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Pythagoras and Jesus Parallel


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#1    hairston630

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Posted 20 August 2008 - 10:53 PM

I came across an interesting subject and found it intriguing, so I thought I would present it to the forums to get some input and thoughts on the subject.  Its the alleged parallel between the Jesus of the New Testament (6 B.C.E.-33ad?) and Pythagoras of the 6th Century BCE.

I will quote an excerpt from an article by Dr Joshua David Stone:

"There is an interesting story about Pythagoras that was told that demonstrates His remarkable powers. Pythagoras, in His travels, apparently one day came across some fishermen who were drawing up their nets which were filled with fish. Pythagoras told the fishermen that He could tell them the exact number of fish they had caught, which the fishermen thought to be an impossible task, given how many were caught in the nets. The fishermen said that if He was right they would do anything He said. They counted all the fish and Pythagoras was totally accurate in His estimate. He then ordered the fishermen to return the fish to the sea and for some mystical reason none of them died. Pythagoras paid the fishermen for the price of the fish and left for Crotona. Incidents like this caused Pythagoras fame to spread. During one of His lectures in Italy it was said that He gained 2000 disciples from that one lecture alone." http://www.iamuniversity.ch/Pythagoras-and-Biosophy

In this story, though it is not mentioned in this excerpt, Pythagoras counted 153 fish.  Take note of that number especially.  The number 153 was most significant for being the denominator in the closest fraction known, at the time.   Now we go to the story of Jesus and the fishermen in John 21:1-11.

"After these things Jesus manifested Himself again to the disciples at the Sea of Tiberias, and He manifested Himself in this way.  Simon Peter, and Thomas called Didymus, and Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two others of His disciples were together.  Simon Peter said to them, "I am going fishing." They said to him, "We will also come with you."  They went out and got into the boat; and that night they caught nothing.  But when the day was now breaking, Jesus stood on the beach; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus.  So Jesus said to them, "Children, you do not have any fish, do you?" They answered Him, "No." And He said to them, "Cast the net on the right-hand side of the boat and you will find a catch." So they cast, and then they were not able to haul it in because of the great number of fish.  Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, "It is the Lord."  So when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put his outer garment on (for he was stripped for work), and threw himself into the sea. But the other disciples came in the little boat, for they were not far from the land, but about one hundred yards away, dragging the net full of fish.  So when they got out on the land, they saw a charcoal fire already laid and fish placed on it, and bread.  Jesus said to them, "Bring some of the fish which you have now caught."  Simon Peter went up and drew the net to land, full of large fish, a hundred and fifty-three; and although there were so many, the net was not torn."

Between the stories we see a few parallels.  The one that strikes me the most is the number 153 and the role it played in the story.  Both stories include fishermen, nets, fish, and the number 153.  I see 2 possible theories to this parallel.  It could be that the writer of John was using the number 153 as a "generic" term for "many fish", since it was a common number at that time or, possibly, we have a writer using the pythagoras narrative to rewrite the story of Jesus as a means of proclaiming his divinity.  This appeared to be a common phenomenon in the times of Jesus and after.  I remain agnostic on the subject for now..Perhaps with more study I can come to a more solidified conclusion.  Please share your thoughts and theories!

Hairston

Edited by hairston630, 20 August 2008 - 10:57 PM.


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Posted 21 August 2008 - 01:04 AM

This is not the only parallel between jesus and other mystical figures in history. I recommend to anyone interested in this subject to read the book by Timothy Freke and Peter Gandy called The Jesus Mysteries.


#3    MARAB0D

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 01:46 AM

Good biography of Pythagoras in Eduard Schure's Great Initiates. Pythagoras was really seen as a sort of a Prophet and left his teaching which includes the first ever mentioning of Trinity, as God-Creator for him was representing number 1, which he called a Monad, and it existed in a form of two opposites, sort of +1 and -1, which pair was called Diad, altogether this was accounting to divine Triad. This remained in Hellenic paganism and later was converted in Trinity of the Christians.


