Even now, two thousand years later, I'm gripped with the suggestion that underneath all of the dogmatic structure, abstract theology, and socio-political manuevering, there lies within the heart of Catholicism a Hellenistic syncretic mystery religion struggling to get free.
Maybe that's why it fascinates me so.
There is some criticism laid against the christian tradition, criticism that is often vehmently denied:
The dead and resurrected god figure: Dionysus, Osiris, Orpheus, Persephone, Mithras (?), Enki.
The hidden king: Moses, Oedipus, Sargon.
The semi-divine birth: Gilgamesh, Perseus, Theseus, Herakles.
The divine mother: Ashterath, Innana, Mary, Isis.
Why not embrace being part of a Near Eastern tradition that goes back millenia, rather than trying to deny your roots?