mercredi 25 mai 2011

Acharya S supports illogical argument of Earl Doherty

giving an excerpt in her letter:

Doherty is most at home when analyzing the Pauline epistles, drawing on an earlier lineage of scholars who recognized there is next to nothing in them indicating a "historical" Jesus. In this regard, Earl correctly identifies that when Paul is speaking of "scripture" and "prophetic writings," he is referring to the Old Testament, specifically the Greek translation or Septuagint. In that book, the word "Christos" appears some three dozen times, and it is evident that, in his revelation of Christ, Paul is building upon so-called "messianic prophecies," not the words or deeds of a "historical" Jesus of Nazareth. In other words, the canonical Christ represents not "fulfillment of prophecy" but, rather, a patchwork of Old Testament "messianic scriptures," amalgamated with Pagan philosophical notions and mythical motifs, along with both Jewish and Gentile wisdom sayings. Christ is, through and through, a literary figure, handily demonstrated in this lengthy book.

OK the arguments of some people, already known plus this one go something like this: Christ prophecied the destruction of Jerusalem, ergo (sic!) the Gospels were written after or at least not long before Anno Domini 70. Christ was prophecied by Isaiah and others tima after time, aspect after aspect of his life, ergo (sic!) he never existed, St Paul made up a fulfilment out of nothing but (otherwise so far unfulfilled) OT prophecy.

Do I see a question begging argument? How do either of these guys know anything about whether fulfilled prophecy happens or not? They seem to be just presuming it does not happen. And to be dealing with all evidence according to that presumption./HGL

mardi 10 mai 2011

Ascension plagiarises Krishna myth? No.

1) Ascension plagiarises Krishna myth? No., 2) Two slight differences with Dr Craig

Acharya seems to get Mahabharata wrong:

"A fierce hunter of the name of Jara then came there, desirous of deer. The hunter, mistaking Keshava, who was stretched on the earth in high Yoga, for a deer, pierced him at the heel with a shaft and quickly came to that spot for capturing his prey. Coming up, Jara beheld a man dressed in yellow robes, rapt in Yoga and endued with many arms. Regarding himself an offender, and filled with fear, he touched the feet of Keshava. The high-souled one comforted him and then ascended upwards, filling the entire welkin with splendour. When he reached Heaven, Vasava and the twin Ashvinis and Rudra and the Adityas and the Vasus and the Viswedevas, and Munis and Siddhas and many foremost ones among the Gandharvas, with the Apsaras, advanced to receive him. Then, O king, the illustrious Narayana of fierce energy, the Creator and Destroyer of all, that preceptor of Yoga, filling Heaven with his splendour, reached his own inconceivable region. Krishna then met the deities and (celestial) Rishis and Charanas, O king, and the foremost ones among the Gandharvas and many beautiful Apsaras and Siddhas and Saddhyas. All of them, bending in humility, worshipped him. The deities all saluted him, O monarch, and many foremost of Munis and Rishis worshipped him who was the Lord of all. The Gandharvas waited on him, hymning his praises, and Indra also joyfully praised him."*


"Thus addressed by Pritha’s son of pure deeds, all of them hastened their preparations with eagerness for achieving their safety. Arjuna passed that night in the mansion of Keshava. He was suddenly overwhelmed with great grief and stupefaction. When morning dawned, Vasudeva of great energy and prowess attained, through the aid of Yoga, to the highest goal. A loud and heart-rending sound of wailing was heard in Vasudeva’s mansion, uttered by the weeping ladies. They were seen with dishevelled hair and divested of ornaments and floral wreaths. Beating their breasts with their hands, they indulged in heart-rending lamentations. Those foremost of women, Devaki and Bhadra and Rohini and Madira threw themselves on the bodies of their lord. Then Partha caused the body of his uncle to be carried out on a costly vehicle borne on the shoulders of men. It was followed by all the citizens of Dwaraka and the people of the provinces, all of whom, deeply afflicted by grief, had been well-affected towards the deceased hero. Before that vehicle were borne the umbrella which had been held over his head at the conclusion of the horse-sacrifice he had achieved while living, and also the blazing fires he had daily worshipped, with the priests that had used to attend to them. The body of the hero was followed by his wives decked in ornaments and surrounded by thousands of women and thousands of their daughters-in-law. The last rites were then performed at that spot which had been agreeable to him while he was alive. The four wives of that heroic son of Sura ascended the funeral pyre and were consumed with the body of their lord. All of them attained to those regions of felicity which were his. The son of Pandu burnt the body of his uncle together with those four wives of his, using diverse kinds of scents and perfumed wood. As the funeral pyre blazed up, a loud sound was heard of the burning wood and other combustible materials, along with the clear chant of Samans and the wailing of the citizens and others who witnessed the rite. After it was all over, the boys of the Vrishni and Andhaka races, headed by Vajra, as also the ladies, offered oblations of water to the high-souled hero.**

