Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The Greatest Story Ever Sold

The story of Jesus is the largest myth ever perpetrated on humanity.  Imagine, some 2,000 years ago 30 or so people (no one knows who they were or how many there were) told stories by word of mouth of a man who came back from the dead.  The stories were generally accepted by the superstitious populace who added to the Jesus stories other long believed supernatural sagas such as a virgin giving birth, miracle healings and the resurrection of the dead.

A couple of years after the stories of the Dead Man coming back to life swept through the Jewish territories,  a young Jewish Rabbi who made his living killing those who tried to spread the Jesus stories among the Jews surfaced in Israel.  Heading to Damascus, a center of belief in the Jesus stories, this Rabi claims to have had a mystical conversion.  He would no longer kill the followers of the Dead Man, he would join them and take the stories of Jesus to the far corners of the Roman Empire and eventually to Rome itself.  The young Rabbi wrote letters to far off churches in an attempt to standardize the way the formerly pagan people accepted the Dead Man.  Thousands of new believers, risking their lives at the hands of Jews and Romans alike, followed the sign of the Fish and converted to the new belief found in the Jesus Stories.

Some fifty to ninety years later, a handful of zealous believers (again - history does not know who they were) started writing these stories down for people to read.  Although there were many many stories written, including the letters of the young Jewish Rabbi, no one can name the actual authors nor have any of the original manuscripts survived.  Only fragments of copies of copies of copies exist.  But that matters little.

By the second century so many of these stories existed in so many different forms, a group of people decided to gather all the stories together.  They eliminated some of the Jesus stories because they were so preposterous that persons living during their century with their limited IQs and education could not accept them as real.  They changed other stories so they more or less agreed with the version of the Jesus stories which this group believed. Then, whenever and wherever possible, they killed the people who wrote or believed in the abolished stories.

Then in 311 CE another mysterious conversion occurred.   The emperor of Rome supposedly saw a cross in the sky just before a major battle which he won and then he took the followers of the Dead Man under his wing.  In 313 CE, the converted (he was never baptized until he lay on his death-bed) ruler realized the value of the political power held by the Dead Man's people and stopped Rome's barbaric harassment of them and ordered the pagan religions of the Empire be dropped and replaced by belief in the stories of Jesus.  The sign of the fish was replaced by the sign of the cross as the symbol of the new religion.  The small street synagogs of the Jesus followers soon turned into massive and opulent churches similar to where the pagans had worshiped their Gods.  The leaders of the Jesus movement took to wearing the expensive robes, jewels and finery of their pagan counterparts.  And most important of all, the former pagan Roman holidays were converted into holidays celebrating the Dead Man.

In 325 CE this same Roman Emperor called together another group of individuals who by his direction eliminated even more of the Jesus stories that had been collected.  They then rehashed, edited, and revamped those stories that remained and put them together in a book which they claimed held the only true stories about the Dead Man who supposedly came back from the grave.  The Emperor ordered all dissenters killed and many kept their mouths shut for fear of their lives.

Over the past 1500 years, people began to differ in the way they believed the Jesus stories. The first was a priest in Germany who disliked the fact that his brothers in the Faith were selling get out of Purgatory free cards to the populace.  He felt this demeaned the Jesus stories but he maintained the demonic status of the Jews and continued to persecute and kill them wherever his could.  In fact, his published articles concerning the Jews were taken up word-for-word by the Nazi Party when they started to kill Jews.  After a time, these dissimilar groups took to killing one another whenever they perceived a different group did not accept their own particular interpretation of what was referred to as the approved accounts.  So much blood has been spilled by the warring factions of these followers in the name of the Dead Man that it could fill the oceans of the world.  The killing rampage continues on into the present time.

Now there are well over 2 billion people who believe the stories of the dead man.  They belong to over 3,000 different religious denominations spread across the entire earth.  Each claims to have the ONLY "Truth" concerning the Jesus stories;  each claims that their adherents are the ONLY ones who will go to a place to be with the Dead Man forever; and each claims that ALL other people in the world will spend an eternity in suffering and burning torment.  And this originated from spoken stories that have never been substantiated in any way and were handed down to us by a group of 30 or so unknown first century uneducated, superstitious, magic believing decedents of a savage tent-dwelling people's aboriginal God.

An incredible story to be sure.  The question is, why do educated people of the 21st century still believe these obvious myths of uncertain origin?  They have no more factual backing than Joseph Smith's collection of golden plates do.  They have caused the deaths of more people, started more wars, destroyed more marriages, collected more money, devastated more families and made more people rich than any other group of myths ever foisted on a needy and naive people.


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