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Re: Josephus & DSS

On Fri, 20 Sep 1996 10:39:42 -0600, jpman@accesscomm.net writes:
>  Yes. The Therapeutae were the Egyptian successors to the Asayyim in
>the Holy Land.  They lived by the Mareotic Lake in Egypt and were discussed
>and admired by Philo (Contemplative Life).  I believe there was a very close
>relationship between the Netzarim and the Asayyim of Jerusalem...if not a
>"merger."  The same holds true, I believe, for the Therapeutae which may
>heve been the source for the gnostic sects.  I do not believe it is a 
>coincidence that Yaqub ben-Yosef, as the first Pakiyd of the Netzarim..was
>called "ha-Tsedik."

   Would you be kind enough to translate "ha-Tsedik" and "Pakiyd" for this

>Shelama `amkhon   (also this phrase.  "Shelama" reminds me of the Egyptian
"Sharema" and makes me look a second time at the second word using "Khenu")

>Jack Kilmon

   I followed Philo's notice and took the men in white from the Gospels to be
   be Therapeuts.  I also took the notice of the projiobition of "puffer" fish
   and the VIth dynasty illustration of them to suggest the possibility of the
   use of tetrodotoxins at the crucifixion.  Since then I have been acquainted
   with Dana Beal's work on Ibogaine and take "haoma", the Zoroastrian fire
   altar drug, to be another possible candidate.  The evidence of Jesus'
   spending time not just in Egypt but farther east begs for consideration.