#4    eight bits

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 12:23 PM

Hi, hairston

Both John and Luke have big catch stories, but they place the story at opposite ends of Jesus' career (recruiting disciples in Luke 5, post-resurrection in John). Luke has no "153." John does, but he is a frankly literary author. If 153 were already associated with fish in Hellenistic culture, then it is easy to believe that he would work into his book.

I have a hard time associating Pythagoras, a pre-Hellenisitic figure, with the number 153, especially in connection with fish. A reference would have helped the argument here.

"Pythagoras" is poorly documented, and there are strong suspicions both that many of his followers used the name, and also that stories about him would improve with the retelling.

If it occurred to one Hellenistic author, John, to work "153" into a fish story, then it would be unsurprising if  some other Hellenistic author (or even a later one) might also work "153" into a different fish story. If that was how 153 got into Pythagoras' fish story, then that would have been centuries after the fact.

In any case, the stories are very different, despite the common element of fishing. Jesus' feat was to know that fish could be caught in the face of expert disagreement (especially in the Luke version), while Pythagoras accurately estimated the number of fish already caught. The latter feat, while impressive, is within natural human ability, while the former (presumably the point of telling the story) suggests properly miraculous control of the fish.

It is more-or-less uncontroversial that the early Chrisitian movement, especially after Paul undertook the mission to the Gentiles (as John's writings are), was heavily influenced by the dominant Hellenistic culture. So, it would be difficult to read more into this particular coincidence than that.

Which is not to say that the discussion is settled. Good post.

Edited by eight bits, 21 August 2008 - 12:26 PM.

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#5    GIDEON MAGE

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 12:27 PM

hairston630 on Aug 20 2008, 06:53 PM, said:

I came across an interesting subject and found it intriguing, so I thought I would present it to the forums to get some input and thoughts on the subject.  Its the alleged parallel between the Jesus of the New Testament (6 B.C.E.-33ad?) and Pythagoras of the 6th Century BCE.

Hairston, are you aware that this was from a New Age website?  Christians will now shun you forever for having read it!  I suspect that somehow, either the gospel writer was borrowing a little from Pythagoras.  Why not?  There seem to be a few quotes from Josephus in the n.t.  What is even more amazing is the quotes from the Septuagint, which at the time of Jesus only contained the Torah.  The later books were translated into Greek by Christians, but this never stopped the gospels from quoting them.  There are quite a few such anachronisms in the n.t.

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#6    hairston630

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 01:42 PM

eight bits on Aug 21 2008, 01:23 PM, said:

Hi, hairston

Both John and Luke have big catch stories, but they place the story at opposite ends of Jesus' career (recruiting disciples in Luke 5, post-resurrection in John). Luke has no "153." John does, but he is a frankly literary author. If 153 were already associated with fish in Hellenistic culture, then it is easy to believe that he would work into his book.

I have a hard time associating Pythagoras, a pre-Hellenisitic figure, with the number 153, especially in connection with fish. A reference would have helped the argument here.

"Pythagoras" is poorly documented, and there are strong suspicions both that many of his followers used the name, and also that stories about him would improve with the retelling.

If it occurred to one Hellenistic author, John, to work "153" into a fish story, then it would be unsurprising if  some other Hellenistic author (or even a later one) might also work "153" into a different fish story. If that was how 153 got into Pythagoras' fish story, then that would have been centuries after the fact.

In any case, the stories are very different, despite the common element of fishing. Jesus' feat was to know that fish could be caught in the face of expert disagreement (especially in the Luke version), while Pythagoras accurately estimated the number of fish already caught. The latter feat, while impressive, is within natural human ability, while the former (presumably the point of telling the story) suggests properly miraculous control of the fish.

It is more-or-less uncontroversial that the early Chrisitian movement, especially after Paul undertook the mission to the Gentiles (as John's writings are), was heavily influenced by the dominant Hellenistic culture. So, it would be difficult to read more into this particular coincidence than that.

Which is not to say that the discussion is settled. Good post.


