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The Power of Gnosis (Knowledge). No mechanicity can AWAKEN US, no mechanicity can INTIMATELY SELF-REALIZE US. SELF-REALIZATION can only be the result of a conscious and positive work upon ourselves and no Mechanical Law can do this work for us. We believe in EVOLUTION and believe in INVOLUTION, but we do not believe, we can never believe, and we can not accept, that the MECHANICAL LAW OF EVOLUTION could ever AWAKEN our consciousness and mechanically lead us to PROFOUND INTERIOR SELF-REALIZATION.

The entrance on the pathway of the gnosis is called a’ going home

The secret of the Gnostic-Hermetic transformation does not come from the books (such as this one) or maps or drawings of others, but from our own personal self-awakening.

Ancient authors declare that the true Philosopher’s Stone, to be coveted by all, was the new life in Christ Jesus.’ Only by victory over Self could any win victory over nature. To the selfish and the godless no secrets would be revealed.

In the Egyptian system of the Five Bodies, we find a metaphor for alchemical work. The separated elements —Earth, Air, Fire and Water—symbolized by the four lower bodies, are refined and realigned into the reality of the Fifth the indestructible Diamond Self, the Philosopher’s Stone—the symbol of unity and realization.

No mechanicity can AWAKEN US, no mechanicity can INTIMATELY SELF-REALIZE US. SELF-REALIZATION can only be the result of a conscious and positive work upon ourselves and no Mechanical Law can do this work for us.

We believe in EVOLUTION and believe in INVOLUTION, but we do not believe, we can never believe, [andj we can not accept, that the MECHANICAL LAW OF EVOLUTION could ever AWAKEN our consciousness and mechanically lead us to PROFOUND INTERIOR SELF-REALIZATION.

In addition , this pure gnostic energy is present in all life forms as a latent source – potential of subde depth – radiance , though absent in its manifest , actualized dimensions . It is this inner seed – core of enlightened energy or ” Buddha – nature or Christ Consciousness.

Therefore, Finding Your Benben Stone, is about your experience of Gnosis or a spiritual self-awakening unto the Great Cosmic Creator. This spiritual self-awakening unto Christ (KRST) Consciousness was called by the Gnostics “Gnosis,” which is true so-called salvation. The Old Testament scribes wrote about the “the Lord” as one’s “light” and “salvation,” which is an illustration of Gnosis, “The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1, KJV). Here the authors are esoterically saying that “the LORD” is without evocation a subconscious mind, which is your “light” of Truth that leads you into enlightenment or Gnosis revelations and experiences.

The benben stone in Egypt represents a parallel to the “philosopher’s stone” of Western alchemy.

This stone has not only the power of transmuting any imperfect earthy matter into its utmost degree of perfec-tion, and can convert the basest metals into gold, flints into stone, but it has still more occult virtues, when the arcana have been entered into by the choice fathers of her-metic mysteries. The vegetable stone has power over the natures of man, beast, fowls, fishes, and all kinds of trees and plants, to make them flourish and bear fruit at any time, The magical stone discovers any person wherever he is con-cealed ; while the angelical stone gives the apparitions of angels, and a power of conversing with them.

The .Alchymists attributed to the philosopher’s stone three essential properties ; the changing of the viler metals into silver and gold, the curing of all diseases, and the prolonging of human life beyond its natural limits. But, although all of them are agreed as to its power of changing other metals into gold, there is a remarkable discrepancy among them as to the proportions necessary to be employed to produce this transmutation.

Basil Valentine says, ” that he who possesses the philosopher’s stone will never be attacked by sickness or infirmities, until the last hour which has been assigned to him by the King of Heaven.” But all the adepts were not content with limiting the powers of this medi-cine to the prolonging of life, in unbroken health and vigour, to the extreme of its natural limits.

Sufis have mastered the alchemy of the heart, through which the energy of love transforms the individual to reveal the light hidden within the darkness of the nafs or lower self. “The Light of the Heart”) for working with the chambers of the heart to effect an inner transformation that gives the wayfarer access to the light of his true nature. This work clots not belong just to the individual, but can have a direct relationship to the whole of creation and the heart of the world. Once we recognise the mysterious connection between our own innermost essence and the Soul of the World, we can use the tools of inner transformation to work directly with the Soul of the World, to help the anima mtmdi reveal its divine light and awaken.

As a result of Jung’s writings on alchemy, we have begun to understand the nature of the inner alchemical work. The work on the alchemical lead—the prima materia, that which is “glorious and vile, precious and of small account and is found everywhere”‘—is the work on the shadow, the rejected and unacknowledged parts of our psyche.

The philosopher’s stone, the gold made from the lead, is our own true nature, the Self. Rather than a transcendent, disembodied divinity, alchemy reveals a divine light that exists in the very depths of our psyche.

This light hidden in darkness, the lumen naturae, is also our instinctual self and natural way of being, which until it is revealed is covered over by patterns of conditioning and the layers of the false self.

What is the difference between the light discovered in the depths of the psyche and the light of our transcendent divine Self glimpsed in meditation or other experiences? it is the same light experienced in different ways. The Sufis know that the Beloved, the source of all light, has both an immanent and a transcendent qual-ity. He whom we love is both ‘nearer to him than his jugular vein” and “beyond even his idea of the beyond.”

The Self, “larger than large and smaller than small,” has the same dual quality. The yogi deep in meditation and the alchemist in his laboratory are seeking the same light, the same divine nature. Everything that we experience has a dual nature, a masculine and a feminine aspect, and the same is true of the light of the Self.

It can be experienced in its mas-culine form as a pure transcendent light, consciousness without the constrictions of the psyche or the physical world. In meditation we can first glimpse and then rest in our eternal and infinite nature, and come to know a reality not defined or constricted by our body or the manifest world.

This is a reality of light upon light, our colorless and formless essence. We can also come to know our divine nature in its feminine, embodied nature, as the light of being, our natural wisdom, the gold of our true nature. In this light we experience and know the divine within creation, the way our Beloved reveals Himself in a multitude of forms, each form a different expression of H is infinite being. We see how each color, each smell, every taste, even every thought and feeling, is a unique expression of the divine. In this way we come to know Him in His creation in a way that is hidden in the transcendent.

God Is the return to the Self of No-Self, the Ultimate Pursuit of Self-Awakening to obtain the Essense of the God-within, the Central Consciousness, and the Inner Stream from which All Mows, riding the turbulent tides of the Great Illusion, of which the All Is. God Is the Philosophers Stone of No-God, No-Self, sometimes called by their own ego-name, others Olympus, or Mount Mew, or Zion, or Mount Sufferance, which ever the preference of ones’ Iron God-like Will, the Spirit of All Living Beings, several billions of brain-matter crawling the earth, and several billions of God-entities to contend with, all rushing to make their mark in the spacial continuum of times’ lucid transparency. But I dont care for extinction, nor to engulf myself in the extremities of a nirvana you can neither see nor feel, but rather touch the Face of God within the boundaries of this life, living in the limitless everness of forever, to see and feel In this state of perplexed euphoria, the awesome glee in this existence, to glory in the Self of every Self, and whatever tread the path does take, fine in the fundamental belief that I am in fact touching the Grace of God right now, in every particular moment, the Diamond Eye clarifying each instant It cares to place Itself in -a Human Nirvana far beyond the parallels of words that hold no definitive end there Is no end, nothing to submit to, but the endless beginnings super-imposed In the vast beginningless universe content to be devoured by a Diamond Eye in the Skull of Eternity. To be of a God, of an Essense, further than the Word can tell; the Buddha-God Awakened to wake up.