                  TO PENTECOST AND BEYOND IN 
                        CENTURY 21 
     (Some of this data is over twenty years old now...) 
               Excerpted from "Behind The Bible" 
   Among the Jews of Alexandria existed a sect of Essenes called 
Therapeuts.  Members of this Sect dressed solely in white linen, 
a hard-to-come-by cloth in those days.  They had a formidable 
reputation for healing. 
   Throughout the Middle East, the Egyptians had a reputation for 
medical care beyond anything the Greeks practiced.  Accounts from 
other than the Greeks tell us that.  Surviving papyri show an 
expertise equal to Nineteenth Century medicine.  Yet they relied 
on spells.  This makes us smile at their bedside manners. 
   The ancient physicians decided carefully if they would contend 
with an illness or not.  If they decided not to contend, they 
turned to spells. 
   Our understanding of the drugs they used suggests they had a 
wide range of powerful herbal, plant and natural remedies.  They 
seemed quite certain of the effects, although the modern names of 
the substances mostly have escaped us. 
   We know they understood the effects of opium and the salicyl-
ates.  Some magical papyri make us think they had drugs equival- 
ent in effect to the poisonous Fugu or puffer fish.  People in 
Japan or in the Caribbean knew of this fish.  That species is 
pantropical and known to the Red Sea.  It even appears on the 
walls of an Old Kingdom tomb. 
   The prohibition in the Old Testament against eating fish 
without scales tells us the ancients knew precisely what the 
flesh of the puffer fish could do. 
   The poison, a tetrodotoxin, gives an uncanny similitude to 
death.  It would be a powerful weapon in the hands of a Nabi.  
His healings would gain him a wonderful reputation.  Such effects 
might explain the Centurion's daughter or the raising of Lazarus.  
The Therapeuts of Alexandria or of Heliopolis might well have had 
such information.  (Heliopolis, where they still revere "The 
Virgin's Tree", is near the site of the exiled priest Onias' 
Temple.)  The only question this train of thinking raises is why 
we do not hear more about such poison experiences from other 
                                     *  *  * 
  (Historians do not consider any activities in the past or present 
as miracles or supernatural events.  Such questions, as in science, 
are outside their inquiries.  On one hand, they take into con- 
sideration people seeing events as miracles.  On the other hand, 
they look for natural explanations of events no matter how bizarre. 
  Most scholars make no decision about the nature of the Cruci- 
fixion of Jesus and His time in the tomb.  As discussed already, 
the record does not clearly show He died on the cross.  Likewise, 
as we'll see, the record does not clearly show He rose from the 
dead.  However, the record shows He went to the cross alive.  Then, 
the record shows He appeared to His followers alive from an empty 
tomb.  What happened physically in the tomb, the Shroud of Turin 
can tell us. 
  These speculations do not question The Resurrection.  They simply 
point up that History cannot prove or disprove it.  Yet detailed 
study can help describe The Resurrection.  Believers and sceptics 
alike can gain better understanding of what happened.  In fact, 
theological scholars might argue we now know how "The Holy Spirit" 
accomplished Its work. 
  Neither can researchers on the Shroud make a scientific defini- 
tion of "Christness".  Yet again, better understanding can result 
from studying the details of making the Shroud or of its history.  
Keep these points in mind as you read on.) 
  The Shroud's image happened because a hot, sweat, blood  and 
serum drenched body was in contact with the cloth for about thirty- 
six hours. 
  We can duplicate the effect.  Sister Damian of the Carmelite 
Monastery of Salt Lake City, Utah, (Dr. Eugenia Nitowski) and her 
co-workers have done so.  Just recently they did it in a duplicate 
ambience in Jerusalem. 
  Pollen traces on the cloth match the reported travels of the 
Shroud: Jerusalem, Asia Minor, Byzantium, France and Italy.  Even 
the limestone on it is uniquely from Jerusalem.  Identifiable 
traces suggest that Jerusalem dirt fell off the victim's feet. 
  The bloodstains are blood, real blood, human blood type AB.  The 
serum is human. 
  We have many samples of funerary linen preserved from antiquity.  
None showed any image of the body they contained. 
  Yet an image, a mercerization of the linen, appears on the Turin 
cloth.  This might be either from a living body or from an 
equivalent model.  The living body image shows up any time workers 
stow hospital or household bed linens unwashed in warm closets or 
hampers.  For a photo like effect the body has to be still. 
  Recent Carbon 14 dating of the Shroud of Turin shows someone made 
the cloth between A.D. 1260 and 1390.  The representatives of the 
Archbishop of Turin announced the results of independent testing 
late in 1988. 
  However, the announcement followed several leaks of supposedly 
private information.  Scholars in advance expressed some scepticism 
of whatever results the experts announced.  Since then, several 
knowledgeable scholars have expressed doubt, included Sister Damian 
  The doubts come from the chance many substances containing carbon 
contaminated the cloth in the thousand years of its certain 
existence.  No published protocols came forth to show how the 
testers took the contaminations into account.  Until the investi- 
gators set forth the full details of their study, the verdict is 
not certain. 
  An alternative exists. 
  Someone had very special and unique knowledge in the Middle East 
during the Crusades.  No one else knew then the special informa- 
tion.  None would learn it until the Nineteenth Century.  These 
special people knew that images from living bodies could transfer 
to linen.  These people organized that transfer.  That prescient 
person or persons gave or sold the cloth of Turin to a crusader, 
a Templar, who took it back to France.  There it surfaced. 
  The alternative is simple and elegant.  Usually the simplest 
explanation is best.  In this case, simplest presumes a great deal.  
Someone knew the images transferred?  Until Sister Damian's work, 
no one knew images would appear.  Someone knew the Crusaders wanted 
holy relics?  That's for sure, but did the natives expect the 
Crusaders to win?  Did they expect the Crusaders to know about 
grave cloths and such?  Could the sellers make the artifact on 
short notice?  Perhaps?  Perhaps not.  The alternative is no longer 
simple nor elegant.  Strip off the foreknowledge.  Leave the simple 
  The pre-testing dating supports this simple explanation.  The 
dating test methodology as used has enough holes in it that another 
and better test will have to be done.  Until then, the cloth can 
only continue to remind us of what may really have happened in the 
spring of 36 A.D. 
  Let us return to the suppositions: Perhaps Jesus hobbled out or 
managed stiffly to walk.  The presence of the men in white at the 
tomb suggests it.  They helped Him out.  Except to those defending 
a theological position, the inference is compelling. 
  Then He appeared to James His brother and then to the rest over 
forty days.  The appearances are few and arranged.  They make the 
least of His disabilities.  Then He leaves.  If healers in white 
helped Him up a slope. did not appear farther on, and He dropped 
out of sight, His followers saw the ascent.  Perhaps He went to 
Qumran and recovered.  Perhaps the same drug used on Lazarus, for 
the other distant healings, and on Jesus, astonished Paul on the 
way to `Damascus'.  Many think  `Damascus' was another name for 
Qumran.  He had made His promises to return. 
  The strange book, The Jesus Scroll, alleges excavators at Masada 
found a scroll containing the name of Jesus.  They smuggled it out 
of the country.  The book suggests He may have stayed there. 
  More Arabic or Islamic records are becoming known in the West.  
A conference in London in the late seventies laid out the latest 
work.  We find evidence from these new sources of a wise teacher 
who travelled to Afghanistan and to Pakistan.  There He died and 
there His tomb still exists. 
  The idea is fanciful yet some Afghan tribes have a Hebrew tradi- 
tion.  The Royal Road of the Persian Empire could have carried many 
Jews beyond Babylon at the Exile.  We may amuse ourselves at the 
idea of the Lost Tribes of Israel ending up there, but we should 
not laugh too much.  Nor should we make light of Jesus in Pakistan. 
Tom Simms <tsimms@nbnet.nb.ca>