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Who was Jesus?
#21
RE: Who was Jesus?
(August 15, 2021 at 9:43 pm)Ahriman Wrote: Yes......I tend to think in duality, so I phrased the question as a duality. However, feel free to express whatever it is Jesus means to you.

I think the idea of Jesus takes many forms... means many different things, to many different people. As Neo hinted at before, he can be seen as an ideal, or symbol of humanity. But then again, there's always people who insist he was a historical figure who raised from the dead.

Some people focus on his sermons and parables in the Gospels to discern who he is. Others rely heavily on Paul's ideas.

Kinda hard to pin down the subject matter in order to produce an adequate answer to the question.
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#22
RE: Who was Jesus?
(August 15, 2021 at 10:31 pm)vulcanlogician Wrote:
(August 15, 2021 at 9:43 pm)Ahriman Wrote: Yes......I tend to think in duality, so I phrased the question as a duality. However, feel free to express whatever it is Jesus means to you.

I think the idea of Jesus takes many forms... means many different things, to many different people. As Neo hinted at before, he can be seen as an ideal, or symbol of humanity. But then again, there's always people who insist he was a historical figure who raised from the dead.

Some people focus on his sermons and parables in the Gospels to discern who he is. Others rely heavily on Paul's ideas.

Kinda hard to pin down the subject matter in order to produce an adequate answer to the question.
Any answer to the question, is an adequate answer, provided it's coming from a place of honesty.
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#23
RE: Who was Jesus?
(August 15, 2021 at 10:37 pm)Ahriman Wrote:
(August 15, 2021 at 10:31 pm)vulcanlogician Wrote: I think the idea of Jesus takes many forms... means many different things, to many different people. As Neo hinted at before, he can be seen as an ideal, or symbol of humanity. But then again, there's always people who insist he was a historical figure who raised from the dead.

Some people focus on his sermons and parables in the Gospels to discern who he is. Others rely heavily on Paul's ideas.

Kinda hard to pin down the subject matter in order to produce an adequate answer to the question.
Any answer to the question, is an adequate answer, provided it's coming from a place of honesty.

Honesty helps. But it also helps to have a clear idea which person we're talking about.

If it is Jesus as Leo Tolstoy saw him (an extreme pacifist who led by example), then I admire the guy.

If he is more like the Baptists portray him (a miracle-worker who came to warn us of our impending judgment --his judgement-- and explain that believing the Bible is the only way to avoid eternal torment) then I kinda hate the guy.

Who he actually is matters to my answer. And I don't know. All we have to go on are old writings, mostly stuff other people wrote. There are a plethora of opinions. How should these writings be understood? How literal are they? And what do they reveal about Jesus?
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#24
RE: Who was Jesus?
(August 15, 2021 at 10:54 pm)vulcanlogician Wrote:
(August 15, 2021 at 10:37 pm)Ahriman Wrote: Any answer to the question, is an adequate answer, provided it's coming from a place of honesty.

Honesty helps. But it also helps to have a clear idea which person we're talking about.

If it is Jesus as Leo Tolstoy saw him (an extreme pacifist who led by example), then I admire the guy.

If he is more like the Baptists portray him (a miracle-worker who came to warn us of our impending judgment --his judgement-- and explain that believing the Bible is the only way to avoid eternal torment) then I kinda hate the guy.

Who he actually is matters to my answer. And I don't know. All we have to go on are old writings, mostly stuff other people wrote. There are a plethora of opinions. How should these writings be understood? How literal are they? And what do they reveal about Jesus?
Well I was raised Catholic, and us kids were taught to believe Jesus was a very, even ineffably, holy man, and that thinking we could be like Him, was delusional. That's what one of our teachers said, that thinking we could be like Jesus, was "a form of delusion". I know our teacher meant well, but that whole idea of being "delusional", is what put me off Catholicism, post-adolescence. I still love the Church, and have been to Mass a handful of times since my formative years. I think Jesus was an excellent man. He turned water into wine. That's my favorite miracle. i love wine.
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#25
RE: Who was Jesus?
(August 15, 2021 at 11:13 pm)Ahriman Wrote:
(August 15, 2021 at 10:54 pm)vulcanlogician Wrote: Honesty helps. But it also helps to have a clear idea which person we're talking about.

If it is Jesus as Leo Tolstoy saw him (an extreme pacifist who led by example), then I admire the guy.

If he is more like the Baptists portray him (a miracle-worker who came to warn us of our impending judgment --his judgement-- and explain that believing the Bible is the only way to avoid eternal torment) then I kinda hate the guy.

Who he actually is matters to my answer. And I don't know. All we have to go on are old writings, mostly stuff other people wrote. There are a plethora of opinions. How should these writings be understood? How literal are they? And what do they reveal about Jesus?
Well I was raised Catholic, and us kids were taught to believe Jesus was a very, even ineffably, holy man, and that thinking we could be like Him, was delusional. That's what one of our teachers said, that thinking we could be like Jesus, was "a form of delusion". I know our teacher meant well, but that whole idea of being "delusional", is what put me off Catholicism, post-adolescence. I still love the Church, and have been to Mass a handful of times since my formative years. I think Jesus was an excellent man. He turned water into wine. That's my favorite miracle. i love wine.

