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docyabut2

Was Jesus real?

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Guyver
6 hours ago, Desertrat56 said:

No because I don't think that Jesus is real (there are plenty of people named Jesus through out milinia, but none of them were born to save humans from anything)  It's just that those evangelists and fundamentalists who claim Jesus will save them from what ever foolish choices they make are not following what we were taught that The Jesus taught.

I totally agree.  I think if there be a God it knows everything…..but aside from that I don’t have a clue what to believe about God.  This place we live in is filled with such opposites of pleasure and pain.

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third_eye

I won't pay mind to any God that got killed because of "love of mankind" just so there's someone else to blame and start obligatory mass killing to please his divine plan... to save the "world"

~

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Phantom309
4 hours ago, docyabut2 said:

Jesus was a real person.:) he taught love and forgiveness

I mean this in a very polite way Docy, but I'm thinking you have a lot of confirmation bias going on....!

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Mr Walker
1 hour ago, Guyver said:

 

 

18 hours ago, eight bits said:

That's the time period we're discussing, about two thousand years ago. And not just anybody living two thousand years ago, but participants in the culture that gave rise to a widespread living culture today, the one both you and I grew up in. That ancient culture left works behind whose authors discussed their mindsets, including their understanding of the natural world.

Reading their work today is mind-expanding. Knowledge and technology have come so far (the ancient authors didn't know the places where you and I were born existed). but the attitudes expressed? There are passages that could have been written yesterday and posted verbatim here at UM.

Yes, then and now people did things because their ancestors did those things, while the reason why the rituals began was long-lost, or in some cases replaced by newer rationalizations for symbolic acts. Fascinating as all that is, two thousand years ago is recent enough and in places well documented enough that we can have a pretty reliable notion of some of the attitudes that prevailed back then and there, at least among the literate.

They would still see people in costume. Even today, "method" actors "become" their characters in some psychological sense, sometimes there's even a physical dimension to the "transformation.". That people can take on the personality of another species is not without its own portion of wonder, even if no human ever really becomes a cat (charming though Nastassja Kinsky was in portraying the idea).

In any case, 10,000 years is 8,000 years too far back for understanding the first audiences' reactions to the Christian gospel stories.

 

Last point first 

No. I am not sure the y would have.

They might have "seen" ie perceived as reality,  humans become animals or animals become human or a mix of both 

That was considered quite normal and rational at the time 

You make the point tha t, even today, humans believe in  and see things that  you  don't think exist 

 

There is a graduated scale where science and knowledge replace  belief and magic 

  2000 years ago it was closer to magic than science Even a couple of hundred years ago knowledge was so limited that, in many parts of human life,  belief and mysticism were more influential than science 

(And when we speak of Christianity we speak of people from  Romans to Barbarians  with a huge difference  in technogly and superstation  

Again you make a point for ,me. 

Just maybe, the most educated and experienced humans of that time were less superstitious. or "gullible"  than everyone else 

That is true statically today  Plus, those with the most material well being have the least need for non material support, such as faith or beliefs  .

Even    if that were true  they made up a tiny percentage of the population and were unrepresentative of the general populace. It is true that their writings (and thus thoughts)  might exist because the y were the only ones literate enough to write things down 

However, the lived customs of ordinary people continue to this day, as you point out 

I have seen some people misinterpret ancient writings, again, because   the y cannot understand them through a modern mindset  OR because they need to interpret them to confirm their own beliefs and biases . eg Epicurus Democritus  Et al.  are often given as examples of ancient atheists but they were not  The y did not deny  that t gods existed, they only challenged, and in some cases changed, the conceptual structure of a god to a non- interventionist one.

Similar concepts are common today.  

 

Edited by Mr Walker

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jmccr8
5 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

 

Last point first 

No. I am not sure the y would have.

They might have "seen" ie perceived as reality,  humans become animals or animals become human or a mix of both 

That was considered quite normal and rational at the time 

You make the point tha t, even today, humans believe in  and see things that  you  don't think exist 

 

There is a graduated scale where science and knowledge replace  belief and magic 

  2000 years ago it was closer to magic than science Even a couple of hundred years ago knowledge was so limited that, in many parts of human life,  belief and mysticism were more influential than science 

(And when we speak of Christianity we speak of people from  Romans to Barbarians  with a huge difference  in technogly and superstation  

Again you make a point for ,me. 

Just maybe, the most educated and experienced humans of that time were less superstitious. or "gullible"  than everyone else 

That is true statically today  Plus, those with the most material well being have the least need for non material support, such as faith or beliefs  .

