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Re: Gnostic Gospels Chapter 1

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  • lady_caritas
    ... taught ... Hi, Colleen, You are undoubtedly more acquainted with the Catholic tradition than I, but I ll take a stab at your question. Please feel free to
    Message 1 of 15 , Jun 30, 2002
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      --- In gnosticism2@y..., coolas25 <no_reply@y...> wrote:
      > Elaine Pagels says that "Even today the pope traces his--and the
      > primacy he claims over the rest--to Peter himself, 'first of the
      > apostles,' since he was 'first witness of the resurrection." Now,
      > I've gone to Catholic school for about 12 years. We were always
      > taught that Mary Magdaline was the first to see Jesus resurrected.
      > So I guess my question is. Does the pope really believe that Peter
      > was the "first witness of the resurrection"? If so, why is it
      taught
      > in Catholic school that Mary was the first to witness Jesus
      > resurrected?
      >
      > Thank you,
      >
      > Colleen

      Hi, Colleen,

      You are undoubtedly more acquainted with the Catholic tradition than
      I, but I'll take a stab at your question. Please feel free to
      correct any misconceptions I might have about Catholic apostolic
      succession. The literal view of the resurrection was useful for
      orthodox Christians in validating apostolic succession and authority
      as successors of the Apostle Peter. Catholics believe Peter was
      chosen as the new leader because he was the first apostle to see
      Jesus after he had risen.

      Even though Mary Magdalene might be named by some accounts to be the
      first witness to the resurrection, she would not have had the same
      status as Peter according to Catholics. My understanding is that she
      would be considered an apostle to the apostles by Catholics, but
      certainly not in the running for leadership, since delegated
      authority, according to orthodox tradition, was reserved for the
      eleven remaining apostles (after Judas' death). Catholics believe
      only the apostles could designate their successors, and legitimate
      heirs are seen to be the Pope, bishops, priests.

      Suffice to say that Mary Magdalene certainly was quite a prominent
      apostle in the Gnostic tradition, to the dismay of the other
      apostles, Peter in particular. :-) Gnostics, not sharing the
      orthodox belief in bodily resurrection, would attribute more meaning
      to those who receive Gnosis. "Resurrection of the spirit" is
      important in this lifetime.
      http://gnosis.org/naghamm/res.html

      Cari
    • ernststrohregenmantelrad
      In a footnote to this. Even if Peter is the rightful succesor by the Apostlic succession that doesn t mean Rome has the right to claim as such. In fact, the
      Message 2 of 15 , Jul 1, 2002
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        In a footnote to this. Even if Peter is the rightful succesor by the Apostlic
        succession that doesn't mean Rome has the right to claim as such.

        In fact, the first Patriarch of Antioch is Peter and Syriac Orthodox Church
        could trace its Patriarch all the way down to Peter. The fact that the first
        Christians are called as such in the city asserts that there were vital
        Christian community in Antioch. Peter being the founder of the church in
        Antioch is the more logical as being Patriach in Antioch then shaky legend
        that is Roman church

        --- In gnosticism2@y..., coolas25 <no_reply@y...> wrote:
        > Elaine Pagels says that "Even today the pope traces his--and the
        > primacy he claims over the rest--to Peter himself, 'first of the
        > apostles,' since he was 'first witness of the resurrection." Now,
        > I've gone to Catholic school for about 12 years. We were always
        > taught that Mary Magdaline was the first to see Jesus resurrected.
        > So I guess my question is. Does the pope really believe that Peter
        > was the "first witness of the resurrection"? If so, why is it taught
        > in Catholic school that Mary was the first to witness Jesus
        > resurrected?
        >
        > Thank you,
        >
        > Colleen
      • coolas25
        Where it is documented that the Church claims Peter to be the first witness, thus this being why he is successor? I guess I just want to see it for myself
        Message 3 of 15 , Jul 5, 2002
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          Where it is documented that the Church claims Peter to be the "first
          witness," thus this being why he is successor? I guess I just want
          to see it for myself since I've been told so many times that Mary
          Magdaline is the first witness througout my life. I appreciate all
          the information everyones been giving. Thank you :)

          Colleen


          --- In gnosticism2@y..., ernststrohregenmantelrad <no_reply@y...>
          wrote:
          > In a footnote to this. Even if Peter is the rightful succesor by
          the Apostlic
          > succession that doesn't mean Rome has the right to claim as such.
          >
          > In fact, the first Patriarch of Antioch is Peter and Syriac
          Orthodox Church
          > could trace its Patriarch all the way down to Peter. The fact that
          the first
          > Christians are called as such in the city asserts that there were
          vital
          > Christian community in Antioch. Peter being the founder of the
          church in
          > Antioch is the more logical as being Patriach in Antioch then shaky
          legend
          > that is Roman church
          >
          > --- In gnosticism2@y..., coolas25 <no_reply@y...> wrote:
          > > Elaine Pagels says that "Even today the pope traces his--and the
          > > primacy he claims over the rest--to Peter himself, 'first of the
          > > apostles,' since he was 'first witness of the resurrection."
          Now,
          > > I've gone to Catholic school for about 12 years. We were always
          > > taught that Mary Magdaline was the first to see Jesus
          resurrected.
          > > So I guess my question is. Does the pope really believe that
          Peter
          > > was the "first witness of the resurrection"? If so, why is it
          taught
          > > in Catholic school that Mary was the first to witness Jesus
          > > resurrected?
          > >
          > > Thank you,
          > >
          > > Colleen
        • lady_caritas
          ... the first ... Hi, Colleen, Click on http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11744a.htm Then scroll down to The Risen Lord confirms Peter s precedence : To him
          Message 4 of 15 , Jul 6, 2002
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            --- In gnosticism2@y..., coolas25 <no_reply@y...> wrote:
            > Where it is documented that the Church claims Peter to be
            the "first
            > witness," thus this being why he is successor? I guess I just want
            > to see it for myself since I've been told so many times that Mary
            > Magdaline is the first witness througout my life. I appreciate all
            > the information everyones been giving. Thank you :)
            >
            > Colleen


