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Re: Valentinian Exegesis of the Pauline Corpus

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  • icybrethovhecate
    Ptolemy The Valentinian Speculation , and Ptotlemys Letter to Flora are couple or excellent books. I would also read the Velentianin commentary on the
    Message 1 of 24 , May 3, 2006
      Ptolemy "The Valentinian Speculation", and Ptotlemys "Letter to
      Flora" are couple or excellent books. I would also read the
      Velentianin commentary on the gospel of John.
      http://www.gnosis.org/library/flora.htm,
      http://www.gnosis.org/library/ptl.htm,
      http://www.gnosis.org/library/valentinus/index.html

      Much of the Valentinian stuff is similar to mainstream/pauline
      Christianity. I hope you enjoy the above links. I couldn't find the
      document I really wanted "Ptolemy's Valentinian System", but is
      contained in the Other Bible(which is a good purchase anyway)
      http://cgi.ebay.com/The-Other-Bible-brand-
      new_W0QQitemZ4636853984QQcategoryZ378QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZView
      Item

      --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, --Michael <epsilon717@...> wrote:
      >
      > Could you give a few recommended titles and/or authors?
      >
      >
      > --Michael
      >
      >
      > --- icybrethovhecate <icybrethovhecate@...> wrote:
      >
      > > read Ptolemy's Valentinian System. It has a lot of
      > references to the writings of Paul. Actually, I'd reccomend
      > all Ptolemy's writings for a comparison of Biblical
      > Christianity and Gnosticism.
      > >
      >
      >
      > __________________________________________________
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      > Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
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      >
    • --Michael
      Thanks for the links. The ebay link didn t work (I did paste the entire URL). Never heard of the Other Bible. What might that be? --Michael ... document I
      Message 2 of 24 , May 3, 2006
        Thanks for the links.

        The ebay link didn't work (I did paste the entire URL).

        Never heard of the Other Bible. What might that be?


        --Michael


        --- icybrethovhecate <icybrethovhecate@...> wrote:

        > I hope you enjoy the above links. I couldn't find the
        document I really wanted "Ptolemy's Valentinian System",
        but is contained in the Other Bible(which is a good purchase
        anyway) http://cgi.ebay.com/The-Other-Bible-brand-
        new_W0QQitemZ4636853984QQcategoryZ378QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZView
        > Item


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      • pmcvflag
        Hey Michael The so called Other Bible is just a collection you can most likely find at any larger bookstore. As with the Gnostic Bible it should be seen in
        Message 3 of 24 , May 3, 2006
          Hey Michael

          The so called "Other Bible" is just a collection you can most likely
          find at any larger bookstore. As with the "Gnostic Bible" it should
          be seen in the context of the intent of the editors. You can find
          most of these texts online for free at http://www.gnosis.org/
          (Icybrethovhecate need not have suggested these texts to Mike, since
          it is Mike's church that has put these texts online and Mike is well
          versed in these sources).

          Many of these texts in both the "Other Bible" and the "Gnostic
          Bible" are texts you will also find in the Nag Hammadi. The writings
          of Ptolemy, along with the writings of Theodotus and Heracleon (also
          both important Valentinian sources) are found in heresiological
          sources.... again all found on the Gnosis.org site I mentioned above.

          All in all, if you want to explore Gnosticism then the Nag Hammadi
          Library is BY FAR the general collection to get. Of course, the
          recently translated "Gospel of Judas" (edt. Kasser Meyer, Wurst) is
          also part of the same genre and widely available. If you read the
          notes it is actually kind of a good intro to Gnosticism in general.

