Richard Carrier On the Historicity of Jesus
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26-10-2015, 02:31 PM
RE: Richard Carrier On the Historicity of Jesus
(26-10-2015 12:50 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  Again this is your prejudice speaking. You inferred that I cannot gauge whether or not Jesus existed, not on the particular strength or weakness of any argument that I made, but on your prejudicial views of believers.
This is such a twist isn't it?
My pointing out that you are prejudice towards believing in the existence of Jesus somehow in your own mind make me prejudice in pointing that out.
(26-10-2015 12:50 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  Notice for the last 2-3 posts of yours, you ignored the criticisms of your conclusions, and now are resorting to letting your biases speak on your behalf.
I've already made my main points, there is no point in me restating them again and again. You simply refuse to accept anything in my points and now I am focusing on inferring a credible account for your refusal to listen.

(26-10-2015 12:50 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  And judging by the fact that I've been a arguing an exclusively secular historical perspective,
In the case where Yeshua speaks and no-one writes it down. Not even Yeshua (whom you believe to be educated and literate) bothers to write down his "amaze-balls" paribles. They get written down decades later and you insist that an amazing system of total recall and retelling upon retelling of uncorrupted, word for word copying occurs. You make out that this is the most credible possibility, much more credible than having stories being distorted or than stories having a source other than Yeshua.

Why are you so determined that they are perfect and come from Yeshua?
Because Jesus is your salvation. You believe that you will burn if you lack belief. You cannot possibly come to any other inference.

This is not my prejudice. It is a reality about you. Personally, I don't care if Yeshua was real or not. I don't care if the parables come from him or not. It makes no difference to me, I have no prejudice one way or the other.

But what is the point trying to discuss the topic with you, when you cannot possibly see anything other than a historical and magical and godly Jesus?
It would be like trying to have an intellectual and honest discussion with a Muslim about whether Mohhamad ever existed. The Muslim would be incapable of inferring that Mohamad didn't exist.
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26-10-2015, 02:39 PM
RE: Richard Carrier On the Historicity of Jesus
(26-10-2015 12:53 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(26-10-2015 12:18 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Then you are not a Christian.
Yes, because Stevil's classifications of what classifies as a Christian or not a Christian, matter's to me.
"matter's to me"?

My statement isn't as an insult. I am trying to work out whether you are capable of infering that Yeshua never existed.

If you don't think it is important to believe in Jesus then you are not a Christian and you are possibly capable of inferring if Jesus existed or not.

If you believe that Jesus is "the way to salvation" then you are incapable of infering his non existence.

Which is it?
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26-10-2015, 03:43 PM
RE: Richard Carrier On the Historicity of Jesus
(26-10-2015 02:31 PM)Stevil Wrote:  This is such a twist isn't it?
My pointing out that you are prejudice towards believing in the existence of Jesus somehow in your own mind make me prejudice in pointing that out.

Yes, your claim that I cannot gauge whether or not Jesus existed, because I am a believer, is based on your own prejudices. My religious beliefs are not dependent on Jesus being historical or not, in fact a mythicist Jesus might even be more favorable to my religious proclivities, than a historical one. Your accusations that I’m slanted by my religious beliefs towards historicity are baseless, and false.

Quote:I've already made my main points, there is no point in me restating them again and again. You simply refuse to accept anything in my points and now I am focusing on inferring a credible account for your refusal to listen.

Yes, you made a variety of points, and I made a variety of counterpoints in regards to them. And rather than continuing that exchange, and building on your earlier contentions in light of my criticism, you decided to abandon ship, and make it about my supposed religious biases. You’re less enlightened on this subject of my religious biases, then you are in regards to historicity, which is not saying much. So you can give that a rest.

If you seriously think my biases are in play, then you should be able to argue which contentions you believe those biases are present in, and why. Which would be odd, since I’m borrowing my argument almost exclusively from an atheist’s historical arguement.

I don’t simply refuse to accept your argument, I point out why I don’t find them reasonable, why they don’t hold up to be a more likely explanations, that you primarily appear to be flirting with possibilities, rather than likelihoods, etc… You already know historicity is not your particular comfort zone, so your knowledge on the topic is very limited, and understandably premature as a result. You haven’t composed them with any real considerations of the subject, making it rather easy to pick apart, and point out the problems with it. But rather than trying to build, and develop a more informed argument, you choose to focus on my supposed religious biases instead.

