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Re: [Gnosticism2] Re: elements

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  • Terje Bergersen
    ... I just realised that this speaks to a more archaic and archetypical situation: The Apocryphon of John has this: For from the light, which is the Christ,
    Message 1 of 6 , Jan 23, 2004
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      David wrote:

      > Hi Gavin. The Gnostic teacher Valentinus only had 3 levels: hylic,
      > psychic (or ecclesiastic), and pneumatic (or spiritual). And I've
      > never heard of any Gnostic levels other than those three.

      I just realised that this speaks to a more archaic and archetypical
      situation:

      The Apocryphon of John has this:

      "For from the light, which is the Christ, and the indestructibility,
      through the gift of the Spirit the four lights (appeared) from the divine
      Autogenes. He expected that they might attend him. And the three (are)
      will, thought, and life. And the four powers (are) understanding, grace,
      perception, and prudence. And grace belongs to the light-aeon Armozel,
      which is the first angel. And there are three other aeons with this aeon:
      grace, truth, and form. And the second light (is) Oriel, who has been
      placed over the second aeon. And there are three other aeons with him:
      conception, perception, and memory. And the third light is Daveithai, who
      has been placed over the third aeon. And there are three other aeons with
      him: understanding, love, and idea. And the fourth aeon was placed over
      the fourth light Eleleth. And there are three other aeons with him:
      perfection, peace, and wisdom. These are the four lights which attend the
      divine Autogenes, (and) these are the twelve aeons which attend the son of
      the mighty one, the Autogenes, the Christ, through the will and the gift
      of the invisible Spirit. And the twelve aeons belong to the son of the
      Autogenes. And all things were established by the will of the holy Spirit
      through the Autogenes.
      "And from the foreknowledge of the perfect mind, through the revelation of
      the will of the invisible Spirit and the will of the Autogenes, <the>
      perfect Man (appeared), the first revelation, and the truth. It is he whom
      the virginal Spirit called Pigera-Adamas, and he placed him over the first
      aeon with the mighty one, the Autogenes, the Christ, by the first light
      Armozel; and with him are his powers. And the invisible one gave him a
      spiritual, invincible power. And he spoke and glorified and praised the
      invisible Spirit, saying, 'It is for thy sake that everything has come
      into being and everything will return to thee. I shall praise and glorify
      thee and the Autogenes and the aeons, the three: the Father, the Mother,
      and the Son, the perfect power.'
      "And he placed his son Seth over the second aeon in the presence of the
      second light Oriel. And in the third aeon the seed of Seth was placed over
      the third light Daveithai. And the souls of the saints were placed
      (there). And in the fourth aeon the souls were placed of those who do not
      know the Pleroma and who did not repent at once, but who persisted for a
      while and repented afterwards; they are by the fourth light Eleleth. These
      are creatures which glorify the invisible Spirit."


      1: Pigera-Adamas is placed over the first aeon - by the first light
      Armozel (corresponding to _Understanding_)
      2: Seth, Man son of the Man (Adamas) - over the second aeon - by the
      second light Oriel/Oroiael (corresponding to _Grace_)
      3:The Seed of Seth - over the third aeon - by the third light Daveithai
      (corresponding to _Perception_)
      4:The souls who do/did not know the Pleroma and did not repent at once,
      but who persisted for a while and repented afterwards -
      over the fourth aeon - by the fourth light Eleleth (corresponding to
      _prudence_).


      "All these species glorified in the Invisible Spirit."

      This is a ladder of "ascent" to Understanding;
      Perception is "married" to Grace, or "meeting" Grace,
      Prudence is "married" to Perception, or meeting/being met
      by Perception. A disciplined approach.
      Now then, some might remain in one of those below, and
      while they remain there, the fullness of their potentional
      is contained within it. The threshold being.. actually -
      repentance, and therefore reflects a reversal of the psychic
      "fall" which is captured and mythologized by Pistis Sophia
      in many kindred accounts.

      There are _four_ associated to Sophia`s passion becoming concrete
      "elements"/particulars ; her fear becomes matter, her sorrow becomes
      psyche (associated with water)... in the system of Ptolemy.. I have to go
      dig for her passions now, but there appears to be a primitive intuition
      there coupled with certain theories which is philosophical...