          PMCV

          --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, --Michael <epsilon717@...> wrote:
          >
          > Thanks for the links.
          >
          > The ebay link didn't work (I did paste the entire URL).
          >
          > Never heard of the Other Bible. What might that be?
          >
          >
          > --Michael
          >
          >
          > --- icybrethovhecate <icybrethovhecate@...> wrote:
          >
          > > I hope you enjoy the above links. I couldn't find the
          > document I really wanted "Ptolemy's Valentinian System",
          > but is contained in the Other Bible(which is a good purchase
          > anyway) http://cgi.ebay.com/The-Other-Bible-brand-
          >
          new_W0QQitemZ4636853984QQcategoryZ378QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZVie
          w
          > > Item
          >
          >
          > __________________________________________________
          > Do You Yahoo!?
          > Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
          > http://mail.yahoo.com
          >
        • William
          Is the Gospel of Judas available on-line? ... From: pmcvflag To: gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com Sent: Thursday, May 04, 2006 2:20 AM Subject: [Gnosticism2] Re:
          Message 4 of 24 , May 4, 2006
            Is the "Gospel of Judas" available on-line?
            ----- Original Message -----
            From: pmcvflag
            Sent: Thursday, May 04, 2006 2:20 AM
            Subject: [Gnosticism2] Re: Valentinian Exegesis of the Pauline Corpus

            Hey Michael

            The so called "Other Bible" is just a collection you can most likely
            find at any larger bookstore. As with the "Gnostic Bible" it should
            be seen in the context of the intent of the editors. You can find
            most of these texts online for free at http://www.gnosis.org/
            (Icybrethovhecate need not have suggested these texts to Mike, since
            it is Mike's church that has put these texts online and Mike is well
            versed in these sources).

            Many of these texts in both the "Other Bible" and the "Gnostic
            Bible" are texts you will also find in the Nag Hammadi. The writings
            of Ptolemy, along with the writings of Theodotus and Heracleon (also
            both important Valentinian sources) are found in heresiological
            sources.... again all found on the Gnosis.org site I mentioned above.

            All in all, if you want to explore Gnosticism then the Nag Hammadi
            Library is BY FAR the general collection to get. Of course, the
            recently translated "Gospel of Judas" (edt. Kasser Meyer, Wurst) is
            also part of the same genre and widely available. If you read the
            notes it is actually kind of a good intro to Gnosticism in general.

            PMCV

            --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, --Michael <epsilon717@...> wrote:
            >
            > Thanks for the links.
            >
            > The ebay link didn't work (I did paste the entire URL).
            >
            > Never heard of the Other Bible. What might that be?
            >
            >
            > --Michael
            >
            >
            > --- icybrethovhecate <icybrethovhecate@...> wrote:
            >
            > > I hope you enjoy the above links.  I couldn't find the
            > document I really wanted "Ptolemy's Valentinian System",
            > but is  contained in the Other Bible(which is a good purchase
            > anyway) http://cgi.ebay.com/The-Other-Bible-brand-
            >
            new_W0QQitemZ4636853984QQcategoryZ378QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZVie
            w
            > > Item
            >
            >
            > __________________________________________________
            > Do You Yahoo!?
            > Tired of spam?  Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
            > http://mail.yahoo.com
            >




          • --Michael
            ... most likely find at any larger bookstore. ... Sorry. Still confused. I haunt the local Borders. Never have seen anything like what you describe. Are you
            Message 5 of 24 , May 4, 2006
              --- pmcvflag <no_reply@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

              > Hey Michael
              >
              > The so called "Other Bible" is just a collection you can
              most likely find at any larger bookstore.
              >

              Sorry. Still confused. I haunt the local Borders. Never have
              seen anything like what you describe. Are you referring to
              collections such as Nag Hammadi, books thereon, or the
              so-called "Gnostic Bible?"

              If you're not referring to a specific book but, rather, to a
              set of texts, why the word "bible?" The connotation is
              something authoritative (there used to be a "Shooter's" and
              an "Angler's Bible" some years back).


              > As with the "Gnostic Bible" it should be seen in the
              context of the intent of the editors. You can find most of
              these texts online for free at http://www.gnosis.org/
              >

              That's been bookmarked.

