Around the world over the centuries, much has been written about religion, its meaning, its relevance and contribution to humanity. In the West particularly, sizable tomes have been composed speculating upon the nature and historical background of the main character of Western religions, Jesus Christ. Many have tried to dig into the precious few clues as to Jesus's identity and come up with a biographical sketch that either bolsters faith or reveals a more human side of this godman to which we can all relate. Obviously, considering the time and energy spent on them, the subjects of Christianity and its legendary founder are very important to the Western mind and culture.
Despite all of this literature continuously being cranked out and the significance of the issue, in the public at large there is a serious lack of formal and broad education regarding religion and mythology, and most individuals are highly uninformed in this area. Concerning the issue of Christianity, for example, the majority of people are taught in most schools and churches that Jesus Christ was an actual historical figure and that the only controversy regarding him is that some people accept him as the Son of God and the Messiah, while others do not. However, whereas this is the raging debate most evident in this field today, it is not the most important. Shocking as it may seem to the general populace, the most enduring and profound controversy in this subject is whether or not a person named Jesus Christ ever really existed.
Although this debate may not be evident from publications readily found in popular bookstores1 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot1), when one examines this issue closely, one will find a tremendous volume of literature that demonstrates, logically and intelligently, time and again that Jesus Christ is a mythological character along the same lines as the Greek, Roman, Egyptian, Sumerian, Phoenician, Indian or other godmen, who are all presently accepted as myths rather than historical figures2 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot2). Delving deeply into this large body of work, one uncovers evidence that the Jesus character is based upon much older myths and heroes from around the globe. One discovers that this story is not, therefore, a historical representation of a Jewish rebel carpenter who had physical incarnation in the Levant 2,000 years ago. In other words, it has been demonstrated continually for centuries that this character, Jesus Christ, was invented and did not depict a real person who was either the "son of God" or was "evemeristically" made into a superhuman by enthusiastic followers3 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot3).
This controversy has existed from the very beginning, and the writings of the "Church Fathers" themselves reveal that they were constantly forced by the pagan intelligentsia to defend what the non-Christians and other Christians ("heretics")4 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot4) alike saw as a preposterous and fabricated yarn with absolutely no evidence of it ever having taken place in history. As Rev. Robert Taylor says, "And from the apostolic age downwards, in a never interrupted succession, but never so strongly and emphatically as in the most primitive times, was the existence of Christ as a man most strenuously denied."5 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot5) Emperor Julian, who, coming after the reign of the fanatical and murderous "good Christian" Constantine, returned rights to pagan worshippers, stated, "If anyone should wish to know the truth with respect to you Christians, he will find your impiety to be made up partly of the Jewish audacity, and partly of the indifference and confusion of the Gentiles, and that you have put together not the best, but the worst characteristics of them both."6 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot6) According to these learned dissenters, the New Testament could rightly be called, "Gospel Fictions."7 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot7)
A century ago, mythicist Albert Churchward said, "The canonical gospels can be shown to be a collection of sayings from the Egyptian Mythos and Eschatology."8 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot8) In Forgery in Christianity, Joseph Wheless states, "The gospels are all priestly forgeries over a century after their pretended dates."9 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot9) Those who concocted some of the hundreds of "alternative" gospels and epistles that were being kicked about during the first several centuries C.E. have even admitted that they had forged the documents.10 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot10) Forgery during the first centuries of the Church's existence was admittedly rampant, so common in fact that a new phrase was coined to describe it: "pious fraud."11 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot11) Such prevarication is confessed to repeatedly in the Catholic Encyclopedia.12 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot12) Some of the "great" church fathers, such as Eusebius13 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot13), were determined by their own peers to be unbelievable liars who regularly wrote their own fictions of what "the Lord" said and did during "his" alleged sojourn upon the earth.14 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot14)
The assertion that Jesus Christ is a myth can be proved not only through the works of dissenters and "pagans" who knew the truth - and who were viciously refuted or murdered for their battle against the Christian priests and "Church Fathers" fooling the masses with their fictions - but also through the very statements of the Christians themselves, who continuously disclose that they knew Jesus Christ was a myth founded upon more ancient deities located throughout the known ancient world. In fact, Pope Leo X, privy to the truth because of his high rank, made this curious declaration, "What profit has not that fable of Christ brought us!"15 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot15) (Emphasis added.) As Wheless says, "The proofs of my indictment are marvellously easy."
