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Carrier on Spirituality 
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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
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This isn't EVEN a question.

But if one MUST entertain those that question the existence of the historical Jesus, the burden of proof is obviously on the mythicist, considering the UNANIMOUS scholarly field is in that the historical Jesus walked the earth.


This is a bit mixed up. The burden is obviously on the side making the ontologically positive claim - which is that Jesus existed. In this case, you are saying the burden is fulfilled, as consensus is unanimous. It's a valid question. I'd also point out that Unanimous is not the same thing as a majority. Even a majority is not as strong as an overwhelming majority.

I'm not an all an expert here and am not on either side of the debate, but I was under the impression that criticisms against said consensus were valid because the actual methods of determining historicity were shown to be faulty. I could see how this would occur, with the historical field having bias towards sacred beliefs.

In trying to find a neutral source that was highly informative, I found this paper: http://www.academia.edu/1825948/Did_Jes ... cholarship

It is thorough and has many references, even if it is written by a self-proclaimed student. Have a read.

*edit - your copied text also shows that the methods are possibly faulty.


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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
This is really a pathetic attempt to argue about "majority" and "unanimous" when it's clear that scholarship agrees and that there is very little scholarly support for anything else.

Geo's question was a fine example of being ignorant of what scholarship has to say about the historicity and agreement re Jesus' existence.

Interbane's post is a fine example of arguing simply for the sake of argument -
AND ignoring the fact that a short time ago he said he believed global warming was caused by man because the consensus agrees that that is the case, yet the consensus re the historicity of Jesus does not matter - it's a reasonable to doubt here.
But yet, there are experts that doubt global warming is caused by man. So what?


This is totally cheap and disingenuous talk.
The booktalk philosophical atheists have lowered themselves lower than I thought possible.


Excuse me while I go laugh my ass off.



Thu Sep 18, 2014 6:18 pm
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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
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This is really a pathetic attempt to argue about "majority" and "unanimous" when it's clear that scholarship agrees and that there is very little scholarly support for anything else.


You're speaking to me as if I've seen this survey, or whatever it is that shows evidence of a majority(show me what you're referencing). I'm going by the words in your post. Nothing else is obvious to me. And it's not splitting hairs to say that a majority doesn't mean unanimous.

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Interbane's post is a fine example of arguing simply for the sake of argument -


And people play chess for the sake of playing chess. If you want to refine your worldview, you debate ideas. Is this wrong?

Quote:
AND ignoring the fact that a short time ago he said he believed global warming was caused by man because the consensus agrees that that is the case, yet the consensus re the historicity of Jesus does not matter


The consensus is a small thing compared to the evidence with regards to climate change. If that's all we're left with is authority, even the 97% figure might not be enough to sway me. Is that the percentage of scholars that believes Jesus was historical? What do I make of the claims that methods regarding historicity are flawed?

Get bombastic and ascerbic all you want ant, but I'm asking legitimate questions.

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This is totally cheap and disingenuous talk.

Ugh! From one of us at least.


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Thu Sep 18, 2014 6:31 pm
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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
ant wrote:
Geo's question was a fine example of being ignorant of what scholarship has to say about the historicity and agreement re Jesus' existence.

Ant, you might want to try Xanax sometime.

I’m aware that historical scholars do accept Jesus as a historical figure as I’ve said on this forum before (and even on this very thread just a couple of pages back).

I’m simply asking from a philosophical perspective, why is the burden of proof in this case on those who are making the claim that Jesus is a mythical figure instead of those who argue that Jesus is a historical figure? Off the cuff I’d suggest that both are actually positive claims, and so both sides have the burden of proof. How’s that for the King Solomon touch?

