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11694Re: [Gnosticism2] Re: another newbie

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  • Tsharpmin7@aol.com
    Dec 5, 2005
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      In a message dated 12/3/2005 10:07:37 PM Central Standard Time, no_reply@yahoogroups.com writes:
      Hey Crispin

      >>>hi PMCV... i've been away for a while and had a wonderful time.<<<

      Glad you have been doing well.

      >>>>just wanted to poke my head into the room and say i think this is
      a marvelous reply you've written to Ben.  anyone can assume or imitate
      the trappings of Gnosticism, speak the lingo, etc., but i fear most
      would tuck tail and run if they believed they were required to excel
      at some other higher learning such as science or math.<<<

      I hope that did not come off as any kind of valuation... not for Ben
      or for any other group. There are many today who feel that critical
      learning (I will specifically avoid the term "Higher Learning") is
      somehow not spiritual. Whether or not that is true, I think that is
      not an accurate understanding of the intent of the historical
      Gnostics. Ben has NOT specifically stated his agreement with that
      sentiment, and I have already apologized for perhaps implying that he
      had (unintentionally). The only point I intend is that the anti-
      intellectual stance that SOME people feel is not a Gnostic belief.

      >>>like children playing house, its a very unrealistic understanding
      of what the actual requirements and necessities of maintaining a
      family and household.  so let the children play and have their
      entertainment.  those who mature, mature; those who don't, don't. 
      this is nothing new.<<<

      Well, I will leave my own stories of "Playing House" to the other
      group *lol*. I will leave the implications to the exploration of
      Civilitas and Libido, rather than Gnosticism. Still, I understand your
      point.... and I think it is one that is supported in the Gnostic texts.

      hi PMCV.... i am doing well, thank you.  i still have both of my legs,
      and just returned from a long vacation with my lovely wife: the first chance I've had to spend any significant time out of house or hospital since my accident.  i feel thoroughly rejuvenated and am actually looking forward to my next round in the torture chamber (rehab).
      as to your concerns, no, I had no specific individual (certainly not Ben) or group in mind unless you care to aggregate the following as a single group:  those who seek esoterica for entertainment, for solace, for emotional stimulation or in order to be perceived as unique or a rebel. 
      my post was in part a caveat for those who seem to imagine the ancient Gnostics received a free lunch, i.e., something for nothing.  i think we have all encountered individuals who imagine they can attain to some form of life altering gnosis on their own through pure intellect or passion yet disdain the idea of hard work and guidance, and this in turn they sometimes project backward in time to the Gnostics of old.  it appears to be a unique but anachronistic juxtaposition of mysticism and the American love affair with the self-made man and rugged individualism:  Jesus with spurs and a cowboy hat (of course there are those whose belief system assumes enlightenment as a sort of historical inevitability through reincarnation and, while i don't subscribe to that particular belief, i am respectful of it and mean no offense to those who hold it to be true).
      but mainly i just wanted to express my appreciation to you for reminding all of us that for many of the original Gnostics rigorous study was often a sort of prerequisite for admittance.  i personally believe they wanted the best and brightest and academic excellence helps to separate the wheat from the chaff.  i don't see this as snobbery so much as a recognition on the part of the Gnostics that not everybody who shows up at the door has the current capacity to receive what they offered.  this is simply being sober and realistic.  nothing elitist about it, despite the charges of some Christian apologists that that was precisely what they were.  surely nobody with a clue would call medical schools elitists for maintaining their entrance requirements.  if one thinks of the Gnostics as physicians of the pneuma i think we get a better appreciation of what it took to join their ranks.
      Your refreshed friend,
      Crispin Sainte III
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