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Was Jesus an Essene?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Feb 2018 at 22:13
You're just jealous because they made it that far, and you (and I) won't:P

But seriously, it was not until recently that the "literal" reading of the Bible came into vogue.  I can understand you getting hung up on passages in Genesis, most people starting at the beginning don't necessarily get any further.  We have Babylonian seal stones that depict a man, a woman, and a serpent, the flood story is in cuneiform sources.  No, those did not "literally" happen, but they do reflect the Babylonian, probably Sumerian and even earlier? cultures world view.
The rules in Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy are more sophisticated versions of ancient codes like the Hammurabi Code.  Whereas, the Exodus probably did not happen that way, much of the historical figures in Judges, and Kings are demonstrated by archaeology.  There probably was a real Abram who got sick of the Babylonian gods, rule by committee, and set out on his own.  David and Solomon existed and so did the kings listed after them.  The Babylonian captivity happened and so did the Israelites return.
Much of the historical data has been confirmed by inscriptions and archaeology.  I would suggest that you not get snared by the miracle stories, when looking at the whole.  Now of course, such an account is full of all kinds of biases and slanted stories in all kinds of directions.  But, I would suggest that you don't throw out the baby with the bathwater.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Feb 2018 at 12:30
So do you think Jesus was an Essene? Why?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Feb 2018 at 01:54
In my opinion, Jesus was _not_ an Essene, but he may have had that background and been building on it.  Just like Jesus was not really a follower of John the Baptist, but according to the gospels, used John as a "springboard" for his own teachings.
I feel that it is certain that Jesus knew about the Essenes, and that he knew more than just a superficial acquaintance.  He could have formerly been an Essene, but I think that that conclusion goes beyond the evidence.  The evidence does not contradict it, but it does not confirm it either.  At least the evidence that I have looked at so far, synoptic gospels, and Josephus' comments about the Essenes.  I have not tried to crunch the Dead Sea Scrolls, which is too much effort for too little potential reward.  Josephus calls the Essenes 'Pythagoreans.'  But looking at the synoptic gospels, Jesus is not a Pythagorean but may be playing off of, and against some of their sayings.  Sayings which admittedly, we are not sure were "Pythagorean," because a lot of stuff was later attributed to Pythagoras and/or the Pythagoreans long after their time.  

To say that Jesus was an Essene would be like saying, Spinoza was a Cartesian, or Marx was a Hegelian.  It may help one understand Spinoza if one knows Descartes, but Spinoza's mature writings don't require it.  It may help one understand Marx if one looks at Hegel and his dialectic, but it is not necessary.  It is just that some things will probably be less obscure if you understand where Marx got it, not that I am wishing Marx on anyone.  I think Marx is a mistake, on the other hand, we have to study our mistakes before we can learn from them.


Edited by franciscosan - 16 Feb 2018 at 02:09
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Feb 2018 at 14:28
http://essene.com/History/PythagorasAndNazareans.html

It doesn't make sense that Jesus would be a 'casual' Essene. No one was casual about becoming an an initiate. Maybe he exceeds the Essene's understanding and moves on to the Abraham/Moses level of mind.

Or maybe he never had to be taught anything spiritually, learned Judaism from an oral history.

If you are going to pick and choose what is "known" about Pythagoras, might as well throw out the lot. We don't know anything factual about Pythagoras. Consider what the Nazarene Essenes have in common with him.  
The root of all desires is the one desire: to come home, to be at peace. -Jean Klein
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 Feb 2018 at 02:11
"casual" would not be my word choice.  To pull in a very different example, the Athenian playwright Aeschylus was accused of revealing the mysteries.  Aeschylus proved that he was not initiated into the mysteries and therefore could not reveal them in his plays.  Then all of a sudden the accuser became the accused for the accuser had to reveal the mysteries in order to accuse Aeschylus.  I think of Jesus as someone who was immersed in the flow of the culture, that he would have figured out teachings of the Essenes, not in the sense of factual knowledge, but just having the sense of where they were coming from. Of course, being at that level he could communicate with others on their level as well.  It is like if I was Tom Clancy (author of Hunt for Red October), submariners would be dying to talk to me, for I could tell them something about submarines that even they don't know.  They would assume that I (Tom Clancy) would know more about Submarines than I know and would be free in conversation.  

