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11184Re: Cathars & Basque

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  • Gerry
    Jul 4, 2005
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      --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, "George Harvey"
      <georgeatnsn@y...> wrote:
      > Thank you. Very well put. Maybe some classify them as Gnostic
      > because the Church called them heretics. It seems some people
      > confuse the two terms.
      > Everybody,
      > Does anybody here think that they were Gnostic?
      > George

      The Romantic side of me might be inclined to hold out that we are
      simply not privy to the actual perspective of the Cathar Parfaits,
      but without anything to substantiate it, this would simply be
      speculation (or wishful thinking).

      Even looking at the historical process as analogous with Gnostic
      myth, consider how those concepts might have degraded as they
      filtered through the Manichaeans, and the Bogomils, to the Cathars.
      This far from the source, they might have been little left but a
      shell of esoteric understanding, which by then, could have even been
      regarded through a more exoteric perspective . . . emanating from the
      Source to the point of no longer recognizing it.

      Indeed, George, that confusion you mentioned of equating "heretics"
      with "Gnostics" is something that I still observe. This is becoming
      quite the popular phenomenon of late. I've been waiting since
      February to see the release of Prada's new fragrance, inspired
      by "Thunder Perfect Mind" (have I missed it?). Well, inspiration may
      be one thing, but the fact that director Jordan Scott views the
      campaign as "a testament to women in all forms" does little to
      indicate that she appreciates the Gnostic value of the paradoxical
      text used in the project. Basically, it has become a marketing
      gimmick, and nothing more.

      You can also look to the lyrics of Tori Amos:

      There was a garden
      In the beginning
      Before the fall
      Before Genesis

      There was a tree there
      A tree of knowledge
      Sophia would insist
      You must eat of this

      Original sin?
      No, I don't think so
      Original sinsuality
      Original sin?
      No, it should be
      Original sinsuality
      Original sin?
      No, I don't think so
      Original sinsuality

      I'm calling you
      You are not alone
      I say
      You are not alone
      In your darkness
      You are not alone
      You are not alone

      In "Original Sinsuality," she succinctly lays out the bare bones of a
      Gnostic creation story, but her own interviews on the subject reveal
      that she was inspired by references in the works of Elaine Pagels,
      and that she basically liked the shock value of such texts. Well,
      there's shock value for the sake of bringing a person to a pneumatic
      awareness, and there's shock value for the sake of appealing to one's
      audience and selling more music.

      I suppose I'm cynical enough at this point to think that not only are
      people confusing "heresy" with "Gnosticism," but that many are also
      confusing "heresy" with "anti-church" and "anti-establishment"
      resentment. Maybe it's just me, but is seems like all
      these "freethinkers" are missing the boat rather than rocking it
      whenever they jump on the nearest bandwagon to point out what it is
      that they're AGAINST. Perhaps it takes too much effort to actually
      articulate what it is that they stand FOR.

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