            Hi, Colleen,

            Click on
            http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11744a.htm

            Then scroll down to "The Risen Lord confirms Peter's precedence":

            "To him alone of the Apostles did Christ appear on the first day
            after the Resurrection (Luke, xxiv, 34; I Cor., xv, 5)."

            Note the scriptural references. But also note, as I mentioned
            before, that according to Catholics, Mary Magdalene was only
            considered to be an "apostle to the apostles." So, she wasn't in the
            running for leadership, even though no one will dispute that fact
            that she is cited elsewhere in the Bible as being the first one to
            witness the resurrection.

            Anyway, this seems to be the "official" Catholic view.

            Cari
          • coolas25
            Cari, Thank you so much for everything. Colleen ... want ... all ... the
            Message 5 of 15 , Jul 6, 2002
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              Cari,

              Thank you so much for everything.

              Colleen


              --- In gnosticism2@y..., lady_caritas <no_reply@y...> wrote:
              > --- In gnosticism2@y..., coolas25 <no_reply@y...> wrote:
              > > Where it is documented that the Church claims Peter to be
              > the "first
              > > witness," thus this being why he is successor? I guess I just
              want
              > > to see it for myself since I've been told so many times that Mary
              > > Magdaline is the first witness througout my life. I appreciate
              all
              > > the information everyones been giving. Thank you :)
              > >
              > > Colleen
              >
              >
              > Hi, Colleen,
              >
              > Click on
              > http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11744a.htm
              >
              > Then scroll down to "The Risen Lord confirms Peter's precedence":
              >
              > "To him alone of the Apostles did Christ appear on the first day
              > after the Resurrection (Luke, xxiv, 34; I Cor., xv, 5)."
              >
              > Note the scriptural references. But also note, as I mentioned
              > before, that according to Catholics, Mary Magdalene was only
              > considered to be an "apostle to the apostles." So, she wasn't in
              the
              > running for leadership, even though no one will dispute that fact
              > that she is cited elsewhere in the Bible as being the first one to
              > witness the resurrection.
              >
              > Anyway, this seems to be the "official" Catholic view.
              >
              > Cari
            • ernststrohregenmantelrad
              Let me put this thred together with the thred on Phillip K Dick. As you know everything in this world in some what related to one another or maybe human have a
              Message 6 of 15 , Jul 9, 2002
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                Let me put this thred together with the thred on Phillip K Dick. As you
                know everything in this world in some what related to one another or
                maybe human have a knack of drawing unrelated events as related....

                But "Rome never died" is precicely the answer to why Peter is the first to
                witness the risen Lord (hense the leader of Christianity) instead of female
                like Mary Magdalene although the Gospel of John (20:11-18) and Mark
                (9:1) DO STATE that it was Mary who first saw the Lord.

                The original question was from the first chapter of Pagel's book "Gnostic
                Gospels", the chapter entitled "The Controversy over Christ's
                Resurrection". It basically states the literal interpretation of the
                resurrection is more based upon the political factor. Pagel reason that the
                emerging church turned to hierchy by stating the resurrectionn as the
                literal event. By interpreting the resurrection as the literal event it
                legitamized the authority who witnessed the resurrection namely those of
                Apostles especially Peter. What is more telling is what Pagel wrote in the
                second chapter of the book entitled "One God, One Bishop". Noteably the
                legemecy of the Apostles were handed over to bishops. It clearly means
                that the authority is in the hand of bishops; furthermore, a Roman bishop
                as the time went by. A curious fact I would think. In the second chapter
                Pagel mentions the Letter of Clement of Rome to Corinth. I think this
                letter is very telling. It is considered to be one of the oldest document of
                Christiandom outside of Canonical writings. In fact some Traditions
                notebly coptic and Syriac included in their Canon. If you read the Clement
                of Rome or read the explanation from the Pagel's book it basically advise
                the Corinthian church to submit to the proper authority .ie bishops. The
                reason for this is that the church in Corinth was over taken by "young"
                "radicals" who rebelled against the authority. You know I wonder? What
                do you all think? I find it funny that an upstart church in Rome all of suden
                has authority over older one like Corinth. And what was these young
                rebelling against? Why Rome? Because Peter is there? or was there? It's
                only a legend. But Clement of Rome is said to be a Pope right after or
                second after Peter. Who is this Clement? What is his background? Why his
                basically telling every Christians to submit to the church authority? And
                by doing that he's claiming the legacy of Peter.