So I don't know what Jesus' relationship/connection to the Essenes would be, but I would think that he would blow them away with the level of his consciousness.  But, I also think that if he was connected to them, that would not necessarily show up in writings about him (the Gospels).  Remember that he was controversial to the point of being executed, if he was a friend of the Essenes he (or his followers) would not necessarily say so, lest they bring down the Romans on them.

We know a lot about Pythagoras and the Pythagoreans, it is just that because of a few miracle stories, the baby gets thrown out with the bathwater.  A portion of those stories are impossible, I mean _logically_ impossible.  Pythagoras was said to cure a man of murderous rage by playing the lyre and singing, in Tauromenium.  Problem is, Tauromenium wasn't founded until 150 years after Pythagoras.  Stories like that, could be it got garbled in transmission, but I don't think so.  I think that details tell anyone sharp that the story is, let us say, a 'colorful' one.  Other stories having meanings as far as Southern Italian history, that Pythagoras converted the "Daunian" bear (Daunian tribesmen), or destroyed a serpent in Lucania (Sybaris) and a small one in Etruria (the Etruscan Roman kingship.)

Remember that Pythagoras is also around the time of the beginning of history.  So not having a firm (or any) grasp of history, they would probably talk figuratively about enemies being serpents, or threatening barbarians being bears.  Pythagoras is about 532 BC, Herodotus "the father of History" settled in Thurium after it was founded, it was founded in 443 BC in Southern Italy.  There are a few people significant for the development of history before Herodotus, but not many.
But we know a lot more about Pythagoras and the Pythagoreans, then we think we know.  However, for a lot of things, we are uncertain.  We don't, in the famous words of that philosopher Donald Rumsfeld, "know that we know."  We have a lot of information, but don't know what to make of it.


Edited by franciscosan - 18 Feb 2018 at 02:44
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Feb 2018 at 23:53
Josephus writes about John the Baptist, and about the Essenes, but he never refers to John the Baptist as an Essene.  I could imagine that someone recounting the story of a controversial figure like John the Baptist, might not want to associate him with the Essenes, lest the Essenes also become controversial.  I am not saying that is what happened, I am saying that one could imagine that there may have been reasons why, in a society where the truth can get you killed, for not telling everything.

But I mentioned Josephus on John the Baptist and on the Essenes, because it is ancient evidence that calls into question modern speculations that John the Baptist was an Essene.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Feb 2018 at 03:32
If it were a question of Josephus vs the gospels of Matthew and Mark (?) who do you find more reliable?
The oldest extant text from J., is 11th century. Matthew is 70 AD, Mark has the earliest record of the death of John the Baptist and the Q source is obviously older being the spoken word source. :)

Some people have observed that Philo and Josephus give contrasting descriptions of the Temple at Jerusalem. A focus (or lack of) on numerology, specific symbolism and different interpretations of symbolism. Such as Bread, Tree of Life, vestments and traditions.

Yes there are lots of reasons to leave things out. How to wrap one's head around an ancient author's clues and omissions?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2018 at 00:30
Q source was a _written_ source of sayings, compiled from oral sayings.

The earliest copy of Matthew is probably 5th-6th century.  Codex Vaticanus or Codex Sinaiticus.

For theology, I would trust Matthew or Mark, the Gospels are not meant to be historical, for history, I would trust Josephus, but not completely.  Josephus is kissing up to the Romans, his work is skewed, but so is any work of ancient history.  I don't know how it compares to Philo, but Philo is a ?philosopher?, not a historian.

