Ancient Sumerian Origins of the Easter Story

ishtarOver at the Huffington Post, Valerie Tarico interviews Dr. Tony Nugen about the ancient Sumerian origins of the Easter story. Here are the parallels with Sumerian story of Inanna:

Inanna and Jesus both travel to a big city, where they are arrested by soldiers, put on trial, convicted, sentenced to death, stripped of their clothes, tortured, hung up on a stake, and die. And then, after 3 days, they are resurrected from the dead.

Now there are, to be sure, a number of significant differences between the stories. For one thing, one story is about a goddess and the other is about a divine man. But this is a specific pattern, a mythic template. When you are dealing with the question of whether these things actually happened, you have to deal with the fact that there is a mythic template here.

It doesn’t necessarily mean that there wasn’t a real person, Jesus, who was crucified, but rather that, if there was, the story about it is structured and embellished in accordance with a pattern that was very ancient and widespread.

People were telling this story almost four thousand years before the death and resurrection of Jesus.

They also discuss the similarities between Jesus and Inanna’s husband, Dumuzi:

Dumuzi is the prototype of the non-aggressive, non-heroic male; he cries easily; he is the opposite of the warrior-god in the ancient pantheon. The summer month which corresponds to our month of July is named after him in both the Babylonian and Hebrew calendars, and during this month each year his followers, mostly women, mourn his death. From this myth we are talking about, and from a few other references, we also know that he is resurrected. But unlike Jesus, who dies and is resurrected once, he is imagined to die and be resurrected over and over, each year.

There are other major differences. However, there really are a lot of similarities between the personalities and the stories of Jesus and Dumuzi. They both are tortured and die violent deaths after being betrayed by a close friend, who accepts a bribe from his enemies. They both have a father who is a god and a mother who is human. Dumuzi’s father, the god Enki, also has many similarities to Yahweh, the father of Jesus.

What I find most interesting is that Dr. Tony Nugen is a Presbyterian minister and considers himself a Christian, even though he realizes the resurrection of Jesus is bunk:

I consider myself to be a Christian in a spiritual sense, not in a doctrinal sense. This means my Christianity is defined by values, spiritual practices, and faith rather than belief in a specific set of doctrinal agreements….

If the resurrection of Christ didn’t literally happen, that shouldn’t have any bearing on whether life now is worth living or how we live. From my vantage point, where values and practices are the heart of Christianity, the contradiction lies in people like our recent president who think it’s ok to practice torture and yet call themselves Christians….

From the standpoint of my Christianity, right-wing evangelical fundamentalism is really the opposite of what Christ was about. Those who subscribe to an intolerant, arrogant, inhumane form of Christianity are following a religion that is literally antichrist.

I wish there were more Christians like Dr. Nugen! I think we’d get along quite well.

  • http://aniramzee.wordpress.com aniramzee

    To quote an unknown person; “I’m not saying there isn’t a god.I’m saying it would be great if there was one.” And yes, I do feel Christians lost their ideals a long time back,just like people of most other religions(including my own).I know a lot of atheists who are morally more sound than theists.Religion seems to have become a battle for power,and a quest to gain more followers through conversions.

  • Sock

    I agree with Daniel. If more Christians realized that they were not following the teachings of Christ, the world would be a better place.

  • Alex Guggenheim

    Another amusing post by Daniel. Daniel claims to wholly reject the notion of God yet claims that if believers only believed a way that satisfied him, then he and those believers would get along quite well. LOL

  • http://foreverinhell.blogspot.com Personal Failure

    Unfortunately, the bible is so big, and contains so much conflicting material, that really any viewpoint can be supported with at least one quote from it- especially if you get all interpretive about it.

  • 4Christopher

    you cannot be a christian and not believe in the resurrection

  • ungullible

    I agree – if more Christians were like this, the whole religion thing would be a non-issue for me. My in-laws probably match this description of Christianity (their definition of being Christian is to be “Christ-like” in behavior regardless of any other details of your creed), and there is zero conflict between our families.

    That said, I agree with 4Christopher that these people aren’t really Christian. They may call themselves such, but they have deviated so far from the mainstream and historical definition that I don’t really consider them as such. It seems to me that they are more accurately called deists, but they can’t quite bring themselves to lose the ceremonial baggage and community they’ve grown up with, so they are trying to maintain the best of both worlds.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Amazing how some can write what looks to be complete fiction and represent it as the truth .

    Inanna’s reason for visiting the underworld is unclear. The reason she gives to the gatekeeper of the underworld is that she wants to attend her brother-in-law Gud-gal-ana’s funeral rites. However, this may be a ruse; Inanna may have been intending to conquer the underworld.

    The garments are each representations of powerful mes she possesses. Perhaps Inanna’s garments, unsuitable for a funeral, along with Inanna’s haughty behaviour make Ereshkigal suspicious

    Following Ereshkigal’s instructions, the gatekeeper tells Inanna she may enter the first gate of the underworld, but she must hand over her lapis lazuli measuring rod. She asks why and is told ‘It is just the ways of the Underworld’. She obliges and passes through. Inanna passes through a total of seven gates, each removing a piece of clothing or jewelry she had been wearing at the start of her journey, thus stripping her of her power.

    the afflicted woman was turned into a corpse. And the corpse was hung on a hook.”

    whereas the blog author dishonestly extrapolates to these claims :

    sentenced to death, stripped of their clothes, tortured, hung up on a stake, and die.

    as pathetic an attempt as the claim of some anti-theists of similarities of mithra and Jesus

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Not even good fiction Daniel Florien. I await your next comic book version ancient history or mythology with enthusiasm .

  • http://www.redconfetti.com/ redconfetti

    The root of my athiesm is the fear based doctrine and the attitudes and actions of those which claim to be ‘Christian’.

    I’ve known that this perspective is truer, and I still strongly oppose what all religions have become now that I have opened myself up to understanding the deeper spiritual truths these religions originally intended to transmit to the people.

  • http://looking-closely.blogspot.com Rachel Rev

    The problem I have with those like Dr. Nugent who identify as Christian and think like this is that they are the reason I am still in the church and why I still identify as Christian. I come so very close to leaving all together, finding more solidarity with the skeptics and former faithful than I do among even the liberal “believers” in my tradition. And then I read something like this that makes me think, “Yeah, I can remain in this tradition. There’s room for me here.” But, as you suggested, Daniel, there aren’t enough Dr. Nugents out there. And they certainly aren’t in the pulpits or pews of any churches I attend. So reading something like this interview, for me, just delays the inevitable.

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  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    COMPARE :

    http://www-etcsl.orient.ox.ac.uk/section1/tr141.htm

    Inanna and Jesus both travel to a big city, where they are arrested by soldiers, put on trial, convicted, sentenced to death, stripped of their clothes, tortured, hung up on a stake, and die. And then, after 3 days, they are resurrected from the dead.

  • http://dissonanced.wordpress.com/ Greg

    I am amazed at how much time you spend criticizing other people’s beliefs. Are you not able to to just ignore them?

  • http://www.rakeback4e.com/ Pete

    The money makes world go around…

  • http://rhoblogy.blogspot.com Rhology

    Ho hum, another day, another “Jesus is a copycat” story. What’s wrong – did you get tired of defending the lame and tattered Mithras/Isis/Adonis/Zeitgeist crap that atheists usually throw out there?

  • http://r.yuwie.com/oceansnsunsets/ ocean

    Interesting blog, thanks for sharing. Ocean

  • http://brgulker.wordpress.com/ brgulker

    Great post, Daniel. This is the type of stuff that first drew me to your blog.

