Full version of Joseph Atwill's Documentary
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12-02-2015, 01:20 PM
RE: Full version of Joseph Atwill's Documentary
(12-02-2015 01:59 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  
(12-02-2015 12:29 AM)Minimalist Wrote:  Herod the Great is one of those figures in history (Caligula and Nero are others) about whom we have only the testimony of their enemies. Like Caligula and Nero, Herod had no problem with popular revolts. Their enemies were the upper classes who also happened to be the literate classes.

The Julio-Claudians made it a point to keep the commons happy in order to prevent riots in Rome. The Bread and Circuses mantra, if you will. Herod didn't do that exactly but one can envision the commons being exceedingly happy with his building projects which put money in their pockets. That much is speculation but what is not speculation is that these three horrible "tyrants" were popular with the lower classes but earned the enmity of the upper classes through taxation, judicial murders, confiscations, forced loans, etc. It's all well and good to trot out the Robin Hood mantra of the poor peasants being taxed to death but the peasants did not have money. You could kill them but that would not solve your money problems. It was the rich who had the money. You know what Willie Sutton said about why he robbed banks?

In Herod's case the creation of the port of Caesarea Maritima was one of the most brilliant commercial moves in history. He built a large, well-sheltered port and the revenues he gained from it helped finance his other building projects. So it is tricky to rely solely on the calumnies of Josephus because Josephus was from a priestly (i.e. noble) family which doubtlessly bitterly resented Herod's non Hasmonean lineage and may well have regarded his building projects as a way to subvert the populace from their more traditional loyalties to the nobility.

One cannot escape the ramifications of class status when discussing antiquity. Herod was tutored by Caesar and Mark Antony and when the time came, he threw in with Octavian. He was schooled by the populaires who won the Roman civil wars...not the optimates.

BTW, you have one error in your 4 BC discussion. When Quinctillius Varus brought the legions in from Syria it was to enforce Herod's will which was that his kingdom be divided among his remaining sons. Archelaus did not get Galilee. He was tetrarch of Judaea, Samaria, and Idumea. Antipas got Galilee and Perea which he ruled from 4 BC to 39 AD (when Caligula booted him out) and Phillip the territories in the Transjordan. Augustus did grant a Jewish petition to remove Archelaus from office and allow the region to become a Roman prefecture in 6 AD when P. Sulpicius Quirinius was appointed governor of Syria and Coponius was made prefect of Judaea.

Re "That much is speculation but what is not speculation is that these three horrible "tyrants" were popular with the lower classes but earned the enmity of the upper classes through taxation, judicial murders, confiscations, forced loans, etc."

That has not been the impression I've got from my reading. I have always thought that the Romans created and patronised the upper classes of the native population, as it helped them keep control of the commoners. I don't think Herod was very popular amongst the common people, even if he did give some of them a job.

Indeed, in most of the provinces that was a tried and true method. They would conquer, there would be a revolt which would be crushed, the surviving local leaders would be subverted by various means, including Roman citizenship, and the whole province would calm down. But Judaea was a different case. Periods of direct Roman rule were rare. Even when Pompey captured Jerusalem in 63 BC he left the Hasmonean ruler, Hyrcanus II, in charge as high priest although eventually Herod's father, Antipater, gained Roman favor as an able administrator.

While the Romans were busy killing each other in the Civil Wars the Parthians were enticed to invade the Levant by the Brutus/Cassius faction and they placed Antigonus on the Judaean throne. After Phillipi the winners set about putting things right and in 37 Herod, with Roman support, took Jerusalem, killed Antigonus and got himself named King by the Roman senate. He ruled until his death in 4 BC in an arrangement which both sides seemed to find satisfactory.
As noted, on his death a revolt broke out as the power structure tried to prevent his sons from taking over. Varus crushed the revolt and placed the sons on their own thrones.

In 6 AD, again according to Josephus, the Sanheddrin petitioned Augustus to removed Archelaus and become a prefecture under the aegis of the Legate of Syria. This was done. Antipas and Phillip retained their kingdoms. Direct Roman rule lasted until 41 when Herod Agrippa had Judaea added to his previously gained realms of his kinsmen, Antipas and Phillip. He died in 44.

