I feel much the same about Christianity, as I was first raised Lutheran and then after my mother became "born-again", a series of evangelical churches, one verging on a cult. I walked away at 14, alienated from the sheep-like adults and their petty tyrant children (who weren't also sheep.)

I agree too, much of what ails America is a spiritual sickness. Dropped in a meaningless void is not a recipe for mental health. Nothing about modernity is designed for health, physical or mental. Maybe your notion about Caesar has merit. I have wondered at times, will something wholly new be birthed in the America's. Not wholly new, necessarily, but something distinctly America? On that I wonder about the European magical traditions, folk magic here, and something birthed out of the land.

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It doesn’t help that the Bible is simply horribly written. Honestly. Anyone who goes on about the sublime poetry of the Bible is talking nonsense.

Josquin, Bach, Mozart, Michelangelo, Raphael, Donne, Milton, and Eliot might disagree with you.

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For me, the Gospel of Mark reads like somebody's college lecture notes. Matthew and Luke have more coherent narratives.

The portion of the Bible I find to be most verifiably miraculous is the Law of Moses itself. The Law contains a recipe for something very akin to anarcho-capitalism. No jails. No standing armies. The only stated duties of the paid bureaucrats (the Levites) were ceremonial and enforcing some public health regulations.

The Law includes a welfare system which isn't dysgenic. Indeed, there is more Darwinism in the Old Testament than there is in our modern universities. The Biblical welfare system gives recipients plenty of incentive to get their acts back together. Ditto for property criminals.

The Law has some very interesting rules against rent-seeking, including some subtle points which Henry George and his followers miss bigly. The Jubilee law ensures a large supply of rednecks with a stake in protecting the nation. I vaguely recall a passage in Jeremiah indicating that the rich were holding onto their estates vs. ceding back rented land back to the people. You cannot stave off empires with professional soldiers. Judah fell. (And we are falling in part for a similar reason. Nixon changed farm policy in ways that did in most small family farms. We lack a sufficient number of rednecks to be a militia backed republic.)


There are few historical examples of societies which successfully mixed civilization and something resembling anarcho-capitalism. David Friedman cites Viking Iceland. Murray Rothbard cited medieval Ireland prior to conquest by the English. Both of these examples were islands. Israel during the time of the Book of Judges was surrounded by other nations.

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A lot of the reason for the Bible being boring is the modern translations sperg out on precision and is mealy-mouthed so as not to offend, murdering the transcendence and flow of the text. There's also a lot of symbolism and nuance in the text that is ignored because the Priests feel the need to dumb down the more mystic aspects and often don't understand it themselves. A good Priest could spend years going into the nuances of the story of Jonah, but they are mostly, simply put, boring uninterested people.

I get it, and will just add that any Christian group whose first reaction to a priestess is not laughter and derision has zero connection with the Christianity of the ancient world, let alone 100 years ago.

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Mar 18Liked by John Carter

I shared much the same feelings about bible. I grew up as an atheist. And was an atheist and a sceptic until my 30s.

Now I chose to believe in God. In higher force. and i also believe the Truth is accessible to each one from within. Truth can be found in many places. Including in Holy books. But they are not the source of it .

When I started being spiritual and looked at religions from a fresh perspective. There are tidbits of wisdom which could be found in Bible .

But the real gist is old testament ( torah basically). If you are jewish and read it as they do( and they do read, on chapter every week , completing in a year. And next year again) - its a very profound layer of identity and culture.

I have some Jewish blood. But not a lot. And its not my identity.

So I passed on that. i passed on other organized religions as well. Currently spiritually i am closer to vedic dzen Buddhism than to anything else.

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I've said it before and I'll say it again, I'm sold. My only concern is that my Christian brothers and sisters might be more discomforted by this than my atheism.

