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Re: [Gnosticism] Re: Shedding New Light on the Buddha of Light

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  • Enheduanna
    Re: [Gnosticism] Re: Shedding New Light on the Buddha of Light Hi Corax It occurs to me you ve put your finger on another difference between the psychic and
    Message 1 of 74 , Jul 3, 2002
      Re: [Gnosticism] Re: Shedding New Light on the Buddha of Light
       Hi Corax

      It occurs to me you've put your finger on another difference between the psychic and pneumatic perspectives here.
      > However, the more disturbing and commonly held view is that gnosis is "personal", and without picking on any one > person I have to state that this "personal" view of gnosis is contrary tow what we know to be valid in the Valentinian > school where Man and Ekklesia are paired as a szyzygy.

      > That is to say that no man is an island unto himself and
      is a part of the greater Ekklesia and the Body of Christ.
      The difficulty seems to be that most people do not see themselves as part of the greater ekkleisa but rather, if they have spiritual or religious involvements at all, as subscribers to partisan religions and churches - in the main exoteric organisations such as the Roman church.
      The Valentinian perception is a shift which occurs following the experience of Gnosis, and is the perspective of the pneumatic.
      > So while gnosis may be an internal and private experience, it is my understanding that it can be communicated in
      > language through metaphor and analogy.  So much current dialog is contaminated with personalism that one
      > wonders why anybody bothers to write about their personal gnosis at all since of course it is so personal as to be of
      > no importance to the reader who is assumed to have a personal gnosis all their own.
      Particularly in the New Age movement,  the term 'gnosis' frequently seems to have been debased and is applied to any mystical or visionary experience, high or trip.  People are being misled into assuming experiences to have been Gnosis, when they are nothing of the kind. 
      > This is the danger of solipsism in discussing philosophy and gnosticism - since it is impossible to reflect on
      > someone else's private experience; one can neither validate nor refute statements which have no context and I dare > say, no meaning for anyone but the speaker.

      > And this wass the
      pitfall of the recent etic - emic debate where it was taken that one can form a 'personal' emic
      > understanding; this is not possible, because etic and emic refer to understandings of communities - not individuals.
      > The etic position is that of an 'outsider' and the emic is that of the 'insider' and their understandings of a behavior.
      > But the position is a view taken towards an event outside of one's self - one in which one is a cultural participant or
      > an observer from a different context - the understandings are based on shared not private knowledge.

