Automotive Holiday Deals Books Gift Guide Books Gift Guide Shop Women's Cyber Monday Deals Week Learn more nav_sap_SWP_6M_fly_beacon Black Friday egg_2015 Fire TV Stick Beauty Deals Gifts for Her Amazon Gift Card Offer mithc mithc mithc  Amazon Echo Starting at $49.99 Kindle Voyage Shop Now bgg

Format: PaperbackChange
Price:$23.81+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item

There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

67 of 72 people found the following review helpful
on April 9, 2005
One of the most fascinating books I've ever read.

I definitely give this book a 5 star rating.

I spent 9 months of the last year researching Allegro's personal history, communicating with his family, etc., verifying accusations against Allegro, and investigating the personal history of those, like John Strugnell, who spent their lives in attempt to destroy Allegro's career. I've spent 12 years researching this field in total.

John goes deep into pre-Christian Essene/gnostic history, and shows us how the fanatical Essene political leader the 'Teacher of Righteousness' was applied the attributes of more ancient theology such as astrotheology and shamanism/drug use talked about in our own research (search Pharmacratic Inquisition for a free demo video). From this "Teacher of Righteousness" we begin to see a three tear system of the current pervading religious dogma, and how, like ancient kings, the Teacher of Righteousness, who died in 88 BCE, was considered holy because he was closest to god's word, the semen and drugs, and labeled the anointed "Christ."


"Essene or Essenoi or Essaoioi means `physician'.

Although the name `Essene' was known only in its transliterated Greek forms, Essenoi, or Essaioi, there seemed good reason to believe it represented an Aramaic, ie Semitic, word meaning `Physician' (`asa', plural `asayya'), and reflected the popular idea that these pious people, like Jesus and his followers, exercised power of demons, an essential part of folk-medicine." Pg 12

Though he does not go as in depth into the drug use of these groups as he did in (the contested, and fabulous work) / The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross, / he does make many references to drugs, and he does delve deep into the sun/Morning-star worship (the Morning-star was Venus and named Lucifer) of the Essenes (meaning 'Physicians'), and their fertility rites. He explains in depth just how the name 'Christian' (Christ) is derived from chrism (semen anointing), and the correlation of the Sun and the Morning-star and their correlation to morning 'dew', and rain as being the Sky Gods' semen, which impregnated the mother earth--from which the most powerful drug plants had the most of God's seed.



"In any fertility religion it is the god who is responsible for impregnating Mother Earth and the wombs of women and animals. This life-giving force was then, naturally enough, associated with rain and with sperm, and the god within the thunder-storm also motivated the sexual urge in man and beast. It was thought that menstrual blood had a similar potency to that of seminal fluid, and that it was the combination of the two in the womb that produced offspring." Pg. 118

"The semen of the fertility god could be seen spurting as rain from heaving during an orgasmic thunderstorm; in concentrated form it appeared in certain powerful plants like the Mandrake, or Holy Plant, identified in many cultures with the sacred fungus, Amanita muscaria, or in the aromatic gums and resins that formed part of the traditional unctions of priests and kings. Such functionaries thus became `holy', that is separated to the god's service, being smeared, or `anointed' with his divine substance. They were therefore called `the anointed ones', that is, `messiahs', or christs, more specifically in the Old Testament, `those anointed with Jehovah/Yahweh'. (I Sam. 26:11; Ps. 2:2)"

"Since this divine essence, the Light of the Pleroma, was also the source of the Knowledge of God, the gnosis, anyone thus anointed was granted special insight, as the New Testament says: have been anointed by the Holy One and have knowledge of all things...the anointing which you received from him abides in you, and you have no need that anyone should teach you; as his chrism teaches you about everything, and is true, and is no lie, just as it has taught you, abide in him. (I John 2:20 &27)" pg. 124

"The man and woman take the ejaculated sperm in their hands, step forward, raise their eyes aloft, and with the defilement still on their hands, offer up prayers...They present to Him who is essentially the Father of us all, what lies in their palms, saying, `We offer unto Thee this gift, the Body of the Messiah.' They then proceed to it it in their infamous ritual, saying, `This is the Body of Christ, and this is the Pascha [ie, the Passover Meal] through which our bodies suffer and are made to acknowledge the Passion of Christ.' They behave similarly with a woman's menstrual blood: they collect from her the monthly blood of impurity, take it, eat it in a common meal, and say, `This is Christ's blood.'"