Again, direct Roman rule resumed from 44. In 48, they began giving territories to Herod Agrippa II and gradually he had the whole thing that his father held. He remained king of the northern reaches throughout the Great Revolt and resumed his kingship after 70. He died childless c 100 AD and all of a sudden the Romans were out of Herods.

Why they deviated from their standard model when it came to Judaea is something I cannot tell you. It does not seem to have been particularly effective yet they persisted. Stubborn, I suppose.


What would you say the reason for the skirmishes – wars of 4 BC, 6 CE, 66 to 73 CE and 132-6 CE were? These were fights against Romans. Are you suggesting that it was the upper classes who fought against the Romans?

I think in almost all revolutions the leadership comes from the upper classes. Life isn't like Hollywood where peasants armed with sticks easily dismount and kill armed knights. That's bullshit. The nobles call out their retainers to fill in the ranks but the commons lack the organization. Vercingetorix was a Gallic chieftain. Boudicca was an Iceni Queen. Vindex was a romanized member of the Gallic nobility. Arminius and Julius Civilis were romanized members of the Germanic nobility. A pattern develops here.

I've already discussed 4 BC and in spite of Josephus the riots of 6 CE were suppressed by local forces which suggests they were not terribly serious. In 66, after a long series of provocations by Roman procurators, the last being Florus robbing the temple treasury, the thing finally blew up. In 132 Hadrian, after a tour of the region, decided to level the ruins of Jerusalem and build a proper new city. He also banned circumcision which the Greeks and Romans considered barbaric. The shit hit the fan. Again, not wisely given the disparity of power but one can certainly understand the provocation. BTW, letters written in bar Kohkba's name show that he was excessively concerned with jewish ritual and that suggests that he was from a priestly family himself.


Don't forget the Sadducees were from the powerful, wealthy families, and they had been appointed by Rome.

The Romans appointed the high priest during the period of the prefecture. That was another thing they handed over to the king as soon as they got one installed. The nobility was the nobility and anyone that the Romans raised up would have been suspect.

Thanks for pointing out the error about Archelaus. Bit of a shame, for me...one week late. The final version of the goddamn book has already gone to the printers.

Any chance of emailing them a correction in case they haven't started yet?

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12-02-2015, 01:23 PM
RE: Full version of Joseph Atwill's Documentary
(12-02-2015 02:04 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  
(12-02-2015 12:43 AM)Minimalist Wrote:  As late as 110-112 AD when Pliny the Younger reports running into a group of "christians" in Bithynia-Pontus the group he describes is nothing like what xtians later became and he, like Suetonius and Tacitus (if the passage is not a forgery) heard of Christos (or Chrestos) but they never heard of any fucking jesus. When Lucian of Samosata wrote the The Death of Peregrinus c 160 he had the gist of the story, saying "they still worship, the man who was crucified in Palestine because he introduced this new cult into the world" but he does not mention "jesus," either. No. It is not until c 185 that we find the name of jesus written by Celsus roughly the same time as Irenaeus was writing his heavenly horseshit.
This cannot be an accident. "Jesus" seems to be a mid 2d century addition to the tale. A useful marketing technique to help spread the tale among the more gullible elements of society. But I need not point out that by 185, the Flavians had long since departed the stage of history.

As for Paul.... I'm waiting for actual evidence - not circular "it says so in Acts - that those tales of his set in the first century are any more real than the gospel tales of jesus set in the first century.

To quote George Carlin: It's all bullshit and its bad for you.

Re "It is not until c 185 that we find the name of jesus written by Celsus roughly the same time as Irenaeus was writing his heavenly horseshit."

I would agree with that. I found it impossible to find good evidence of Jesus prior to this time. A Christ, yes, but Jesus, no. I wasn't willing to put that in my book though, because it flies in the face of what 99% of scholars say. Nearly everyone has the gospels created between 70 and 110 CE.

