After being at this for a while, nothing surprises me anymore. It’s almost to the point where I don’t even expect critics of the Christian message to do their due diligence and investigate whether what they read on Atheist’s blogs is even accurate. Here’s the next example.
- Born of a virgin? Nope, his parents were Isis and Osiris.
- Birth announced by a star in the East? No.
- Walked on water? There is no record of this in any Horus story.
- Healed the sick and restored sight? Close. He did perform miracles, which is nothing strange considering he was a god. However, there’s nothing similar to Jesus’ resurrecting the dead (Lazarus) or exorcised demons. I also wasn’t able to find healing the sick and blind specifically.
- Crucified, dead for 3 days, resurrected? Nope, nope, nope. Not only was Horus not crucified, crucifixion was not invented until long after (circa 600 BC) the Horus story was already in circulation. As for resurrected, not really. Horus, while hiding in a marsh with his mother Isis, was bitten by a poisonous scorpion. Isis cried out for help. A spell was utterd which restored Horus to life. The Metropolitan Museum of Art says the following about an inscription found pertaining to Horus: “On the stela Isis speaks and recounts that while she and Horus were still hiding in the marshes, the child became ill. In her despair, she cried for help to the “Boat of Eternity” (the sun boat in which the god travels over the sky), “and the sun disk stopped opposite her and did not move from his place.” Thoth was sent from the sun boat to help Isis and cured Horus by reciting a catalogue of spells.” In most cases Horus is described as being sickened then cured of the sickness through spells. Nothing suggests he was dead for three days either.
- Born of a virgin on December 25? Nope. He was “born” out of the side of a mountain, not a virgin. If Mithra was “born” on December 25, it is of no consequence since Jesus wasn’t. No one even makes the claim that Jesus was born on ‘Christmas’. December 25 is the day on which his birth is celebrated.
- Birth announced by a star in the East? Not that I can find. It’s not surprising since he wasn’t born at all, he was formed from a mountain.
- Had 12 disciples? No dice. In the Roman version of the Mithra story he has two companions, and in the Persian version, he has one. The reference for 12 disciples comes from an image of Mithra slaying a bull with 12 other figures around him. Quite a stretch if you as me.
- Performed miracles? Yes, this one is correct. However this is not very significant considering Mithra is supposed to be some kind of deity. Gods perform miracles.
- Dead for 3 days then resurrected? Wrong again. There are some 4th century AD sources suggesting that he died, the earliest sources don’t mention his death at all much less a resurrection. Given the late attestation of a death — but no burial or resurrection — any attribution of such is more likely influenced by the Christian culture and not the other way around.
- Born of a virgin? Ha ha… no. When Krishna was conceived and born his parents already had 7 other children.
- Birth announced by a star in the East? There are no accounts of any stellar events surrounding his birth.
- Performed miracles? Possibly. But as with the others, none are of the kind that Jesus performed i.e., healing the sick.
- Called “Son of God”? Not only is Krishna never referred to as “Son of God” in any Krishna stories, he isn’t even referred to as any of the other traditional titles assigned to Jesus.
- Son of a carpenter? There is no mention of Krishna’s father, Vasuveda, being a carpenter or anything else for that matter.
- Resurrected from the dead? No, he was not resurrected. He was killed by a hunter while meditating in the woods. His soul ascended into heaven while his body was cremated.
- Born of a virgin on December 25th? Dionysus was the result of the physical sexual affair between a mortal woman, Semele, and Zeus. This precludes a virgin birth. The celebration of Dionysus’ birth is not his birth date but rather his ‘second birth’, and that was celebrated on January 6th…not Christmas.
- Travelling teacher? He was proclaimed to be a travelling teacher.
- Turned water into wine? Oohh…so close. Dionysus was called “the God of the vine”, but that’s where it ends. In the 2nd century a Greek Romance was written and says he introduced wine to the world. In it Dionysus is quoted as referring to the wine as “the water of summer” but is never said to have turned water into wine in any story.
- Called “Holy Child”? Of all the titles Dionysus shares with Jesus is “Savior”. However, it’s in reference to him saving people from the wrath of Pentheus, not from their sin or a salvific context like Jesus.
I was able to fact check these claims in about an hour. Universities and museums have websites with verified biographies of all the “copycat” myths, so the information is readily available. In fact, it is only on skeptics’ blogs that make the claim that prior deities have the same details of Jesus’ life. Why is this? Why are these claims that the details of Jesus’ life are stolen from prior myths still being made when they are so easily fact checked and found to be not at all similar?