              [snip]


              > All in all, if you want to explore Gnosticism then the Nag
              Hammadi Library is BY FAR the general collection to get. Of
              course, the recently translated "Gospel of Judas" (edt.
              Kasser Meyer, Wurst) is also part of the same genre and
              widely available. If you read the notes it is actually kind
              of a good intro to Gnosticism in general.
              >
              > PMCV

              Much appreciated.

              Notes and explanations are what I need. Reading the texts
              without background and context is rather fruitless for me.

              Seems the Gospel of Judas has gotten more than a fair share
              of attention; methinks its importance has been blown way out
              of proportion.

              Publicity is good for sales, though. The Vatican's
              condemnation of the Da Vinci Code surely will help sell even
              more copies. If I'd not already purchased the book, I would
              on that recommendation. <G>


              --Michael


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            • lady_caritas
              ... Hello, William. You can download both the English and Coptic versions from this webpage: http://www9.nationalgeographic.com/lostgospel/document.html Cari
              Message 6 of 24 , May 4, 2006
                --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, "William" <willpenrhiw@...> wrote:
                >
                > Is the "Gospel of Judas" available on-line?
                >


                Hello, William. You can download both the English and Coptic versions
                from this webpage:

                http://www9.nationalgeographic.com/lostgospel/document.html


                Cari
              • lady_caritas
                ... Hi, Michael. _The Other Bible_ is edited by Willis Barnstone, http://web.whittier.edu/barnstone/OTHERBIBLE.HTM who also was one of the editors of the more
                Message 7 of 24 , May 4, 2006
                  --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, --Michael <epsilon717@...> wrote:
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > --- pmcvflag <no_reply@yahoogroups.com> wrote:
                  >
                  > > Hey Michael
                  > >
                  > > The so called "Other Bible" is just a collection you can
                  > most likely find at any larger bookstore.
                  > >
                  >
                  > Sorry. Still confused. I haunt the local Borders. Never have
                  > seen anything like what you describe. Are you referring to
                  > collections such as Nag Hammadi, books thereon, or the
                  > so-called "Gnostic Bible?"
                  >
                  > If you're not referring to a specific book but, rather, to a
                  > set of texts, why the word "bible?" The connotation is
                  > something authoritative (there used to be a "Shooter's" and
                  > an "Angler's Bible" some years back).



                  Hi, Michael. _The Other Bible_ is edited by Willis Barnstone,
                  http://web.whittier.edu/barnstone/OTHERBIBLE.HTM

                  who also was one of the editors of the more recent _The Gnostic
                  Bible_.

                  Both books are available in bookstores and through online
                  booksellers. I wouldn't get hung up on the term "bible" regarding
                  these two modern collections of various religious texts, although I
                  agree that the connotation can be confusing. They are *not* intended
                  to be compilations of texts for specific religious use with an
                  absolute authoritarian function. In fact, I think the editors of
                  _The Gnostic Bible_ realized misunderstanding that could ensue from
                  use of the word "bible," and they do explain the history and their
                  use of the term in the introduction to the book. They specifically
                  say that "the sacred literature in this Bible constitutes no closed
                  canon."



                  >
                  > > All in all, if you want to explore Gnosticism then the Nag
                  > Hammadi Library is BY FAR the general collection to get. Of
                  > course, the recently translated "Gospel of Judas" (edt.
                  > Kasser Meyer, Wurst) is also part of the same genre and
                  > widely available. If you read the notes it is actually kind
                  > of a good intro to Gnosticism in general.
                  > >
                  > > PMCV
                  >
                  > Much appreciated.
                  >
                  > Notes and explanations are what I need. Reading the texts
                  > without background and context is rather fruitless for me.
                  >


                  PMCV's recommendation, _The Nag Hammadi Library_, edited by James M.
                  Robinson, does provide helpful introductions to works. In addition,
                  if you like annotations, you'll find plenty in Bentley Layton's _The
                  Gnostic Scriptures_, which contains selected scriptures.