      > But
      underneath all of this is the type of self-interest and personalization of gnosticism - something that one sees in > the way people also approach Buddhism, or Vedanta, or sufism in western cultures;
      Yes This is a danger which has long been recognised in many traditions - Teresa of Avila discouraged her nuns from indulging in such practices, and the well known advice in Buddhism runs: 'If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him.'
      > ...everyone seems to want to be unique and special and WITHOUT having to recognize any other authority than
      > themselves.
      Yes.  And IMO this arises from Nafs and attachments.  This seems to arise from a typically Psychic perspective, so that by definition such a person's experiences, however seemingly mystic and even beneficial to them, will not have been the Gnosis. So what results it the kind of Babel of 'individual' accounts and voices you have been describing.
      The trap for someone in this position is that they are referring to the egoic (probably heavily influenced by popular 'spiritual' literature) as their authority.  And unfortunately where such an individual has a charismatic personality, they are likely to go on to mislead others, perhaps even writing books or purporting to teach on the basis of their 'visions'.
      This contrasts, as I understand it, with the authority of the private experience of the pneumatic, since in this instance it is the Inner Christ which informs their understanding.
      But I think you are also pointing to a phenomenon which has become increasingly prevalent.  There seems gradually to have been a shift in Psychic consciousness and whereas in past centuries the psychic was generally content to accept the spiritual leadership of the exoteric religion of their country, the desire for 'individual' spiritualites (or the illusion of them), as evidenced in the New Age continues to grow.
      I have been wondering whether there are astrological factors involved, and that whereas the influence of Virgo during the Piscean age may have tended to have kept people as contented foot soldiers under some form of leadership (albeit institutions such as the papacy obtained the upper hand), the incoming influence of Leo might tend to promote the aspect of nafs and the insistence on individuality as expressed in the pursuit of media-driven idiosyncratic mystical experiences.
      > Not that authority is always a bad thing; as it is helpful to use common knowledge within the community as some
      > gauge of one's own insights. While the need for priests and popes may serve no purpose to the gnostic , the
      > Ekklesia is central to the idea of Gnostic community.
      This is interesting in the light of previous threads here.  As has emerged the psychic community among the Valentinians *was* in need of guidance, and in Valentinian theology was even seen to require the leadership of a just demiurge and a Law.  There is also the consideration that Paul and Valentinius (among others!) were actively engaged in teaching and ministry.
      Interestingly Paul's own 'teacher' seems to have been the Christ in form of the Gnosis iteslf.  This echoes the manner in which Jesus is largely depicted:  at age 12 and untutored he is able to dialogue on equal terms with the rabbis, and when he begins speaking in the synagogue it is "with authority" - again from the Holy Spirit or Gnosis.
      Thus while the Christed, or Pneumatics, have no need for priests, it appears that the Psychic followers of gnosticism looked to the pneumatics or parfaits (and their writings) for necessary guidance.
      > Personal gnosis - enthymesis and Sophia seeking to know the father through her own efforts, alone and personally > and ended up falling through lack of Logos - meaning, from the Pleroma - context.
      Yes it occured to me reading this that the fallen Achamoth and her counterpart Ialtaboath seem to reflect the nafs/egoic perspective of the psychic.  One in which exoteric laws replace the Gnosis and exoteric communities replace ekklesia.
      As such they seem almost a kind of mirror image of where the perfected (parfait/pneumatic) man completes the szyzygy with Ekklesia,  and the restored Sophia is wed to the Logos.
    • Coraxo
      Thanks Felis; Revelations 2:[17] He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the
      Message 74 of 74 , Jul 5, 2002
        Re: [Gnosticism] Re: Shedding New Light on the Buddha of Light Thanks Felis;

        Revelations 2:[17] He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.

        This troubling passage in the Apocalypse of John of Patmos makes sense in CON-TEXT with what is known of the Valentinian teaching of the name.

        Corax Bin Al-Ghorab Abu Gharib Al Maghribi

        From: "Enheduanna" <argot@...>

        Re: [Gnosticism] Re: Shedding New Light on the Buddha of Light

        Coraxo wrote:

        > How do we in fact know that Christ informs the understanding of someone?

        I just came across an interesting reflection on this with reference to the
        Valentinian concept of the Name:


        "As noted in Dawson (1992), Thomassen (1993), and Zyla (1996) the Name is
        closely identified by Valentinus with 'bold speaking' or 'free speaking'
        (parhesia). This notion of 'bold speech' as a characteristic of the presence
        of the Name seems to be derived from the New Testament. In the book of Acts,
        speaking boldly, healings and miracles are all said to be produced by the
        presence of the Name (Acts 4:29-30). According to Valentinus, the Father's
        "free act of speaking is the manifestation of the Son" (Valentinus Fragment
        2). He goes on to say that the Son visits the heart of the individual in
        order to purify it. Similarly, in his account of the creation of human
        beings, the presence of the Name within Adam is said to produce 'bold
        speech' which frightens the angels(Valentinus Fragment 5). Just as the
        Father expressed himself boldly in the Son, so the Son expresses himself in
        "bold speech" within the individual person. As Zyla (1996) states, "Through
        the sacrifice of Jesus, gnosis of the Father was gained and can be passed on
        through parrhesia (bold speech)". Gnosis of the Name produces "bold speech"
        in the individual.

        "Valentinus attributes inspired speech to the presence of the Name. The Name
        causes the individual to "utter sounds superior to what its modeling
        justified" (Valentinus Fragment 1). According to Marcus, inspired speech
        results from being joined to one's bridegroom angel (Irenaeus Against Heresy
        1:13:3). This further confirms the thesis that the angel is identical with
        the name. The experience of gnosis is the reception of one's angel/name
        which is a particular instance of the Son/Name. "

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