3471Re: GTh 7
- Apr 4 9:40 PMI'm always interested to see correspondances between GThomas and
Philo. I hope you can provide us with more, Frank. But I think that
your argument has a few weak points (as all explanations of GThomas
#7, definitely including mine, seem to have):-
Does Philo ever use a lion as a symbol of the outer senses? An
"unreasoning creature" is rather a vague connection to a lion. As I
recall he says that Woman symbolises the outer senses, as in Eve.
Why should we think that man as a different meaning in one clause of
GThomas #7, except that it needs this to fit your interpretation?
Why the metaphor of eating?
Yours is a reasonable argument, but it's not a compelling match.
Anyway, more Philo please!
--- In gthomas@y..., "FMMCCOY" <FMMCCOY@e...> wrote:
> I am a new member writing on GTh 7, "Blessed is the lion which
> becomes man when consumed by man; and cursed is the man whom the
> comsumes, and the lion
> becomes man." I suggest that, underlying this saying, are some
> Christian ideas based on certain elements of the teachings of
> Jewish contemporary of Jesus and Paul.
> In Philionic thought, a human being is composed of three
> there is the body/flesh. Second, there is sense or sense-
perception. It is
> the irrational part of a human's soul. It also grades into the
> because it includes the organs of sense. Third, there is the mind,
> the rational part of the soul. It is potentially immortal. So, in
> 97, Philo states that "not only for the wooden and earthen mass of
> not only for the unreasoning creatures, the senses, are we taught
> the Benefactor, but also for the mind which may be truly called the
> within the man, the better part within the worst, the immortal
> Note that, in this statement by Philo, "man" has two meanings.
> it means "the mind". Second, it means "the body/flesh", within
> resides the mind. I suggest that this directly relates to GTh 7--
> "man" is mentioned four times. In the first three times, I
> means the inner man, i.e., the mind In the last time, though, it
> the outer man, i.e, the body/flesh..
> Note, too, that, in this statement by Philo, the senses are
> "unreasoning creatures". I think that this directly relates to GTh
> which refers to an unreasoning creature, i.e., a lion. This lion,
> represents the unreasoning creatures, i.e., the senses, taken
together as a
> unity, i.e., as one single unreasoning creature.
> In Philionic thought, the proper role of mind is to be the ruler
> proper role of sense-perception to be the subject. So, in LA iii
> states, "Most profitless is it that mind should listen to sense-
> and not sense-perception to mind; for it is always right that the
> should rule and the inferior be ruled; and mind is superior to
> I think this directly relates to GTh 7, where first the man eats
> lion and where, next, the lion eats the man. In the first case, we
> the inner man (i.e., the mind) ruling over the lion (i.e., sense-
> and, in the second case, we have the lion (i.e., sense-perception)
> over the inner man (i.e., the mind)..
> In Philionic thought, these two situations lead to radically
> outcomes. So, in LA iii, 50, he states, "For when that which is
> namely mind, becomes one with that which is inferior, namely,
> sense-perception, it resolves itself into the order of flesh which
> inferior, into sense-perception, the moving cause of the passions.
> sense the inferior follow mind the superior, there will be flesh no
> but both of them will be mind." So, when mind rules sense-
> sense-perception merges into mind and, thereby, becomes a part of
> However, when sense-perception rules the mind, then mind merges into
> sense-perception which, in turn, welds itself to (and, so, becomes
> of) the body-flesh.
> This directly relates to GTh 7."Blessed is the lion which
> when consumed by man; and cursed is the man whom the lion comsumes,
> lion becomes man." It begins by speaking of how, when the inner
> the mind) eats (i.e., rules over) the lion (i.e., sense-
> lion (i.e., sense-perception) becomes a part of the inner man
> mind). Then it speaks of how, when the lion (i.e., sense
> (i.e., rules over) the man (i.e., the mind), then the lion (i.e.,
> sense-perception) welds itself into (thereby becoming a part of)
> man (i.e., the body/flesh). In the first, case, sense-perception
> because, by becoming a part of the mind, it, too, can become
> the second case, the inner man (i.e., the mind) is cursed because
> lost its opportunity for immortality by becoming a part of the lion
> sense-perception), which then merged into (thereby becoming a part
> perishable outer man (i.e., the body/flesh).
