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The Myth of the Resurrection and Other Essays (Freethought Library) Paperback – February 1, 1993


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Product Details

  • Series: Freethought Library
  • Paperback: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books (February 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0879758333
  • ISBN-13: 978-0879758332
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.4 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,091,287 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 11, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My title for this review pretty much says it all: the author has a clear and well thought out structure, but since these are truly essays, they contain almost no quotes or references of the source material. Had the author made use of such referencing, this could have been a powerful work. The authors' opinions are presented without the backing of the base material, and as such sound as if they are propaganda. As it is, it is of little use to a serious reader of this subject.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By J. Alan Bock on June 14, 2011
Format: Paperback
Joseph McCabe's publisher touted him as "the world's greatest scholar." You would think that "the world's greatest scholar" would have been more appreciative of references and citations (these can be obtained if one looks elsewhere). Also, an index would have helped. Other reviewers have noted these deficiencies.

These deficiences aside, this is an excellent little book and McCabe is well-qualified to write it. At the age of sixteen he entered a Franciscan seminary, was ordained at twenty-three and appointed to teach philosophy. Subsequently, he found his faith "bankrupt" and abandoned both the priesthood and Catholicism. He was a scholar of the first magnitude, steeped in the classics, and proficient in Latin and Greek. He was able to translate the ancient manuscripts from their original sources even the ones (as he points out) which were never translated because they reflected adversely on Christianity. Here was someone who "knew the secrets" and "spilled the beans."

In "The Myth of the Resurrection", McCabe points out that resurrection myths, whether Egyptian, Babylonian, Phoenician, Persian, Phrygian, or Greek go back to long before the time of Christ. Centuries before nations annually celebrated the death and resurrection of Osiris, Tammuz, Attis, Mithra and other gods. Christianity was not unique and was far from the first.

St. Paul, according to McCabe, truly believed in the resurrection of Christ. However, the resurrection accounts of the four evangelists (which were written after Paul's epistles) contain numerous conflicts, contradictions and clumsy fabrications. Read all four Gospel accounts and you will become thoroughly confused.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Danny Boy on August 2, 2003
Format: Paperback
Another reviewer has criticized this book for its lack of reference, and I agree. McCabe should've given citations, so that we can check the reliability of his sources and their methods. Also, there are a lot of good ideas scattered throughout this book, that Prometheus should have an index placed at the back.
The content of the book itself is very well written and thoroughly engaging. In the first part, McCabe documents specific beliefs and practices of the pagan cults, and draws parallels with christian beliefs and practices. He rightfully concludes that the gospel resurrection myth is a pagan derivative, and that it did not happen.
The Second part concerns the historicity of Jesus. While very skeptical of the gospel narratives, McCabe shows that it is more plausible that there was a hstorical Jesus behind the stories, than to believe that it is all myth. He reviews contemporary Jesus Mythicists like arthur Drews, who wrote The Christ Myth, and finds them wanting.
The last part of the book chronicles the rise of christianity, and how it was instrumental in the downfall of the Roman Empire shortly after gaining power via Emperor Constantine. It is definitely an eye-opening look at how christianity is vastly different from, an intolerant of, other beliefs. Rome was better off with Paganism as their official national religion.
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