Motives for Literalization of Christianity
Why did people embrace childish lower-level Christianity?
People were starting to shy away from some of the painful truths revealed in the mysteries. They had mixed feelings about being mere puppets of gods/fates. They wanted to be individuals, genuine moral agents, sovereigns, culpable for their guilt, liable to praise and blame, subject to heaven or hell on conventional moral grounds.
Given the choice between accepting a deterministic heaven or being subject to freewillist hell, they chose to be a moral agent subject to freewillist hell. The scriptures offered a choice between supernaturalist Literalism that takes pseudo-history as reality, and allegorical myth that reveals determinism -- most people chose to stay in the supernaturalist reading.
If true salvation offers so little -- to become a deterministic slave of Christ and only experience a kingdom of heaven during life, rather than a freewill demon hoping for a blissful eternity in heaven after life, people chose the magic, supernaturalist type of salvation, even if it meant rejecting the revealed mystery of determinism and the immediate presence of the kingdom of God, such as it is, which is not much indeed.
We see this plainly in New Age spirituality -- given the choice between endless mystery and finite revealing, people choose endless mystery. If some Michael, Captain of the Deterministic Angels were to actually do as the New Testament prophecies and reveal the Christian mystery of God's kingdom, and this kingdom turns out to be entheogenic Christ-myth determinism, and "eternal" life is experienced only during this life, most people would plug their ears.
What use is a mere revelation of the metaphysical truth about moral agency, especially when such a revelation robs us of infinitely open possibilities and puts strict limitations on the types of freedom we can have? This is the already famous red pill versus blue pill choice from the movie The Matrix: would you rather slumber in often- comfortable fantasy or awaken to often-uncomfortable truth? Do you want the bliss of fantastic, uncritical, wishful thinking, or the sober intellectual satisfaction of high rational integrity?
If you could resolve your metaphysical intellectual discomfort by waking up to deterministic consistency, would you want to?
If God's kingdom is deterministic, we don't want it. It is no wonder the quantum physicists rejected (by fiat) finite, hidden-variables determinism and insisted on the endless magic of Copenhagenism instead. It is no wonder people chose the psychologically open-ended Literalist reading of Christianity rather than moving on to let the mystery of the deterministic kingdom of God be revealed.
As the initiated determinist Greek adults loved the uninitiated freewillist children (I suppose), so does the mind love its childish freewillist mental model, even to the point of a regressive rejection of adulthood, rejecting the overbearing deterministic kingship of God- Fate.
Why was the false Literalist story of Christian origins supported by the ruling elites, but other, gnostic, esoteric story vigorously suppressed? To maximize the elites' degree of coercive control over the widest population; to try a little to justify their tithing scam - - the other story overthrows the financial, political, cultural domination of the elites.
Even more generally: why does the official (false) literalist *type* of history help the ruling elite? Why does the (true) gnostic/esoteric *type* of history hurt the ruling elite? Why (in the beginning and later) was literalist false history beneficial to the ruling elite, and why was the gnostic true history harmful to the ruling elite?
o How has the ruling elite benefitted by Literalist false history?
o How would the ruling elite not have benefitted had the gnostic true history been admitted or promoted?
o Are there some types of Literalist false history that would have harmed the ruling elite?
o Are there some types of gnostic true history that would have benefitted the ruling elite?
*Must* the ruling elite promote the kind of Literalist false history it did?
Do things *necessarily* group as follows? Why do things necessarily group as follows?
o Literalist false history, the dominance of the ruling elites (oligarchic)
o Gnostic true history, the non-dominance of the ruling elites (democratic)
o Why do literalist false history and oppressive oligarchy go hand in hand?
o Why do gnostic true history and democracy go hand in hand?
Loyalty of the led and controlled -- the coerced -- by those who desire to be the leaders and controllers -- the coercers -- is a main concern of the coercers. In politics the whole problem was how to coerce people into supporting you.
Gnostic esoteric Christianity as such didn't provide an opportunity for coercers to insert themselves and organize people into an organized body of the coerced -- literalist Christianity, with its false history of Jesus handing exclusive authority to Peter then to the bishops/popes, did provide such an opportunity to systematically coerce people into an organized, powerful social-political-religious force.
Why does literalism offer political power that gnostic esotericism doesn't? Because of the networked mass unity of the form of religion, and exclusive concentration of power at the top of a hierarchy. What rulers want is widespread uniformity of system, throughout the social-political-religious culture, and exclusive concentration of power and authority at the top of a hierarchy.
Literalist false history enabled such networked uniformity and such oligarchic, systematically coercive power concentration. Gnostic esoteric Christianity, because of its democratic distribution of authority and proliferation of variations -- each community creating their own largely isolated version of the religion -- was useless at setting up networked uniformity, and was useless for the exclusive hierarchical concentration of power.