    I’ve never researched the similarities/differences between the resurrection stories of Jesus and other ancient mythologies, but I’m sure it would make for an interesting study.

    What I find most interesting is that Dr. Tony Nugen is a Presbyterian minister and considers himself a Christian, even though he realizes the resurrection of Jesus is bunk:

    I consider myself to be a Christian in a spiritual sense, not in a doctrinal sense. This means my Christianity is defined by values, spiritual practices, and faith rather than belief in a specific set of doctrinal agreements….

    If the resurrection of Christ didn’t literally happen, that shouldn’t have any bearing on whether life now is worth living or how we live. From my vantage point, where values and practices are the heart of Christianity, the contradiction lies in people like our recent president who think it’s ok to practice torture and yet call themselves Christians….

    From the standpoint of my Christianity, right-wing evangelical fundamentalism is really the opposite of what Christ was about. Those who subscribe to an intolerant, arrogant, inhumane form of Christianity are following a religion that is literally antichrist.

    I wish there were more Christians like Dr. Nugen! I think we’d get along quite well.

    First, does he actually deny or affirm the resurrection as an event in history? Or, is he fudging and simply dodging the question? I suspect the latter, but if he clearly denies it as a historical event elsewhere, I’d be happy to be wrong.

    I wish there were more Christians like Dr. Nugen! I think we’d get along quite well.

    More Christians that deny the resurrection? Or more Christians who resist right-winged evangelical-fundamentalism?

    I’m definitely among the latter group.

    However, I’m not necessarily a part of the former.

    Paul clearly says that if the resurrection did not happen, then our faith is in vain — strong, strong words. And hence the pushback from classical Christians to the more “despiritualized” groups.

    For me, belief in the resurrection is just that — belief — just like the rest of my faith is.

    Let me try to say this as simply and briefly as I can — because I have to get work done today :)

    There is a big difference between the following two statements.

    “The resurrection of Jesus is a historical event and actually did happen in human history.”

    “I believe the resurrection of Jesus actually did happen, and I believe in the hope that the resurrection represents.”

    I affirm the latter, which probably puts me somewhere between Dr. Nugen and classical Christianity.

    That said, I share the concerns of many people here who are concerned about the intolerance from the right, even though I don’t dwell on that during my posts. However, I think it’s possible for atheists and Christians to co-exist in society without requiring Christians to give up their beliefs — because believing in the resurrection, for example, does not at all require a posture of intolerance. Because from my perspective, that intolerance does not derive from Jesus, the stories told about him, or the apostolic witness to him. And that is the point at which Dr. Nugen’s words resonate most with me.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    SAD :(

    In psychology and cognitive science, confirmation bias is a tendency to search for or interpret new information in a way that confirms one’s preconceptions and to avoid information and interpretations which contradict prior beliefs. It is a type of cognitive bias and represents an error of inductive inference, or as a form of selection bias toward confirmation of the hypothesis under study or disconfirmation of an alternative hypothesis.

    Confirmation bias is of interest in the teaching of critical thinking, as the skill is misused if rigorous critical scrutiny is applied only to evidence challenging a preconceived idea but not to evidence supporting it-wiki

  • DarkMatter

    True christians always speak the “truth” according to what they know in part, they have “Trinity God” to guide them to seperate the chaffs from the wheat.

    They call it the “Mind Of Christ”.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    So lets recap . Any mythological deity prior to today’s Christianity that ever went to the “big city ” is a template ..

    Any mythological deity prior to todays christianity that was ever arrested by soldiers , escorted by guards , had people of authority hanging around them in near vicinity, is a template ..

    Any mythological deity prior to today’s Christianity that ever took of clothes or jewelry willingly or were stripped of cloths or had their hat inadvertently fall off is a template

    Any mythological deity prior to today’s Christianity that ever was hung out on a rock or hanged , or put on a stake {sic (hook) displayed in any way on any contrivance is a template.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    JOE :

    “evidence ” is something a corporeal entity thinks a hypothetical incorporeal creator of reality should produce . A corporeal entity thinks thus that “things ” even concepts ? qualia ? all should fall within the parameters of their own 2 dimensional thinking , expectations .

    They seek evidence and use terms “exist” when they themselves can provide same of their own

    _____________________________________

    Unless/unless I hear otherwise, I suppose the following are the intended answers that Joe gives(note, each one a *question*, not an answer)…..

    Joe: “Oh ? how much does your own conscious weigh ?”

    The average human brain weighs about 3 pounds (1.4 kilograms) To my knowledge, there is no scientific substantiation that “consciousness” can exist independently of the human brain.
    ___________________________________

    So , you concede that whatever it is that you claim is “you ” is just chemical reactions , a physical, empirical , a process or sum . Self awareness introspection are out of your control and only mere determined reactions . You refute your own existence .

    ______________________________________
    >
    Joe: “When you say the word ‘Exist’ i take it you mean like YOU exist?”

    Yes.

    “Where were you 1o,ooo years ago ?”

    Nowhere—the same “place” that you were.

    ________________________________
    JOE

    You concede your own presumed existence is temporally challenged , yet expect a hypothetical creator of the reality you reside to fall within the bounds of your own observation .

    Joe: “where will you be 1o,ooo years from now ?”

    (see previous answer)

    “Show me your ‘existence’.

    I have a policy that I don’t give my home address out on public forums. I can assure that I exist—but for sake of argument, let’s say that I don’t exist.

    Okay; done……now, how exactly does my non-existence validate the existence of invisible, conscious, creator-beings???

    _________________________________

    JOE

    Your premise is flawed

  • http://billpost.blogspot.com/ Bill

    @joe55a

    Joe – you are clearly passionate about your beliefs. Please take a minute and explain to us non-believers exactly what your religious/spiritual beliefs are. (Are you christian? If so what variety?) Then please take a few minute to explain to us why your beliefs are right/true?

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a
  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Theres no reply button here . I would never delete a comment . Just made that blog to expedite comments and take a discussion towards the merits or lack thereof God , existence etc deeper metaphysics ,cosmological , ontological, faith , empiricism, knowledge w/e.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Had the blog said , there are some similarities as:

    Inanna went to possibly conquer the underworld :

    Jesus went to conquer death via the cross , death and resurrection

    As well as a mention of 3 days etc , yea some similarities .

    But when the real story is changed to this degree to make it fit , isn’t honest and creates ignored conflict.

    Lets say for instance , he had used “hook ” instead of stake .

    But here it becomes problematic and non sequitur .

    Is the fact that Ianna was hung on a hook, a template for Jesus history or story(Christianity) , or a template for the common justice /sentencing practice of the Romans and other cultures ?

    Anyways , I enjoyed the discussion , you all seem pretty polite , but am having some difficulties replying to the posts I want . I had to reply 3 times to one and none went through . I have had wordpress for some time , but rarely used it , im sure its probably pilot error on my part .

    I will be here if anyone wants to tell me about future blogs here or discuss there . Thanks

    http://joe55a.wordpress.com/2009/04/13/reasonable-faith/

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    LRA wrote :

    He wants you to go on his blog because if you defeat him, he can just erase your comments.

    Joe:

    I’m surprised you have the courage to get out of bed LRA , considering , what might , maybe, would’ve.

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  • http://unreasonablefaith.com Daniel Florien

    Who are you to say that? Why can’t you follow the moral teachings of Jesus and not believe in fairy tales? Why can you define what a “Christian” is, but not someone else?

