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  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nyx View Post
    As in going in the wrong/loony direction or hitting on truth/something significant?
    Well concerning the relationship between Christianity and certain esoteric traditions, it has gone in the wrong direction a bit.

  2. #12
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    I did not realize there was SO much literature about this subject out there

    There are so many scholarly works I found refuting and discrediting historical Jesus.

    I found this website :POCM Pagan Origins of the Christ Myth > POCM > Christianity is another ancient Pagan religion.

    Though there have been countless books written refuting these claims like :

    Jesus Legend, The: A Case for the Historical Reliability of the Synoptic Jesus Tradition

    Gregory Boyd, Paul Eddy

    The Son of God: The Origin of Christology and the History of Jewish-Hellenistic Religion

    Martin Hengel


    NT Wright and Richard Bauckham also have many compelling pro- historical Jesus books. I have noticed most of the people pushing the pagan stuff in my faith are atheists and scholars who assert this are commonly atheists as well.

    I think in the end Christian scholars defend Jesus and non-believers promote the pagan idea. Everyone has their own agenda but the problem is that this material is so complex and the scholars on both sides, erudite, it makes it hard for me to find the truth. The big question is God or no God? I believe in God, so I am in favor of the compelling evidence for historical Jesus.

    The whole pagan thing is based off suppression of these purported earlier Christian-pagans. That they were the origin Christians but in the third century they were suppressed and there teachings turned from esoteric to exoteric for the slow-witted masses... as a means of control, I am guessing is the argument. I think must of this has been refuted thoroughly though. Aaah so confusing.

    I have much studying to do.

  3. #13
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    Did you happen to read this by any chance?
    Was the New Testament Influenced by Pagan Religions by Ronald Nash, a Biblical scholar.

    Another piece by the same author on a similar topic: Was the New Testament influenced by Pagan philosophy?.


    Scholars have noted that the influence flowed both ways, so even Christianity influenced the pagan religions as well.

  4. #14
    Senior Member Synapse's Avatar
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    I am a fence sitter Stepho, while I find this whole topic fascinating I am a misfit. I start classic threads like Why Women Need The Goddess, Peguy should know the reference to that. Curiosity and mischief are good qualities to have for then you question the status quo and why this was established in the first place, in other words I'm unable to give good advice since this area interests me to some extent yet in others less so.

    You can always try to read many ideas, I tried and learned stuff but I don't know what. Internet Sacred Text Archive Home has interesting reading.

    I suppose faith is wonderful so long you have self belief too.
    I disagree with too much to accept much.
    faith is like a road, when you are on it you live by it, when you are off it you live by something or other.

    [youtube="oQu1TBIMSSk"]We're All Going to Hell[/youtube]
    hahaha I just found a video, I think I'm in love.

    Esoteric ideas are misguided, intellectuals converge to them because they become disillusioned with religious ideas and want to secure their insecurity in faith that has a basis of belief in what most resonates with their ability to comprehend what manifests in the inner and outer reality. which to me is akin to wanting to belong to something that has been well traveled, that we aren't alone. whether being well traveled resonates as the absolute truth or a universal escapade into dimensions that are different to what constituted ideology in any essence. a need to find security in the self and in what may come beyond this reality as an anchor, a foundation to existence. and each existence is hinged upon the acceptance of what traditional and non traditional view extrapolates from the core values that most resonate and in doing so manipulate the essence to believe something that is in existence can inherently be that which reality deems beyond comprehension. would limited thoughts and black and white thinking play into the conglomeration of ideas, most certainly. like a sales pitch vying to integrate into their mythos the established worldview and belief and you interpret that according to how you wish. In the end there is some truth in everything, but not enough to entice me to belief. I acknowledge the extraordinary history that pervades humanity. Yet is this a rich history full of wonder and achievement I sometimes wonder, it is an achievement certainly. As to the detail I remain undecided.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    Did you happen to read this by any chance?
    Was the New Testament Influenced by Pagan Religions by Ronald Nash, a Biblical scholar.

    Another piece by the same author on a similar topic: Was the New Testament influenced by Pagan philosophy?.