Quote:They get written down decades later and you insist that an amazing system of total recall and retelling upon retelling of uncorrupted, word for word copying occurs. You make out that this is the most credible possibility, much more credible than having stories being distorted or than stories having a source other than Yeshua.

Let’s take your argument apart a little. Your claim is that whatever body of parables and sayings we have, are likely distorted versions of the original. Since the time between the oral and the written compilations called the Gospels is a few decades. Of course even the Gospels writers used a compilation of written sources to compose their own narratives, so the dating of those sources would be even earlier than the dates of the Gospels.

You primarily infer distortions, not from the actual parables and writings, but based on this extended break between oral and written traditions. You have no particular material, no particular sources or citation of sources with distorted rendering of the similar passages and parables. No actual evidence supporting distorted versions of these parables and sayings, as we might expect if we had folks write down their recollection of sayings in a game of Chinese whispers.

And even though the writings all show a considerable degree of homogeny in regards to the parables and sayings, we should ignore this, because the extended period between the oral and written traditions, make it more likely that parables and sayings we have are distorted renditions of the original ones?

This is the primary basis of your inferences and arguments in regards to the parables and sayings right?

While I might particularly point to the homogeny as to why your expectations of distortions are unlikely, you ignore this, in support of the length of time between oral and written, to make distortion the more likely conclusion?

Quote:Why are you so determined that they are perfect and come from Yeshua?
Because Jesus is your salvation. You believe that you will burn if you lack belief. You cannot possibly come to any other inference.

According to you I’m not a Christian, or at least don’t fit into some category of Christians you’re familiar with, so I’m not sure why you keep painting assumptions about what I do or do not believe, other then to support your own preconditioned prejudices.

Quote:This is not my prejudice. It is a reality about you.

No it’s Stevil beliefs about my reality, informed by nothing other than his own prejudicies.

Quote:Personally, I don't care if Yeshua was real or not. I don't care if the parables come from him or not. It makes no difference to me, I have no prejudice one way or the other.

Yet, you want to poorly argue that they don’t, and want to appeal to Jesus not existing, and want to frame my disagreements with you as based on my religious beliefs. Your prejudices are more apparent in how you want to frame the religious, than anything else. As to why that is, you’re perhaps better off asking yourself that.

Quote:But what is the point trying to discuss the topic with you, when you cannot possibly see anything other than a historical and magical and godly Jesus?

Except of course here we are arguing for a historical, non-magical, and non-godly Jesus.

Quote:It would be like trying to have an intellectual and honest discussion with a Muslim about whether Mohhamad ever existed. The Muslim would be incapable of inferring that Mohamad didn't exist.

And I would be on the historicist side in regards to Mohamad as well, and not because of some affinity towards Islam. If it was argument on whether G. Buddha existed, I would also be in favor of historicity, even though there’s less evidence for him than Jesus.

The question of historicity here is not dependent on a person being Christian. You’d be hard pressed to find actual scholars, and historians in support of this position. It why only two particular names get repeated, and never really extends beyond those two, Carrier and Price.

If you have trouble with the case made for you by a believer, my suggestions it to pick a book written by an unbeliever, such as Erhmans “Did Jesus Exist”, than perhaps one by Carrier, or Carrier’s responses, and it would interesting to hear your opinion about which of the two appears more honest, and reasonable.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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26-10-2015, 03:56 PM
RE: Richard Carrier On the Historicity of Jesus
What is this ? Like the 3rd person in a week telling him he is incapable of an honest discussion ? Yet he claims his % is far different with atheists in general. Hmmmm. Consider
I wonder where they all are and where he ran into all of them ?

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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26-10-2015, 04:01 PM
RE: Richard Carrier On the Historicity of Jesus
(26-10-2015 03:43 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  According to you I’m not a Christian, or at least don’t fit into some category of Christians you’re familiar with, so I’m not sure why you keep painting assumptions about what I do or do not believe, other then to support your own preconditioned prejudices.
I think there is enough question as to your ability to make impartial judgements (regarding Yeshua) that you are obligated to disclose your own position, your own preconceptions, your own believed consequences to your not accepting Jesus as being real.