Heres a reference in regards to the story (Here).  It appears that it was found in Plato's work (im not sure of the dates off hand).  Heres an excerpt:

"The precision of the number of fish has long been considered peculiar, and many scholars, throughout history, have argued that 153 has some deeper significance. Jerome, for example, claimed that the Greeks had identified that there were exactly 153 species of fish in the sea (modern marine biology puts the figure as something over 29,000). Mathematically, 153 is a triangular number, more precisely it is the sum of the integer numbers from 1 to 17 inclusive; more significantly, 153 also has the rare property that it is the sum of the cubes of its own digits (i.e. 153 = 1x1x1 + 5x5x5 + 3x3x3). In the time of Pythagoras, 153 was most significant for being one of the two numbers in the closest fraction known, at the time, to the true value of the square root of 3, the fraction in question being 265/153 (the difference between this and the square root of 3 is merely 0.000025......). This number frequently cropped up in geometry, most notably in a simple shape known as the vesica piscis, Greek for the body of the fish (because the shape looks like the body of a stereotyped fish), and the ratio of 153:265 was consequently known throughout the hellenic world as the measure of the fish. Jerome (ca. ... Marine biology is the Scientific study of the plants, animals and other organisms that live in the ocean. ... Euclid, detail from The School of Athens by Raphael. ... One hundred fifty-three is the natural number following one hundred fifty-two and preceding one hundred fifty-four. ... A triangular number is a number that can be arranged in the shape of an equilateral triangle. ... The integers consist of the positive natural numbers (1, 2, 3, …), their negatives (−1, −2, −3, ...) and the number zero. ... Bust of Pythagoras, Vatican Museum, Rome Pythagoras (approximately 582 BC–507 BC, Greek: υθαγόρας) was an Ionian (Greek) mathematician and philosopher, founder of the mystic, religious and scientific society called Pythagoreans, and is known best for the Pythagorean theorem which bears his name. ... In common usage a fraction is any part of a unit. ... In mathematics, the principal square root of a non-negative real number is denoted and represents the non-negative real number whose square (the result of multiplying the number by itself) is For example, since This example suggests how square roots can arise when solving quadratic equations such as or... Table of Geometry, from the 1728 Cyclopaedia. ... Construction diagram of the Vesica Piscis The vesica piscis (or ichthys) is a symbol made from two circles of the same radius, intersecting in such a way that the center of each circle lies on the circumference of the other. ... In number and more generally in algebra, a ratio is the linear relationship between two quantities of the same unit. ...


The fact that the measure of the fish was known to include 153, as one of its two numbers, and that the measure of how many fish the disciples are said to have caught is also 153, has not gone unnoticed by many scholars, with some suggesting that the number of fish in the New Testament episode is simply down to being the most familiar large number to the writer, or a deliberate reference to the geometric nomenclature as a sort of in-joke. It is significant that a story was told of Pythagoras, and later reported by Plato, that is very similar, even in wording, to the Biblical narrative of this event; some scholars have argued that that the entire Biblical episode is a coded reference to a geometric diagram, since Pythagoreanism saw geometry and numbers as having deep esoteric meaning, and via Hermeticism (and more minor routes) it was profoundly influential in the development of hellenic mystery religions, and in certain aspects of gnosticism, an early form of Christianity. While such themes would be unusual if the New Testament was only intended to be taken literally, several modern scholars, as well as most ancient followers of gnosticism, have argued that parts of the New Testament were written as gnostic documents. An in joke is a joke whose humour is clear only to those people who are in a group that has some prior knowledge (not known by the whole population) that makes the joke humorous. ... Plato ( Greek: λάτων, Plátōn, wide, broad-shouldered) (c. ... Pythagoreanism is a term used for the esoteric and metaphysical beliefs held by Pythagoras and his followers, the Pythagoreans, who were much influenced by mathematics and probably a main inspirational source for Plato and platonism. ... Hermes Trismegistus depicted as Caucasian in a medieval rendering. ... A mystery religion is any religion with an arcanum, or secret wisdom. ... This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ... This article discusses the relationship between Gnosticism and the New Testament. ... "


Hairston





#7    saturnrings

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 01:46 PM

hairston630 on Aug 20 2008, 11:53 PM, said:

I came across an interesting subject and found it intriguing, so I thought I would present it to the forums to get some input and thoughts on the subject.  Its the alleged parallel between the Jesus of the New Testament (6 B.C.E.-33ad?) and Pythagoras of the 6th Century BCE.