Consensus of historical scholars is actually quite compelling except that I suspect most historical scholars would agree there’s no ironclad evidence either way. I’d like to see where any historian says that Jesus was definitely a historical person and here’s the evidence that supports it. I think there’s a general assumption that Jesus was historical, but without that absolute and ironclad evidence, it remains a fair question. Fortunately we don’t have to come down on one side or another unless we are somehow emotionally invested in one side being true (even if the evidence doesn’t fully support it). Here's where motivated reasoning can come into play. Inventing a truth if a definite answer is not available.


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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
See here for some examples of motivated reasoning.

http://www.skepdic.com/motivatedreasoning.html

As the article says, motivated reasoning is confirmation bias taken to the next level. Motivated reasoning is also very much emotion-based.

Here's a sort of mind experiment using Robin Hood. Almost everything we know about Robin Hood is a myth. We know "Robin Hood" was a generic term for outlaws in the region for a couple of hundred years. But today scholars aren't sure if there was a real Robin Hood who actually inspired the legend or not. There simply isn't enough historical data to substantiate the Robin Hood legend one way or another.

No imagine, if you will, that folks believed Robin Hood was a god and not just a guy who robbed from the rich and gave to the poor. This would likely change the historical perspective considerably, wouldn't it? You would expect there to be a lot of fanaticism around the Robin Hood figure and stories invented that demonstrate Robin Hood’s very godness. Maybe even a religion would spring forth from these beliefs in Robin as deity.

More importantly, the historical accounts of Robin Hood would become much more dubious.

Such is the case with Jesus. The case for Jesus-as-myth seems much more plausible when you consider that almost everything we know about the man comes from texts widely believed to be the sacred word of God—actuallythe predominant cultural belief for well over a thousand years. So the difficult task is now separating the fact from fiction as we do with Robin Hood. But unlike Robin Hood, the historical record for Jesus also says that he was the son of God and the saviour of all mankind. Hmm, good luck with that!


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Last edited by geo on Thu Sep 18, 2014 7:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
I tried finding the source of the consensus, and most hits I found kept tracing back to a book by Mark Allen Powell. This makes me more curious. Is there a way to show an authoritative source here? I've assumed the vast majority of scholars agree that there was a person behind Jesus. I've never tried looking into it until now.

Quote:
Off the cuff I’d suggest that both are actually positive claims


I think you're right.


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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
Ill just say a last few words on this for it has become a pathetic display of irrational bias with a tone of desperation. The desperation that is nearly always present in the end of conversations by new atheists desperate to argue about a god that "doesnt exist" because of a lack of evidence and faulty logic.

To mearly question the scholarly criteria used to establish the existence of figures from antiquity is not enough. You must present your own criteria and advance your thesis from that point forward.

Scholars who "question" the current criteria are welcomed to this.
The same invitation is extended to the big mouthed layman who buys a book written by a self proclaimed scholar with a BA in who knows, reads it, then says the historical jesus was a myth.

Having said that, kindly post your own criteria here on this thread.
You can compare yours to the professional historians criteria utilized to date.
Google it or search for my post wherein I outlined it for discussion.

While you work on your own criteria, you can occupy yourself by reasoning in the same fallacious manner mythicists do and systematically remove other historical figures from antiquity to be even handed about this.

Not presenting your own criteria while dismissing the consensus in place and expecting to be taken serious is like a weight lifter wanting to be admired for his muscles but not willing to do the heavy lifting required.

This antichrist neurosis is pathetic.

You dont get points for dismissing scholarly criteria without presenting a set of discovery thats superior.
You actually get points subtracted from you if you are just being dumb about the matter.
You get laughed at for saying flowery things like its reasonable to doubt someone's ontological existence when your obviously singling one particular individual from antiquity.

Stop trying to spread subtle hysterical antichrist stupidity by dressing it up as reasoned argument. It's getting criminal.



Thu Sep 18, 2014 8:47 pm
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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
Ill just say a last few words on this for it has become a pathetic display of irrational bias with a tone of desperation. The desperation that is nearly always present in the end of conversations by new atheists desperate to argue about a god that "doesnt exist" because of a lack of evidence and faulty logic.