Even    if that were true  they made up a tiny percentage of the population and were unrepresentative of the general populace. It is true that their writings (and thus thoughts)  might exist because the y were the only ones literate enough to write things down 

However, the lived customs of ordinary people continue to this day, as you point out 

I have seen some people misinterpret ancient writings, again, because   the y cannot understand them through a modern mindset  OR because they need to interpret them to confirm their own beliefs and biases . 

 

Hi Walker

Of course that might work if everyone actually believed the same thing, history does show that there were non-believers recorded and we have had this discussion before will refresh your memory.

https://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/disbelieve

Despite being written out of large parts of history, atheists thrived in the polytheistic societies of the ancient world – raising considerable doubts about whether humans really are “wired” for religion – a new study suggests.

The claim is the central proposition of a new book by Tim Whitmarsh, Professor of Greek Culture and a Fellow of St John’s College, University of Cambridge. In it, he suggests that atheism – which is typically seen as a modern phenomenon – was not just common in ancient Greece and pre-Christian Rome, but probably flourished more in those societies than in most civilisations since.

As a result, the study challenges two assumptions that prop up current debates between atheists and believers: Firstly, the idea that atheism is a modern point of view, and second, the idea of “religious universalism” – that humans are naturally predisposed, or “wired”, to believe in gods.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_atheism

Atheism is in the broadest sense a rejection of any belief in the existence of deities.[1][2][3][4] In a narrower sense, atheism is specifically the position that there are no deities and any statements to the contrary are false ones.[1][2][5][6] This is not to be confused with 'negative atheism' (or agnosticism) which declares that there is no evidence or knowledge about gods or god and thus has no belief in reference to a God or gods.[7] It is an important distinction because young children are not 'atheists' simply because they have no view on God or gods. The infant would have no evidence for any view on the topic. The English term 'atheist' was used at least as early as the sixteenth century and atheistic ideas and their influence have a longer history.

In the East, a contemplative life not centered on the idea of deities began in the sixth century BCE with the rise of Indian religions such as Jainism, Buddhism, and various sects of Hinduism in ancient India, and of Taoism in ancient China. Within the astika ("orthodox") schools of Hindu philosophy, the Samkhya and the early Mimamsa school did not accept a creator deity in their respective systems.[8]

Philosophical atheist thought began to appear in Europe and Asia in the sixth or fifth century BCE. Will Durant, in his The Story of Civilization, explained that certain pygmy tribes found in Africa were observed to have no identifiable cults or rites. There were no totems, no deities, and no spirits. Their dead were buried without special ceremonies or accompanying items and received no further attention. They even appeared to lack simple superstitions, according to travelers' reports.

 

-it-or-not-ancient-history-suggests-that-atheism-is-as-natural-to-humans-as-religion

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Mr Walker
7 hours ago, XenoFish said:

Why do people think they are important enough to be given miracles?

Plus, if god or jesus (any deity or demi-god will do) solved all our problems what exactly would be the point of living. Life wouldn't be challenging, there would be no growth.

I guess there are lots of philosophical answers to that 

Basically, however, every human has been saved by a miracle  (in christian theology ) Ie the sacrifice and resurrection of Christ  Thus ALL are worthy 

IMO EVERY    human is important enough to be of interest to "god"  and to be affected by miracles. 

Often it comes down to individual mindset

Some people  recognise a miracle in their lives, while others deny it  

Perfection means completion.

No living being is ever complete (including a god)  We all learn, grow, evolve and improve. 

Thus  even if all present problems were solved, new ones would emerge  

Life is a challenge, and that makes it fascinating and fun.  

But even in heaven (as described in christian theology ) humans will have challenges, work to do, and growth to achieve. 

 

 

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Mr Walker
8 minutes ago, jmccr8 said:

Hi Walker

Of course that might work if everyone actually believed the same thing, history does show that there were non-believers recorded and we have had this discussion before will refresh your memory.

https://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/disbelieve

Despite being written out of large parts of history, atheists thrived in the polytheistic societies of the ancient world – raising considerable doubts about whether humans really are “wired” for religion – a new study suggests.

The claim is the central proposition of a new book by Tim Whitmarsh, Professor of Greek Culture and a Fellow of St John’s College, University of Cambridge. In it, he suggests that atheism – which is typically seen as a modern phenomenon – was not just common in ancient Greece and pre-Christian Rome, but probably flourished more in those societies than in most civilisations since.

