Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

RE: [GTh] 99 Sheep

Expand Messages
  • David C. Hindley
    ... become partly entangled in the material world. Achamoth (from the Hebrew equivalent of Sophia or Wisdom Chokmah), refers to Sophia in her lower or fallen
    Message 1 of 3 , Nov 29, 2003
    • 0 Attachment
      Andrew Criddle says:

      >>In Gnostic speculation Sophia is an originally heavenly being who has
      become partly entangled in the material world. Achamoth (from the Hebrew
      equivalent of Sophia or Wisdom Chokmah), refers to Sophia in her lower or
      fallen form<<

      This does not appear to be an entirely accurate statement. She was not
      "entangled" in the material world but actually produced it! Dang if I don't
      have a table of the valentinian system that I teased out of Irenaeus'
      _Against Heresies_, but I can't find it. I also have a book with a slightly
      different table culled from a variety of sources (Irenaeus may not be the
      most objective or accurate source for these details anyhow), but that is
      being elusive as well. However, I did find a web page that claims to give
      the Valentinian story of Sophia:

      A formless entity emanated from the Aeon Sophia on account of her unnatural
      desire to know the entity called the Fore-Father (the name for the first
      created pair of Mind-Truth, which cannot be known by the later Aeon
      emanations), almost like the product of an unnatural reasoning process. She
      was ultimately saved from her horrible error in reasoning by the Aeon pair
      Christ-Holy Spirit, which had been specially created by the other Aeons to
      save the pleroma from catastrophe. If I understand the web page correctly,
      the Aeon Christ shaped the formless entity emanated by the Aeon Sophia into
      the form of an aeon, but one that existed outside of the pleroma. It was
      THIS lower level aeon that was called Achamoth (based on the Hebrew word for
      wisdom), and it was Achamoth who created the demiurge to rule over the
      material realm.
      http://www.kheper.net/topics/Gnosticism/fall.html (the author of which seems
      to compress some of the story elements and sometimes uses his own words to
      describe the process, not the technical terms used in the texts)

      Respectfully,

      Dave Hindley
      Cleveland, Ohio, USA
    • sarban
      ... From: David C. Hindley To: Sent: Sunday, November 30, 2003 2:29 AM Subject: RE: [GTh] 99 Sheep ...
      Message 2 of 3 , Nov 30, 2003
      • 0 Attachment
        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "David C. Hindley" <dhindley@...>
        To: <gthomas@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Sunday, November 30, 2003 2:29 AM
        Subject: RE: [GTh] 99 Sheep


        > Andrew Criddle says:
        >
        > >>In Gnostic speculation Sophia is an originally heavenly being who has
        > become partly entangled in the material world. Achamoth (from the Hebrew
        > equivalent of Sophia or Wisdom Chokmah), refers to Sophia in her lower or
        > fallen form<<
        >
        > This does not appear to be an entirely accurate statement. She was not
        > "entangled" in the material world but actually produced it! Dang if I
        don't
        > have a table of the valentinian system that I teased out of Irenaeus'
        > _Against Heresies_, but I can't find it. I also have a book with a
        slightly
        > different table culled from a variety of sources (Irenaeus may not be the
        > most objective or accurate source for these details anyhow), but that is
        > being elusive as well. However, I did find a web page that claims to give
        > the Valentinian story of Sophia:
        >
        > A formless entity emanated from the Aeon Sophia on account of her
        unnatural
        > desire to know the entity called the Fore-Father (the name for the first
        > created pair of Mind-Truth, which cannot be known by the later Aeon
        > emanations), almost like the product of an unnatural reasoning process.
        She
        > was ultimately saved from her horrible error in reasoning by the Aeon pair
        > Christ-Holy Spirit, which had been specially created by the other Aeons to
        > save the pleroma from catastrophe. If I understand the web page correctly,
        > the Aeon Christ shaped the formless entity emanated by the Aeon Sophia
        into
        > the form of an aeon, but one that existed outside of the pleroma. It was
        > THIS lower level aeon that was called Achamoth (based on the Hebrew word
        for
        > wisdom), and it was Achamoth who created the demiurge to rule over the
        > material realm.
        > http://www.kheper.net/topics/Gnosticism/fall.html (the author of which
        seems
        > to compress some of the story elements and sometimes uses his own words to
        > describe the process, not the technical terms used in the texts)
        >
        The short answer is: You are correct and I was wrong

        The long answer is: The developed versions of Valentinianism clearly teach
        two separate beings the higher Wisdom and the lower (fallen) Wisdom. In
        the system of Ptolemaeus (described by Irenaeus) the higher wisdom is called
        Sophia and the lower Achamoth. In the Gospel of Philip the higher wisdom is
        Echamoth and the lower (from a Hebrew pun) Echmoth. Our limited knowledge
        of the original teaching of Valentinus makes it unclear whether he
        recognised two wisdoms and some interpret the teaching of Theodotus the
        Valentinian as preserved by Clement of Alexandria in terms of one wisdom or
        Sophia with unfallen and fallen aspects.
        It maybe then that the docrine of two separate wisdoms definitely found in
        developed Valentinianism is an elaboration of an original single Sophia who
        starts off unfallen and becomes entangled in the material world.

        Andrew Criddle
      Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.