Clement of Alexandria
- An intersting link from a Coptic Church on Gnostics in Alexandia:
Correct me if I'm wrong, but although Clement of Alexandria seemed
to have a slightly different spin on Gnosis, I don't see him as
particularly hostile to it. He seems more intent on reconciling
Orthodoxy and Gnosticism rather than demouncing it as heresy, and
seems to take a more gradual and formal approach to Gnosis that
would not neccessarily be at odds with Valintinianism.
Has anyone found passages written by him that show anything like a
denunciation of the idea of a "demiurge", for example?
If anything, his more optimistic view of the physical world would
indicate that a demiurge is a more benign character. It would not
equate him with "the Father" per se.
- I tend to see it more as the latter. If you take this as Christ being the Logos, and John the B being the demiurge (or rather their representations), then when the Logos descended, gnosis was then available to each individual, rather than through the prophets which the demiurge sanctioned. The logos replaced all priests, and the spirit within us replaced the prophets. We are now qualified to be our own prophet, in other words. This is just my understanding from a combined variety of sources and insight.I also think he's getting onto James more for the reason that James is still searching superficially, instead of inwardly following the lead that Jesus gave. James wants more explanations, kind of like he's being lazy and instead of thinking his way there, he wants a 'gimme'.love from annie----- Original Message -----From: lady_caritasSent: Friday, September 24, 2004 10:21 AMSubject: [Gnosticism2] Re: John the Baptist--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "janahooks" <janahooks@y...>
> Thanks, Cari. So does the following passage simply mean that the
> time for prophecy is over, everything has come to pass? (I hope
> that's somewhere close to the meaning since Jesus basically calls
> James a ninny for not understanding. :) jana
> "Then I asked him, "Lord, how shall we be able to prophesy to those
> who request us to prophesy to them? For there are many who ask us,
> and look to us to hear an oracle from us."
> The Lord answered and said, "Do you not know that the head of
> prophecy was cut off with John?"
> But I said, "Lord, can it be possible to remove the head of
> The Lord said to me, "When you come to know what 'head' means, and
> that prophecy issues from the head, (then) understand the meaning
> of 'Its head was removed.' At first I spoke to you in parables, and
> you did not understand; now I speak to you openly, and you (still)
> not perceive. Yet, it was you who served me as a parable in
> and as that which is open in the (words) that are open."
That sounds good to me, jana.
Cutting off the head of prophecy is quite an explicit image when
considering John the Baptist, isn't it? Now that the Lord is here,
the prophecy of John's has been fulfilled. Why would there be a need
for continued prophecy?
Also, consider Logion 46 from _The Gospel of Thomas_:
Jesus said, "From Adam unto John the Baptist there has been none
among the offspring of women who has been more exalted than John the
Baptist, so that such a person's eyes might be broken. But I have
said that whomever among you (plur.) becomes a little one will become
acquainted with the kingdom, and will become more exalted than John."
I also see John as possibly a representation of an exalted
prophetic "head" honcho able to directly prophesize that someone
would be superseding him. John is a man nonetheless, whose psychic
limitations ("head" possibly even also representing a psychic
awareness) are supplanted by the appearance of the Christ. No need
to get stuck in neutral, going around in circles, with continued,
showy psychic prophecies at this point. All those (little ones)
acquainted with the kingdom are indeed more exalted than John.
Perhaps other members have additional ideas.