As a result, the study challenges two assumptions that prop up current debates between atheists and believers: Firstly, the idea that atheism is a modern point of view, and second, the idea of “religious universalism” – that humans are naturally predisposed, or “wired”, to believe in gods.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_atheism

Atheism is in the broadest sense a rejection of any belief in the existence of deities.[1][2][3][4] In a narrower sense, atheism is specifically the position that there are no deities and any statements to the contrary are false ones.[1][2][5][6] This is not to be confused with 'negative atheism' (or agnosticism) which declares that there is no evidence or knowledge about gods or god and thus has no belief in reference to a God or gods.[7] It is an important distinction because young children are not 'atheists' simply because they have no view on God or gods. The infant would have no evidence for any view on the topic. The English term 'atheist' was used at least as early as the sixteenth century and atheistic ideas and their influence have a longer history.

In the East, a contemplative life not centered on the idea of deities began in the sixth century BCE with the rise of Indian religions such as Jainism, Buddhism, and various sects of Hinduism in ancient India, and of Taoism in ancient China. Within the astika ("orthodox") schools of Hindu philosophy, the Samkhya and the early Mimamsa school did not accept a creator deity in their respective systems.[8]

Philosophical atheist thought began to appear in Europe and Asia in the sixth or fifth century BCE. Will Durant, in his The Story of Civilization, explained that certain pygmy tribes found in Africa were observed to have no identifiable cults or rites. There were no totems, no deities, and no spirits. Their dead were buried without special ceremonies or accompanying items and received no further attention. They even appeared to lack simple superstitions, according to travelers' reports.

 

-it-or-not-ancient-history-suggests-that-atheism-is-as-natural-to-humans-as-religion

Basically again this is a false understanding of the ancient's beliefs /thought processes  

Not many if any totally rejected the existence of gods ie were atheists 

There was no logical reason to and good reasons NOT to . 

However some rejected the contemporary understanding of a god based on their observation of the real world, and logic 

Thus some claimed that while gods were (or could be)  real, the y did not intervene in human lives either for good or for harm.

That was quite a radical shift in perspective at the time. 

As far as i know there are NO human tribes or groups without faiths or beliefs 

In part it defines what it means to be human and separates us from  all other animals 

Some modern professionals (perhaps materialists themselves)   define faith/belief too narrowly The y made that mistake and learned their lesson after initial studies of the piraha   people of the Amazon 

 

Ps as discussed a long time ago most of those religions /faiths you cite DO include beliefs in some form of god or higher powers, or in an element of the spiritual in the human soul

Less than10 % of modern humans have no belief in  anything spiritual; or "higher" than the material world 

And that is with our science technology and modern education 

Up until a few hundred years ago tha t percentage would have been a fraction of the present  ie a couple of percent a t most 

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jmccr8
5 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

Ps as discussed a long time ago most of those religions /faiths you cite DO include beliefs in some form of god or higher powers, or in an element of the spiritual in the human soul

What are you on about religions have gods and just because there is a religion in a culture does not mean that everyone in that culture does believe and am not suggesting that they represent a majority of that culture only that there were significant numbers of them that they were included as a part of those cultures.

10 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

Less than10 % of modern humans have no belief in  anything spiritual; or "higher" than the material world 

I don't include the in name only religious as representing the the percentages so we differ in perspective there.

12 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

Up until a few hundred years ago tha t percentage would have been a fraction of the present  ie a couple of percent a t most 

I disagree and have given my reasons

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eight bits
4 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

Even    if that were true  they made up a tiny percentage of the population and were unrepresentative of the general populace. It is true that their writings (and thus thoughts)  might exist because the y were the only ones literate enough to write things down 

I'm unsure that any point of mine, or any on-topic point in general, turns crucially on what percentages of the total population held this or that idea, so long as the idea was known and available for consideration at the time in question. Early Christians themselves were "a tiny percentage of the population and were unrepresentative of the general populace" for their first 100 years or so.

That they existed at all is what raises the topic question (Was Jesus real?). What little we know about them for that first century comes from people with enough education and leisure time to write letters, story gospels, sayings collections, and books about the imagined acts of early Christian leaders. What ordinary adherents thought about the authenticity of stories about Jesus's earthly career is simply lost to us, except on the assumption that the people whose writings we can read were leaders in their communities, and so to some extent they spole for thier followers.

To the extent that numbers or percentages of non-believers are of some inherent interest, I think @jmccr8 has done well to remind you of earlier discussions we've had here at UM.

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third_eye

You either pretend to OR become Christian, or you die, you diss the cross/crucifix , you die... You call any other god, God, you die, or you get burned alive and hope this God loves you and you survive ...