Do you lose your eternal place in heaven, does it become less likely for you to get there?

What is your position and how does it (not) taint your ability to infer a historical or non historical Jesus?
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26-10-2015, 04:06 PM
RE: Richard Carrier On the Historicity of Jesus
(26-10-2015 02:39 PM)Stevil Wrote:  My statement isn't as an insult. I am trying to work out whether you are capable of infering that Yeshua never existed.

If you don't think it is important to believe in Jesus then you are not a Christian and you are possibly capable of inferring if Jesus existed or not.

If you believe that Jesus is "the way to salvation" then you are incapable of infering his non existence.

Which is it?

I didn't take it as insult. Just that Stevil's classification of what qualifies as a "christian", is something taken with a grain of salt.

All that matters here is whether or not my religious belief, are malleable in a way that would allow for a historical, or non-historical Jesus, or even entirely human one, thereby not particularly imposing any strong dissonance in regards to the topic of historicity. And the answer to that is yes. My religious beliefs allows for plethora of possibilities, including mythicism. I don't oppose mythicist conclusions on religious grounds. Hence why my arguments don't appeal to religious grounds.

And this should lead you conclude is that whatever views I have on salvation, are not particularly dependent on Jesus being historical, in fact a mythicist perspective is entirely appealing to my religious sensibilities. But I can't get past the absurdity of it's conclusions.

Whatever sort of puzzle this puts you in, in regards to drawing assumptions about my religious beliefs, whether or not they fall under Stevil's classification of a Christian, is not particularly relevant, and not a discussion particularly worth going into. It's just to point out that whatever assumptions drawn from some preconfigured box you constructed, are unlikely to holdup as well as you think they do.

I have no problem, with a person accusing me of cognitive dissonance, I just prefer they point it out and infer it from something I actually said here, rather than their misinformed imagination getting the best of them.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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26-10-2015, 04:33 PM
RE: Richard Carrier On the Historicity of Jesus
(26-10-2015 04:06 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  I didn't take it as insult. Just that Stevil's classification of what qualifies as a "christian", is something taken with a grain of salt.

All that matters here is whether or not my religious belief, are malleable in a way that would allow for a historical, or non-historical Jesus, or even entirely human one, thereby not particularly imposing any strong dissonance in regards to the topic of historicity. And the answer to that is yes. My religious beliefs allows for plethora of possibilities, including mythicism. I don't oppose mythicist conclusions on religious grounds. Hence why my arguments don't appeal to religious grounds.

And this should lead you conclude is that whatever views I have on salvation, are not particularly dependent on Jesus being historical, in fact a mythicist perspective is entirely appealing to my religious sensibilities.
Isn't Christianity about Jesus?
If there was no Jesus, how can there be Christianity?
If there is no Jesus, no Salvation through Jesus then there is no life after death at Jesus' side.

Wouldn't you be somewhat of a deist rather than a Christian?

Don't the vast majority of Christian religions consider that a person must believe in Jesus and the resurrection of Jesus in order to be Christian?
I thought you said you were closely aligned with Catholocism?

Seems to me you are portraying yourself to be a deist who seems to like New testament parables but somehow calls himself a Christian.

What would happen to your religious beliefs, your outlook on life and existence if you came to the conclusion that Jesus is a fictional character? What would be the impact for you? Would you still be a Christian, just one that doesn't believe in JC?
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26-10-2015, 06:21 PM (This post was last modified: 26-10-2015 06:29 PM by Tomasia.)
RE: Richard Carrier On the Historicity of Jesus
(26-10-2015 04:33 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Isn't Christianity about Jesus?
If there was no Jesus, how can there be Christianity?
If there is no Jesus, no Salvation through Jesus then there is no life after death at Jesus' side

It doesn’t appear that you understand the contradictory nature of your question.

You’re asking isn’t Christianity dependent on a historical Jesus, while at the same time trying to paint an early form of Christianity that formed independently of any historical reality or person, one created by the open source imaginative and creative efforts of sporadic Christian communities of the first century, and through a series of distortions created a homogenous body of rich parables and sayings, and a story whose influence has hung over us for 2000 years.

