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orion-list Philo and pacifism of Essenes

Considering that the Therapeautae seem to be the first
group of Jewish "mystics" that make full living arrangements for
female "pious ones", it is easy for me to believe that the
Therapeutae have the **greater** reputation for pacifism
than the Essenes.  If anything the Essenes must have at
least had a greater reputation for **strictness** considering
their rules about purity, no contact with junior members,
and the like.  While it is conceivable the Egyptian group
was **just** as strict, it seems unlikely considering the kind
of trouble women posed in the minds of men during
those days in terms of purity.

If we follow the logic of the War Scroll, women had to
be kept separate form "pure" men so that the angels would
be able to fight along side the males in holy jihad.  The
question remains as to whether the Jewish "masses" had any
idea about the War Scroll, or whether it was one of those top,
top secrets of the Doers of Torah/Doers of War.

In contrast, the Egyptian leaders of the Therapeautae seem
to have been **less** concerned about having their men ready
to fight in holy jihad.  In fact, I have come to think that if Jesus
had any Essene-style influence, it was probably from the 
"female-friendly" Therapeautae.  Did the family of Joseph the
Carpenter/Builder have friends and contacts in the Egyptian
community.  One of the books of the Gospel thinks so.  
Would this be where Jesus would learn to tolerate and
even encourage the involvement of womem in
his King of God movement?

Just some thoughts to ponder....

George Brooks
Tampa, FL

On Mon, 20 Dec 1999 19:14:30 +0100 Greg Doudna <gd@teol.ku.dk> writes:
> I think Russ Gmirkin's posts of 19 Dec and 20 Dec 1999 on
> Philo are just brilliant.  But just to be devil's advocate to 
> both Gmirkin and Batsch for a moment, consider this: 
> maybe Philo wants to have the Therapeutae be innocent, 
> peaceful, etc.  So he compares them to a group that everyone
> knows is peaceful, namely the Essenes of Judea.  In other 
> words, like a good defense attorney, Philo associates his client
> in the dock (the Therapeutae, leading Jews of Alexandria) with 
> a group from afar of known peaceful nature and virtues, the 
> Essenes.  The effectiveness of the tactic presupposes that 
> the Essenes actually were thought by their contemporaries
> to be peaceful.  I would be interested in Gmirkin's comment 
> on this.  
> Greg Doudna
> For private reply, e-mail to Greg Doudna <gd@teol.ku.dk>
For private reply, e-mail to George Brooks <george.x.brooks@juno.com>
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