    Scholars have noted that the influence flowed both ways, so even Christianity influenced the pagan religions as well.
    I have not read that, but this is exactly along the lines of other things I am reading right now. I am not sure how to take it. As long as this does not undermine Jesus as the Savior ,or God, I can accept Catholicism. And I want to...it is so beautiful.

    Do you think this pagan connection undermines Christianity?

    Quote Originally Posted by Synapse View Post
    I am a fence sitter Stepho, while I find this whole topic fascinating I am a misfit. I start classic threads like Why Women Need The Goddess, Peguy should know the reference to that. Curiosity and mischief are good qualities to have for then you question the status quo and why this was established in the first place, in other words I'm unable to give good advice since this area interests me to some extent yet in others less so.

    You can always try to read many ideas, I tried and learned stuff but I don't know what. Internet Sacred Text Archive Home has interesting reading.

    I suppose faith is wonderful so long you have self belief too.
    I disagree with too much to accept much.
    faith is like a road, when you are on it you live by it, when you are off it you live by something or other.

    [youtube="oQu1TBIMSSk"]We're All Going to Hell[/youtube]
    hahaha I just found a video, I think I'm in love.

    Esoteric ideas are misguided, intellectuals converge to them because they become disillusioned with religious ideas and want to secure their insecurity in faith that has a basis of belief in what most resonates with their ability to comprehend what manifests in the inner and outer reality. which to me is akin to wanting to belong to something that has been well traveled, that we aren't alone. whether being well traveled resonates as the absolute truth or a universal escapade into dimensions that are different to what constituted ideology in any essence. a need to find security in the self and in what may come beyond this reality as an anchor, a foundation to existence. and each existence is hinged upon the acceptance of what traditional and non traditional view extrapolates from the core values that most resonate and in doing so manipulate the essence to believe something that is in existence can inherently be that which reality deems beyond comprehension. would limited thoughts and black and white thinking play into the conglomeration of ideas, most certainly. like a sales pitch vying to integrate into their mythos the established worldview and belief and you interpret that according to how you wish. In the end there is some truth in everything, but not enough to entice me to belief. I acknowledge the extraordinary history that pervades humanity. Yet is this a rich history full of wonder and achievement I sometimes wonder, it is an achievement certainly. As to the detail I remain undecided.
    I think you are right on about the esoteric stuff, I have come to similar conclusions myself. The systems are very complex and convoluted in logic, it is amazing what the human mind can distort from, perhaps, what is a kernel of truth.

    I just found this which was very enlightening: JESUS CHRIST, THE BEARER OF THE WATER OF LIFE
    Pontifical Council for Culture & Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue


    This is an overview of the New Age movement which brought about this renewed interest in "gnosis" and esotericism. Everything stated therein lines up perfectly within everything I have learned about it. Initially I was very interested in esotericism when I started my spiritual quest, but ultimately rejected to have any real truth. Of course, from their perspective, I am just a lump of flesh without the capabilities to be initiated. Ah, well. If that's true I have unlimited life times to learn my lesson!

    This subject is very interesting and very strange...what does this whole idea of esotericism in relation to government say about us? How did these beliefs come about? Personally, I feel like it is a sign of the times (end times that is) that humanity is trying to move toward merging all of its respective beliefs together to achieve gnosis. This is the exact opposite of what Christianity teaches. I don't think the occult is necessarily Luciferian in teachings (and most people are so vague with their beliefs that they are not worshiping knowledge), but taken to an extreme it most definitely is: the worship of knowledge...elevating the Self to God. The Pontifical document talks about this preoccupation with the Self.

    and this:HUMANUM GENUS (On Freemasonry)
    Pope Leo XIII


    Freemasonry is definitely the enemy of Catholicism, and is the root of the modern interest in western esotericism. Some extreme Christians argue that the Vatican actually controls them and everything else. The same people say John Paul II was the Antichrist because of his "twisted" cross staff thing ...its the Whore of Babylon etc etc



    Yeah, I think that's s bit far-fetched.

