Christianity existed prior to Constantine significantly so. It's the start of a terrible conspiracy theory to suggest otherwise. Much of the supposed external sources for a historical Jesus are from the second and third centuries and do no claim Jesus was real but expressly do establish that Christians actually existed. There was a push at the time to create one religion for one empire and Christianity did become the state religion afterwards. But there's every reason to suppose that any other religion could have done just as well and would likely have been more Roman than some middle-eastern blood cult.
You suggest that Christianity is a copycat religion, this is largely false and based on the work of Graves. Who was so sloppy as to be effectively worthless. Of the 16 mythical crucifixions most are outright fabrications or huge stretches to suppose that Osiris being cut into pieces is a "crufixition". Which isn't to say there weren't other blood magic crucified saviors, the Thracian God Zalmoxis is actually attested to in the BCE and was crucified and through his magical blood you can live forever in a spiritual realm. However, Graves never cited this. Rather he cited things like Chrishna who was not ever said to be crucified until there was a massive Christian influence in the region. And since these aren't properly attested and when, we have little to go on to suppose this. And saying that Mithra was crucified is downright absurd. Mithra's amazing feat was that he was born of a rock and slew a cosmic bull of some sort. There's little on their actual beliefs but what we know largely comes from a pictograph. In short, the only way anybody could say what you're saying is if they believed terrible scholarship and outright falsehoods. There's absolutely no historical records to indicate Mithra ever died much less died by crucifixion. With so many good arguments for the failures of Christianity or arguments you can draw out by pointing out the religion claims the universe is fundamentally hinged on the oxygen carrying cells of terrestrial animals as to propose that God needed blood to fix the universe, and only his own blood had enough magic to do it, so he gave himself a body and killed it. This is absurd as a genuine cosmology, but is exactly what superstitious people obsessed with blood magic would come up with if invented a religion, and lo and behold exactly such a people existed exactly where Christianity is first practiced.
Such arguments are terrible in a sea of great potential arguments to the point that it undercuts the entire case by even offering them (maybe somebody knows the most basic elements of the story of Horus or Mithra and can so easily scoff at them, that they will feel justified scoffing at all of them. If you give a bad argument along with good arguments, established cognitive biases are such that if they can see through the bad arguments they won't even address the good arguments.
The purpose of the Council of Nicaea was largely to establish the true Christian faith and condemn the heresies of Arianism. Deciding the true Christianity and outlawing all those others. It was the domination of Trinitarianism not the whole sale invention of Christianity.
While it is true that Eusebius argued for lying for Jesus and likely did. It is even the case that every copy of Josephus' work we have today that includes the Testimonium Flavium comes from a specific copy owned by Eusebius and that there's certainly a chance that he was the one who actually made that forgery. It is also the case that most all of the given external sources for a historical Jesus are significantly flawed. Most simply are late first and early second century documents which attest to the existence of Christians. And therein is a significant problem for your proposed thesis. Rather than evidence for it, you're saying that all of these documents can't even attest to the existence of Christians. Nor can there have been pretty much any of the early church fathers. Somehow all of the writings of Origen (AD 184/5–253/4), are actually fraudulent and don't really exist? Seriously? And that's just Origen, there's a dozen others Clement, Ignatius, Polycarp, Tertuillian, etc. Who defended the faith in the second and third centuries. They must all be fiction as well? Many of the Early church fathers argued for a Christianity much like the one that survived Nicaea.
Christianity existed long before Rome. The claims you are making is so absurd as to be downright shame worthy. With the bounties of proper claims why would anybody make the claims you're offering here? It's so bad and scattershot as to make the entire post worthless because you can't tell the mistakes from the points you got right, so much so that you'd be better off disregarding everything you said and doing all the research yourself. And that's not even considering the minor points like you suppose the library of Alexandria was burned to get rid of other gospels or evidence that Christianity didn't exist, or that the "The Serapeum housed the Great Library of Alexandria." Neither of which is true. They burnt the temple and the Serapeum burnt too. But, it wasn't the library of Alexandria, it was a separate annex across the town from the library that housed some of the books of the library. It was more to do with the civil unrest and general not caring about the books than it was an overt attempt at censorship. There were many other copies of the books the Library housed throughout Europe, they didn't get destroyed by fire or to suppress anything but rather they mostly rotted and nobody ever cared to rewrite them or save them during the dark ages.
Even the minor stuff you get horribly wrong. And you're using it to draw an absurd conclusion. It would be better to not read what you wrote, because it's filled with so many mistakes that it would likely make you wronger after you read the thing, than the small possibility that you rightfully correct somebody's mistaken impression.
Monday, December 19, 2011
So I ran across this article and basically it was horrible crap and I told em why. But, put a lot of work into it so I also posted it here.