In Christ, I could see something of Horus and Mithra, for example (Zoroaster as well?)... in Mary, Isis (Astarte, Ishtar?).
Is this valid thinking?
I think some people are saying that the Christ/Mithra connection has been debunked... god, how I hate that word. However, I would like to know how that happened?
Also, I read somewhere that the origin of haloes came from AE depictions of Isis and Horus. Interesting. Remember we were wondering why some Renaissance painters used haloes and others didn't, and why Michelangelo and da Vinci didn't... though da Vinci was coerced into supplying them in his remake "Madonna of the Rocks." The Russians even went so far as to institutionalize haloes in all of their beautifully stylized icons and symbolic religious paintings. By the Middle Ages, belief was absolute and enforced with an iron hand, alternately a fist for coercion and a palm for accepting gifts, alms, tithes, and payment for indulgences.
Well, anyhow, I find it hard to believe that the Christ and Mary that fleshed out over the years just materialized out of the thin rarefied ether of heaven and fell on earth full blown with no other vertical or horizontal influences or histories to help us create them. Or were they indeed products of the spontaneous combustion of divine inspiration and miraculous events such as no one could invent or even come together to help create?