Acharya S and the real Christ Conspiracy

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Maximos
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Re: Acharya S and the real Christ Conspiracy

Post by Maximos » Wed Mar 19, 2014 12:38 pm

stephan happy huller wrote:It's not a smear. It is very odd. Andrew Criddle is probably the most knowledgeable person here at this forum and he doesn't have naked virgins feeding him grapes and fanning him. The degree of devotion to someone of inferior knowledge about early Christianity is unusual and raises many questions about what is really going on here.
Here's another perfect example of how NOT to be by stephan happy huller

Where's your evidence that Acharya has "naked virgins feeding her grapes and fanning her"? It's just another condescending smear.

Stephan, you've already admitted that you've never read any of Acharya's books so, why should anybody consider you or anybody else who hasn't actually studied her work a credible, trustworthy source qualified to comment on it with accuracy and competence?

Where's your evidence for your claims? Your claims are false so, you prove my point in my previous post. "What's really going on here" is that you've been consistently dishonest, smearing an authors work you have admitted you've never studied. So, what would you say to someone who constantly smears an authors work they've never read and know very little about it?

For Christ's sakes, Carrier even admits in the video that "he has no interest in pursuing or investigating astrotheology as he finds it "dull."":
53 through 54 Carrier admits he has no interest in pursuing or investigating astrotheology as he finds it "dull." Carrier says he could never write a book on the subject. (ain't that the truth!)

54 Neil Godfrey: "One thing that disturbs me about Acharya's/Murdock thesis is that she seems to be always trying to hide what appears to be fairly apparent especially where now Robert Tulip has in a sense come out and admitted it that they actually do believe themselves in some sort of Pantheism, they believe this religion themselves. In affect, they're evangelizing. Whereas Freke and Gandy they're (inaudible) about what their doing and you can read their books and make allowances for where they're coming from and that's fine I like that."

"My thoughts: Nope, all these guys are doing is proving how little they know about Acharya's work. It's a complete lie to claim Acharya is "hiding" anything or being deceptive in any way. Instead of always assuming the worst and smearing her with character assassinations, Neil, you could just be polite ask but, we can always count on you to ruin any opportunity for a reasonable discussion on this subject, which is truly sad because you do such a good job on other subjects but, just flat drop the ball any time Acharya or her work is mentioned. That is *YOUR* issue that *YOU* need to work out. Scholars who've actually read Acharya's work are quite supportive of it."

Nuskeptix "Christ Myth Theory"
What books of Acharya's has Andrew Criddle actually read?

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stephan happy huller
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Re: Acharya S and the real Christ Conspiracy

Post by stephan happy huller » Wed Mar 19, 2014 1:09 pm

Are you demented? Your circular logic is demonstrated by the fact that Andrew Criddle's worth is supposed to be determined by this 'books' you extol so highly. I put forward Andrew as the greatest at this forum NOT BECAUSE I agree with his presuppositions, NOR because I always agree with his conclusions BUT because he has demonstrated time and again he has the greatest degree of familiarity with a wide variety of source material.

That's the difference between your demented group and the rest of scholarship. I couldn't care less whether or not someone agrees or disagrees with my conclusions. That doesn't determine whether or not I respect someone. In fact, like Groucho Marx, I more than likely would disrespect someone for agreeing with me for the sake of agreeing with me.

All I expect from someone is that they've read as much as possible on a subject before making their conclusions. To this end Andrew gets my nod for Early Writings Poster of the Year because he's just so fucking knowledgeable. I can bring up X and he always something thoughtful and intelligent to say about X. The fact that we don't agree on everything or often - anything - is beside the point. He's obviously spent a lot of time thinking about the subject matter.

You on the other hand are another case entirely. You and the rest of the gang just come out as apostles and proselytes for a belief system which clearly in some form antedated to the little material from early Christianity you actually read. In other words, your stupid belief system came first and then you started going through the early material in order to bolster that theory.

Now some may counter that Andrew is set in his own belief system and he's not perfectly open-minded about new ideas. I couldn't careless about that. Why? Because Andrew's belief system IS AN ATTEST CHRISTIAN BELIEF SYSTEM. In other words, he's arranging evidence as a Christian would.

You and the 'Acharya S' gang haven't actually demonstrated that your bizarre theory of Christian origins actually was held by any Christians at any time in the history of the world. As such, you haven't even met the first threshold for being a legitimate tradition. If Christians can be demonstrated to have held the views of Acharya S at any point in their history it's a legitimate way of interpreting data from early Christianity. If not ... well you know.
Last edited by stephan happy huller on Wed Mar 19, 2014 1:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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stephan happy huller
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Re: Acharya S and the real Christ Conspiracy

Post by stephan happy huller » Wed Mar 19, 2014 1:26 pm

Let me say that if we were debating who had the correct interpretation of astro-theology there might be a place for Acharya's gang at the table.

