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Re: Some more Essene Research FYI

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  • pmcvflag
    Hey Jana ... how the Sethians actually practised vs. doctrine?
    Message 1 of 37 , Sep 8, 2006
      Hey Jana

      >>>Hey, pmcv. Could you explain the difference for me? Do you mean
      how the Sethians actually practised vs. doctrine?<<<


      I didn't mean practice vs doctrine, but instead the name of a
      particular sect vs a category that scholars have created that refers
      to a number of related sects. If I remember correctly, it was
      Schenke who first outlined these categories.

      Here is the way it works; In spite of the fact that almost none of
      our surviving "Gnostic" texts are attributable to a specific group
      (but there are exceptions to that), it has been noticed for some
      time that they tend to fit into two pretty obvious trends. These
      trends closely resemble two particular sects described by people
      like Irenaeus, so the names of those sects were picked to represent
      the categories of liturature even though many of the books may not
      have come from the actual sects.

      If you look in our "links" section you will find two brief outlines
      of what seperates these two categories, and if you set down with
      nearly any Gnostic text without even having heard from scholars
      which of the two forms it falls into I think you will find it starts
      to jump out at you. Apoc of John, Allogenes, Judas, they all fit
      this "Sethian" format. Philip, Tripartite Tractate, Gosp of Truth,
      they all fit the Valentinian format.

      Strictly speaking this was initially just intended to be textual
      groupings, but you will hear people also using the categories to
      group various sects together as well. Cainites, Sethians,
      Archontics, Barbelo-Gnostics, and many of the other groups mentioned
      by the heresiologists fit the "Sethian" format. Valentinians and
      various offshoots fit the "Valentinian" format.

      That is why it can sometimes be confusing if we are talking about
      the church of Sethians, or the category of Sethians.

    • lady_caritas
      ... it ... to ... Baptist ... Heh. Neither is the treatment of his mother, Elizabeth. The author writes, John was begotten by means of a womb worn with
      Message 37 of 37 , Sep 9, 2006
        --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, pmcvflag <no_reply@...> wrote:
        > I'm glad to hear that Layton didn't include TT *lol*. BTW, I just
        > thought I would also add an interesting note for the group (maybe
        > will come up in the Essene conversation as well) that in addition
        > the sects you mention are attacked the treatment of John the
        > is not very sympathetic either.

        Heh. Neither is the treatment of his mother, Elizabeth. The author
        writes, "John was begotten by means of a womb worn with age."


        > Less obvious, but possibly still significant....
        > "It is through water and fire that the whole place is purified -
        > visible by the visible, the hidden by the hidden. There are some
        > things hidden through those visible. There is water in water, there
        > is fire in chrism."
        > (side note.... considering the subject matter and the mention of
        > of the rituals mentioned in other valentinian texts, along with
        > scribal errors elsewhere in Philip, one could reasonably wonder if
        > the second use of the word "water" in this passage may not have
        > originally been "baptism")

        That's possible. Sure. Yet,... talking about "things hidden
        through those visible" preceding "water in water" compels me to draw
        an immediate association of hidden water through visible water. I
        don't know if that is any less meaningful than spelling it out.

        Since "chrism" is mentioned, it even might be expected to think of
        the water in terms of baptism. Chrism and water are mentioned as
        *both* being necessary for baptism elsewhere in GPh:

        "We are reborn by the holy spirit. And we are born by the anointed
        (Christ) through two things. We are anointed by the spirit. When we
        were born we were joined. No one can see himself in the water or in
        a mirror without light. Nor, again, can you see by the light without
        water or a mirror. For this reason it is necessary to baptize with
        two things – light and water. And light mean chrism."

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