The Literalist story we know is exclusive… would others be too?
o Does gnostic esoteric religion/history necessarily support democracy?
o Does literalist religion/history necessarily support oligarchy?
o Does democracy necesarily favor gnostic esoteric religion/history?
o Does oligarchy necessarily favor literalist religion/history?
Why is there such a tight, dualistic grouping into literalism/oligarchy and gnosticism/democracy?
In what ways was history necessarily falsified? Given the interests of the ruling elite, looking upon gnostic true history, why would they say "gnostic true history is hurtful to us, so let us create a false history that is helpful to us."
Problems with gnostic true history, for the early and later ruling elite:
o Fragmented disparate camps, impotent, nonuniform.
o Individual empowerment, enlightenment, direct experience.
o The populace is full of energy that's not helping elites, not being tapped by elites.
Benefits of literalist false history, for the early and later ruling elite:
o Restrict varieties of religion, forming *uniform* network that is then integrated and powerful, like a political party effectively suppressing its internal differences.
o Collect tithes, control social and financial resources.
o Restricted, controlled, elite, exclusive authority -- thus exclusive power, in social-political-religious terms.
Opportunities for the early and later ruling elite opened up by switching/converting from gnostic true history to literalist false history:
o Can co-opt popular rebel Christian gnostic communities and join them together into an extensive network to form a parallel hierarchy of rule alongside the existing one, then take over the government and society.
o Collect tithes, control social and financial resources.
o Provide services in exchange for allegiance in manipulating society by coercively controlling mass power.
It's not so much that there was a serious *problem* with gnosticism, as much as a potential *opportunity* to hijack the fruit of the popular gnostic religion, turning it to personal gain for the exclusive few.
Initially, the Christian brand of the mystery-religions was especially focused on rebelling from coercive power of the elite rulers and their system of society through which they exercised their coercive power.
The problem this created for the rulers was, "how can we coercively force the rebellious masses back under us where we've always tried to keep them?" The solution: co-opt their religion of rebellion by distorting and rewriting it to favor uniform networked conformity, and to favor the exclusive hierarchical concentration of power and authority.
What did the ruling elites stand to gain by suppressing gnostic true history and enforcing Literalist false history? What did they initially stand to gain by initially creating the false history -- why forge Ignatius' letters and fabricate and literalize his person -- and what did they later stand to gain by continuing to enforce literalist false history and suppress gnostic true history?
We have authority; fall in line under us; our authority is a limited commodity, based on the limited availability of the apostles and the scarcity of keys to the kingdom: only we have the keys, they were given to us by the man Peter, who was given the keys by the man Jesus, therefore support our hierarchy system, support our social- political-religious system, and if you don't, we'll harm you and shut you out.
We, alone, have all authority, given by the apostles -- an exclusive group of actual men who were given all power by the man Jesus -- therefore obey your bishop; therefore support our hierarchy. Don't be on your own, in social-political-religious terms; don't be your own authority.
We won't let you tell a story that favors disunity, independence of thought, social-political-religious independence, and the democratic distribution of socio-political power.
This is why the ruling elite was always strongly motivated to enforce literalist false history -- not just any accidentally mistaken false history, but one that was specifically and strategically designed to preserve and maximize social-political-religious uniformity and the hierarchical, oligarchic exclusive concentration of power -- coercive power over the whole mass of the ruled.
The challenge for the Magisterial Reformation for the ruling elite that created it was how to transfer power from the ruling elite in Rome to the local ruling elite, without the masses of the Radical Reformation cashing in on the promise of "the priesthood of all believers".
In the end, the latter is what happened, and eventually, especially with the American disestablishment of religion around 1800, it was natural that the members of the democratic society would rediscover the gnostic true history and origin of Christianity. The Reformation succeeded at removing power from Rome, but failed to lastingly transfer that power to the exclusive ruling elite.
The populace got, once again, the kind of personal power or independence the original gnostic-esoteric Christians had.
It was important to the institutional, hierarchical, empire-affiliated and profit-driven state church to literalize Jesus and the pseudo-historical understanding of the mythic allegory. The church's exclusive monopoly and rule would have been harmed, were Xy taken to be mystic-state allegory, which is universally available without a hierarchical middleman of the controlling bishop. The bishops wanted to form an exlusive monopoly on religious Good.
They didn't directly care at all about literalism, but what was all-important was having a monopoly, and literalism was the means to their monopoly, not the end in itself. That's what literalism was financially for. Follow the money: how did the rulers of society financially profit from literalization of the Xn myth? The official religion became necessarily literalist because that was a strategy to monopolize and control salvation, creating a false scarcity of enlightenment and salvation and righteousness.
Jesus came only once, and all religious value comes strictly through him and then through controlled channels (the Peter figure) to him.