To me if this were true, it would be more miraculous than Moses departing the Red Sea, a thing of awe, rather than derision. It’s entirely appealing to me, but also entirely absurd. You think I reject mythicist conclusions because they're offensive at a religious level for me, and that’s entirely false.

On one side of your mouth you want imply that Christianity is made or broken on the question of historicity, and the other side of your mouth you want to peddle an early Christianity not dependent on a historical Yeshua.

Quote:What would happen to your religious beliefs, your outlook on life and existence if you came to the conclusion that Jesus is a fictional character? What would be the impact for you? Would you still be a Christian, just one that doesn't believe in JC?

The only real change would be, that I would be a Christian who doesn’t believe Jesus was a historical person, and who now holds a variety of other historical presuppositions to support this belief. It would correspond to a different set of historical assumptions, but no real impact on what sustains my religious ones.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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26-10-2015, 07:06 PM
RE: Richard Carrier On the Historicity of Jesus
(26-10-2015 06:21 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  You think I reject mythicist conclusions because they're offensive at a religious level for me, and that’s entirely false.
No. I think you are incapable of coming to a conclusion that Jesus isn't real. It's not a matter of whether it is offensive or not.
I think Christians are coerced into believing and that they are led to believe that their eternal future is on the line. If they come to accept that Jesus isn't real then they have no eternal future. If they continue to accept Jesus as their saviour then they have eternity of love and happiness.
(26-10-2015 06:21 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  On one side of your mouth you want imply that Christianity is made or broken on the question of historicity,
Yes, I doubt that there are any Christians that believe Jesus was a myth and purely fictional.
(26-10-2015 06:21 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  and the other side of your mouth you want to peddle an early Christianity not dependent on a historical Yeshua.
Christians believe in a historical Jesus.
At the beginings of Christianity, the early Christians worshipped a Yeshua that they had never met but believed lived as a person.
(26-10-2015 06:21 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  The only real change would be, that I would be a Christian who doesn’t believe Jesus was a historical person, and who now holds a variety of other historical presuppositions to support this belief. It would correspond to a different set of historical assumptions, but no real impact on what sustains my religious ones.
What does Christianity mean to you? How can you be a Christian without a belief in Christ?
What do you believe to be the minimum requirements for a person to be a Christian?
What is it that makes you a Christian?

Perhaps I am a Christian too.
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26-10-2015, 07:53 PM
RE: Richard Carrier On the Historicity of Jesus
(26-10-2015 07:06 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Christians believe in a historical Jesus.
At the beginings of Christianity, the early Christians worshipped a Yeshua that they had never met but believed lived as a person.

Actually you’d have to believe in an early Christianity that didn’t believe in a Yeshua that lived as a person, nor dependent on Jesus being a person, and formed him together within their communities over a few centuries, and which latter Christian mistook as a lived person.

You can’t really start with a belief in a lived person, because that begs the question as to where did those beliefs arise from, if not from a lived person?

Even those arguing for a mythicist, non-historical position, like Carrier and Price don’t make your elementary mistake here. In fact they go to great lengths to argue that folks like Paul belonged to such an early christian sect, that didn’t believe in a Jesus as a lived person.

Quote:Yes, I doubt that there are any Christians that believe Jesus was a myth and purely fictional

Congratulations, then you just unwittingly deflated the foundational assumption of pretty much every book length-mythicist/non-historical Jesus explanations that’s ever been offered.

Quote:No. I think you are incapable of coming to a conclusion that Jesus isn't real.

And you know this how? Because you see your own conclusions as so compelling and strong, that the only explanations as to why they’re being rejected, must be cognitive dissonance?

Ever thought for a minute that this is not the case at all, and that’s perhaps because your own conclusions are far from compelling?

Quote:What does Christianity mean to you? How can you be a Christian without a belief in Christ?
What do you believe to be the minimum requirements for a person to be a Christian?
What is it that makes you a Christian?

Perhaps I am a Christian too.

Well, according to Carrier and Price, there was an early group of believers in Yeshua, who didn’t believe he was a historical person, or that being the Messiah required a historical person, if true, then whatever minimum requirements are for being a Christian, apparently historical beliefs about Yeshua wouldn’t be a part of those requirements.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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