I will quote an excerpt from an article by Dr Joshua David Stone:

"There is an interesting story about Pythagoras that was told that demonstrates His remarkable powers. Pythagoras, in His travels, apparently one day came across some fishermen who were drawing up their nets which were filled with fish. Pythagoras told the fishermen that He could tell them the exact number of fish they had caught, which the fishermen thought to be an impossible task, given how many were caught in the nets. The fishermen said that if He was right they would do anything He said. They counted all the fish and Pythagoras was totally accurate in His estimate. He then ordered the fishermen to return the fish to the sea and for some mystical reason none of them died. Pythagoras paid the fishermen for the price of the fish and left for Crotona. Incidents like this caused Pythagoras fame to spread. During one of His lectures in Italy it was said that He gained 2000 disciples from that one lecture alone." http://www.iamuniversity.ch/Pythagoras-and-Biosophy

In this story, though it is not mentioned in this excerpt, Pythagoras counted 153 fish.  Take note of that number especially.  The number 153 was most significant for being the denominator in the closest fraction known, at the time.   Now we go to the story of Jesus and the fishermen in John 21:1-11.

"After these things Jesus manifested Himself again to the disciples at the Sea of Tiberias, and He manifested Himself in this way.  Simon Peter, and Thomas called Didymus, and Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two others of His disciples were together.  Simon Peter said to them, "I am going fishing." They said to him, "We will also come with you."  They went out and got into the boat; and that night they caught nothing.  But when the day was now breaking, Jesus stood on the beach; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus.  So Jesus said to them, "Children, you do not have any fish, do you?" They answered Him, "No." And He said to them, "Cast the net on the right-hand side of the boat and you will find a catch." So they cast, and then they were not able to haul it in because of the great number of fish.  Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, "It is the Lord."  So when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put his outer garment on (for he was stripped for work), and threw himself into the sea. But the other disciples came in the little boat, for they were not far from the land, but about one hundred yards away, dragging the net full of fish.  So when they got out on the land, they saw a charcoal fire already laid and fish placed on it, and bread.  Jesus said to them, "Bring some of the fish which you have now caught."  Simon Peter went up and drew the net to land, full of large fish, a hundred and fifty-three; and although there were so many, the net was not torn."

Between the stories we see a few parallels.  The one that strikes me the most is the number 153 and the role it played in the story.  Both stories include fishermen, nets, fish, and the number 153.  I see 2 possible theories to this parallel.  It could be that the writer of John was using the number 153 as a "generic" term for "many fish", since it was a common number at that time or, possibly, we have a writer using the pythagoras narrative to rewrite the story of Jesus as a means of proclaiming his divinity.  This appeared to be a common phenomenon in the times of Jesus and after.  I remain agnostic on the subject for now..Perhaps with more study I can come to a more solidified conclusion.  Please share your thoughts and theories!

Hairston


Great post:
We must note that during the human history as we know it, theres a pattern in which demonstrates high and low points of spiritual evolution, these affect political, historical, artistical and religious aspects of  the human history.

These high / low points are Hellenistic period, middle ages, Renaisanse, Reformation, Humanism, Romanticism, Rationalism Enlightenment and Modernism 9 in total which also stands for completion in numerology, and the Hermit in the Tarot)  wink2.gif

During this high / lows, material both written by Pythagoras and the apostles had become the subject of several adjustments, to fit in with the views of people who studied them OR to conceal the true meaning. It must become clear that Pythagoras was a mystic who saw the Universe throu numbers but this was/is derived from Jewism. The apostles on the other hand were trusted to write the Jesus teachings know as Gospels.

