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[gthomas] Re: The Lion again

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  • ben@tartaroukos.com
    Original post follows this reply: In response to Andrews question: Does anyone else think that these add up to suggest an ultimately Jewish source for Logion
    Message 1 of 2 , Sep 13, 1999
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      Original post follows this reply:

      In response to Andrews question: "Does anyone else think that these add
      up to suggest an ultimately Jewish source for Logion #7?"

      The evidence presented below is not significant enough to warrant
      attribution of the logion to jewish sources. Especially since the rest
      of GTH appears to be derisive if not down right hostile to
      Judaism/Jews/Israel. Also, mythological world referenced by Logion #7
      is mostly likely one so syncretistic if not absolutely Gnostic that it
      would almost necessitate a non-jewish origin. Remember
      pre-Chrisitian/Jewish Gnosticism is at best a scholar postulation.

      A well reasoned and thorough treatment of this Logion is best found in
      the classic dissertation of Dr. Howard Jackson: "The Lion Becomes Man:
      The Gnostic Leontomorphic Creator and the Platonic Tradition."

      In other words, I think that GTH is doing exactly the opposite of what
      is proposed. Judaism vis-a-vie YAHWEH is transformed into the
      demiurge, not a good thing, and is judged harshly by Thomas Christians.

      Ben Church
      ben@...


      be-@... wrote:
      original article:http://www.egroups.com/group/gthomas/?start=1516
      > Logion 7 states, "Blessed is the lion which the man eats, and the lion
      > will become man, and cursed is the man which the lion eats, and the
      > lion will become man."
      >
      > from the Talmud:
      > "When Rabbi Hanina ben Dosa prayed, a poisonous reptile bit him, but
      he did
      > not interrupt his prayer. They departed and found the same 'snake'
      dead at
      > the opening of its hole. 'Woe to the man', they exclaimed, 'bitten by
      a
      > snake, but woe to the snake which has bitten Rabbi Hanina ben Dosa.'
      >
      > This seems like an interesting parallel to me, at least as to the
      form of
      > the saying.
      >
      > As to the symbolism of the story, I do think that that it is common
      to that
      > of Samson and the lion. Samson kills the lion, then marries Delilah,
      then
      > sees the corpse of the lion, in which bees have nested, producing
      honey. He
      > takes the honey and eats it. This seems to have much in common with
      "blessed
      > is the lion that the man eats.", in that the lion been transformed,
      "out of
      > the eater came what is eaten, and out of the strong came what is
      sweet."
      >
      > A similar motif is found in the story of Daniel in the lion's pit. In
      Daniel
      > 6:17-25 the men who had accused Daniel are eaten by the lions, whereas
      > Daniel survives because an angel stops the mouths of the lions. In
      the later
      > addition to the story, part of Bel and the Dragon in the Apocrypha,
      Daniel
      > 14:31-42, an angel takes the prophet Habakkuk by the hair to the lion
      pit
      > where he gives his meal to Daniel and then is whisked off again by the
      > angel. So again, although Daniel doesn't literally eat the lions, he
      is
      > given food by an angel while he is in with the lions, in contrast to
      the men
      > who are eaten by the lions.
      >
      > Does anyone else think that these add up to suggest an ultimately
      Jewish
      > source for Logion #7?
      >
      > Andrew Smith
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