First, a couple of childhood anecdotes.
When I was very young, my maternal grandparents lived just up the street from us. They were in the habit of stopping by on Sunday morning after Mass.
At the age of about four, I asked my grandmother where she had been, upon her arrival into the kitchen. She said she had just been to church.
I considered this, and then, according to my father (I don’t remember it), asked her if she had just been married.
He tells this story as the prologue to describing the kind of withering, ice-dagger stares she would shoot him sometimes.
The next one comes from my kindergarten year. My mother the psychonaut was driving me home after a day which included one of my first Religious Education classes. I asked her if I had been baptised. She said no and asked me if I wanted to be.
Suffice it to say that Jesus was not a big part of my childhood. In fact, the daughters of my dad’s bestie who we used to holiday with knew more about him than I did. They were Jewish.
This should all serve as a personal preamble to where I want to take this post.
In the funny way of these matters, whilst compiling the information and getting my thoughts in order, a number of things occurred. A few people up in the magical internets posted on the same topic -which basically never happens now that everyone is content to reblog poorly-spelled image memes on a pornography platform. And the topic they happened to post about was Jebus. Here, here and here.
The second thing that happened was that Joe Atwill has a new book and DVD to sell, this one claiming that the Romans invented Jesus as a psy-op to neutralise Jewish resistance in Palestine.
Now… to put it nicely… it’s very, very unlikely this actually happened.
And by that I mean the psy-op. Whilst the ancient world is littered with examples of god-bothering and god-faking for political means, this just isn’t in the playbook for the most powerful organisation on earth at the time, when it comes to managing its colonies. Yes, I get that a lot of his story aligns with campaigns and legends of various members of the Roman elite, but the Nazarene is like a velour dinner jacket in the house of a cat fanatic… brother picks up a lot of crap.
The part about Jesus never physically existing, however, well that deserves closer inspection.
I presume you all listen to Miguel’s podcast, Aeon Byte Gnostic Radio? If not, you should. He’s been absolutely killing it this year. I listen to every episode. He is one of the weekly highlights of my horrible commute. (Along with Ted, who is on sabbatical, and Jason and Andrieh, who thankfully aren’t. You see how we’re all on first name bases even though I’ve only been on one of these shows? The power of audio! Subscribe, kids.)
One of Miguel’s recent episodes was an awesome interview with David Fitzgerald, a Bible scholar who has reached the conclusion that there was no physical person called Jesus of Nazareth. Here it is:
Here is one of David’s presentations from a few years ago. It is mandatory viewing! I cannot stress this enough. It’s quality book learnin’.
Yes, it’s an atheist conference but David appears to be one of those atheists I actually like… cheeky rather than a smug, paedophilia-condoning psychopath, with an Oxbridge education paid for by his family’s slave trade money. (Cheeky atheists are fine. The universe is a Mystery. That makes some of the conclusions we spiritual people reach absurd and that’s okay.)
Thanks to Google Analytics, I know how few of you bastards actually click on the links in these posts, so I’m going to pull out a few of David’s observations as bullet points. This does not, however, let you off the hook for watching it.
- No contemporary person had ever heard of Jesus or even mentions him. Which doesn’t have to necessarily mean anything, except there is evidence of plenty of other crazy prophets -the competition, essentially- kicking around Palestine at the same time.
- Very few things actually line up between the Gospels, and even the stories that purport to are patently rewrites of earlier myths, just with a slightly new cast. (There are some excellent slides on this at 22:15 in the lecture above. But you’ve already seen them by now, right?)
- As an example, it’s fascinating how Mark manages to know taverns in Rome by name but his understanding of Palestinian geography is as good as the girl who has never seen Star Wars describing Star Wars.
Now, I know some little amount about topics that ‘the majority of scholars’ are in agreement about, by Jebus I do. When it comes to subjects that require ‘expert interpretation’, you must tread lightly. Because ‘the majority of scholars’ that think that Jesus was ‘probably a man’ also happen to have attended seminary. This is the tobacco industry declaring cigarettes don’t cause cancer.
It’s exactly the same as ‘the majority of scholars’ who think the Sphinx dates to the Old Kingdom. They probably don’t attend the geology conferences where the evidence of water erosion was unanimously declared.
And it seems to me that Fitzgerald and co. have the exact opposite case that demands to be answered. Where Graham Hancock and Robert Bauval and the rest have irrefutable evidence for something that ‘the majority of scholars’ say never existed, David Fitzgerald has compelling evidence that something that the ‘majority of scholars’ think existed never did.
Jesus perhaps best exemplifies one of those topics where the inertia of vested interests and dead morons has prevented a sober understanding of the topic reaching the layman. So it is perfectly reasonable for an atheist to decide, because there was no physical person called Jesus of Nazareth, that Jesus “never existed.”
Chaos sorcerers, of course, reach the opposite conclusion.
A Jesus that is a Myth in the way that we would understand it not only has more utility, but actually better matches my personal occult experience.
Here’s an awkward confession. I love saints.