                This is my speculation. Roman authorty took over the new cult for the
                reason we shall see later when Constantine took over. Nice controling
                device. Who is Clement? full of speculation but there is claim that
                Clement was a commom name for a army official at the time. Nah
                couldn't be I'm crazy right? lol. Sure these offical saw Christian martyrs
                and said to themself NOT "wow look at that faith of Christians" but "wow,
                look at zelotness and great mass control" Yes, I think Christianity was
                highjacked at that point. Irenaeus was just an icing on the cake to wipe out
                the desenters and rationalize the political action as theological one. It
                maybe a specualtion but several things stand out. One is the number of
                converts amoung the Roman elite as Christianity spred. The original
                Christian message was basically geared toward less fortunate (women,
                slaves, etc) Why all of sudden elite joining? Second, this is fact not
                speculation, after the fall of Rome many Roman elites (high class and
                nobilty) joined the monastic order or became a church official.

                Well, to sum it up "Rome never died.... it hijacked one Hellenistic mystey
                religion and live to this day exerting influence." Of course I don't hold out
                for the "evil' Vatican theory but there are secret Vatican origanization
                like Opus Dei, Knights of Malta. It is like any organized institution like US
                government. Its right hand doesn't know what its left hand is doing.
              • morphodyte
                Hello Ernst; Rome actually never did die - and I mean this quite literally; Rome just changed the form of governance. If we look at the papacy and epicopate of
                Message 7 of 15 , Jul 10, 2002
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                  Hello Ernst;

                  Rome actually never did die - and I mean this quite literally;
                  Rome just changed the form of governance.

                  If we look at the papacy and epicopate of the Church hierarchy
                  we see that they were organized as a part of the Imperial
                  bureaucracy, just as was the military and the Imperium. In fact
                  the bureaucratic divide of Rome into East and West suggests a
                  decentralization of power in late antiquity to make the vast
                  Empire more manageable.

                  The bishops were an arm of the governement, something to
                  replace the senate with something more suited to the Imperial
                  command and which assumed the Imperial role of Pontifex
                  maximus, so as to relieve the Emperor of religious duty to
                  concentrate on secular and military matters.

                  These aspects of the Empire functioned so well that when the
                  Vandals sacked Rome, the religious arm of the Imperial
                  government was able to survive and establish itself by the time
                  of Charlemagne as a power functioning independently of the
                  Constantinople government and its diaconate.

                  This Roman Church, functioning as the last vestige of Roman
                  imperial rule sought to establish new Roman authorities through
                  Charlemagne and the Germanic kings of Vienna - with some
                  limited success, but the Imperial function was never able to
                  emerge from the feudal syatem imposed by the Goths and
                  franks.

                  Nevertheless, Rome really never did die, and was in fact still
                  powerful as a religious government until the time of the
                  Reformation when it lost control of most of Germany as well as
                  England. the next blow was the French Revolution and the loss
                  of political power in France.

                  You did mention Opus Dei and it is a well known secret that
                  Cardinal Walensa was placed in the Papcy through the efforts
                  and support of Opus Dei, and it is this Pope who was the moral
                  force through the Solidarity movement which brough down Soviet
                  Union.

                  The Church continues to expand its base in Latin America, the
                  Phillipines and in Africa - Opus Dei waiting in the wings.

                  But Church aside - the United States is a reformulation of the
                  Republican ideals of Rome; the legal and military systems are
                  based on Roman models - the legislature owes much of its
                  origins to Roman predecessors.

                  Right now American republicanism (the USA is not a true
                  democracy, contrary to popular belief) is threatened by the
                  increasing powers of the Executive and its support from
                  Christian extremists - much the same as in late antiquity.

                  However, the system does have protections built in having
                  installed a judiciary which acts independently - to a degree - of
                  the Executive, to wit we have had some rather conroversial
                  rulings like the recent one on the Plejaliejuntz.

                  States also still exert some degree of autonomy, albeit much of
                  that was dismantled by the despot Abraham Lincoln - yes I know
                  he is a favorite for abolishing slavery, but his war against the
                  South was disatrous and dismantled the federal rights of States.
                  I suppose he was a Julius Caesar, we are simply awaiting our
                  Constantine - perhaps he is already here.

                  Morphodyte

                  --- In gnosticism2@y..., ernststrohregenmantelrad
                  <no_reply@y...> wrote:
                  > Let me put this thred together with the thred on Phillip K Dick.
                  As you
                  > know everything in this world in some what related to one
                  another or
                  > maybe human have a knack of drawing unrelated events as
                  related....
                  >
                  > But "Rome never died" is precicely the answer to why Peter is
                  the first to
                  > witness the risen Lord (hense the leader of Christianity)
                  instead of female
                  > like Mary Magdalene although the Gospel of John (20:11-18)
                  and Mark
                  > (9:1) DO STATE that it was Mary who first saw the Lord.
                  >
                • Coraxo
                  Sorry, This post was not overtly gnostic; let it suffice that the antinomian character of Gnosticism was regrded as a threat to the Emperor and the Romish
                  Message 8 of 15 , Jul 10, 2002
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                    Re: [Gnosticism] Re: Gnostic Gospels Chapter 1 Sorry,

                    This post was not overtly gnostic; let it suffice that the antinomian character of Gnosticism was regrded as a threat to the Emperor and the Romish bishop, enough to have had them suppressed.