Note that while one book proclaims Christ and the apostles as the foundation stones of the Church, Matthew 16:18 seems to portray either Peter, or more likely Peter's proclamation of jesus as son of god, as the foundation stone of the Church.
There is nothing wrong with the pun of equating the mythic Peter figure with the foundation of the mystic-state Church, but the official bishops strove to profit from control of religious Good (salvation, sin-cleansing, enlightenment), and the way to do this was to literalize the mythic fine notion of Peter and his proclamation being the foundation petra of the Church. Ultimately, the issue isn't whether the word "this" points to Peter or to his proclamation, in identifying what Jesus said is the foundation of the Church.
What *really* matters is the mode of interpretation: mystic mythic metaphor that describes universally directly available religious Good, versus literalism -- particularly a literalism that is intent, above all, on crafting an artificial scarcity of religious Good (salvation, however it is conceived), controlled by the bishops. The bishops' real strategy is, "We don't care what you think salvation is and means, as long as you agree that it is only available through routing your money through our pockets exclusively."
What is acceptable theology? The theology which is acceptable to the bishops is anything and everything as long as it supports most effectively the one thing that is actually important: routing all the religious money through the pockets of the bishops; with only one sacrament, only one church, only one (flexible) theology, and far above all -- only one channel for money, the one that goes through the bishops' pockets.
Why *must* all religious value be concentrated entirely and only in the one true savior, the only door to heaven, Jesus? And why must Peter be real and be the only apostle to whom Jesus gave the keys to heaven and all religious Good, however it may be conceived?
Because a literal man in whom all religious Good is exclusively concentrated, and who handed the exclusive and restricted keys to only one man, Peter, the original head bishop, and always onto only one man at a time, the head bishop or Pope, is the most effective way to construct and fabricate an artificial monopoly of religious Good in order to route all money and power through the pockets and controlling hands of the bishops.
Why and to what extent do the bishops need to suppress the pure mythic view, the no-free-will doctrine, and sacred meals of visionary plants? The bishops don't directly give a damn about visionary plants, no-free-will philosophy, or pure mythic views -- but they *do* care *entirely* about creating artificial scarcity of religious Good in order to route money and power their way, and this indirectly requires suppressing high, effective religion.
Only by suppressing the no-free-will doctrine, visionary plants, and the pure mythic interpretation of religion, can direct access of each person to religious Good be prevented and a salvation franchise chain, controlled by bishops, be installed in order to profitably sell salvation to individuals at grossly inflated prices, similar to how the government and big business profit from the funny money generated by the results of making psychoactives illegal.
By suppressing real religion and constructing the narrowest acceptable substitute channel for religious quasi-fulfilment instead, the rulers of this world have profited wildly through their artificial salvation franchise, like the governor who supressed the discovery of the air-generating machine on Mars in the movie Total Recall, in order to profitably sell air to the populace.
Suppression of the universal mythic mystic-state Jesus was necessary in order to restrict availability of Jesus' religious Good to the few, official channels, controlled by the profit-mongering bishops. Another reason Christianity was popular pre-313 was the figure of the godman chastising the pseudo-religious profit-driven religious leaders, who were part of the profit-driven System of Empire.
Those profit-driven temple leaders who strove to retain a monopoly on religious Good and cleansing of sins formed a direct, literal model for later pseudo-religious profit-driven leaders; there is nothing coincidental about it, just an age-old battle between the rulers who want to franchise religious Good and the mystics and populace who want religious Good to be directly universally accessible.
Gurus and much of the Buddhist system may amount to the same pattern: the profit-driven professional religionists are heavily invested in doing all they can to control and restrict the channels of religious Good, and this means, again, not so much hating visionary plants and no-free-will doctrine and pure mythic interpretation, but rather, restricting and controlling the plants, doctrine, and interpretation, hoarding these for themselves, the upper echelon of churchmen.
Instead of visionary plants being publically known and publically respected, profit by officially diminishing and condemning them at every chance, offering a hyped-up placebo instead, and falsely and hollowly assign to it the attributes of the active sacraments. The hyped-up inert sacrament is somewhat like a can of "Coca-Cola" that has a picture of a bottle and contains no coca or kola, but caffeine instead -- "It's the real thing", the franchise insists, but it in fact is not the real thing at all.
Instead of the simple clarity of no-free-will doctrine, engender profitable confusion by blending no-free-will with freewill morality thinking.
Instead of pure mythic interpretation, incoherently and profitably add literalist thinking to mythic meaning.
Why have the three pillars of enlightenment and salvation been suppressed -- visionary plants, no-free-will, and purely mythic/mystic interpretation? Because anti-entheogenic, metaphysically garbled, literalism-degraded religion makes people hungry for real religion, which the bishops and gatekeepers of the religion can then falsely claim to sell to people, making a great financial profit for themselves.
