Plutarch's Osiris, Philo's Logos, and Paul's Jesus.

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
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MrMacSon
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Re: Plutarch's Osiris, Philo's Logos, and Paul's Jesus.

Post by MrMacSon » Sat Sep 08, 2018 9:43 pm

nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 8:26 pm
MrMacSon wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 5:49 pm
This isn't a dig at nightshadetwine, but the frequent semantics/ language of the commentary around a lot of ancient religious concepts is at best 'interesting', and at worst illogical and misleading.

The situation isn't gods "revealing themselves" - it's accounts of perceptions of visions and dreams, and 'a dreamworld' was a pervasive concept big from ~2-300 bc/bce to ~ 2-300 ad/ce (eg. the works of Aelius Aristides such as Sacred Tales (Hieroi Logoi)).
Yeah, I don't believe they literally were visited by gods or even necessarily had hallucinations(maybe some did). I think they would maybe just get "ideas" or have dreams that they interpreted as being some kind of revelation from their god. Is that what you're saying?
Yep, but I think that saying "the god redeemed adherents ... by 'revealing himself' .." influences how people think about what is being discussed. It's like when people say "Jesus said ..." - we don't really know what Jesus said. The terminology is reifying abstract concepts - its a fallacy sometimes called the hypostatisation fallacy, and I think it often influences the way people engage with various concepts and discussions around them (and not in a good way - and, again, this is a general comment, not a criticism of you).
Last edited by MrMacSon on Sat Sep 08, 2018 9:49 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Plutarch's Osiris, Philo's Logos, and Paul's Jesus.

Post by MrMacSon » Sat Sep 08, 2018 9:47 pm

MrMacSon wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 6:21 pm
Another question is whether there was a messianic or Christ cult (or several Christ or messianic cults), separate to a Jesus cult.

eg. tablet found at Qumran, dated before the time of the NT Jesus, gives an account of vision of [an] apocalypse transmitted by the angel Gabriel, draws on the Old Testament, especially the prophets Daniel, Zechariah and Haggai, and has speaks of a messiah who will rise from the dead after three days - https://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/06/worl ... wanted=all
nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 8:41 pm
...See, these ideas were around before Christianity ...
That's my point.

And what you wrote next sort of was, too -
nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 8:41 pm
... The Dead Sea scrolls show Hellenic influence so the idea of some kind of future dying and resurrecting savior or messiah was already being "created". This idea probably come out of Hellenized Jewish sects that were influenced by Greco-Roman religion.
----------------------------------
Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 8:59 pm

I for one would love it if the Hazon Gabriel is what some purport it to be. But IIUC there are questions about the correct reading at the crucial point (as to whether it ought to be "in three days live" or "in three days the sign"); also, the possibility of forgery present.
Sure. It was but one example I quickly coopted.

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Re: Plutarch's Osiris, Philo's Logos, and Paul's Jesus.

Post by MrMacSon » Sat Sep 08, 2018 9:51 pm

I think the OP is a very thought-provoking one (other than the question nightshadetwine asks) -
nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:57 pm

... I've been entertaining an idea that Paul sees Jesus the same way that Plutarch sees Osiris in "Isis and Osiris" and Philo sees the Logos. Plutarch sees Osiris as the "Logos" that is a mediator or intermediary between god and humanity. Philo says the logos is "god's first born son" which is also a mediator between humanity and god. This concept of god or the divine needing a mediator to reach humanity or the physical realm is something you find in middle Platonism.

From The Gospel of Thomas and Plato : A Study of the Impact of Platonism on the Fifth Gospel By Ivan Miroshnikov:
The double role of Plutarch's Osiris is determined by his intermediary status: in order to act as an intermediary between the transcendent God and the world, he needs to participate in both transcendence and immanence. The very same double role is ascribed to Logos in Philo: according to Mos. 2.127, the cosmic Logos deals with both "the incorporeal and paradigmatic forms" and the visible objects that imitate these forms. The fact that Philo's Logos and Plutarch's Osiris are functionally identical and that Osiris can also be called Logos demonstrates that Philo's philosophy of Logos was part of a larger Middle Platonist tradition and that this tradition as a whole should be recognized as a possible background for the Johannine Logos

The Logos doctrine is something you find in the Hebrew scriptures too but it seems to originally come from ancient Egyptian religion.

