We pick up one year later
I had spent that year, ever busy, musing on idea that the Christmas Story could never have happened. As the holiday season rolled around again, I found myself back in front of the computer, excited to write my story again, focusing on what Jesus had said that made him special. I had thought of a new angle to the story.
Remember seeing the movie Gandhi
when it first came out? I remember the crick in my neck from straining from the second row of the movie theater with my best friend. Anyway, I thought about how Gandhi was a product of his environment. If the British hadn't been exploiting the poorest of poor Indians, would Mahatma Gandhi have had the platform to talk about nonviolent protest? At least in the Hollywood version, he practically single-handedly threw the British out of the country! So my theory was that during Jesus' time, a war or oppression was going on. Off I went in search of his historic context.
I looked and looked and looked. I couldn't find it. I couldn't even find a "just the facts, ma'am" view of history in the Middle East around 1 A.D. What was the relationship between the Jewish people and the Romans? Were there burdensome taxes, oppressed peoples, social inequities, anything? Even the PBS history site called that timeframe "The Beginnings of Christianity" or some such without the details needed to set the stage.
I finally found Earl Doherty's Jesus Puzzle
. The Preamble lists the authors who over the past two hundred years have doubted that Jesus ever existed. That rekindled a memory from CCD
, being told that some people believe that Jesus never existed, and I remember feeling sorry for them. (By the way, I also remember a time when I felt sorry for people who ate sushi, I couldn't understand why someone would choose to eat raw fish!)
I could go on and on and might in other posts about what I learned once I had Earl Doherty's writing to work from. In a nutshell, he proposes that if one wants to find out about Jesus, your ONLY source is the bible, the problems with using the bible as a reference source, then uses said bible to chase the ghost. He can't find a real person, son of a god or not, in it.
I can't tell you how shocked I was. Incredulous, I researched his theories and read like a maniac.
Jesus was a mythos.
The pebble that fell a year earlier started an avalanche in my mind. I had to go back and reconsider from this new perspective.
Imagine the silence after an avalanche has completed its thundering, the rubble being the framework I had used to understand the world.
Now I feel the cool breeze on my cheek, my eyes are clear and I can see for a hundred miles.
Where I sit now, it might seem a bit lonely, but it's sure peaceful.
Continued a bit more here