As long as the true nature of man is not known, his lower interests are mistaken for his higher ones. Scientific attainments are often only used for the purpose. of obtaining the power to speculate on the ignorance of those that have no such intellectual acquirements, and by taking advantage of their beliefs to obtain money awl material comfort. Such scientific attainments may be good for such purposes, but they retard the progress of an in a spiritual direction, because they make men more ‘selfish, and cause them to worship matter ; they are therefore— -to say th.e least—useless for the only true and. permanent interest of man,

“We speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory” (1 Cor. 2:7)

The gnostic said, “ Whenever the gnostic comes to know the universal , nothing remains hidden from him. The realization of gnosis meant access to the hidden world. The Gnostics were knowers; they were a people who knew not believed in the reality of the divine spirit. They were a people who had rituals in which profound spiritual experiences took place, of which the visionary experience of knowledge was a central factor. Thus, it is this experience of knowledge that not only categorizes the Gnostic tradition, but defines it. To the Gnostics, the attainment of such knowledge always constituted the supreme achievement of human life.

It must be noted that the source of this ‘Thirst of knowledge” is the creativeness of the Cosmic Magnet, which “impels humanity toward Truth”t. Moreover, N. Roerich believes that in the seed of the spirit lives the realization of knowledge, i.e., it contains the possibility of understanding the cosmos: “Spirit, in thy essence thou hest revealed the beauty of sacred knowledge”

This knowledge hidden in the seed of the spirit inclines one toward Infinity, and the important thing is that the spirit has to strive for the realization of all the subtle principles in order to attain higher knowledge, because through knowledge man can find access to higher spheres. N. Roerich stresses that the quest of truth opens “limitless vistas for the sacred union with the Supreme”.

On the one hand, Infinity is unknown in the world and cannot be perceived from it; therefore revelation is needed. Its bearer is a messenger from the world of light who penetrates the barriers of the spheres, awakens the spirit and imparts to it the saving knowledge “from without”. Knowledge thus revealed, called “the sacred knowledge”, “unlimited knowledge”, comprises everything.

On the practical side, however, it is more particularly “knowledge of the way”, namely the way of the individual spirit out of the world. Equipped with this gnosis, the individual spirit after death travels upwards. Thus, the individual spirit becomes reunited with Infinity. On the other hand, the “sacred union with the Supreme” through knowledge comes from within, because “… every […] knowledge comes from within”. Let us note, at once, the very meaning of the word within.

According to theosophical interpretation, knowledge hidden in the seed of the spirit is comprised of former accumulations: “The stratification of observations over the extent of many lives, laid in the depths of consciousness, is called dormant wisdom”. If these accumulations, called dormant wisdom, are insufficient, it is impossible to achieve enlightenment. Consequently, ascending the steps of evolution, the best attainment of the human spirit is the development of the hidden forces and accumulation of new knowledge which brings the realization of Infinity: “… ascent is the page of wisdom on which is traced the entire power of Cosmos and the manifestation of motion”.

When humanity will realize the great unity between Infinity and the particles, it will acquire “[the] highest wisdom of Infinity, the rays of which play on the Lotus of Consciousness”. We may say that the principal aim of the Roerichs’ doctrine is the perfection of knowledge as a means to becoming one with the source of life. The ultimate “object” of knowledge is Infinity: its event in the spirit transforms the knower himself by making him a partaker in Infinity.

Thus, the knowledge is not only an instrument of salvation but itself the very form in which the goal of salvation, i.e., ultimate perfection,’ is possessed. To this must be added that the Roerichs exclude the possibility of ever achieving absolute knowledge, and therein they see the entire grandeur of life: with every new improvement, with each higher evolution of humanity, with each succeeding cycle of our planet, knowledge will be higher and more complete, and so on into Infinity.

In addition, most Gnostic texts and sys-tems reflect a belief in a proliferated array of intermediary beings who inhabit the cosmos between the Pleroma and the earthly realm of humanity. Though the Gnostics understood hu-manity to be trapped within the physical body, the human spirit is understood to be part of the ultimate spiritual reality (the Heron= and/ or the ultimate God).

This entrapment is usu-ally understood as ignorance or sleep, but not as sin. In order for the human spirit to find sal-vation, it needs to be awakened and delivered from its ignorance by recovering the knowledge (gnosis) of its true self as part of the Pleroma or ultimate God. Thus, the ultimate God sent a redeemer from the Pleroma to bring knowledge to imprisoned human spirits.

Although this redeemer figure can be variously described in Gnostic texts (e.g., as Seth), the majority of the Christian Gnostic texts, of course, identify the redeemer figure with the Christ. Christ then taught the Gnostic “elect.” through “revelation discourses’ the truth about reality and salva-tion. Since the body is evil, Gnostics believed Christ’s human form was docetic (i.e., only appearing human), and thus did not actually die on the cross—a substitute died at the hands of the inferior god and its intermediary powers.

The Gnostics, according to their own writ-ings, tended very strongly to an ascetic lifestyle. The denial of the reality and importance of the human body is the appropriate response for those who know the true character of salvation and the Plcroma.

It seems to me, remains uncomfortably trapped within a fundamental dualism that sees human life as constructed from irreconcilable antinomies: flesh and spirit, evolution and creation, the body struggling to differentiate itself from its animal roots, and the divine spark donated from above.

“Struggle between the flesh and the spirit, rebellion and resistance, reconciliation and submission, and finally — the supreme purpose of the struggle — union with God: this was the ascent taken by Christ, the ascent which he invites us to take as well.”

The path that his Jesus follows towards greater understanding is a way of askesis, of spiritual struggle, that entails divesting the spirit of its encumbrance of flesh. To get nearer to God, you have to get further away from the human condition.

In order to mount to the Cross, the summit of sacrifice, and to God, the summit of immateriality, Christ passed through all the stages, which the man who struggles passes through.’ This path of spiritual ascent is always from the material to the immaterial” and from the flesh to the spirit. The ‘Last Temptation’ is the culmination of this process and the final and ultimate rejection of the domain of the senses, the realm of the flesh and the world of common human destiny. But this seems to be a betrayal of the principle of incarnation, since it shows Jesus unable to reconcile godliness and life in the body. As Macqarrie says, ‘to save the whole of man Christ must have taken on the whole of man’.

The message of the Buddha’, says Carnegie Samuel Calians, ‘is to free oneself from fear and hope by giving up desire.

Kazantzakis . . . considered humanity’s greatest duty to be the transubstantiation of all matter into spirit, an idea drawn predominantly from Buddha and from Bergson’s immanent life force, the élan vital, which seeks freedom from material obstruction and imprisonment.