See....I get suspicious of stuff like that. I keep asking what is the evidence for that opinion and the only answer that ever comes back is "well, the gospels say...." I know what the fucking gospels say. They are not credible.

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12-02-2015, 01:27 PM
RE: Full version of Joseph Atwill's Documentary
(12-02-2015 02:07 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  
(12-02-2015 12:43 AM)Minimalist Wrote:  As late as 110-112 AD when Pliny the Younger reports running into a group of "christians" in Bithynia-Pontus the group he describes is nothing like what xtians later became and he, like Suetonius and Tacitus (if the passage is not a forgery) heard of Christos (or Chrestos) but they never heard of any fucking jesus. When Lucian of Samosata wrote the The Death of Peregrinus c 160 he had the gist of the story, saying "they still worship, the man who was crucified in Palestine because he introduced this new cult into the world" but he does not mention "jesus," either. No. It is not until c 185 that we find the name of jesus written by Celsus roughly the same time as Irenaeus was writing his heavenly horseshit.
This cannot be an accident. "Jesus" seems to be a mid 2d century addition to the tale. A useful marketing technique to help spread the tale among the more gullible elements of society. But I need not point out that by 185, the Flavians had long since departed the stage of history.

As for Paul.... I'm waiting for actual evidence - not circular "it says so in Acts - that those tales of his set in the first century are any more real than the gospel tales of jesus set in the first century.

To quote George Carlin: It's all bullshit and its bad for you.

Re "As for Paul.... I'm waiting for actual evidence - not circular "it says so in Acts - that those tales of his set in the first century are any more real than the gospel tales of jesus set in the first century."

There is absolutely no evidence that anything Paul wrote about Christ or theology has any evidence in fact, so I'm with you on this too.

Paul emerges in the aftermath of Marcion's "heresy." But as Justin Martyr's apologia shows, not immediately after. Marcion was the first to begin the practice of a xtian canon. Perhaps later xtian writers had to polish up whatever Marcion claimed that "paul" said so it fit with what they were trying to concoct and it took them a little while to do so? In any case, xtianity seems back-dated to the first century and the only way the arguments can stand up to scrutiny is if you take the objectors and burn them at the stake.

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12-02-2015, 02:53 PM (This post was last modified: 12-02-2015 03:03 PM by Mark Fulton.)
RE: Full version of Joseph Atwill's Documentary
(12-02-2015 01:27 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  
(12-02-2015 02:07 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  Re "As for Paul.... I'm waiting for actual evidence - not circular "it says so in Acts - that those tales of his set in the first century are any more real than the gospel tales of jesus set in the first century."

There is absolutely no evidence that anything Paul wrote about Christ or theology has any evidence in fact, so I'm with you on this too.

Paul emerges in the aftermath of Marcion's "heresy." But as Justin Martyr's apologia shows, not immediately after. Marcion was the first to begin the practice of a xtian canon. Perhaps later xtian writers had to polish up whatever Marcion claimed that "paul" said so it fit with what they were trying to concoct and it took them a little while to do so? In any case, xtianity seems back-dated to the first century and the only way the arguments can stand up to scrutiny is if you take the objectors and burn them at the stake.

This is how I introduce my chapter on first century Christianity. It is difficult to write about something that may not have existed!

Somewhere in the Roman Empire, most likely in Rome, sometime between the years 40 CE and 50 CE, one of the most important ideas in mankind’s history was born. A person or group of people familiar with Jewish scripture and traditions put forward a radical idea that was promoted as the truth - that a divine person, the son of God, the Christ, had descended from heaven, lived on earth, and then, to appease his father, sacrificed himself in order to save people from their sins. This Christ was an intermediary between God and humanity, a concept that was a contemporary idea in many non-Jewish cults. This Christ was also made out to be the long awaited Jewish messiah. It can be argued that the Roman government’s propaganda department implemented this plan in the hope that a large number of people, including Hellenized Jews who might harbor disruptive messianic ambitions, would give up their dreams about rallying under the leadership of a political messiah.

Prior to the Flavians, (69-96 CE) this Christ was not associated with Jesus, because the Gospels had yet to be written.