                    Fortunately our friends Irenaeus and Tertullian were kind enough to preserve som much gnostic teaching in their polemical writings that just as Rome is resurgent today, Gnosticism is likewise resurgent, something I think Philip K. Dick saw.

                    BTW, "Radi Free Albemuth" is like a parallel gospel to "Valis". Is valis anagramic for Salvi?

                    Corax


                    From: "morphodyte" <morphodyte@...>
                    Reply-To: gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com
                    Date: Wed, 10 Jul 2002 14:59:12 -0000
                    To: gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: [Gnosticism] Re: Gnostic Gospels Chapter 1


                    Hello Ernst;

                    Rome actually never did die - and I mean this quite literally;
                    Rome just changed the form of governance.

                    If we look at the papacy and epicopate of the Church hierarchy
                    we see that they were organized as a part of the Imperial
                    bureaucracy, just as was the military and the Imperium. In fact
                    the bureaucratic divide of Rome into East and West suggests a
                    decentralization of power in late antiquity to make the vast
                    Empire more manageable.

                    The bishops were an arm of the governement, something to
                    replace the senate with something more suited to the Imperial
                    command and which assumed the Imperial role of Pontifex
                    maximus, so as to relieve the Emperor of religious duty to
                    concentrate on secular and military matters.

                    These aspects of the Empire functioned so well that when the
                    Vandals sacked Rome, the religious arm of the Imperial
                    government was able to survive and establish itself by the time
                    of Charlemagne as a power functioning independently of the
                    Constantinople government and its diaconate.

                    This Roman Church, functioning as the last vestige of Roman
                    imperial rule sought to establish new Roman authorities through
                    Charlemagne and the Germanic kings of Vienna - with some
                    limited success, but the Imperial function was never able to
                    emerge from the feudal syatem imposed by the Goths and
                    franks.

                    Nevertheless, Rome really never did die, and was in fact still
                    powerful as a religious government until the time of the
                    Reformation when it lost control of most of Germany as well as
                    England. the next blow was the French Revolution and the loss
                    of political power in France.

                    You did mention Opus Dei and it is a well known secret that
                    Cardinal Walensa was placed in the Papcy through the efforts
                    and support of Opus Dei, and it is this Pope who was the moral
                    force through the Solidarity movement which brough down Soviet
                    Union.

                    The Church continues to expand its base in Latin America, the
                    Phillipines and in Africa - Opus Dei waiting in the wings.

                    But Church aside - the United States is a reformulation of the
                    Republican ideals of Rome; the legal and military systems are
                    based on Roman models - the legislature owes much of its
                    origins to Roman predecessors.

                    Right now American republicanism  (the USA is not a true
                    democracy, contrary to popular belief) is threatened by the
                    increasing powers of the Executive and its support from
                    Christian extremists - much the same as in late antiquity.

                    However, the system does have protections built in having
                    installed a judiciary which acts independently - to a degree - of
                    the Executive, to wit we have had some rather conroversial
                    rulings like the recent one on the Plejaliejuntz.

                    States also still exert some degree of autonomy, albeit much of
                    that was dismantled by the despot Abraham Lincoln - yes I know
                    he is a favorite for abolishing slavery, but his war against the
                    South was disatrous and dismantled the federal rights of States.
                    I suppose he was a Julius Caesar, we are simply awaiting our
                    Constantine - perhaps he is already here.

                    Morphodyte

                    --- In gnosticism2@y..., ernststrohregenmantelrad
                    <no_reply@y...> wrote:
                    > Let me put this thred together with the thred on Phillip K Dick.
                    As you
                    > know everything in this world in some what related to one
                    another or
                    > maybe human have a knack of drawing unrelated events as
                    related....
                    >
                    > But "Rome never died" is precicely the answer to why Peter is
                    the first to
                    > witness the risen Lord (hense the leader of Christianity)
                    instead of female
                    > like Mary Magdalene although the Gospel of John (20:11-18)
                    and Mark
                    > (9:1) DO STATE that it was Mary who first saw the Lord.
                    >


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                  • eris never died.
                    ... morph s post seemed pretty gnostic to me, since it dealt with oppressive powers on our Earth which try to stifle the freedom of people and keep them asleep
                    Message 9 of 15 , Jul 11, 2002
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                      On Wed, 10 Jul 2002, Coraxo wrote:

                      > Sorry,
                      >
                      > This post was not overtly gnostic; let it suffice that the antinomian
                      > character of Gnosticism was regrded as a threat to the Emperor and the
                      > Romish bishop, enough to have had them suppressed.
                      >
                      > Fortunately our friends Irenaeus and Tertullian were kind enough to preserve
                      > som much gnostic teaching in their polemical writings that just as Rome is
                      > resurgent today, Gnosticism is likewise resurgent, something I think Philip
                      > K. Dick saw.
                      >
                      > BTW, "Radi Free Albemuth" is like a parallel gospel to "Valis". Is valis
                      > anagramic for Salvi?
                      >

                      morph's post seemed pretty gnostic to me, since it dealt with oppressive
                      powers on our Earth which try to stifle the freedom of people and keep
                      them asleep and unconscious (maybe if he had thrown in the word Demiurge a
                      few times it would be properly gnostified? :)

                      the last few days i've been reading Philip K. Dick's "The Divine
                      Invasion" which is part two of the trilogy that started with "VALIS" and
                      ends with "The Transmigration of Timothy Archer". after spending the last
                      month reading through more or less stale and boring works like Hans Jonas'
                      "The Gnostic Religion" this book shows a more exciting, interesting, and
                      living form of gnostic worldview to me. without having read the standard
                      works on gnosticism, i might have missed a lot of themes in PKD, so it was
                      beneficial. the best part, so far, is how he updated many symbols, or
                      created his own, which are still connected to the symbols of classical
                      gnosticism. one example is how the "exiles" from the planet Earth live in
                      isolated domes on the surface of a dead planet called CY30, where other
                      humans do live, but they are so cut off and it is such a hassle to
                      interact with another. the themes of isolation and alienation are there,
                      but in sci-fi context instead of spirit-soul-body imagery. the Demiurge in
                      his story seems to be a combination of the Catholic-Islamic Church and the
                      Communist Party, rather than some Yahwehmonster. i'm not finished with the
                      book yet, so my comments are premature, but i do recommend this to anyone
                      who wants to see a more modern gnostic writing.

                      john.
                    • regeneratia
                      Cari, How are you? As always, I am amazed at your knowledge base. I have been brainstorming on gnosticism in real life. I have not been on the boards much. It
                      Message 10 of 15 , Jul 11, 2002
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                        Cari,

                        How are you?
                        As always, I am amazed at your knowledge base.
                        I have been brainstorming on gnosticism in real life. I have not
                        been on the boards much.
                        It is good to see you here. Keep up the good light.

                        I believe that the beloveddisciple.org will help in your discussion.

                        regeneratia


                        --- In gnosticism2@y..., lady_caritas <no_reply@y...> wrote:
                        > --- In gnosticism2@y..., coolas25 <no_reply@y...> wrote:
                        > > Where it is documented that the Church claims Peter to be
                        > the "first
                        > > witness," thus this being why he is successor? I guess I just
                        want
                        > > to see it for myself since I've been told so many times that
                        Mary
                        > > Magdaline is the first witness througout my life. I appreciate
                        all
                        > > the information everyones been giving. Thank you :)
                        > >
                        > > Colleen
                        >
                        >
                        > Hi, Colleen,
                        >
                        > Click on
                        > http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11744a.htm
                        >
                        > Then scroll down to "The Risen Lord confirms Peter's
                        precedence":
                        >
                        > "To him alone of the Apostles did Christ appear on the first day
                        > after the Resurrection (Luke, xxiv, 34; I Cor., xv, 5)."
                        >
                        > Note the scriptural references. But also note, as I mentioned
                        > before, that according to Catholics, Mary Magdalene was only
                        > considered to be an "apostle to the apostles." So, she wasn't
                        in the
                        > running for leadership, even though no one will dispute that
                        fact
                        > that she is cited elsewhere in the Bible as being the first one to
                        > witness the resurrection.
                        >
                        > Anyway, this seems to be the "official" Catholic view.
                        >
                        > Cari
                      • lady_caritas
                        ... regeneratia, I m just fine, thank you. What a delight to see you! And how are you? I know you re a busy mom (love the recent pic), but I hope you find
                        Message 11 of 15 , Jul 11, 2002
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                          --- In gnosticism2@y..., regeneratia <no_reply@y...> wrote:
                          > Cari,
                          >
                          > How are you?
                          > As always, I am amazed at your knowledge base.
                          > I have been brainstorming on gnosticism in real life. I have not
                          > been on the boards much.
                          > It is good to see you here. Keep up the good light.
                          >
                          > I believe that the beloveddisciple.org will help in your discussion.
                          >
                          > regeneratia
                          >

                          regeneratia, I'm just fine, thank you. What a delight to see you!
                          And how are you? I know you're a busy mom (love the recent pic), but
                          I hope you find time to post some more over here.

                          Also, thanks for the link. You reminded me of another site (where
                          that article is also located) that might interest Colleen regarding
                          Mary Magdalene ~
                          http://magdalene.org/

                          Cari
                        • ernststrohregenmantelrad
                          Dear Morphodyte. I really commend you on your knowledge on the subject. I really apreciate your input. a few comments on your post and perhaps you or others
                          Message 12 of 15 , Jul 12, 2002
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                            Dear Morphodyte. I really commend you on your knowledge on the
                            subject. I really apreciate your input.

                            a few comments on your post and perhaps you or others could comment
                            back on mine.