Ones that didn’t exist, ones that did, goblin saints… bring it on. And what I’m about to say should not colour your opinion of the macro subject -Jesus’s nonphysical existence- because it is just stuff inside my head.
I love the saints, I work with a few of them, but a number of things trouble me.
- How they became saints. ie the phenomenally wealthy king of the paedophiles said they were saints and so they were.
- Their personal views of the universe which are not only largely bullshit, but often racist, sexist, certainly homophobic and militantly extreme.
Previously, I had to go ‘classic chaos’ for saint work; I’m talking proper belief shifting. The Celtic and Gaelic ones not so much, but they’re largely fairies and pagan gods. However, the very strong hypothesis that Jesus wasn’t a person but a current, but a myth, really fits with my neo-Magonian, quantum panpsychim worldview. (Neo-Magonian is now a word. Use it.)
In the case of the saints, it allows for them to have genuine contact with this current and be transformed by it, not because of the imperial milieu they are working in, but despite it. When RO talks about aligning Jesus with the Logos in a neo-Platonic sense, he’s completely correct, of course… because he is tapping into the original Mystery context of the entity. But it’s possible that there is no need for the alignment in the first place. Jesus is that. Dispense with the beardy creature in the meatsuit (he only acquired the beard a few centuries after ‘his death’, when his iconography stopped stealing from Apollo-as-child and aimed for Zeus), and go for the current.
More ghosts of empire
It strikes me that the reasonable assertion that Jesus never physically existed is a good way to de-bullshit and de-paedo saint work. Seems to me, it also repositions this kind of activity with the other Christianish streams running through the classical world; they all become relativised, rather than one being ‘dominant’ and the others being ‘alternative’. I’m talking about Gnosticism. Here’s a quote from the good Mr Knowles:
It doesn’t take an Elaine Pagels to figure out who Yaldabaoth is. The more cultivated and learned practitioners of Gnosticism were horrified by the reductionist simplicity of the more conventional Christian sects. Another Gnostic text, the Hypostasis of the Archons (the Archons made an appearance in the original Star Trek series, which we discussed in an earlier AstroGnostic post) elaborates on the nature of this threefold god:
“Opening his eyes he saw a vast quantity of matter without limit; and he became arrogant, saying, `It is I who am God, and there is none other apart from me.’
“When he said this, he sinned against the entirety. And a voice came forth from above the realm of absolute power, saying, `You are mistaken, Samael’ – which is, ‘god of the blind.’”
The role of the Messiah or Christ in Gnostic theology is also somewhat different than that in orthodox Christianity. The condemned state of humanity is to live in ignorance of its divine essence, and the role of Christ is to awaken the human soul to its true nature. This is a more purely spiritual and speculative view of Christ, as opposed to the orthodox view which was primarily concerned with instilling obedience (‘faith’ in religious terminology is a synonym for “obedience”) and offering hopes of the salvation of the human soul from the fires of Hell.
Obedience, paedophilia, obscene wealth and Nazis in dresses. Guess that’s what happens when you turn a Mystery Cult into a religion of control for the masses, huh? (Returning to Joe Atwill’s theory that Christianity was an imperial plot. He’s right in one sense, but I’m of the opinion he’s mistaking the empire for The Empire.)
From The Heretic magazine:
But what defined this Christian paradigm? To a large extent it was defined by the Christian heresiologist, Irenaeus, who in the second century AD cast out dozens of authentic early Christian writings and crafted a story to his liking that focused on only four gospels. Proponents of the ideas supported by other gospels, such as the Manichaeans and the Gnostics, were branded as heretics.
Christianity became reduced and standardised, and much was lost in the process. The role of Irenaeus was to craft an ideological compartment, into which all the offending ideas, and the expositors of those ideas, could be relegated and eliminated. He attempted to redefine the narrative of what was true and not true, and scholars of Gnosticism have shown that he did so with fairly devious rhetorical games, imputing things to the Gnostics that weren’t actually true. (It is ironic and revealing that Maya scholar, Anthony Aveni, in a New York Times interview, has taken up Irenaeus’s charge against ‘the Gnostics’ and in so doing he judges me to be a modern Gnostic!) Irenaeus was not in service to the truth; he was an architect of a kind of Christianity that would actually come to force people into accessing the godhead through a newly-defined Jesus. He crafted an ideological funnel for people’s free experience of their higher power and vision. Only through his Holy Church could the so-called ‘truth’ then be found.
Anyone who has taken more than a single step on a spiritual path has reached the conclusion that the world’s understanding of Jesus has been well and truly hijacked by the empire that never ends. One is then forced to split out the parts that are acceptable, the parts you like, and dispense with the rest.
I have certainly done this. I liked his economic and political position; chasing the money lenders out of the temple, hanging out with whores and tax collectors, and so on. So ‘the man’ was acceptable to me, and I would come to terms with his magical powers by viewing ‘the man’ as a Rishi or whatever. But, as Fitzgerald points out, literally every facet of Jesus’s life can be traced back to earlier myths. So the things I like aren’t attached to some random Jewish terrorist, but to a Myth… where I can swallow it whole and have it change me.