Literalism together with anti-entheogenic moralism and garbled metaphysics was a great scam run by the ruling class and profit-driven fake religionists.
"We must insist that Jesus is just one real man and has all good, and handed it to one man only, Peter -- only this way can we restrict, control, and thereby profit hugely from the flow of religious Good." The literalized Jesus, literalism as a whole, and the literalized Peter in particular, were so necessary for the bishops that they invented these, in order to stop the free access to real religion and sell people fake, transiently satisfying religion instead, on a highly profitable installment plan.
It's more profitable to sell people increments of shadows and distant echoes of religion, rather than delivering the genuine religious goods in quantity. How many years of meditation with the guru are required, to reach nirvana? As many years as the guru has to live, and the guru's son and grandson too -- in fact, you can never reach nirvana, for that would be unprofitable, because you would no longer need the guru and his salvation franchise system.
The concept of 'extreme distortion' in the "religions of the book", which were based on the essential idea of playing with two interspersed allegory domains: politics, and the entheogen-induced intense mystic altered state
>>According to Edwin Johnson's theory of 700-1400 CE being nonexistent, phantom centuries, the Koran would also have to be a forgery. It mentions Abraham and Jesus. Mohammed was supposed to have lived in the 7th century. Though I've read that nothing of the Koran was actually written down until almost 200 hundred years later.
>>The complication goes further. According to standard history the crusades took place approximately between the years 1000 to 1200. If no biblical scriptures existed before 1500 then the crusades would be a total fabrication. The purpose of the crusades was that the Christians and their pope were to wrest Jerusalem from the hands of the Muslims. According to this theory of deleted centuries then the crusades never happened and the bible and the Koran couldn't have been written down until the 1500's. Who would create such conflicting religions at the same time and why?
>>It could be a key in solving this theory/mystery proposed by Edwin Johnson, which you said was written in a style that was almost incomprehensible and very convoluted.
Study Version of Edwin Johnson's "The Pauline Epistles - Re-Studied and Explained", 1894
The received history is an extreme distortion that includes fabrication but is never 100.00% fabrication. 'Distortion' is a much more powerful concept than simply saying something is true or false, real or unreal.
Our received religious history is a massive, extreme distortion; the challenge remains to determine *not* which aspects can be swallowed hook line and sinker, but rather, to determine what the underlying reality was that was extremely distorted, freely added to, and deleted from, which we can be assured is all but unrecognizable compared to the fictionalized and distorted version of history.
In discussing Edwin Johnson's theory of the phantom centuries of 700-1400 and fabrication of the entire canons of Jewish and Christian writings around 1510 instead of ancient times, I left out one word ("the Islamic scriptures"), and people leap on that omission. It's hard to decide where to draw the line in what one writes about this subject, which has tentacles into every subject.
The literary canon of Islam, which produced the illusion of its antiquity, has the same status as Christianity and the Jewish writings. Peter Kirby and Michael Conley have done some research that can support the deletion of Islamic centuries as late fictional inventions, fantasies inserted into the flow of real chronology.
This gives a new meaning to expression "religions of the book", which now means, the general technique of fabricating phantom centuries through semi-systematic literature designed to synthetically engineer authentication for one's religious authority and power.
Edwin Johnson's book has slight clues as to what his position would be on phantom Islamic centuries:
http://www.egodeath.com/edwinjohnsonpaulineepistles.htm -- "The Jewish scholars, dispersed from Spain, busied themselves with their legislative and poetical literature. It was no doubt in its way a great achievement; the mysterious and impressive contents of the books attracted attention and envy; the success in welding the scattered Jewish families into a community similar to that of **ISLAM** inspired imitations to a like enterprise. The military societies formed to resist the Orientals were succeeded by the spiritualmilitary confederation of the monks. Their object was to persecute and to depress the Jewish people, and to make use of their sacred books for the very opposite purpose to that for which they were designed. There are, I believe, in the Hebrew Bible itself, in veiled and allegorical forms, allusions to those confederacies against the people, possibly to the rise of monkdom (the K'morim), and of the papacy itself. The malignant design was carried out, and to it we owe the figure of the ex-persecutor Apostle."