The most crucial contributor to the development of the pre war (66-70 CE) Christ theology was, as best we know, Paul of Tarsus. Whether or not Paul invented these ideas alone, or just elaborated on them is debatable, as Paul may have only been one member of a team of government propagandists, and it is just a quirk of history that his letters have survived. Whether or not this was so, historians now accredit Paul as the key originator of Christian theology.

Through Paul’s letters, which were widely distributed only in the early second century, Paul directly influenced the theology contained in all four canonical Gospels (which were still evolving during that time.)

Paul appears to have been the real founder of Christianity, and his account of the Christ was used to entice a mainly Gentile market. The great irony here is that Yeshua, the man who would later be called the Christ, was fundamentally Jewish, anti Roman, and implacably opposed to pagan mythology such as that found in Christian theology.

For any new group to legitimately be called “Christian,” that group would have to believe in the divinity of a Christ, a concept proposed by Paul. So the very first Christians were not Yeshua’s disciples. They were small groups of mainly Gentiles spread throughout the Empire in Rome, Syria, Asia Minor, and Greece, as witnessed by the destinations of Paul’s letters.

As mentioned, the Greek/Roman world at the time was awash with multiple gods, cults and philosophies, yet it was obvious to Gentiles that Judaism was different. It is likely that some Greeks and Romans were intrigued by Judaism’s long-held standards and traditions. Jewish beliefs had been ardently adhered to for well over five hundred years. The Jews lived and breathed their religion, and some Gentiles found their intellectual integrity and moral austerity appealing. The Jewish God had a patriarchal interest in human welfare, something that many other gods did not. The idea of a heavenly paradise, as taught by some Pharisees, was attractive. The temple in Jerusalem was magnificent and mysterious, and to add to the intrigue, Gentiles were not allowed admission. The Jewish social security system was very effective. There were well-established, prominent synagogues in most larger cities. So despite the Jews’ difficult customs, there was definitely something impressive about them. Some Gentiles, unaware of the political motivations behind proto-Christianity, wanted to tap into their traditions, to have a little piece of them for themselves. Any new religious movement associated with Judaism gained some legitimacy by virtue of the association.

There were also many Jews who wanted to attract Gentiles into Judaism. These Jews had a grand vision of a united world all worshipping the one God, which was, of course, Yahweh. Paul was one, however he was a breed apart from other Jewish proselytizers because he unashamedly reconfigured Jewish beliefs.

First-century “Christianity” is a difficult topic, because apart from what can be inferred from Paul’s letters, not much is known about it, probably because it was barely impactful at a political or social level. There was no such thing as a Christian church or building in the first century. There were some proto Christian groups, some of which were still associated with Jewish synagogues. Their ideas about Christ and Jesus would have been inconsistent with one another.

The early Christians had a lot of competition. There was the official state religion of the Roman Empire that linked divinity to the emperor, and its observance was compulsory, unless one happened to be Jewish. (The government knew that Jews were fanatically monotheistic, and found it easiest to not upset them.) All Gentile citizens observed the state religion, although more in letter than in spirit. Throughout the empire, everyone was quite free to have a second religion, and there was a lot of choice for those so inclined. There were cults for all ethnicities, cultures, and tastes, mainly because there were so many different ethnic groups that had been absorbed into the Empire. Mithraism was one, and it was the dominant religion in Rome during the first three centuries CE.

Many Jews of the Diaspora flourished under the stability of Roman rule and managed to retain their autonomy. They commonly formed wealthy communities that could be seen to be different because of their strict adherence to their traditions. These were the Jews whose beliefs appealed to some Gentiles. Some gatherings of Gentiles who would eventually coalesce to become “Christian” originally embraced some of the ideas, values, and traditions of Judaism, although there were frequently frictions between Jews and Gentiles because of the differences.

Most historians believe the Gospels were first written between 70 and 110 CE, which may well be true, yet there is no evidence that the Gospels existed in their current form this early. There are many writings from this time that resemble parts of the now canonical Gospels, but the authors never say they are quoting from Matthew, Mark, Luke or John. These four names only appear circa 180 CE.