The arrival of the apostles signals the breaking of the spell, the enchantment dissolved and the illusion revealed. The guardian angel was Satan. Jesus completes his final cry, and empties himself into the death of the cross. Both the passion, and the novel, are ‘accomplished’.

You now have scientists in your world who are recognising that your body-circuitry, the ‘wiring up’ of all of your functions, has somehow been incomplete. This disconnected wiring, related to your not-fully-functioning DNA strands, has been explored in depth in other books and we would urge you to read further on this subject.

Why have we brought this up? It is to point out that the nature of human bodies contains faulty wiring and incomplete memories of who you are in creation and what magical creation abilities you have. Jesus fell into this human body trap from the moment he incarnated into a body and was immediately subject to limitations and emo-tions such as doubt and fear that do not exist in a non-incarnational form.

The ancient Gnostics responded to experiences of divine transcendence by concluding that the world itself is an alien and wicked place, the creation not of the true god of the Beyond but of an evil divinity, or of divine “lowly powers?’

Into this world each human spirit (pneuma) has strayed from its true source, but escape from alienation in the prison of the world and return to the true god of the Beyond is possible. At the individual level the imprisoning element is not just the body but also the soul, because for the Gnostics, Hans Jonas explains, not only the body but also the soul “is a product of the cosmic powers,” so that through both “his body and his soul man is a part of the world and subjected to [worldly fate].” However, enclosed in the soul “is the spirit, or pneuma' (called also thespark’), a portion of the divine substance from beyond which has fallen into the world.”

Salvation of one’s spirit—one’s spark of true divinity—may be attained by gaining correct knowledge (gnosis): knowledge about the pneuma imprisoned in each human being, knowledge about the true god of the Beyond and of the nature and origins of our worldly prison, and knowledge of the methods or techniques that, when practiced, will ensure deliverance.

Gnostic writings envision the cosmos as a vast prison , of which the earth is the deepest dungeon , in which humans are imprisoned.

Knowledge enables man (that is , the Ophitic Gnostic) to reach back to the prime godhead.

The most significant aspects of these beliefs were firstly dualism — the idea that cosmic forces of Light and Darkness, Order and Chaos, were eternally ranged against each other; and secondly the existence of secret and mysterious powers, which could be made available to initiates who were shown how to acquire them by those who had already found the keys to their secret doors.

Spirit and matter were incompatible and irreconcilable — but somehow artificially emulsified here on earth, like oil and water, and always seeking ways to escape from each other. Light was conceived of as being trapped in darkness: spirit was imprisoned in matter. The Gnostic and the Hermeticist sought in their different ways to find the secret of releasing them — only then, so they believed, would true freedom, happiness and everlasting life be attainable.

After this divine substance fell to Earth , the Archons deliberately created human beings in order to imprison the spirit. The process of self – discovery begins as a person experiences the anguish and terror of the human condition.

Although he is immersed in a dimension of infinity, he is only a human imprisoned in time and space, and it is this conflict that defines his tragedy.

Gnosticism has a characteristic theology, according to which there is a transcendent supreme God beyond the god or powers responsible for the world in which we live. There is in Gnosticism a cosmology that entails a dualist stance, according to which the cosmos, having been created by an inferior power, is a dark prison in which human souls are held captive.

Gnostic anthropology views the essential human being as constituted by an inner self, a divine spark that originated in the transcendent divine world and that can, through gnosis, be released from the cosmic prison and return to its heavenly origin. The human body is part of the cosmic prison from which essential “man” must be redeemed. The notion of release from the cosmic prison entails an eschatology that, in its simplest form, assigns salvation to those with gnosis, and ultimate annihilation to the cosmos and its minions.

Hand in hand with the proclamation of the Pneuma – oáp goes the radical derogation of the flesh by the Gnostic charismatics.

A human being is a divine spark that originated in the transcendent divine world and, by means of gnosis, can be released from the cosmic prison and return to its heavenly origin.

Gnosis – The Secret Teachings of All Ages. The true inner secrets are known by those who ascend by the regular practice of meditation into an illumined state. Gnosis is a Greek word which means to know. The true inner secrets are known by those who ascend by the regular practice of meditation into an illumined state? Secret is concerned with this knowledge. What secret knowledge could be any greater than this? HIDDEN KNOWLEDGE-THE KEY THAT UNLOCKS THE SPIRIT

The true inner secrets are known by those who ascend by the regular practice of meditation into an illumined state . … Gnosis is a Greek word which means to know.

Gnostics claim to know God and it is reasonable to assume that the Great Secret is concerned with this knowledge.

Secret is concerned with this knowledge. What secret knowledge could be any greater than this? Gnostics have kept the secret alive in their writing, in stories, in mysteries and in parables. This was the way they taught their new initiates, with these stories that were designed to highlight the secret wisdom.

First , gnosis connotes the state of possessing secret , sacred knowledge , and the Greek gnosis , “ knowledge , ” equates a specific kind of knowledge and salvation.

While the Gnostics valued and appreciated the world of the spiritual creator God, they believed that the demiurge had fabricated the material world precisely to prevent humans from understanding and knowing the true creator God. The physi-cal world was a trap that caused a seeming narcosis, or a sleep state, among humans. Gnosis, true knowledge and insight, be-gan when the stupor induced by the demiurge was overcome. That awakening required a savior who would come to release the Gnostics from their stupor of materiality. The savior’s work was to proclaim the existence of the spiritual world and the reality of the true, spiritual God. This proclamation was a clarion call to throw off the dulling effects of material existence and to begin to pursue the way to true, spiritual knowledge.

HIDDEN KNOWLEDGE-THE KEY THAT UNLOCKS THE SPIRIT

But how to do this? How could the Gnostics transcend their materiality and ascend to the higher, more spiritual world? The demiurge locked their true spiritual selves behind the door of materiality. Once the Gnostics had the proper key to unlock that door, they could enter the truly spiritual world. The key was gnosis, secret and mysterious knowledge.

But what was this hidden knowledge knowledge? Each Gnostic system answered that question in different ways.

True knowledge was deposited in the sacred scriptures, the Bible. So much of Gnostic knowledge emerged from the interpretation of specific biblical passages.

When properly interpreted, these biblical passages (and many others as well) provided the Gnostic with the saving knowledge that would thwart the demiurge.

That knowledge also involved the recognition that the mind needed to be awakened from its material stupor before it could be connected to the truly spiritual world and to the divine mind that created it. Theological anthropology, the religious under-standing of the nature of the human being, provided the rationale. Human beings consisted of body, soul (psyche), and spirit (pneuma).

Gnostics believed that only the spirit, not the soul, could intuit the divine realm. Therefore, the body needed to be trained to submit to the soul, and the soul, in turn, to sub-mit to the spirit, which connected the human to God. Gnostics often described this process as discovering and following a “divine spark” that resided in the person, a divine spirit that, properly understood, would lead to true knowledge of self and of the true God.

To defeat the demiurge and gain access to the divine mind of God, Gnostics also required up-to-date “scientific” knowledge, which they gleaned from cosmology, astrology, demonol-ogy, angelology, medicine, physics, mathematics, geometry, and sophisticated interpretations of the scriptures (remember, the “scientific method,” with its objective proofs and experimenta-tion, was still more than a thousand years in the future.