                            > If we look at the papacy and epicopate of the Church hierarchy
                            > we see that they were organized as a part of the Imperial
                            > bureaucracy, just as was the military and the Imperium. In fact
                            > the bureaucratic divide of Rome into East and West suggests a
                            > decentralization of power in late antiquity to make the vast
                            > Empire more manageable.
                            >

                            On the side note to this the line that separates the East and West
                            Empire is STILL there. If you notice the western side is Roman
                            Catholism and the the eastern side is Orthodox. This in turn affected
                            the form of writing as well as the West uses the Latin alpahbet and
                            the East (with the exception of Rumania and Albenia) uses Cyrillic
                            alphabet. One clear example of this is seen in the fomar Yugoslavia
                            where the line between the west and the east cuts right through the
                            middle. Serbs and Croats are basically same language meaning they are
                            basically same people. In fact the language is termed Serbo-Croatian.
                            What is the difference is that Serbs are Orthodox and uses Cyrillic
                            alphabet whereas Croats are Roman Catholic and uses Latin alphabet.
                            and now they hate each other. But that is well known. but there is
                            more on this line that divids the East and the West. As you know the
                            Roman Empire included Africa and that line is also visible. However,
                            it is not clearly distingishable unless you know something about
                            Arabic dialects. Arabic dialects could be divided into East and West
                            too and percise there that line falls in somewhere west of Eygypt. For
                            the dialects of Maghreb and that of Egypt and vastly different. Ok I
                            guess I ventured into off topic here.


                            > These aspects of the Empire functioned so well that when the
                            > Vandals sacked Rome, the religious arm of the Imperial
                            > government was able to survive and establish itself by the time
                            > of Charlemagne as a power functioning independently of the
                            > Constantinople government and its diaconate.
                            >
                            > This Roman Church, functioning as the last vestige of Roman
                            > imperial rule sought to establish new Roman authorities through
                            > Charlemagne and the Germanic kings of Vienna - with some
                            > limited success, but the Imperial function was never able to
                            > emerge from the feudal syatem imposed by the Goths and
                            > franks.
                            >

                            Funny, you brought in goths and vandals. aren't they adhered to
                            Arianism form of Christianity at first? Can we make some connection here?

                            > Nevertheless, Rome really never did die, and was in fact still
                            > powerful as a religious government until the time of the
                            > Reformation when it lost control of most of Germany as well as
                            > England. the next blow was the French Revolution and the loss
                            > of political power in France.
                            >


                            Those god damned revolutionaries!But in case of Germany I think thing
                            went peachy after the Bismarck's Kulturekampf. I think they made the
                            deal. As for England all is lost after the Jocabite Rebellion and they
                            still hate Cromwell. But then England is not a major power anymore so
                            who care's now?


                            > You did mention Opus Dei and it is a well known secret that
                            > Cardinal Walensa was placed in the Papcy through the efforts
                            > and support of Opus Dei, and it is this Pope who was the moral
                            > force through the Solidarity movement which brough down Soviet
                            > Union.
                            >

                            Ooooh now you are getting into to the meat of it. I would like to
                            mention them in relation to the Vatican bank scandal (money laudrying
                            with Italian and american mafias) and a bogus masonic lodge P-2 which
                            have great deal to do with the death of JP I (which became a sub-plot
                            for the movie "Godfather III") and shooting of the current Pope.

                            > The Church continues to expand its base in Latin America, the
                            > Phillipines and in Africa - Opus Dei waiting in the wings.

                            Yes, indeed but too but mother Theresa, the propagandaist for them
                            died. Who would they turn to now?
                            >

                            > But Church aside - the United States is a reformulation of the
                            > Republican ideals of Rome; the legal and military systems are
                            > based on Roman models - the legislature owes much of its
                            > origins to Roman predecessors.
                            >
                            And one more thing is the use of monetary system which is quiet liken
                            to that of Rome.

                            > Right now American republicanism (the USA is not a true
                            > democracy, contrary to popular belief) is threatened by the
                            > increasing powers of the Executive and its support from
                            > Christian extremists - much the same as in late antiquity.
                            >
                            It is disturbing that these people coupled with extreme zionists and
                            Islamists (Wahabism-Islamo-fascists) are getting control.


                            > However, the system does have protections built in having
                            > installed a judiciary which acts independently - to a degree - of
                            > the Executive,
                            >to wit we have had some rather conroversial
                            > rulings like the recent one on the Plejaliejuntz.
                            >
                            but thanks to the 9-11 Reichtag incidents the rights are slowly
                            striping away for the reason of National Security. So we must get
                            these terrorists, right? Like in rome we must protect from German
                            barbarians. but you know I think these barberians and roman officials
                            knew each other. hhhmmm I wonder bin Ladin and Bush .....

                            > States also still exert some degree of autonomy, albeit much of
                            > that was dismantled by the despot Abraham Lincoln - yes I know
                            > he is a favorite for abolishing slavery, but his war against the
                            > South was disatrous and dismantled the federal rights of States.
                            > I suppose he was a Julius Caesar, we are simply awaiting our
                            > Constantine - perhaps he is already here.
                            >

                            Hey, Lincoln didn't care for black slaves. His plan was to send them
                            all back to Africa. (Like Liberia which is what that nation was
                            created) And right it was the state rights that was lost in the
                            American Civil War. Too bad the issue that used in the state rights
                            was slavery which had moral consequeces. I think we could again insert
                            the state's rights this time by bringing up the medical marijana.