                  Cari
                • lady_caritas
                  Apparently we ve been having some serious technical difficulties regarding ability to post. Last week I tried to resend a message Michael attempted to post.
                  Message 8 of 24 , May 8, 2006
                    Apparently we've been having some serious technical difficulties
                    regarding ability to post. Last week I tried to resend a message
                    Michael attempted to post. Both messages still haven't appeared. I
                    don't know how many other members have had difficulty posting.

                    I'm going to try once more to send Michael's reply.

                    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


                    --- lady_caritas <no_reply@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                    > Hi, Michael. _The Other Bible_ is edited by Willis
                    Barnstone, who also was one of the editors of the more recent
                    _The Gnostic Bible_.
                    >

                    Ah, got that on order.
                    Found the "Other Bible" on amazon. Thanks for the help.


                    > I wouldn't get hung up on the term "bible" regarding these
                    two modern collections of various religious texts, although I
                    agree that the connotation can be confusing.
                    >

                    Sometimes I'm too much of a stickler.


                    > They are *not* intended to be compilations of texts for
                    specific religious use with an absolute authoritarian
                    function. In fact, I think the editors of _The Gnostic
                    Bible_ realized misunderstanding that could ensue from use
                    of the word "bible," and they do explain the history and
                    their use of the term in the introduction to the book. They
                    specifically say that "the sacred literature in this Bible
                    constitutes no closed canon."
                    >

                    Good. But the word "Bible" is catchy. Good search term, too.

                    Fair enough.


                    > PMCV's recommendation, _The Nag Hammadi Library_, edited by
                    James M. Robinson, does provide helpful introductions to
                    works. In addition, if you like annotations, you'll find
                    plenty in Bentley Layton's _The Gnostic Scriptures_, which
                    contains selected scriptures.
                    >

                    Thanks for the other reference. I'll look it up on zam-azon.
                    <g>


                    --Michael
                  • lady_caritas
                    Well, hallelujah! We re up and running again. *lol* Cari ... I
                    Message 9 of 24 , May 8, 2006
                      Well, hallelujah! We're up and running again. *lol*

                      Cari

                      --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, lady_caritas <no_reply@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > Apparently we've been having some serious technical difficulties
                      > regarding ability to post. Last week I tried to resend a message
                      > Michael attempted to post. Both messages still haven't appeared.
                      I
                      > don't know how many other members have had difficulty posting.
                      >
                      > I'm going to try once more to send Michael's reply.
                      >
                      > ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                      >
                      >
                      > --- lady_caritas <no_reply@yahoogroups.com> wrote:
                      >
                      > > Hi, Michael. _The Other Bible_ is edited by Willis
                      > Barnstone, who also was one of the editors of the more recent
                      > _The Gnostic Bible_.
                      > >
                      >
                      > Ah, got that on order.
                      > Found the "Other Bible" on amazon. Thanks for the help.
                      >
                      >
                      > > I wouldn't get hung up on the term "bible" regarding these
                      > two modern collections of various religious texts, although I
                      > agree that the connotation can be confusing.
                      > >
                      >
                      > Sometimes I'm too much of a stickler.
                      >
                      >
                      > > They are *not* intended to be compilations of texts for
                      > specific religious use with an absolute authoritarian
                      > function. In fact, I think the editors of _The Gnostic
                      > Bible_ realized misunderstanding that could ensue from use
                      > of the word "bible," and they do explain the history and
                      > their use of the term in the introduction to the book. They
                      > specifically say that "the sacred literature in this Bible
                      > constitutes no closed canon."
                      > >
                      >
                      > Good. But the word "Bible" is catchy. Good search term, too.
                      >
                      > Fair enough.
                      >
                      >
                      > > PMCV's recommendation, _The Nag Hammadi Library_, edited by
                      > James M. Robinson, does provide helpful introductions to
                      > works. In addition, if you like annotations, you'll find
                      > plenty in Bentley Layton's _The Gnostic Scriptures_, which
                      > contains selected scriptures.
                      > >
                      >
                      > Thanks for the other reference. I'll look it up on zam-azon.
                      > <g>
                      >
                      >
                      > --Michael
                      >
                    • --Michael
                      I was wondering what might have happened. Thanks. Sometimes you get less than what you pay for. The workings of Ya-Hoo are even more mysterious than ancient
                      Message 10 of 24 , May 8, 2006
                        I was wondering what might have happened. Thanks.

