If Jesus Never Existed...
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10-05-2017, 10:52 PM
RE: If Jesus Never Existed...
(09-05-2017 11:16 PM)Aractus Wrote:  Why is it absurd?
I already explained why in the very post you are quoting, and you seem to be actively ignoring it. Here is a quick recap for ya mate:
[Image: giphy.gif]

(09-05-2017 11:16 PM)Aractus Wrote:  There are way more scholars that agree with Holocaust denial than with Mythicism.
Mate, I don't give a single fuck about the number of scholars that say something cause I know that both an argument from authority and an argumentum ad populum are both fallacious.

I care about EVIDENCE and the EVIDENCE for a historical Jesus is based on entirely on hearsay and assertions while the Holocaust has demonstrable and falsifiable evidence.

(09-05-2017 11:16 PM)Aractus Wrote:  I'm not trying to compare the quality of primary evidence...
No, you are actually trying to actively avoid discussions of evidence because every time I bring it up you ignore it and just vomit up a "look at the number of people that agree with me, ain't it impressive?"

(09-05-2017 11:16 PM)Aractus Wrote:  If you want Mythicism taken seriously then you need to at least start with a well supported scholarly base around it...
An argument or a hypothesis stands or falls based on the evidence and the evidence alone, the number of people who agree with it is bloody irrelevant.

(09-05-2017 11:16 PM)Aractus Wrote:  Then you could have a legitimate discussion.
That's not up to you kiddo. An argument stands or falls based on the evidence not the number of people who agree with it. The only person here who can't seem to engage in legitimate discussion is YOU, and you demonstrate that every time you bloody refuse to honestly answer questions and criticisms.

(09-05-2017 11:16 PM)Aractus Wrote:  Well for one thing, most historians believe that Moses is not a historical figure, and that there was no Exodus.
Like right here for example. I didn't ask you what most historians believe I asked you what demonstrable, testable, and falsifiable evidence exists for Jesus that doesn't exist for Moses.

You answer reeked of blatent evasive dishonesty. You won't get many of those with me.

(09-05-2017 11:16 PM)Aractus Wrote:  why should I take Mythicists seriously when:
I'm not saying you should or should not take them seriously, I'm trying to point out the GLARING flaws in your reasoning and trying to get you to patch them up. NOW I also have to waste time trying to figure out if you're being intentionally dishonest.

(09-05-2017 11:16 PM)Aractus Wrote:  They don't even have the scholarly support that Holocaust deniers have

Fucking hell. The number of people that believe something to be true is not relevant to the question of if it's true or not. Those claiming Jesus to be a historical fact have not met their burden of proof because all hey can produce is hearsay from anonymous sources.


From reading your posts here and browsing your blog it's very clear that you don't seem to give a damn about the evidence and only care about the number of people that agree with you.

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11-05-2017, 03:23 AM
RE: If Jesus Never Existed...
(10-05-2017 07:27 PM)adey67 Wrote:  Lol yes I did mean Irving, was watching an SAS documentary at the time of writing, you can be David Stirling if you want though Wink
Look I know you're not a denier I just think comparing mythicists to them is a false comparison.

When I said earlier in the thread that I don't think holocaust deniers are the "scum of the earth", he is an obvious exception to that and a clear example of how denialism can be connected to hate speech.

But look my point was the attack you made on the gospels. The fact that there's problems with evidence is perfectly normal, and in fact it supports the case for historicity.

Bart Ehrman views mythicism as a form of fundamentalism - as he puts it you can be a Christian fundamentalist, an atheist fundamentalist, a Jewish fundamentalist, etc. I would tend to agree with this assessment - with fundamentalism there is no reasoning with people, they are set in their beliefs. And I think that's tied to people's world-views, it's very hard to change that - even for people that want to. I don't think it's fair that I get attacked in this thread for supporting mainstream history, and I think the main thing that I've learned from this thread is that people continue to have little idea about the state of expert opinion in certain areas.

I would though put it on record that I disagree with Bart on one thing. He said expert opinion is not evidence. Well, according to the NHMRC guidelines it is evidence that comes below other forms of evidence, but I would agree that the best evidence peer-review literature. As Carrier, Price, Brodie, and other mythicist scholars have just about zero support for their theories in peer-review, I would say that's clear evidence against their views. Mythicism has been around for at least 200 years, so there has been plenty of opportunity for it to have gained traction and accrue evidence if it was worth taking seriously.