We have a relatively free society, where one can say just about anything (although not without consequences), that is not true of antiquity, the Middle Ages, or even most societies today.  The writer has to write in a style that often conceals the true meaning of what they are saying in order to get around the reality of a closed society, and persecution.  The reader, on the other hand, has to "read between the lines" in order to get the true meaning of the writer.  Censors, on the other hand, tend to be stupid and take things at face value.  The writer will often instruct the reader how to read his work.  Dialogues are very useful in exploring an issue, while at the same time concealing the writer's intention in writing the dialogue.  A censor, for example, will assume that one character, (such as Plato's Socrates), represents the true opinion of the author, whereas it can be more complex than that.  The writer will sometimes vehemently criticize opinions that are out of favor by the censors, but in the process, the writer "has to" state and explain what he is criticizing.

Another example, is Russian literary criticism.  Ostensively, the critic is doing an interpretation according to xyz theory of, say, Pushkin, but in doing so the writer brings up an understand of the contemporary situation, in USSR.

The Gospels are something different, I am not sure that there is an exoteric/esoteric element to the NT, or for that matter, the Gospels.  I am not sure, definitely certain sects believed in an esoteric Jesus.

Leo Strauss has written several essays related to this subject, "Persecution and the Art of Writing," "Writing between the Lines"? "Exoteric Writings" ?  (exoteric teachings??)  One thing to remember about Strauss, Strauss's interpretation is probably self-reflexive.  The interpretation that he propounds in his writings, should probably be applied to his own writings.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Feb 2018 at 14:53
Ok right, no idea that oral histories were eventually written down, only you held that information. Guess that's why you get the big bucks. Philo is irrelevant but do bore us with Plato. Funny the religious philosophers of first century Egypt weren't irrelevant when you bleating about Origen and Clement. 
Ah, Consistency. Or is it intellectual dishonesty?


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Mar 2018 at 00:34
In scholarship "Q" is a hypothetical source, a written copy of oral sayings.  Q is not "the spoken word source,"  Tom, Dick or Mary is the spoken word source.  I just want to make sure that you are not confused, Vanuatu.<grin>  But, really, there is a search in Biblical scholarship to get as original as you can get.  This is protestant thang, Protestant wanting to get back to early Christianity, whereas Catholicism and Orthodox are mediated (in Protestant eyes) by the Church Fathers.  "Q" meaning Quelle, comes from the German word for "source," they would love to be able to claim an oral source, because that would be more originary than a written source.  That is why I nitpick and correct you.  The "Q" document would be the holy grail of biblical scholarship, if it existed.  The Gospel of Thomas probably comes the closest.
I am not saying that Philo is irrelevant, I am saying I don't know much about him, but I do know that he is not a historian.  He is Jewish, and he is doing philosophical things with his background, just as Origen and Clement are Christian, but Neoplatonists.  I think Philo is also a Neoplatonist, but Jewish in background and his interpretation. obtw, since you asked about Origen and Clement, you should note that while they are Church Fathers, they were not saints.  In other words, in their teachings they taught some things that were later rejected by the canon of the Church.  Origen also cut off his 'nads.  Trying to get away from the temptation of sex or something like that.  Ouch, it hurts just saying that!  I like Clement, I stay away from Origen, especially if he has sharp objects.  btw, Philo also is probably considered a Platonist, but I am not sure about that.
I am afraid that I am just not as omniscient as you obviously expect me to be.  As Dirty Harry says, "a man's gotta understand his limitations."  I do have a limited bag of tricks, and tend to repeat them.  Sorry:(
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Mar 2018 at 13:12
So to recap;

the oral tradition could have been written by "Q" source as many agree it's a possibility

Philo is releveant to the story of the Essenes

Most scholars reject Josephus' mention of Jesus as historical fact

Religious philosophers are only relevant to the development of the faith, not factual historical information.
Is that it?
The root of all desires is the one desire: to come home, to be at peace. -Jean Klein
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Mar 2018 at 22:15
No, the oral tradition was not written, the written tradition was written.  The oral tradition was probably somewhat fluid, until it was copied down and instantiated.  The "Q" document is theoretical.  In other words, it is some thing (or some things) that scholars hypothesize, but we don't know if there was such a thing (or things) in reality.  But, I am just having fun with you, Vanuatu, just like you are having fun with me.Wink  But in any case, Q did not write the oral tradition....Clap

I have read 'of' Philo, but I have never really read him, if you say he is relevant to the story of the Essenes, I'll take your word for it, and I may chase down references sometime.  There is a Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit coming to Denver in March.  I think I have an abridged collection of Philo.

