To: Confederate Keyester
The Esenes were an oddball, out of the mainstream "cult" back in the day. Their whole brand of Judaism has, to my knowledge, no parallel in modern practice. As noted in the article, the premise that John the Baptist was an Esene is not difficult to imagine given the similarities between what is said in the Gospels about John versus what is known about Esene practice. That, of course, is pure speculation. But you are correct, people could apply the same speculation to Jesus. In fact, some have. Not that the skeleton is his, but rather that he was an Esene himself. Of course, these people tend to also be implying that Jesus' divinity is just hype that came out of "secret code" the Esenes used in their writings. Barring proof to the contrary I'll choose to retain my faith but you can rest assured, some have and will cast theirs aside.
Were these folks at all related to or involved with Mithraic cults of the era? There is a small Mithraic religious group who at Penn State, but it is a fairly closed community. You don't just join. It's by invitation only.
For more on Mithraism, visit www.mithraism.org.
I'm with you. If we are wrong, then I reckon we will just be asleep for infinity after death. But if we are right . . . . . WOW!
Keep the faith!
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