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Middle Eastern Spirituality Books

 

The Gospel Of Jesus: In Search Of His Original Teachings

John Davidson. Published by Element. 1067 Pages. 

Extremely readable and fascinating, this book digs deep to reveal the message of Jesus as it has never been seen before. Through examining the New Testament, a wealth of apocryphal and gnostic scriptures of the time, and writings of the early church leaders, the book reveals new insights about Jesus and his place in the world mystical tradition. Issues such as reincarnation, karma, meditation, vegetarianism, and the mystical nature of Jesus' true teachings are discussed amongst others, and plenty of documentary evidence for each topic is provided. The origins and history of the New Testament scriptures are covered in depth. Truly a work of immense scholarship, this book re-establishes Jesus firmly in the tradition of the great mystical teachers. It reveals his message to have been far more powerful than anything that has come down to us today through traditional Christianity. Cannot recommend this book enough!

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The Nag Hammadi Library

This one volume contains the definitive translation of the Gnostic Scriptures. The Nag Hammadi scriptures were unearthed in 1945 near a town of that name. They take up the story of the spiritual life of the Middle East where the Dead Sea Scrolls leave off. These scriptures contain a wealth of insight into the Judaism of the time and of the birth of Christianity. In these ancient writings, we see a very different world to the one presented by modern Christianity. Indeed, these marvelous works were suppressed and destroyed by the early church for that very reason. Much in these writings share a common heritage with eastern religions, and with mystical holy men/women throughout the ages. If you ever wanted to read these controversial and famous writings for yourself, this is the one-volume reference you really need. 

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The Original Jesus - The Buddhist Sources Of Christianity

Elmar R, Gruber & Holger Kersten.  Published By Element.

There are a LOT of alternative Jesus theories out there. However, this one is quite compelling. The idea that early Christianity - and indeed Jesus himself - might have been highly influenced by Buddhism is not nearly as wild as it might initially sound. The authors make a very convincing case by pointing out a number of key facts. First, international commerce was far more prevalent in the Ancient World than we may realise, and that with commerce also went philosophy and religion. Second, the number of parallels in both the teachings and the parables of the Buddha and Jesus Christ are so many and so close as to be extremely hard to explain in any other way. These ideas are explored in detail and more recent discoveries - such as the community at Qumran, the Q material,  and the Gnostic Gospels - are also discussed for the light they throw upon the subject. The Scriptures of Christianity and Buddhism are compared and amazing similarities are evident. Utterly fascinating and absorbing throughout, The Original Jesus will challenge what you may have believed about Christ, and may set the whole of his life and teachings in a substantially different historical context.

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The Jesus Mysteries - Was The "Original Jesus" A Pagan God?

Timothy Freke & Peter Gandy. Published By Thorsons.

Anyone who troubles to read beyond the well-structured orthodoxy of Christianity will know that all is not rosy. History reveals many valid alternative views and interpretations of Christ destroyed by the Church, often for purely political reasons. New sources - such as the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Nag Hammadi writings - make it quite clear that the teachings of Jesus did not actually offer much radically new material. Moreover, the story of the dying and resurrecting God is an old theme, most notably present in the Ancient Egyptian myth of Osiris. 

Now, in this challenging new book, the almost unthinkable question is asked: Did Jesus Christ actually live as a real live human being at all? Freke and Gandy present strong evidence to suggest not. They propose that the teachings and stories we associate with Christ actually arose from a pre-existing pagan god with almost identical characteristics, who had been worshipped for thousands of years beforehand. 

They probe all the available evidence for the actual existence of Jesus. They analyse the other teachings and movements extant at the time - Paganism, the Mystery Schools, Gnosticism. Their compelling detective work leads them to propose that (1) Christianity was based upon pagan myths, rewritten as the Gospel of Jesus Christ, (2) that the early Christians knew this perfectly well, and (3) that the truth of this has been covered up by the orthodox church for millennia. This book is fascinating and  well written. It may be the greatest heresy of the last few centuries or the most revolutionary discovery since the beginning of Christianity itself. You be the judge!

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The Dead Sea Scrolls Uncovered

Robert Eisenman & Michael Wise. Published By Penguin USA.

This book is the first complete translation and interpretation of 50 key documents that had Dead Se Scrolls Cover been withheld for over 35 years. The Dead Sea Scrolls provide a unique insight into the origins of both Judaism and Christianity. These documents are the literature of the Messianic movement of Palestine which was responsible for the uprising that eventually led to the the destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem. Much of what is revealed shows that they were virtually indistinguishable from early Christianity.

This book gives you both complete transcriptions into modern Hebrew characters, precise English translations of the 50 documents, along with expert commentary and background. Here you will read alternative presentations of the flood, prophecy, astrology, the Mysteries, divination and a whole lot more. 

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