Re: Gnosticism and Christianity??
- Hello pmcvflag
On 01-Sep-03, you wrote:
> Hey Mike
>> IMO they are gnostic enough, they must be looked at. More so than
>> the Hermetic school, at least. Of course it is possible they began
>> as Christian, and moved away under persecution, as a defense, but
>> that is hardly probable. The most amazing thing about them is they
>> gained the status as "people of the book" under Islam, something
>> the local Manacheans and Hermetics never managed. If they aren't
>> gnostics, they are first cousins. :-)
> I can certainly buy that... first cousins. In fact, I'm not even
> arguing that they may not be full blown "Gnostic"... I would need to
> familiarize myself a little more with the movement before I take
> sides. In any event, they are certainly related enough to warrent
> observation here. Other movements I would include in the "first
> cousin" category would be the Manichaeans, and Marcion. The
> Cathars... hmmmm, maybe second cousins.
> I simply did wish to point out that thier inclusion in the grouping
> of "Gnostics" has been disputed (based on thier soteriology, which,
> according to the arguement, doesn't rest on Gnosis. Essentially it
> is the same arguement that has brought Manichaeans into question)
> There is also argument over whether or not the "Sabeans" are
> actually the Mandaeans, and thus were really recognized as "people
> of the book". I don't remember the specifics for that dispute
> though, so I see no reason to worry about that detail unless you do.
Well I think they gained the status under the sabian catagory, but the
practical effect is they gained toleration under Islam. Not to
relevant to this discussion though, I agree. Of course without such
toleration, they wouldn't still be here to discuss.
As to their soterology, to me it seems really gnostic if you
substitute Christ for the man of light, but I don't remember much
about any Sophia figure, it has been while since I sat down and read
much about them.
There is a lot in Jonas' book, but there are more direct sources. Do
a search on http://www.gnosis.org/ under Mandeans, and you will find
some more direct material alluded to at least. An anthropologist
went to Iraq in the early 1900's and lived with them, and reported on
A friend of mine who knew just enough about gnosticism to have heard
of them, actually met the head of the California Mandeans in a
restaurant here in Los Angeles. His daughter actually called
herself and the Mandeans gnostics, so I guess they must consider
themselves such. Of course my friend approached them from that
perspective, so it may not be so significant. They have a baptismal
site at a river in Florida, BTW. There are quite a few in this
country, with centers in New York, and Florida, as well as
California. My friend is a book seller, and met them at a convention
I believe. This was a couple of years ago.
Mike Leavitt ac998@...
- Thanks for the comeback, Cari. For myself, of the 3 quotes you sent, this
one I think speaks best.
"Let each of us, too, burrow for the root of evil that is within, and root
it up from his or her heart. It will be rooted up when it is recognized."
Once we have looked inside and recognized it we are equipped to recognize it
in others, and perhaps confront it. Whether or not that requires an
acquaintance w/ Godde, I remain unsure. It was for me but I can't speak for
all or in shoulds. roberta
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