As for those ignorant unfortunates who were oriented only to the body and the soul, not to the divine spirit, many of them found much to resent in the Gnostic? smug sense of election. Resentment of the Gnostics’ seemingly arrogant presumption, as much as any doctrinal issues, fueled the intense opposition that would eventually drive them underground. Often these themes of the Gnostic call, the spark of knowl-edge, and the Gnostic election coalesce in Gnostic sayings. The following saying from the Gospel ofTbomas reads almost like a Gnostic creed:

Jesus said, if interested people say to you, From where do you comer reply to them, ‘We come from the light, from the place where the light created itself use!! and appeared in its own image.’ If they hey ask futher, Are you the light?’ reply to them, ‘We are its children, and we are the elect of the living Father.’ If they ask you for proof that the Father dwells in you, answer them in this way, It is motion and rest’ ” – THE GOSPEL OF THOMAS

The hytic person was completely oriented toward the mate-rial world. The hylic person had no intimations of the divine spark, could not hear the call of the Savior, and was completely Lacking in the insight or knowledge to begin an ascent toward the divine. The hylics was asleep and unaware, completely en-trapped in the material world. Hylics existed as animated corpses, or as brute beasts, unable to understand either theta-selves or others, and they certainly could not comprehend the nature of God. The psychic person was one step beyond the hylic.

The psychic person had an inkling that the spiritual and divine realm existed. Psychic people knew enough to understand that the material world debilitated them, but not enough to perceive the divine spark, or to hear the call of the Savior, or to begin to ascend. Gnostic Christians considered regular churchgoing Christians to be psychic Christians. The psychic Christians at least knew that there is more to life than mere appearance and materiality, but they did not know how to transcend them. The Gnostic was a pneumatic person.

These people understood their election to ascent; they recognized the interior di-vine spark. They had heard the Savior’s call, and they oriented themselves completely to their ascent to the divine realm. The pneumatics alone understood the true nature of the world as a demiurgk imitation of the true spiritual world of God. They alone pursued the knowledge necmary to progress through the cosmos toward divine union. Gnostics were by nature pneumatics; all other people must be either psychics or hylics.

For our purposes, the defining characteristic of Gnosticism was its focus on the discovery of hidden knowledge and hidden “Truth.

The more general term, gnosis, refers to “knowledge of the divine mysteries reserved for an elite.’ Indeed, for Gnostics, the discovery of secret knowledge was more important than faith and held the ultimate key to spiritual enlightenment.

Luke 11:52 says; “Woe to you experts in the law, because you have taken away the key to knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you have hindered those who were entering.”

Gnosticism. -. the. Search. for. secret. Knowledge. “Gnosticism. is. a. quest. for. redeeming. knowledge. and. a. quest.

Rather than attaining gnosis through a “letting go” (of ego, of attachments, of fear), the Gnostic on the journey to the Pleroma must exert tremendous will and perseverance and obtain special knowledge. The ignorant ones, those who weren’t even aware of the need for gnosis in order to be saved, are doomed to oblivion.

The biggest stumbling block of ancient Gnosticism (or at least of any dogmatic reading of it, whether ancient or modem) was the self-fulfilling alienation built into its very structure. Rather than seeing the universe at root as fundamentally benign—the common perception of the mystic suffused with divine love—the Gnostic perceived it as an enormous illusion that one must see through.

Our souls hunger for a union with the divine and for a sense of wholeness where both feminine and masculine qualities can be embraced. Sophia is still alive in our efforts to find the divine spark amidst the darkness of daily life. The Archons confront us in the form of social strictures and pressures that do not always have our best interests in mind. And the Demiurge lives on when we succumb to rigid concepts of God and religion that haven’t been confirmed by our own living experience.

Many Christians insist that being “born again” is essential for salvation, yet few seem to know what this rebirth entails. It seems to have something to do with “accepting Jesus in your heart,” but is that all?

Does it mean anything more than going to the front of the hall after a moving evangelical performance? Esoteric Christianity also stresses the need to be ‘born again,” but it sees this process as both subtler and more demanding than many believe. According to Boris Mouravieff, the “second birth” requires an enormous amount of work, “much greater than that required for example from the student from the time when he starts his elementary education until he obtains his doctorate. To understand why the ‘second birth” takes so much effort, we might begin by going back to Christ’s famous words: “Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God” (John 3:5).

The lowest level is that of the fleshly, or, as the King James Version puts it, “carnal” man, the one who is ruled by the body’s desires and aversions: ‘For whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal?” (1 Cor. 3:3).

The second level is that of the soul—the parchie, or, as we might say today, the “psychological.” The King James Version translates the Greek word prychikos as ‘natural’ (see, e.g., 1 Cor. 15:44). While this usage may seem misleading, it is less so if we regard this level as being occupied with what is naturally human—the emotions and the intellect. One of the most universal symbols for the psyche is water, an image that reflects the flowing, liquid, turbulent quality of the mind.

The third level is the spiritual (Greek, pneumatilios). The spirit is, to use a contemporary catchword, “transpersonal”: It has to do with the eternal and unchanging, with what is Far beyond mere desires, thoughts, and emotions. More profoundly, it is the true Self, that in us which at the deepest possible level says, “I am.” It is also the part that reaches toward God.

Secret knowledge, which is a meditation technique or prayer that allows one to have a direct experience of God, just as Gnostics have always maintained, but, furthermore, access to God allows one to develop to a much higher spiritual level, attaining the Holy Grail and through that, spiritual immortality. The barriers that prevent one from reaching a higher level of consciousness are a lack of self-awareness and the way the ego defends itself, being the biggest obstacle to the process one has to face. Another obstacle is the lack of a concept to grasp the meaning, and the notion of a bodymind bridged the gap between Western head centred philosophy and the secret process that allows the mental leap to become possible.

The name Gnostic means wisdom, or knowledge, and is derived from the Greek Gnosis. The members of the order claimed to be familiar with the secret doctrines of early Christianity. They interpreted the Christian Mysteries according to pagan symbolism. Their secret information and philosophic tenets they concealed from the profane and taught to a small group only of especially initiated persons.

The Christ is the first Eon or generation; from him proceed others, by syzygies or pairs, till the void be-comes pleroma or fullness. It is not easy to make a statement that will apply equally to, all the heretical gnostics, nor is it easy to say what was their precise meaning, but it is not unlikely that their ‘Eons were personified abstractions, or the intellectual and moral virtues which go to make up the perfect gnostic, or man perfected in the gnosi8 or spiritual science, and their teaching when expressed in plain language, without metaphor, and understood in re-lation to the several processes by which the gnostic is able to arrive at perfect science, was really less a ‘,surd than it would seem. They probably did not differ much, save in their symbolism, from modern transcendentalists. Their genuine successors in history are the old Alchemists, who meant by the philosopher’s stone very much what the gnos-tics meant by the means by which one attains to the rode, or _perfect science.