So Krishna does very much not resurrect bodily and ascend bodily into Heaven, it is only his soul that ascends and we get to know that through a vision or not at all except through (at least this locus) the poet's speculation. Do not get me wrong, he may well have lived up to that death and gotten burned that way, but there is nothing like any claim of eye-witness that he rose and was later taken up to Heaven.

Look how big the contrast is with Christ according to the Gospels:

Q. 408***. What do we mean when we say Christ rose "glorious" from the dead?

A. When we say Christ rose "glorious" from the dead we mean that His body was in a glorified state; that is, gifted with the qualities of a glorified body.

Q. 409. What are the qualities of a glorified body?

A. The qualities of a glorified body are:

Brilliancy, by which it gives forth light;
Agility, by which it moves from place to place as rapidly as an angel;
Subtility, by which material things cannot shut it out;
Impassibility, by which it is made incapable of suffering.

Q. 410. Was Christ three full days in the tomb?

A. Christ was not three full days, but only parts of three days in the tomb.

Q. 411. How long did Christ stay on earth after His resurrection?

A. Christ stayed on earth forty days after His resurrection, to show that He was truly risen from the dead, and to instruct His apostles.

Q. 412. Was Christ visible to all and at all times during the forty days He remained on earth after His resurrection?

A. Christ was not visible to all nor at all times during the forty days He remained on earth after His resurrection. We know that He appeared to His apostles and others at least nine times, though He may have appeared oftener.

Q. 413. How did Christ show that He was truly risen from the dead?

A. Christ showed that He was truly risen from the dead by eating and conversing with His Apostles and others to whom He appeared. He showed the wounds in His hands, feet and side, and it was after His resurrection that He gave to His Apostles the power to forgive sins.

Q. 414. After Christ had remained forty days on earth, whither did He go?

A. After forty days Christ ascended into heaven, and the day on which be ascended into heaven is called Ascension Day.

Q. 415. Where did the ascension of Our Lord take place?

A. Christ ascended into heaven from Mount Olivet, the place made sacred by His agony on the night before His death.

Q. 416. Who were present at the ascension and who ascended with Christ?

A. From various parts of Scripture we may conclude there were about 125 persons -- though traditions tell us there was a greater number -- present at the Ascension. They were the Apostles, the Disciples, the pious women and others who had followed Our Blessed Lord. The souls of the just who were waiting in Limbo for the redemption ascended with Christ.

If, as Acharya claims, this was not the original Christian witness and belief - how could anything like the Krishna story change that much and into that? Neither Hercules nor Krishna are anything like parallel.

Hans-Georg Lundahl



Srimad-Bhagavatam / Bhagavata Purana, canto 11, gives the same version, basically: there is no visible ascension. All about Krishna's ascension into the highest abodes of the gods is theological conclusion or poetic prophecy rather than witnessed fact. I am not sure if the text means Arjuna buried him along with the Yadu dynasty, or whether it means he just disappeared totally, but either way no ascension is verified by human eye-witnesses. Therefore, once more, the Ascension of Christ is not a plagiarism of Krishna's disappearance.

canto 11:30

A quote indicating that this might have been before the Flood:

"You and your relatives should not remain in Dvārakā, the capital of the Yadus, because once I have abandoned that city it will be inundated by the ocean."

If this is so, there may have been quite a lot of mistakes in the transmission between the Tower of Babel and the final Hindoo writings down - with Srimad-Bhagavatam / Bhagavata Purana and Mahabharata disagreeing on detail, it would seem. A rumour of invisible ascension to Heaven may reflect the known one of Henoch. But of course Henoch did not want to be worshipped. The massacres of the Yadu dynasty or the battle of the Bharatas or both may reflect the general demoralisation before the Flood./HGL