  • Reginald Selkirk

    You cannot be a Christian or a Jew and believe that insects have more than four legs. The Bible is clear on that point.

  • http://christinahouck.com Christina

    Then why does the bible say that to be saved we must believe in our heart that God raised him from the dead? Rom 10.10? I suppose the bible has defined what a Christian is.

  • LRA

    I agree with Daniel. You can be a Jesus follower the way someone might be a follower of the teachings of Ghandi. You don’t have to believe he was divine to look at this philosophical doctrines and agree with them. You can realize that the book was embellished by ancient people in order to fit their concept of “history” (cyclical, with great figures as archetypes) and still keep your rationality in tact.

    Of course limiting yourself philosophically to the teachings of Jesus would also mean that you miss out on other great works of literature from which you can also glean moral tropes.

  • http://brgulker.wordpress.com/ brgulker

    Who are you to say that? Why can’t you follow the moral teachings of Jesus and not believe in fairy tales? Why can you define what a “Christian” is, but not someone else?

    I think it’s helpful to think about it in this way:

    There’s “classical” Christianity — the type that affirms the major claims of the early creeds, and hence Trinity, Incarnation, etc., etc.

    Then, there is some type of “despiritualized” Christianity in which Jesus plays the role of Ghandi.

    Both groups could legitimately claim the term, I think.

    What I don’t understand is why the latter group would want to, because it would seem to link them so intimately with the former group — and NOT being the former group is very important to them. In other words, why go through the hassle of all those definition issues.

  • Walter

    “Then why does the bible say that to be saved we must believe in our heart that God raised him from the dead? Rom 10.10? I suppose the bible has defined what a Christian is.”

    That is Paul’s opinion.

    Matthew has Jesus say that eternal life comes from keeping the commandments. -Matthew 19:17

    Should we believe Matthew or Paul?

    The synoptic gospels do not mention salvation by belief on the resurrection.

  • DarkMatter

    “The man however, says that he has fulfilled those commandments. So Christs asks him to give away his possessions, but the man was unwilling. Christ did not condemn him, but to follow Christ you would have to give your entire life away. The passage is more or less about the cost to follow Christ.”

    -So this passage of the rich does not stand after His so-called resurrection. Now, don’t touch the rich.

    “What paul is talking about is dealing with the fact that at the time the verse was written, Caesar was in power. At that time, Caesar was calling all roman citizens to bow down and call him Lord. For paul to be so bold as to say “confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, AND believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead,” is basically calling for his own death. ”

    -Since it was his bold argument against Caesar at that time, it is not applicable to us(not roman citizens) now who do not believe that human authorities are God or elohim.

  • http://www.girlchild.wordpress.com mrsmarshall

    I totally agree! The term Christian is, for these people, the only thing they can call themselves. It is comfortable for them, and is easily spoken when they are asked to label themselves spiritually.

    I really really appreciate this post Daniel!

  • Sehro

    You are just the Cadbury’s egg of detestation, aren’t you?

  • Reginald Selkirk

    I don’t understand your “LOL.” The biggest problem I have with some Christians today is their insistence on imposing their beliefs and values on others. If a large group of Christians were not trying to destroy the education system and impose their value system on others through governmental powers on issues like gay marriage, stem cell research, abortion rights, endorsement of religion in various governmental practices, then the fact that I do still disagree with them on theological issues would not be such a big deal. It makes perfect sense, the fact that you consider it to be LOL-worthy is quite strange.

  • Confused

    Another amusing troll by Alex.

    If by “believed in a way that satisfied him” you mean being honest, consistent and rational in their reasoning and acting with respect for other people, then yes, exactly correct. I don’t think you’d find many atheists who feel differently.

    And rejecting the notion of God has nothing to do with how well you get along with people who don’t. It is not what you believe that is important, it is how you act.

  • DorkMan

    Alex, in case you hadn’t noticed: no-one is impressed by your trolling. Why don’t you just piss off and go with people who give a shit what you have to say?

  • chouck0411

    Good point. I did seem to use that verse out of context. A lot of churches will use that romans road thing to bring people to Christ as if it is the fool proof method of salvation, or like a 123 step process. Sorry about that…

    I don’t believe there is a conflict in the teachings here however. In Matthew the resurrection hadn’t happened yet, at the same time, the rich young man says “what must i do to have eternal life,” and Christ begins to quote the commandments, the law, which is unfulfillable by man, which Christ mentions later in verse 26.

    The man however, says that he has fulfilled those commandments. So Christs asks him to give away his possessions, but the man was unwilling. Christ did not condemn him, but to follow Christ you would have to give your entire life away. The passage is more or less about the cost to follow Christ.

    What paul is talking about is dealing with the fact that at the time the verse was written, Caesar was in power. At that time, Caesar was calling all roman citizens to bow down and call him Lord. For paul to be so bold as to say “confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, AND believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead,” is basically calling for his own death.

    Both are following the subject of what it takes to follow Christ. The resurrection is important in that it leads to believe in Christ’s divinity. Christ enters into new life and conquers death. He dies the death we deserved for sin. Since he rose from the grave, and bore all the sins of the world, we no longer have that debt to pay. What Christ becomes after his death and resurrection is our reconciliation to God. Since Adam sinned, we were separated from God because there was no atonement for our sin. Christ became that.

  • LRA

    Joe-

    You need to read up on the history of religion:

    http://www.ecst.csuchico.edu/~brantler/homepage.html

    It is clear that the claims in Jesus’ story are based on previously established archetypes of “suffering saviors” already found in the Mediterranean at the time Jesus lived.

  • Confused

    Umm. Did you read this blog post? Or did you read the first line and make up what the rest of it was? Otherwise, you’re confusing the “blog author” with the “interviewee of an external article”.

    Either way, you evidently missed this line:
    “Now there are, to be sure, a number of significant differences between the stories [...] But this is a specific pattern, a mythic template. When you are dealing with the question of whether these things actually happened, you have to deal with the fact that there is a mythic template here.”

    It’s pretty obvious – not least with the fact that these stories were written 4000 years apart – that they are not analogous, and both Daniels post and the original source make that clear. Nobody is saying that they took the story of Inanna and swapped her name of Jesus, which seems to be the straw man you’re railing against. The point is that there is pattern that is being repeated, in much the same way that the immaculate conception was a repetition of earlier myths.

    I appreciate that it’s irksome to see people oversimplifying a rich and complex story to make their point, especially when other people grab onto it without understanding the subtleties, but that doesn’t mean their point is invalid.

  • ThisGodlessEndeavor

    LOL…you’re an embarrassment.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inanna

    Good to see that even though you didn’t bother to cite your source, you did take the time to cut out the parts of the article you didn’t feel like pasting.

    I’m not a betting man, but if I were, I’d bet that your post about Horus is cut and pasted from Wiki as well.

    BTW, the username is a link to a “work online from home” website.

  • gamingguy

    Actually, the passage in Leviticus that claims that isn’t very clear at all, and it really only says that you can’t eat things that creep with only four legs. It never says there can’t be things with six legs.

  • Andrew N.P.

    The LOL makes perfect sense once you realize that Googie Howser M.D. is a troll. He’s trying to annoy the people here, by saying stupid things like the above.

  • trj

    It’s argument by LOL. It’s not supposed to make sense, it’s only meant to annoy. It’s typically employed by trolls. When a person uses it excessively in his posts you know he has nothing intelligent to say and should simply be ignored.

