The Pagan Christ: Is Blind Faith Killing Christianity? by Tom Harpur

By Tom Harpur

an intensive, ground-breaking exam of the position of historic fable within the origins of Christianity, demanding the belief of the Gospels as historic fact - it's going to switch the best way many take into consideration faith, religion, heritage, fantasy and belief.

for hundreds of years, the church has taught us that the Bible is a literal illustration of tangible occasions and folks from millennia in the past. yet is it attainable that the occasions within the Bible by no means happened - that every one these humans by no means existed?

In a piece bound to rattle the pews of even the main liberal of church buildings, ex-Anglican priest Tom Harpur contends that Christianity is outfitted on a background that didn't ensue, upon a chain of miracles that have been by no means played, and on allegories scavenged from the lessons and myths of historic cultures.

lengthy sooner than the arrival of Christ, the Egyptians and different historic societies believed within the coming of a messiah, in a Madonna and her baby, a virgin beginning, and the incarnation of the spirit made flesh. Civilisations as different because the Persians and the Aztecs shared an analogous non secular doctrine as Christian church buildings this day, lengthy ahead of the testaments have been purportedly recorded as heritage. in keeping with Harpur, the early Christian church permitted those historical truths because the very tenets of Christianity and set approximately protecting up all makes an attempt to bare any parts of the Bible as myth.

What all started as a trust method with the capability to remodel the religion of hundreds of thousands has been twisted via blind literalism right into a mind-numbing culture of unquestioned trust in allegory and ritual.

As he reconsiders a life of worship and research, Harpur eloquently finds a cosmic religion outfitted on common truths. His message is apparent: our blind religion in literalism is killing Christianity and dividing religions; just a go back to an inclusive trust method the place Christ lives inside of each one folks will store it.

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Bidayuh Matters: People, Places, and Fieldwork This book is not a comprehensive survey of “the Bidayuh” but a particular portrait of a Bidayuh community at a particular point in time. Before outlining its content, however, I would like to linger on a few features of Bidayuh life and my fieldwork that will lend shape, color, and analytical salience to the chapters that follow. 10 My doctoral fieldwork took place over 14 months from 2004 to 2005 and has since been supplemented by once- or twice-yearly visits of between two weeks to three months from 2006 to 2010, as well as regular trips to the Singai region (2003–2010) and more recent work (2007–2010) in four villages in the Padawan area: Taba Sait, Pain Bojong, Semban Teleg, and Rejoi.

This brings us to an important methodological and analytical point. In the following chapters, the village will crop up constantly as a conceptual and descriptive unit. By using it thus, I do not mean to reify Kampung Benuk as that artificially bounded, homogeneous Village of classical ethnography, but to mirror my acquaintances’ own tendency to talk about it as a distinctive place and their key unit of corporate identity and belonging. During fieldwork, I was struck by their manifest keenness to assert how different Bidayuh communities were from each other—and, by implication, how much better Benuk was than anywhere else.

They thus have the “object-dissolving” (Robbins 2003: 193) effect of subtracting everything Christian from Christian conversion, including the fact that it can “impose some radically new sociocultural models on [its adherents] . . in ways that are broadly comparable cross-culturally” (Whitehouse 2006: 296). To redress this perceived imbalance, Robbins advocates a return to theologies, meanings, ideal models, and structures—in short, to Christianity as a culture and “a meaningful system in its own right” (Robbins 2004: 3), which is able to “hold its shape as its travels” (Robbins 2001a: 7–8).

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