Merry Christmas everybody, depending on what that means to you and yours. You can substitute it with a good ole “Saturnalia” if you’d like, or some other term. Let me take this opportunity to thank you again for hanging out here and making this whole forum an enjoyable and edifying one.
So, Jesus. Who was he?
Some commenters here are mythicists; personally, I am not.
My thoughts are that Jesus was a real and existent person – probably an itinerant preacher who attracted some dedicated supporters. But then he got crucified and cognitive dissonance took over. Perhaps his body was moved to a shallow grave and this caused some confusion and mythologising. I have written extensively on the resurrection accounts. His supporters didn’t reject him outright, but rationalised their firm-held beliefs in light of his death, as we saw with Festinger’s original work on cognitive dissonance.
But here’s the thing. What we know about Jesus from the Bible is so far removed from the original, mortal man that it might as well be myth. In other words, I am effectively a mythicist inasmuch as I take the Gospels to be myth, and the claimed person of Jesus to be myth. They really have no tangible connection to whomsoever the actual Jesus was.
As for his birth… Check this:
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