To mearly question the scholarly criteria used to establish the existence of figures from antiquity is not enough. You must present your own criteria and advance your thesis from that point forward.

Scholars who "question" the current criteria are welcomed to this.
The same invitation is extended to the big mouthed layman who buys a book written by a self proclaimed scholar with a BA in who knows, reads it, then says the historical jesus was a myth.

Having said that, kindly post your own criteria here on this thread.
You can compare yours to the professional historians criteria utilized to date.
Google it or search for my post wherein I outlined it for discussion.

While you work on your own criteria, you can occupy yourself by reasoning in the same fallacious manner mythicists do and systematically remove other historical figures from antiquity to be even handed about this.

Not presenting your own criteria while dismissing the consensus in place and expecting to be taken serious is like a weight lifter wanting to be admired for his muscles but not willing to do the heavy lifting required.

This antichrist neurosis is pathetic.

You dont get points for dismissing scholarly criteria without presenting a set of discovery thats superior.
You actually get points subtracted from you if you are just being dumb about the matter.
You get laughed at for saying flowery things like its reasonable to doubt someone's ontological existence when your obviously singling one particular individual from antiquity.

Stop trying to spread subtle hysterical antichrist stupidity by dressing it up as reasoned argument. It's getting criminal.



Thu Sep 18, 2014 8:48 pm
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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
Ps

Its obvious motivated reasoning is a huge part of this groups weak arguments re the historicty of Christ
Considering several of you exist here mainly to debunk religion in general, Christianity in particular, is more than enough evidence to cast doubt on your emotional states while attempting to argue about this.

But of course since you all are green vulcans, you arent capable of emotional motives.

Yes, of course.



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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
Gary Habermas is another source for the consensus. He is referenced often as having done a head count of scholars who agree that Jesus was historical. With confirmation bias going at full steam, I found this: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/crossexami ... -habermas/

Quote:
Considering several of you exist here mainly to debunk religion in general, Christianity in particular, is more than enough evidence to cast doubt on your emotional states while attempting to argue about this.


I think the only one that takes a hard stance on these forums is Robert. Even then, pointing to what motivates him doesn't mean his conclusion is wrong. If recent posts are any measure ant, you're the one in a questionable emotional state.


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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
Yes I do take a hard stance on the non-existence of Christ, because it is obvious that the early church corruptly used the actual gnostic construction of the myth to construct a false political literalism and suppress the real fictional origins of the story. But that is far from an anti-Christian stance on my part, since I see recognition of this basic historical truth of the depraved political invention of the literal Christ by the orthodox as the only way to rehabilitate Christianity into a coherent and sensible ethical and epistemic doctrine.


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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
What I find strange here, is that Carrier can't see the absurdity of the things he is asserting from his academic soapbox.
This is, that Paul and the early Christians hallucinated an incorporeal spiritual being who was crucified,buried and resurrected in outer space!
Later, mysterious hacks then "euhemerised" the fictional accounts of an alleged historical person complete with (diligently googled) historical data. These shadowy figures freely borrowed a potpourri from pagan religious myths,and epics from Homer et al and whatever you're having yourself.
Carrier also references a work by one Dennis Ronald Mac Donald, not to be confused with his more famous namesake from the culinary world, who proposes heavy drawings and parallels from Homer's epics.The said Mac Donald I have learned from an informed source, derived his name from a popular ballad about a mythical boy named Sue.
This author wrote a weighty tome titled "Does the new testament imitate Homer?" which Richard found felicitous to his marvelous thesis.
Richard cites examples from this but the question that is mildly troubling, is whether Richard imitates Homer Simpson,Ronald Mac Donald or a happy amalgam of both?
In the interests of scholarship,truth and rigorous thinking,I feel it my duty to alert a deceived public to a learned treatise by the scholar Richard Whately,titled; "Historic doubts related to Napoleon Buonaparte."
http://www.gutenberg.org/files/18087/18 ... 8087-h.htm



Last edited by Flann 5 on Fri Sep 19, 2014 12:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
ant wrote:
Ill just say a last few words on this for it has become a pathetic display of irrational bias with a tone of desperation. The desperation that is nearly always present in the end of conversations by new atheists desperate to argue about a god that "doesnt exist" because of a lack of evidence and faulty logic.