  • gamingguy

    Alright, look at the story of Horus.
    -Born of a virgin with God as his father
    -Baptized in a river by Anup the Baptizer
    -Anup was later beheaded
    -He had 12 disciples
    -He walked on water
    -He was crucified to death
    -He rose again on the third day ascended to Heaven

    Krishna was also born of a virgin

    The Greek god Attis was crucified and was resurrected on the third day.

    Jesus’ story is not original.

    SOURCES:
    http://culturalvision.net/html/pagan_religions.html
    Bill Maher’s documentary “Religulous”

  • http://metroblog.blogspot.com Metro

    joe55a appears to be one of those trolls it’s best not to feed. Incapable of recognizing his own charlatanry and cognitive dissonance, he contents himself with the worst standard of Christianist argument and thinks it good to insult the people he’s arguing with.

    In short: Troll, and not one of the brighter ones.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    You need to check your sources . Rubbish

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Alright, look at the story of Horus.

    Ok lets :)

    -Born of a virgin with God as his father

    FALSE :By merging with Hathor, Isis became the mother of Horus,also believed to be believed to be the son of Ra .

    Baptized in a river by Anup the Baptizer

    SOURCE : Anup the Baptizer . Show me a reputable source about any baptisms in egypt relating to horus .

    -Anup was later beheaded

    SOURCE?

    -He had 12 disciples
    He walked on water
    -He was crucified to death
    -He rose again on the third day ascended to Heaven

    ALL Unsourced fiction

    Krishna was also born of a virgin

    The Greek god Attis was crucified and was resurrected on the third day.

    Jesus’ story is not original.

    SOURCES:
    http://culturalvision.net/html/pagan_religions.html
    Bill Maher’s documentary “Religulous”

    ARE YOU SERIOUS ? This is utter fabrication and nonsense backed up by a frelling blog lmao ,and an anti christian troll named bill maher.

    The Eye of Horus became an important Egyptian symbol of power. Horus had a man’s body and a falcon’s head. Horus fought with Seth for the throne of Egypt. In this battle one of his eyes was injured and later it was healed by Hathor. This healing of the eye became a symbol of renewal.

    Horus is recorded in Egyptian hieroglyphs as ḥr.w and is reconstructed to have been pronounced *Ḥāru, meaning “Falcon”.

    A sky god a sun god , the story of set . NO MENTION

    All just desperate attempts to find some similarities that only exist in the fantasies of the anti-theist .

    Completely ignored the real stories of Horus

  • Joe

    I like how you rail against unsourced or “poorly” sourced information then cite nothing for your own accounts of the stories.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    The onus is on the person making the assertions that the two accounts are similar .

    REPEAT AFTER ME :

    I will never google a militant atheist site for facts , truth or accurate accounts of history or mythology in an honest attempt to not look ridiculous in front of my blogging peers.

  • ThisGodlessEndeavor

    The onus is on the person making the assertions that the two accounts are similar .

    REPEAT AFTER ME :

    I will never google a militant atheist site for facts , truth or accurate accounts of history or mythology in an honest attempt to not look ridiculous in front of my blogging peers.

    1. This place is pretty far from millitant.

    2. He actually provided a source, if you like it or not, which is more than you can say. Atleast a statement of your education history or ONE link backing any of your statements would make some people take you more seriously.

    3. You’ve clearly missed the point anyway because all these stories do contain the same elements even if/though the specifics are varied.

    You go ahead and spend your time debating about whether or not merging gods constitues virgin births and we’ll spend the rest of time recognizing that the underlying literary hero patterns are whats of interest here, not the specifics of each story. If each story were exactly the same like you claim this site is claiming then there would only be one story, not thousands.

  • trj

    Come to think of it, it shouldn’t be that hard to create a posting filter that measures the LOL ratio. If, say, more than 25% of a person’s post contained LOLs, that person could be automatically banned, for the good of mankind.

  • trj

    The passage states that it’s ok to eat locusts, grasshoppers, and beetles that have four legs. Not many of those around.

    All other “flying creeping things” that have four legs/feet are not ok to eat. Not many of those around either.

  • LRA

    You’re calling a university (a dot edu) website rubbish?

    That’s rubbish.

  • LRA

    BWT- are you a university professor? If not, then what credentials do you have to challenge this source? Do you even have a degree (preferably advanced) in religious studies… or did god *just tell you* the bible is *real*?

  • ThisGodlessEndeavor

    Sorry, the above post is in response to this:

    “Amazing how some can write what looks to be complete fiction and represent it as the truth .

    Inanna’s reason for visiting the underworld is unclear. The reason she gives to the gatekeeper of the underworld is that she wants to attend her brother-in-law Gud-gal-ana’s funeral rites. However, this may be a ruse; Inanna may have been intending to conquer the underworld.

    The garments are each representations of powerful mes she possesses. Perhaps Inanna’s garments, unsuitable for a funeral, along with Inanna’s haughty behaviour make Ereshkigal suspicious

    Following Ereshkigal’s instructions, the gatekeeper tells Inanna she may enter the first gate of the underworld, but she must hand over her lapis lazuli measuring rod. She asks why and is told ‘It is just the ways of the Underworld’. She obliges and passes through. Inanna passes through a total of seven gates, each removing a piece of clothing or jewelry she had been wearing at the start of her journey, thus stripping her of her power.

    the afflicted woman was turned into a corpse. And the corpse was hung on a hook.”

    whereas the blog author dishonestly extrapolates to these claims :

    sentenced to death, stripped of their clothes, tortured, hung up on a stake, and die.

    as pathetic an attempt as the claim of some anti-theists of similarities of mithra and Jesus.”

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Yes I did , and at least the sources are reputable , and quickly show that the blogs author had no intention of sticking to the actual myth .

    Inanna and Jesus both travel to a big city, where they are arrested by soldiers, put on trial, convicted, sentenced to death, stripped of their clothes, tortured, hung up on a stake, and die. And then, after 3 days, they are resurrected from the dead.

    COMPLETE UTTER FICTION .

    Ianna went to the underworld , not a big city . She was never arrested by soldiers …she was never tortured ..she was put on a hook then after 3 days and 3 nights her minister pleaded with 3 gods per instruction , then her husband and husbands sister evetually took her place .

    BTW you cant debate so you try to dig on some personal info ? My username link is the website wordpress asked for on info , but here’s a dick tracy junior detective badge for ya …well done ..

    * Wolkstein, Diana & Kramer, Samuel Noah (1983) Inanna: Queen of Heaven and Earth (Harper Perennial) ISBN 0-06-090854-8
    * George, Andrew, translator (1999) The Epic of Gilgamesh (Penguin Books) ISBN 0-14-044919-1
    * Inana’s descent to the nether world: translation. The Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature. University of Oxford Library.
    * Frymer-Kensky,Tikva. In the Wake of the Goddesses. New York: MacMillan, 1992.
    * Fulco, William J., S.J. “Inanna.” In Eliade, Mircea, ed., The Encyclopedia of Religion. New York: Macmillan Group, 1987. Vol. 7, 145-146.
    * Jacobsen, Thorkild. The treasures of darkness: a history of Mesopotamian religion. Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1976.
    * Mitchell, Stephen. Gilgamesh:A New English Translation. New York: Free Press (Div. Simon & Schuster), 2004.
    * Enheduanna. “The Exaltation of Inanna (Inanna B): Translation”. The Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature. University of Oxford Library. 2 December 2004.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Yes I am calling that site rubbish , written by nobodies . For example the source that was provided quote:

    Symbolic aspects of the cult also found their way into Christianity. The two are as follows:

    1. Mithras’ birth was celebrated on December 25.

    There is no birth date of Christ stated in the Bible .