But you have yet to demonstrate that early Christianity developed from a pre-existent 'astro-theology' or that astro-theology is central to the early Church. We are discussing early Christianity, not astro-theology. So stop coming to these discussions if you aren't willing to contextualize your statements or comments.

I don't need to read anything written by Acharya until someone demonstrates that astrotheology as she understands it is central to early Christianity and what I have seen promoted her gang seems to be utterly not in keeping with the volumes of original material I have read about early Christianity.

Stop trying to simply get people to buy your books. As I have noted before this is forum which is devoted to the discussion of ideas. If you would just sit down and present a rational case for the sublimity of Acharya's writings at a forum like this rather than admonish people for not having read a books of dubious value given that the author has no credentials of any sort in any field related to the subject she is writing about, you might have better results.
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Roger Pearse
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Re: Acharya S and the real Christ Conspiracy

Post by Roger Pearse » Wed Mar 19, 2014 1:48 pm

stephan happy huller wrote:... he doesn't have naked virgins feeding him grapes and fanning him.
Well he's not Bart Ehrman, you know?

In fairness, these are rarely available in the UK by mail order anyway.

They might be on amazon.it..?

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neilgodfrey
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Re: Acharya S and the real Christ Conspiracy

Post by neilgodfrey » Wed Mar 19, 2014 2:24 pm

Maximos wrote:
Blood wrote:If Acharya S isn't some sort of personality cult, I haven't seen evidence of it. I don't dislike her work, but nothing's a bigger turn-off than "our leader must not be criticized" rhetoric.

Are her followers called S-enes?
It's these types of smears that ruin any reasonable discussion. It's one thing to offer positive constructive criticism based on the evidence, facts and arguments but, it's something completely different to toss strawman arguments, ad homs and malicious personal insults at her and her work and her supporters while the critics never read her work in the first place. That is known as intellectual dishonesty and it's never productive and has no place in legit discussion.
I used to publicly protest against the terrible abuse others poured on Murdock. I found much of it sickening and could see no grounds for he worst of what I read. I believed it was the arguments and works she wrote that should be addressed. Not the person, and especially not through personal abuse.
Maximos wrote:Just ask Neil Godfrey and Richard Carrier etc. what books of Acharya's they've actually read from cover to cover ... not just skimming for dirt to strawman. If they're honest, they will admit that they read no books of hers.
That makes it difficult for me. If I tell you then you will say I am not being honest. So how can I win? I was honest enough to admit before I started reviewing any of her material or commenting on any of it publicly that I had not read any of her works from cover to cover. That's how you know what you think you know now. Because I was up front.

I found her books too tedious to read because they were riddled with more polemic than argument.

The reason I told everyone I had not read her books from cover to cover was to explain why I had not reviewed any of them as I had other books.

I was being pressured by Murdock's followers to give her views an equal or fair hearing and I was resisting -- mainly because I had not read her works in detail.

So where is my dishonesty here, Maximos?

Someone then sent me a digitized copy of The Christ Conspiracy and I read it in depth and carefully in order to write an honest series of reviews "by popular demand" you might say.

The firsts review I was not vicious, angry, hostile, but I was disturbed by what I saw as her anti-intellectual style and I commented on this in as straight-forward and honest -- but not hostile -- manner as possible. For my efforts I was abused and accused of all sorts of things by her followers and Murdock herself.

I continued for a few more posts but it was evident that I was unable to continue expressing any honest criticism without being personally slandered and insulted by her and her followers.
Maximos wrote:These guys can't even explain her evidence or arguments because they do not even know what they are, therefore, they're not even qualified to discuss it. In that Nuskeptix video with Godfrey and Carrier you'll notice Neil fail miserably to explain her position on the fish or the 12.
Wrong, Maximos. I was not even attempting to explain "her position" on those details and made it very clear who I was responding to and the context of my comments. As your quote clearly demonstrates I am discussing METHOD of argument. (I like the way the 'um's' etc are included in the transcript. I have done transcripts myself and have spoken with those trained to do this sort of work and one of the basic rules is that you never documents the 'ums and ahs' unless you want to make the speaker look stupid. So I understand where you are coming from.)
50:18 Neil Godfrey: "I've been in some conversations on a discussion board with one of Murdock's publicists, Robert Tulip, and um, my point is, ok look, I have this hypothesis I believe that the gospel miracle stories can be explained, ya know, by ya know such & such and the prediction here would be that every word and phrase in this particular pericope can be explained in terms of yeah, some other scripture and I can go through and show that and I ask him, "what is your prediction?" and all he can do is say well, (inaudible to me) ... the fish and the 12 or something like that ..." (laughter & ridicule)