It is a good bet to look into alegories; the safest possible format that can be employed, in order to understand what the similarities were between -supposedly- irrelevant people and events, like the one you have given us in the analogy of  Pythagoras and the apostles. Thus, examining at least how similarities or coincidenses work  when they meet.

The Christian and Neo-Platonism writers employed allegory as an obvious metaphor, which anyway was not to be taken literally.
On the other hand, allegory was a heuristic device (stimulation of interest but mainly stand for encouragement for personal study), that made difficult to to transgress the esoteric text.

The esoteric meaning could not be exposed or adequate explicated for the following reasons: the writers had to protect themselves from persecution and the texts from popularization, which nevertheless could not be understood through reasoning and argument. In this light allegory, was a tool that it had been used in the author's discretion in order to protect texts from the uneducated students of the liberal arts (i.e. poetry, painting).

Allegory through the visual power of the metaphor transforms and divides the story into several layers of meaning. Therefore the similarities between the two may as well be nothing but a personal interpretation or is that reasoning and research, can be employed so to reach a conclusion that satisfies your curiosity. in short use your mind to interrpret it the way that suits you.

xx

Edited by saturnrings, 21 August 2008 - 02:12 PM.


#8    hairston630

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 01:47 PM

GIDEON MAGE on Aug 21 2008, 01:27 PM, said:

Hairston, are you aware that this was from a New Age website?  Christians will now shun you forever for having read it!  I suspect that somehow, either the gospel writer was borrowing a little from Pythagoras.  Why not?  There seem to be a few quotes from Josephus in the n.t.  What is even more amazing is the quotes from the Septuagint, which at the time of Jesus only contained the Torah.  The later books were translated into Greek by Christians, but this never stopped the gospels from quoting them.  There are quite a few such anachronisms in the n.t.


Im not really concerned if Christians shun me lol.  If something is true, then it needs to be brought forth.  I think there could be some borrowing as well.  Especially by the way the story was written.  Its very similar to other parallels found in the NT (Homers The Odyssey and the gerasine demoniac in the book of mark).  Im not sure about the quotes of Josephus being copied into the NT but I lean more towards Josephus using the bible as a source, not because its true but because he said he did and the fact that the only sources for the bible were the bible, so it was used (at least this is what ive observed or learned).


#9    saturnrings

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 01:54 PM

hairston630 on Aug 21 2008, 02:47 PM, said:

Im not really concerned if Christians shun me lol.  If something is true, then it needs to be brought forth.  I think there could be some borrowing as well.  Especially by the way the story was written.  Its very similar to other parallels found in the NT (Homers The Odyssey and the gerasine demoniac in the book of mark).  Im not sure about the quotes of Josephus being copied into the NT but I lean more towards Josephus using the bible as a source, not because its true but because he said he did and the fact that the only sources for the bible were the bible, so it was used (at least this is what ive observed or learned).

allegories or metaphors are devices taken from various sources, dont shun any of them in fact write them down in a journal  wink2.gif


#10    hairston630

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 01:59 PM

saturnrings on Aug 21 2008, 02:46 PM, said:

Great post:
We must note that during the human history as we know it, theres a pattern in which demonstrates high and low points of spiritual evolution, these affect political, historical, artistical and religious aspects of  the human history.

These high / low points are Hellenistic period, middle ages, Renaisanse, Reformation, Humanism, Romanticism, Rationalism Enlightenment and Modernism 9 in total which also stands for completion in numerology, and the Hermit in the Tarot)  wink2.gif

During this high / lows, material both written by Pythagoras and the apostles had become the subject of several adjustments, to fit in with the views of people who studied them OR to conceal the true meaning. It must become clear that Pythagoras was a mystic who saw the Universe throu numbers but this was/is derived from Jewism. The apostles on the other hand were trusted to write the Jesus teachings know as Gospels.

It is a good bet to look into alegories; the safest possible format that can be employed, in order to understand what the similarities were between -supposedly- irrelevant people and events, like the one you have given us in the analogy of  Pythagoras and the apostles. Thus, examining at least how similarities or coincidenseof the two when they meet.