The Gnostic Jung

To understand being alone in the true sense, is to unlock one of the greatest mysteries of and keys to the heavens … When isolation strikes the heart, it is a sign that the soul is being brought to another test and crossroad of life. The question arises: Will the individual drop the state of consciousness that is causing the aloneness, brought on by the Divine Spirit, allowing its loving hand to caress the heart; or will he seek refuge and comfort from the ruthlessness of Spirit through the material worlds.

Each time the despair came over me, the Spirit was handing me a choice. I could choose to indulge myself in the loneliness and wallow in it, which would not have done my situation any good, or I could set my pain aside and look to what the Spirit was trying to express to me . . . all hopes of happiness seemed to be gone for ever. Then I heard its sweet melody—the sound of the flute—sharply singing in my head. Immediately, the pain and despair left me; instantly, I understood loneliness. The dull pain of isolation was caused by the tight grasp with which I held onto the things of my past, which previously provided me happiness. I had lost all material joys of that lifetime. However, by accepting the greater joys of the Spirit, I was able to accept the universal love of life—even for those who were my captors. In doing so, the fist that tightly held at my heart, loosened its grip, enabling me to become one with the Spirit. Ultimately, we face (God) alone. It is only while alone that we void ourselves of that which we would grasp and cling to, in hopes of gaining happiness. And it is only when we are empty and alone that we can open ourselves entirely to the outpouring of Spirit. When loneliness appears in its foreboding, hooded shroud, know that with it will come a new fulfilment of love and light.

Gnosticism conceived of the true god as purely transcendental, absolutely surpassing the sphere of heimarmene, the sublunar reality where dark powers rule over our bodies. The highest god does not intervene in this world by force, as the demiurge does, but by revealing secret knowledge (gnosis) to remind fallen souls of their divine identities. According to its opponents, Gnosticism connected this view of the world to a soterio-logical determinism. The Gnostics believed they were saved by nature, because of the identity of their souls with the highest god.”) As long as they were in this world, they only had to resist the power of evil that intended to harm them through the body. God was on their side, but they had to suffer the onslaughts of the demiurg until its final defeat.”

Introduction Gnosis, The Divine Redeemer, “What liberates is the knowledge of who we were, what we became; where we were, where into we have been thrown; whereto we speed, where from we are redeemed; what birth is and what rebirth.”‘

Deliverance from this material world , in other word , can come only by liberating knowledge (gnosis).

Humans are imprisoned in the material universe of fate that the archons control, though we carry within ourselves the leftover sparks of the divine and precosmic Pleroma (Fullness) that existed before the demiurgic construction com-pany took over. Human beings are thus, in essence, absolutely superior to the ecosystem—not stewards or even masters, but strangers in a strange land.

“What liberates is the knowledge of who we were, what we became; where we were, where into we have been thrown; whereto we speed, where from we are redeemed; what birth is and what rebirth.”‘ The primary polarity of Gnostic psychology is not sin and redemption, but ignorance and }gnosis, forgetting and memory, sleep and the awaken-ing of knowledge. The Gnostic sought the pure signal that overrides the noise and corrosive babel of the world—an ineffable rush tinged with the Platonic exaltation of mind, a first-person encounter with the Logos etched into the heart of the divine self within.

“Having conceived that nothing is impossible to you, consider yourself immortal and able to understand everything, all an, all learning, the temper of every living thing…. Collect in your-self all the sensations of what has been made, of fire and water, dry and wet; and be everywhere at once, on land, in the sea. in heaven; be not yet born, be in the womb, be young, old, dead, beyond death. And when you have understood all these at once—times, places, things, qualities, quantities—then you can understand god.”

On one level, this illumination penetrates to the subtlest spheres of consciousness—the call to “be not yet born” recalls the Zen koan that asks the practitioner to recall her original face, the face “before you were born.” But unlike the Zen quest, which proceeds largely by emptying the mind of its obsession with mental bric-a-brac, the budding Promethean Gnostic is here encouraged just to keep loading it up. Hermes is not told to merge with the great ineffable Oneness, but to expand the conceptual and empirical mind, the mind that knows and understands the things of this world, quantities as well as qualities, information as well as wisdom. Gnosis enables die mystic not only to know God, but to know what God knows. Even more important, this cognitive ecstasy is not characterized as something that happens to the aspirant through God’s infinite grace. but as a feat that the aspirant pro-duces through his own mystical, magical, and intellectual labor—in a word, self-divinization.

“Through [the Demiurge’s] unknowing agency the spiritual seed was implanted in the human soul and body, to be carried there as if in a womb until it had grown sufficiently to receive the Logos. The pneuma sojourns in the world in order to be pre-formed there for the final “information” through the gnosis.”

Theories of Change With God being utterly transcendent and unknowable, all the lower realms basically being corrupted (of which the human body is constructed), and the goal being a complete liberation from it all, the fundamental gnostic theory of change and way to this salvation is centered on the acquisition of “knowledge,” or gnosis. The idea here is that God sends Divine Light down to humans thereby enabling them to share in God’s existence.

Such knowledge from and of God not only liberates one from the body’s corrupting passions, but is itself the “ultimate perfection” that transforms the sou1.

In speaking about the relation between the knower and the known, Jonas writes, “There, the mind is “informed” with the forms it beholds and while it beholds (thinks) them: here, the subject is “transformed” (from “soul” to “spirit”) by the union with a reality that in truth is itself the supreme subject in the situation and strictly speaking never an object at all.”

It is, therefore, by one’s reception of Divine knowledge, that one is called, awakened, and finally liberated from all the lower realms. There are also two additional purposes of this gnosis: it gives a magical quality to make the soul impenetrable and invisible to lower gods; and to give knowledge of how one can force their passage to the higher realms.

Gnostic transformation, which is “long and endless” and often confining but also joyous is therefore rooted in one’s communion with this knowledge. This journey, however, is not considered to be made alone, especially in Christian versions of Gnosticism. A “transcendent savior” is believed to bring this “saving knowledge” from beyond these realms in which humans are imprisoned.

This savior comes to bring liberation and He must descend and “assimilate himself to the forms of cosmic existence and thereby subject himself to its conditions.

Gnostics pretty much have a singular focus when it comes to the aims of their religion. On this, Jonas asserts, “The goal of gnostic striving is the release of the “inner [person]” from the bonds of the world and [her or his] return to [her or his] native realm of light.”

It is to be “reunited with the divine substance’ ;” a breaking through and awakening from the spirit’s slumbering.309 He continues, “It is no exaggeration to say that the discovery of this transcendent inner principle in [humanity] and the supreme concern about its destiny is the very center of gnostic religion.”

Given the realm of prisons that the spirit is enclosed within, both cosmically and anthropologically, the goal is the gnostic ascent is through the concentric circles and one’s self to the beyond where God dwells.

Being a thoroughly dualistic perspective, it is through this ascent, via a series of stages, that the immanence of the spirit attains to the transcendence of God.

This attainment therefore “involves a process of gathering in, of re-collection of what has been so dispersed, and salvation aims at the restoration of the original unity.”

In short, the central spiritual formation goal of gnostic Christianity is a liberation of this imprisoned spirit into the realm of God that is utterly transcendent to and beyond all of creation.

