[lit-ideas] Re: One fewer god

  • From: jimkandjulieb@xxxxxxx
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 28 Aug 2006 13:53:09 -0400

That was helpful, J.S.  I'm not a "follower" of Campbell (when asked I call 
myself an unafiliated monotheist), but I wanted to point something out to 
Irene.  I need to find a quote from one of his books for her.  But you've gotta 
be kidding me that we live in a three-dimensional world.....
Julie Krueger
 (even a clumsy utopia would be fine w/ me)
-----Original Message-----
From: dosflounder@xxxxxxxxx
To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: Mon, 28 Aug 2006 10:48 AM
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: One fewer god

First, I am a man of many interests. I am not a follower of Joseph Campbell or 
for that matter Jung.  As much DOS as flounder, I find the evolution of thought 
a never ending source of enlightenment. The amount of knowledge I have about 
Zoroastrian dualism is therefore limited. 
Dualism in ancient Persia developed slowly, starting out as a fear of natural 
phenomena or primitive fire/devil worship, a malevolent god. Gradually men 
developed a realization that they had a moral capacity beyond the forces of 
nature; this was attributed to a more virtuous god. Zoroaster preached of the 
constant conflict between these two poles: Truth v Lies, Good v Evil, etc., or 
another way of saying white hat/black hat. Unfortunately, dualism is a two 
dimensional perspective in a three dimensional world.  The cross fertilization 
of religious myths is difficult to untangle but the golden thread of good and 
evil influences is woven into our beliefs - even secular beliefs.
The one thing we lack is a handy utopia.
I'm interested in how Zoroasterian myth  contributed to combine w/ the Jewish 
Lucifer to produce the Christian Satan.  I've read a fair amount about it but 
none of it makes alot of sense to me.
Julie Kreuger
elated to have a comparative mythologist on board
Utopias are nice be we would die of boredom
-----Original Message-----
From: dosflounder@xxxxxxxxx
To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: Sun, 27 Aug 2006 3:41 PM
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: One fewer god

I am not sure that the dates associated with Zoroaster are really that certain. 
Some modern scholars believe that Zoroaster is the author of the GÃthÃ's (a 
part of the holy book of the Zoroastrians, the Avesta), which they date on 
linguistic grounds - in the fourteenth or thirteenth century BCE. Since the 
time-lines are uncertain they should be put aside.  
I would note however that I did not say that they originated monotheism but 
were original thinkers, meaning that they (Abraham and Zoroaster), unlike small 
and for the most part, forgotten monotheistic cults, were succesful in 
establishing a following that expanded into major religious groups.  
Are you saying that Judaism originated as an Egyptian cult? Were early "Jews" 
even Jews at all if they needed to be taught what monotheism is?
The one thing we lack is a handy utopia.
dreas Ramos <andreas@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
I wondered about this.

Egyptian cults, such as Aten (1,300 BC), were monotheistic. That's where the 
early Jews 
learned about monotheism.

Early Judaeism was polytheistic and there's plenty of examples for this in the 

As for Zoraster, that is 300-500 BC, so it was fairly later.

In any case, neither Zoraster nor Abraham were original thinkers about 


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Robert Paul" 
Sent: Sunday, August 27, 2006 11:23 AM
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: One fewer god

> Jack Spratt wrote:
> "Abraham's or Zoroaster did not arrive at their teachings about god entirely 
> from their 
> tribal experience, they were original thinkers. God(s) come out of man's head 
> like Venus 
> coming out of Zeus' but what they look like and how they are accepted by 
> those nearby 
> becomes part of the culture." \

> You are, perhaps, thinking of Athena, who according to myth, literally 
> emerged from Zeus's 
> head, after he had swallowed her mother. Venus is the Roman counterpart of 
> Aphrodite, who 
> emerged from the foam after Cronos castrated his father, Uranos, and threw 
> his genitals 
> into the sea. Homer's account of her origins differs, and in it, Aphrodite is 
> the daughter 
> of Zeus and a sky goddess, Dione.
> The earlier version makes a better painting though.
> Robert Paul
> Reed College
> ---------------------------------
> All-new Yahoo! Mail - Fire up a more powerful email and get things done 
> faster.


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