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5619Re: Making history making us

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  • lady_caritas
    Mar 2, 2002
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      �And Gnostics are dualists.�
      (hey_market)<br><br>I would agree that Gnostics could be seen as
      viewing existence in a dualistic manner, but would this
      be in a radically dualistic way or within a monistic
      framework? Then again, we have the esoteric forms that
      divide existence into three parts, the hyle, psychic,
      and pneumatic, . . not just the two, matter and
      spirit. One could see Manicheism as an example of
      dualism, but Valentinianism does not seem to have quite
      that radical view.<br><br>I would be interested in
      feedback regarding the following article in relation to
      others� personal views and also historical views of
      dualism within the general Gnostic
      setting.<br><br><a href=http://www.cyberus.ca/~brons/monism.htm target=new>http://www.cyberus.ca/~brons/monism.htm</a> <br><br>From the article ~<br>�Valentinianism is
      ussually classified as a form of Gnosticism. The term
      'Gnosticism' was coined in the nineteenth century to describe
      a variety of religious movements in the ancient
      world which have some common features.<br> <br>Some
      consider "radical dualism" to be a characteristic feature
      of all forms of Gnosticism (Jonas 1963). However,
      this generalization is simply incorrect. As Elaine
      Pagels points out in her book The Gnostic Gospels,
      "Valentinian gnosticism...differs essentially from dualism"
      (Pagels 1978). Describing Gnostic systems such as
      Valentinianism as "dualist" has also been subject to extensive
      criticism by Simon Petrement (1990). Indeed, it has been
      recognized for some time that "a standard element in the
      interpretation of Valentinianism and similar forms of Gnosticism
      is the recognition that they are fundamentally
      monistic" (Schoedel 1980, see also Petrement 1984, Dawson
      1992). This article represents an attempt to
      characterize Valentinian monism.� <br><br>�It is due to our
      ignorance of the true nature of reality that we believe
      that things can be separated into opposites. This is
      discussed in the Gospel of Philip: "Light and darkness,
      life and death, right and left are mutually dependent;
      it is impossible for them to separate. Accordingly
      the 'good' are not good, the 'bad' are not bad,
      'life' is not life, 'death' is not death." (Gospel of
      Philip 53:14-23). Categories that are considered as
      opposites are in fact closely related and one cannot be
      understood without the other. This is expressed in
      Valentinianism through the notion of the syzygy (pair). The term
      refers to the linking together of complementary
      qualities ("Aeons") of to form a state of wholeness
      (pleroma). This is the highest level of reality. The halves
      of a syzygy are often referred to as male and
      female. The male corresponds to form and the female
      corresponds to substance. There can be no concept of maleness
      without femaleness or no concept of darkness without
      light. Dualistic distinctions between "body" and "mind",
      "soul" and "matter" are meaningless. All things are
      ultimately one.<br><br>Just as the illusion arose as result
      of ignorance, it will be dissolved through knowledge
      (gnosis). Upon knowledge (gnosis) of God, the world of
      multiplicity vanishes.�<br><br>Cari