> In the New Testament, the Philionic triad of body/flesh,
> sense-perception, and mind becomes a triad of body/flesh, psyche,
> (spirit) in those situations in which psyche and pneuma are
> So, in Mark's account of the agony at Gethsemane, Jesus says, "Very
> sorrowful is my psyche, even unto death." and "The pneuma (spirit)
> ready, but the flesh (is) weak." The psyche is sorrowful because
it is the
> irrational sense-perception, while the pneuma (spirit) is ready to
> death because it is the rational mind. Also see I Thess. 5:23,
> to "your psyche, pneuma (spirit), and body".
> In I Corinthians, Paul takes this one step further, dividing
> those who are ruled by their pneumas (minds) and those who are
> their psyches. When the pneuma rules, the psyche merges into the
> making them pure pneuma. Such a person is a pneumatikos man. When
> psyche rules, then the pneuma merges into psyche, making the whole
> psyche, and the psyche merges into the flesh. Such a person is a
> man, a man of the flesh.
> So, I Cor. 2:14-3:3, Paul states, "The psychikos man, receiving
> things of the Pneuma (Spirit) of God, for they are folly to him,
> cannot know (them) because they are pneumatikos (i.e., by the
> discerned. But the pneumatikos man judges all things, but he by no
> judged. 'For who did know (the) mind of the Lord? Who shall
> But we have (the) mind of Christ. And, I brethren, was not able to
> you as pneumatikos, but as to fleshly, as to babes in Christ.
> I gave you milk to drink, not food; for not yet were you able; but
> yet are you able--for you are yet fleshly."
> Since the psychikos man has a soul of pure psyche, he cannot
> Pneuma (Sprit) and the things it imparts, for they are perceived
> only by the pneuma (spirit). Since the pneumatikos man has a soul
> pneuma (spirit), he judges all things and is judged by no one
because he can
> perceive (and, so, has) the Mind = the Pneuma (Spirit) of the
> Corinthians, rather than being pneumatikos men whose souls are pure
> (spirit), are psychikos men whose souls are pure psyche and have
> the body/flesh, making them men of the flesh.
> The bottom line: what we have in GTh 7 is the blessing of a
> man whose inner man (i.e., the pneuma) has "eaten" his psyche,
> whole soul pure pneuma and the cursing of a psychikos man whose
> "eaten" his inner man (i.e., the pneuma), making his whole soul
> and whose whole soul of psyche has merged into his outer man (i.e.,
> body/flesh), making him a man of flesh.
> To conclude, GTh 7 is based on the Philionic notion that a human
> consists of the body/flesh, sense-perception, and mind and related
> ideas regarding the relationships between sense-perception and the
> the New Testament, when psyche and pneuma are distinguished from
> (an important qualifier, for they are frequently treated as
> Philionic triad of body/flesh, sense-perception, and mind becomes
> of body/flesh, psyche, and pneuma. Judging by Mark's account of
> at Gethsemane, this was first done by Jesus himself--who, in this
> some familiarity with Philionic thought and decided to alter Philo's
> mind-senseperception division into a pysch-pneuma division. This
> body/flesh, psyche and pneuma was known to Paul by the time he and
> wrote I Thess (i.e., c. 50 CE). In I Corinthians,. Paul used it to
> his concept of the division of mankind into the psychikos men of
> and the pneumatikos men. In GTh 7, the pneumatikos men are
blessed, but the
> psychikos men of the flesh are cursed. Because of this, it is
> GTh 7 either arose in the Corinthian church or else reached its
> Frank McCoy
> Maplewood, MN USA
- << Previous post in topic