By Philippe Walter
Unearths how Christian mythology has extra to do with long-standing pagan traditions than the Bible
• Explains how the church fathers knowingly included pagan components into the Christian religion to ease the transition to the hot faith
• Identifies pagan deities that have been integrated into all of the saints
• indicates how all of the significant vacations within the Christian calendar are modeled on pagan rituals and myths, together with Easter and xmas
In this huge learn of the Christian mythology that lively Europe within the heart a while, writer Philippe Walter finds how those tales and the vacation traditions attached with them are in response to long-standing pagan rituals and myths and feature little or no connection to the Bible. the writer explains how the church fathers knowingly integrated pagan parts into the Christian religion to ease the transition to the recent faith. instead of tear down the pagan temples in Britain, Pope Gregory the good recommended Saint Augustine of Canterbury so as to add the pagan rituals into the combo of Christian practices and rework the pagan temples into church buildings. rather than spiritual conversion, it was once easily a question of convincing the population to incorporate Jesus of their present non secular practices.
Providing broad documentation, Walter indicates which significant calendar days of the Christian 12 months are based on pagan rituals and myths, together with the excessive vacation trips of Easter and yuletide. analyzing hagiographic bills of the saints, he finds the starting place of those symbolic figures within the deities worshipped in pagan Europe for hundreds of years. He additionally explores how the identities of saints and pagan figures grew to become so intermingled that a few saints have been remodeled into pagan incarnations, akin to Mary Magdalene’s conversion into one of many Celtic women of the Lake.
In revealing the pagan roots of many Christian figures, tales, and rituals, Walter offers a brand new figuring out of the evolution of spiritual belief.
“Walter writes in a special educational culture that is going again to Jesse L. Weston and Sir James Frazier. He describes a wealthy advanced of pagan, ecu traditions that tell Christian ritual. In doing so, he illuminates ideals that underlie a few of our such a lot loved tales and practices. i'll suggest this publication to my students.” (Steve Harris, affiliate professor of English, collage of Massachusetts)
“It is mostly understood that Christianity reinforced its place early on within the well known brain by way of usurping and bending pagan rituals and sacred locales. during this bold scholarly treatise, professor of medieval French literature Walter marries the pagan and Christian calendars in nice aspect by way of interpreting old myths, saints, and celebrations. He visits All Saints Day, the Twelve Days of Christmas, Candlemas, Easter, Ascension, St. John’s Day of summer time, St. Peter’s Chains Day, and St. Michael’s Day to discover that those each year rounds, approximately forty days aside, proportion a legendary realm with the dates of Carnival, most sensible understood as ‘a religion--it used to be even the faith previous Christianity.’ Walter’s resources comprise acts of councils, confessors’ manuals, literary texts similar to Arthurian romances, hagiographic works, and medieval iconography. whereas he doesn’t assault Christianity on its religious advantages, he concludes boldly that ‘Christianity might have had no probability of enforcing itself within the West if, on sure issues of dogma and rites, it had no longer spoke back to the spiritual wishes of the switched over pagans.’ . . . This quantity makes a robust scholarly contribution to figuring out the evolution of trust, the place ‘it is necessary to appreciate that not anything has been misplaced or created.’” (Publishers Weekly)
About the Author
Philippe Walter is a professor of medieval French literature on the Université Stendhal in Grenoble. He has released various books in regards to the center a long time and has overseen the modifying and translation of the Grail romances for the distinguished Bibliotheque de l. a. Pléiade. He lives in France.
See all Editorial Reviews
Christian Mythology - The Revelations of Pagan Origins via Philippe Walter. Painstakingly researched, Walter begins initially of the 12 months, explains the Pagan origins of each vacation or dinner party day and the way the church attempted to hide them up, Christianize them or spoil them. He explains what number Pagan Gods and Goddesses and different deities have been switched over to Christian “saints” in an try to trap the Pagans into Christianity. Very fascinating e-book and a must-read for somebody that has ever wondered the credibility of the Christian faith or for Pagans attracted to studying in regards to the roots of Pagan ideals and practices. I learn it correct after i stopped Pagan & Christian Creeds, Their which means & starting place via Edward wood worker which was once additionally a great publication regarding Pagan ideals and their origins. I enjoyed this publication and provides it five stars.
Thoroughly researched and dense with info, this booklet sheds gentle at the origins of Christian vacations, saints, or even the lifetime of Jesus. there was a lot dialogue in contemporary a long time approximately what's truth (and what's poetic license) within the well-known tales approximately early Christianity. Professor Walter takes all of it a step extra as he records the proof aiding the idea that a lot of Christianity used to be merged into present pagan ritual and symbolism. He explains how the necessity to convey pagan worshippers into the hot faith superceded the necessity to effectively list ancient events.
Some readers can be distressed via those revelations, yet i believe so much of you may be intrigued to resolve the mysterious roots of 1 of the world’s significant religious traditions. for lots of New realization readers it will likely be a reduction to determine that the faith within which they have been raised is de facto tied to normal cycles and customary transcendent stories in spite of everything. I hugely suggest this booklet for its perception and a focus to aspect. It definitely offers readers a lot to imagine about.
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Good publication on background of faith. definite, Christianity DID comprise components of prior religions. faith is part of tradition and civilization which evolves as do others.
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Extra info for Christian Mythology: Revelations of Pagan Origins
It is wrong to say that the myths preceding Christianity were not preserved and that we lack documentation of these myths. To the contrary, there is an abundance of such documentation. Pre-Christian myths have been conserved in pieces in the hagiographic puzzle constructed throughout the Middle Ages. It is simply necessary that we learn how to find and decipher them. Only a comparative method can aptly extract from hagiographic texts the elements of pagan culture they contain and the authentic mystical thought that governs them.
Hagiographic liter ature in fact forms a veritable pagan mythological code for which no one has yet truly grasped the key (especially not those specialists in Christian hagiography who still believe that a saint's celebration day is the anniver sary of his or her death). It is wrong to say that the myths preceding Christianity were not preserved and that we lack documentation of these myths. To the contrary, there is an abundance of such documentation. Pre-Christian myths have been conserved in pieces in the hagiographic puzzle constructed throughout the Middle Ages.
A rereading of the Amiens episode of the cloak Martin cut in half can confirm the presence of coded mythological motifs. Folk stories, in fact, offer many instances comparable to this charity of Saint Martin, the motif of the young man who has nothing but gladly and generously does a fa vor for someone who begs his aid. Most often in the hagiography the per son in need of assistance is Christ himself or the Virgin in disguise, while in folktales he or she is most often a fairy in disguise. To reward the benefactor, the fairy (or Christ or the Virgin) gives to the one who has helped a magic object most often a talisman (a chain or wand, for in stance) or an animal (a golden goose) .