What if Enoch pre-dates the Torah?

Discussion about the Hebrew Bible, Septuagint, pseudepigrapha, Philo, Josephus, Talmud, Dead Sea Scrolls, archaeology, etc.
StephenGoranson
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Re: What if Enoch pre-dates the Torah?

Post by StephenGoranson »

Some Buddhists, apparently, consider the Panchen Lama an incarnation of Amitabha Buddha.
ABuddhist
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Re: What if Enoch pre-dates the Torah?

Post by ABuddhist »

StephenGoranson wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 11:55 am Some Buddhists, apparently, consider the Panchen Lama an incarnation of Amitabha Buddha.
That is true, but I, as a non-Mahayana Buddhist, hold Amitabha Buddha to be foreign and mythical because he is not mentioned in the Pali Tipitaka which is my scripture; furthermore, that is why I specified "we can all agree in this forum" - because I am aware that if I were on a Buddhist forum, some posters would regard him as being as real as YHWH or Donald Trump (and more benevolent and more kind).
StephenGoranson
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Re: What if Enoch pre-dates the Torah?

Post by StephenGoranson »

As mentioned before, it is possible that someone else posting or reading here is Buddhist.
We two can agree that you do not speak for all Buddhists.
PS
I previously began a thread on Translation, saying, more or less, that no translation is above question.
By that, I did not mean that some translations, for some purposes, may or may not be considered, by some, better than others.
And, as noted before, some religious persons and practices are more welcoming to translations, or a given translation, than others. I think.
ABuddhist
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Re: What if Enoch pre-dates the Torah?

Post by ABuddhist »

StephenGoranson wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 1:06 pm As mentioned before, it is possible that someone else posting or reading here is Buddhist.
We two can agree that you do not speak for all Buddhists.
PS
I previously began a thread on Translation, saying, more or less, that no translation is above question.
By that, I did not mean that some translations, for some purposes, may or may not be considered, by some, better than others.
And, as noted before, some religious persons and practices are more welcoming to translations, or a given translation, than others. I think.
1. I never claimed to speak for all Buddhists on this forum. That having been said, I was wrong to state in a way which could be interpreted as meaning that I claimed to know with absolute certainty that no reader or user on this forum is a Buddhist believing in Amitabha Buddha and Sukhvati. I apologize for my oversight, and I have made the following change:
ABuddhist wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 11:14 am
John T wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 10:07 am Please remind me of what you actually believe and please provide citations to support it.

For examples: How many different sources were used to compile Genesis?
What century did they first get put into written form?

Do you agree with the atheists/mythicists on this forum that just like Jesus, Moses did not exist?

For the record, I believe both were indeed historical figures and religion has nothing to do with it. Buddha, not so much.
1. It is possible to be an atheist without being a mythicist. Tim O'Neill is an anti-mythicist atheist.

2. Some Buddhas, we can all agree in this forum, I think, are not historical figures, such as Amitabha Buddha, whose career is said to have begun before the Earth came into existence and to be occurring presently on the world Sukhavati (which is not Earth). As for the historicity of Shakyamuni Buddha, the founder of Buddhism in our planet and our period of time, a good introduction to determining which texts and traditions should be used, if any, to determine whether he was historical is "The Authenticity of the Early Buddhist Texts", by Bhikkhu Sujato and Bhikkhu Brahmali, which can be read here: https://ocbs.org/wp-content/uploads/201 ... ticity.pdf
2. Buddhism is certainly a religious tradition with a long history of translations, often with multiple translations of a Budsdhist text existing. This is the case not only in English and other modern languages but also in Classical Chinese. I recall citing, in a discussion with you and Gmirkin about difficulties in scribes working with texts as they were translated, the following things:
ABuddhist wrote: Wed Aug 17, 2022 1:26 pm
Russell Gmirkin wrote: Wed Aug 17, 2022 1:01 pm You should be aware of the apparently universal practice of translation, in which one person (oftentimes the author) reads the original while the scribe or secretary writes down the translation. That’s how it happened in the ancient world, according to contemporary research (see van der Lowe 2008). The Aramaisms and Egyptianisms in the LXX (Pentateuch) point to the amanuensis or scribe as likely of Egyptian Jewish heritage (Joosten 2010). So any conclusions regarding the language skills of the translator would apply primarily to the amanuensis, not the author / reader.
With all due respect, would this process not make the secretary/scribe the translator, or should the reference to "one person (oftentimes the author) reads the original" refer to a translator/reader reading and translating a text while a scribe writes down only the translation?