We know that gnostic practices were important since the acquisition of unknowable knowledge of God was considered to come via “sacred and secret lore or through inner illumination,” either directly, or through a savior. Such knowledge, Jonas asserts, was not just related to gnosis, but also to the way of life that gnostics should live. On this, he writes, “On the practical side, however, it is more particularly “knowledge of the way,” namely, of the soul’s way out of the world, comprising the sacramental and magical preparations for its future ascent and the secret names and formulas that force the passage through each sphere.”

The Savior must be born in us as He was born in the world; must put off in us, (by fighting for us against our spiritual enemies,) those evils which He put oft with the maternal human; must be crucified in us to the death, or quiescence of our former life; must resuscitate in divine truth in us, and establish His kingdom of love in us, before we can be fitted for His heavenly kingdom, and before the incarnation of the Divine Human can produce in us its triumphant and eternally saving effects.

Thus shall we recover the image and likeness of God, in Jesus Christ, which can never more be effaced; the external, though distinct in degree, will be united with the internal in cone-sponding harmony, and the church immortal, which now descends from heaven, will establish its dominion with us forever.

Many whom curiosity may incite to contemplate the wonders of the new dispensation, which is gradually diffusing its light through the world, may, for a while, gladly receive the testimony in the imaginative delights of the natural mind, but none can have any part or lot in the benefits of the second advent, who do not undergo the process of the first.

We must die to self, before we can have life in the Lord; we must have genuine truth before we can have heavenly love. The Lord is the way, the truth, and the life, and every one who would participate the life, must, with heartfelt humiliation, apply to the manifested Jeho-vah as the only way which can introduce the sincere penitent to that divine truth which alone can enlighten, and to that divine love, which, in its bosom. contains eternal felicity.

By the external senses, we know this world ; but if they are disordered, they are not the mediums of correct knowledge. Through the mind only can we know a spiritual world, and only as the mind is qualified by spiritual love and thought, can we thus know it.

Thus only can we know the things of that world, as by the bodily senses only do we perceive things of this. To learn the properties of each, we must have the qualifications for each. Spirit is known only through spirit, love through love, and wisdom through wisdom ; as matter and its properties are known through material organs.

The former process is imaged and illustrated in the latter, as the spiritual world is imbodied and represented in the forms and objects of this. Because this world corresponds to that within and above it, and man possesses in his spiritual body, and in the material body which covers the spiritual body, the rudiments of both worlds, therefore he is capa-ble of knowing both worlds, of living in both, and of ascending by an orderly process from one to the other ; from a natural life to a spiritual, and from earth to heaven.

In the spiritual world there is good and there is evil, light and dark-ness; and the more perfectly man follows the light of the spiritual world, by obeying it in the love of it, the more fully are the rudiments of that world within him developed into form and energy ; and the more do they take the ordering and government of the world without.

Each, thus, becomes a more perfect medium of knowing the other. The spiritual descends more and more deeply into the nat-ural man, to arrange, purify, and regenerate it ; the natural, thus transformed and conformed, rises up and calls the spiritual blessed in ascribing the salvation to the Lord. The world without, be-comes, as it were, a mirror in which arc reflected the images of the world within. The forms and qualities of the spiritual world are thus manifested through the natural.

The content of the Gnostic teaching consists of the belief that God is radically transcendent. The God who created the world, the Demiurge, is seen as a lower deity. The highest God has nothing to do with this world, except with human beings. They are bound to him in their deepest selves, but they have forgotten this. It is the task of the Saviour to remind the human beings of their bond with God and thus of their true identity. Moreover he has to overcome the demonic powers which keep human beings imprisoned in this cosmos. For a Gnostic believer, the com-plete realization of redemption consists in the return to God after death (the journey of the soul). Already in this life believers must strive to be free of matter and its passions by following an ascetic lifestyle.

Knowledge in this manner knows where he comes from and where he is going. He knows as one who having been drunk has turned away from his drunkenness, (and) having returned to himself, has set right what are his own’ . Clement of Alexandria provides a summation of Gnostic self-understanding: ‘It is not the bath (washing) alone which makes us free, but also the knowledge: who were we? what have we become? where were we? into what place have we been cast? whither are we hastening? from what are we delivered? what is birth? what is rebirth?’ (Exc. Theod. 78.2; Foerster, Gnosis 1.230). Williams notes that most of the Sethian sources reflect a preoccupation with the question of human nature and human origins. . . . Recovery of an awareness of one's membership in this divine family belongs to the essence of salvation in Sethian traditions' (Sethianism’).

Experience provides a special kind of knowledge that is alive and profound. It does not depend upon books or outside authority of any kind. When one has experienced, one knows. The Greek word Gnosis refers to this special, experiential knowledge, especially in regards to the fundamentals truths of existence. Real Gnosis comes from the conscious experience of the Truth of life, death, and all the mysteries that surround us. By “conscious experience” is meant a form of active, awakened perception that penetrates far more than what is physical.

The consciousness—when awakened—can perceive other dimensions. It is here that real Gnosis begins to bloom in the mind and heart, revealing the truth to the soul. This kind of experience is possible for anyone. It does not matter what one believes, or where one comes from. You can be devoutly religious or deeply independent. yet acquire the personal experience of that which exists beyond the physical senses. Furthermore. it is not necessary to belong to any group or promise anything to anyone. And, even more scandalous, you do not have to pay anyone any money. Despite the outrageous demands of thousands of “spiritual” groups and teachers, you can experience and know the truth even if financially poor. Real Gnosis is for anyone who is willing to make the effort in themselves.

In order to arrive at the experience of the truth. there are required steps. Everything in nature works according to laws, and not according to our convenience. This is where most people become diverted from the truth: the truth does not comfort our illusions or accommodate our attachments. Therefore, due to fear and the desire for security, most people avoid the troth. preferring instead to remain comforted by their personal beliefs. even if they are illusions. Yet, for the one who is brave enough to face their own self-deception. the reality of Gnosis is quick to be seen. And. for the one who is brave enough to confront and change their own inner contradictions and mistakes. Gnosis—the knowledge that emerges from that inner investigation—becomes an illuminating light and a nourishing medicine.

By establishing a degree of stability in our mind, our life also stabilizes. Then, we are in a position to prepare ourselves to know the facts of existence: facts that are sometimes disturbing, sometimes painful, and almost always what we least expected. Yet, facts are facts, and once known, they become steps towards greater knowledge.

Very simply, if we am unhappy, only we know that and experience that kind of suffering; it is self-produced and self-experienced. If unhappiness is an internal experience, then happiness must also be internal. Therefore, first we have to face the fact of our unhappiness. Then we need to find the cause of unhappiness and exchange it for a cause for happiness. The only way to do this is by knowing ourselves in depth.

We need self-knowledge. Knowledge is power, and there is no power greater than knowledge of oneself. The power to change resides entirely in self-knowledge. Where we are lacking self-knowledge, we are lacking power to change. Thus, if we feel powerless in some area of our life, we need to acquire knowledge of that area, and in this book are the initial steps towards revolutionizing that situation.

The Oracle of Delphi stated: “Man, know thyself, and thou shalt know the universe and it’s Gods!”