From "The Complete Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Egypt" by Richard H. Wilkinson:
The text alludes to the Heliopolitan creation account centered on the god Atum, but goes on to claim that the Memphite god Ptah preceded the sun god and that it was Ptah who created Atum and ultimately the other gods and all else 'through his heart and through his tongue'. The expression alludes to the conscious planning of creation and it's execution through rational thought and speech, and this story of creation ex nihilo as attributed to Ptah by the priests of Memphis is the earliest known example of the so-called 'logos' doctrine in whuch the world is formed through a god's creative speech...It lies before, and in line with, the philosophical concepts found in the Hebrew Bible where 'God said, let there be light, and there was light'(Genesis 1:3), and the Christian scriptures which state that 'In the beginning was the word[logos]...and the word was God...all things were made by him...

So Osiris and Jesus can both be seen as the Logos and they both die and resurrect. The death symbolizes the partaking of the logos in the physical world or world of matter. This idea of a mediator who comes from a divine realm or comes from god is something you find in the mystery religions. The mystery god or goddess partakes in some kind of experience or suffering in a "lower" realm like the physical realm or the underworld. By entering the lower realms and "dying" they are able to "connect" humanity to the divine/God. This is why the initiate into the mystery religion would identify with the dying and rising god or goddess.

From "Following Osiris: Perspectives on the Osirian Afterlife from Four Millennia" By Mark Smith:
But the crucial significance of Osiris for them lay in what he personally had experienced. His life, death, and resurrection were perceived to be particularly momentous in relation to their own fates, and thus they figure more prominently in the textual record than do accounts of the exploits of other divinities. Moreover, because so much importance was invested in the fact that these were events actually experienced by a real individual, and not merely abstractions, personal detail was essential in recounting them.

From "Reading Dionysus: Euripides’ Bacchae and the Cultural Contestations of Greeks, Jews, Romans, and Christians" by Courtney Friesen
Not only does Paul employ language that reflects mystery cults in several places, his Christian community resembles them in various ways.They met in secret or exclusive groups, employed esoteric symbols, and practiced initiations, which involved identification with the god’s suffering and rebirth.

From "The Gods of Ancient Greece: Identities and Transformations" by Jan Bremmer and Andrew Erskine
Dionysos and Persephone, who, in spite of being immortals, suffer some events which can be interpreted as death and resurrection in tales in which human beings participate in one way or another. Both gods act as mediators who grant the initiates salvation and divinization. The initiates hope to be identified with Dionysos after death...

From "The Greco-Roman World of the New Testament Era: Exploring the Background of Early Christianity" By James S. Jeffers:
The initiates also learned the central secret of the group, typically involving how to achieve union with the cult's deity. Another common element of mystery religions was a myth telling how the deity had either defeated his or her enemies or returned to life after death. As the cult member shared in the god's triumph, he or she was redeemed from the earthly and temporal.

From "Exploring the New Testament World: An Illustrated Guide to the World of Jesus and the First Christians" By Albert Bell:
Most of the gods associated with mystery cults had some connection with a cycle of death and rebirth or with going into the underworld and coming out alive...The association of grain or vegetation of any type with death and rebirth is not difficult to make. Each year the seed is put into the ground (buried) and comes up again (rebirth, resurrection). This was a familiar symbol to an agrarian society, so familiar that Paul even used it in his discussion of the resurrection in 1 Corinthians 15:35-44.

Plutarch associates Isis with matter: from The Gospel of Thomas and Plato : A Study of the Impact of Platonism on the Fifth Gospel By Ivan Miroshnikov:
Thus, according to Plutarch, Isis is matter...
A lot of the divine mediators or mystery gods are born to mortal women impregnated by a god or the divine. So the mortal woman could just be symbolic for matter like Plutarch says of Isis. So when Paul says Christ was "born of a woman" maybe he's just saying that Christ, as the "logos" or mediator sent by god, entered or partook in a "lower" realm, the realm of matter. Not that Christ was literally born to a mortal woman. Greco-Roman religion had a belief that the incarnating soul symbolically "dies" when it enters the lower/physical realms of matter. Physical realm is the realm of death. This is why the "logos" or divine mediator/savior dies in mythology.


From Plato's Gorgias, 492e-493a:
Well, life as you describe it is a strange affair. I should not be surprised, you know, if Euripides was right when he said, 'Who knows, if life be death, and death be life?' And perhaps we are actually dead, for once heard one of our wise men say that we are now dead, and that our body is a tomb, and that that part of the soul in which dwell the desires is of a nature to be swayed and to shift to and fro.

