Monday, July 7, 2008

I'm Off

Well, I'm leaving tonight to Israel. I'll be there for a month and then I'll be in Paris for a week. I may have Internet access so I'll try to post. Bye!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Levelling the Playing Field -- #4 -- Xerox deity

His disciples gathered in the middle of the winter, on the darkest day of the year, on December 25th, to celebrate the birth of the Son of G-d. Their deity had been sent to earth in human form to die for the sins of mankind and to redeem the world. He was known as "Savior," "Son of God," "Redeemer," and "Lamb of God." His followers ate a sacred meal of wine and bread, which symbolized his flesh and blood, celebrating the arrival into the world of this saviour-god in a cave, born of a virgin mother. The priests, clad in white, lit candles and sang his praises. They told his faithful how the saviour had travelled far and wide with his 12 disciples as a teacher and illuminator of men. He was buried in a cave and rose from the dead. The walls of his temple were inscribed with the words: "And thou hast saved us by shedding the eternal blood." The divinity? Mithras.

Christianity can hardly call itself original. In fact, it is but another pagan faith. As Christianity developped, it incorporated many of the pagan myths of the surrounding peoples. Many aspects of Jesus' life appear to have been preceded in pagan mythologies of their own gods. The Mediterranean, in the time of early Christianity, was full of diverse creeds and beliefs. Roughly speaking the ancients' gods:

- Were born on or very near our Christmas Day
- Were born of a Virgin-Mother
- Were born in a Cave or Underground Chamber
- Led a life of toil for Mankind
- Were called by the names of Light-bringer, Healer, Mediator, Savior, Deliverer
- Were however vanquished by the Powers of Darkness
- And descended into Hell or the Underworld
- Rose again from the dead, and became the pioneers of mankind to the Heavenly world
- Founded Communions of Saints, and Churches into which disciples were received by Baptism
- Were commemorated by Eucharistic meals

Christianity's legends were so similar to that of other pagan saviour-gods that Christian apologist Justin Martyr (1 Apologia, 66, 4) denounced the devils for sending a divinity like Jesus- yet preceding him. When Christianity was new and just beginning to spread its "Good Word", Mithraism was already an ancient faith. Originating in Persia, Mithras was worshipped as G-d's Messenger of Truth and long revered in by Zoroastrians and Hindus. His cult eventually spread to Rome where it was destroyed by fanatical Christians.

Another god that died and was resurrected to redeem humanity was Attis, a pagan godman originating in ancient Turkey. Attis was born of the Virgin Nana on December 25th. He was both the Father and the Divine Son. Attis' worshipers at a sacramental meal of bread and wine. The wine represented the God's blood; the bread became the body of the savoir. They were baptized in this way: a bull was placed over a grating, the devotee stood under the grating. The bull was stabbed with a consecrated spear. "It's hot reeking blood poured in torrents through the apertures and was received with devout eagerness by the worshiper...who had been born again to eternal life and had washed away his sins in the blood of the bull." Attis's adherents, who received eternal life and remission of sin for his sacrifice, called him the "Good Sheppard," the "Most High God," the "Only Begotten Son" and "Savior." Pagans and Christians had frequent disputes as to the overlaps of their two saviour-deities. The Pagans argued that their god had come first and was therefore the original. The Christians admitted that Jesus came after but that Attis was a Satanic immitation.

Long before any Roman king supposedly plotted to do away with any messianic upstarts, the god-king Osiris had been betrayed and murdered by his cruel brother Seth. The Discovery of Osiris [Inventio Osiridis] was the great autumn festival of the religion. It celebrated the death of the God on October 28th, and His resurrection on November 3rd. On the first day of the festival the faithful, dressed in black, chanted laments, beat their breasts and cried out with grief as they joined Isis (the wife of Osiris) in mourning the death of the G-d. His followers took comfort in the fact that Osiris' sacrifice allowed his to ascend to heaven where he would judge the dead. "The keys of hell and the guarantee of salvation were in the hands of the goddess, and the initiation ceremony itself a kind of voluntary death and salvation through divine grace." [Apuleius, Metamorphosis, Book 11, 21] "Be of good cheer, O initiates, for the god is saved, and we shall have salvation for our woes." [Firmicus Maternus, The Error of Pagan Religions, 22.1]

While the individual details of each deity differ, the basic concept is the same. A god consorts with a mortal woman who bears a demigod. This demigod attracts to him many followers and spreads the good news and truth throughout the land. At a certain point, this god is either killed or betrayed, and dies for the sins of the world. His followers bury him and yet they find his tomb empty, symbolizing his triumph over death. This event is commemorated every year and he is worshipped in mystery cults and rituals. The same goes for Christianity. The heretical Jews who began the Christian offshoot could not fathom G-d as Infinite and Completely Beyond the World. They decided to create G-d in their own image and instead of placing Him, Unknowable, in heaven, He took the form of a human being and descended to earth. When they shared this idea with the pagans, they quickly accepted it as it was familiar to them. All of their gods had human forms. Krishna was born of the virgin Devaki; the Savior Dionysus was born of the virgin Semele. Buddha too was born of a virgin, as were the Egyptian Horus and Osiris. The old Teutonic goddess Hertha was a virgin impregnated by the heavenly Spirit and bore a son. Scandinavian Frigga was impregnated by the All-Father Odin and bore Balder, the healer and savior of mankind.

Christianity is both a good and original faith--- except everything good about it is plagiarized from Judaism and everything original is bad. Worship of Jesus is idolatry in that it reduces G-d to a human being, gives Him a form and places limits on the Limitless One.