Actually scholars do not reject "Josephus' mention of Jesus as a historical fact." they reject that it was Josephus who mentioned it and consider it an addition, a note in the margin that later got added to the text.  Whether it reflects anything historical is another question.  <grin> I know you know that (and you know that I know that you know), I am just giving you a hard time.LOL

Shopping lists give historical information, historical information can be gleaned from just about anything.  Although sometimes doing so misses the point.  Like when people trade the Truth for a few random facts.  So yes, Philo can be used as a historical source, but I am not sure whether doing _only_ that would do justice to Philo.  It could be like reading the Hebrew Bible (OT), in order to pick out interesting baby names.


Edited by franciscosan - 02 Mar 2018 at 22:22
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Mar 2018 at 23:38
It's all in fun most assuredly. Wink
Shopping lists and garbage heaps, mass graves too ooze data. Were there ever any remains found at Masada??
 
First, maybe I've mentioned that I grew up strict Catholic, Holy Days, Confession and all the rest including school.
The Christians I knew took a dim view of Josephus. He is the historiographer who is also an apologist that left out key parts of the OT in Antiquities of the Jews. Not to the approval of my associates. Guess I thought Christians were in line on that one. I'm not sure how much Josephus confirms about Jesus.(?)
So, Philo supports what Josephus says about the Essenes and adds more details. Which make Josephus more credible as an -historian. Yet who can say who wrote in the bit about Jesus?
As you said -Jesus' so called missing years were not spent as an Essene- if you accept Philo:
 Thus no Essene is a mere child nor even a stripling or newly bearded, since the characters of such are unstable with a waywardness corresponding to the immaturity of their age, but full grown and already verging on old age, no longer carried under by the tide of the body nor led by the passions, but enjoying the veritable, the only real freedom.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2018 at 00:32
There are some written remains (papyrus or parchment) from Masada.  The writing style (letter shape, etc) is very useful because it can be correlated with remains from Qumran, and therefore certain documents can thus be stylistically dated.  I don't know what exactly from Masada is preserved.

When Josephus entitles his work, "Antiquities of the Jews," he is kind of appealing to the Roman veneration of the old.  I think some ancient Jews would have considered a Quisling (or the ancient equivalent).  He, on the other hand, would consider himself a realist, facing the reality of Roman power.  Explaining the Jews to the Romans, but also at the same time implicitly explaining the Jews to themselves, and the Romans to the Jews.  He also places Judaism within the Western Greco-Roman tradition of history.  Yes, the Jews have a particular history of their own, but Josephus places them in the tradition of Herodotus, Thucydides, Livy, Julius Caesar, Tacitus, etc.

Josephus is not a Christian, and he does not have a Christian agenda.  So people who want support of their religious position are not going to find it being trumpeted from Josephus.

I am probably a pretty poor Christian, got too much pagan learnin' in me.  Also, Jewish teachin's and some Japanese aesthetics.

I think that you can say that the bit (one simple sentence?) about Jesus in Josephus is part of the "manuscript tradition".  It probably got added, possibly inadvertently, and who knows where it came from?

There is an article in a Hershel Shanks anthology, about John the Baptist maybe being a Essene, that I got to read.

Plato said you should be 40 to study philosophy (and yet Socrates is always talking to young men), (or did he say that? Plato's Socrates said that (Republic), but what was Plato's true opinion?).  I believe one should be 40 before studying Jewish mysticism, the Kabbalah.  And, yes one of the advantages of old age is the diminution of the passions. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2018 at 02:28
Quote I think that you can say that the bit (one simple sentence?) about Jesus in Josephus is part of the "manuscript tradition".  It probably got added, possibly inadvertently, and who knows where it came from?