And remember, this God loves you 

~

Edited by third_eye
He he he
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The_Phantom_Stranger
6 minutes ago, third_eye said:

You either pretend to OR become Christian, or you die, you diss the cross/crucifix , you die... You call any other god, God, you die, or you get burned alive and hope this God loves you and you survive ...

And remember, this God loves you 

~

Jesus actually forgave all these things in the Gospel. The only thing that matters to Christ is the denial of the Holy Spirit. Pagans believe in the Holy Spirit even if they call it something different. The absolute denial of all spiritual activity, the absolute denial of ghosts and all paranormal activity is the ultimate sin of this lifetime. It means your own Spirit is too filthy to see through the materialism of this life.

God made a prophecy to Israel in ancient times. This prophecy was a curse on Israel. That he no longer wanted some of his tribes to worship him. He would cast off these tribes into paganism and bring them back to him later in life. I believe this curse is on my generation. In church many truths were denied as a child, and it was common sense even good that we would leave to find these truths in paganism. Then however, God would call us back later in life to put all these missing pieces back together. As a God of the whole truth, not a lying simple God. 

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jmccr8
1 hour ago, Green Lion said:

God made a prophecy to Israel in ancient times. This prophecy was a curse on Israel. That he no longer wanted some of his tribes to worship him. He would cast off these tribes into paganism and bring them back to him later in life. I believe this curse is on my generation. In church many truths were denied as a child, and it was common sense even good that we would leave to find these truths in paganism. Then however, God would call us back later in life to put all these missing pieces back together. As a God of the whole truth, not a lying simple God. 

 

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third_eye

The One True Bob... 

Quote

 

[00.03:26]

~

 

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XenoFish
2 hours ago, third_eye said:

You either pretend to OR become Christian, or you die, you diss the cross/crucifix , you die... You call any other god, God, you die, or you get burned alive and hope this God loves you and you survive ...

And remember, this God loves you 

~

I've had better confirmation bias with other entities. The middle eastern god comes with too much baggage.

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jmccr8
41 minutes ago, XenoFish said:

I've had better confirmation bias with other entities.

Hi Xeno

Just for the sake of curiosity what was the origin of those entities?

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XenoFish
5 minutes ago, jmccr8 said:

Hi Xeno

Just for the sake of curiosity what was the origin of those entities?

Whatever occult text I was using and the occasional fictional characters. 

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jmccr8
Just now, XenoFish said:

Whatever occult text I was using and the occasional fictional characters. 

Hi Xeno

Thanks for being honest. :tu:

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third_eye
1 minute ago, XenoFish said:

Whatever occult text I was using and the occasional fictional characters. 

Everybody had their own ideas about heaven... 

Quote

web1_photo_76.jpg

~

 

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Abramelin
On 9/12/2021 at 8:14 PM, Abramelin said:

Docy, as the un-believer I am, I can tell you that the most convincing book about Jesus being a real living person was Patrick Tilley's "Mission".

It is a kind of scifi story for those who have reading problems, but in reality it is crammed full with gnostic ideas. And lots of other 'inspirited literature'. (I wrote a long list on a blanc page at the end of the book; all books I possess).

Edited to add:

Reviews on Amazon.

You can read it online:

https://full-english-books.net/english-books/full-book-mission-169328-read-online

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Mr Walker
16 hours ago, eight bits said:

I'm unsure that any point of mine, or any on-topic point in general, turns crucially on what percentages of the total population held this or that idea, so long as the idea was known and available for consideration at the time in question. Early Christians themselves were "a tiny percentage of the population and were unrepresentative of the general populace" for their first 100 years or so.

That they existed at all is what raises the topic question (Was Jesus real?). What little we know about them for that first century comes from people with enough education and leisure time to write letters, story gospels, sayings collections, and books about the imagined acts of early Christian leaders. What ordinary adherents thought about the authenticity of stories about Jesus's earthly career is simply lost to us, except on the assumption that the people whose writings we can read were leaders in their communities, and so to some extent they spole for thier followers.

To the extent that numbers or percentages of non-believers are of some inherent interest, I think @jmccr8 has done well to remind you of earlier discussions we've had here at UM.

You are right It was an(interesting ) digression into another question

However it goes to how people of the time perceived realty ie most humans believed in miracles and non material aspects to life 

(indeed according to many sources over 90% of modern humans still say that they do )

This  goes to how books like the gospels  (indeed any ancient writings) were written and read. While in part moral analogies etc it's more than likely that the readers and writers BELIEVED in the literal truth of the narratives within them. 

you (appear) to tend to assume a modern perspective ie  that the gospels were lies deliberately and knowingly constructed by men who sought power over others .