                            But the next Constantine well.... After Nero that is Shrub, I think it
                            could Hirary Rodem Clinton. So it could be she.
                          • ernststrohregenmantelrad
                            ... Demiurge a ... yeah, so in sum the more you know about these things. Everything you know is wrong like AIDS then you start to wonder. Who won the WWII.
                            Message 13 of 15 , Jul 12, 2002
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                              > morph's post seemed pretty gnostic to me, since it dealt with oppressive
                              > powers on our Earth which try to stifle the freedom of people and keep
                              > them asleep and unconscious (maybe if he had thrown in the word
                              Demiurge a
                              > few times it would be properly gnostified? :)
                              >


                              yeah, so in sum the more you know about these things. Everything you
                              know is wrong like AIDS then you start to wonder.

                              Who won the WWII. That's right Nazis

                              Those things won me over to the Gnostic view.
                            • morphodyte
                              ... the ... Thank you Ernst, I also found a great deal interesting in your response. ( ...) ... suggests a ... West ... affected ... and ... Cyrillic ... Yes
                              Message 14 of 15 , Jul 13, 2002
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                                --- In gnosticism2@y..., ernststrohregenmantelrad
                                <no_reply@y...> wrote:
                                > Dear Morphodyte. I really commend you on your knowledge on
                                the
                                > subject. I really apreciate your input.
                                >

                                Thank you Ernst, I also found a great deal interesting in your
                                response.
                                ( ...)

                                > > the bureaucratic divide of Rome into East and West
                                suggests a
                                > > decentralization of power in late antiquity to make the vast
                                > > Empire more manageable.
                                > >
                                >
                                > On the side note to this the line that separates the East and
                                West
                                > Empire is STILL there. If you notice the western side is Roman
                                > Catholism and the the eastern side is Orthodox. This in turn
                                affected
                                > the form of writing as well as the West uses the Latin alpahbet
                                and
                                > the East (with the exception of Rumania and Albenia) uses
                                Cyrillic
                                > alphabet.

                                Yes the ancient hatreds with the Serbs and Croats reflect the
                                divide and animus between the Greek and Roma episcopate
                                after the decision of Rome to centralize all authority at the
                                Vatican. Given the recent wars started in Balkans, it is plain to
                                see that the ancient Roman interests STILL play out in our day -

                                Ernst is correct in saying that Rome never died -

                                and Philip K. Dick also wrote to the same effect in Radio Free
                                Albemuth when he also drew the parallel to the US and Soviet
                                Union dividing up the world between East and West like Rome
                                and Constantinople.

                                > Roman Empire included Africa and that line is also visible.
                                However,
                                > it is not clearly distingishable unless you know something
                                about
                                > Arabic dialects. Arabic dialects could be divided into East and
                                West
                                > too and percise there that line falls in somewhere west of
                                Eygypt. For
                                > the dialects of Maghreb and that of Egypt and vastly different.
                                Ok I
                                > guess I ventured into off topic here.
                                >

                                Actually this is interesting and may also be reflected in the types
                                of historical development we see in Islamic thought; just to
                                speculate, we see the establishment of the Umayyad califat in
                                Cordova and the Abbasid Baghdad califat in Babylon, again an
                                East-West divide with the dicision falling somewhere along
                                Tunis, until the formation of the Fatimid Califat for a period of two
                                hundred years, and the foundation of Cairo.

                                Similarly, the Califat in the Maghrib fell to the descendants of
                                those same Goths, Vandals and Sueves that formerly drove out
                                Rome. Like late Rome, the Califat of Cordova collapsed
                                because of internal rivalries, fundamentalist religious
                                movements ( Almohads and Murabitun) and disunited armies.

                                The Fatimid califat, a resurgence of Ptolemaic Egypt, along with
                                a variant form of Islam - Fatimid Ismailism and its neoplatonic
                                and Alexandrian influences.

                                >
                                > > These aspects of the Empire functioned so well that when
                                the
                                > > Vandals sacked Rome, the religious arm of the Imperial
                                > > government was able to survive and establish itself by the
                                time
                                > > of Charlemagne as a power functioning independently of the
                                > > Constantinople government and its diaconate.

                                And when Constantinople fell to the Turks, the Sultans only had
                                to step into a bureaucracy that continued to function and serve
                                the new Emperors, the Sultans who managed an empire which
                                conformed more of less to old Byzantium.

                                > Funny, you brought in goths and vandals. aren't they adhered to
                                > Arianism form of Christianity at first? Can we make some
                                connection here?
                                >

                                I have often wondered if the collapse of the West was due to
                                some resentment or rebellion among the Visigothic
                                commanders of Spain who continued to practice their Arian
                                religion and resented the imposition of Trinity by Nicea.

                                Also, Priscillianus of Avila was the first bishop of record
                                executed for heresy. It is rumored that his remains are those in
                                the pilgrimage spot of Santiago Camposella, not St. James.

                                > > England. the next blow was the French Revolution and the
                                loss
                                > > of political power in France.

