Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

Abrahamic religion, you know, the one with the cross...

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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#301  Postby Matt_B » Oct 02, 2013 5:21 pm

Ian Tattum wrote:Could that work as a radio play? :) Both better than the Buddha though because everything that would interest a modern audience happened before he became the Buddha! ;)


You'd just have to do the Buddha in flashback, Citizen Kane style. :grin:
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#302  Postby Moses de la Montagne » Oct 02, 2013 6:30 pm

Ian Tattum wrote:
Could that work as a radio play? Both better than the Buddha though because everything that would interest a modern audience happened before he became the Buddha!


Muhammad's life would doubtless be a failure as a radio play. It cries out for a cinematic treatment. In terms of interest, though, I think Jesus is topped by Mo as a character, and trumped just slightly by the Buddha as a sage dispenser of philosophy or doctrine (personally, I'll take Seneca over either one of them). Seneca might even rival Muhammad for being interesting: tutor to the young Caligula, adversary of Messalina, sexually licentious, glibly atheistic, and an elegant writer of self-denying stoical doctrines despite him likely being something of a sensualist himself. And, like Jesus, a bloody death: but with none of that awful "there is no remission of sins without the shedding of blood" business. With all the serenity of Socrates putting the cup to his lips, Seneca obediently slit his wrists and died in a warm bath.

Again, altogether much more fascinating than the gospels.
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#303  Postby Animavore » Oct 02, 2013 6:44 pm

Byron wrote:
Animavore wrote:Could Jesus be the personification of the uninteresting number? :ask:

:lol:

Give that man the Templeton Prize!



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I'd like to thank my mother and father for putting up with me. My extended family for influencing and encouraging my free thought. The Irish education system for giving me opportunity. The great scientific minds of the twentieth century whose writings have inspired me and whose discoveries have improved out lot on the planet. The authors of fantasy and science fiction whose works have helped me dream. And Bill from up the road for not ratting my to the cops that time.


Have I forgotten anyone? :ask:
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#304  Postby archibald » Oct 02, 2013 7:06 pm

Moses de la Montagne wrote:
Ian Tattum wrote:Why, we could even discuss Jesus as a literary figure, which would stop us getting bogged down in endless arguments whether we are dealing with biography, history, or religious fiction?


As a literary figure, though, is Jesus really that interesting? Him being celibate, there isn't any romance; and the conflicts are mostly only to do with internecine Jewish squabbles. You do, of course, have the slightly tragic aspect of his dying young (that is, if you ignore John 8:57).

I think Muhammad's biography has far more literary qualities. You've got Arabian raiders on fleet horses attacking caravans in the desert, led by a mystic prophet who occasionally retires into caves to commune with the angel Gabriel, and who has a vast and varied sexual history, ranging from a woman nearly twice his age to a child of nine or ten. There's even an apocryphal story that he was absurdly fond of cats. He cut off a sleeve from his cloak so that his cat could remain asleep on it when he got up to go to prayer; he and the cat even drank from the same bowl.

Sadly, Muslims won't allow for visual depictions of Muhammad's life, but I think it would make a much better movie than all the dull togas-and-sandals retreads of the gospels. I could pitch it to a producer.

    "Look, Gene, this could work. The elements are there. First, you've got the epic, panoramic sweep of the desert; the dust and the dunes—the beauty of that endless expanse and unremitting sun."

    "Yeah, okay. Like Lawrence of Arabia."

    "I was thinking Bab'Aziz, but sure. Then we've got the exotic sensualism of the Oriental world: you know, droning Arabic music and voluptuous, raven-haired, olive-skinned women with entrancing eyeshadow—and anklets and bangles."

    "Exotic, hmm? That might be nice."

    "Of course it would. Sofia Vergara could be Khadija."

    "Who's Khadija?"

    "His first wife. But Muhammad himself is the most interesting character: this bold, eccentric, enigmatic, lustful, and charismatic prophet who brings every aspect of his follower's lives under the umbrella of God's authority. Part Mani, part Caesar."

    "Kubrick always wanted to make a biopic of a great leader like that. He was going to do Napoleon."

    "This makes Napoleon look like Lucas. But the best part is the caravan raids! You've got all the excitement of a train-robbery western. This has war, politics, softcore porn, and religion. How can you lose?"

    "I'll tell you how. Fatwahs."

    "True. That could be a problem."


It deserves to be made one day. Maybe when the oil money runs out they'll be more prepared bend the rules.

