How unique is the Star of Bethlehem? ..

Astronomically-related chat

Moderators: joe, Brian, Guy Fennimore

Post Reply
brian livesey
Posts: 5490
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2006 11:05 am
Location: Lancashire
Contact:

How unique is the Star of Bethlehem? ..

Post by brian livesey »

Those of us brought up in western culture are hardly strangers to the nativity story with its famous brilliant star in the West, signalling the birth of the Christian man-god. The appearance of a new star in the sky at the birth of an important personage actually predates Christianity by many centuries.
In Greco-Roman culture, a new star heralded the birth of a hero. Perseus and Theseus were just two of many heroes who were said to have been born under a new star. Incidently, virgin birth, as a consequence of the sexual union of a human female with a god, also predates Christianity.
The philosopher Plato was said to have been born through the union of his mother with Apollo; Alexander, through the union of his mother with Zeus ( some coins depicting Alexander show him wearing the ram's horns of Zeus-Ammon). The Julian family, of which Julius Caesar was a member, claimed descent from Venus.
To borrow a cliche, there's nothing new under the Sun.
brian
joe
Site Admin
Posts: 4383
Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 11:24 am
Location: Greenwich, London
Contact:

Re: How unique is the Star of Bethlehem? ..

Post by joe »

brian livesey wrote:How unique is the Star of Bethlehem? ..
I'm guessing not unique then? The point? This is not going to be a "debunking Christianity" thread.
200mm Newtonian, OMC140, ETX90, 15x70 Binoculars.
M54
Posts: 205
Joined: Sun Apr 27, 2008 2:59 pm
Location: Cambs
Contact:

Re: How unique is the Star of Bethlehem? ..

Post by M54 »

This has been covered via several programs and the one thing that keeps comes out is there is nothing to account for the report. The idea of a planetary conjunction was one of the first to be thrown out as the people at the time were familiar with these. They knew, we look it up on the internet. :(

Strong suspicision that it was added later as a bit of an embellishment, could have been added to answer the western yokels that asked "How did they know where to go?" :roll: :roll:
Post Reply