                        Sometimes you get less than what you pay for. The workings of
                        Ya-Hoo are even more mysterious than ancient Gnostic texts.


                        --Michael


                        --- lady_caritas <no_reply@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                        > Apparently we've been having some serious technical
                        difficulties regarding ability to post. Last week I tried to
                        resend a message Michael attempted to post. Both messages
                        still haven't appeared. I don't know how many other members
                        have had difficulty posting.
                        >
                        > I'm going to try once more to send Michael's reply.
                        >


                        __________________________________________________
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                        Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
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                      • Michael Leavitt
                        ... You have to wonder about an organization that names itself after the demented humanoids of Johnathan Swift.
                        Message 11 of 24 , May 8, 2006
                          --Michael wrote:
                          > I was wondering what might have happened. Thanks.
                          >
                          > Sometimes you get less than what you pay for. The workings of
                          > Ya-Hoo are even more mysterious than ancient Gnostic texts.
                          >
                          You have to wonder about an organization that names itself after the
                          demented humanoids of Johnathan Swift.
                        • --Michael
                          Indeed. I still remember Festus (Ken Curtis) on Gunsmoke saying yay-hoos. I ve always pronounced it yah-hoo but have been know to refer to it as
                          Message 12 of 24 , May 8, 2006
                            Indeed.

                            I still remember Festus (Ken Curtis) on Gunsmoke saying
                            "yay-hoos." I've always pronounced it "yah-hoo" but have been
                            know to refer to it as "yah-hooey."

                            Still, Yahoo is head-and-shoulders above MSN Groups. I
                            despise excessive, not to mention garish and tasteless, use
                            of graphics.


                            --Michael


                            --- Michael Leavitt <ac998@...> wrote:

                            > --Michael wrote:
                            > > Sometimes you get less than what you pay for. The
                            workings of Ya-Hoo are even more mysterious than ancient
                            Gnostic texts.
                            > >

                            > You have to wonder about an organization that names itself
                            > after the demented humanoids of Johnathan Swift.


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                          • --Michael
                            I was wondering if there s a significant difference between _The Gnostic Bible_ and _The Other Bible_, both by Willis Barnstone. And also wondering about
                            Message 13 of 24 , May 8, 2006
                              I was wondering if there's a significant difference between
                              _The Gnostic Bible_ and _The Other Bible_, both by Willis
                              Barnstone.

                              And also wondering about Hoeller's _Gnosticism_. Good, bad,
                              ...?

                              For that matter, how about _Gnosis : The Nature and History
                              of Gnosticism_ by Kurt Rudolph?


                              --Michael




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                            • lady_caritas
                              ... Michael, _The Other Bible_ contains selections of literature (among them some Gnostic writings) from Judeo-Christian traditions that were not included in
                              Message 14 of 24 , May 9, 2006
                                --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, --Michael <epsilon717@...> wrote:
                                >
                                > I was wondering if there's a significant difference between
                                > _The Gnostic Bible_ and _The Other Bible_, both by Willis
                                > Barnstone.


                                Michael, _The Other Bible_ contains selections of literature (among
                                them some Gnostic writings) from Judeo-Christian traditions that were
                                not included in the orthodox Christian Bible canon.

                                _The Gnostic Bible_ is an anthology of texts the editors have deemed
                                as broadly "gnostic." Some of the literature included is not
                                regarded by various scholars to fit the category of historical
                                Gnosticism, but this literature is often from groups that at least
                                could be considered as related traditions.