From Plato's Cratylus, 400b:
For some say that the body is the grave of the soul which may be thought to be buried in our present life;

Paul says that Christ died and rose three days later. The divine mediator/savior always "dies" by partaking in the physical realm and "rises" by partaking in the divine realm. Although the savior/mediator rises or ascends to heaven he/she doesn't completely leave humanity because humanity now has a connection to the divine/god through the mediator/savior. Plutarch says that the body of Osiris is "The images from this with which the sensible and corporeal is impressed...like impressions of seals in wax", so when the mediator/savior "dies" or partakes in the physical realm it leaves it's "impression" on the physical realm ...

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Re: Plutarch's Osiris, Philo's Logos, and Paul's Jesus.

Post by GakuseiDon » Sat Sep 08, 2018 10:18 pm

nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:57 pm
I don't consider myself a mythicist although I am open to the possibility of there being no historical Jesus but I've been entertaining an idea that Paul sees Jesus the same way that Plutarch sees Osiris in "Isis and Osiris" and Philo sees the Logos. Plutarch sees Osiris as the "Logos" that is a mediator or intermediary between god and humanity.
I don't think that accurately reflects Plutarch's view. Plutarch presents various versions of the Osiris myth, but his view is the Platonic idea:
http://www.sacred-texts.com/cla/plu/pte/pte04.htm
  • ... all that is well-ordered, good, and beneficial, we must regard as the work indeed of Isis, but as the image, imitation, and Reason of Osiris....

    But He Himself [Osiris] dwells at the greatest distance from the earth, being unmixed, undefiled, and pure from all nature admitting of corruption and of death
That's not an intermediary between god and man. Plutarch describes a number of figures as "Logos"/"Word"/"Reason", but not necessarily as intermediaries to humanity IIUC. They bring reason and order to the world.
nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:57 pm
Philo says the logos is "god's first born son" which is also a mediator between humanity and god. This concept of god or the divine needing a mediator to reach humanity or the physical realm is something you find in middle Platonism.
Yes, because the transcendent God is uncorrupted, pure and undefiled, so to interact with the corrupt world requires an intermediary. So that much is true. But I don't see that in Paul. I see something like that in the Gospel of John though.

My concern is that the views of Plutarch and Philo are being recast to match Paul, in ways that distort Plutarch and Philo.
nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:57 pm
From The Gospel of Thomas and Plato : A Study of the Impact of Platonism on the Fifth Gospel By Ivan Miroshnikov:
The double role of Plutarch's Osiris is determined by his intermediary status: in order to act as an intermediary between the transcendent God and the world, he needs to participate in both transcendence and immanence. The very same double role is ascribed to Logos in Philo: according to Mos. 2.127, the cosmic Logos deals with both "the incorporeal and paradigmatic forms" and the visible objects that imitate these forms.
Does it? Here is the passage in question:
http://www.earlyjewishwritings.com/text ... ook25.html
  • XXV. (127) And this logeum is described as double with great correctness; for reason is double, both in the universe and also in the nature of mankind, in the universe there is that reason which is conversant about incorporeal species which are like patterns as it were, from which that world which is perceptible only by the intellect was made, and also that which is concerned with the visible objects of sight, which are copies and imitations of those species above mentioned, of which the world which is perceptible by the outward senses was made. Again, in man there is one reason which is kept back, and another which finds vent in utterance: and the one is, as it were a spring, and the other (that which is uttered) flows from it; and the place of the one is the dominant part, that is, the mind; but the place of the one which finds vent in utterance is the tongue, and the mouth, and all the rest of the organs of the voice.
The Logos isn't acting as an intermediary here. It is the Platonic idea of idealic patterns being mapped to things we can perceive with the senses. Again, nothing like what is in Paul (although I'd be very happy to be proven wrong here.)
The fact that Philo's Logos and Plutarch's Osiris are functionally identical and that Osiris can also be called Logos demonstrates that Philo's philosophy of Logos was part of a larger Middle Platonist tradition and that this tradition as a whole should be recognized as a possible background for the Johannine Logos
This is a fair point, in the sense of the use of "Logos" being used by Philo, Plutarch and gJohn. But "the word become flesh" seems an evolution from how Philo and Plutarch used it, and doesn't seem consistent with Platonism. How can an idealised form become real? To me it seems more aligned with the Jewish idea of the Torah being an actual version of the Logos.
The Logos doctrine is something you find in the Hebrew scriptures too but it seems to originally come from ancient Egyptian religion.