"Again and again the absurd theory that the Hebrews were first in everything is forced upon us from the pages of the false Josephus. ... With regard to buildings, similar fables are told. The sons of Adam were the first builders, and so on. But our author has nothing to say that is valuable about either **MOSLEM** or Christian architecture. I call him as witness to the fact, insisted upon by Fergusson, that none of our ecclesiastical buildings or our ecclesiastical terms are ancient. He says that the Christian temples are everywhere used, especially in England, as Asyla not only for the innocent, but for the worst malefactors. Contrary to the law of Moses! He repeats the like in his English History, and he thinks it a great scandal. The statement throws great light on the circumstances under which the Church arose -- a secret society, sheltering the most desperate of mankind from justice. This, I believe, is the only foundation for tales of martyrdom. ... In another chapter he confesses that he cannot write a certain story of Christian buildings. He conjectures from the recently-published Eusebian tales that for about 300 years the Christians could have had no public buildings, but met in secret and subterranean places. It is safe to guess, however, that in remote places like Ethiopia, India, or Scythia, fanes may have been built to Christ! Or at Jerusalem by James! There is a slight notice of St. Prudentiana in Rome, the Church of the Blessed Virgin in the Transtevere, and the cemetery in the Appian way; and the fables about the Catacombs are beginning to be told. Then follows the fable about Helena and the invention of the Cross. Towards the end of the book we have the perverse story which the monks chose to tell about the rise of **MOHAMMEDANISM**. I have perhaps given sufficient illustrations of the state of historical knowledge about the middle of the so-called sixteenth century, itself a fabulous expression. Here were various systems of literature, Greek, Roman, Hebrew, Latin-ecclesiastical, Moslem, all claimed by their authors to be very ancient, all supported by false chronological schemes. The notion that the Hebrew is the oldest literature is due to the persistent falsehood of the monks. The theory is confuted by the fact that the Arabs looked up to the Greeks as their masters, and that the Hebrews confess themselves disciples of the Arabs and the Moors. But if the Greek and Latin classics are the oldest books of Europe, we appear to have no means of knowing exactly how old they are, in the absence of any genuine chronology."
http://www.didjesusexist.com/islamrefs.html -- "Peter Kirby presents dozens of outsider sources on formative Islam, based on Hoyland's book Seeing Islam as Other Saw It. The compilation should be helpful in reconstructing early Islamic history, the origins of the Qur'an, and the life of Muhammad."
When Peter Kirby discovered that there was no historical Paul, he compared it to finding that the external evidence indicates the historicity of Mohammed, *but disproves the historicity of the Quran* -- which is similar to the situation of Christianity: there appears to be external evidence for Jesus' historicity, but not for Paul's historicity. Peter Kirby was dismayed that he didn't see this, as he expressed in Kirby's last posting.
Peter Kirby wrote:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/JesusMysteries/message/16043 -- "In fact, in parallel to my Existence of Muhammad thread, which I just remembered, the external evidence would lead us to conclude that the Qu'ran is a myth and Muhammad is real, just as the external evidence would lead us to conclude that Paul is a myth and Jesus is real. Speaking strictly scientifically, of course.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/JesusMysteries/message/16044 -- "I concluded by saying that this whole situation paralleled the external witnesses to Islam, which I didn't even see when I took three days straight to compile my references for the sake of science on the net (believe it or f*ck*ng not!), and when I spent a year constructing my Early Christian Writings to lay a foundation for those who can peer further. Remember, I looked over the entire table of contents to the http://www.earlychristianwritings.com and proved in my mind that "Paul" will not be mentioned in either "Apologetic" or "External" literature, as well as apocalypses and other genres. The lack of external witness was significant. By the same method we proved the existence of Muhammad and the mythicity of the Qur'an, from the much later attestation to the use of the Qur'an. But in the external witnesses to Christianity we also factually see a much later reference to the use of Paul. Thus, the parallel is clear:
Michael Conley wrote on the subject of distortion of Islamic history (as well as distortion of Christian history comparable to Edwin Johnson's earlier, conventionally radical theory in Antiqua Mater), but I haven't read Conley's Islamic revisionist history theory, though it likely provides useful elements of revisionist religious history to integrate with elements from other revisionist theories:
"Advance in the scholarly investigation of religion (review of Dr. Lüling' book))"
"Günter Lüling, an unknown leader in the field of Islam Studies"
"Günter Lüling: A new Paradigm for the Rise of Islam and its Consequences for a New Paradigm of the History of Israel"
From Conley's first article: "The primeval intent of that which we today label 'Christianity' in a grossly altered form, is to be found in the popular pagan/tribal religion of the peasantry, the old Semitic, Israeli - but likewise Arab(!) - tribal religion. (Let it be stressed here emphatically that the Arabs, as well, were not only likewise Semetic but co-existed in close contact with the Israeli since at least a millennium.) This ancient Semetic faith was celebrated at `High Places' in Holy Groves where the cult at the shrines of the primeval Messianic Heroes of the tribes had blossomed."
Using Edwin Johnson, I assume that the religions of the book might have ancient *mystic* and *ritual* roots or versions, but the entire official canon of literature was a product of monastic forgery factories around 1510 CE -- a date which, however, should be read within a radically revisionist chronology or "scheme of centuries" per Johnson's book "The Pauline Epistles". I summarize Johnson's revision of the inventory of centuries as:
Between fall of Rome in 476 and Reformation around 1525, there were only 1/3 as many real years as the official Christian scheme of centuries asserts: only 350 years, not 1,050 years. This is equivalent to saying that there were 1,050 years between, but these were special, short years lasting only 4 months each.