I think I'm done with this thread adey67. I don't mind discussing with you, but I'm sick of being personally attacked and repeatedly told that the evidence cited by historians "isn't evidence" by others. I would note that even Carrier, Price and Brodie all agree that the NT books are evidentiary material, it's really only the unqualified fundy type atheists that claim they aren't.

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11-05-2017, 05:05 AM
RE: If Jesus Never Existed...
Discourse can sometimes get very heated, I would probably not be the best person to discuss this with, I believe its important to be aware of and admit my own personal limitations and I have to be honest and say sadly I do not have the knowledge or the debating skills to engage with you in a truly meaningful way, I'm learning and I'm a lot better than i was but nowhere near good enough yet. Wink
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11-05-2017, 05:46 AM
RE: If Jesus Never Existed...
(11-05-2017 05:05 AM)adey67 Wrote:  Discourse can sometimes get very heated, I would probably not be the best person to discuss this with, I believe its important to be aware of and admit my own personal limitations and I have to be honest and say sadly I do not have the knowledge or the debating skills to engage with you in a truly meaningful way, I'm learning and I'm a lot better than i was but nowhere near good enough yet. Wink

I think what you've said is important. You're learning. I too seek to learn. There's a lot of people in this thread who seem to think they know better than the experts - and that's a bit worrying. That's why fundamentalists exist, because they reject any criticism that disagrees with their views.

I would say without hesitation that the church I used to belong to is quite fundamentalist. They don't see themselves that way, but I can tell you that they don't accept modern ideas in scholarship like that Paul didn't write the pastorals, and take the Bible more-or-less literally from Moses-on. A number of years ago the associate minister at the time took extreme offence when I said that the KJV was based on the wrong Greek text (which it was!) That was a bit worrying that he did not seem to believe in textual criticism at all. I imagine he might actually believe that Mark worked with Peter and that Matthew and John are eyewitness accounts!

Those are the things I used to believe. But that's because that's what I was taught by the church. Gradually of course those beliefs gave way to reason, and what mythicism does (and why I hate it just as passionately) is the same thing from the opposite end of the extremes - putting belief first and foremost without giving a second thought to modern scholarship. Many people that put forward these views are otherwise intelligent - and in fact there's abundant evidence for that. There are creationist brain surgeons for example that are probably far more intelligent than I am, but on matter of faith they refuse to accept evidence.

A couple of weeks back I was listening to one of my neighbours who is a member of my former church and has been longer than I have been alive, his name is Ken Freeman and he's one of the top astrophysicists in Australia, and in the world. His research led to the discovery that the universe is filled with far more dark matter than previously thought. Many of his students (about 12 or 14 I think) have gone on to become top level science advisers to world leaders. He was talking about his faith and how it affects his work life. Nothing he said about his faith sounded extreme, he's certainly not a fundamentalist. And the interesting thing is that he's not one to boast, if you didn't know who he was and you were listening to the radio you could just think he's an ordinary scientist. I definitely don't know anyone smarter than him, and he's also one of the nicest people I know.

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11-05-2017, 06:02 AM (This post was last modified: 11-05-2017 12:25 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: If Jesus Never Existed...
(11-05-2017 05:46 AM)Aractus Wrote:  A couple of weeks back I was listening to one of my neighbours who is a member of my former church and has been longer than I have been alive, his name is Ken Freeman and he's one of the top astrophysicists in Australia, and in the world. His research led to the discovery that the universe is filled with far more dark matter than previously thought. Many of his students (about 12 or 14 I think) have gone on to become top level science advisers to world leaders. He was talking about his faith and how it affects his work life. Nothing he said about his faith sounded extreme, he's certainly not a fundamentalist. And the interesting thing is that he's not one to boast, if you didn't know who he was and you were listening to the radio you could just think he's an ordinary scientist. I definitely don't know anyone smarter than him, and he's also one of the nicest people I know.

Sentimental drivel is not an argument for anything. No one ever said people of faith are not "nice" or smart. So what EXACTLY was the POINT of that little sermon, and how EXACTLY does it apply here ?
Argumentum ad vericundiam fallacy. Facepalm
For someone who says he's not a theist, you sure are comfortable trotting out their favorite fallacies. "Oh, he's a smart guy, he can't be wrong".
Being an expert in one field does not give anyone expertise in another. Would you go to a very smart hydrologist for your brain surgery ?