That having been said, my own readings about translations (from Indian languages into Middle Chinese) in the book "Bodhisattvas Of The Forest And The Formation Of The Mahayana: A Study And Translation Of The Rastrapalapariprccha-sutra", by Daniel Boucher confirms that translation was a multifaceted process, with reader/oral translator and scribe often not co-ordinating their efforts as well as modern translators would regard as appropriate. In the Chinese context, the scribe may not have known the original language, and one famous translator into Chinese, Kumarajiva, was illiterate in Chinese!

As a personal note, in highschool, my disabilities meant that I dictated my translation from Latin texts to a scribe who knew no Latin - and I had to constantly correct her misinterpretations of my translations.
Russell Gmirkin wrote: Wed Aug 17, 2022 1:01 pm involves a misunderstanding of what was referred to as the Septuagint, probably on your part.
To clarify your theory. do you think that this involved a misinterpretation in which the Septuagint was assumed to be the Pentateuch, or another misunderstanding?
ABuddhist wrote: Thu Aug 18, 2022 12:09 pm
StephenGoranson wrote: Thu Aug 18, 2022 10:33 am I was asked for an example. I gave an example.
A single example of a translation's error, however, can reveal much more systemic problems in terms of the translator or scribe's understanding of the original language than what you or Gmirkin have given. For example, the scribe into Chinese from Sanskrit of the Vairocanābhisaṃbodhi Sūtra [Taishō Tripiṭaka 18:848], as noted by the translator of the Vairocanābhisaṃbodhi Sūtra into English from Chinese Rolf W. Giebel (in "The Vairocanābhisaṃbodhi Sūtra", Numata Center for Buddhist Research and Translation, 2005 on page 279), apparently confused the Sanskrit word bala ("strength") with the Sanskrit word bāla ("male child") in a passage which is an extended analogy about a seed in which the Sanskrit word bala ("strength") makes more sense.
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John T
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Re: What if Enoch pre-dates the Torah?

Post by John T »

I think, therefore I'm mistaken.
I think that I understand, therefore I understand nothing.

Is that how it works in the world of Buddha mythicists?

While I'm at it, didn't Alexander the Great conquer the territory of Buddha?

If so then, isn't everything about Buddha actually a spin-off of Plato Timaeus?

Ask Neil, he knows everything. If you don't agree just ask him or Gimrkin. :cheeky:
ABuddhist
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Re: What if Enoch pre-dates the Torah?

Post by ABuddhist »

John T wrote: Tue Sep 13, 2022 3:57 pm I think, therefore I'm mistaken.
I think that I understand, therefore I understand nothing.

Is that how it works in the world of Buddha mythicists?

While I'm at it, didn't Alexander the Great conquer the territory of Buddha?

If so then, isn't everything about Buddha actually a spin-off of Plato Timaeus?
I can actually recommend to you some scholarship addressing whether the Buddha Shakyamuni was a mythical figure if you are interested; it is a view with which I disagree, but it has been discussed in ways much thorougher than you have researched the issue, as far as I am aware.

As for whether Alexander the Great conquered Shakyamuni Buddha's territory, the answer, on multiple levels, is no. Shakyamuni Buddha was active as an adult in Magadha and surrounding states, which are in what we now call north-Eastern India. Alexander the Great only conquered what we now call Pakistan and Afghanistan, although his empire and its eastern successor states maintained diplomatic relationships with the states arising from Magadha, against which wars were sometimes waged. Furthermore, the scholarly consensus is that Shakyamuni Buddha's birthplace was in Lumbini, Nepal, which was also not conquered by Alexander the Great.
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