Actually it's a bit more than that one sentence. I don't think the Last Supper and the Essene communal meal are easily separated.

 Josephus may have considered himself to be following in a tradition of writers, conquered people, seeing a way to preserve their ethnic past without annoying the occupying force.  It would have been a deliberate appeasement right? No accidental obfuscating. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2018 at 03:43
Josephus was a survivor, and he wanted his people to survive.  He was originally a 'freedom fighter' going against the Romans.  In my understanding he was in group that did a suicide pact (like Masada), he arranged it so he got the long straw, killed the last guy, and was supposed to kill himself, but he didn't and I think he then surrendered to the Romans.  I am not sure what you mean by appeasement, but he presented Jewish culture and history to the Romans, probably acknowledging that Rome was meant to rule.  Remember he is after the destruction of the Temple, and the diaspora.  Judaism _had_ to change, enough with these zealots, thinking that Rome would be overthrown by some political, kingly Messiah.  Rome was brutal, and Judaea did not have the wherewithal to stand up against Rome in its prime.  Godly intervention aside.

I haven't checked, but I think Jesus is mentioned once, in passing, and it is considered a scribal addition.  That does not mean there can't be other connections. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2018 at 10:50
In modern day Middle East, the custom of the extended family eating together is still common.

Also, as a mater of Middle Eastern politeness, one should remove their shoes before entering the home, and expect a fairly prolonged conversation, over a cup of tea, about our respective families, our herds and everything but the topic at hand.

Eventually, usually during or after a meal, the business at hand can be discussed, in the absence of the women and children.

What's changed in over 2000 years? Nothing.

The point I'm making is that one need not have been an Essene to partake of a communal meal.

Membership of various sects or groups waxed or waned, dependant on the local Government (Roman) permissions, and the pharisees, whose influence also waxed and wained from being a religeous group, militant political group and finally, a convention of learning.

It was also mentioned in a previous post that Jesus disappeared from the records for a number of years. 
 
In recent years, speculation has arisen that Jesus, during the missing 18 years, travelled extensively through the Middle East perhaps as far as India, China and/or Japan. It has aslo been speculated that he visited Europe, including England, speaking with and learning from the scribes.

So far there has been little evidence to corroborate these trips, but it is said that written records and artefacts exist in India and perhaps China.

But this remains speculation. Various artefacts located, while giving an slight indication this the travelling could be true, I'll wait for the truth-proven.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2018 at 13:55
There is a highly devoted cult to Jesus in Japan. Not exactly our idea but very interesting.
The Essene communal meal was ritualized it is different in the sense that the a person was selected to lead the meal make the appropriate blessings, drink or eat first and pass along the food.
Very much has changed in our food culture. I don't say we have completely lost the intimacy of the communal meal but it ain't what it used to be.There is more on the meal ritual for later.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2018 at 01:10
Have you heard about the (Italian) slow food movement?  But of course, it is the set up of the whole entire society that calls for the fast food culture.  To do slow food, you have to have the time, which, oddly enough, greater convenience and more time savers means less time.

Jesus probably never left Palestine.  The exception in the Bible being Egypt, but Joseph went to Egypt and Moses returned, so I wonder if the Gospels are just evoking the travels of the Jewish people.  No, I know toyomotor, we can't be sure.  But I would say it is beyond a reasonable doubt.  Of course, Mormons think he got to the New World, along with the lost tribes of Israel.  They are nice myths, and by that I don't mean anything so crude as being false.  I don't believe in the Ark of the Covenant or the Holy Grail (at least not the Indiana Jones version), but on the other hand, if such things 'exist' they don't depend on my belief.  You might say I don't disbelieve in it either.

Japan would be a stretch by any imagination, look at where Japan is, in 30 AD, culturally nowhere.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2018 at 03:32
Franciscosan

Quote Jesus probably never left Palestine. 