The Christian and Neo-Platonism writers employed allegory as an obvious metaphor, which anyway was not to be taken literally.
On the other hand, allegory was a heuristic device (stimulation of interest but mainly stand for encouragement for personal study), that made difficult to to transgress the esoteric text.

The esoteric meaning could not be exposed or adequate explicated for the following reasons: the writers had to protect themselves from persecution and the texts from popularization, which nevertheless could not be understood through reasoning and argument. In this light allegory, was a tool that it had been used in the author's discretion in order to protect texts from the uneducated students of the liberal arts (i.e. poetry, painting).

Allegory through the visual power of the metaphor transforms and divides the story into several layers of meaning. Therefore the similarities between the two may as well be nothing but a personal interpretation or is that reasoning and research can be employed so to reach a conclusion that satisfies your curiosity. in short use your mind to interrpret it the way that suits you.

xx


Most excellent post.  You have put my thoughts into your own words (of course with a much better grasp than what I would have jumbled together).   thumbsup.gif


#11    GIDEON MAGE

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 03:19 PM

hairston630 on Aug 21 2008, 09:47 AM, said:

Im not really concerned if Christians shun me lol.  If something is true, then it needs to be brought forth.  I think there could be some borrowing as well.  Especially by the way the story was written.  Its very similar to other parallels found in the NT (Homers The Odyssey and the gerasine demoniac in the book of mark).  Im not sure about the quotes of Josephus being copied into the NT but I lean more towards Josephus using the bible as a source, not because its true but because he said he did and the fact that the only sources for the bible were the bible, so it was used (at least this is what ive observed or learned).

Don't you think that Josephus would have mentioned the n.t. if he knew about it?

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#12    hairston630

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 04:18 PM

GIDEON MAGE on Aug 21 2008, 04:19 PM, said:

Don't you think that Josephus would have mentioned the n.t. if he knew about it?


I thought he did? And his reasoning was not to make it as history but he used it because it was its only source in regards to the bible.  He was just quoting passages, not proclaiming them as history.  In other words, the only evidence for the bible was the bible itself.  I am open to the idea that your proposing and it wouldnt be a negative thing if what your saying is true.  It would only give me a better knowledge of what is accurate and what is not.


#13    eight bits

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 08:32 PM

Yes, hairston, I got the 153 in John's story, but I am still looking for it in Pythagoras' story.

Plato is a big place, and the apparent source for him having written such a story is wikipedia. Their remark about it, at

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catch_of_153_fish

does not inspire confidence.

Quote

is significant that a story was told of Pythagoras by Iamblichus[2], then Porphyry[3], and later reported by Plato, ...

That's a neat trick, since Porphyry and Iamblichus are post-Chrisitan figures, both living in the 3rd and into the 4th Centuries CE. Plato lived in the 5th and 4th Centuries before the Common Era. Pythagoras was (perhaps) 6th Century BCE, but you have the followers-using-the-name problem.

In any case, wiki-p offers no reference for Plato, although the other two are referenced.

And I can't find 153 in the Porphyry version, either.

Quote

In this story, though it is not mentioned in this excerpt, Pythagoras counted 153 fish. Take note of that number especially.

There just isn't much connection between the two stories without the number. Yes, Pythagoras would have been interested in the number, but he was interested in a lot of numbers.

His motive in the story (in the versions I can find) is to rescue the fish. He was a vegetarian. Now, since he paid for them anyway, he didn't need the showmanship. But Jesus, apparently, was all for cooking 'em up and chowing down.

Perhaps it is simply my limitation as a researcher, and you will come up with somebody putting 153 in the Pythagoras feat. But until then, sorry, its connection to John 21 is thin.

Still a good post, though, in establishing the popularity of "miracle stories" to promote charismatic teachers.

Edited by eight bits, 21 August 2008 - 08:35 PM.

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#14    hairston630

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 10:50 PM

eight bits on Aug 21 2008, 08:32 PM, said:

Yes, hairston, I got the 153 in John's story, but I am still looking for it in Pythagoras' story.