                                (>>>)
                                (>>>)
                                > Ooooh now you are getting into to the meat of it. I would like to
                                > mention them in relation to the Vatican bank scandal (money
                                laudrying
                                > with Italian and american mafias) and a bogus masonic lodge
                                P-2 which
                                > have great deal to do with the death of JP I (which became a
                                sub-plot
                                > for the movie "Godfather III") and shooting of the current Pope.
                                >

                                Yes, JP-I seems to have been 'put to sleep' by those interested
                                in installing someone more attuned to regaining temporal power
                                after John XXIII managed to dismantle so much with Vatican 2.

                                > > The Church continues to expand its base in Latin America,
                                the
                                > > Phillipines and in Africa - Opus Dei waiting in the wings.
                                >
                                > Yes, indeed but too but mother Theresa, the propagandaist for
                                them
                                > died. Who would they turn to now?
                                > >

                                Actually, their current Modus Operandi is to use 'liberation
                                theology' and community intervention in the form of health clinics,
                                pharmaceuticals and hospitals and schools- for example in
                                Guatemala where the Church has managed to play Government
                                against the indigenous Maya - offering the Maya safety if they
                                practice Catholic religion rather than the ancient Maya.
                                (>>>)
                                > And one more thing is the use of monetary system which is
                                quiet liken
                                > to that of Rome.
                                >

                                The coin of Caesar, I agree very much so.

                                > > Right now American republicanism (the USA is not a true
                                > > democracy, contrary to popular belief) is threatened by the
                                > > increasing powers of the Executive and its support from
                                > > Christian extremists - much the same as in late antiquity.
                                > >
                                > It is disturbing that these people coupled with extreme zionists
                                and
                                > Islamists (Wahabism-Islamo-fascists) are getting control.
                                >

                                Fundamentalism is a curious reaction to modernity, let us not
                                forget Americans are just as violently fundamentalist over two
                                main issues;

                                abortion

                                teaching evolution in schools.

                                These two issues alone have given what would otherwise be
                                regarded as backwater hicks a major control of American
                                politics.

                                recent comments by Southern baptist leadership calling
                                Muhammad a demonic pedophile bode ill for the couse of
                                American destiny; perhaps we will again see witch burnings if
                                these rabid bigots are not reigned in.

                                (>>>>)
                                > but thanks to the 9-11 Reichtag incidents the rights are slowly
                                > striping away for the reason of National Security. So we must
                                get
                                > these terrorists, right?

                                Like the Reichstag, the 9-11 has given the Brown Shirts in
                                American politics the rule of the day - anyone suspected of
                                'terrorism' can now be hauled off to tribunal without legal counsel
                                or due process - the "terrorists" have succeeded in ways most
                                Americans do not suspect; they have gotten us to destroy our
                                own freedoms. Now police, having been made into heroes by
                                sacrificing bodies at the Altar of 1 and 2 World Trade Center act
                                with impunity to beat up and harrass not "terrorists" but blacks,
                                hispanics, and people middle eastern descent - anyone with a
                                brown skin, because the now common perception is that they
                                are all heroes.

                                Homeland Security - Fatherland the resemblances are all to
                                scary.

                                >Like in rome we must protect from German
                                > barbarians. but you know I think these barberians and roman
                                officials
                                > knew each other. hhhmmm I wonder bin Ladin and Bush .....
                                >

                                yes, the Goth armies were in the employ of Rome, they grew the
                                wheat for Roman bread on the banks of Guadalquivir, citrus from
                                Valencia, wine from Seville, olive oil - hmmm. Now we get
                                petroleum oil from the very enemies we would protect our
                                empire from.
                                (>>>>)
                                > Hey, Lincoln didn't care for black slaves. His plan was to send
                                them
                                > all back to Africa. (Like Liberia which is what that nation was
                                > created) And right it was the state rights that was lost in the
                                > American Civil War.

                                Agreed, the emancipation was aimed only at the dismantling of
                                Southern agriculture and economy to favor polictical and
                                economic control by the industrialized North - get the black to
                                migrate North to work for low wage in the textile factories .

                                Too bad the issue that used in the state rights
                                > was slavery which had moral consequeces. I think we could
                                again insert
                                > the state's rights this time by bringing up the medical marijana.
                                >

                                The predecessor in the "War on Terror", the "War on Drugs" - say
                                goodbye to amendments 4, 5, 9, to protect us from the demon
                                weed and wage undeclared war on villagers in Mexico and the
                                Andes. The war on Drugs sets a bad precedent for the War on
                                Terror since they are both unspecified and undefined enemies;
                                no clear objectives or outcomes and terrorism like drug is a
                                matter of definition, someday refusing to say Pledge Allegiance
                                could get suspect of terrorist sympathy and jail - we live in
                                Orwellian times.

                                Terrorist, like Christian in the Colusseum - anyone suspected
                                can be fed to Lions, or in this case, the Police. Quickly our
                                country has forgotten the lessons of McCarthy era where anyone
                                could be suspect of Communism - and like a witch, only took the
                                suspicion to be accused and convicted.

                                The value of Gnosticism in our times cannot be understated
                                because it is of course a message of Freedom, not dogma or
                                doctrine nor Law nor State. The times we live in are an echo of
                                our ancestors, the Rome that never died.

                                Morph
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