      Observe, if you read the ApJhn. after the reference that this is where
      the generation of "The Man" and the ordering of the Pleroma ends and
      the myth of Sophia and the generation of the Demiurge begins..
      The editor/scribe of ApJhn. as it comes through to us in the Nag Hammadi
      find as well as the earlier ones (ApJhn. is part of the Papyrus
      Berlinoensis (?) Gnostic material as well, along with the now much hyped
      Gospel of Mary and the cryptic Revelation of Peter) present us with the
      idea of reality as seen/understood from the Inside outwards, being ordered
      from First Man (Adamas), whose reflection inspired the creation of psychic
      (there are three creations of Adam: one in Pleroma (his Image) - the
      Spiritual - one among the archons as an attempt to create a receptacle for
      the light/might inscribed in that "Image" (psychic- incidentally ApJhn.
      reveals that his second physiology depended on the understanding each of
      the archons had of First Man; our societies and the education they can
      give children to grow into "persons" depend on an architecture of
      understanding; what is Man? what makes him tick? etc. The
      educated,integrated,civil citizen, like it or not, might be compared to a
      Golem, an homunculus (artificial humanoid) ) - and a third, dismantled and
      reassembled into a physical physiology and put to "sleep" or ignorance of
      himself, a stupor the ascetics of the Egyptian Gnostic schools thought
      were contagious and heredetary from generation to generation, through the
      practises of reproduction... but cured through "swift knowledge",
      acquiantance with the mysteries, gradual purifications.. "perfect
      instruction"..
      The original Man - whose imprint was passed on into the generations
      through our "common forefather" Adam; comes from the four worlds, not as
      realms of a distinct nature, but as the emanation from the "Forethought"
      activated within the Unknown Father/Godhead; to which is added "their
      head", it rules over the right and the left, having superior knowledge and
      a superior "goodness", being the expression of the assent and consent and
      sanctification of the secret and unknown Virginal Spirit to all which
      followed.. the Autogenes (self-generated) and Mono-genes (only-begotten):
      other places we find him compared or even discussed as being Nous (Mind),
      sometimes as Logos, although this limits him to his outer and
      eschatological function as a carrier of Gnosis into the world, piercing it
      open- once its (the worlds) infected fabric has scarred over, containing
      and sealing all the pus and purefication over, rather than having it
      cleaned up..

      The "Gnostic" category suggested by Freke & Gandy has a problematic
      relationship to historical Gnosticism because it is considered in its
      context as "superior" to the "spiritual"/Pneumatic. G&F might feel more
      confident with a non-salvific Gnosis which is just a magnifying glass
      of true order inherent in the Universe, unchallenged and not truelly
      transformed.. this is the views of modern Hermetics who have little
      coherent knowledge of the meaning of the Opus Contra Natura; that
      it is *not* hyperbole or rhetoric against physical experience/existence
      or against "non-human biology", or escapism, cynicism or ill will.
      The Gn. systems usually are dynamic, their challenge is that the current
      knowledge - the totality of it - possessed by anyone in this world/system,
      is compromised by the interference of what Paul termed "powers and
      principalities in higher places" - Powers and Archons/rulers of the
      "heavens", i.e. what is perceived/understood to be on the immediate or far
      "rung" above our perceived position in the present "hierarchy" as
      perceived through such assembled knowledge we possess now. Even the
      Apostles are conceived of as having failed in discerning between these two
      types of knowledge, these two experiences of own identity. Apparently, the
      Gn. systems also suggest that the "future glory", envisioned as Angel,
      Robe, Mantle etc. - exist in such a radical contrariness to this ..
      knowledge (false knowledge).. that even dispersing and liberating one`s
      mind or perceptive apparatus, for but a little while, from the influence
      of these powers/archons - make the experience possible; thus prayer,
      purifications, mysteries and meditations. In Mani and in the system of
      some of the Sufi/Ishraqi teachers - this miniscule communion practise,
      which might be compared to "the contemplative life" - from inwards and
      outwards,
      is an expanding activity which eventually encompass the entire sentient
      span of being within the universe.



      Pax Pleromae


      --
      Terje Dahl Bergersen
      terje@...
      http://terje.bergersen.net/
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