From "The Complete Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Egypt" by Richard H. Wilkinson:
The text alludes to the Heliopolitan creation account centered on the god Atum, but goes on to claim that the Memphite god Ptah preceded the sun god and that it was Ptah who created Atum and ultimately the other gods and all else 'through his heart and through his tongue'. The expression alludes to the conscious planning of creation and it's execution through rational thought and speech, and this story of creation ex nihilo as attributed to Ptah by the priests of Memphis is the earliest known example of the so-called 'logos' doctrine in whuch the world is formed through a god's creative speech...It lies before, and in line with, the philosophical concepts found in the Hebrew Bible where 'God said, let there be light, and there was light'(Genesis 1:3), and the Christian scriptures which state that 'In the beginning was the word[logos]...and the word was God...all things were made by him...
That's not a "Logos doctrine" in the Platonic sense AFAIT. "Logos" meant "word", "reason", etc. People talked about their own "logos". It didn't necessarily have anything to do with a "Logos doctrine" relating to God. Sometimes "reason" just meant "reason".
nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:57 pm
So Osiris and Jesus can both be seen as the Logos and they both die and resurrect.
Plutarch's Osiris was described in terms as "Logos" and also died and came back to life, but not as part of the same myth. The statement distorts what Plutarch meant, expressed that way.
nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:57 pm
The death symbolizes the partaking of the logos in the physical world or world of matter.
I don't understand what you mean by "partaking of the logos" here. It seems to be a segway into your point about mystery religions.
nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:57 pm
From "Reading Dionysus: Euripides’ Bacchae and the Cultural Contestations of Greeks, Jews, Romans, and Christians" by Courtney Friesen
Not only does Paul employ language that reflects mystery cults in several places, his Christian community resembles them in various ways.They met in secret or exclusive groups, employed esoteric symbols, and practiced initiations, which involved identification with the god’s suffering and rebirth.
I also think that Paul promoted a mystery religion version of Christianity. But it is important to keep in mind that there were no self-described "mystery religions": that's a modern term. There were cults that had initiations whereby the initiate shared in the suffering of the god or person being celebrated. They weren't big mysteries (if you'll pardon the pun.) It seems to me that early Christians had various versions of Christianity: mystery cults, magic cults, healings, prophecy, travelling carnival shows, exorcisms, Jewish, pagan, etc. Whatever got them through the day. Once you had a connection to the heavens, you used it in which any way you could!

That's not to say I am claiming you are completely wrong in the points above. It's only that I would be wary of distorting early writers to make them say something they aren't saying.
It is really important, in life, to concentrate our minds on our enthusiasms, not on our dislikes. -- Roger Pearse

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Re: Plutarch's Osiris, Philo's Logos, and Paul's Jesus.

Post by nightshadetwine » Sat Sep 08, 2018 11:54 pm

GakuseiDon wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 10:18 pm
That's not an intermediary between god and man. Plutarch describes a number of figures as "Logos"/"Word"/"Reason", but not necessarily as intermediaries to humanity IIUC. They bring reason and order to the world.
So I guess you could say to Plutarch Osiris is an intermediary between god and the physical realm rather than humanity? I understood it as Plutarch using Osiris' death and resurrection as part of his role as the Logos because he mentions the body of Osiris.
The two aspects of Osiris are also identified with his body and soul. Whereas the soul of Osiris is eternal and imperishable (ἀΐδιον καὶ ἄφθαρτον), his body suffers dissolution and destruction. According to Plutarch, “that which is and is intelligible and good (τὸ ὂν καὶ νοητὸν καὶ ἀγαθόν) is superior to destruction and change; but the images (εἰκόνες) from it with which the sensible and corporeal (τὸ αἰσθητὸν καὶ σωματικόν) is impressed (ἐκμάττεται), and the principles, forms, and likenesses (λόγοι καὶ εἴδη καὶ ὁμοιότητες) which this takes upon itself, like impressions of seals in wax (καθάπερ ἐν κηρῷ σφραγῖδες), are not permanently lasting (οὐκ ἀεὶ διαμένουσιν), but disorder and disturbance overtakes them” (Is. Os. 373a; trans. F. C. Babbitt, altered). Thus, the body of Osiris is the sum-total of forms immanent in matter.201 His soul, in turn, should be understood as the sum-total of the transcendent forms, described in 375a–b, where Plutarch says that whereas “the things that are scattered in objects liable to be affected (τὰ ἐν τοῖς παθητικοῖς διεσπαρμένα)” (trans. J. G. Griffiths) are subject to destruction, “God’s principles, forms, and emanations (οἱ λόγοι καὶ εἴδη καὶ ἀπορροαὶτοῦ θεοῦ) abide in heaven and stars and never change.
Yes, because the transcendent God is uncorrupted, pure and undefiled, so to interact with the corrupt world requires an intermediary. So that much is true. But I don't see that in Paul. I see something like that in the Gospel of John though.
Doesn't Paul see Jesus as a kind of intermediary between humanity and god? From what I understand Paul believed god raised Jesus and because of this humanity now can be "saved" or have eternal life through Jesus.
That's not a "Logos doctrine" in the Platonic sense AFAIT. "Logos" meant "word", "reason", etc. People talked about their own "logos". It didn't necessarily have anything to do with a "Logos doctrine" relating to God. Sometimes "reason" just meant "reason".
"Logos" here is just meant the Egyptian god creating everything through the word or speech like god in Genesis. John's logos is influenced by this idea because he calls Jesus the "word".