This summary as I express and interpret it doesn't necessarily mean that the crusades were *entirely* fictional and have *no* basis or reflection in reality at all. There was really *some conflict of some sort*, and we end up with an elaborate distorted history packed with details, *almost* entirely fictional.
Compare an original guitar signal to a processed guitar signal as follows.
A. Take a clean electric guitar signal, from the output jack of an electric guitar, to a solid-state amplifier circuit, to good full-range speakers. Compare the sound to B as follows.
B. Use the processing chain:
Electric guitar output jack
Vacuum tube preamp with cascaded gain stages, each driven into distortion
Tube power amplifier, driven into distortion
Guitar speaker (not full-range), pushed hard into distortion until the voice coil almost melts and breaks
Two dynamic microphones (not high-fidelity), driven into distortion
Vacuum tube preamp circuits for microphones, driving into clipping
Vacuum tube mixing console
Recorded to 1" reel-to-reel tape, at high levels, saturating the tape
Mixed down to master tape, at high levels, saturating the tape
Mechanically recorded onto master platter
Pressing from the master platter onto vinyl discs
Played back mechanically from the vinyl disc to home speakers
I've left out some steps to keep the signal chain so short.
Now compare the sound of A and B. B has only the slightest relationship to the original input signal A, just as our received religious history has only the slightest relationship to the underlying historical reality.
'Gross distortion' is a more powerful concept for historical revisionist theory than the crude and simplistic concept of 'falsity' and 'truth'. Jesus lives; Jesus is lord, God has descended to earth and ascended with us -- *but in what sense*? The religions of the book are completely True, and are not in the least true.
Starting from mystic mythic allegory which always had freely mixed and played with political and entheogenic metaphorical descriptions, the pre-printing press religions became religions of the book, becoming gradually reified with almost entirely faked histories, freely distorted and reprocessed histories mixing truth and fiction at will, with untrammeled addition and deletion, with political and religious motivations all freely jumbled together.
These fabricated histories placed no value whatsoever on truth and reality; they were entirely motivated by the desire to allegorically describe entheogen-induced mental phenomena, such as caused by drinking a 'mixed wine' mixture of hashish, opium, and cowpie mushrooms, together with writing a literary invention styled as history for the purpose of garnering as much power to one's religious institution as possible.
In the fabrication of the literary canons of the religions of the book, literal historical truth was *entirely irrelevant* and nothing but a liability to be evaded and worked around -- driven by the question of "what story gives us power" integrated with "what story reflects mystic-state Truth; high experiential phenomena", while deliberately shutting out as much as possible the shackles that are literal historical truth.
Pseudo-history and the intense mystic altered state were set against and opposed to literal historical truth; the output of the formula is the grossly distorted literary canons and illusory history of the "religions of the book".
The New Chronology
Edwin Johnson, A Radical Advocate of Chronology Criticism -- Uwe Topper on Edwin Johnson
Why State Christianity in 400 needed to create and enforce a religion based on a historical rather than mythic mystery-savior
If each of us can commune directly with a mystery-savior, then we each have full authority. If communing with a mystery-savior is instead a matter of seeing him physically, after his literal bodily miraculous resurrection, then the only authority regarding this seeing would have to be the authority of the chain of men who first saw that man first-hand and officially passed on that witnessing to one other man.
In the a-historical mystery-religions, we each commune with the mystery-savior and we thus each have full authority, and none have spiritual authority over other people.
The following formula of ideas is incredibly overcomplicated, and yet, amazingly, it worked and gained all power for the State.
If we can justify political power in terms of spiritual authority, we can establish a controlled and strictly limited chain of all-authority, which the State can use to retain all power. The state can gather all spiritual power to itself and take it away from the general population if we make the following changes to the universally common mystery-religion ideas:
o Change the nature of the mystery-savior from a mythic experiential figure to a historical person.
o Change the nature of his dying and resurrecting to become literal bodily dying and resurrecting.
o Designate an official first follower of the mystery-savior and change the nature of his communing with the mystery-savior to being the first man to view the miraculously resurrected mystery-savior.
o For the general populace, change the nature of communing with the mystery-savior from being an entheogenic religious vision-encounter to a placebo consumption that produces no sense of knowledge, and assert that is the only possible spiritual authority the follower could attain in this life.
o Postulate the initial communing of the apostle as a handing over of all authority from being concentrated in the mystery-savior to being concentrated in the first man who witnessed the resurrection.
o Postulate that this authority can be further passed on from one man to another like keys from the first official witness to his designated successor.