                                > And also wondering about Hoeller's _Gnosticism_. Good, bad,
                                > ...?


                                I found Hoeller's book to be an enjoyable read. It's a good
                                introduction, but of course does include some subjective views of his.



                                > For that matter, how about _Gnosis : The Nature and History
                                > of Gnosticism_ by Kurt Rudolph?
                                >


                                Very good.


                                Cari
                              • Gerry
                                Hi, Michael. I might have managed to chime in earlier, but I m having some computer difficulties at the moment (on top of everything else), and my emergency
                                Message 15 of 24 , May 10, 2006


                                   

                                  Hi, Michael.

                                  I might have managed to chime in earlier, but I'm having some computer difficulties at the moment (on top of everything else), and my emergency laptop is little consolation.

                                   

                                  --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, --Michael <epsilon717@...> wrote:

                                  >
                                  > I was wondering if there's a significant difference between
                                  > _The Gnostic Bible_ and _The Other Bible_, both by Willis
                                  > Barnstone.

                                   

                                  One other thing to keep in mind, Michael, is that both The Other Bible and The Gnostic Bible offer abridged versions for some of the translated texts. This is fine for those who are simply looking for an introductory taste of works excluded from their own religious tradition, or for those who prefer a flowing and accessible rendering of some of these diverse and difficult works, but for carefully examining what the Gnostic authors actually sought to convey, one would be well advised to balance those anthologies with Robinson's affordable compilation, The Nag Hammadi Library. I stress "affordable" there because the next step up in my own recommended reading list would be another series edited by Robinson, The Coptic Gnostic Library (the forerunner of the NHL).

                                  Since I've broached the subject of "readability" already, it should be mentioned that this is another aspect of Robinson's collection that should be taken into consideration. Personally, I frequently found myself avoiding certain tractates in his book simply because of the numerous lacunae. It's definitely a challenge to read something all the way through when it sometimes seems as if every passage consists of random words interspersed with countless bracketed ellipses. My own copy of the NHL is the first edition, so I was somewhat dismayed just now when I looked up a critique of his revised edition and found that the "new & improved" version was even more conservative (i.e., less fluid). The same reviewer suggested that it would be nice to see yet another revision in which those lacunae are preserved (so that the reader can see where actual gaps and irregularities exist in the extant originals), but where such voids in the text were supplemented with footnotes offering scholarly insight into what they likely contained. Frankly, such a work already exists (inasmuch as it is possible to speculate on filling some of those holes), but it is the more expensive CGL that I referred to above. If anyone here happens to own both editions of the popularly targeted NHL, I would be interested in hearing additional insights regarding differences between the translations presented in these two.



                                  >

                                  > For that matter, how about _Gnosis : The Nature and History
                                  > of Gnosticism_ by Kurt Rudolph?
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > --Michael
                                  >

                                   

                                  As Cari said, this is a very good overview of the subject. As always, however, I wouldn't want anyone taking the opinions expressed therein as gospel, and neglecting the more recent research of other scholars in the field. Frankly, there are groups out there who do just that, not only with Rudolph's book, but even the older work of Hans Jonas. Basically, such people read these and seem to conclude that the measure of a Gnostic group is how similarly it resonates with Marcionism. When they get started on their rants, "Old Testament god bad; New Testament God good," it soon comes across as little more than a heavily dualistic, anti-Semitic brand of orthodoxy in which Jesus has still come to rescue us all from a life of sin. The mere concept of anything actually "transcendent" is usually lost on such individuals.  If you run across these people in your Internet travels, you will recognize them immediately.  ;-)