If I were you, I would try to copyright the idea now, if you can. :)
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#305  Postby archibald » Oct 02, 2013 7:13 pm

nunnington wrote:

I think the human propensity towards eschatology, or if you will, utopian schemes, is pretty interesting. It seems to run through both religious and political movements. See, as I mentioned earlier, the French Revolution, the development of Marxism, and subsequent revolutions, the various exceptionalist dogmas found around the world ('our country is especially favoured'), the role of patriotism and nationalism, and so on.

Whether or not humans have cured themselves of this is an open question. I do doubt it.


I'm not sure if the connection between eschatology and patriotism/nationalism or even Marxism is all that strong, but maybe I'm just not seeing it.

On the other hand, yes, I agree with you that 'end of the world' type stuff does seem to be endlessly fascinating. One could make a very long list of blockbuster movies which deal with it, and it has seemed to me that there are more of these than there used to be, but I say that without having done a survey.

Perhaps......it's a metaphor for our own mortality, which, in the movies, is usually averted, with humanity triumphing and continuing on.........
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#306  Postby MarkP80 » Oct 02, 2013 11:24 pm

trubble76 wrote:
MarkP80 wrote: Thankfully, like my crack addiction, I was also able to get rid of my god addiction.


That's an interesting parallel. Is it poetic license or is it a genuine comparison in your experience?

A little of both, I think.
While I said it poetically, my belief in God could be viewed as an addiction.
An addiction to not think for myself and, as they say, let go, and let God.
Many times in my life, where I needed to seriously think about things and which directions to take, I would simply leave it up to God.
As Jesus says in one passage, paraphrasing:
God takes care of the birds, so don't worry about tomorrow, God will take care of it for you.

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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#307  Postby redwhine » Oct 03, 2013 8:28 am

MarkP80 wrote:Many times in my life, where I needed to seriously think about things and which directions to take, I would simply leave it up to God.

I'm betting god chose what you would have chosen, in the same way he hates whoever you hate. ;)
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#308  Postby MarkP80 » Oct 04, 2013 1:35 am

redwhine wrote:
MarkP80 wrote:Many times in my life, where I needed to seriously think about things and which directions to take, I would simply leave it up to God.

I'm betting god chose what you would have chosen, in the same way he hates whoever you hate. ;)

What I'm trying to say is, just like with crack, where it was easier to just not think about the consequences and get high, so it was with certain points in my life, where I was sure god had a plan for me, so I didn't need to think to much about it.
Had I applied rational thought to these decisions, instead of just putting my life in God's hands, the outcome could have been very different.

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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#309  Postby Cito di Pense » Oct 04, 2013 6:07 am

MarkP80 wrote:Had I applied rational thought to these decisions, instead of just putting my life in God's hands, the outcome could have been very different.


The Free Will thread called. They want your un-lived life back. You didn't live it, but it's still lying under the couch, like some library book you forgot to return.

Never let anyone call you fatalistic.
Хлопнут без некролога. -- Серге́й Па́влович Королёв

Translation by Elbert Hubbard: Do not take life too seriously. You're not going to get out of it alive.
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#310  Postby redwhine » Oct 04, 2013 6:18 am

MarkP80 wrote:
redwhine wrote:
MarkP80 wrote:Many times in my life, where I needed to seriously think about things and which directions to take, I would simply leave it up to God.

I'm betting god chose what you would have chosen, in the same way he hates whoever you hate. ;)

What I'm trying to say is, just like with crack, where it was easier to just not think about the consequences and get high, so it was with certain points in my life, where I was sure god had a plan for me, so I didn't need to think to much about it.

Precisely. That way you get to abdicate all responsibility for the outcome. If it goes tits up, you have a celestial scapegoat to blame; not your fault at all. If things go well, what a wonderful imaginary friend you have looking out for you.

How did god reveal his contingency plan to you? (Burning bush? E-mail? In a dream?)

MarkP80 wrote:Had I applied rational thought to these decisions, instead of just putting my life in God's hands, the outcome could have been very different.

At least you admit that putting things in god's hands was irrational, but how could you tell the difference had the outcome been different?
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#311  Postby Monas » Oct 04, 2013 6:24 am

redwhine wrote:
MarkP80 wrote:Many times in my life, where I needed to seriously think about things and which directions to take, I would simply leave it up to God.

