun dials-- that much is clear and I don't think there is anyone left on this thread (at least!) who
actually believes that R. Yehoshua bar Yosef ('Jeezuz') was physically born on December 25th using today's modern Gregorian calendar, but still
there are alot of speculative discussions about when he would have been born (or when the Messiah was expected to be born, e.g. in September which is
a high holy month for the Jews including feasts of Trumpets, New Year-Rosh HaShannah, Yom Kippur as well as the Feast of Tabernacles -Sukkoth)
moreover 'in the Sign of the Virgin' (i.e. Virgo) which may well be another link for midrashic-haggadic (legendary) use of texts like Isaiah 7:14
which some Messianis communities considered to be 'referring to the Messiah' (or Gk: "christos").
This whole concept of Malachi chapter 4 as thought by Apocalyptic communities in the 1st/2nd century AD referring to the Messiah in the Last days has
a lot of terms that are open to'midrashic treatment' (i.e. search out, squeeze out the meaning) e.g. the 'Sun' (key word) of 'Righteousness'
(key word) rising (key word) with Healing (key word) in his wings' - and we see this midrashic tendenz all through the gospel narratives.
Anyone reading the gospel birth stories should know: the two stories in 'Matthew' and 'Luke' don't match each other; and that the two stories
make HEAVY use of Jewish Midrashic Haggadic Legendary methodology from old testament texts - sometimes making use of the same 'source' text from
which to draw their legendary expansions which many Christians today read as 'pure facts to be read soberly in the cold light of day...'
The kind of language used in the Birth Narratives is the same kind of language used in the Mystery Religions, of which 'the Mysteries of Christ'
were just one of several dozen floating around in the 1st and 2nd centuries AD, and all of whom had some kind of resurrection saviour god at their