    I am disturbed by this though:

    In God's Name: An Investigation Into the Murder of Pope John Paul I

    The Vatican seems like it is hiding something and corrupt, but I honestly am unable to make a valid judgment. There is war going on Catholicism against everything else. Our current culture is in direct opposition to its teachings. I did not realize how much Anti-Catholicism and blatantly false propaganda is out there. I do not understand why. I am trying to find reliable information about it.




    btw Synapse, that video is catchy!

  6. #16
    Sniffles
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nyx View Post
    I have not read that, but this is exactly along the lines of other things I am reading right now. I am not sure how to take it. As long as this does not undermine Jesus as the Savior ,or God, I can accept Catholicism. And I want to...it is so beautiful.

    Do you think this pagan connection undermines Christianity?
    No it doesn't. As GK Chesterton put it wonderfully, being Christian doesn't mean you stop being human.

  7. #17
    Twerking & Lurking ayoitsStepho's Avatar
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    Sorry it took me so long to reply. Some of this stuff, when it gets into history and such really confusses me so I tend to veer off. But I'm going to try and reply the best I can

    Quote Originally Posted by Nyx View Post
    Well, what are your opinions of infallibility of the Bible? From what you are saying, that is crucial to your faith. What can back this up so it is possible to be confident with your faith? I have done my own research into this and am currently awaiting the arrival of my books about this subject. I am fascinated by this subject. Jesus's teachings are revolutionary and perfect... but what about the rest of the bible? What about the interpretation of Jesus as Savior? The apostles were the ones proclaiming this, but I do not think Jesus ever out right said "I am the Savior." He did proclaim he was the Son of God and The Way, The Truth, and The Life, however.
    I personally, see the Bible as being completely God-breathed, true. I realise alot of people think that the true meaning of the bible has been lost in translation, but I honestly don't believe that to be. I found a link that I think would be interesting to read through here. That right there will explain my points of proving the bible to be true. But in the end of it all, its about faith. I do realise that alot of people dont like that because they want solid proof right here. I can understand that. But really, christianity is faith in Jesus Christ. Thats what it is. Its believe the bible is true and that God, overall, is love.

    What about the interpretation of Jesus as Savior? The apostles were the ones proclaiming this, but I do not think Jesus ever out right said "I am the Savior." He did proclaim he was the Son of God and The Way, The Truth, and The Life, however
    Well, the way I see it is that no other human being on earth has ever been The Way, The Truth, and The Light, nor have they out right said they were like Jesus did. See, Jesus is saying He IS the truth, He IS the light and that He IS the way. If you think about it and agree, if there was no Jesus, would there be a way, a truh, or a light if thats who Jesus is? I mean, just from my thinking process, if his disciples kept telling everyone that He is that Savior, [and if he's the son of God, the light, the truth and the way], wouldn't Jesus have out right told his diciples to knock it off if he wasn't? If he's the truth, why would he alow his disciples to lie to all the nations of people? Thats just a personal thought there.

    I am slightly uncomfortable when people quote the bible when trying to back up what they were saying. Is faith alone that it was divinely inspired? I do not know because I have so much to learn about the Church and Christianity before I decide to place my trust in Jesus.
    I don't know about others, but I only quote the bible so people can look it up themselves if they question what im saying to be true. Alot of people just talk about whats in the bible without even reading it, they make judgements and claims when their eyes have never even read a single word of it. So for myself I quote it so the others have something to use as preference if they want to look back at it. I dont wanna say "oh the bible says this", and never be able to pin point where its at.
    In all honesty, we're all still learning about Jesus and the Church and Christianity. We're always learning, I know I am. I can tell you the truth, I've never regretted accepting Jesus Christ as my savior the more and more I learn about him. Never. In fact, it makes me so relieved that He calls me His and I love learning more about him. I think alot of people get this idea that christians are hypocrites and we're all judgemental and not in tune with reality [im sure some are] but thats not what Jesus calls us to be. If anyone is doing those things in Jesus name, they're going against everything Jesus taught about loving eachother and putting others before ourselves.
    Honestly, Jesus and God put a calmness in my heart and allows me to open my eyes to whats true. He allows me to love when I know I'd want to hate. It all boils down to this. Love God, love others, love yourself. Thats it. Thats the whole point of who God is.