Plato is a big place, and the apparent source for him having written such a story is wikipedia. Their remark about it, at

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catch_of_153_fish

does not inspire confidence.


That's a neat trick, since Porphyry and Iamblichus are post-Chrisitan figures, both living in the 3rd and into the 4th Centuries CE. Plato lived in the 5th and 4th Centuries before the Common Era. Pythagoras was (perhaps) 6th Century BCE, but you have the followers-using-the-name problem.

In any case, wiki-p offers no reference for Plato, although the other two are referenced.

And I can't find 153 in the Porphyry version, either.


There just isn't much connection between the two stories without the number. Yes, Pythagoras would have been interested in the number, but he was interested in a lot of numbers.

His motive in the story (in the versions I can find) is to rescue the fish. He was a vegetarian. Now, since he paid for them anyway, he didn't need the showmanship. But Jesus, apparently, was all for cooking 'em up and chowing down.

Perhaps it is simply my limitation as a researcher, and you will come up with somebody putting 153 in the Pythagoras feat. But until then, sorry, its connection to John 21 is thin.

Still a good post, though, in establishing the popularity of "miracle stories" to promote charismatic teachers.


Very good finds EB.  I heard this information from a biblical scholar name Dr Robert M. Price on an audio series he does on a particular website.  When he said this, I immediately looked up this Pythagoras to see if it was valid.  I located one source confirming this (as I did not have time to meticulously study the subject) but as I searched deeper for its sources, I found the names Freke and Gandy.  I am rather opposed to their slipshod scholarship and one of the atheists of infidels.org (Richard Carrier) has successfully debunked a majority of their works and consider it very dubious.  So, unless there is a 153 associated with the Pythagoras narrative then we have no other option but to name this parallel suspect, as you have clearly stated in your posts.  Ill continue to search myself, but just as you, I havent found much of anything to confirm this either.  Thanks!

Edited by hairston630, 21 August 2008 - 10:52 PM.


#15    GIDEON MAGE

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Posted 22 August 2008 - 12:01 AM

Actually it gets wierder; I found an entire website devoted to #153...
http://www.ridingthebeast.com/numbers/nu153.php

very, very crackpot!
just a sample, not the whole page---

Quote

Occurrence
The number 153 is used 2 times in the Bible. (1 M 9,54; Jn 21,11)

The verb to pray is used 153 times in the OT and the word darkness, 153 times in the Bible. Also the name of Peter would occur 153 times in the NT.

The sum of the occurrences of the numbers in the Apocalypse written in their cardinal form and higher than 1 gives 153.

There are 153 numbers in the Bible, written in their cardinal form, that are multiple by 7. Here we don't count the number 7 itself and the number 280 thousands is interpreted in a quantitative manner, that is to say equal to 280000: 155 - 2 = 153.

In the NT, the sum of occurrences of numbers located between 17 and 153 - cardinal form only, because in this interval there is no ordinal number - gives 77.

Written in its cardinal form, the number 5 occurs 153 times in the Old Testament of the NRSV (more precisely in the books of the OT written in Hebrew only).

The word "priest" is quoted 152 in the NT of the NRSV and the priesthood word, 1 time, giving the total of 153. The word "beasts" appears 153 times in the biblical version of King James. The word "commandment" occurs 153 times in the OT of the NRSV (more precisely in books of the OT write in Hebrew only).

In the Bible, 153 numbers are multiple of twenty by counting "ten thousand times ten thousand" (Dn 7,10) as being an additional number equal to 100000000. And by counting all numbers which are either in the Bible of Jerusalem or the NRSV, we obtain in fact that 153 numbers are multiple of 25.

The sum of all numbers that are both in the Pentateuch of the Bible of Jerusalem and the one of NRSV, written in their cardinal form and higher than one, gives 153. Each of both Pentateuch separately gives 156 different numbers written in their cardinal form.

In the NRSV, the sum of occurrences of all numbers in the NT, equal or higher than 13 and written in their cardinal form, gives 153


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