That simply doesn't fit the teaching or the nature of early Christianity  ie  you appear to be saying that the writers, being educated men, were probably atheists themselves  who did not believe in miracles or divine beings  That impossible to substantiate  and highly unlikely 

it is an almost universal error among humans  to think that humans have always thought as we do, or known what we do,  or that moral values/ right and wrong etc are absolutes and unchanging 

 

I remember our previous debate.

You didn't accept my sources or argument then, but it remains the same now People mis read modern scholars to take what the y want  from them 

eg the source provided by Jay did NOT say that ancient writers had no belief in gods or were atheists. Only that h they didnt believe  in the current forms of gods of their times,  because those current forms didn't fit what they could observe  

Sure the y could determine that thunder and lighting were forces of nature, not  gods.

But how to explain the very existence of humans, let alone our nature and unique capabilities among all animals on earth ?

In general the y still believed in gods because there was no other explanation for human beings and the ecology of earth.

Some, however, saw gods as remote beings which/who did not intervene in human affairs and thus did not need to be worshipped or placated.  

 

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eight bits
7 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

This  goes to how books like the gospels  (indeed any ancient writings) were written and read. While in part moral analogies etc it's more than likely that the readers and writers BELIEVED in the literal truth of the narratives within them. 

That might well vary among the gospels, and there could easily heve been a diversity of views among readers. The dominant view about each book might have changed over time, too. That, in turn, may have varied as the dominant uses of the books change. Are they being used to recruit, for beginners to study, to record lore for the benefit of adepts, to offer readings for weekly meetings (as the Jews would read Jewisih writings at their weekly synagogue meetings), ...?

Recall that you don't have to believe that Moses literally walked across the dry floor of the Red Sea to be a Jew. Yet, you would hear that part of Exodus read to you now and then at the synagogue. Even if you thought "well, that's a crock," you'd still be Jewish, because your mother was.

Why couldn't adherence to the earliest Christianity have been similar? Maybe you call BS on the story that Jesus walked on the surface of the Sea of Galilee, but you'd still be Christian, because you believed in other things, maybe exorcism or other healing ("There must be something to this ...").

"Biblical literalism," might be like fashion, maybe a perspective that comes and goes in popularity over time. We have some remarks by Origen (third century) that suggest (1) gospel literalism was popular in his time, but (2) literalism was impractical because of the familiar contradictions among the accounts, so (3) the solution is to see the gospels as offering figurative, not literal truths.

Living Biblical literalism seems to have welled up in 19th Century or so, and we can see for ourselves that it currently encounters much oppositinn from a widely held "spiritual truth" perspective in Christian circles.

8 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

you (appear) to tend to assume a modern perspective ie  that the gospels were lies deliberately and knowingly constructed by men who sought power over others .

I've never made that argument about the gospel authors.

8 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

That simply doesn't fit the teaching or the nature of early Christianity  ie  you appear to be saying that the writers, being educated men, were probably atheists themselves  who did not believe in miracles or divine beings  That impossible to substantiate  and highly unlikely 

I doubt that Matthew, Luke and John were atheists, based on their writing and comparing their writing with Mark. I don't have any strong opinion about what Mark's religious views were at the time he wrote his book. I would not guess "probably atheist."

Belief in miracles is a different issue than atheism, and even what constitutes a miracle may differ among authors and readers. IMO, both Mark and John at least acknowledge that skeptcism about miracles existed in some of their audience members. The authors themselves? I don't know what they believed.

 

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third_eye

Let's try this... 

Quote

 

[00.04:54]

~

 

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onlookerofmayhem

 

 

 

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jmccr8
17 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

However it goes to how people of the time perceived realty ie most humans believed in miracles and non material aspects to life 

Hi Walker

According to you they still do, what you fail to consider is that in the past not everyone believed in a god or that they were as intelligent as their modern counterparts. The conditions we live in doesn't change our capacity to be intelligent.

18 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

eg the source provided by Jay did NOT say that ancient writers had no belief in gods or were atheists. Only that h they didnt believe  in the current forms of gods of their times,  because those current forms didn't fit what they could observe  

You obviously did not read  what was said.

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Guyver
8 hours ago, onlookerofmayhem said:

 

 

 

This is an excellent presentation of the facts, IMo…and a perfect addition to the thread topic.  Of particular note, is that while it can be considered likely that a person named Jesus did exist, his nature  is not something we can know.  So,his divine nature is something that is excepted purely on faith, unless of Jesus himself personally appears to you and says hello.  That would certainly make him divine in some way as I see it.

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