    I would love to hear your perspective on faith if you care to share.
    I enjoy sharing. I hope that nothing I've said has come across as offensive because that is deffinatley not the way it should be taken. [I always have to say that JUST in case i've said something stupid]
    Quote Originally Posted by MacGuffin View Post
    ayoitsStepho is becoming someone else. Actually her true self, a rite of passage.

  8. #18
    Senior Member Synapse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    Did you happen to read this by any chance?
    Was the New Testament Influenced by Pagan Religions by Ronald Nash, a Biblical scholar.

    Scholars have noted that the influence flowed both ways, so even Christianity influenced the pagan religions as well.
    That sounds about right, influences are interchangeable easily.

    What I find wrong is the assumptions on both sides, Christianity makes leaps of faith as they say on issues while turning a blind eye to others. While the same can be said of Pagan ideology. It is in the way ideas are formulated around the words that are transmitted, the translation to popular culture and the influences that these ideas generate that creates dissonance. As my lecturer once said we don't know what our true past is, it is a time line of ideas that we exist in. Who can say that this was not so millions of years ago, any tangible evidence would turn to dust either way. Patterns are a recurring theme and I like finding them by acquainting myself with as many different thoughts as possible and Christianity is one of them.

    What is good about you is the breadth of knowing your subject matter and reaching into the detail that you find as relevant and that you can draw upon to share with others who want to understand your perspective. And having that kind of passion definitely is good to have. For then you are expressing your authentic self outwardly. In many ways I've been afraid to express my ideas lest they be offensive. And that is the point, who cares, haha, we all find the truth in what we need to sustain our essence in this time frame and to suppress what itch we have festers without understanding. This is something I'm learning, I forgot how to ask and that is crucial in the learning process and whether or not anyone wants to answer or gets annoyed is irrelevant to the personal development in understanding the issues that most need addressing to be comfortable in ones own skin I'd say.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nyx View Post
    Do you think this pagan connection undermines Christianity?

    I think you are right on about the esoteric stuff, I have come to similar conclusions myself. The systems are very complex and convoluted in logic, it is amazing what the human mind can distort from, perhaps, what is a kernel of truth.

    I just found this which was very enlightening: JESUS CHRIST, THE BEARER OF THE WATER OF LIFE
    Pontifical Council for Culture & Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue


    This is an overview of the New Age movement which brought about this renewed interest in "gnosis" and esotericism. Everything stated therein lines up perfectly within everything I have learned about it. Initially I was very interested in esotericism when I started my spiritual quest, but ultimately rejected to have any real truth. Of course, from their perspective, I am just a lump of flesh without the capabilities to be initiated. Ah, well. If that's true I have unlimited life times to learn my lesson!

    This subject is very interesting and very strange...what does this whole idea of esotericism in relation to government say about us? How did these beliefs come about? Personally, I feel like it is a sign of the times (end times that is) that humanity is trying to move toward merging all of its respective beliefs together to achieve gnosis. This is the exact opposite of what Christianity teaches. I don't think the occult is necessarily Luciferian in teachings (and most people are so vague with their beliefs that they are not worshiping knowledge), but taken to an extreme it most definitely is: the worship of knowledge...elevating the Self to God. The Pontifical document talks about this preoccupation with the Self.

    btw Synapse, that video is catchy!
    Thanks, a classic video.

    I tend to agree with your sentiments. This topic sparked my interest I had in the subject that I put on the backburner for awhile. Best fit to what resonates is the way to go. What you can be proud of to consider as a representation of your reality is good. I've always thought that New Age is a rehash of old thoughts and should be called Old Age Revived or something lol. Either way it is another perspective that adds to the tapestry that creates the sub personalities of the movements that proliferate.