How do you know? Answer: You don't.

18 years, or thereabouts, he's out of the picture. He could have travelled through Europe or Asia during that time.

Quote  But I would say it is beyond a reasonable doubt. 

How can you say that when there's no evidence either way.

You're entitled to believe, but not state facts without proof.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2018 at 21:54
Are you say there is one block of 18 years, or several blocks of time which add up to 18 years or what?  And how old was he during this time?  If he is three years old or for that matter, thirteen, he probably is not traveling unless his father is a merchant (which he wasn't).

People _could_ travel great distances in those days, but the majority in antiquity (and the Middle Ages) didn't.  At least that is what I have heard.  I don't see why Jesus would be an exception to that rather than the rule.  The Judaic world is his world, although he may have known some Greek.

There _is_ evidence, there are studies of the ancient world, and there are the Gospels.  You toyomotor seem to be assuming that because there is one (or more) big blocks of time in his life, that he must have done _something_ in that time.  But, maybe the gospels don't report that time because there is nothing really to report.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2018 at 23:49
Quote I am not sure what you mean by appeasement, 

Josephus had remodeled Moses, made him something like a hero in Greek myth. He is taking the Jew out of Moses. And conversely, almost penitently, he begins to build the idea of Moses as the Law Giver. At the time the Pharasees  school did not want to exhault Moses unduly. Josephus indicates that most people who knew of Moses did not know what he was to the Law. Moses is made diminutive by some Greek writers they don't mention him as the one who received the Hebrew Law(Hellenacius, Hecataeus, Diodorus) or they call him "Moso the woman" who received the Hebrew Law(Polyhistor).
-Louis H. Feldman Yeshiva University

Defining Moses is a pretty good apology. Feldman doesn't say that Josephus is appeasing anyone. Just an observation, changing the culture to suit the history admits who has power. Securing veneration for Moses as the one who received the Law from God asserts that spiritually Moses and the Jews are superior.  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2018 at 03:12
Franciscosan wrote
Quote Are you say there is one block of 18 years, or several blocks of time which add up to 18 years or what?  And how old was he during this time?  If he is three years old or for that matter, thirteen, he probably is not traveling unless his father is a merchant (which he wasn't).

As I understand it, there seems to be a gap in the recording(?) of Jesus' life from about the age of 14 until about age 30yrs.

If I'm correct, he could have travelled to the Far East and other places. There is apparently nothing to say that he did or he didn't.

Getting back to the OP, if Jesus was an Essene-so what?

And this is not to be taken as an admission by me that there was such a person in history. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2018 at 23:46
There is nothing in Jesus' teachings that show he had familiarity with anything besides Hebrew culture (except to a certain extent, Greek culture which had come to influence Hebrew culture).  He is quoted in Aramaic.  The Gospels are in Greek, but I don't think there is anything that indicates that he knew Greek, unless you count the pun on the name Peter, which only works in translation to Greek, not if it was originally in Hebrew or Aramaic.  (Peter, you are my rock).  It also, very conveniently, endorses the foundation of the Catholic Church in Rome.

I don't think many 14 yo are world travelers, even today, unless they are refugees.  So I would doubt that Jesus would have travelled much before he was 18 or 20.  Also, assume that if he ever left, he would not have been heard about for at least a couple of years before his ministry, so say 28 instead of 30.  The probable window for travel (_if_ he travelled) is more like ten years.  Or so it would seem to me.

But, Jesus traveling around and going to temples and learning local lore, sounds like how Pythagoras is described.  In late antiquity, the pagans put up Pythagoras as a rival to Jesus and to Christianity.  So in imagining that Pythagoras is like Jesus, one also comes to imagine that Jesus is like Pythagoras, a world globe trotter who got wisdom from all kinds of places.

Well, of course, toyomotor, you don't care if Jesus was an Essene, because you don't believe in Jesus, neither as a savior, nor as a historical reality.  But, if you believed in Jesus, you might want to get closer to him (again, either as a savior or as 'just' a historical reality), and one to get closer to him would be to understand whether or not he was an Essene, or influenced by the Essenes.

