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A provocative argument for a mystical, rather than historical, understanding of Jesus, leading to a radical rebirth of Christianity in our time.
For forty years, scholar and religious commentator Tom Harpur has challenged church orthodoxy and guided thousands of readers on subjects as controversial as the true nature of Christ and life after death. Now, in his most radical and groundbreaking work, Harpur digs deep into the origins of Christianity.
Long before the advent of Jesus Christ, the Egyptians and other peoples believed in the coming of a messiah, a virgin birth, a madonna and her child, and the incarnation of the spirit in flesh. While the early Christian church accepted these ancient truths as the very basis of Christianity, it disavowed their origins. What had begun as a universal belief system built on myth and allegory was transformed, by the third and fourth centuries A.D., into a ritualistic institution based on a literal interpretation of myths and symbols. But, as Tom Harpur argues in The Pagan Christ, "to take the Gospels literally as history or biography is to utterly miss their inner spiritual meaning."
At a time of religious extremism, Tom Harpur reveals the virtue of a cosmic faith based on ancient truths that the modern church has renounced. His message is clear: Our blind faith in literalism is killing Christianity. Only with a return to an inclusive religion where Christ lives within each of us will we gain a true understanding of who we are and who we are intended to become. The Pagan Christ is a book of rare insight and power that will reilluminate the Bible and change the way we think about religion.
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Praise for The Pagan Christ
"In this passionate hymn to Christ universal, rather than demythologizing Jesus as so many scholars do, Tom Harpur remythologizes Christ. He identifies the Christian mythos with universal themes drawn, in particular, from Egyptian wisdom, not to debunk Christian truth but to rekindle it with ancient fire."-- Forrest Church, author of Bringing God Home: A Spiritual Guidebook for the Journey of Your Life
"A thoroughly captivating book .... Harpur describes and shares his intellectual journey extremely powerfully."-- Globe and Mail
"A truly revolutionary work, devout but subversive in the best sense, with a carefully constructed narrative that challenges believers and non-believers to fundamentally re-examine 'the Greatest Story Ever Told.' ... Harpur has arrived at a dramatic conclusion, firmly held and well detailed."-- Edmonton JournalAbout the Author:
Tom Harpur is a former Anglican priest and professor of Greek and New Testament at the University of Toronto. He is an internationally renowned writer on religious and ethical issues, and the author of nine books, including For Christ's Sake and Life After Death.
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Book Description Thomas Allen Publishers, 2004. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0887621457
Book Description Condition: New. New. Seller Inventory # F-0887621457
Book Description Condition: New. New. Seller Inventory # FX-0887621457