Quote:but I'm sick of being personally attacked and repeatedly told that the evidence cited by historians "isn't evidence" by others

.... says the fool who introduced Holocaust Denial into this thread.
What YOU consider for yourself as evidence, (the gospels and Paul), is not accepted as evidence universally.
Historians so not accept anonymous texts. The gospels are anonymous.
Paul's letters are (multiply) edited and he never met Jesus, and the things said of him make no sense. He says what he knows came from a "vision". (LOL) Now "visions" are evidence ?
Why would a Jewish tent-maker "persecute" Jews ? Where did his authority come from ? If he studied under Gamaliel, why does NO JEW talk about his conversion ?
It's ALL lies and bullshit, and there is no way to separate any kernel of truth from the bullshit.
"Liar in one, liar in all".

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11-05-2017, 10:46 AM (This post was last modified: 11-05-2017 11:26 AM by mordant.)
RE: If Jesus Never Existed...
(11-05-2017 05:46 AM)Aractus Wrote:  There's a lot of people in this thread who seem to think they know better than the experts - and that's a bit worrying.
Unconditionally accepting assertions because they proceed from the mouth of an "expert" is a sure way to sooner or later believe nonsense. All assertions must be supported by substantiation of some kind.

It also depends on the field in which one is an "expert" and who decides the definition of "expert". An expert in theology, for example, is just someone with a command of all the ideas about ideas about a faux discipline that is about a topic that's entirely made up. It's exactly like being a subject matter expert in Dungeons and Dragons or some computer game (in fact you can argue that religions are the original role-playing game). You can at best speak to the differing interpretations and theories and which ones have had more currency with people's preferences at particular points in time. You're not even discussing anything related to reality to begin with.

You're on slightly better ground when it comes to someone discussing the (a)historicity of certain alleged events / persons from very long ago with few to no unbiased accounts, but when it comes to the historicity of Jesus you have NO eyewitness accounts (despite the strong tendency of a lot of people to insist they were eyewitness accounts) and you have virtually no secular / incidental corroboration (despite strenuous claims to the contrary by some) and so once again you just have professional speculators, not true experts in a subject that has any actual substance to it.

Finally when it comes to Jesus, whether he existed, who he really was if he did, and the fantastical claims made for him by world religions, you have to remember that most "experts" are beholden to vested interests and sacred cows. There is little, and often no, independence from those who hold the purse strings. Most religious organizations aren't going to fund "scholarly" activities that undermine their dogma. And even liberal theologians have certain shibboleths they won't generally cross. I suspect for example that Bart Erhman has had enough of a challenge keeping his job and his funding with his general departure from Christian orthodoxy; he at least has to not cross the line of questioning whether Jesus was a discrete, single, actual, historical person, or a composite character or an entirely invented mythic figure.

I on the other hand have no such compunctions. I can look at the facts and draw my own conclusions. I have not spent the countless hours in the minutia that Erhman has, but I have certainly looked at the eyewitness accounts (there are none) looked at the alleged secular mentions of Jesus and his miraculous doings (there are none) and the fishy dissonance of the Pauline teaching vs the teachings of the gospels, noted the timing of both documents, and drawn my own conclusions. Sure, just like with the Comey dismissal by Trump, you can advance various theories, none of them remotely credible, to show that this might not have been a politically motivated firing, but you can also follow the heavy preponderance of evidence, the obvious conflicting and often false statements and stories, and conclude with a very high degree of confidence that is WAS nakedly political and points, along with a bunch of other evidence, to a cover-up of something very damaging.

I am basically doing the same here, despite that I'm not a professional politician or journalist. I am just a person who can read and assess available info and I don't have anyone telling me there are certain places I can't go or I might be questioned, demoted, besmirched or fired, I can have an informed opinion about this matter that is likely to be correct. I can also have an informed opinion about the existence of an historical discrete person named Jesus of Nazareth, despite not being either a subject matter expert, or a person who frankly really cares one way or the other.

Now experts in more empirically grounded fields, on which massive working / proven technology is built, is way different than experts in mental masturbation about popular religious dogma. I am much more apt to consult real experts in real fields of expertise. But we aren't talking about that here.
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11-05-2017, 10:57 AM
RE: If Jesus Never Existed...
(11-05-2017 05:46 AM)Aractus Wrote:  I think what you've said is important. You're learning. I too seek to learn. There's a lot of people in this thread who seem to think they know better than the experts - and that's a bit worrying. That's why fundamentalists exist, because they reject any criticism that disagrees with their views.

