Thank God for the defeat of Gnosticism and Greco-Roman paganism

pugsville

Ad Honorem
Oct 2010
9,970
Before Christianity people could believe in different Gods without being wrong. Paganism differnet religious beleifs were mostly tolerant of each other, no one was running around saying the one true belief system and everything else was just totally wrong. In this aspect Christianty is intolerant of otehr beleifs. It;s single megalithic belief system that if it;s true all other religions must be false. Rleigions did not have universalist absolutist claims. Gods were quite flawed, and while worshipped they were not the orgin of laws and set way of behaving. Chrtiatiny god becaome perfect, and quite dictatorial compared with previous gods, he dictated a set of laws, he was all knowing (total nowledge) and all powerfull, (total power) the source of all good things (total goodness) in all his aspects he has totalness. Before christianaity there was not the idea of dctrine and dogma. That people had to sign up to realivitively narrow set of allowed religious beliefs deivation from which was heresy.
 
Feb 2019
669
Thrace
Before Christianity people could believe in different Gods without being wrong. Paganism differnet religious beleifs were mostly tolerant of each other, no one was running around saying the one true belief system and everything else was just totally wrong. In this aspect Christianty is intolerant of otehr beleifs. It;s single megalithic belief system that if it;s true all other religions must be false. Rleigions did not have universalist absolutist claims. Gods were quite flawed, and while worshipped they were not the orgin of laws and set way of behaving. Chrtiatiny god becaome perfect, and quite dictatorial compared with previous gods, he dictated a set of laws, he was all knowing (total nowledge) and all powerfull, (total power) the source of all good things (total goodness) in all his aspects he has totalness. Before christianaity there was not the idea of dctrine and dogma. That people had to sign up to realivitively narrow set of allowed religious beliefs deivation from which was heresy.
Voltaire: "If you have two religions in your land, the two will cut each other’s throats; but if you have thirty religions, they will dwell in peace."

And if you have only one, it becomes an authoritarian regime 😅
 

Dreamhunter

Ad Honorem
Jun 2012
7,544
Malaysia
Your reference to the difference between the ideas of the Pharisees and Sadducees is indeed of importance. This difference is an evidence of the different influences that other religions had on Judaism. But first it must be said that the Sadducees did believe in life after death, albeit in a form other than the afterlife of which the Pharisees were convinced. What we know about the Sadducees comes from sources that were hostile to them. Therefore, it is not surprising that their teaching is distorted on this point. It´s simply not true that the Sadducees thought that the soul dies when the body dies.

Instead their view of afterlife corresponds to the view that also existed in the Babylonian and conventional Greek religion, namely that the soul dawns in a shadow realm without it being exactly clear what consciousness it has in this state. In Judaism this realm is called 'scheol', in Greece it is ´Hades´ and in Babylon 'arallu', the Great Below. The belief in such a shadow realm was at first the actual belief in the afterlife in Judaism, until after the Maccabean revolt in the 2nd century BCE it came to a split into different groups, among them the Sadducees and the Pharisees. The former stem from the pro-Hellenic party, the latter from the rebellious Maccabean party.

There is, from about the 6th century BCE, also the well-known idea that the dead will rise physically in a distant future, but that is not immediately belong to the theme 'afterlife'.

At the time of the division, the teaching of the Persian Zoroaster was already known in Jerusalem. Part of it was the doctrine of the survival of the soul after death, but in a higher and more blessed state than in the shadow worlds of the aforementioned imaginations. The Pharisees had adopted these Persian ideas, but the Sadducees, who adhered to traditional Greek ideas, regarded the Persian idea of afterlife as a betrayal of the Jewish tradition, which was strongly Hellenistic until the Maccabean revolt.

The idea of angels was also adopted from Zoroastrianism by the Pharisees and also rejected as un-Jewish by the Sadducees.
This part sounds quite interesting. Perhaps it could be expanded into a topic on its own, like pharisees vs sadducees, or something along that line.

Just a suggestion, anyway.
 

tomar

Ad Honoris
Jan 2011
14,257
B Chrtiatiny god becaome perfect, and quite dictatorial compared with previous gods, he dictated a set of laws, he was all knowing (total nowledge) and all powerfull, (total power) the source of all good things (total goodness) in all his aspects he has totalness. Before christianaity there was not the idea of dctrine and dogma. That people had to sign up to realivitively narrow set of allowed religious beliefs deivation from which was heresy.
All knowing: physically impossible

All powerful: logically impossible (the famous "can God create a rock he can't move")

All good: contradicts human experience of life (e.g. why does God allow innocent children to suffer)

Which raises the question: did the general intellingence level of the population go down that they accepted such (and many other) premises which clearly made no sense ?