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9375Re: Lowlights of DSS / NHL Seminar

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  • mheinich
    Apr 8, 2004
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      Gerry, I realize this is johnny come lately to this message but I am
      relativily new here. I get the feeling from your post that you did
      not like the book or Ehrman due to his lack of belief or sympathies
      in Gnostism and some of the inconsistencies that you mentioned in his
      book. If I summarized unjustly then I apologize.

      I found the book very informative and it made me take a closer look
      at the Gnostic Tradition. I had heard the term Gnostic before but
      was not familier with it. I am currently trying to reconcile
      questions that arise in me from reading the books in the NHL and the
      articles I see on gnosis.org. Specially since the books (and
      sometimes the articles :) ) are not consistent when you read
      one "book" after the other. That probably isn't the best way, but I
      am wandering off topic.

      I first heard about the books and Ehrman from the NPR interview. I
      was raised Lutheren but have not been active for awhile. I do enjoy
      reading and studing history. So the comments he had about the early
      christian church was fastinating to me. I went out and bought both
      of his "Lost" books. I enjoyed Lost Christianties and found it very
      informative from my point of reference which was not a Gnosticism
      point of reference. I found out things I never knew and it raised
      alot of questions about my beliefs and what they were based on.

      His writing was engaging and he was able to present a scholarly point
      of view quite clearly. Not all books on Religion or History are able
      to pull that trick off.

      As for the Forgery question that was brought up. At first this
      bothered me but after thinking about it, it made sense. He is not
      putting them down or insulting them. He is just stating that he
      and/or other scholars don't believe that the book was written by the
      person it is attributed to, that is by definition then a Forgery. It
      may have been written in their name for a number of good reasons and
      not necessarily criminal or fraudulent ones. Most of the books of
      the New Testament get the same charge leveled at them in the book
      except for some of the letters of Paul. I also found that there were
      transcribing errors over time along with intential changes to the
      books of the new testement to support some groups' or person's views
      very interesting as well.

      Anyway, I did not get as put off or bothered by his treatment of the
      various books but found it eye opening. He covers alot of ground
      without bogging down and boring the reader.

      Too add a little Gnostic flavor I will now butcher a Gnostic verse:
      I could use saying #1 (or two depending on the translation) of the
      Gospel of Thomas to trace the beginning of my journey. I am seeking
      knowledge, what I am finding about early christianity and about
      gnosticism is astonishing me. Now the verse say that I will rule
      over the All, but I will settle with I will have control(rule) over
      my beliefs and will try not to close myself off to the possibilities.


      --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, "Gerry" <gerryhsp@y...> wrote:
      > --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, "Rodney Cecil" <wvdog61@7...>
      > wrote:
      > >
      > >
      > > Hey folks,
      > >
      > > Last night on NPR's Fresh Air, Bart Ehrman (mentioned in
      > > the Time article above) discussed his book 'Lost
      > > Christianities'. I'll listen to the interview today but I
      > > read the section of his book that covered the Gnostics and
      > > his presentation was very positive. When he discussed the
      > > Gospel of Truth for instance, he described it as a writing
      > > that expressed nothing less than sheer joyful abandon.
      > >
      > > You can listen at the following link:
      > >
      > http://freshair.npr.org/day_fa.jhtml?
      display=day&todayDate=12/17/2003
      > >
      > > Go to the archive section for last night's broadcast.*
      > >
      > > Peace
      > >
      > > Rodney
      >
      > [*note: link revised to expedite location of audio file]
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > Hey Rodney.
      >
      > I dug this post up from the December archives. Your description of
      > Bart Ehrman's views on the Gospel of Truth had stuck with me,
      > certainly during the discussions here of some of his books and
      > interviews, and even during my trip to hear him speak last month.
      > Along with what I consider to be inconsistencies in his writing,
      and
      > descriptions of another book of his which I have not yet read, I'm
      > finally seeing why I've been so puzzled in trying to determine
      where
      > the professor actually stands with regards to Gnosticism.
      >
      > Concerning the Gospel of Truth, I should start by pointing out that
      > your comments above are sort of a paraphrase of Ehrman's paraphrase
      > of the original author of the text, and one should not assume
      > that "sheer joyful abandon" is any reflection of his personal
      > feelings toward this work in particular, or that such apparent
      > jubilation would accurately characterize his assessment of Gnostic
      <snip>
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