Fundamentalists also exist because people point to "experts" and take everything they say as truth no matter what.

Plus this topic isn't some cut and dry scientific type discussion, the very topic itself is based on an extremely small body of evidence. On top of that, I'll repeat the ones that disagree with the "experts" aren't just flippantly dismissing said experts, they are addressing their claims....AND there are professonial "experts" that disagree with the "experts" you apparently agree with.
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11-05-2017, 12:21 PM (This post was last modified: 11-05-2017 12:51 PM by Thoreauvian.)
RE: If Jesus Never Existed...
(11-05-2017 10:46 AM)mordant Wrote:  I am basically doing the same here, despite that I'm not a professional politician or journalist. I am just a person who can read and assess available info and I don't have anyone telling me there are certain places I can't go or I might be questioned, demoted, besmirched or fired, I can have an informed opinion about this matter that is likely to be correct.

When I assess Jesus, I look at what the Gospels report that he said. As far as I can tell, almost none of the sayings of Jesus accurately reflect the realities I have come to know through my own reading, thoughts, and experiences. Therefore I can easily dismiss him as being A) God, B) the perfect son of God, or even C) a historical figure of any relevance to my life. If it weren't for the weird social groupings he inspired, he wouldn't occupy my thoughts much at all.
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11-05-2017, 12:23 PM (This post was last modified: 11-05-2017 08:17 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: If Jesus Never Existed...
(11-05-2017 05:46 AM)Aractus Wrote:  There's a lot of people in this thread who seem to think they know better than the experts - and that's a bit worrying. That's why fundamentalists exist, because they reject any criticism that disagrees with their views.

That's actually not true. It's presumptuous nonsense, and it's precisely the opposite here.
When I came here I assumed that Jesus existed, and one would have to be nuts to think otherwise. Mark Fulton (here) showed me that there are other ways to look at Christian origins. Then I saw there are many significant questions surrounding the origin stories, including the fact that the preaching content ascribed to Jesus does not fit his time period. They were more concerned with apocalyptic and messianic themes, and how to get rid of, and live with the Romans. The "Golden Rule" theme (which BTW exists in many other cultures, and is not unique to Jesus' message, as Aractus asserted, incorrectly) and the simplification of the many many Jewish regulations and cultural norms, which had become a problem, as Jews moved out of Israel, and Jerusalem, ("love God and love your neighbor") was the concern of the Rabbis AFTER the destruction of Jerusalem, and when the Diaspora was under way. These were NOT concerns, early in the First Century, when the temple was standing, and the sacrificial temple practices were still very much in place, as well as all the other legal requirements. Jesus does not "fit" in early First Century Israel. NO ONE, (not Carrier, not Price, not Ehrman, NO ONE) addresses that problem. It's MY OWN, that arose from my own study of Jewish cultural history. To blabber on and on about not "accepting the experts" is nothing but crap, and the attempt to invalidate and attempt to portray the discussion here as inauthentic, is dishonest, patronizing and idiotic. Aractus has offered not one original thought on any subject here, merely regurgitated a very simplistic level of orthodox views on every subject. The specifics of Carrier's and Price's ideas, and thoughts, have never been addressed. All he can do is *say* they are outside mainstream thinking, (but has no actual data on, to show anyone).

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11-05-2017, 01:14 PM
RE: If Jesus Never Existed...
From rational Wiki:

Holocaust comparison
Or, how to scrape the bottom of a barrel in the stupidest way possible.

Comparing the quality of Jesus to that of any major person after the invention of the printing press in the west (1436) is bad enough but when people compare denying Jesus as a historical person to Holocaust denial[113][114][115][116][117][118] they are either ignorant of just how much material evidence there is for the Holocaust or are making a strawman.

For the record there were 3,000 tons of truly contemporary (i.e. between 1938-1945) records presented at the 1945-1946 Nuremberg Trials.[119] The 1958 finding aids (eventually the index to the Holocaust evidence) was 62 volumes--just 4 books shy of the number of books (66) traditionally in the entire Bible! Then between 1958 and 2000 they added another 30 volumes, bringing the total to 92.[120]

It is an emotional argument and a totally unfair one as Jesus to the best of our knowledge never had the quantity or quality of evidence that shows the Holocaust happened.



Just sayin'.

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