Steven Monrad's Reviews > Reading Judas: The Gospel of Judas and the Shaping of Christianity

Reading Judas by Elaine Pagels
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's review
May 10, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: religion
Read in May, 2012

Gosh, what we learned in Sunday School was not the whole story after all.

That's not news, but this book is nicely focused on the principal events of Christ's life and reinterprets the main point in a way that does not wander off into other teachings or throw the baby out with the bathwater. Enhancement of the authors' obvious faith rather than a rejection.

Written by two professors, the book is not really dumbed down, just explanatory for the rest of us. They explain the big words.
The point is that Judas and Mary Magdalene 'got' the spiritualism of the message and the world while the more stolid disciples and their successors stayed hung up on the rules, sacrifice and persecution stuff,
the usual group dynamics of clueless rivalry and domination according to these ladies.

Like hearing Alan Watts explain the irrelevance of the Pope to spiritual life, without the humour. Nice to see Mary of Magdala presented as other than the drudge who complains,
marginalized by the big boys and resented as a muse of sorts.
Includes the detective work/logic leading to their conclusions and a complete translation by one of the authors.

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