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10881Chicken or Egg (and other layings and scratches)

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  • Tsharpmin7@aol.com
    Mar 24, 2005
      hi PMCV....
      you wrote:
      "Jesus says: 'The one who seeks should not cease seeking until he
      finds. And when he finds, he will be dismayed. And when he is
      dismayed, he will be astonished. And he will be king over the All.'"

      "This is obviously something that not only can be persued, but MUST
      be persued in order to achieve."
      this might be a chicken or the egg issue:  which came first?  can we
      entertain the idea that someone might have attained to what we might
      consider the sublimities of gnosis in lieu, or outside, of any Gnostic or
      Platonic or Mystery training or trappings?   other traditions claim that, while
      extremely rare, some individuals just have "it": "it" being gnosis, illumination,
      enlightenment, or choose a term (we needn't be too strict in our definitions
      here -- just trying to establish some points of reference).  they're simply
      born with "it" or may be suddenly hit with "it" through no intention or pursuit
      on their part -- "it" appears to have pursued them! 
      someone had to develop the "system" (i'm using "system" for lack of a more
      flexible, creative and perceptive substitute to describe what a true Gnostic
      might have employed to realize gnosis in others) we think of as Gnosticism. 
      and the individual(s) who developed the original may or may not have come
      out of another tradition.  i believe we can see elements of other traditions,
      obviously, that influenced Gnosticism, but we don't know this original
      "Gnostic" developer.  we can' say anything really meaningful about the
      originator other than he/she was familiar with one or more developmental
      traditions that were culturally prevalent at the time, but was not necessarily
      a product of any of those traditions.
      the Sufis (who do not refer to themselves as Sufis -- ring a bell?)  claim that
      a Perfected, or Completed, Man (or woman: Rabia for instance) who finds it
      necessary to transmit the way, will do so in such a fashion as to be in
      perfect tune with the times, places and cultures where the transmission is to
      take place (this is one reason why, here in the West, if you see somebody
      who purports to be a Sufi and is not indistinguishable from everyone else in
      manner of speech and appearance, etc., you can be pretty sure this is not a
      true Sufi).  the point being that those who truly have "it" can transmit "it"
      through any vehicle that is in harmony with the time, place and culture that's
      being targeted.  so if a Sufi found it necessary to pass on the transmission,
      and perceived that a particular group (though it could be a single individual),
      a chapter of Shriners in Hoboken, New Jersey for instance, contained 
      individuals with an immediate capacity to receive the transmission, the Sufi
      could do so within the parameters of Free Masonry. 
      who's to say that Christian Gnosticism couldn't just as easily have been
      Jewish or Solar or Mithraic Gnosticism, or that any of the preceding did
      not in fact exist under our historic noses?  it has been pointed out to me
      here some parallels between Gnosticism and Hermeticism, and that
      D8th&9th was an example of Hermetic teaching included in the Nag
      Hammadi find.  maybe this model produced individuals of comparable
      attainment as the Gnostic model?  container/content, map/territory,
      i've sidetracked myself here.  i'm actually in 99% agreement with the idea
      that gnosis "MUST be pursued."  but i also think there exist those rare
      exceptions.  unfortunately there are a lot of people who mistakenly imagine
      they are one of these exceptions, and i find that sad even if it is inevitable.
      wishful thinking, an obsession to be perceived as unique and/or
      particularly authoritative can lead to such illusions.  and if one thinks WORK
      is a dirty word, chances are one may as well put the idea of attaining "it" out
      of one's mind.  and i frankly find it scandalous that so many suggest
      otherwise, especially those who seemingly ought to know better.  but maybe
      it helps to weed out the true seekers from the kibitzers?  i don't know -- i'm
      not the gardener.
      by the way, i meant to share this with you in regards to an earlier series of
      posts between us (one of the "what's in a name" or "a rose by any other
      name" postings).  this is from the late Wendell Johnson's book, Your Most
      Enchanted Listener:
      "A rose with onion for its name
      Might never, never smell the same --
      And canny is the nose that knows
      An onion that is called a rose."
      (oddly enough i had "remembered" the poem as:
      A rose by any other name
      Could never, nerver be the same --
      And wise is the nose that knows
      An onion once called rose
      my lovely and mysterious wife said she didn't think that was right.  i looked
      it up on the web and she's right... go figure:  my old grey-mattered mule
      ain't what she used to be.  my god, how many other poems, quotes, dreams
      and events and faces and tastes and smells do i remember incorrectly?)
      anyhoo, i just thought you might dig Mr. Johnson's little ditty.
      your friend,
      Crispin Sainte III
      PS  it suddenly occurs to me, PMCV, was there any sort of "miracle"
      tradition within any of the Gnostic communities?  i don't recall having
      read of any, but i'm curious what their attitude might have been on the
      subject of supposed miracles. i've got a hunch about what their attitude
      may have been, but i can't find anything.  all my web searches comes up
      empty except for references to a "Gnostic Mass" and Jesus stories.
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