Nuskeptix "Christ Myth Theory"
Maximos wrote:Neil, is calling Robert Tulip a "publicist" just another condescending put down? He's not a publicist and has never given the impression he was so, why the name calling?
By publicist I simply meant someone who advocates her views. Is there anything wrong with that? I fail to see any put-down. But if there really is a perceived put-down I will apologized for the remark. It was an innocent comment and meant nothing more than to explain to the audience who Robert Tulip was. I fail to see this as name-calling. He advocates her views and comes to my blog to promote them -- or at least he used to, and is doing the same here, yes?
Maximos wrote:Robert has a thread about the fish here but, if anybody were serious about learning more you would want to read Christ in Egypt: The Horus-Jesus Connection
That's nice. But I was referring to a conversation here on this forum about METHOD of argument, Robert's claim that he uses the scientific method and my rejoinder that he doesn't -- his hypothesis has no predictive power, or at least a very poor one compared with other hypotheses.

Now how a little bit of sticking to the facts yourself, Maximos.
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Blood
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Re: Acharya S and the real Christ Conspiracy

Post by Blood » Wed Mar 19, 2014 3:14 pm

Maximos wrote:
Blood wrote:If Acharya S isn't some sort of personality cult, I haven't seen evidence of it. I don't dislike her work, but nothing's a bigger turn-off than "our leader must not be criticized" rhetoric.

Are her followers called S-enes?
It's these types of smears that ruin any reasonable discussion.
Thanks for confirming my point.
“The only sensible response to fragmented, slowly but randomly accruing evidence is radical open-mindedness. A single, simple explanation for a historical event is generally a failure of imagination, not a triumph of induction.” William H.C. Propp

xplosion
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Re: Acharya S and the real Christ Conspiracy

Post by xplosion » Fri Mar 28, 2014 1:17 pm

after reading ulansey's response to swerdlow (which Vridar/Godfrey failed to supply if he knew about it) I suggest swerdlow should be in for the same sort of castigation that Maurice Casey receives at Vridar . . . but don't hold your breath. I also think accusing Acharya S of trying to "commit a new religion" is outlandish. Accepting astrotheology as a fact that may have contributed to the creation of certain religions hardly means one is "proselytizing" astrotheology.

On the humorous side is Vridar accusing anyone else of hardening their position to the point of cultishness. Calendars etc provide teaching tools, but I don't think anyone is foolish enough to think the modern world is going to return to sun worship! Though should our technological civilization ever really fall, an understanding of certain astronomical/astrological information would be extremely important to retain.

Tulip suggests a "reformation of Christianity" but removing the divine from Jesus simply destroys the religion, of which both the fundamentalists and tenured historians are well aware (Freke and Gandy also seem inclined to a "reformation of Christianity," back to gnosticism). Augustine said (may be paraphrasing here) "but for the miracles I would not be a Christian"

There is plain historical evidence that astrology played a part in the elevation of new gods at important astrological "moments," even before the theory and then proof of the precession. Was it really only politics that elevated Osiris in Egypt and demoted Horus to the son of Osiris?

Pythagoras described the heavenly bodies as immortal and divine.

Astrological horoscopes were found among the Dead Sea Scrolls, and Judaism was ultimately also born of sun worship -- a gradual step-down from a pantheon dominated by El Elyon (the sun) to removing Yahweh from the pantheon, establishing him as a single deity, and killing anyone who disagreed.

Our current three major religions (all ultimately derived from the Old Testament) were created within a span of around 1200 years in the middle of which was an important astrological "turning point" though the only reason one of them survived was because it was adopted by certain elite aristocratic circles in Rome (Celsus while anti-Christian admitted that the Christians were "good at business"!)

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neilgodfrey
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Re: Acharya S and the real Christ Conspiracy

Post by neilgodfrey » Fri Mar 28, 2014 4:19 pm

I hope it is noted that the only excerpt from Swerdlow's criticism of Ulansey I quoted was the singular point that another scholar, Beck, found agreement with. I deliberately avoided citing any other criticisms by Swerdlow since they are more polemical than scholarly and not widely accepted by scholars as far as I can tell.

I included in my quotations the fact that much of Swerdlow's criticism of Ulansey was not accepted by Beck.

My only point -- it obviously was not made emphatically enough -- was to draw people's attention to the simple fact that Ulansey's thesis is not a "done deal". It is still under debate and faces serious objections. I am myself quite open to Ulansey's hypothesis being correct but this question has not yet been settled.

It is a mistake for anyone to uncritically base any belief-system on Ulansey's ideas as if they are fact. They are not. They are debatable hypothesis and have not yet persuaded most scholars -- however interested they are in these views.
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neilgodfrey
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Re: Acharya S and the real Christ Conspiracy

Post by neilgodfrey » Fri Mar 28, 2014 4:24 pm

xplosion wrote: On the humorous side is Vridar accusing anyone else of hardening their position to the point of cultishness.
I think we need to be clear what constitutes cultish behaviour. I have been a member of a cult and can recognize the symptoms all too well. Obviously people wrapped up in such a movement or collective of sorts do not see themselves as cultish. They never do.