From their own admissions, the early Christians were incessantly under criticism by scholars of great repute who were impugned as "heathens" by their Christian adversaries. This group included many Gnostics, who strenuously objected to the carnalization of their deity, as the Christians can be shown to have taken many of the characteristics of their god and godman from the Gnostics, meaning "Ones who know," a loose designation applied to members of a variety of esoteric schools and brotherhoods. The refutations of the Christians against the Gnostics reveal that the Christian godman was an insult to the Gnostics, who held that their god could never take human form.16 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot16)
It is very telling that the earliest Christian documents, the Epistles attributed to "Paul," never discuss a historical background of Jesus but deal exclusively with a spiritual being who was known to all gnostic sects for hundreds to thousands of years. The few "historical" references to an actual life of Jesus cited in the Epistles are demonstrably interpolations and forgeries, as are, according to Wheless, the Epistles themselves, as they were not written by "Paul."17 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot17) Aside from the brief reference to Pontius Pilate at 1 Timothy 6:13, an epistle dated ben Yehoshua to 144 CE and thus not written by Paul, the Pauline literature (as pointed out by Edouard Dujardin) "does not refer to Pilate18 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot18), or the Romans, or Caiaphas, or the Sanhedrin, or Herod19 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot19), or Judas, or the holy women, or any person in the gospel account of the Passion, and that it also never makes any allusion to them; lastly, that it mentions absolutely none of the events of the Passion, either directly or by way of allusion."20 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot20) Dujardin additionally relates that other early "Christian" writings such as Revelation do not mention any historical details or drama.21 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot21) Mangasarian notes that Paul also never quotes from Jesus's purported sermons and speeches, parables and prayers, nor does he mention Jesus's supernatural birth or any of his alleged wonders and miracles, all which one would presume would be very important to his followers, had such exploits and sayings been known prior to "Paul."22 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot22)
Turning to the gospels themselves, which were composed between 170-180 C.E.22a (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot22a), their pretended authors, the apostles, give sparse histories and genealogies of Jesus that contradict each other and themselves in numerous places. The birthdate of Jesus is depicted as having taken place at different times. His birth and childhood are not mentioned in "Mark," and although he is claimed in "Matthew" and "Luke" to have been "born of a virgin," his lineage is traced to the House of David through Joseph, such that he may "fulfill prophecy."23 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot23) He is said in the first three (Synoptic) gospels to have taught for one year before he died, while in "John" the number is three years. "Matthew" relates that Jesus delivered "The Sermon on the Mount"24 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot24) before "the multitudes," while "Luke" says it was a private talk given only to the disciples. The accounts of his Passion and Resurrection differ utterly from each other, and no one states how old he was when he died.25 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot25) Wheless says, "The so-called 'canonical' books of the New Testament, as of the Old, are a mess of contradictions and confusions of text, to the present estimate of 150,000 and more 'variant readings,' as is well known and admitted."26 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote.htm#foot26) In addition, of the dozens of gospels, ones that were once considered canonical or genuine were later rejected as "apocryphal" or spurious, and vice versa. So much for the "infallible Word of God" and "infallible" Church! The confusion exists because the Christian plagiarists over the centuries were attempting to amalgamate and fuse practically every myth, fairytale, legend, doctrine or bit of wisdom they could pilfer from the innumerable different mystery religions and philosophies that existed at the time. In doing so, they forged, interpolated, mutilated, changed, and rewrote these texts for centuries.27 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot27)
Basically, there are no non-biblical references to a historical Jesus by any known historian of the time during and after Jesus's purported advent. Walker says, "No literate person of his own time mentioned him in any known writing." Eminent Hellenistic Jewish historian and philosopher Philo (20 B.C.E.-50 C.E.), alive at the purported time of Jesus, makes no mention of him. Nor do any of the some 40 other historians who wrote during the first one to two centuries of the Common Era. "Enough of the writings of [these] authors...remain to form a library. Yet in this mass of Jewish and Pagan literature, aside from two forged passages in the works of a Jewish author, and two disputed passages in the works of Roman writers, there is to be found no mention of Jesus Christ."28 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot28) Their silence is deafening testimony against the historicizers.
