reply to post by AfterInfinity
Originally posted by AfterInfinity
reply to post by swordwords
What led you to interpret these materials the way you did?
I first suspected the allegoric nature of the Bible while I still considered myself a Christian. I had found a parallel between Matthew’s account
of Judas’ hanging and the “hanging” of Jeremiah when he was lifted out of the cistern where he had been imprisoned (Jeremiah 38:6-13). I had
been led to this parallel by the “error” in which Matthew attributes a quote from Zechariah to Jeremiah (Matthew 27:9-10). I thought: Could this
error have been an intentional effort to allude to Jeremiah’s hanging? I also noticed that it should not have taken 30 men to pull Jeremiah out of
the cistern and therefore I suspected that the number “30” had to have some hidden significance. At this time I had no clue as to what this
parallel could mean, but I felt reasonably sure that it was no accident.
Sometime after this discovery, and after I renounced Christianity, I found another parallel between the Gospel accounts and Josephus’ Autobiography,
and then a word in this parallel led me to another parallel. I became certain that these could not be coincidental and that there was some hidden
meaning linked to these parallels. The “silent” names of Josephus’ contemporaries (Tacitus and Tranquillus) caused me to suspect something even
larger and this idea caused me to think about Plato’s Allegory of the Cave. This then drew me to take a look at Plato’s works for additional
clues as to what might be occurring. Plato’s Cratylus
, which discusses the “correctness of names” supported my suspicion that the names
Tacitus and Tranquillus were intended to communicate something about the character of their writing. I also became convinced that not only was the
Bible allegorical, but also many other works.
I then began to treat this allegory as a code to be broken. I used Plato’s principle of “correctness of names” to determine possible meanings
of names and words and then I would study multiple occurrences of these words to see if they offered any clues that supported the possible meanings
offered by correctness. As I discerned the hidden meaning of some words, I was able then to discern meanings of additional words that were related
to the ones I had already learned. (Correctness did not work for everything.) It can be a long process and in some cases I have examined hundreds of
occurrences of a particular word and been unable to gain more than a general meaning. (For example, I know that “birds” represent “cover”
but it is extremely difficult to learn what a particular kind of bird represents.)
The parallels themselves also occasionally offered clues as to the meaning of particular words, but they also helped to establish context of the
events that were being described allegorically. For example, Josephus’ claim to have received what appeared to be a mortal head wound (Wars
Book 5, Chapter 13, paragraph 3) connects him to the “Beast” in Revelation (Chapter 13:3). Without this connection, anyone attempting to
interpret Revelation must resort to guessing. Context is extremely important since literal time means nothing when allegory is involved and literal
history is also of limited value. I have been able to build a fairly complete context of early Christianity, and a limited context of the Books of
Moses, but not much beyond those. Without sufficient context, I can only understand what has occurred, but not who, when, or where.
In short, I was led to interpret things this way by the clues in encountered. I never suspected or dreamed of what I actually found.