By reading this book, we can begin to see clearly how symbology such as the caduceus has been applied to modern medicine through religion, and it's direct cousin, the crucifix has been applied to its related religion which stemmed from the same source, the Essenes 'Physicians', and much earlier shamanic (drug) and star knowledge. Physicians were considered both spiritual and physical healers because all health problems were thought to be caused by personal demons of that person's personal issues.


"Knowledge and healing were merely two aspects of the same life-force. Gnostic Essenes, a descriptive phrase which incorporates both functions, `knowing' and `healing', symbolized and effected their calling through their anointing. Thus the epistle-writer James in the New Testament suggests that anyone of the community who was sick should call the elders to anoint him with oil in the name of the Master (5:14). The Twelve are pictured as driving out demons and anointing the sick with oil (Mark 6:13). Healing by unction persisted in the Church until the twelfth century, and the anointing of the dying, a relic of this practice, has remained a custom among Roman Catholics to this day." Pg. 129

Through this we also begin to see how the cap of the Amanita was related to the mensus, and the stipe to the white, male semen.

Allegro goes into depth on how the Essenes believed in repetitive history, and how the Teacher of Righteousness was but one of 3 'Joshuas' that had this same ancient story applied to each.

This book is very deep, and its implications are powerful. This is absolutely required reading. Buy it while it's still in print, as it is one of Allegro's few books that still remains available.

A MUST READ! Though I must admit, I am not completely convinced against the pure achaeoastrological / shamanism origins of the Jesus anthropomorphism. (See Acharya S, Morton Smith, etc.).

One day soon, John Marco Allegro's research will be the accepted norm, and not the current literal interpretations put forth by those who sought to destroy his reputation...nearly all of whom were Catholic fathers and priets: Father De Vaux and Father Josef Milik of the École Biblique, Father Jean Starcky, Father Maurice Baillet, and Monsignor Patrick Skehan. They were joined by Frank Cross of the McCormick Theological Seminary and the Albright Institute, Claus-Hunno Hunzinger from Gottingen and later John Strugnell from Oxford.

John Allegro was the ONLY researcher involved with the scrolls who didn't attempt to apply his personal dogmatic beliefs to the scrolls, and sought to translate them as he saw it, not how he wanted it to be.