In the entire works of the Jewish historian Josephus, which constitute many volumes, there are only two paragraphs that purport to refer to Jesus. Although much has been made of these "references," they have been dismissed by all scholars and even by Christian apologists as forgeries, as have been those referring to John the Baptist and James, "brother" of Jesus. Bishop Warburton labeled the Josephus interpolation regarding Jesus as "a rank forgery, and a very stupid one, too."29 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot29) Wheless notes that, "The first mention ever made of this passage, and its text, are in the Church History of that 'very dishonest writer,' Bishop Eusebius, in the fourth century...CE [Catholic Encyclopedia] admits... the above cited passage was not known to Origen and the earlier patristic writers." Wheless, a lawyer, and Taylor, a minister, agree that it was Eusebius himself who forged the passage.
Regarding the letter to Trajan supposedly written by Pliny the Younger, which is one of the pitifully few "references" to Jesus or Christianity held up by Christians as evidence of the existence of Jesus, there is but one word that is applicable - "Christian" - and that has been demonstrated to be spurious, as is also suspected of the entire letter. Concerning the passage in the works of the historian Tacitus, who did not live during the purported time of Jesus but was born two decades after his purported death, this is also considered by competent scholars as an interpolation and forgery.30 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot30) Christian defenders also like to hold up the passage in Suetonius that refers to someone named "Chrestus" or "Chresto" as reference to their Savior; however, while some have speculated that there was a Roman man of that name at that time, the name "Chrestus" or "Chrestos," meaning "useful," was frequently held by freed slaves. Others opine that this passage is also an interpolation.As to these references and their constant regurgitation by Christian apologists, Dr. Alvin Boyd Kuhn says:
"The average Christian minister who has not read outside the pale of accredited Church authorities will impart to any parishioner making the inquiry the information that no event in history iis better attested by witness than the occurences in the Gospel narrative of Christ's life. He will go over the usual citation of the historians who mention Jesus and the letters claiming to have been written about him. When the credulous questioner, putting trust in the intelligence and good faith of his pastor, gets this answer, he goes away assured on the point of the veracity of the Gospel story. The pastor does not qualify his data with the information that the practice of forgery, fictionizing and fable was rampant in the early Church. In the simple interest of truth, then, it is important to examine the body of alleged testimony from secular history and see what credibility and authority it possess."First, as to the historians whose works record the existence of Jesus, the list comprises but four. They are Pliny, Tacitus, Suetonius and Josephus. There are short paragraphs in the works of each of these, two in Josephus. The total quantity of this material is given by Harry Elmer Barnes in The Twilight of Christianity as some twenty-four lines. It may total a little more, perhaps twice that amount. This meager testimony constitutes the body or mass of the evidence of 'one of the best attested events in history.' Even if it could be accepted as indisputably authentic and reliable, it would be faltering support for an event that has dominated the thought of half the world for eighteen centuries.
"But what is the standing of this witness? Not even Catholic scholars of importance have dissented from a general agreement of academic investigators that these passages, one and all, must by put down as forgeries and interpolations by partisan Christian scribes who wished zealously to array the authority of these historians behind the historicity of the Gospel life of Jesus. A sum total of forty or fifty lines from secular history supporting the existence of Jesus of Nazareth, and they completely discredited!" (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot30a)30a (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot30a)
Of these "references," Dujardin says, "But even if they are authentic, and were derived from earlier sources, they would not carry us back earlier than the period in which the gospel legend took form, and so could attest only the legend of Jesus, and not his historicity." In any case, these scarce and brief "references" to a man who supposedly shook up the world can hardly be held up as proof of his existence, and it is absurd that the purported historicity of the entire Christian religion is founded upon them.31 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot31) As it is said, "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof"; yet, no proof of any kind for the historicity of Jesus has ever existed or is forthcoming.