Self-knowledge is the key to the knowledge of everything that exists, for by understanding who we truly are inside, we can then understand the experience of others, where we have all come from, and where we are going. We can only acquire this kind of knowledge on our own, by our own efforts, and in our own experience. In this way, there is no need to believe or theorize, for having experienced the truth, we know.

First Degree of Introduction to Gnosis

This is the introductory degree to the Gnostic philosophical studies or external degrees of Gnosis. It is natural that all students will begin with this degree and eventually continue with the first, second, third degrees, etc. One should keep in mind that these are not the esoteric Gnostic degrees. The esoteric Gnostic degrees, which are the authentic ones, cannot be revealed by anyone who has received them; this is forbidden.

Whoever says: “I have so many degrees, so many Initiations,” is being dishonest. If a person wants to become an engineer, lawyer, doctor, etc. he has to prepare himself for it. That person will go to school and study a great deal. After he has a good theoretical basis in the field he studied, he will begin to practice what he has learned.

Practice brings about perfection. The great sages, professionals, scientists, etc. have not merely had a theoretical knowledge of their respective fields of study, but have also put this knowledge to practice.

Theory by itself cannot bring about anything except an intellectual enjoyment on the part of those who understand it. Study these lessons, and study them with true incentive, with the desire to learn, with the desire of understanding the superior knowledge. But remember that you need to put into practice what you learn if you want to achieve the perfection of the work.

It is necessary to be successful in life. If you want to be successful. you should begin by being sincere with yourself; recognize your own errors. When we recognize our errors. we are on the path to correcting than.

Everyone who corrects his own errors is inevitably successful. The businessman who daily blames others for his own failures and never recognizes his own errors will not be successful. Remember that the greatest criminals consider themselves to be saints. If we visit a penitentiary we will prove to ourselves that none of the criminals consider themselves guilty. Almost all of them say to themselves. I am innocent’ Don’t make the same mistake: have the courage to recognize your own errors. Thus will you escape greater evils. Whoever recognizes his own errors can make a happy home.

The politician, scientist. philosopher, and the religious person. etc. that comes to recognize his mistakes can coma them and be successful in life. If you want to triumph in life. don’t criticize anyone. Whoever unitizes another person is a weakling. The one who critkizes himscl revery moment is a giant.

Criticism is useless because it hurts the pride of others and provokes the resistance of the victim. who then seeks to justify himself. Criticism provokes an inevitable reaction against its maker. If you want to truly triumph in life, listen to this advice: do not criticize anyone. The man or woman who knows how to live without criticizing anyone does not provoke resistance nor reactions on the part of his fellowmen. and consequently creates an atmosphere of success and progress.

On the other hand, he who criticizes others has many enemies. We have to remember that human beings are full of pride and vanity, and this vanity inherent in them produces a reaction (resentment. hate. etc.) that is directed towards the one who criticizes them. He who wants to comet others should best begin by correcting himself.

This gives better results and is kss dangerous. The world is full of neurasthenic persons. The neurasthenic type is a faultfinder. irritable. and intolerable. There are many causes of neurasthenia: impatience, anger, egotism. arrogance. etc. A mediator exists between the Spirit and the body: the nervous system. Take care of your nervous system. When your nervous system is irritated by something that exhausts you, it is better to flee from it. Work intensely but with moderation.

Remember that excessive work produces fatigue. If you do not pay attention to fatigue. if you continue with excessive work, then fatigue is replaced with stress. When stress turns morbid, it becomes neurasthenia. It is necessary. to alternate work with pleasant rest so as to avoid the danger of falling into neurasthenia.

Every employer who wants to succeed should be careful of not falling into neurasthenia. The neurasthenic employer criticizes everything and becomes unbearable. The neurasthenic despises patience and as employer becomes the executioner of his employees. Workers who must work under the orders of a neurasthenic and fault-fmding employer end up hating the job and the employer. No discontented worker works with pleasure. Many times enterprises fail because the workers are discontented, dissatisfied, and do not work efficiently in such circumstances.

The neurasthenic, as worker or office employee, becomes rebellious and ends up being fired from his job. Every neurasthenic worker seeks any occasion to criticize his employer. Every employer has pride and vanity and it is obvious that he feels offended when his employees criticize him. The worker who lives criticizing his employer ends up losing his job. Take care of your nervous system. Work moderately. Enjoy yourself healthily. Do not criticize anyone. Tiy to see the best in all human beings.

According to the Gnostics, the “secret” to knowing God lies in the Gnostic’s knowledge of himself which is achieved through the wisdom of a perfect teacher. Gnosis, however, should not be confused with the spiritual perfection sought by the contemplatives and mystics of the period.

The mystics perceived this state as a gift from God; an ability to “know” God through the opening of one’s mind and heart in prayer, followed by the acceptance of this gift of love. It is a state of “higher understanding” that goes beyond the words of Scripture, entailing a deeper understanding of the written word to the extent of attaining communion with God.

However, this knowledge of God is in some respects fundamentally different from the knowledge of the self required by the Gnostics. In Confessions, Augustine describes the ecstatic state of meditation as “the very soul grew silent to herself and by not thinking of self mounted beyond self’.

In other words, the process of attaining knowledge of God necessitates a life of asceticism, namely, a renunciation of the self, whereas for the Gnostics, it is through the agency of man that God shows His power,60 placing man and the self at the center.

For the mystics, it is the “knowledge” of God that ultimately leads to knowledge of the self, whereas the Gnostics emphasize knowledge of the self as the portal leading to knowledge of God. The distinction here is crucial as both traditions seem to aspire to a similar goal—revelation. Both gnosticism and this particular view of mysticism claim to seek an explanation for an unreadable world but while the former wishes to arouse and articulate a dormant knowledge.

In other words, though there are similarities and their sources at time converge, there are clear-cut differences between the mystics and the gnostics. The “traditional” mystics acquire their divine vision through ar absence of images and an obliteration of the self. And while the mystics do not necessarily require mediator in their process of contemplation, the gnostic requires the heir of the mediator to awaken him from his worldly induced stupor in order to reunite with himself and vicariously with God.

Moreover, for the mystic the process of ascension as well as the final vision and union with God lead to an external revelation that ironically makes its presence known through its absence. That is, by forgetting the material state, by forgetting the self, revelation may be achieved. For the gnostic, it is an internal achievement culminating in the ultimate discarding of the body. The process entails foregrounding a form of knowledge that was consciously absent into conscious presence (i.e., a remembrance of the self), which would then lead to salvation. In this manner, the dream vision, as the locus of said knowledge via its liminality, enables the desconstrucive structure of centralizing the margins in the sense that it seeks to reveal a heretofore hidden Truth. The Gnostic is in constant search for this elusive self.

‘To ascend to God is to enter into oneself, and not only to enter the self, but in an ineffable way to pass through oneself into the interior depths’.

The Gnostics ‘ gnosis was a type of secret information , something never before revealed and never to be revealed . It was a saving knowledge concerning the self ; it was a form of self – knowledge , “ an intricate self – understanding of who they were, how they came to be here, where they came from and how they could return.”