Who knew this stuff about Jesus not physically existing prior to the modern age? Some gnostic schools, sure. The Templars? Maybe. High ranking paedos perpetuating the Noble Lie? A bunch of people swear that’s the case.
Who else? Well, I can’t help thinking about the Bogomil and other Gnostic connections to the origins of Western European witchcraft explored in Serpent Songs… and a comment that Scylla left on the previous post, quoting Aradia, Gospel of The Witches:
My take is that no one was paying attention if/when they read Aradia – “Your God, Jesus and Mary are three devils!” – this is said by witches trained by the daughter of a Pagan Goddess and Lucifer himself.
They are devils! They are tricks, they are traps laid on the path that leads from you back to your Source. Of course, if you approach them with the awareness that their outer manifestation is an imperial control mechanism, then you stand a chance of not dashing your psychic ship on the rocks.
But that Aradian phrasing resonated with me… I think the connections between Christianity’s Mystery cult going underground and the emergence of the witch cult really need to be examined in more detail by more people.
The whole thing does, frankly. I’m annoyed at myself because I know better than to accept the opinion of ‘the majority of scholars’. Psi effects, Atlantis, Ancient Egypt… better to dig for actual facts and then watch the tenured opinions of ‘the majority of scholars’ wither in the harsh light of evidence. This one slipped through the net. But applying the same standard of facts and opinion withering, there appear to be no facts for Jesus’s physical existence. We can wither Jesus’s beard with the light of lack-of-fact, like a Nazi’s face in Raider of the Lost Ark.
One final thing sticks in my mind about this matter… which I will certainly investigate further. And that’s the Remote Viewing account of Jesus and the crucifixion by Joe McMoneagle. Read it with the perspective that he never physically existed and his words actually make more sense.
Joe: There seems like there is a missing piece here too, and I’m trying to grasp it. Hold on a second. Let me…
Joe: He, ah…. he was very ah… evidently he had a far greater deal of…. a far greater number of people followed him as opposed to what’s known or available in the historical record. He ah… he didn’t spend time detailing his ideals or anything to like… student type of people. But he did take the more brilliant people he became involved with and ah… and instructed them in the philosophic side of the ideal. He secretly made them understand the necessity for the interaction. They, in turn, with that single key, spread the information as well. It was if it was all hinged on a single precept. I think the historical record is a compilation of not only the information from this man called Jesus, but… an awful lot of what was credited to him that was provided by or taught by others based on a like premise, and included as well.
Bob: Of what sense can you make of his death then?
Joe: Ah… have to create a place… or a… you have to create a parameter in which the higher experience can be experienced, in order to develop information based solely on the higher experience. Ah… it’s kind of like… I’m trying to figure out a way of translating… of putting it… but I’m really having trouble doing this. Ah, it’s like a… man, until that point, or interaction between men created a form of learning or a form of information that was called learning, and this form of learning had become stagnated. It needed a kick in the pants, in order to progress to the next level. So… the reason for his… his actions, were to… initiate a question or a… a questioning that would grow as a blossom in the minds of men and women. It’s sort of like promulgating a new… a totally new experience, or a new experiential type of thing that men would come to know, that would cause them to participate or interact on a higher level of what man was really supposed to be.
Joe: I’m trying to… I’m trying… be very… it’s kind of like, ah… man at the time was like two kids on the street corner. And their interaction at first is a discussion on who has the prettiest models or the best looking bike, or I bet I can jump out of that limb in the tree and you can’t, etc… That… that form of interaction was producing a truth or information of a certain level. So then, these two boys are met by a man, and the man says, have you ever wondered where that tree came from, or how it might have grown? And the boys find that in the next day they are discussing the more esoteric nature of the tree, or the possible manufacturer of the bicycle, or how marbles are made – it kind of like shoved them up to the next level of understanding, of curiosity. The interaction between them produces a truth that’s a tenfold higher step than who has the largest bag of marbles – that kind of effect.
Joe: I feel a need… I just want to say one thing here. In the course or history of humanity this manifestation, this being called Christ… that was one way of doing this… doing it. There are many ways of doing this… doing it.
Okay so… what does this sound like to you, now? A ‘lot more followers’ would be consistent with a non-physical being effectively entangling via channelling or whatever. As for his death, Joe’s account doesn’t actually say it happened, but rather that it was to create a way for higher mysteries to be experienced. I imagine if you remote viewed Osiris’s death you’d get the same response.
Yes, RV evidence without feedback isn’t evidence, so make of that what you will, but ‘lack of evidence’ seems to be going around. What I am saying is… Watch David Fitzgerald’s presentation then take the ghost of Raptor Jesus out for a ride. See if a non-physical entity works better for you like it does for me.
One final personal note… I am hitting publish on this post from Holy Island, looking out over the choppy, slate-grey Irish Sea. I don’t know why, but for some reason, this feels particularly resonant. Today, I woke a dragon, explored a ruined castle by the ocean, bathed in the holy well of a Celtic Saint and declared Jesus never existed.
Because I’m on holiday, yo. Holiday. Holy Day.