    The attractiveness of this cult was partly due to the fact that it contained a story of death and resurrection, which is similar to the Christian faith.

    Clearly the malarkey’s intent is to find similarities in Christianity and myths , not an unbiased factual account of different religions , myth stories .

    Yet you suggest that this is an unbiased ” quote ” history of religion:” and to ” read up on “it”

    Go sit down …..

  • LRA

    Well, guess what. I’ll take the opinion/argument of a scholar over a country boy any day.

    My guess is that a scholar is more widely read than you.

  • LRA

    Since you didn’t like the first article, here is another (better if you will) article on myth in the Mediterranean:

    This is from the Dictionary of the History of Ideas:

    http://etext.virginia.edu/cgi-local/DHI/dhi.cgi?id=dv3-36

    Please read the whole article before commenting.

  • LRA

    Pay special attention to this part:

    “We cannot trace the intricate
    lines which join the Jewish Messiah, Son of Man, Heal-ing Remnant and Suffering Servant to Christ’s ministry and passion, or the various adaptations to real history of the idea of the millennium. Christ the Healer also brought suffering, as Paul said (Romans 6:4): “Are ye ignorant that all who have been baptized unto Christ Jesus have been baptized unto his death?” Like the circumcision of Abraham and the Jews, baptism is an initiation, a rebirth, to what Paul calls “newness of life”
    (Eliade, 1958; Hooke [1956], p. 95). By substitution ritual, as with the Old Testament scapegoat Azazel, Christ attracts the sins of all men (Hooke [1956], p. 204). His Resurrection promises a resurrection to us all, if we follow the holy pattern. Yet his own message was often simpler: “The kingdom of God is at hand:
    repent ye, and believe the Gospel” and “Thou art not far from the kingdom of God” (Mark 1:15, 12:34).
    Driven by the Pharisees’ questioning he says: “The
    kingdom of God cometh not with observation… for
    behold, the kingdom of God is within you” (Luke
    17:20). Yet as time elapsed and Christ died, to be resurrected AS WERE Adonis and Orpheus and the Phoenix and Psyche, to walk with God as Enoch and Noah and Elijah did, new speculation arose (Throckmorton, pp.
    40, 57, 199). The mystery cults of Asia and of Greece, so vigorously warred against and perpetually revived in Judaism, brought new strength to Judaea’s child, Christianity. The Fourth Gospel (A.D. 90-110) begins Creation not with a bird-like Spirit of God on the waters, but with the Word, the Logos. Jewish and Christian apocalyptic catch the spirit of the mysteries
    (Hooke [1956], pp. 102-43). Nearly contemporary with the Fourth Gospel is the Book of Revelation (80-96?), by a John who was probably neither the Beloved Disciple nor the writer of the Fourth Gospel (on the dates
    see Peake [1919], pp. 744, 926).”

    We’ve been trying to tell you!!!

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    No I’m just a country boy , Which in fact does qualify me to call BS when I see it

  • LRA

    M’kay. That’s real convincing.

  • DorkMan

    Outstanding arrogance Joe, outstanding.

    None so blind as those who will see, ‘ey?

  • Roger

    Joe don’t need no book larnin’–just a computer and an Internet connection! Well, joe, my computer, Internet connection, status as a “country boy” (I’m from Oklahoma), AND my degrees qualifies me to say that you’re full of nonsense, full stop.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Evidently Vanna you couldnt even buy a clue ..

    Either way, you evidently missed this line:
    “Now there are, to be sure, a number of significant differences between the stories [...]

    put on trial, convicted, sentenced to death, stripped of their clothes, tortured, hung up on a stake, and die.

    The most significant difference is how far the real story and the fiction is ….THIS EXCERPT HAS ABSOLUTELY NO TRUTH IN IT

    The “fabrication story DOES resemble a pattern , a pattern of intellectual dishonesty .

    Put on trial : FALSE , wanted to attend a funeral or conquer the underworld . ITS UNCLEAR . What we do know is that neither remotely suggest a “trial”

    Convicted : POPPYCOCK

    Stripped of their clothes . In the Inanna story she also had jewelry . No mention of that in the Bible on Jesus .Passes through 7 gates , again no mention of that in the Bible .

    STAKE = CROSS ? in reality a HOOK ?

    And some more of the story ..SOURCE WIKIPEDIA

    They next came upon Dumuzi, Inanna’s husband. He was sitting in nice clothing and enjoying himself despite his wife supposedly still being missing in the underworld. Inanna, displeased, decrees that the demons shall take him – and herself uses the same “look of death” etc that were previously used upon her by Ereshkigal. Dumuzi tried to escape his fate but a fly told Inanna and the demons where he was. However, Dumuzi’s sister, out of love for him, begged to be allowed to take his place. It was then decreed that Dumuzi spent half the year in the underworld and his sister take the other half.

    Oh yea ,amazing parallels there LMAO !

  • LRA

    Ok, I will.

    Inana descended into the underworld. Jesus descended into hell.

    As part of the rites of the underworld, her clothes and turban were removed. Jesus was stripped before he was sent to the cross to die and go to hell.

    Inana was judged: “The Anuna, the seven judges, rendered their decision against her. They looked at her — it was the look of death. They spoke to her — it was the speech of anger. They shouted at her — it was the shout of heavy guilt. The afflicted woman was turned into a corpse. And the corpse was hung on a hook.” Jesus was also judged, shouted at, put on a tree (or cross or whatever you want to call it) until he turned into a corpse.

    “After three days and three nights had passed,” Inana’s minister lamented and appealed to Inana’s father (the third one) who “To the kur-jara he gave the life-giving plant. To the gala-tura he gave the life-giving water.” And Jesus was resurrected on the third day as well.

    Inana ascends from the underworld and confronts her brother in law who is sitting on a magnificent throne. Jesus ascends from hell and sits on the right hand of god.

    Duh.

  • DorkMan

    @joe: listen work-from-boy, I think you have done enough damage to your credibility for one day.
    Why not concede the point, and try again tomorrow on a different thread?

  • Francesc

    My Atheism is not based on any fear doctrine. The damage religion is doing to our society does not make any religion more -not less- believable. My Atheism is based on common sense and an absolute lack of evidence supporting an exceptional claim “there is a god”.

    On those circumstances, believing in a god is the same as believing in fairies, dwarfs, unicorns or magic. And living according to such beliefs is, at least, risky.

    Can you define what an “spiritual truth” is, without involving a trascendent knowledge or unsupported claims?

  • ThisGodlessEndeavor

    You fail and fail again to grasp the point.

    If the stories were EXACTLY THE SAME there wouldn’t be 1000s of versions of them.

    The point is the SIMILARITIES between these two and countless others.

    The professor in the main article does first hand research in this field, calls himself a practicing Christian, and is able to outline the SIMILARITIES between the two stories.

    You read a Wikipedia page, decided that since every detail (of the work done by others) isn’t exactly the same that this is completely outlandish and fabricated just to get across an agenda.

    Hmmm, which one holds more credibility?

  • http://tabulacrypticum.wordpress.com Randall Arnold

    Point of article completely missed by joe55a, and his continued defense of a fundamental error in comprehension demonstrates he has no desire to discuss/debate that point with any degree of intellectual honesty.