It is enlightening to note that outside the Gospels, no first century Biblical author (such as Peter, John, James or Jude) quoted Jesus’ words in his writings (other than a brief quote in Paul where Paul describes the Last Supper, which one has to suspect is an interpolation.) They also say nothing, or next to nothing, about a “once-human” Jesus. If they do mention Jesus, he was a wholly spiritual Christ, as per Paul: a mythical creation, a ghost, not a “once human” person. The Jesus the modern world knows so well, the character the Gospels created, was obviously not widely known in the first century.
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12-02-2015, 03:01 PM (This post was last modified: 12-02-2015 03:04 PM by Mark Fulton.)
RE: Full version of Joseph Atwill's Documentary
(12-02-2015 01:27 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  
(12-02-2015 02:07 AM)Mark Fulton Wrote:  Re "As for Paul.... I'm waiting for actual evidence - not circular "it says so in Acts - that those tales of his set in the first century are any more real than the gospel tales of jesus set in the first century."

There is absolutely no evidence that anything Paul wrote about Christ or theology has any evidence in fact, so I'm with you on this too.

Paul emerges in the aftermath of Marcion's "heresy." But as Justin Martyr's apologia shows, not immediately after. Marcion was the first to begin the practice of a xtian canon. Perhaps later xtian writers had to polish up whatever Marcion claimed that "paul" said so it fit with what they were trying to concoct and it took them a little while to do so? In any case, xtianity seems back-dated to the first century and the only way the arguments can stand up to scrutiny is if you take the objectors and burn them at the stake.

Re "Paul emerges in the aftermath of Marcion's "heresy.""

Agreed. Marcion is interesting. People may be interested in a little spiel about him....

Marcion (110–160 CE) was a key figure in Christianity’s history. He may have been the son of a bishop, and hailed from Pontus, a region on the southern coast of the Black Sea in modern Turkey. He was a ship owner and financially well off. He travelled to Rome about 142–143 CE, and soon attracted a large following, as his wealth gave him influence and position.

Some sources claim that Marcion was the first person to promote the Pauline Epistles, as prior to his emergence in Rome, we do not directly hear of Paul. No one knows how Marcion came across Paul’s letters, yet it is possible that without Marcion, they might never have been published. Some commentators have hypothesized that Paul was, in fact, Marcion himself. I think that highly unlikely, as it would take a literary genius to invent all the traits of Paul’s character: his paranoia, his jealousies, his anxieties and his narcissism.

Marcion’s Pauline Epistles were Romans, Galatians, 1 Corinthians, 2 Corinthians, Laodiceans (Ephesians), Philippians, Colossians, 1 Thessalonians, 2 Thessalonians and Philemon.

The hero of Marcion’s canon was Isu Chrestos - not Jesus or Yeshua. This is one of the reasons why, when Paul mentions ‘Jesus,’ ‘Lord Jesus’ or ‘Jesus Christ’, such references are probably interpolations, although this is impossible to prove or disprove.

Marcion was a Docetist; someone who believed Christ was a spirit, an entity who sprung full-grown from the mind of God. Marcion’s (and Paul’s) Christ rescued people from the unattractive God of the Old Testament and the obligations of the Torah. Isu Chrestos was not the Messiah of Israel, the hero of Jewish expectations, but the savior of mankind.

Marcion thought that only Paul had understood the message of salvation facilitated by belief in Christ, which was precisely what the narcissistic Paul claimed.

Marcion was an anti-Semite, and believed that people had inserted the Judaic elements of Paul’s writings after Paul’s death. Marcion ignored the Old Testament and any other references to Judaism. His followers were the first Christians to completely break away from Judaism. He regarded Yahweh as a primitive god: jealous, envious, vindictive, angry, cruel, intrusive, and judgmental. Marcion did not deny Yahweh’s existence, and even acknowledged that Yahweh was the creator of the universe, but Marcion claimed that an entirely different, previously unknown, god had sent Isu Chrestos. This new god was one of love and benevolence, and had sent Isu Chrestos to replace Judaism’s legalism with mercy and tolerance.