To mearly question the scholarly criteria used to establish the existence of figures from antiquity is not enough. You must present your own criteria and advance your thesis from that point forward.

Scholars who "question" the current criteria are welcomed to this.
The same invitation is extended to the big mouthed layman who buys a book written by a self proclaimed scholar with a BA in who knows, reads it, then says the historical jesus was a myth.

Having said that, kindly post your own criteria here on this thread.
You can compare yours to the professional historians criteria utilized to date.
Google it or search for my post wherein I outlined it for discussion.

While you work on your own criteria, you can occupy yourself by reasoning in the same fallacious manner mythicists do and systematically remove other historical figures from antiquity to be even handed about this.

Not presenting your own criteria while dismissing the consensus in place and expecting to be taken serious is like a weight lifter wanting to be admired for his muscles but not willing to do the heavy lifting required.

This antichrist neurosis is pathetic.

You dont get points for dismissing scholarly criteria without presenting a set of discovery thats superior.
You actually get points subtracted from you if you are just being dumb about the matter.
You get laughed at for saying flowery things like its reasonable to doubt someone's ontological existence when your obviously singling one particular individual from antiquity.

Stop trying to spread subtle hysterical antichrist stupidity by dressing it up as reasoned argument. It's getting criminal.


Who are you talking to here?


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Fri Sep 19, 2014 3:16 pm
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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
Flann 5 wrote:
What I find strange here, is that Carrier can't see the absurdity of the things he is asserting from his academic soapbox.
This is, that Paul and the early Christians hallucinated an incorporeal spiritual being who was crucified,buried and resurrected in outer space!
Later, mysterious hacks then "euhemerised" the fictional accounts of an alleged historical person complete with (diligently googled) historical data. These shadowy figures freely borrowed a potpourri from pagan religious myths,and epics from Homer et al and whatever you're having yourself.
Carrier also references a work by one Dennis Ronald Mac Donald, not to be confused with his more famous namesake from the culinary world, who proposes heavy drawings and parallels from Homer's epics.The said Mac Donald I have learned from an informed source, derived his name from a popular ballad about a mythical boy named Sue.
This author wrote a weighty tome titled "Does the new testament imitate Homer?" which Richard found felicitous to his marvelous thesis.
Richard cites examples from this but the question that is mildly troubling, is whether Richard imitates Homer Simpson,Ronald Mac Donald or a happy amalgam of both?
In the interests of scholarship,truth and rigorous thinking,I feel it my duty to alert a deceived public to a learned treatise by the scholar Richard Whately,titled; "Historic doubts related to Napoleon Buonaparte."
http://www.gutenberg.org/files/18087/18 ... 8087-h.htm


I'm a little confused. Are we talking about Carrier's book here? If not, I would suggest starting a new thread that includes the source material which you are attempting to debunk.


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Fri Sep 19, 2014 3:18 pm
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Post Re: Carrier on Spirituality
geo wrote:
I'm a little confused. Are we talking about Carrier's book here? If not, I would suggest starting a new thread that includes the source material which you are attempting to debunk.
s
No problem Geo,
I think I'm finished with his Jesus myth stuff anyway.
If he can't see that the writings of Paul don't jive with his theory,that's his problem.I indulged in a bit of satire in my last post.I just don't think it's worth the effort since it would be obvious to anyone from Mars who read the texts that the meaning is clear and plain.
He has a couple of talks on youtube,one on I think titled;Why Jesus never existed? Another on the book of Acts but I forget the title.
As I say,I don't have much more to say about this really.



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