  • DorkMan

    NO – religion makes a business of getting in my face all the time in profound ways.
    That is why I personally will talk out against when I get the opportunity (like now).
    Religion poisons everything

  • boomSLANG

    Greg wants to know: “I am amazed at how much time you spend criticizing other people’s beliefs. Are you not able to to just ignore them?”

    Yes!!!! ‘Very good question; thanks for asking…..and again, the answer is YES. Just as soon as Theists stop promoting their respective “beliefs” as Universal Truth; just as soon as Theists commit to keeping their respective “personal relationships” with their respective invisible deities in the bedroom; just as soon as Theists stop expecting the unconvinced to be convinced on the same types of evidence on which they readily dismiss other religions; just as soon as Theists stop demonizing any worldview or philosophy on life that disagrees with their own. Until then, no…..we won’t “ignore them”.

  • LRA

    When theists stop proselytizing, I’ll stop criticizing.

  • chouck0411

    No, that’s not quite what I meant. Let me clarify…The passage isn’t nullified after the resurrection but what it does point to is that the rich man was unwilling to give his life away to Christ. Christ’s disciples dropped their nets, promising careers and followed Christ in his 3 years of ministry and later. I was simply saying that that passage was about the cost of following Christ.

  • DarkMatter

    Too bad that is not what the “bible” passage in Matt is saying.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    where was she arrested by soldiers part ?

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    what “big city ” did she travel to?

  • LRA

    I assume that’s a reference to the part when she was lead by the underworld’s guardians after she entered the gates… but I’m not sure as I don’t have time to re-read the whole story/

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    If it werent for religion youd probably be sick and illiterate. And living in a 3rd world country

    Harvard ;
    ” the advancement of all good literature, arts and sciences’ and the
    education of English and Indian Youth ‘in knowledge: and godliness’”

    William and Mary :

    In 1691, the House of Burgesses sent James Blair (the colony’s top
    religious leader and rector of Henrico Parish at Varina) to England to
    secure a charter to establish “a certain Place of Universal Study, a
    perpetual College of Divinity…

    Yale

    Yale was founded in 1701 as a collegiate school in Killingworth,
    Connecticut. In 1716, the school was moved to New Haven and was
    renamed Yale College in 1718 after a donation by Elihu Yale. Like its
    predecessors, Yale was mainly concerned with providing a supply of
    learned ministers.

    Princeton

    Partly to provide a new supply of ministers for the Synod of New York
    and partly in retaliation for Yale’s ultra-traditional approach,

    College of Philadelphia

    In 1749, Ben Franklin envisioned a secular college where young men
    could be trained in both the “practical” skills and the arts. He saw
    this as a “Publick Academy of Philadelphia” and sought support for its
    creation in a pamphlet entitled “Proposals for the Education of Youth
    in Pensilvania.” By 1750, Franklin had appointed a Board of Trustees
    and a building for the school. Classes began in the winter of 1751 and
    the school was formally known as the College of Philadelphia in 1755.
    The Rev. William Smith, Franklin’s appointed provost,,,,(even Franklin
    knew the value of appointing a man of God )

    Columbia

    In 1704, Governor Lewis Morris of New Jersey began laying plans to
    finance a college but it wasn’t until 1754 that King’s College was
    founded in New York City. The college was influenced heavily by the
    College of Philadelphia in its curriculum, providing both a religious
    instruction and a well-rounded instruction in the sciences, language,
    husbandry, logic, math, grammar and other subjects. Although the
    Anglicans founded the college, religious liberty prevailed.

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    1 – 10 of about*** 2,770,000 +++for christian charities – 0.11 sec.

  • LRA

    She traveled to the city of the underworld.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    When anti-theist stop preaching their fantasies and fiction and revisionism , theists will stop calling them on their lies and BS :)

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    So if its just fiction why not ….

    SADDAM HUSSEIN …

    and Jesus both travel to a big city, where they are arrested by soldiers, put on trial, convicted, sentenced to death, stripped of their clothes, tortured, hung up on a stake, and die. And then, after 3 days, they are resurrected from the dead.

    This is closer to the story than Ianna

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    oh no ..the blog author clearly states ” she was arrested by soldiers..

    the blog author clearly states , she went to a big city ..

    the blog author clearly states it was a stake ..not a hook

    DID HE READ THE SUMERIAN STORY ?

    OR JUST MAKE IT UP AS HE WENT ALONG ….

  • LRA

    I think you’re missing the point– the point is that there are hero templates, divine templates, suffering savior templates, etc in ancient mythos tales. That’s because the people of the time didn’t have a sense of “history” like we do. “History” is a modern invention. Their sense of “history” was that time was cyclical and that great leaders fit into already established archetypes.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    In psychology and cognitive science, confirmation bias is a tendency to search for or interpret new information in a way that confirms one’s preconceptions and to avoid information and interpretations which contradict prior beliefs. It is a type of cognitive bias and represents an error of inductive inference, or as a form of selection bias toward confirmation of the hypothesis under study or disconfirmation of an alternative hypothesis.

    Confirmation bias is of interest in the teaching of critical thinking, as the skill is misused if rigorous critical scrutiny is applied only to evidence challenging a preconceived idea but not to evidence supporting it

  • LRA

    Well, you’re talking to the wrong person about confirmation bias. That master’s degree that I mentioned– yeah, it’s in one of the cognitive sciences– neuroscience (I also have a degree in psychology).

    It is hardly confirmation bias to interpret a cultural writing in its *actual* cultural context.

    Duh.

  • LRA

    And I’d like to add that you might be right about the confirmation bias if this was the *only* story that resembled the Christian story, but it’s not. There are MANY many stories that resemble the Christian story, hence Daniel’s use of the word TEMPLATE.

  • LRA

    when theists realize their bible is the most morally relative document there is (rape, murder, slavery anyone?), that the bible is the pinnacle of fantasy and fiction, then I’ll stop calling them on their lies and BS.

  • boomSLANG

    “When anti-theist stop preaching their fantasies and fiction and revisionism , theists will stop calling them on their lies and BS :)”

    If you feel up to the challenge, please explain how asking for evidence from someone who insists that invisible, conscious beings exist, is a “lie”. I am being completely forthright when/if I tell Theists that I cannot believe their respective truth-claims on the very same types of evidence on which they dismiss the next guy’s truth-claims. There’s no “lie” on my part; it’s simply the truth– you’ll need something in the way of objective evidence to convince me. If you call that policy “BS”, then so be it. The fact remains, I’m unconvinced; I see no credible evidence for the existence of invisible, conscious beings, and I sure-as-hell don’t see any evidence that Christians are being guided by any “all-loving” beings.

  • LRA

    You know, Joe, I got my Master’s degree from Columbia. I guarantee you there isn’t a more secular, liberal school than Columbia. It’s great that it was founded in a time when religious thinking was pervasive in the culture, but of course, it was also founded during the ENLIGHTENMENT, also called the age of REASON.

  • http://metroblog.blogspot.com Metro

    Good examples: Got anything from last century?

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Exactly . They think that since some later adherents to Christianity chose to celebrate Christmas on the 25 th although no scripture supports that date , that somehow that negates Jesus entirely in some kinda bizarre retroactive “it dont count now nananana logic “.

    They use fuzzy reasoning and have no logic , and make stuff up . They comb then glean through myths looking for anything remotely similar , then twist it till it fits ….

  • LRA

    Wow. You just called well respected religious scholars lame and illogical.

