6489Re: [Gnosticism] Hi Flag
- Aug 15, 2002--- In gnosticism2@y..., "blackfire_al" <blackfire_al@y...> wrote:
>Hello, Blackfire. Since you bring up a feminine aspect in
> > 3. no (I'm too abstract to need an anthropomorphization of
> sophia's role)
> You may not believe in the sophia,
> but the sophia believes in you...
> with restictions and reservations, oh course.
> (I.e. the defining element which costitutes the "you")
> The "you" that is percieved by the sophia may not
> be the "you" that you take yourself for in your own perception of
> your fundemental being.
Gnosticism, you remind me that a friend of mine mentioned a new book
out, _Mary, Called Magdalene_, by Margaret George. Apparently,
although a novel, this fictionalized account does portray Mary
Magdalene in a more favorable light as an apostle instead of with the
woman of ill repute image she has endured in the orthodox Christian
Here's a quote from a review by Maureen Dowd in the July 9, 2002
issue of _The New York Times_:
Meet Mary Magdalene, good girl.
She was renowned as the sensual half of the madonna-whore
equation, ''the Jessica Rabbit of the Gospels, the gold-hearted town
tramp,'' as one admiring writer called her. There was the Virgin Mary
and the wanton Mary; the Mary in blue and the Mary in red.
The comely harlot who rubbed Jesus' feet with perfumed oil and tears
and dried them with her hair inspired great art with her jar of
ointment, haunting eyes and naked breasts. She inspired the spread of
refuges for prostitutes around the world called Magdalene houses. And
she inspired Barbara Hershey to become a notorious pioneer in lip-
plumping to play the sultry sinner Jesus saves from being stoned in
Martin Scorsese's ''Last Temptation of Christ.''
But for some time a cadre of female historians have been making the
case that Mary Magdalene was framed and defamed. They point out that
there is no scriptural evidence that she was a prostitute. They say
the Gnostic ''Gospel of Mary,'' supposedly written by Mary Magdalene
and discovered in Egypt half a century ago, portrays her as a rival
to Peter, as a female apostle who stayed faithful at the end, unlike
some of the skittish males.
The revisionists argue that, wittingly or unwittingly, the men who
run Christianity obliterated Mary Magdalene's role as an influential
apostle and reduced her to a metaphor for sexual guilt.
The main confusion was sown in the sixth century, when Pope Gregory
the Great conflated Mary of Magdala -- a friend of Jesus who was
present at the Crucifixion, who anointed his body for burial and who
was the first to see the risen Christ -- with Mary of Bethany (Martha
and Lazarus's sister) and an unnamed sinful woman in the Gospel of
Luke who bathed Jesus' feet.
The question is not merely academic, given the roiling state of the
Roman Catholic Church. The church refuses to allow women to be
ordained as priests because there were no female apostles. If Mary
Magdalene was a woman of hard virtue rather than easy virtue, then
the church loses its flimsy justification.
So the premise of Ms. George's novel is intriguing. Loaves-and-fishes
style, she takes a few mentions in the Gospels and spins them into a
625-page ''diary of a soul.''
- << Previous post in topic Next post in topic >>