See! Right there! You just presented two different Jesuses (or Jesi as I like to call them). Seeing him as some "out of reach holy man" didn't resonate with you. But that's precisely what many perceive him to be.

I like wine too. And I much prefer wine to water. Since you brought up miracles, I'm curious. How much stock do you put in the miracles of Jesus? Do you think they were real events? Allegory maybe? And what if they did turn out to be embellishments that other people made up?  Would that alter how you perceive Jesus? Would you still think he is an "excellent man"?
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#26
RE: Who was Jesus?
(August 15, 2021 at 11:31 pm)vulcanlogician Wrote:
(August 15, 2021 at 11:13 pm)Ahriman Wrote: Well I was raised Catholic, and us kids were taught to believe Jesus was a very, even ineffably, holy man, and that thinking we could be like Him, was delusional. That's what one of our teachers said, that thinking we could be like Jesus, was "a form of delusion". I know our teacher meant well, but that whole idea of being "delusional", is what put me off Catholicism, post-adolescence. I still love the Church, and have been to Mass a handful of times since my formative years. I think Jesus was an excellent man. He turned water into wine. That's my favorite miracle. i love wine.

See! Right there! You just presented two different Jesuses (or Jesi as I like to call them). Seeing him as some "out of reach holy man" didn't resonate with you. But that's precisely what many perceive him to be.

I like wine too. And I much prefer wine to water. Since you brought up miracles, I'm curious. How much stock do you put in the miracles of Jesus? Do you think they were real events? Allegory maybe? And what if they did turn out to be embellishments that other people made up?  Would that alter how you perceive Jesus? Would you still think he is an "excellent man"?
Jesus wouldn't have needed to perform miracles, for me to consider Him an excellent man. His miracles are just icing on the cake. It's like, if you just know your grandfather is a good man, based on how much he sacrificed for his family, or his good energy, or whatever, then you don't need him to give you gifts, to know that he is a good man. Jesus went to His death, believing He was doing the right thing, that He was sacrificing Himself for the good of mankind. Let's say He was wrong about that......would it really matter? Would you look down on an Army cadet, who willingly joined the military, to fight for his country, even if his judgment about what he was really doing, was misguided?
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#27
RE: Who was Jesus?
It was an age of miracle-workers.
Miracle-workers were a dime a dozen in ancient Palestine. Literacy was low, and "miracle" worked just as well as any explanation.
Even Josephus tried to convince people the Roman Emperor Vespasian worked miracles, (and that he was the Messiah).
Jesus went to his death because in the Pax Romana, there was a standing order that trouble-makers get executed. No trial. (The trials in the gospels are all very different).
Wandering peasant preachers, (there were many), didn't get trials before Roman aristocrats.
Jesus (according to the gospels) caused a ruckus in the temple. The temple-economy was THE central basis of the the economy of Jerusalem.
Jesus threatened that. The role of a messiah was never to die for anyone's sins. That's just later made-up clap trap.
There is no reason to assume that a Jew, (Jesus) had any other notion of what the role of a messiah was. The church invented salvation and "died for our sins", MUCH later.
In Acts, the apostles ask him, "Wilt thou O Lord, at this time restore the Kingdom to Israel". Even THEY thought the Jewish messiah idea was correct.
Every religion is true one way or another. It is true when understood metaphorically. But when it gets stuck in its own metaphors, interpreting them as facts, then you are in trouble. - Joseph Campbell  Popcorn
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#28
RE: Who was Jesus?
(August 15, 2021 at 11:49 pm)Ahriman Wrote: Jesus wouldn't have needed to perform miracles, for me to consider Him an excellent man.

This is a powerful idea. Way more powerful than any idea a person has about Jesus performing miracles. "People who sacrifice themselves for a higher ideal are worth paying attention to (or at the very least, worth honoring or respecting... giving tribute)." THAT'S the idea.

When it needs to be a "magic person" or "divine person" who was sacrificed in order to make sense of the moral, then the story loses much of its meaning.


Quote:His miracles are just icing on the cake.

Do you think the miracles written in the Gospels are true? I don't. I don't have definite knowledge one way or the other, but I conclude that the descriptions of miracles found in the Gospels were fabrications. Sure, maybe I'm wrong. But it is reasonable to conclude as I have concluded. It's a discussion worth having, anyway, and I think the conclusion that the miracles were fabricated is defensible. Very defensible.
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#29
RE: Who was Jesus?
Quote:Do you think the miracles written in the Gospels are true?
If it had to be a yes or no answer, I would have to say yes. I believe in Jesus. Other people, who are not Jesus, have performed miracles as well.
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#30
RE: Who was Jesus?
(August 16, 2021 at 1:22 am)Ahriman Wrote:
Quote:Do you think the miracles written in the Gospels are true?
If it had to be a yes or no answer, I would have to say yes. I believe in Jesus. Other people, who are not Jesus, have performed miracles as well.


I don't believe in any of that. I think it's all hogwash. 

Fabricated events.

2000 year old stories about laying on hands healing of leprosy? Resurrections? Please. No way. I think these stories are false and meaningless. I am not impressed. Nor do I think it's plausible that anyone has ever performed miracles. And even if they did, so what? How meaningful is that really?
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