Would you say the Egyptian "Maat" is similar to the Platonic Logos?
Maat might be seen as a principle analogous to the Logos, divine reason and order. As Christians are told "In the beginning the Word[Logos] already was"(John 1:1), Atum announces that before creation, "when the heavens were asleep, my daughter Maat lived within me and around me."...daughter or aspect of the high god Atum, is at once a goddess and an idea, the personification of moral and cosmic order, truth and justice, that was as basic to life as breath itself...Maat represents the proper relationship between the cosmic and the earthly, the divine and the human...

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Re: Plutarch's Osiris, Philo's Logos, and Paul's Jesus.

Post by Joseph D. L. » Sat Sep 08, 2018 11:59 pm

Ptah is a closer equivalent of Logos, though Plutarch does call Osiris Logos

The Egyptian ntr, Hu, was the first word Atum uttered to speak creation into being.

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Re: Plutarch's Osiris, Philo's Logos, and Paul's Jesus.

Post by MrMacSon » Sun Sep 09, 2018 1:03 am

Joseph D. L. wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 11:59 pm

... Plutarch does call Osiris Logos
.
Interesting.

Joseph D. L. wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 11:59 pm
The Egyptian ntr, Hu, was the first word Atum uttered to speak creation into being.
I presume Hu has a soft breath-out sound, which could somewhat align with Yehweh supposedly being a soft breath in and breath out sound.

And I think that spirit = πνεῦμα, ατος, τό = pneuma = breath or wind (in Greek, at least)

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Re: Plutarch's Osiris, Philo's Logos, and Paul's Jesus.

Post by GakuseiDon » Sun Sep 09, 2018 3:08 am

nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 11:54 pm
GakuseiDon wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 10:18 pm
That's not an intermediary between god and man. Plutarch describes a number of figures as "Logos"/"Word"/"Reason", but not necessarily as intermediaries to humanity IIUC. They bring reason and order to the world.
So I guess you could say to Plutarch Osiris is an intermediary between god and the physical realm rather than humanity? I understood it as Plutarch using Osiris' death and resurrection as part of his role as the Logos because he mentions the body of Osiris.
Osiris is an intermediary between WHICH god and the physical realm/humanity, according to Plutarch?

And I don't know what you mean by "role as the Logos". "Logos" means "word" or "reason". Writers could talk about their own "logos", without it meaning anything other than "word" or "reason". Certainly, in the Christian context "Logos" came to have a special meaning.
nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 11:54 pm
Yes, because the transcendent God is uncorrupted, pure and undefiled, so to interact with the corrupt world requires an intermediary. So that much is true. But I don't see that in Paul. I see something like that in the Gospel of John though.
Doesn't Paul see Jesus as a kind of intermediary between humanity and god? From what I understand Paul believed god raised Jesus and because of this humanity now can be "saved" or have eternal life through Jesus.
Paul's Jesus doesn't seem to act as an intermediary, no. Not in the sense that Hermes was an intermediary. Paul's Jesus has a more specific cosmic role, along the lines that you mention above.
nightshadetwine wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 11:54 pm
"Logos" here is just meant the Egyptian god creating everything through the word or speech like god in Genesis. John's logos is influenced by this idea because he calls Jesus the "word".

