Re: Old vs new
- Hey Jana
>>>I might not be understanding this question from your point ofview, pmcv.<<<
Well, then what would be the question from YOUR point of view? ;)
>>What I mean is, I know we have discussed here how people have verydifferent ideas of what gnosticism is, but I can't seem to
grasp what people would actually be trying to "modernize."<<<
I am asking as much as you are. I think no one here is confused as
to who we are talking about when we mention
traditional "Gnosticism", those various groups that fit into the
academic category. Specifically the Sethian and Valentinian
subcategories and no one else.
Is trying to understand their communication a valuable spiritual
venture or just a matter of pooring over moldy dead texts? Or are
the texts a mixed bag of valuable insights with things that simply
don't fit the modern era and therefore need to be "modernized"?
>>>Is there an idea or passage that you have noticed people singleout as outdated, or is it about what the definition of gnosis is in
the general sense?<<<
Well, you have been here long enough that you have seen people
sometimes suggest that the focus of this forum is invalid
because "those are just some old books". Or, people who like the
books but feel the systems could have no validity today. OR, some
who feel they know exactly what the core of the "Gnostic" system
was, so that they can pick it out in any system. Some people express
it as a fair point of debate (and some people get downright
beligerant about making the point), and I know there are a number of
people here who are on both sides of that fence (and maybe a few who
sit on top of it). However, I have yet to see a person really
explain either side in a cohesive kind of way. So I thought I would
ask which way you all think, and why?
>>>"Keeping up with the times" makes me think more of religions, ordenominations within a religion, and adjusting doctrines or rules.
Using Christianity for an example, priests can marry, females can be
preachers, and Baptists can dance without going straight to hell. I
don't really see ancient gnosticism as having much of a doctrine, or
set of practices/rituals attached to it that *could* be updated.
(Well, I know there are, but I guess it depends on how much of the
text is taken literally.) Yeah, again, I'm not sure if I understood
the question in the way you intended, so maybe I will stop here
before I go further with the hole I will surely dig for myself. :)<<<
When you say that you don't see much in the way of doctrin or ritual
that *could* be updated, do you mean because they are largely lost
due to repression? Or because you didn't know the ancient Gnostics
had doctrins and rituals at all?
The Gnostic communities were HIGHLY ritualistic, and had some very
specific doctrinal attributes that help us to identify them in the
first place (which is why we made up the name "Gnosticism" to talk
about them even though they didn't use the name themselves). Since I
know you are already aware of all that, I am guessing that perhaps
you are hinting that perhaps traditional Gnosticism is dead and
can't be modernized?
I'll wait until I understand what you mean a little more before I
add you to the running total with the other folk.