Another excellent scholar, who supports many of Allegro's ideas, is Dr. Philip Davies of the University of Sheffield. His books are highly recommended reading as well.
55 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
35 of 37 people found the following review helpful
on June 13, 2003
This study is much more convincingly presented than the author's reputation would lead one to expect. Of course Allegro's reputation was ruined by the Sacred Mushroom and the Cross which, except for the basic thesis itself, and it's quite a thesis, is much more sober and scholarly than the so-called critics would have us believe. Here Allegro tries to be more restrained, although the earlier book actually contains more interesting and useful data on the cultic credos of the 1st b.c. <> 1st a.d. period. As for his conclusion, if there is one here, Allegro's suggestion that Essenic sects played a role in the Jesus narratives, and that pagan myths were assimilated to the Christ doctrines, is not really very original or untenable. In fact, reverend scholars such as Powell Davies were making the same points in the fifties, and in the benighted nineteenth century the Reverend Taylor's Diegesis, written while in an English prison for his views, made the same connections although he of course knew nothing whatever of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
11 commentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
121 of 146 people found the following review helpful
on April 16, 1999
I have read many books about Christianity and Jesus historic discussion; besides that I watch every Tv program that discusses this time of history. I read the portuguese translation of this book. Well, I have to say that this is, probably, the best book I ever read on the subject. Allegro became a largely polemic historian when he spoke about his theory that the New Testament episodes were evoked by mushrooms' consumption and not by real events. Unlike Kersten, Messadié and other polemical authors, John Allegro doesn't fall in just an easy speculation completely without logic and strong historical evidence. No, Allegro knows deeply the religious background of the Essenians and other Near-East cults. He can so easily describe the rituals and beliefs of those strange gnostic movements that one feels like we're actually reliving those past times with them: the reader can see the Ancient World through the eyes and words of John Allegro. Although, the majority of historians believe that Jesus really existed, even if some of the events written in the New Testament may have not happened like that, there is one thing that must be stated: we found no strong proof of Jesus existence to this day. There is no record of Jesus from his age. The original Gospels were only written some 40 or 50 years after Jesus death and may have been badly translated by the posterior Gentile christians: we can read only the remains of the greek Gospels and never the originals (if there were any real originals). The 1st century roman and jewish historians don't know anything of importance about Jesus, even though they knew of the Christian movement. Even the early III century's Catholic Christian patriarchs seem to be greatly ignorant of their early antecessors history and do not provide any actually historical background of the age or for the original Hebrew records: any knowledge of the real events of the past is lost to them and only tradition remains. Most of the Testimonium Flavianum of Flavius Josephus is know believed to have been forged by some Christian copist and doesn't still represent a strong argument to Jesus existence, because Josephus could have been deceived by some popular stories told by the Christian tradition which may not be historically true. Besides, the stories spoken in the Gospels seem to be intended mostly for preaching and not for historical background: many of the events and rituals described in essential episodes don't match our knowledge of the age. Pilatos wasn't a coward governor afraid of cruxifying a Jewish rebel and Pilatos didn't convert to Christianism like the sayings of the Christian tradition: Pilatos was dimissed by the Emperor by his excessive ruthlessness towards the people in 36 and committed suicide in Vienna shortly after; there wasn't any roman census at the time of Herodes (because Judea wasn't a roman province at the time); there isn't any evidence about a roman tradition of releasing a prisoner by the time of Easter (and it is most unlikely that something like that could happen in a Roman Province) and the Jewish law forbids the Sinedrius of arresting and executing people during Easter time (it is very doubtful that such a transgression of the Law should be made by the Sinedrius). Well, Allegro doesn't talk about many similarities between Christian beliefs and the cults of Dyonisius and Mythra, much popular at the time. But he gives us an interesting perspective. An ancient parchment of the Gospel of Marcos was found in Qumran. Many of the beliefs of the Essenians ressemble early christianity and the Teacher of Righteousness life also reminds us of the Jesus tale. Allegro explores with great insight the rituals and life in Qumran, concluding that the christian tales appeared after the fall of Qumran, when the group dispersed itself. The tales of Christ must have been symbolic lessons told by a group of former Essenians, and some people which adopted the christian beliefs - without understanding the mystic order of these tales - thought them to be entirely true. And so the greatest fraud of History was born... Allegro knows what he's talking about and is a recognized scholar, whose knowdlege of ancient languages remains one of the best among archaelogists. His logic and cohesion of speech is unmatched. He bases his thesis on hard evidence, doesn't create absurd historical events (like Kersten) and a profound analysis of gnostic beliefs. This is a quite reasonable perspective of the ideas and forces behind early Christianity. We should be thankful for Allegro! Even if his thesis may not be 100% enlightening - some questions still remain to be answered - he has shown us another way of looking at the Christian problem. Making people think about the past is never a bad deed!
16th of April, 1999
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
39 of 46 people found the following review helpful
on March 20, 1997
When John Allegro first characterized Christianity as the normalized, dogmatized spinoff of an ancient Levantine psylocybin cult, some demonized him, some laughed and some followed him into the darkness where drug mysticism and mainline religion can coexist.

A thousand critics poking at his every word discredited Allegro.

But is it not a logical phallacy to assume that because a person is wrong once, ever wrong shall he be?

As a student of Christian origins, I find it extremely valuable to read the writing of a scholar who begins study from the premise "Jesus did not exist" precisely because for most of us, the opposite premise is taken.

The parallels between the Qumran cult's "Teacher of Righteousness" and the Jesus figure need to be examined from more than one perspective. As is often the case, the truth here may lie somewhere between the opposing conclusions.

This is one of those works from which many will gain value by synthesizing its ideas with others. Is it unreasonable to conclude a kind of Davidian enhancement to the Jesus legend? That Jewish patriarchal typecasting has something to do with the story? That strains of the messianic spirituality nurtured at Qumran made their way into the early Church?

The historical evidence for Jesus, not to mention his cultural momentum, weighs heavily on Allegro's insistence on his non-existence. But we shouldn't let him be crushed. He's a useful Devil's advocate, if nothing more
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on January 27, 1998
Allegro may have been in the firing line for many of his extreme beliefs, but with this work he has done us all a great service. "The Teacher of Light" may or may not be Jesus. What Allegro does provide, is the air of expectancy that was around at the same time as the man we know as Jesus. Although, not a Chistian myself, I have just read the exceptional and inspiring "THE Autobiography of Jesus of Nazareth and the Missing years" by Richard G. Patton. Patton depicts a very human being against the background that Allegro sets. Anyone that makes us question should be applauded. Allegro does just that. Patton does it in spades. Highly recommended.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2006
With his thought provoking observations and comprehensive knowledge of the New Testament period, Allegro draws the reader into the evolving theology of the Essenes. His thesis is that Christianity evolved from more ancient roots than is typically credited in Western culture.