It is evident that there was no single historical person upon whom the Christian religion was founded, and that "Jesus Christ" is a compilation of legends, heroes, gods and godmen. There is not adequate room here to go into detail about each god or godman that contributed to the formation of the Jewish Jesus character; suffice it to say that there is plenty of documentation to show that this issue is not a question of "faith" or "belief." The truth is that during the era this character supposedly lived there was an extensive library at Alexandria and an incredibly nimble brotherhood network that stretched from Europe to China, and this information network had access to numerous manuscripts that told the same narrative portrayed in the New Testament with different place names and ethnicity for the characters. In actuality, the legend of Jesus nearly identically parallels the story of Krishna, for example, even in detail, as was presented by noted mythologist and scholar Gerald Massey over 100 years ago, as well as by Rev. Robert Taylor 160 years ago, among others.32 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot32) The Krishna tale as told in the Hindu Vedas has been dated to at least as far back as 1400 B.C.E.33 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot33) The same can be said of the well-woven Horus mythos, which also is practically identical, in detail, to the Jesus story, but which predates the Christian version by thousands of years.As concerns the specious claim that the analogies between the Christ myth and those outlined below are "non-existent" because they are not found in "primary sources," let us turn to the words of the early Church fathers, who acknowledged that major important aspects of the Christ character are indeed to be found in the stories of earlier, "Pagan" gods, but who asserted that the reason for these similarities was because the evidently prescient devil "anticipated" Christ and planted "foreshadowing" of his "coming" in the heathens' minds.In his First Apology (http://www.ccel.org/fathers/ANF-01/just/justap1index.html), Christian father Justin Martyr (c. 100-165) acknowledged the similarities between the older Pagan gods and religions and those of Christianity, when he attempted to demonstrate, in the face of ridicule, that Christianity was no more ridiculous than the earlier myths:
"ANALOGIES TO THE HISTORY OF CHRIST. And when we say also that the Word, who is the first-birth of God, was produced without sexual union, and that He, Jesus Christ, our Teacher, was crucified and died, and rose again, and ascended into heaven, we propound nothing different from what you believe regarding those whom you esteem sons of Jupiter. For you know how many sons your esteemed writers ascribed to Jupiter: Mercury, the interpreting word and teacher of all; Aesculapius, who, though he was a great physician, was struck by a thunderbolt, and so ascended to heaven; and Bacchus too, after he had been torn limb from limb; and Hercules, when he had committed himself to the flames to escape his toils; and the sons of Leda, and Dioscuri; and Perseus, son of Danae; and Bellerophon, who, though sprung from mortals, rose to heaven on the horse Pegasus. For what shall I say of Ariadne, and those who, like her, have been declared to be set among the stars? And what of the emperors who die among yourselves, whom you deem worthy of deification, and in whose behalf you produce some one who swears he has seen the burning Caesar rise to heaven from the funeral pyre?"
In his endless apologizing, Justin reiterates the similarities between his godman and the gods of other cultures:
"As to the objection of our Jesus’s being crucified, I say, that suffering was common to all the aforementioned sons of Jove [Jupiter] . . . As to his being born of a virgin, you have your Perseus to balance that. As to his curing the lame, and the paralytic, and such as were cripples from birth, this is little more than what you say of your Aesculapius."
In making these comparisons between Christianity and its predecessor Paganism, however, Martyr sinisterly spluttered:
"It having reached the Devil’s ears that the prophets had foretold the coming of Christ, the Son of God, he set the heathen Poets to bring forward a great many who should be called the sons of Jove. The Devil laying his scheme in this, to get men to imagine that the true history of Christ was of the same characters the prodigious fables related of the sons of Jove."
In his Dialogue with Trypho the Jew (http://www.ccel.org/fathers/ANF-01/just/justinapology1.html), Martyr again admits the pre-existence of the Christian tale and then uses his standard, irrational and self-serving apology, i.e., "the devil got there first":
"Be well assured, then, Trypho, that I am established in the knowledge of and faith in the Scriptures by those counterfeits which he who is called the devil is said to have performed among the Greeks; just as some were wrought by the Magi in Egypt, and others by the false prophets in Elijah’s days. For when they tell that Bacchus, son of Jupiter, was begotten by [Jupiter’s] intercourse with Semele, and that he was the discoverer of the vine; and when they relate, that being torn in pieces, and having died, he rose again, and ascended to heaven; and when they introduce wine into his mysteries, do I not perceive that [the devil] has imitated the prophecy announced by the patriarch Jacob, and recorded by Moses? And when they tell that Hercules was strong, and travelled over all the world, and was begotten by Jove of Alcmene, and ascended to heaven when he died, do I not perceive that the Scripture which speaks of Christ, "strong as a giant to run his race," has been in like manner imitated? And when he [the devil] brings forward Aesculapius as the raiser of the dead and healer of all diseases, may I not say that in this matter likewise he has imitated the prophecies about Christ? . . . And when I hear, Trypho, that Perseus was begotten of a virgin, I understand that the deceiving serpent counterfeited also this."
