- Education and Science»
The Other Christs
Isis and Horus/ Mary and Jesus
How many Jesus stories are there?
Here is a brief summary of an ancient story that should sound familiar to every reader. Once upon a time, a child was born who was said to be the savior of all mankind. His birth was heralded by angels and attended by three kings who had followed a brightly glowing star. He grew up to be a great religious leader who traveled from place to place sermonizing and performing miracles such as raising the dead and walking on water. Eventually, the man was crucified and buried, but after three days he rose from the grave. The man is said to have been the Son of God, the Lamb of God, “the way, the truth, and the light.”
I think its safe to say that the vast majority of people reading this story would equate it with the story of Jesus Christ as told in the New Testament of the Bible, which we have all heard before and which many of us take as absolute truth. It is one of the most widely known stories on the planet, and has been for hundreds of years. It is completely logical to assume that the man in this story is Jesus… unless you also happen to be familiar with the story of Horus, the Christ of Ancient Egypt.
Horus is typically a falcon headed deity and god of the sky, the son of Isis and Osiris. He was miraculously conceived after the murder of Osiris by his younger brother Set (God of Chaos in some contexts), and spent his life as a half man half God battling Set to avenge his father and save the Eqyptian people.
While Horus’ life bares little superficial resemblance to that of Jesus, with its epic violence and Shakespearean revenge plot, it is in the tiny details that the enormity of the coincidence becomes clear. Both Jesus and Horus were born on December 25th. Both were miraculously conceived. Both were threatened with death in their infancy, one by Herut, the other by Herod. Both were baptized in rivers at 30 years of age, and both of the characters who performed the baptisms, Anup the Baptiser and John the Baptist, were later beheaded. The coincidences go on and on.
There are dozens of other ancient God-men that bare striking resemblance to Jesus. Mithras, for example, was a god of the ancient Zoroastrian religion of the region that is now Iraq. He was born on December 25th, he was a traveling religious teacher with 12 disciples, he died as a sacrifice for mankind, he rose three days later, and there is even a Eucharistic ceremony associated with him.
Other ancient heroes whose life stories bare remarkable similarities with Jesus are Krishna of India, Attis of Phrygia, and Dyonisus of Greece. Even Quetzacoatl of Mesoamerica resembles Jesus in many ways, including the December 25th birth, the crucifixion, and the resurrection.
The parallels between the stories of the God-men of the ancient world are too numerous to be shrugged off as accidental coincidences. We must accept that there is some sort of correlation, and then begin to examine the nature and implications of that correlation.
Sol, the Mithraic Sun Deity
This information is not, as many have enthusiastically concluded, evidence in itself of the absolute falsehood of Christianity or proof of the nonexistence of Jesus as an actual historical person. Nor is it proof that Jesus was a reincarnation of Mithra, Horus or Dionysus, as others would argue, and it does not necessarily prove that all these stories were copied from some original, true story.
What we do know, is that if these coincidences are the result of religious plagiarism, it is the older religions that are being plagiarized by the newer ones, meaning Christianity would have to have been copying Egyptian theology and not the other way around. Plagiarism, or perhaps a more charitable term such as “the cultural co-opting of previously existing models,” is troublesome in explaining the parallel God-men of the Mesoamericans however, who are commonly believed to have been too isolated to have had any contact with Egyptians, Hindus, Greeks, or Jews.
Some highly intriguing theories have been expressed suggesting that these commonalities are all astrological in nature. The December 25th birthday is associated with the winter solstice, the twelve disciples are the 12 signs of the zodiac, the 3 Kings are the three stars of Orion’s belt which line up with (and therefore appear to be following) the north star Sirius at the time of the winter solstice. The God-man is the Sun, which battles darkness throughout the year, reaching the trough of its winter descent under the constellation of the Northern Cross, and then rising to claim victory over darkness again and again.
It is widely known that astrology played an important part in most Ancient religions, yet modern Christians balk at the idea that it could have played a role in the formation of their Religion. It is most commonly believed to be a bogus mix of religion and science with scant support from either institution. More radical Christians view it as an evil pagan tradition and a gateway to Satanism. To the reader who accepts this point of view, I would suggest examining these claims yourself with your own bible, paying special attention to numbers and dates, and keeping in mind the adage, “The Devil is in the details.”