>> There is at least one truly Christian church by this measure, that defines sin as not taking the entheogen, and defines salvation as accepting the entheogen as savior.
>Good for them, but now that you have realized all of this, now know this: Christianity is nothing but a Governmentally invented religion
Your statement "nothing but" is too strong. You need a terminological distinction between "State Christianity" and "early Christianity" or "underground Christianity" (the esoteric mystery-religion tradition).
We can assume that there has always been a spiritual elite in Christianity who has maintained the underground or mystery-religion tradition of entheogenic union with the divine mytho-spiritual Christ. Christianity practically began around 150 and really took off about 400 -- in 400 definitely as State Christianity.
But before State Christianity, we can assume that a significant amount of Christianity was a mystery-religion including entheogenic sacraments. Around 400, the State looked around at the available religions, and of all the variations and permutations and combinations, pulled together elements from various religions, including a lot of elements from the Christian religion as it had been so far, and then invented a history for it.
Christianity drew largely from Judaism, which was unusally historically literalist. I think that the most notable thing about Jewish religious thinking compared to Hellenistic religious thinking is that the Jews tended to literalize their historical legends.
Unlike Hellenists, Jews composed their religious stories in the form of historical events, occurrences along the timeline of history rather than in the timeless spiritual plane. The Hellenists expressed mystic ideas in terms of mythic allegories, but the Jews expressed mystic ideas in terms of historical fiction.
Christianity is the marriage of expressing mystic ideas in terms of mythic allegories and historical fictions. Per Dan Merkur, I think the Jews had entheogenic esoteric practices as well as an un-pagan system of moralism and a historical sense (unlike pagans) and a wish to rebel from the yoke of Rome.
Hyam Maccoby is a Jewish scholar who maintains that to create Christianity, Paul combined a pagan mythic savior figure with the historicist Jewish religion but especially with the Jewish actual political rebellion against Rome. Maccoby is basically right, except that he downplays the extent to which the Jews did have a direct equivalent to the mystery-religions -- the tradition of entheogen use.
The Jews had entheogen use but, as Maccoby points out, no mythic savior figure conceived of as dying and mystically resurrecting in union with his followers. The Jews had no ego-death savior figure, but instead, historical-fiction allegories such as Abraham's aborted sacrifice and Moses' leading the Jews out from slavery.
The State (Constantine) apparently decided that historical literalism is the most important attribute of a religion that was engineered specifically to manipulate people. A purely spiritual mystery-religion would not suffice -- salvation and spiritual authority should be completely restricted.
Authority must become a very finite, restricted commodity possessed only by the leader of the State religion. To do this, the idea was used, of the historical Jesus, who communicated only at one point in history, having all authority, and "giving" this authority, like keys, to only one person: Peter, who then handed down the keys through the popes.
The concept of "keys" as restricted authority is the foundation of State Christianity, and this concept of authority-keys requires historical literalism about the mystery-religion savior because time flows past only one time; a particular person only can pass on his authority at one point in time; all-authorized Jesus can only die once and hand off the keys (containing all Authority) once.
We could thus call it "State Concentrated-Authority Christianity" and immediately see how a historical person to whom all spiritual authority is attributed is a perfect solution for those who seek to hold all power. To hold all power, you can claim all authority, and must then assert that one person is able to hold all authority or pass it on to another at death, and you can claim to have been given all authority by a line of previous people who held all authority.
There is nothing inherently bad about Christianity; it has always had an entheogen thus true "esoteric" tradition. Christianity contained the esoteric (which is entheogenic) tradition long before the creation of State Christianity.
>Christianity is nothing but a Governmentally invented religion
That denies that any kind of Christianity existed before State Christianity was invented. Christianity did not begin with a wondrous literal bodily resurrection of a teacher/healer historical Jesus around the year 35; it began later, in the great overheated mystery-religion period around 150, the period of greatest syncretistic and entheogenic invention -- back in the tripped-out days of the psychedelic 160's.
When Christianity actually began around 150, it was moderately back-projected, and then later, around 300-400, officially back-projected to 0, or 35, or the years immediately after 35. Back-dating Christianity was not crucially necessary until State Christianity was being invented. At that time, they needed a way of gaining all authority and restricting it only to themselves.
They achieved this by the Mithraic idea of Peter the Rock God holding the magic keys that are invested with all authority -- authority is concentrated in the keys and they can be passed from one "spiritual" ruler to the next. To best create a system of authority/power that one can retain control over, they figuratively drew the following path for these magic keys: from heaven, to Jesus, to Peter, to the succession of popes.
To do this, they had to invent a history for Peter and for Jesus; they needed not the abstract authority legends of the other mystery-religions such as Mithraism, but rather, the concrete savior-person from the uniquely historical-minded mystery-religion: Christianity, the innovative syncretistic religion which married the historicalist Jewish way of thinking with the Hellenistic-type authority-figure from the mystery-religions.