    Personally I find understanding as many different spiritual and religious interpretations beneficial to the whole understanding of what it means to be. I find that if people, and this is just me focus on singular perspectives then they are limiting themselves and blocking out perspectives outside of their beliefs. This is fine so long as people understand that there are millions of people that worship and believe in ideology that is different. And that difference needs to be questioned, as to why exactly are there so many different perspectives alluding to a similar yet dissimilar system of function. Is this basis like a typological construct in religions and spiritual functionality that piques an interest for certain persons more than others. Its like we are speaking in tongues through what is meant to be uniform and causes incredible politics, division and opposition rather than being universally acceptable.

    Quote Originally Posted by ayoitsStepho View Post
    I personally, see the Bible as being completely God-breathed, true. I realise alot of people think that the true meaning of the bible has been lost in translation, but I honestly don't believe that to be.

    Well, the way I see it is that no other human being on earth has ever been The Way, The Truth, and The Light, nor have they out right said they were like Jesus did. See, Jesus is saying He IS the truth, He IS the light and that He IS the way. If you think about it and agree, if there was no Jesus, would there be a way, a truh, or a light if thats who Jesus is?

    Honestly, Jesus and God put a calmness in my heart and allows me to open my eyes to whats true. He allows me to love when I know I'd want to hate. It all boils down to this. Love God, love others, love yourself. Thats it. Thats the whole point of who God is.

    I enjoy sharing. I hope that nothing I've said has come across as offensive because that is deffinatley not the way it should be taken. [I always have to say that JUST in case i've said something stupid]
    I enjoy listening by the way. The true beauty behind each individual is their passion for their specific subject matter, so it is without a doubt that is what will give you clout for being yourself. Life is a learning curve and it is with each person that we learn something new by questing, questioning and discovering pieces of truth wherever they may be.

    "Not only is the Bible historically accurate, but when it deals with scientific subjects, it is also reliable. This is one of the reasons the Bible can be accepted as a trustworthy document that should be taken literally. Although it was not written as a textbook on history, science, mathematics or medicine, when the writers of Scripture touch on these subjects, they were inspired by God not to make mistakes, but to write what was true—sometimes stating facts that scientific advancement would not reveal or even consider for thousands of years. "

    However I'm astonished reading paragraphs like those, the literally bit is a worry.

  9. #19
    Twerking & Lurking ayoitsStepho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Synapse View Post
    I enjoy listening by the way. The true beauty behind each individual is their passion for their specific subject matter, so it is without a doubt that is what will give you clout for being yourself. Life is a learning curve and it is with each person that we learn something new by questing, questioning and discovering pieces of truth wherever they may be.
    I totally agree with you. Everybody has a story as to why their at the place their at. I'm fascinated with the history of each individual because it allows me to see THEM. People in general interest me, so to hear what people believe is something I enjoy as well

    "Not only is the Bible historically accurate, but when it deals with scientific subjects, it is also reliable. This is one of the reasons the Bible can be accepted as a trustworthy document that should be taken literally. Although it was not written as a textbook on history, science, mathematics or medicine, when the writers of Scripture touch on these subjects, they were inspired by God not to make mistakes, but to write what was true—sometimes stating facts that scientific advancement would not reveal or even consider for thousands of years. "

    However I'm astonished reading paragraphs like those, the literally bit is a worry.
    In what way does this worry you?
    Quote Originally Posted by MacGuffin View Post
    ayoitsStepho is becoming someone else. Actually her true self, a rite of passage.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by ayoitsStepho View Post
    I totally agree with you. Everybody has a story as to why their at the place their at. I'm fascinated with the history of each individual because it allows me to see THEM. People in general interest me, so to hear what people believe is something I enjoy as well

    In what way does this worry you?
    Yep, its people who make the world go round, the experiences and backgrounds to how each person comes to the ideas they do interests me too.

    You know if you take the Bible literally then where would people be?
    For instance

    "If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life maimed, rather than having two hands, to go to hell, into the fire that shall never be quenched." (Mark 9:43)

    Are you then going to self-mutilate if your eyes or hands sinned? Of course not, wouldn't that be better said as some parts literal while others figuratively speaking? The entire statement is a bit sus if you ask me.

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