And in his Octavius (http://www.ccel.org/fathers2/ANF-04/anf04-34.htm#P5713_906729), Christian writer Minucius Felix (c. 250 CE) denied that Christians worshipped a "criminal and his cross," and retorted that the Pagans did esteem a crucified man:
"Chapter XXIX.-Argument: Nor is It More True that a Man Fastened to a Cross on Account of His Crimes is Worshipped by Christians, for They Believe Not Only that He Was Innocent, But with Reason that He Was God. But, on the Other Hand, the Heathens Invoke the Divine Powers of Kings Raised into Gods by Themselves; They Pray to Images, and Beseech Their Genii.
"These, and such as these infamous things, we are not at liberty even to hear; it is even disgraceful with any more words to defend ourselves from such charges. For you pretend that those things are done by chaste and modest persons, which we should not believe to be done at all, unless you proved that they were true concerning yourselves. For in that you attribute to our religion the worship of a criminal and his cross, you wander far from the neighbourhood of the truth, in thinking either that a criminal deserved, or that an earthly being was able, to be believed God... Crosses, moreover, we neither worship nor wish for. You, indeed, who consecrate gods of wood, adore wooden crosses perhaps as parts of your gods. For your very standards, as well as your banners; and flags of your camp, what else are they but crosses gilded and adorned? Your victorious trophies not only imitate the appearance of a simple cross, but also that of a man affixed to it..."
The Jesus story incorporated elements from the tales of other deities recorded in this widespread area, such as many of the following world saviors and "sons of God," most or all of whom predate the Christian myth, and a number of whom were crucified or executed.33a (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot33a)
Although most people think of Buddha as being one person who lived around 500 B.C.E., the character commonly portrayed as Buddha can also be demonstrated to be a compilation of godmen, legends and sayings of various holy men both preceding and succeeding the period attributed to the Buddha.37 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot37)
The Buddha character has the following in common with the Christ figure:38 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot38)
The stories of Jesus and Horus are very similar, with Horus even contributing the name of Jesus Christ. Horus and his once-and-future Father, Osiris, are frequently interchangeable in the mythos ("I and my Father are one").41 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot41) The legends of Horus go back thousands of years, and he shares the following in common with Jesus:
In fact, in the catacombs at Rome are pictures of the baby Horus being held by the virgin mother Isis - the original "Madonna and Child"48 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot48) - and the Vatican itself is built upon the papacy of Mithra49 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot49), who shares many qualities with Jesus and who existed as a deity long before the Jesus character was formalized. The Christian hierarchy is nearly identical to the Mithraic version it replaced50 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot50). Virtually all of the elements of the Catholic ritual, from miter to wafer to water to altar to doxology, are directly taken from earlier pagan mystery religions.51 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote2.htm#foot51)
The story of Mithra precedes the Christian fable by at least 600 years. According to Wheless, the cult of Mithra was, shortly before the Christian era, "the most popular and widely spread 'Pagan' religion of the times." Mithra has the following in common with the Christ character:
The similarities between the Christian character and the Indian messiah are many. Indeed, Massey finds over 100 similarities between the Hindu and Christian saviors, and Graves, who includes the various noncanonical gospels in his analysis, lists over 300 likenesses. It should be noted that a common earlier English spelling of Krishna was "Christna," which reveals its relation to '"Christ." It should also be noted that, like the Jewish godman, many people have believed in a historical, carnalized Krishna.53 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote3.htm#foot53)
The Greek god Prometheus has been claimed to have come from Egypt, but his drama took place in the Caucasus mountains. Prometheus shares a number of striking similarities with the Christ character.
Five centuries before the Christian era, esteemed Greek poet Aeschylus wrote Prometheus Bound, which, according to Taylor, was presented in the theater in Athens. Taylor claims that in the play Prometheus is crucified "on a fatal tree" and the sky goes dark:
"The darkness which closed the scene on the suffering Prometheus, was easily exhibited on the stage, by putting out the lamps; but when the tragedy was to become history, and the fiction to be turned into fact, the lamp of day could not be so easily disposed of. Nor can it be denied that the miraculous darkness which the Evangelists so solemnly declare to have attended the crucifixion of Christ, labours under precisely the same fatality of an absolute and total want of evidence."63 (http://www.truthbeknown.com/footnote3.htm#foot63)
Tradition holds that Prometheus was crucified on a rock, yet some sources have opined that legend also held he was crucified on a tree and that Christians muddled the story and/or mutilated the text, as they did with the works of so many ancient authors. In any case, the sun hiding in darkness parallels the Christian fable of the darkness descending when Jesus was crucified. This remarkable occurrence is not recorded in history but is only explainable within the Mythos and as part of a recurring play. Continue to next part