Trying to get to sleep, but my mind is still ticking.
Thought I might make some notes.
If stories about Jesus are real, then he was either severely deluded or a compulsive liar ( or something truly bizarre happened ~2000 years ago the like of which has not been seen since ( I doubt it ) ). He was almost certainly receiving 'gratification' from Mary, and regardless of all of that almost all truth would have been lost to language, time, and agenda anyway.
On truth: It'd be really great if there was some cult that was interested in 'truth'. ( obsessed would be better ;) Particularly from the point of view of preservation. I don't mean 'truth' in the way that it's been bastardised by religion, but rather truth as in quantifiable fact, or standardised expression of state, etc. You really need to start with truth. ( if you want to gain an understanding of something ) Mathematicians are probably the closest we have to such a cult. They invented their own non-ambiguous language for the very purpose too.
On trust: I decided a long time ago that the only person you can trust is yourself. And I don't mean that in the sense that I don't “trust” others with my life, or my future, I really mean that I don't trust them to reveal the truth to me, even when they are not being actively deceptive. They can't 'know' the truth any better than I can. I guess the word is skeptical, in a non-negative sense.
I consider all facts to incorporate their context. So, if you tell me that x is y, then the fact isn't “x is y,” the fact is “at approximately a certain point in time I perceived you as explaining that what you perceived to be x as being engaged in an equality relationship with y” ( or something even more restrictive that I don't have the time to write out, since I don't want to go into perception, time, me, or you )
I haven't been able to isolate much truth on my own. I'm not asking you to help me though (actually, I just finished telling you that you can't ;)
My 'modus operandi', or my 'working truth', for the sake of interaction with my environment ( particularly other humans ), is just the net balance, or 'mean', or 'median' of all the contextual information I've received, with some notion of the standard deviation, relative sample sizes built in.
There were a few other things on my mind too, no doubt they'll spring back into my head the moment I lie down...
My point about the 'preservation of truth' was really the delta between "what was true back then" vs. "what is recorded as being true back then and how it is interpreted now". The latter is all we really have now, it's probably all we can ever have, but it'd be nice if we could strive to be closer to the former, for the sake of the future..