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

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sociologic ... _movements
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xplosion
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Re: Acharya S and the real Christ Conspiracy

Post by xplosion » Fri Mar 28, 2014 8:07 pm

I actually do respect your point that very often too much is read into single statements by the astrotheologists, but need fervency of argument always amount to cultishness? on the other end of the spectrum, on your own site (which BTW I otherwise consider quite invaluable), I too often see someone attempting to make a valid point dismissed as spam even when they overall agree with the points of view being expressed on Vridar

you're probably already aware of this, but Robert Price has changed his mind about Acharya S and now considers her a developed and decent scholar even though she has not moved away from her astrotheological views

"To me, the most interesting aspect of Acharya’s work is her pursuit of old, now ignored theories by comparative religionists and mythologists suggesting that Christianity embodies a perennial theology of the heavenly bodies, their motion and the common reflection of this astrotheology in the myths of all nations. "

http :/ / freetho ughtn atio n.co m/what-i-think-of-acharya-sdm-murdock/

though I doubt she has ever heard of Acharya S, a "renegade" Israeli historian gives some indirect support to Acharya S hypothesis about Jesus being invented by northern israelites:

So who were the real authors of the Dead Sea Scrolls? Elior theorizes that the Essenes were really the renegade sons of Zadok, a priestly caste banished from the Temple of Jerusalem by intriguing Greek rulers in 2nd century B.C. When they left, they took the source of their wisdom — their scrolls — with them. "In Qumran, the remnants of a huge library were found," Elior says, with some of the early Hebrew texts dating back to the 2nd century B.C. Until the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the earliest known version of the Old Testament dated back to the 9th century A.D. "The scrolls attest to a biblical priestly heritage," says Elior, who speculates that the scrolls were hidden in Qumran for safekeeping.

http://content.time.com/time/world/arti ... z2xJiQcrCS

Acharya S makes much of the Zadokites in her original book. The "biblical priestly heritage" referred to by historian Elior is that of Melchizedek, the priestly line going back to the original pantheon that included Yahweh as merely an underling thunder/mountain god. The Zadokites were clearly Melchizedekian and part of their antipathy stemmed from Israel being invaded and subjugated by Judea circa 150 BC.

now how this is in reference to the invention of Jesus/hypothesis as stated by Acharya S:

1. the Dead Sea Scrolls, deposited at Qumran sometime between mid 1st century and mid second century, do not mention Jesus, who some jews considered the messiah. Of course it can be argued at length as to why or why not, assuming Jesus ever existed . . . such as if Jesus had existed and so recently caused such consternation, there "should" have been some evidence of this schism left with the scrolls which are considered to be a concerted attempt to preserve jewish history. There is none.

2. Among the scrolls is one entitled "The Last Jubilee." This document states that the messiah would be Melchizedek Redivivus (essentially Melchizedek reincarnated).

3. "Paul" (epistles later included in the New Testament) twice ascribes Jesus to the priestly line of Melchizedek. Whether there was ever really a Paul or Saul of Tarsus is a whole other discussion, but it is widely accepted that one person did not write all of Paul.

If Jesus was "of Melchizedek" he would have been of extreme interest to the Zadokites, possibly even a hero as he is exactly what Last Jubilee is anticipating/calling for. Certainly he would have attracted at least some Zadokite followers. In this case the Messiah would already have come (though rejected and kiled by the Ju-deans) and there would be no reason to bury a document calling for one at Qumran following the first or second destruction of Jerusalem.

Instead we should see buried at Qumran a document proclaiming Jesus of Nazareth as the embodiment of prophecy. ***except much evidence points to Nazareth did not exist until late first century AD at earliest

4. Jesus either existed or he did not exist and someone invented him. If he existed it's possible the Zadokites also rejected him although the problem there is Melkizedekian Jesus was exactly what they were looking/calling for in Last Jubilee.

Acharya S (possibly inheriting or expanding the opinion of others) suggests that since the messiah demonstrably did not come and defeat Rome, that the Zadokites decided to invent one -- and he eventually WOULD "defeat" Rome, ironically via about the strangest route possible (though actually it was more elitist Romans adopting and adapting Christianity).

She suggests The Last Jubilee is a blueprint for a messiah, and by extension that these northern Israelites during the diaspora landed in Alexandria, Antioch and elsewhere, where they joined and gradually took over already-existing Hellenized Christ schools (many lines promoting their own version, which is why there were so many Christ/anointed one pretender savior gods lurking about), culminating in the arguments between Justin Martyr and Marcion of Pontus over what Jesus should "be"

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