I don't think Jesus was an Essene, but I do think that Jesus was influenced by John the Baptist, and John the Baptist may have been influenced by the Essenes.  But, I haven't read that article yet, (on J. B.), when I do I will let you know.)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Mar 2018 at 10:51
Franciscosan
The article at http://www-user.slac.stanford.edu/jimstan/quasiconstant.htm is recommended reading for you. The following is only part of the report, and it could answer questions for you, that the rest of haven't been able to explain.

Quote  The logical mind has a strong bias to think in terms of cause and effect.  But to search for a cause for the first effect, the formation of the Universe, leads to a chicken-and-egg conundrum, a synthetic a priori hypothesis.  The time might be ripe to look at some illogical, or at the very least, acausal explanations.

          Here the logical mind has a strong bias to associate “logical” with “true”, and “illogical” with “false”, but Gödel’s incompleteness theorem tells us that there are true propositions which can not be proven within any given logically consistent system.  These propositions are logically discontinuous, or not to put too fine a point on it, illogical but true.    

Consider the universe forming into a flat, featureless, dimensionless, and timeless void.  This is the so-called Big Bang which pops Mass, Energy, Space and Time (MEST) into existence.  In the absence of MEST there is a corresponding absence of physical law.   In the absence of physical law there is nothing to preclude something from happening for no reason.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Mar 2018 at 00:49
yeah, toyomotor, except for in the cosmic sense, I am not sure what Godel has to do with the Essenes....  Chicken and the egg I understand, synthetic a priori is something that I think I understand, but I look away for second, and vipp! it disappears.  Godel is much the same way.  And talking about before the Big Bang Events, well that is above my pay-grade.
I would like to have a basic understanding of Godel, but I don't and I don't really want to _get_ the understanding of Godel.  I have a couple of books, but don't quite know what to do with them. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Mar 2018 at 03:53
But do you understand what I (and Godel) are telling you?

Godel has nothing, per se to do with the Essenes, but read, in part, what the article says,
Quote  Here the logical mind has a strong bias to associate “logical” with “true”, and “illogical” with “false”, but Gödel’s incompleteness theorem tells us that there are true propositions which can not be proven within any given logically consistent system.  These propositions are logically discontinuous, or not to put too fine a point on it, illogical but true.

In other words, there are answers that can neither be proven or disproven, whether or not they seem logical, ergo Jesus could have been an Essene, but maybe he wasn't.



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Mar 2018 at 22:57
Yes, we can read something like that, but what it means to me is something quite different that what it meant to Godel.  I can parrot it, but I have not done the homework to even follow a decent recap of Godel's work.  Godel is probably talking about true propositions in a mathematical system.  Not so much everyday facts.

But one of the fun things about the real world is that you can have people that are both something, and at the same time not something.  In a sense they stand above the categories.  You have these in riddles, "a man who was not a man, threw a rock that was not a rock, that hit a bird that was not a bird, in a tree that was not a tree."  "A eunuch threw a piece of pumice at a bat that was on a reed."  For Aristotle, having something be something A and not something A at the same time is a problem.  In folklore however, you get things like that sometimes. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Mar 2018 at 09:37
So, have we resolved this question?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vanuatu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Mar 2018 at 17:35
Quote There is nothing in Jesus' teachings that show he had familiarity with anything besides Hebrew culture (except to a certain extent, Greek culture which had come to influence Hebrew culture).  He is quoted in Aramaic.  The Gospels are in Greek, but I don't think there is anything that indicates that he knew Greek, unless you count the pun on the name Peter, which only works in translation to Greek, not if it was originally in Hebrew or Aramaic.  (Peter, you are my rock).  It also, very conveniently, endorses the foundation of the Catholic Church in Rome.

I thought we were talking about Josephus as an appeaser? You asked the question about Josephus.
What do mean about Peter? The master/servant personality?
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