Was Mithra born of a rock or born of a “Virgin” Birth?
That seems to be the question holding up most Christians on this site.
As concerns the debate regarding the Perso-Roman god Mithra’s “virgin birth,” not a few scholars and writers of Persian/Iranian extract have
discussed the Persian goddess of love Anahita as Mithra’s virgin mother. Presumably, these individuals know more about their ancient traditions than
do modern Christian apologists, who emphasize Mithra’s “rock birth”, which was a metaphoric description, and deny the virgin-mother motif.
For example, Dr. Badi Badiozamani says that a “person” named “Mehr” or Mithra was “born of a virgin named Nahid Anahita (“immaculate”)
and that “the worship of Mithra and Anahita, the virgin mother of Mithra, was well-known in the Achaemenian period [558-330 BCE]
Mithra and the Twelve —“In Mithraism, as in popular Mazdaism, Anahid, the mother of Mithra, is a virgin.”
Mithra surrounded by the 12
“companions” is a motif found on many Mithraic remains and representing the 12 signs of the zodiac, which are sometimes depicted as humans. The
comparison of this common motif with Jesus and the 12 has been made on many occasions, including in an extensive study entitled, “Mithras and
Christ: some iconographical similarities,” by Professor A. Deman in Mithraic Studies. Many of these Mithraic parallels were remarked upon by the
Church fathers, who were flummoxed by them and who blamed them on the prescient devil.
But that’s not all Christianity has in common with Mithra. Let’s make a list:
-Mithra is the beginning of Sunday (Sun-day) worship.
-Mithra is the reason for the Solstice Dec. 25th celebration.
-Three “wise men” were present at his birth, bearing gifts.
-Mithra was often depicted carrying a lamb on his shoulders.
-Mithra had an entourage of “twelve companions”, and
they shared a last meal together.
-Mithra was considered the “savior of man”.
-Mithra died via crucifixion, and was laid to rest in a stone tomb.
-Mithra was resurrected after 3 days, during the spring equinox.
-Mithra-Vohu Mana-Rashnu (aka: the trinity)
All of these are rather interesting comparisons. Amazing actually…. Until you consider the source.
Paul was supposedly born and raised in the city of Tarsus, a region in SE Asia-Minor (now called Turkey) where Mithras was well known. Biblical
scholars are now saying that Paul, the alleged author of 13 out of the 27 (maybe more) books of the New Testament, may have been influenced in his
writings by this strong religion of Mithraism. We can see a profound kinship between Mithraism and Christianity.
What else did Christianity borrow?
-The Cross (almost every pre-Christian religion)
-Communion (pre-Christian Roman/Greeks)
-Christmas traditions (Siberian Shamans)
-Easter (Ēostre or Ôstarâ, which explains dyed eggs and bunnies
something Christians haven't been able to do)
I'm sure many more things can be attributed to this list by other theologians here on ATS, but in the end it doesn't matter. If you believe in
Christianity, if it fills some hole you have in your life, if it's the reason you were able to become sober, or it's become the promise that there is
something more once the life has left your body, then by all means do what you will. I don't know any non-Christians that will hate you for finding
solace in your religion. We only ask that you not try to demonize those who know the history of religions, and wish that you accept and respect that
a world existed before the 4th BC (+/-), and that the previous world's history may have had something to contribute to your own faith.
edit on 2-12-2011 by FugitiveSoul because: (no reason given)