    I think you two are lame and illogical.

  • LRA

    (To put a fine point on it– Enlightenment thinkers were questioning religion left and right. Many of our founding fathers had turned away from Christianity toward Deism as a manifestation of their doubts. This was the result of EDUCATION and using REASON.)

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Ridiculous

  • LRA

    It has gates and buildings- how is this not a city?

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Oh ? how much does your own conscious weigh ?

    When you say the word “Exist ” i take it you mean like YOU exist?

    Where were you 1o,ooo years ago ? where will you be 1o,ooo years from now ?

    Show me your “existence “.

  • boomSLANG

    Previously, I said:

    “If you feel up to the challenge, please explain how asking for evidence from someone who insists that invisible, conscious beings exist, is a ‘lie’.”

    Unless/unless I hear otherwise, I suppose the following are the intended answers that Joe gives(note, each one a *question*, not an answer)…..

    Joe: “Oh ? how much does your own conscious weigh ?”

    The average human brain weighs about 3 pounds (1.4 kilograms) To my knowledge, there is no scientific substantiation that “consciousness” can exist independently of the human brain.

    Joe: “When you say the word ‘Exist’ i take it you mean like YOU exist?”

    Yes.

    “Where were you 1o,ooo years ago ?”

    Nowhere—the same “place” that you were.

    Joe: “where will you be 1o,ooo years from now ?”

    (see previous answer)

    “Show me your ‘existence’.

    I have a policy that I don’t give my home address out on public forums. I can assure that I exist—but for sake of argument, let’s say that I don’t exist.

    Okay; done……now, how exactly does my non-existence validate the existence of invisible, conscious, creator-beings???

  • boomSLANG

    correction on previous post—should have been “Until/unless”..etc.

    Stupid invisible gremlins!

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Wow ,argumentum ad verecundiam . If some alleged scholar , took common practices of today , and compared them with myths from the past to suggest copy cat of religions , when the religious text does not support the practices of today , its as stupid as this fiction the author called the Ianna story .

  • LRA

    Oh, ok then. You think that Christianity poofed into existence, fully formed and completely original.

    *laughs*

  • LRA

    Oh, and BTW scholars DO look to the past influences of today’s culture. Case in point- we look at the Ancient Greeks as the founders of Western Civilization.

  • LRA

    Oh ok- because you christians *never* exhibit confirmation bias!

    *laughs again*

  • Francesc

    I’m so naïve… i thought for a moment that you were explaining a problem most christians have facing the real world: confirmation bias

    (ok, LRA came first)

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    If you make it up as ya go along and claim “eureka ” we gotta template ” , and the original true story doesnt resemble the contrived manufactured rhetoric

    YOU CAN MAKE ANYTHING FIT , nitwit

  • DarkMatter

    Not true, his existence is 10,000 yrs even from the past. You can’t argue with an ancient man with vast knowledge, experience and loftiness, whereby we only live a generation.

    He knows.

  • Ocean

    Just getting in on this…but I think when people ARE exhibiting confirmation bias, is what is key here. THAT Christians might sometimes do that or anyone, is one thing, but to allude to the fact that they do as a response to ones own confirmation bias is odd to me. It doesn’t “follow”. If you do , you do show confimation bias, and its pretty clear, if you are not, then you are not, and its beside the point.

  • http://avertyoureye.blogspot.com/ Teleprompter

    Well, it’s not like Christianity has two dominant figures, one responsible for good and one responsible for evil, just like earlier traditions…oh wait, it does have that.

    Check all boxes for “Zoroastrianism” on the list.

    **

    The main point from this article, as I understand it, is that there are a lot of historical antecedents for certain elements of the Christian tradition. It certainly is not a monolith, but it is a dynamic shift of belief systems and practices which have contributed to our current religions.

  • DorkMan

    All your talk of templates and who copied who is irrelevant – mythological deity is the operative term and the only thing you said that has any relevance.

    All deities are mythical and imaginary – can you prove otherwise?

  • boomSLANG

    RE:

    “http://joe55a.wordpress.com/2009/04/13/reasonable-faith/”

    Joe: “Evidence is something a corporeal entity thinks a hypothetical incorporeal creator of reality should produce.”

    Yes; accurate in two ways. As you delineate perfectly, a “HYPOTHETICAL incorporeal being”[emphasis mine], and thus, I’ll take this as your admission that any such being remains a “hypothetical”. Agreed.

    *Secondly, I am not, and have not, argued for what any invisible, conscious being (if such a thing exists) “should”, or “should not”, do. I’m saying, **if** said “hypothetical incorporeal being” exists, **and** it requires/desires my worship, then yes, it must first provide me with the evidence that it supposedly *knows* would convince me to become a believer. If it doesn’t care if I believe in, or worship it?….. then yes, it can carry on being the invisible “heart-seeking” deity that its believers insist it is.

    Joe: “A corporeal entity thinks thus that things even concepts ? qualia ? all should fall within the parameters of their own 2 dimensional thinking , expectations .”

    See here*, above…regarding the word “should”.

    Joe: “They[skeptical "corporeal entities"] seek evidence and use terms exist when they themselves can’t provide same of their own”

    If you feel up to it, you can be more specific by what you mean by “same of their own”. Are you talking about evidence for my own existence? If so, again, I refer back to your previous non-sequitur about proving my own existence:

    Joe(previously): “Show me your ‘existence’.”

    Me(previously): “I have a policy that I don’t give my home address out on public forums. I can assure [you] that I exist—but for sake of argument, let’s say that I don’t exist.

    Okay; done……now, how exactly does my non-existence validate the existence of invisible, conscious, creator-beings???”

    Joe: “Your premise is flawed.”

    In fact, it is your “premise” that is “flawed”…..non-sequitur, to be more specific. And I’m not sure why you cannot address my comments here, since you came here to begin with; I didn’t come find you.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a
  • LRA

    Boomslang– Joe won’t admit his defeat here. Of course not. Even so, if he comes back, he can respond to my link to what evidence actually is:

    http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/evidence/

    Christians seem to be confused about it. They think that setting up logical arguments with premises that can’t be proven somehow proves something.

    What does it prove? That they don’t know what evidence is!!!

  • boomSLANG

    RE: the second provided link.

    Dear Joe,

    Feel free to enter your responses right here on this blog, otherwise, you can feel free to pretend you have an upperhand on the discussion elsewhere—I’m fine with it. I simply have no interest in chasing you around the net, ‘K?

    Bye now.

  • LRA

    I’m sorry but ALL christians exhibit confirmation bias. They make many many claims that they then look to see manifest in the world:

    coincidence = miracle

    negative natural phenomena = God’s punishment on a fallen world

    positive natural phenomena = God’s blessing for doing his will (whatever that is???)

    negative personal event = God closing door

    positive personal event = God opening window

    We “know” the bible is true and inerrant = reason to attack science and other philosophies

    Seriously, give me a break!

  • LRA

    Well, now. Joe you’re getting into MY area of expertise: consciousness.

    Philosophy of mind and the cognitive sciences are enormously complicated, so I’m just going to give a small gloss.

    The sciences treat consciousness as an observable phenomenon testable in a wide variety of ways.

    Philosophy of mind considers the basic question: monism or dualism. You are a dualist (presumably) because you think you have a consciousness that will outlive your body (your soul).

    Here is an article from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy on dualism:

    http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/dualism/

    In it, you will find substance (regular dualism — your brand) and substance dualism (a naturalistic approach to dualism).