He paints a picture for us in which Judaic fundamentalists of the second or first century BCE, fed up with the corruption and "seeking after smooth things" of the religious establishment in Jerusalem, withdrew to the northwestern shore of the Dead Sea to found their own isolated community at Qumran. According to Allegro, with the death of their messianic Teacher of Righteousness at the hands of a Jewish king in 88 BCE, their understanding of their leader's role in Israel's history and their own salvation shifts from the Triumphant King model toward the Suffering Servant model. Allegro traces how their thinking might have evolved from triumphalist political aspirations for Israel's greatness as a nation to a mystical path to God for the individual based on gnosis -- one of the roots of the various gnostic sects which collectively may have represented the early stages of Christianity.

He follows the story on into the struggle for dominance that was eventually won by the "Great Church" (which we now know as the Catholic Church), tracing the consequences of the suppression of the various competing interpretations of Scriptures and traditions, including how those suppressed ideas and threads continued reviving and manifesting through the Middle Ages and even into modern times with the Protestant Reformation.

I found his perspective on the evolution of Western religious belief and practice fascinating.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on May 13, 2008
Having discovered the works of John M. Allegro through the online documentary "The Pharmacratic Inquisition," as I'm sure many others have, I was eager to read first hand the writings of the man whose work seemed so fundamental to the Pharmacratic thesis. My first Allegro experience was "The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross," which I was more or less disappointed by, primarily due to Allegro's writing style and organization.

I therefore approached this book with a bit of subdued enthusiasm, but was very pleased to discover a well organized, enthralling exploration of the possible origins of the christian mythology rooted in the events and persons of the first century BC. Deriving much of the support for his thesis from the hitherto unheard contents of the dead sea scrolls, Allegro painted a compelling picture of the sociopolitical forces that eventually crystalized the Jesus myth out of the fragmented Essene cult and their "Teacher of Righteousness," who was crucified and mythologized hundreds of years before the composition of the Jesus of Nazerith myth with which we are now so familiar.

Despite the book synopsis on the back cover and on, the book has no mention of cover-ups and suppression of information by the vatican and others, although that is almost beyond doubt. This book propagates no ill-will toward those of the Christian faith, it is completely dedicated to scholarly exploration of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the profound parallels to the Christian story found therein.

This book was wonderfully illuminating and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 26, 2012
After reading four of Allegro's books, The Dead Sea Scrolls, The Mushroom and The Cross, The End of The Road and now The Dead Sea Scrolls and The Christian Myth, I have found all of these books to be written with completely different arguments, showing the wits and talent of this man. In this particular book, Allegro clearly shows knowledge of the New Testament, Philo, Pliny, the Gnostic Gospels, the writings of the early church fathers and information that he personally obtained through his research on the Dead Sea Scrolls that includes details of the Essenes and Zealots. Allegro's interpretation, conclusion and opinion based on his research are included here, which I find far more objective and credible than the majority of his critics.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on January 27, 1998
Allegro may have been in the firing line for many of his extreme beliefs, but with this work he has done us all a great service. "The Teacher of Light" may or may not be Jesus. What Allegro does provide, is the air of expectancy that was around at the same time as the man we know as Jesus. Although, not a Chistian myself, I have just read the exceptional and inspiring "THE Autobiography of Jesus of Nazareth and the Missing years" by Richard G. Patton. Patton depicts a very human being against the background that Allegro sets. Anyone that makes us question should be applauded. Allegro does just that. Patton does it in spades. Highly recommended.
11 commentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on November 15, 2010
Eisenman in his "James, brother of Jesus" hypothesizes that James the Just is the righteous teacher in the dead sea scrolls and that Paul is the wicked priest. John Allegro before him hypothesized a bit differently; He says the wicked priest is some former Greek ruler and Jesus was the righteous teacher; only, this Jesus was crucified long before the Jesus Christ of the New Testament - like around 88 B.C.

I havn't read Eisenman's work yet. I've read Finkelstein's "The Bible UnEarthed", Earl Doherty's "The Jesus Puzzle", and Acharya S's "Christ in Egypt." I think I'm making good time! Well, now, I've read John Allegro's little book here. I feel like I've read maybe the inspiration for Eisenman's work; the question is who's right about who the righteous teacher and the wicked priest is?