Would you say the Egyptian "Maat" is similar to the Platonic Logos?
I don't know anything about the Egyptian "Maat", I'm sorry. But because someone or something is called "Logos", it doesn't mean "Platonic Logos". Platonism is the idea of ideal forms. If Maat is conceived as an ideal form, then yes, that is similar to the Platonic Logos. If Maat is not so conceived, then it isn't similar.
It is really important, in life, to concentrate our minds on our enthusiasms, not on our dislikes. -- Roger Pearse

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Re: Plutarch's Osiris, Philo's Logos, and Paul's Jesus.

Post by nightshadetwine » Sun Sep 09, 2018 9:59 am

GakuseiDon wrote:
Sun Sep 09, 2018 3:08 am
Osiris is an intermediary between WHICH god and the physical realm/humanity, according to Plutarch?
Plutarch's god.

Plutarch:
“God’s principles, forms, and emanations (οἱ λόγοι καὶ εἴδη καὶ ἀπορροαὶτοῦ θεοῦ) abide in heaven and stars and never change."
And I don't know what you mean by "role as the Logos". "Logos" means "word" or "reason". Writers could talk about their own "logos", without it meaning anything other than "word" or "reason". Certainly, in the Christian context "Logos" came to have a special meaning.
By "role as logos" I mean Plutarch calling Osiris the Logos. The same thing that Ivan Miroshnikov means.

From "The Gospel of Thomas and Plato : A Study of the Impact of Platonism on the Fifth Gospel" By Ivan Miroshnikov:
The double role of Plutarch's Osiris is determined by his intermediary status: in order to act as an intermediary between the transcendent God and the world, he needs to participate in both transcendence and immanence.

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Re: Plutarch's Osiris, Philo's Logos, and Paul's Jesus.

Post by GakuseiDon » Sun Sep 09, 2018 2:47 pm

nightshadetwine wrote:
Sun Sep 09, 2018 9:59 am
GakuseiDon wrote:
Sun Sep 09, 2018 3:08 am
Osiris is an intermediary between WHICH god and the physical realm/humanity, according to Plutarch?
Plutarch's god.

Plutarch:
“God’s principles, forms, and emanations (οἱ λόγοι καὶ εἴδη καὶ ἀπορροαὶτοῦ θεοῦ) abide in heaven and stars and never change."
I think you'll find that that God IS Osiris. My guess is that that is taken from here:
http://www.sacred-texts.com/cla/plu/pte/pte04.htm
  • LIX. But where Typhon intrudes, laying hold of the extremities, in this case, where she appears to be of sad countenance, and is said to mourn and be seeking after certain scattered members of Osiris, and to robe the same, [she is] receiving into her lap and concealing the things that were destroyed, in the same way as she again brings to light the things that are born, and sends them forth out of herself. For the things that be in the heavens and the stars, the reasons, forms, and emissions of the God are unchangeable, whereas those disseminated through the things subject to passion, namely, in earth, sea, vegetables, animals, are interchangeable, perishable, and buried: and again afterwards come to light once more, and are made visible by their births: for which reason the fable tells that Nephthys was the wife of Typhon, but that Osiris lay with her by stealth; because the extreme parts of Matter (which parts they denominate "Nephthys" and "End") are chiefly possessed by the destructive Power, whereas the generative and life-giving Principle distributes amongst them but a weak and dull seed, and which is destroyed by Typhon, except what little Isis takes up and saves and nourishes, and unites together, for on the whole this world is more good than bad, as Plato suspected, as well as Aristotle.
It is part of one of the explanations by Plutarch of the myth involving Osiris, Isis, Typhon and Nephthys. There is no separate God being referred to, and certainly no higher God that Osiris is being an intermediary to.
nightshadetwine wrote:
Sun Sep 09, 2018 9:59 am
By "role as logos" I mean Plutarch calling Osiris the Logos. The same thing that Ivan Miroshnikov means.

From "The Gospel of Thomas and Plato : A Study of the Impact of Platonism on the Fifth Gospel" By Ivan Miroshnikov:
The double role of Plutarch's Osiris is determined by his intermediary status: in order to act as an intermediary between the transcendent God and the world, he needs to participate in both transcendence and immanence.
I guess I'll need to read Miroshnikov to see what he means. Plutarch gives a number of interpretations of the Osiris and Isis myth, so perhaps he was referring to one of the older views that Plutarch provides rather than his Platonic interpretation.
It is really important, in life, to concentrate our minds on our enthusiasms, not on our dislikes. -- Roger Pearse

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