Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Owen Barfield Quote of the Day (11/13/12)

In Palestine, Jesus of Nazareth lived and taught and died. As the years passed by, an increasing number of sages and religious teachers began to agree among themselves that recently something had actually occurred which had before only been talked about or erroneously believed to have occurred. Certain of the Jews, for instance, admitted that their Messiah had come and gone. Egyptians and followers of the Egyptian cults were persuaded that a real Horus had been born of a virgin, and had risen again as an Osiris. Some of the more forward-looking among those who had been initiated into the Mysteries felt that what had so often been enacted dramatically within the sacred precincts had now taken place in a peculiar way on the great stage of the world, this time not for a few, but for all to see. A God had himself died in order to rise again to eternal life. Thus, those who had not been initiated—the poorer classes, most of the women, and the slaves—had a joyous feeling that at last the Mysteries had been revealed, that "many things which were hid had been made plain." And some students of Platonic philosophy could admit that this might be true, that henceforth those who could not rise to the contemplation of the eternal in Nature might yet win immortality by contemplating the life and death of Jesus. —Owen Barfield (History in English Words 115)

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