The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross A Study of the Nature

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The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross A Study of the Nature and Origins of Christianity within the Fertility Cults of the Ancient Near East I picked this up at a garage sale TG I didn't pay very much for it I later found out that this book was the downfall of Allegro and ruined his professional reputation The man was a brilliant ancient linguist but really went off the deep end with this one Many people believe he deliberately wrote this sensationalistic book to generate badly needed money I do know he was instrumental in bringing the errors or perhaps deceptions concerning the Dead Sea Scrolls interpretation to light and for that I am grateful to him But this book? Perhaps he only wrote it after having partaken of the mushroom himselfSee will give you leads to articles about what his colleagues thought of this bookNow let me be clear about one thing I am open to the concept of Summarian origins for many old testament stories But rather than deception I think perhaps the old testament writers simply believed it was the universal truth felt no need to credit any foreign sources But veiled references to secret ceremonies with knowledgefrom having partaken in a hallucinogenic substance? No This book is not an easy read in any sense of the phrase but it is a book that cannot be deniedOriginally published in May of 1970 it was attacked and buried out of print for nearly 40 yearsIt's author John M Allegro with Masters degrees in Ancient Languages Hebrew and Ancient Studies he was THE MAN asked to translate the Dead Sea ScrollsYet this book ended his careerThis book was the result of 15 years of research and study and yet critics dismissed it without even justifying their dismissalNo critic was as ualified as Allegro so all they could say is I'm not ualified to comment on the philology but those who are disagree with AllegroIn the end you have to read this book for yourself and form your own opinionIf you take the time it will blow your mind st A Study of the Nature and Origins of Christianity within the Fertility Cults of the Ancient Near EastProfessor Allegro Univ of Manchester has hitherto been known for his several excellent books on the Dead Sea Scrolls In an unusual reversal he has now produced a book that will make The Passover Plot seem the last refuge of theological ultra conservatism The thesis of the book is simple enough Jesus did not exist the Gospels were are a hoax Christianity is the atavistic vestige of an ancient fertility cult in which the object of worship was a peculiarly phallic mushroom Amanita muscaria capable of producing psychedelic reactions As farfetched as all this may seem it cannot be denied that he has brought to this work the same care scholarly detachment that have characterized his earlier conventional works; he has made not one concession to the sensational nature of his thesis The book is in fact a demanding one which presupposes in the reader at least a working knowledge of the ancient Semitic tongues of the sciences considered auxiliary to biblical studies Only the most determined non professional iconoclast will be willing to wade through his unrelenting jargon None of which of course will affect the demand for what is probably to become a very controversial work Kirkus edited When taking my first Hebrew Scriptures course our professor Grinnell College Chaplain Dennis Haas began a lecture with a display of this book saying how he had been shocked by its thesis that the roots of Judaism and Christianity were in a psychedelic fertility cult John Allegro its author he noted was a very well respected scholar one of the first involved in the study of the umran scrolls That such an expert could make such claims was uite upsettingYears later having gotten two degrees in religion and having read some of Allegro's other work I returned to this book hoping that I now knew enough to evaluate itI did not To critically appropriate Allegro's arguments one must be master of a whole host of ancient languages beginning with Sumerian the oldest written language known Although I'd picked up some Greek I'd not even begun to study Hebrew not to mention the other older languagesWhat I could appreciate however was Allegro's defense of the notion that much of what appears to be obscure and outrageous ancient religious literature is in fact experientially based and relevant to the concerns of real life In other words the use of psychotropic plants could certainly result in strong beliefs about other worlds or dimensions even of other sentiences and fertility is certainly of major concern to all agricultural communitiesWhile this book will be beyond most readers as it was for me most of Allegro's other works are uite accessible One day people will look back on this book and realize that it was the beginning of the revelation of the true history of RELIGION and Christianity one day Astoundingly absurd The uest to find references to the amanita muscaria in Sumerian hidden in the Greek text of the New Testament must have originated in a little personal testing of the mushroom In this book the author goes back to the roots of civilization in Sumeria to trace the use of psychedelic mushrooms as tools for divine revelation and breaks down the original language of the Bible to show among other things the story of Jesus to be a thinly veiled word play filled chronicle of merits of the sacred mushroomIt deals heavily with ancient languages religions and drugs so if you're interested in any combination of those things I totally recommend this book Obviously this book ruffled a lot of feathers when it arrived on the scene so there's books written to debunk what's brought up so there seems to be a whole lot to explore regarding this subjectAlso WHY THE FUCK ISN'T THIS BOOK IN PRINT? Do people ever bootleg books like they do records? I could print a new edition of this book market it to head shops etc and make a fortune 'cause I don't think many people especially young folk interested in mind expanding substances are aware of Allego's suggestions This book starts with a hefty dose of genitally themed etimology before going into cults and mushtoomsIs it interesting? YesDo you learn multiple ways to say penis in various ancient languages? YesBut it also is hard to follow and needlessly long Skip about 100 pages after the first mention of celestial semen it'll make it a lot easier Wow John Marco Allegro was the only non Catholic member to help translate The Dead Sea Scrolls and when he found the Sumerian glyphs that represented mushrooms and peered deeper into the text he underwent an existential reforming radically changing and casting off his Protestant beliefs Yet as I read this amazing scholar's main work I couldn't help but think that he was pressing his new found dogma too hard and that it would fall upon deaf ears While the book has inspired many to look deeper into the amanita muscaria mushroom I believe it is doubtful that any Christian deeply rooted in their beliefs could look at this book as anything than the ravings of a demon possessed mad man Were the stories in the old testament truly hidden messages to initiated shamans? Allegro points out that early Priests did not want to give up the secret ingredients to their sacramental potions that could contact the spirit world so they hid them in stories that the main public could appreciate while novice Priests could understand a deeper meaning To them who have ears let them hear spoke Christ As scrolls are eaten in a book of Eziekial and a coin is found in the mouth of a fish Allegro asserts that all these were obviously pointing to the Amanita Muscaria not to mention the mushroom shaped penis However the book is a fascinating read to anyone who is open to new ideas however absurd they may be It is important to remember that Allegro was the foremost Sumerian scholar and that he was able to see the scrolls first hand Heavy going and really this man is a scholar The fact is it ended his career because people prefer a simple lie to a complicated truthI thought the book was astounding