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Fascinating take on this theme, and extremely well written! I do think there's some great stuff in Psalms and Ecclesiastes (including ideas that seem to contradict traditional dogmas rooted in other parts of the Old Testament), and Paul is an incredible thinker and writer; but there is plenty of chaff among all those pages of scripture, especially in the Torah portion. The Gnostic idea about the OT god being a demon masquerading as the real God adds an interesting twist, though sometimes I wonder (half seriously) whether the Gnostics were demonically controlled opposition (their teachings seem to have been influential with some sketchy New Age/Human Potential types, and they seem to have attracted a similar crowd back in their own day). That said, I find myself going back to some of the ideas in the New Testament, including the gospels and Revelation, and thinking there are some deep insights about evil there, including strong indications that the devil is the god of this world, that demons routinely subvert good religious movements and turn them towards evil, that humans and their leaders are often the useful idiots of dark spiritual powers (including many religious leaders who have a reputation for being "godly"), etc. I'm still not sure what to make of that. Much of it rings true, but not in the way it is traditionally taught and understood in the church.

Anyway, you (and Rolo Slavskiyy and LP Koch) have given me some good food for thought! Thanks for that!

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Mar 17Liked by John Carter

You're such a good author. I love reading your stories.

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Mar 18Liked by John Carter

Climb out of the Rabbit Hole of Wrongness, John, before it's too late! Seriously, it sounds like you did not have the best experiences with Christianity as a child, and I'm sorry about that. If the spirit ever moves you to investigate traditional Catholicism, you'll find a very different atmosphere, in fact, I almost dare to say a different Faith. Much of what calls itself Christianity these days simply is not. The test is simple, do they stand for the fullness of Christ's teachings? Many churches are stuck in meek and winsome stances. That is NOT the Christianity of the martyrs, the Crusaders, and the saints, nor of Christ Himself. Forget about dumb internet revisionist theories. Embrace your Catholic heritage and go forth and conquer in His Name!

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Mar 18Liked by John Carter

And slowly his hands and thoughtfully,

Fell from the lifted lyre,

And the owls moaned from the mighty trees,

Till Alfred caught it to his knees,

And smote it as in ire.

He heaved the head of the harp on high,

And swept the framework barred,

And his stroke had all the rattle and spark

Of horses flying hard.

“When God put man in a garden,

He girt him with a Sword,

And sent him forth, a free Knight

That might betray his Lord;

He brake Him and betrayed Him;

And fast and far He fell,

Till you and I may stretch our beards,

And burn our beards in hell.

But though I lie on the floor of the world,

With the seven sins for rods,

I would rather fall with Adam,

Then rise with all your gods.

What have the strong gods given?

Where have the ‘glad’ gods led?

When Guthrum sit on a hero’s throne

And asks if he is dead?

Sirs, I am but a nameless man,

A rhymester without home,

Yet since I come of the Wessex clay

And carry the cross of Rome,

I will even answer the mighty earl

That asked of Wessex men

Why they be meek and monkish folk,

And bow to the White Lord’s broken yoke;

What sign have we but blood and smoke?

Here is my answer then.

That on you has fallen the shadow,

And not upon the Name;

That though you hunt the Christian man

Like a hare on the hill-side,

The hare has still more heart to run,

Than you have heart to ride.

That though all lances split on you,

All swords be heaved in vain,

We have more lust again to lose,

Than you to win again.

Your lord sits high in the saddle,

A broken-hearted king,

But our Alfred, lost from fame,

Fallen among foes or bonds of shame,

In I know not what mean trade or name,

Has still some song to sing.

Our monks go clothed in rain and snow,

But the heart of flame therein,

But you go clothed in feasts and flames,

And all is ice within;

Nor shall all iron dooms make dumb

Men wondering ceaselessly,

If it be not better to fast for joy

Than feast for misery.

Nor monkish order only

Slides down, as field to fen,

All things achieved and chosen pass,

As the White Horse fades in the grass,

No work of Christian men.

Ere the sad gods that made your gods

Saw their sad sunrise pass,

The White Horse of the White Horse Vale,

That you have left to darken and fail,

Was cut out of the grass.

Therefore your end is on you,

Is on you and your kings,

Not for a fire in Ely fen,

Not that your gods are nine or ten,

But because it is only Christian men

Guard even heathen things."

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Mar 17·edited Mar 17Liked by John Carter

Where do you find all this amazing artwork, John?