I'm betting god chose what you would have chosen, in the same way he hates whoever you hate. ;)


My experience was that after coming to faith I started, slowly, to make different decisions to those I was making before. Something changed (for the better).
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#312  Postby redwhine » Oct 04, 2013 6:38 am

Monas wrote:
redwhine wrote:
MarkP80 wrote:Many times in my life, where I needed to seriously think about things and which directions to take, I would simply leave it up to God.

I'm betting god chose what you would have chosen, in the same way he hates whoever you hate. ;)


My experience was that after coming to faith I started, slowly, to make different decisions to those I was making before. Something changed (for the better).

Do you have any examples? (...before and after?)

(For example; before, would you not stone your children to death for being cheeky, and kick your slaves to death immediately rather than them dying after surviving for three days?)
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#313  Postby Moses de la Montagne » Oct 04, 2013 6:40 am

Monas wrote:My experience was that after coming to faith I started, slowly, to make different decisions to those I was making before. Something changed (for the better).


You're still here? Some people have no shame.

So do these "different decisions" include the bizarre decision to represent yourself on the internet first as a Catholic, then as a Quaker? First as an ethical vegetarian, then as an indecisive omnivore? Do you consider this kind of sockpuppetry to be honest in the eyes of the Lord? It's puzzling as to why you'd even decide to do this stuff in the first place; it's not like you were banned or anything.

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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#314  Postby Fallible » Oct 04, 2013 7:18 am

Well all that needs to happen is for someone to ask him about sock puppetry in every thread. Since he never replies to those enquiries he'll end up with nowhere to post.
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#315  Postby Alan B » Oct 04, 2013 9:14 am

What's all this got to do with whether or not 'Jesus the man' was 'interesting'?
Discounting all the interpretations and invented fairy stories by later authors, there is very little known about him, if anything at all.
It can be assumed (tentatively) that the Sermon on the Mount was his teaching (someone must have said it) and since this 'message' can be found in the works of other thinkers from earlier times, it indicates that this Jesus fellow (if indeed it was he) was not unique in his thinking. This also indicates that this Jesus had no 'Godly' attribute since the Christian/Jewish 'God' can only be unique.
Philosophically, a Son of Man? Perhaps. But then that could also be said of other like thinkers in previous ages...

Son of God? Bollocks! That is a later addition to the the general myth(s) invented by later writers wishing to 'over-egg-the-pudding' and later confirmed by the orthodoxy.

There is also the possibility that some other scribe was aware of these earlier teachings and added Jesus to the list to further 'over-egg-the-pudding'.

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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#316  Postby Animavore » Oct 04, 2013 9:22 am

Well I did say Jesus "as portrayed in the Bible". Not Jesus as a man. I meant the character that we read on the pages of the gospel.
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#317  Postby Animavore » Oct 04, 2013 9:26 am

I'm reading about John, who wrote Revelation, from the book A History of the End of the World: How the Most Controversial Book in the Bible Changed the Course of Western Civilization by Jonathan Kirsch.

Now there's an interesting character with a story to tell. Both envious, lustful, power-driven and mad as a box of Johnny Rooks.
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#318  Postby Alan B » Oct 04, 2013 9:42 am

Animavore wrote:Well I did say Jesus "as portrayed in the Bible". Not Jesus as a man. I meant the character that we read on the pages of the gospel.

Yeah. OK.
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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#319  Postby THWOTH » Oct 04, 2013 10:40 am


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Re: Does anyone actually find Jesus interesting?

#320  Postby trubble76 » Oct 04, 2013 10:48 am

MarkP80 wrote:
trubble76 wrote:
MarkP80 wrote: Thankfully, like my crack addiction, I was also able to get rid of my god addiction.


That's an interesting parallel. Is it poetic license or is it a genuine comparison in your experience?

A little of both, I think.
While I said it poetically, my belief in God could be viewed as an addiction.
An addiction to not think for myself and, as they say, let go, and let God.
Many times in my life, where I needed to seriously think about things and which directions to take, I would simply leave it up to God.
As Jesus says in one passage, paraphrasing:
God takes care of the birds, so don't worry about tomorrow, God will take care of it for you.

Sent from my SGH-T889 using Tapatalk 2


I've always thought of that part of Christian teaching as very silly. Even as a child, I realised that nobody takes care of the birds except the birds themselves. Birds die all the time, they only live for as long as they can feed themselves. It is the perfect demonstration of the indifferent reality of existence.
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