    Very few philosophers of mind hold to substance (regular) dualism anymore because advances in brain research (specifically ablation studies) have demonstrated that various pieces of your consciousness disappear when we target very specific areas of the brain. Additionally, studies of people with brain injury have demonstrated over and over that if your brain is changed, then WHO YOU ARE changes, too.

    Substance dualism is a new thing proposed by David Chalmers. It basically says that the brain has both physical properties and has phenomenological properties– but that the mind is entirely natural (and is in no way supernatural or spiritual because how do natural substances and spiritual substances interact anyway?)

    Since there are MANY MANY varying theories on monism (as most scholars reject dualism), I can’t possibly post them all here, but all of them reject the notion of a consciousness as separate from brain because there is positive evidence that correlates the two and there is exactly ZERO evidence for a soul.

    So what you are IS your brain, like it or not. Period.

  • LRA

    *Correction!!!* Regular Dualism should be PROPERTY dualism while substance dualism is Chalmers’ theory. Sorry for the mistake.

  • DorkMan

    Thanks for the link LRA I found the discourse fascinating.

    Only in the last few years have I taken an interest in philosophy to try and balance my scientific/technical work and studies.

    I took on an amateur study of philosophy, psychology and biology to see if I had missed something, to learn from people who have thought very deeply on matters, to understand my own consciousness and find a reason why I reject religion.

    I have found nothing in my journey that even remotely swayed me back towards religion – if anything philosophy has strengthened my atheism.

  • LRA

    He wants you to go on his blog because if you defeat him, he can just erase your comments.

  • http://billpost.blogspot.com/ Bill

    No response?

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    Well , I have been busy , so, and its quite personal .

    When I was young I didn’t believe in God until about 19 . Neither of my parents went to church . Although my father later in life became Methodist or maybe always was but I wasnt aware of it . Ive attended Church of the Nazarene and a Methodist Church only on rare occasion.

    This is my great great maybe great grandfather

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Cartwright_(exhorter)

    I believe the Bible . OT and New.

    “”explain to us why your beliefs are right/true?””

    Knowledge is finite , truth is infinite .
    What may or may not be truth now ,is unknown in the future for a man . We can assume it may hold true into to the future , yet it still remains unobserved and unproven absolutely.

    I have a personal relationship with God . God is known to me .

  • LRA

    Bill, I think he’s decided to blog about this on his blog and he wants us to follow. That way, when we argue him into a corner for the bajillionth time, he can erase all of our comments and declare victory!

  • http://billpost.blogspot.com/ Bill

    You may be right.

    I’m constantly disappointed by the lack of substantive response from many of the believers who come here. They clearly have strong strong feelings about the subject, but they rarely want to address it on any substantive level.

    Of course there are exceptions.

  • LRA

    Thanks!

    If you go back to the SEP (the same link from above) there is a search box there and you can put in monism, naturalism, consciousness, functionalism etc. and there are a TON of articles summing up the best philosophical papers for the last how-many-ever years. Also, David Chalmers has an AWESOME website with individual papers on consciousness on it:

    http://consc.net/online

    Again, those are the best thinkers in the field! Enjoy!

    ;)

  • LRA

    Sorry, but I took the bait to respond to another Christian blog, the “Creation Letter Project”. When I argued and provided references for outside reading from reputable sources, the owner of the blog erased my comments and wasted my time. I’ll never trust another Christian blogger again. If you want to engage me, you have to do it here. Daniel only erases comments of very rude people, but never people who disagree.

  • Sock

    Yeah, and that’s why I visit here regularly.

    I -like- reading opinions different than my own. It gives me a greater understanding of the world.

    Though, I have to admit. Lately, the only comment to make me actually think differently was a comment made by, of all people, Steven Colbert.

    His parable about the four blinds guys who fell into a pit with an elephant, and were unable to determine what it was by touching it, but still made claims about what it was (wall, snake, spike, something else, I forget)… and then he said that maybe Jesus is an elephant, and the contradictions about him (how can a wall be a snake!?) are because those who’ve encountered him have only seen a part of him?

    That is something to make me think, something that I’d never considered before.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    I posted three times and it didnt show up . I have debate groups christianvsatheist,that have a mix of atheists and christian moderators . Ive only banned 2 people and only deleted dating site posts .

    I believe wholeheartedly in free speech and if a christian deleted your stuff it was wrong . Try being a christian poster on an atheist run site or group , Ive been moderated into oblivion on every one ive been on , without exception., even rational response .

    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/christianvsatheist/

  • http://metroblog.blogspot.com Metro

    Funny–there’s a reply button right here by your comment. New to teh internets, are we?

    And I think you’re bullshitting. I believe you dropped your comments and links here to troll traffic to your own blog, which pretty well guarantees I ain’t going there.

  • Francesc

    Or maybe -only maybe- no one has ever encountered “Him”, and what they are relating is a mixture of
    1.- Personify desirable feelings -seen in every ancient culture
    2.- Wishful thinking -every human
    3.- Fixing social rules as religious “Tabu” -seen even in apes

    The fact is that we can’t know wether Jesus exists or not. But in the same way as we can’t know wether Santa Claus exists or not. We don’t have any evidence to support his existence, so the rational choose is not to believe.
    (and of course, we can’t know “God’s will” so we can’t impose a crappy moral upon our neighbours)

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    *
    on April 13, 2009 at 6:56 pm LRA <——–

    He wants you to go on his blog because if you defeat him, he can just erase your comments.

    April 14, 2009 at 10:29 am | Reply <——

    It may be that theres a limit to replies to threads . Although ive had a wordpress account for some time i rarely blogged here, so it may just be me . As the two examples show , that I cut and pasted , one has a reply the other does not .

    And I Welcome anyone to post links to similar discussions on my blog .

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    This was a response to this: that didnt reply correctly

    LRA

    Sorry, but I took the bait to respond to another Christian blog, the “Creation Letter Project”. When I argued and provided references for outside reading from reputable sources, the owner of the blog erased my comments and wasted my time. I’ll never trust another Christian blogger again. If you want to engage me, you have to do it here. Daniel only erases comments of very rude people, but never people who disagree.

  • LRA

    And here is my ancestor:

    http://www.uvm.edu/~vhnet/hertour/eallen/eahistory.html

    He was a deist. (I sympathize with him!)

  • LRA

    Well, please notice that Daniel did not erase your comments!!! He’s great about that!

    Yay, Daniel! ;)

  • LRA

    Don’t be silly. I just don’t want to waste my time.

  • http://r.yuwie.com/christianvsatheist/ joe55a

    cool .

    Allen had, before his father’s death, begun studies under a “minister” in the nearby town of Salisbury with the goal of gaining admission to *Yale College Allen’s brother Ira recalled that, even at a young age, Ethan was curious and interested in learning…..wiki

    *Yale traces its beginnings to “An Act for Liberty to Erect a Collegiate School,” passed by the General Court of the Colony of Connecticut on October 9, 1701 in an effort to create an institution to train ministers.

  • LRA

    You know. I took a career test one time. My top three jobs (in order) were: minister (too bad I’m female), teacher/professor (I’m a certified teacher), and writer (which I’m working on!)

    Well, two outta three ain’t bad!

    :)

    Anyhow, I’m a 13th generation American on one side of my family. The first Allen came to Pennsylvania in 1687. On the other side of my family, I’m a first generation American. My mother is from Venezuela. Only in America do we have such wonderful plurality!
    God bless America! (If there is a God!)


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