We are posting along similar lines. I did this one recently showing the story of Noah to be a contract where God upholds slavery: https://thirdparadigm.substack.com/p/the-devil-and-naomi-wolf. And prior to that I did one based on a decade of my research and also of Joe Atwill's, author of Caesar's Messiah: https://thirdparadigm.substack.com/p/jesus-is-the-og-psy-ops.

Carotta isn't wrong, from my research and Joe's, that the God of the NT is Caesar (and the God of the OT is Pharaoh, about which I'll be publishing more.) But the Caesar at the time it was written was Vespasian and his son Titus who brutally breached the siege of Jerusalem, after the Judeans had taken it back for three years. But the author of the gospels, and who I think Jesus represents, is Josephus, a craven coward who betrayed his own people and saved his skin by telling Vespasian that he was the Messiah and would become Caesar. When that came true some years later, Vespasian made him his son, in other words, the son of God. Josephus wrote the gospel of Mark, and Joe has a lot of detail on this, to whitewash his shameful role and turn himself into the hero while turning the actual heroes--Judas the Sicariot, leader of the zealots--into Satan and his demons.

I'm an admirer of Julius Caesar, especially from reading Michael Parenti's excellent book on him. Don't sully his name by comparing him to Jesus.

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Apr 1Liked by John Carter

This series has been one of the most interesting things I have read in a long time.

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Mar 22Liked by John Carter

It seems to me that many of these attempts to construct an alternative set of religious ideas about the world and our place in it falter, because we can't believe something literally, unless we actually sincerely believe it literally. Things like the people trying on pagan ideas devolve into a larp.

If I want to construct a religion, I should probably begin with things I actually believe are true. You and I have exactly as much right to construct our own religion as anyone else, however much right that ends up being. Pretty much all relgions seem manmade to me. We each have a right to our own minds, and a right to assert what we believe to be true about the world, that should supersede anyone elses "official truth" and claims of authority.

Stories and mythology are much looser, because we're free to arrange things to express something we think is true and important in metaphor. Keeping metaphor and reality straight, though, is important.

I'm entirely onboard with not grovelling. Grovelling is for the whipped slaves of bronze-age oriental god-kings, whose godhood peaked at piling up rocks and killing each other in inventively cruel ways. (Another reason to detest the servility in common religions: The impulse may be natural, but it's munged up in master-slave dominance-deference instincts that are beneath the dignity of free men.)

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Mar 21·edited Mar 21Liked by John Carter

The whole series has been interesting. Thanks John. Yes, it's okay to mock and question too.

I am still of the view that GOD (Almighty) has nothing to do with religion and has been gravely misrepresented by religious groups, who are in fact political parties of old with priests who joined hands with politicians (as in before democracy/communism/tribalism or whatever adherence to tradition as a moral authority or hierarchy) that represented groups of like-minded sheep.

I am still in complete awe by what has been created when one looks at what we call planet Earth and the rest of the cosmos that surrounds us. I know, I will die with that in me.

I do not believe that human beings could have created this and nor do I believe in the scientific hypothesis about creation either.

So stuff religions and politicians and scientists and the royalty/monarchs who claim nature their right of ownership.

There has to be an Almighty power who created this realm with all the complications and intricacies.

We need to be grateful for what we have, no matter how little. We must accept that we are all insignificant in the greater scheme of things no matter if we don't agree that there are lesser and greater beings.

We need to stop though these other creatures who appear as human beings with whom we share this planet from experimenting on us with their evil creations.

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Just read all four parts in one sitting, but I knew this last part was gonna hit different after reading the first few sentences. Great stuff, lots of food for thought!

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Mar 18Liked by John Carter

I believe Thomas Jefferson grappled with the same thoughts re: the Bible & Christianity. He recognized the inherent value of Christian morality towards western civilization, and he a Deist (kind of a milquetoast agnostic) even issued a translation of the Bible aimed at the native American tribes, that dispensed with the pap of the Old Testament, streamlined the new testament, and attempted to present the character of Jesus in a relatable fashion for his intended audience.

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