The above issue is probably what whould stop most people from reading this great, well written book today. I don't know about all his details; he sometimes doesn't give a reference to some of his points; but, more often than not, he gives references to primary sources; you do that in this business and you've got to take it somewhat seriously. The only thing that mythology can point to is printed words and ruins; so, how seriously can you ever take anything about this Bible stuff? If you can get a reference to a primary source . . . ;

He of course cannot talk about all aspects of the dead sea scrolls since they were not released in his lifetime; but, what he does is show the culture of the dead sea scrolls writers, and he makes key connections. I mean if your new to this stuff as I was you'll look at the chapter headings and feel like your diving into some meaningless culture; but, each chapter points to the next; what's said in one chapter often makes sense of the chapter heading coming right up. It was something I found in the way he structured the book. I mean what he did in this book was to just give a bare outline hint that the essenes could indeed have evolved into proto-christianity. He could do no more during the time he lived!

He just seems to find little threads based on primary references and shows connections all the way to the New Testament. In the end, he mentions that the New Testament notes all kinds of slang and code words for spells and so on; but, he does not begin to show those. Maybe those are in his Jesus is a Mushroom book(oh boy, I have read yet another thousand page tomb!)

All in all, I'm thinking this book may have been the inspiration for Eisenman's works.

Also, his last chapter is more about philosophy and suggesting that maybe we shouldn't be so harsh on the writers of the New Testament; he notes that they seemed to be torn between keeping their religion pure and for the individual and making one religion to rule the world. He notes that some of the pro-roman tax paying appears to be more of a compromise; that they seemed to be reluctant to put that in there.

I myself have found that there are things to appreciate about this whole Judao-Christian religion; that it is solar-theology personified(the Bible starts out with saying god is for controlling the stars and signs . . . astrotheology right there!). I've spent a lot of my life trying to understand the nature and origin of mathematical concepts. And abstraction is certainly a major feature. Abstraction is the common form that many similar structures can take on. The quick and easy example is that two apples and two oranges are just to concrete structures of the abstraction number two. Jesus Christ is just the common form of the solar theology of the mediterraenean back then.

It's nice that Jesus Christ can be viewed this way; but, I don't like how Jesus Christ and God are ultimately used; they are ultimately just vague words used to explain away everything without explaining anything. Jesus Christ is the Alpha and Omega; he's everything he needs to be. Whether good or bad happens, god(and even Jesus Christ) did it; if it's something that is perceived at one time to be bad, the common mental trick is to say "god works in mysterious ways."

See, In 1931, Kurt Godel proved these 'incompleteness' theorems about logic in general. He said that a finite set of axioms cannot prove an infinity of truths. This is assukming those axioms are consistent. If they are inconsistent, then they can prove an infinity of truths! They can prove everything including all inconsistent statements. This is what God is ultimately, an algebraic X standing for I don't know and I don't want to know. The trinity of gods but one god anyway is more proof of the inconstent statements that christianity for one uses to sweep all problems under the rug.

I point out because people want to find silver linings in all this disproof of the Bible and religion in general. I mean you can show all this to bible-philies all you want; it's not what they're in it for. And also, that trying to get closure on this is almost impossible; this is the only closure; that it is a vagueness trick. You, they did, could spend the rest of eternity going through textual interpretation; it's a kind of inconsistent psuedo-mathematics that can absorb the energies of humanity. Humanity is obviously the technologically dependent species; we need to learn the universe to survive. Spending forever in this inconsitent statements trying to get every nuance out of it is futile; it is an infinit bottomless pit; it's a trap that you can get addicted to. Mathematics, the exporation of the universe is the real purpose of humanity. This is what's wrong with the bible then and now.

After reading John Allegro's book, do you really want to read Eisenman's stuff? Maybe you could be disciplined and find time when you get stuck on some mathematical problem; or, maybe you're waiting for some experimental results to come in, you could dabble some more in this bible. But, this book is a trap; it's like quicksand. It's like being addicted to gambling. You'll think you'll find Jesus Christ or lay the thing to rest - finally. But, no, you won't; it's an inconsistent statement that can prove every contradictory statement forever; it's just literary commentary on top of literary commentary; that's what the bible is; Joseph of Genesis, then Joseph who goes around conquering canaan, and then Joseph of the New Testament, or in greek, Jesus. It's just literary commentary on top of . . . forever;
22 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.