Initiation into the Mysteries

Initiation into the Mysteries December 6, 2014

Jim Spinti drew attention to a new book by Jan Bremmer, Initiation into the Mysteries of the Ancient World, published by De Gruyter and open access in ebook form. The books discusses the problems with the categories encountered in nineteenth century scholarship (which continues to be used by mythicists today), and covers topics such as whether these cults influenced Christianity.

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  • All mysteries appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to Real® Mysteries, Christian or otherwise, is purely coincidental.

    […] they perform their ritual, and persuade not only individuals, but whole cities, that expiations and atonements for sin may be made by sacrifices and amusements which fill a vacant hour, and are equally at the service of the living and the dead; the latter sort they call mysteries, and they redeem us from the pains of hell, but if we neglect them no one knows what awaits us.

    Plato (4th century BCE) The Republic. Book II.
    classics.mit.edu/Plato/republic.html