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Re: Response to Karl

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  • Karl
    Hey Tom, you state... ... analytical process. However my point is that it is a structured art- form that has natural tendencies which gives it certain
    Message 1 of 2 , Jan 10, 2005
      Hey Tom, you state...

      >>>"I certainly did not mean to imply that music is a strictly
      analytical process. However my point is that it is a structured art-
      form that has natural tendencies which gives it certain

      True, and I believe this was also the way the traditional groups we
      are talking about saw their initiatory process. It has become quite
      popular in sensationalist writings intended for popular consumption
      to see them reinterperate "Gnosis" as an entirely personal and
      relativistic notion. I believe this misconception comes from the
      assumption that the "know thyself" maxim meant back then exactly the
      same as it does in the modern popular sense.

      >>>"I did not think I implied that the Orthodox was so removed from
      the Gnostic. I think there are both subtle and profound differences.
      These differences separate the Gnostic from the Orthodox, and the
      boundaries are not yet fully understood. Certainly, we cannot look at
      Orthodox ideas and align them with ideas inherently Gnostic and not
      see they are part of a separate epistemology."<<<

      And yet, there was Valentinus, right in and amongst the "Orthodox"
      Christians. It is quite clear that they did not see themselves as
      seperate, only at a higher level in the initiatory process of the
      same movement as the "Orthodox" Christians.

      >>>"Clement isn't Gnostic? In my opinion Clement is 'the' Gnostic who
      preserves the 'hidden' in his works in "Stromata." This text is as
      close to "Gnosticism for Dummies" as can be found. Clement's
      description of Craftsmen being Gnostics is a plain 'slam dunk' to
      linking what he calls Craftsmen, with what Acts, and Pauline letters
      describe as 'gifted' or Pneumatics. These are clearly descriptions of
      Gnostics. These brief descriptions tell us little, but it does tell
      us they were there."<<<

      Well, I could argue that Gnosticism was not meant for Dummies *lol*.
      Seriously though, I understand that your personal definition
      of "Gnosticism" incudes groups outside the more technical usage of
      the term. On the other hand, Clement was quit explicit in his hatred
      of other groups that didn't fit his ethical or theological or
      soteriological model.

      >>>"If Davies is correct about the link of Thomas to the I-Ching, and
      I think he is more than he knows, we can link some information about
      Thomas to the fundamentals in this system of philosophy. The I-Ching,
      is linked to sound fundamentals, and is not all soothsaying. It is
      based upon sound ideas of duality. What I see the Gnostics added to
      these perceptions of the world, is their outlook on the human flaw as
      seen in the Hylic (choikus, salkas, etc.) - Psychic- Pneumatic
      perception of the hierarchy of Gnostic attainment. Gnostic
      attainment can be measured, and aligned with the degree of mastership
      one has in the "Crafts.""<<<

      It is ok to speculate, but I do draw the line at the Da Vinci code
      kind of sensationalism. Even though I think the direction you have
      taken previously has some interesting areas to open for
      conversation.... I can't converse if we are going to go off the deep
      end here. So, I hope you are not trying to tell me that Freemasons
      and the I Ching are actually "Gnosticism". Perhaps I misunderstood
      you there, so I will wait for clerification.

      >>>"Hello! No, Clement wasn't Gnostic, hell no! He wasn't at least
      until we had Thomas, and the NHL. Now we have to understand what
      Clement was talking about was exploring the human potential and using

      Perhaps, but this is irrelevant as to whether he was Gnostic. In
      order to fit the category of "Gnosticism", you need to demonstrate a
      couple of things. One, you need to show that he used the cosmology of
      Gnosticism, including a destinction between the Demiurge and the
      spiritual source (with the latter being a system of emenations from a
      single apophatic source). Two, you need to demonstrate that instead
      of Gnosis being the begining of the soteriological process, it is the

      After this point you went on to talk about the notion of being
      the "Craftsmen", but you did not answer my question about where you
      got the term.... nor my point concerning the fact that the word had
      negative meaning for many Gnostics. I am taking this moment to remind
      you. Without that I can't concede the term as more than an arbitrary
      quality you are attempting to eisegetically intropolate. This becomes
      very problematic after the possibility that you seemed to also be
      reading other religious outlines into "Gnosticism" in a sort of
      Jungian manner. I will be happy if I am wrong on this matter, but I
      do have a fear that this conversation may be starting to resemble
      the "Jesus Mysteries" rather than a sober understanding of Gnosticism
      as it was really understood by the historical practitioners.

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