Thursday, August 13, 2015
American historian Richard Carrier spent six years researching the idea that Jesus was never a real person. Well, okay. But does it matter? Religion in general seems to me a series of stories, myths and legends invented by humans as guides to living a good life. Jesus and God are no different to, say, Zeus, Apollo or Winnie the Pooh. Helen said to me: everyone becomes a story in the end, which made me stop and think. This is immediately apparent when someone dies; at their funeral we swap stories of the recently deceased and may even find out something about them we didn't know. Their life has become a story; it's the main way we keep them alive – by relating stories about them: 'Do you remember when so-and-so did this or that?' Living people are stories too. Unless we're actually with that person, their life to us is a series of stories, be it recitals, anecdotes or gossip.