                                  Gerry

                                • Michael Leavitt
                                  ... -- M. Leavitt
                                  Message 16 of 24 , May 10, 2006
                                    Gerry wrote:
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > Hi, Michael.
                                    >
                                    > I might have managed to chime in earlier, but I'm having some
                                    > computer difficulties at the moment (on top of everything else), and my
                                    > emergency laptop is little consolation.
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, --Michael <epsilon717@...> wrote:
                                    >
                                    >> I was wondering if there's a significant difference between
                                    >> _The Gnostic Bible_ and _The Other Bible_, both by Willis
                                    >> Barnstone.
                                    >>
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > One other thing to keep in mind, Michael, is that both The Other Bible
                                    > and The Gnostic Bible offer abridged versions for some of the translated
                                    > texts. This is fine for those who are simply looking for an introductory
                                    > taste of works excluded from their own religious tradition, or for those
                                    > who prefer a flowing and accessible rendering of some of these diverse
                                    > and difficult works, but for carefully examining what the Gnostic
                                    > authors actually sought to convey, one would be well advised to balance
                                    > those anthologies with Robinson's affordable compilation, The Nag
                                    > Hammadi Library
                                    > <http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?z=y&isbn=00\
                                    > 60669357&itm=1> . I stress "affordable" there because the next step up
                                    > in my own recommended reading list would be another series edited by
                                    > Robinson, The Coptic Gnostic Library
                                    > <http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbninquiry.asp?ISBN=900411\
                                    > 7024&pdf=y&z=y> (the forerunner of the NHL).
                                    >
                                    > Since I've broached the subject of "readability" already, it should
                                    > be mentioned that this is another aspect of Robinson's collection
                                    > that should be taken into consideration. Personally, I frequently found
                                    > myself avoiding certain tractates in his book simply because of the
                                    > numerous lacunae. It's definitely a challenge to read something all
                                    > the way through when it sometimes seems as if every passage consists of
                                    > random words interspersed with countless bracketed ellipses. My own copy
                                    > of the NHL is the first edition, so I was somewhat dismayed just now
                                    > when I looked up a critique of his revised edition and found that the
                                    > "new & improved" version was even more conservative (i.e., less fluid).
                                    > The same reviewer suggested that it would be nice to see yet another
                                    > revision in which those lacunae are preserved (so that the reader can
                                    > see where actual gaps and irregularities exist in the extant originals),
                                    > but where such voids in the text were supplemented with footnotes
                                    > offering scholarly insight into what they likely contained. Frankly,
                                    > such a work already exists (inasmuch as it is possible to speculate on
                                    > filling some of those holes), but it is the more expensive CGL that I
                                    > referred to above. If anyone here happens to own both editions of the
                                    > popularly targeted NHL, I would be interested in hearing additional
                                    > insights regarding differences between the translations presented in
                                    > these two.
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >> For that matter, how about _Gnosis : The Nature and History
                                    >> of Gnosticism_ by Kurt Rudolph?
                                    >>
                                    >>
                                    >> --Michael
                                    >>
                                    >>
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > As Cari said, this is a very good overview of the subject. As always,
                                    > however, I wouldn't want anyone taking the opinions expressed
                                    > therein as gospel, and neglecting the more recent research of other
                                    > scholars in the field. Frankly, there are groups out there who do just
                                    > that, not only with Rudolph's book, but even the older work of Hans
                                    > Jonas. Basically, such people read these and seem to conclude that the
                                    > measure of a Gnostic group is how similarly it resonates with
                                    > Marcionism. When they get started on their rants, "Old Testament god
                                    > bad; New Testament God good," it soon comes across as little more than a
                                    > heavily dualistic, anti-Semitic brand of orthodoxy in which Jesus has
                                    > still come to rescue us all from a life of sin. The mere concept of
                                    > anything actually "transcendent" is usually lost on such individuals.
                                    > If you run across these people in your Internet travels, you will
                                    > recognize them immediately. ;-)
                                    >
                                    > Gerry
                                    >
                                    > Try the wife's, a Compaq Presario 1200, a P-1 peocessor and no USB, of course only one port on this Compaq P-IV 2 gig thing isn't USB. I don't really like that but it is fast, even with Windoze XP pro. Gotta try it with Linux!
                                    >
                                    --
                                    M. Leavitt
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