The Mythological Origins of Christianity Pt. 1 of 3
The Mythological Origins of Christianity
–Part One of Three–
By Thomas Keane (DoubtingThomas)
“The Hebrews merely used for their poetic imagery the characteristic beliefs of the people to whom they made direct reference.” — E. E. Goldsmith (from Ancient Pagan Symbols, p. 94)
“The religion of the Masters – the Babylonians and Assyrians – was transferred almost bodily into Christianity.” — Madame Blavatsky
Far from “the word of God”, the bible is simply a collection of stolen pagan mythology. The story of Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden were taken from the Babylonian account. The Hebrew word Eden comes from an old Babylonian name for Mesopotamia, Gan-Eden, the garden of the Middle East. Noah’s Flood is just one of around four hundred flood accounts and the equivalent of the Ark and Mt. Ararat can be found in many of them. Even the names given to Noah’s sons are not original. And the recycled mythology continues with Moses, who is clearly fashioned after the Syrian Mises, and the ‘laws’ found in Exodus are obviously influenced by Hammurabi’s code. Egyptian scriptures even supplied the biblical Messiah. Between Jesus and the Egyptian Horus there are hundreds of similarities, much like those between Christ and Krishna. One of the oldest known civilizations, the Sumerians, were one of the first to keep a written record of their beliefs. The similarities between the stories written on these surviving clay tablets and the ones contained in the bible are so striking and so numerous it would be easier simply to direct you to a few websites that thoroughly catalog the parallels. You can find them here: 1, 2.
And let’s consider the numerology that is so prevalent in the bible. The bible is Hebrew mythology and this is why so many events in Jewish history take seven days or take place on the seventh day or year and require forty days or years to occur. SEVEN appears in the bible (KJV) a total of 668 times and the number FORTY appears a total of 158 times. Seven is the word for week in Hebrew but the world/universe being created in seven days fable is by no means original as almost every ancient cosmology was based on it. The Greeks believed their gods created the world in a week of seven days, and in the Hindu Purânas, Brahma does the same. You can find the names of these seven days in Hindu manuscripts as early as 5,000 B.C. And it wasn’t the Hebrews who first made the seventh day a sacred day. Hesiod (eighth century) said, “The seventh is the sacred day.” Plato wrote: “The gods, pitying the laborious nature of men ordained for them as a rest from all their labors, the succession of religious festivals.” The first of these was every seventh day. The sun god Apollo had the seventh day of every month dedicated to him, thus Sunday. Even the word Sabbath didn’t originate with the Hebrews. Derived from the Babylonian word Sabattu, meaning day of rest, it was observed by the Babylonians long before the Hebrews adopted it.
And consider the “tree of life”. Every ancient race has had its “tree of life.” Zeus gave the Hesperides a tree that bore golden apples (Gogard). Zeus placed Ladon, a serpent, at the base of the tree to guard it; with the Norse it was Yggdrasil, the ash, at the foot of which was Nidhogg, their serpent. For the Tibetans, the “tree of life” was Zampun, and with the Persians, it was Homa. The Hindu god, Siva, sent a fig tree to woman and prompted her to tempt her husband with the fruit. She obeyed, telling the man it would grant him immortality. After the man ate, Siva cursed him. “The mundane tree of life” was symbolized by the oak tree with the Druids. Even the Chinese had their “tree of knowledge,” Sung-Ming-Shu.
Even the name Adam is not Hebrew in origin. Adam Adami can be found in Chaldean scriptures that predate those of the Hebrews. Among some ancient Babylonian clay tablets an account of creation identical with that of the bible was found. The name of the first man? Adamu. And in The Prophecies by Ramutsariar, a Hindu book predating the bible by two thousand years, the creation myth is again almost identical. And the name of the first man? Adama. Oh, and the name of the first woman? Heva. Strange how the authors of the bible thought that simply removing a single letter was enough to lay claim to another’s work. This is the reason why one shouldn’t confuse the Ethiopia of the bible for the African Ethiopia. Return the A to the front of the word and you discover it comes from the Greek Aethiopia (mythic land of darkness and mystery).