Marcion’s Gospel is very similar to the canonical Luke, although about one third shorter. Marcion called it the Euangelion—the “Good News,” and it was not attributed to a particular author. The first three chapters of today’s Luke were not in it, so it lacked any genealogy, family, or birth story for Isu Chrestos. It is commonly stated that Marcion shortened the original Luke; however, given that Marcion’s version probably appeared long before today’s “Luke,” it is more likely that Marcion’s version was closer to the original.

Marcion was the first commentator, in 140 CE, to propose the existence of a new canon, and therefore that a totally new religion, separate from Judaism, had come into being. His canon consisted only of the Euangelion and Paul’s ten letters. Marcion was, therefore, in one sense, the founder of New Testament Christianity.

Marcion’s complete break with the Jewish epic was a direct challenge to emerging Catholic Christian orthodoxy. He was excommunicated from the Catholic Church around 144 CE, and labeled as a heretic. Polycarp, who apparently could not cope with competition, called him
“ . . . the first born of Satan,” and other church fathers denounced Marcion too. That did not stop Marcion. He returned to Asia Minor and continued to spread his ideas. Marcion’s church expanded throughout much of the known world within his lifetime and remained very influential throughout the second century, when it was more successful than Catholicism. It continued to expand for more than a century, persevering alongside Catholic Christianity, and was its equal well into the fourth century, at which time the Catholics gained political power and forced the rejection and disbanding of most Marcionite churches.

One of the oldest Christian churches ever found is Marcionite, dates from 318 CE, and is located in Syria. The inscription on a wall is dedicated to
“The Lord and Savior Isu Chrestos.”

In its opposition to Marcion, the Roman Catholic Church would identify itself as the heir to Jewish tradition, and even claimed itself to be the new “true Israel.” So the fact that Marcion was opposed to Judaism meant he had enormous influence on the evolution of Catholic Christianity.

Tertullian, (160 – 220 CE) an influential theologian and a member of the Catholic Church, was highly critical of Marcion, and wrote five books criticizing him. Considering how things turned out, it is eye-opening that he denigrated Marcion’s guru Paul as not being Jesus’ true apostle. Tertullian wrote this about Paul:

“I require to know of Marcion the origin of his apostles…since a man is affirmed to me to be an apostle whom I do not find mentioned in the Gospel in the catalogue of the apostles. Indeed, when I hear that this man was chosen by the Lord after He had attained His rest in heaven, I feel that a kind of improvidence is imputable to Christ, for not knowing before that this man was necessary to Him; and because He thought that he must be added to the apostolic body in the way of a fortuitous encounter rather than a deliberate selection; by necessity (so to speak), and not voluntary choice, although the members of the apostolate had been duly ordained, and were now dismissed to their several missions. Wherefore, O shipmaster of Pontus, if you have never taken on board your small craft any contraband goods or smuggler’s cargo, if you have never thrown overboard or tampered with a freight, you are still more careful and conscientious, I doubt not, in divine things; and so I should be glad if you would inform us under what bill of lading you admitted the Apostle Paul on board, who ticketed him, what owner forwarded him, who handed him to you, that so you may land him without any misgiving, lest he should turn out to belong to him, who can substantiate his claim to him by producing all his apostolic writings. He professes himself to be ‘an apostle,’ to use his own words, ‘not of men, nor by man, but by Jesus Christ.’ Of course, any one may make a profession concerning himself; but his profession is only rendered valid by the authority of a second person. One man signs, another countersigns; one man appends his seal, another registers in the public records. No one is at once a proposer and a seconder to himself. Besides, you have read, no doubt, that ‘many shall come, saying, I am Christ.’ Now if anyone can pretend that he is Christ, how much more might a man profess to be an apostle of Christ! But still, for my own part, I appear in the character of a disciple and an inquirer; that so I may even thus both refute your belief, who have nothing to support it, and confound your shamelessness, who make claims without possessing the means of establishing them.” (Against Marcion, Book V, Chapter 1, translated by the Rev. S. Thelwall.)

