On War and Apocalypse

From the Aug/Sept 2009 Print Edition

My work has often been presented as a discussion of archaic religion through comparative anthropology. Its goal is to shed light on the process of hominization : the fascinating passage from animality to humanity that occurred thousands of years ago. In all of this, my hypothesis has concerned . . . . Continue Reading »

Are the Gospels Mythical?

From the April 1996 Print Edition

From the earliest days of Christianity, the Gospels’ resemblance to certain myths has been used as an argument against Christian faith. When pagan apologists for the official pantheism of the Roman empire denied that the death-and-resurrection myth of Jesus differed in any significant way from the myths of Dionysus, Osiris, Adonis, Attis, etc., they failed to stem the rising Christian tide. In the last two hundred years, however, as anthropologists have discovered all over the world foundational myths that similarly resemble Jesus’ Passion and Resurrection, the notion of Christianity as a myth seems at last to have taken hold—even among Christian believers. Continue Reading »