This scheme is not the only way the State could have designed a religion to help it gain all power, but it was an effective solution that presented itself.
The term "State Christianity" clearly conveys that it was created as a totally fake system of pretend spirituality that actually exists for no reason except to control people and mentally enslave them. Some religious thinkers assert that the religion of a supposed anti-Christ would be of such a type -- completely disbelieved by those who invent and control it, and actually designed to enslave people and keep them from the truth. That is a religion of, in the name of the true, telling nothing but lies.
The pop spirituality of drug-free, lofty and never-attainable enlightenment is not quite "lies" or "propaganda" -- it's just plain misguided, due to a mix of historical ignorance and human pride and wishful thinking and excessive claims for the power of the "unaided" mind.
>which ripped off its texts from older religions, added fictional stories as it saw fit to recruit members and is not based in reality. I have no need for Christianity or its insanity.
Many people in the midst of the Hellenistic entheogenic mystery-religion experiences felt a need for some sort of mythic savior -- but that is distinct from needing the sort of Jesus figure mandated by State Christianity.
>>Postulate the initial communing of the apostle as a handing over of all authority from being concentrated in the mystery-savior to being concentrated in the first man who witnessed the resurrection.
>In Gnostic tradition this would be the magdeline( a woman). How does that fit in (of course over the centuries they destroyed her name and veracity). Perhaps that is how it was done.
A main opposition is between the Petrine school versus the John/Magdalene school. Is Mary held to be the first witness of the resurrection, or is Peter? I consider Mary, John, and entheogen use to be identified. I hypothesize that "John" is a male code-name of Mary.
There is no stronger opposition than Peter against Mary. The bad guys pick Peter, the good guys pick Mary. Too bad the most important part of the Gospel of Mary is lost.
My present working assumption, or strategy for seeking to decode allegories, is that every word of the canonical scriptures is pure allegory -- not a single word, not a single figure in the Bible is historically real. Once I have established that reality-tunnel, and fully make allegorical sense of it all, then I consider letting a bit of a real person back in here, and a bit there.
Ignatius of Antioch (d. 108) wrote letters against the Gnostics, promoting Literalist Christianity. The letters are all faked, as Hermann Detering showed. Michael Conley proposes that the Ignatius character was created by the power-mongers in Rome to co-opt the popular Gnostic anti-empire religion and harness it to build a parallel power hierarchy alongside the established power hierarchy, and eventually take over.
St. Ignatius, the Insidious Pragmatism of the Episkopoi of Rome and the Rise of Christianity
Ignatius, John and Paul: A Trio of Second Century, Hellenistic, Church Fathers
>> <Ignatius of Antioch (d. 108)
>> Seven letters have been preserved.
>All of them are faked, as already Detering figured.
>Could you give me a website source on the Detering proof. Pardon my ignorance, but I'm playing catch-up here.
These postulates mutually support each other:
o Jesus didn't exist (or, equivalently, there were 100 genuine historical Jesuses)
o Paul didn't exist
o All Paul's letters are faked
o Ignatius didn't exist
o All Ignatius' letters are faked
o The apostles didn't exist
o Ireneus' writings against heretics may have been intended to preserve the knowledge which is Gnostic Christianity.
This general way of thinking is represented by Hermann Detering, Michael Conley, and the Dutch Radical Critics. Freke and Gandy don't touch on all these points, but unlike those other researchers, they not only negate those kind of views that constitute official Christianity, but they also put forward a positive, definite explanation of what the original, Gnostic form of Christianity was actually about.
Detering and cohorts negate the components of official Christianity's telling of the origins of Christianity, but they don't try to provide a theory of what the original form of Christianity was actually about; like Doherty, they are essentially strictly *disprovers*, while Freke and Gandy (like me) are essentially *replacers*.
Examples of a positive, replacement theory of what Christianity was actually about:
o The beloved disciple was and has been considered, in esoteric Christianity, to be Mary Magdalene, and "John" is a code-name for her.
o Original Christianity was, and popular plebian Christianity across history has been, purely esoteric, not Literalist. The histories written by aristocrats and clergy strive to hide this fact and claim that their official Literalist Christianity was "normal" and securely dominant, and that various esoteric Christianities were an occasional deviation without continuity.
o The pierced heart of the sovereign on the tree, with the crown of thorns, is what happens in the psyche in the follower of the godman.
http://www.radikalkritik.de -- Hermann Detering's site
http://www.thecosmiccontext.de/ -- Michael Conley's site
http://www.depts.drew.edu/jhc/ -- Journal of Higher Criticism
http://www.depts.drew.edu/jhc/doughty.html -- article "Pauline Paradigms and Pauline Authenticity" by Darrell J. Doughty