How interesting! Tertullian, one of the founding fathers of Catholic Christianity, quite rightly questioned Paul’s legitimacy. Tertullian’s comments are just as pertinent today as they were nearly 2000 years ago. Tertullian was stating the obvious; Paul was only a self-appointed apostle and had no valid authority, because he never met Jesus. Paul’s status in Christian Churches has obviously grown since the time Tertullian wrote this.

The Roman Church eventually pinched many of Marcion’s patrons, and Paul’s teachings became the essence of Catholic Christianity. Hence Marcion’s ghost is very much alive in Christian churches today. Marcion’s anti-Jewish, anti-Old Testament, pro-Paul heresy lives on, but it was dogma that would have dismayed Jesus.
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12-02-2015, 04:38 PM
RE: Full version of Joseph Atwill's Documentary
Quote:This is how I introduce my chapter on first century Christianity. It is difficult to write about something that may not have existed!

Oh, I don't know. Sci-Fi writers do it all the time.


Here are the introductory paragraphs to Earl Doherty's The Jesus Puzzle.

Once upon a time, someone wrote a story about a man who was God.

We don't know who that someone was or where he wrote his story. We are not even sure when he wrote it but we do know that several decades had passed since the supposed events he told of. Later generations gave this storyteller the name of "Mark," but if that was his real name, it was only by coincidence.

Other writers followed after, and they enlarged on the first man's tale. They borrowed much of what he had written, reworked it in their own particular ways and put in some additional material. By the time another half century had passed almost everyone who followed the religion of these storytellers accepted their work as an account of actual historical events and a real historical man. And so did the people who came afterwards, for close to two thousand years.


Now, I post that mainly for the Ockam's Razor effect. Doherty's version does not require a vast government conspiracy for which there is no evidence. Instead it relies on the well-established traits of human stupidity and gullibility. As Julius Caesar once commented: Men willingly believe what they wish. That explains much of religion all by itself.

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12-02-2015, 05:00 PM
RE: Full version of Joseph Atwill's Documentary
Quote:Marcion’s Pauline Epistles were Romans, Galatians, 1 Corinthians, 2 Corinthians, Laodiceans (Ephesians), Philippians, Colossians, 1 Thessalonians, 2 Thessalonians and Philemon.

Yes...but all we know is what they say "now." We don't know what they might have said before the proto-orthodox scrubbed them.


You know, as long as we're throwing out random thoughts, let me let loose with one of my flights of fancy.

Ehrman maintains that when studying ancient manuscripts that the oldest manuscript we have is closest to the original text because of the tendency of scribes to screw up. He maintains that we do not have the originals so the earliest copies are the best we can do.

What if he is wrong? Maybe what we have are fragments of the originals? Carrier points out that xtianity was a mystery cult if you look at the various gnostic texts. What changed that and caused them to start writing stuff down? My answer is Marcion. Marcion established the idea of a canon, which was not an original idea. The Egyptians had holy writings, so did the Jews by then. But establishing a written scripture was a means of bringing in the elites who were the only parts of society which could read that stuff.

Marcion has always been the key for me. Before him, xtianity is a pile of wishful thinking. After him, we have written and datable records.

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12-02-2015, 05:55 PM
RE: Full version of Joseph Atwill's Documentary
One more point about Marcion, Mark. Timing.

Marcion's highly anti-jewish religion emerges c 140 AD or within 5 years of the end of the bar Kokhba revolt...and many jews were calling bar Kokhba "the messiah" for good measure.

After 3 revolts within 70 years one can well imagine that the Greco-Roman citizens of the empire had had it with the jews who were in first place on every one's shit list.
What better time to differentiate oneself from the despised jews than right after the end of the last revolt?

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12-02-2015, 09:06 PM
RE: Full version of Joseph Atwill's Documentary
Great reading. I feel dumb.
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12-02-2015, 09:26 PM
RE: Full version of Joseph Atwill's Documentary
Did you miss the part where I mentioned studying this stuff for 40 years? I bet Mark has invested quite a lot of time, too.

Tongue

Atheism is NOT a Religion. It's A Personal Relationship With Reality!
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