Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Professor Robert Kraft of the University of Pennsylvania on Morton Smith and the Tselikas Project

I have been contacting some of my favorite scholars and asking them to make a donation for the Tselikas Project. I have noted when a number of them have decided to come on board. Here is an example of one of my most beloved academics expressing both interest and skepticism:

Interesting project, but ultimately will solve very little beyond adding another voice against the extremely unlikely -- even irresponsible -- claim that Morton Smith forged the text about "secret Mark." Finding out who penned that text will not in itself identify the ultimate source, unless one assumes what is also extremely unlikely, that the person did not simply copy something that already existed, but actually authored it. It would doubtless be interesting to know where the Greek penman was located, and when, but that would probably lead to the need for additional funding to search possible libraries to which he/she may have had access. Perhaps that would lead to another step back towards Clement and his time, but probably there are several stages in the transmission of such material, so no simple "solution" can be expected, a priori.

Kraft remains one of the brightest and most innovative scholars of any age.  His interest in the heretical traditions has been especially influential on me and many others.  It was great to make contact with one of my favorite people on the planet.

Email with comments or questions.

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