So the God of the bible put Adam to sleep and removed a rib (bone) to create woman? Nothing new there. According to the Tahitans, their god, Taaroa, “put men to sleep for long ages,” and he also took a bone (Ivi) from man, and it became a woman.
Regarding Noah’s Ark, the word ark is Egyptian. It means a chest or box for preserving something sacred. Another idea that is by no means original; the Hindus had their Argha, the Greeks, their Cista, the Argonauts, their Argo. And don’t forget Pandora’s box. And the numbers in this story are obviously symbolic. Seven, seven, seven, seven, seven, seven. So many sevens.
And let’s consider Noah sending forth a raven and later three doves while seeking signs of land’s return. The Babylonian Noah, Utnapishtim, sent a dove, then a swallow, and finally a raven. The Babylonian ark rested on Mount Nisir, the Hindu ark on Mount Himalaya, and the Greek ark on Mount Parnassus. And the word Ararat, or Arath, is the Aramaic source of the word earth.
When Noah and his crew finally find dry land, they quickly build an altar and start making sacrifices to God. First, which animals were sacrificed? In other words, which animals were rendered extinct by this reckless and needless slaughter? The bible says God both saw and smelled these sacrifices and was pleased by their “sweet savor” and thus came the covenant with Noah to never again destroy the earth by a deluge. But to make sure he didn’t forget (!) his promise, God made a rainbow in the sky as a reminder. So, are we supposed to believe that the basic law of refraction hadn’t operated before this? So no rainbows resulted from the interaction of the sun and the rain in Adam’s day, not to mention during all those endless “begats”?
Zeus, Jupiter to the Romans, also became offended with his own creation. He also decided to drown them all, sparing only Deucalion, and Pyrrha, who had “found grace” in his eyes. He allowed them to escape in a boat which finally landed on Mt. Parnassus. The Babylonian account can be found on the tablets of Assurbanipal. Here Enlil, again, also offended by man’s wickedness, decides to destroy him with water, but Ea, the god of wisdom, learns of Enlil’s plan and tells a man, Utnapishtim, about it. Like Noah, Utnapishtim is tenth in line from the first man, and walks with Ea. Ea tells him to build a enormous boat, one that will hold he and his family and also, you guessed it, all the beasts and birds and creeping things. And as soon as it was finished it began to storm, a storm so great that even the lesser gods “trembled in fear.” It stormed for six days and nights and on the seventh it stopped. The boat floated around until it finally came to rest on Mount Nisir. It should be noted that Mt. Nisir sits between Medea and Armenia, making it practically identical with Ararat. Utnapishtim also sent out a dove, swallow, and raven when seeking land. He also built an altar upon making land and offered incense upon it. And, yes, the gods smell the “sweet savor” and gather around; and, Ishtar, “the lady of the rainbow,” hung out her multicolored necklace.
With the Persian and Hindu myths it is not physical birds and beasts that are brought into the ark but their seeds – “… (take) the seeds of sheep, oxen, men and women, dogs, and birds and every kind of tree and fruit, two of every kind, into the ark seal it up with a golden ring and make in it a door and window.” An avatar of Vishnu warns the Hindu Noah, Vaivasvata, about the flood and tells him to build a vessel for his family and bring on board plant seeds and a pair of animals. After the flood the boat comes to rest on Mount Himalaya. And the number of days the storm lasted coincides exactly with the number in the Hebrew account.
The Tepanecans of Mexico also reported a great flood that lasted exactly forty days and nights. The Society Islanders say the god Tangaloa, again angered by the wickedness of man, created such a mighty flood to punish them that only the mountaintops remained. And according to Inca mythology, the god Viracocha promised by the rainbow to never drown mankind again. And Bochica, a god of the Chibehas of Bogota, perched on a rainbow and quelled the flood. And even among the Jews there were additional Deluge myths; one depicting an angry God scalding the sinful antedilvians.
Many bible believers would try and argue that these other accounts were copied from the Hebrew account, however, it should be noted that the Chaldean, Hindu, Babylonian and Egyptian accounts predate the Hebrew versions by many centuries.
Also consider the names of Noah’s sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Taken from Maurice’s history of Hindustan: “It is related in Padmapooraun that Satyavrata, whose miraculous preservation from a general deluge is told at large in the Matsya, had three sons, the eldest of whom was named Jyapeti, or Lord of the Earth; the others were Charma and Sharma, which last words are in the vulgar dialects usually pronounced Cham and Sham …” In The City of God, St. Augustine uses these same forms, also Chanaan for Canaan.
Following the flood a man named Nimrod wanted to build a tower (tower of Babel) out of anger at God for drowning the race. He didn’t believe God would keep his promise (why would he) and thought there could be another mass murder. To quote Josephus verbatim: “He wanted to avenge himself on God for the destruction of his ancestors (weren’t they spared in the ark?) thus: he would build a tower so high that the waters of another flood, with which the world might be afflicted, would not be able to submerge it.” The Babylonian parallel ends similarly: “But all this they did only from fear of another deluge.” Even the name Babel (gate of God) came from the Akkadian Summerian Babili, about 3900 B.C., and means Gateway of God, one with the Greek “Gateway of the gods.”
Bible believers think the scriptural Pharaohs were three Egyptian kings. The fact that outside of the bible there is no account of these specific kings, particularly the cruel Pharaoh, doesn’t seem to bother them. There is also no record of Joseph, Moses, or even the captivity. The bible depicts Moses as practically destroying Egypt, yet if this were literally true, there should be some record of these events but there are none. And why is it that no direct reference to the Exodus can be found among any Egyptian inscription?
Speaking of Moses, this is another myth that is shared by many other mythologies. As depicted in the Orphic hymn to Bacchus, Mises was also found in a box floating upon the waters. Also, like Moses, Mises’ laws were written on … wait for it … two slabs of stone. Again like Moses he had a rod that he worked miracles with, and what could the rod turn itself into? That’s right, a serpent. Mises uses his rod to divide the rivers Orontes and Hydastus and he even strikes a rock with it to provide water for his thirsty army. The Egyptian Osiris was also put in a coffer or coffin and set adrift on the river Nile. Moses was discovered and raised by Thermuthis, which was also the name of a serpent sacred to Isis. The Greek lawgiver, Dionysius, was said to have held up two tables of stone on which the law was engraved.
Hammurabi of Babylon, a contemporary with Abraham, was given a code of laws by Shamash, the great sun god, which he delivered to his people. This code predates the Mosaic code by more than a thousand years. Regarding this similarity, I. Elliott Binns remarked: “The variety of cases provided for is much greater than in the Mosaic codes, but where they deal with the same matters there is an extraordinary similarity in their ordinances, especially in phraseology.” Was it the biblical God or this older code that was the source of the Mosaic code? The answer seems obvious.
The Egyptians, whom the Jews believed to be morally inferior, in fact had a well-developed sense of morality. You can find evidence of this in the Egyptian “Oath of Clearance,” which contains six of the ten commandments and existed thousands of years before the Jews were ever heard of.
It reads in part as follows:
I have not committed fraud and evil against men.
I have not diverted justice in the judgment hall.
I have not caused a man to do more than his day’s work.
I have not caused a slave to be ill-treated.
I have not taken milk from the mouths of children.
I have not stolen cattle.
I have not been weak.
I have not been wretched.
I have not been impious or impure…
This is the end of Part One.
Part Two can be found here:
Please visit my main page (http://doubtingthomas426.wordpress.com/) to gain a better understanding of where I am coming from. There you will find all my observations regarding religion and the bible categorized on the Right hand side of the page. Please feel free to read through them and leave a comment or two if you like.