Though scholars tend to differ among themselves as to what the Gnostics actually meant by knowledge. they generally agree what the Gnostics did not mean. They did not mean the absence of ignorance. They did not connote general knowledge, a general fund of facts, such as those that generate entertainment with Jeopardy or Trivial Pursuit. This gnosis had nothing to do with rational knowledge or with philosophical reasoning and had nothing to do with technical know-how or philosophical wisdom.

Though their writings and texts were important to them, these “scriptures” did not, in and of themselves, impart the knowledge that saves. The Gnostics’ posh was a type of secret information, something never before revealed and never to be revealed. It was a saving knowledge concerning the self; it was a form of self-knowledge, “an intricate self-understanding of who they were, how they came to be here, where they came from and how they could return.”

Elaine Pagels translates Gnosis as “insight.” a term suggesting a kind of psycho-logical self-knowledge or a self-awareness that is intuitively attained.’ She cites the Gnostic teacher Monoimus: “Abandon the search for God and the creation and the other matters of a similar sort. Look for him by taking yourself as a starting point. Learn who it is within you who makes everything his own and says ‘My God, my mind, my thought, my soul, my body.’ Learn the sources of sorrow, joy, love, hate … if you carefully investigate these matters you will find him in yourself.”‘ Other examples abound in Gnostic literature: “I tell you this that you may know yourself”‘; and “Everyone who seeks the truth from true wisdom will make himself wings so as to fly, fleeing the lust that scorches the spirits of men.”

In the Gospel of Truth, Gnostic scholar Pheme Perkins notes how salvation, particularly in the writer’s interpretation of the sheep parabks and images, is associ-ated with possession of insight. She elaborates: “For the Valentinian author of Gospel of Tru th, for the author of Dialogueof:he Savior, as well as for the compiler of the Coptic Gospel of Thomas, understanding the true teaching of the Savior is the key to salvation.

For Gnostic believers the clue to the quest for immortality lay in the self-knowledge, or ‘insight,” that comes to one only when the Kingdom of God is discovered within. One cannot discover the spirit unless one first possesses the spirit.” ‘

The center of gravity of this system is individual salvation. For the Gnos-tics, personal knowledge rather than behavior, is the focus of salvation. This is particularly demonstrated in the Gospel of Thomas where poverty is associated with those who dwell in the world without knowledge of wisdom and not a lack of material goods.” However, this knowledge was only for an elite few, those who were gnostic or, as Ehrman so aptly phrased it, “in the know.”” This knowledge was not for everyone and not available to everyone:

“Blessed are the solitary and elect, for you will find the kingdom. For you are from it and to it you will return.”

This secret knowledge was hidden from the populace and available only to those who were capable of receiving and understanding it. Since the material world was evil, this knowledge could not come from the world or from humans.

This saving knowledge could come only from outside the material world. It could come only from God.” To sum up, this saving knowledge came from God and only to certain elite individuals who were capable of grasping its esoteric content. This is, however, an oversimplification.

There is much more to Gnosticism, which will be explained later. But in essence, the key concept is Gnosticism’s saving knowledge available only to those capable of understanding. Those not possessing this saving knowl-edge arc not saved, thus, they arc damned. This understanding of salvation polarizes. It creates knowers versus unknowers, saved versus unsaved, a mindset of exclusion versus one of inclusion.

Salvation is based upon one’s understanding of knowledge (gnosis), how it came to earth, to whom it came, and who was qualified to receive it and pass it on. Only those with Gnostic credentials were candidates. How could this be right? How could this knowledge be accessible only to cer-tain special individuals? If it possessed the capacity to save, why could it not save more people? Would not a God of creation want more people saved? The answer requires analysis of other Gnostic principles.

GNOSTIC WORLDVIEW AND METAPHYSICAL DUALISM

For Gnostics, reality was composed of two basic elements: physical (material or corporeal) and spiritual. There was no middle ground. Spirit was everything; any-thing material or physical was unessential. Any substance that was not spiritual was matter and therefore evil. This was called dualism. Dualism leads inevitably to more than one god.’6 The Gnostic universe from the beginning was depressing. Creation was flawed: “The cosmos is an abortion; humanity, in the fleshly sense, along with all mate-riality, is a mistake.” The world was flawed because it was flawed when it was created: “For the Gnostic Christians, the material world itself was part and parcel of the human tragedy.” Like Buddhists, Gnostics portrayed human life as one filled with suffering and most of it comes from the defective cosmos. People are responsible for some of the suffering, but most of it comes from the original defects in an imperfect cosmos.

According to Gnostic wisdom, these gnostikoi have been elected because they are worthy of election. Their divine spark was prepared for enlightenment, or Gnosis, which meant liberation. Gnostic Christians, for example, considered the teachings of Jesus reserved only for the elect, or pneumatics: “Only the pneumatics, the Gnostics themselves, could truly understand the revelation from God; on the basis of that revelatory knowledge, they were destined to escape the material world. . . . The writings of Jesus’ own Apostles conveyed secret revelations not accessible to the literal minded psychics of the church. . . . Only true Knowers could unravel the meanings embedded in seemingly unrelated details of the text, meanings that comprised the secret teachings of the Gnostic system.” Due to their elevated spiritual status, the pneumatics engaged in a more flexible, sym-bolic interpretation of scripture. This form of spiritual teaching led to multiple

THE BASIC TENETS OF GNOSTICISM

interpretations, all of which seems incongruent with their inflexible understand-ing on salvation.

Salvation from sin, original or otherwise, was not a goal of Gnosticism. Their goal was release from unconsciousness and ignorance, or incomprehension. Humans who possess the divine spark can find their freedom only in learning of its source, how it came to be entrapped in the material world, and how it can escape to return to its original realm. This important theme of gnosis takes us back to the beginning of our search. Gnosis is the liberating knowledge that enables release from the material evil world. This knowledge was “special” and qualitatively dif-ferent from, and transcendent over, the simple faith of the Church. But like the faith of the Church, it was a saving knowledge; and, like the faith of the Church, it required a savior. For the later discussion on Gnosticism and Fundamentalism, it is significant to note that salvation was potential in everyone. It was not vicari-ous, but individual. Individuals saved themselves.

DIVINE REDEEMER

Some scholars assert that the most important principle Gnosticism derived from Christianity was its core idea of redemption.” There are strong arguments to support this. However, by their own dualistic premise (spirit is good, matter is evil), anything material is alien to a supreme God. Thus, by default, Gnostics automatically dismiss any concept of incarnation.” Because flesh was inherently evil, their divine Christ could never come “in the flesh.” It is important that this contradiction be fully grasped. If they do not become incarnate, born in the flesh, can a God or Redeemer save? The Gnostics answer is the Redeemer. This Redeemer was not flesh but took on the “appearance” of flesh. To ordinary senses he looked real, seemed tangible flesh and blood. But Gnostics with the divine spark, with elevated insight, saw pure pristine spirit. Those without the spark saw a physical appearance, a sem-blance or dokais (Greek for “appearance”), from which we get Docetism, an early form of Gnosticism that alarmed the early Church fathers.°

The Gnostic Redeemer was a divine being who came into the world to save his entrapped subjects. It was Christ himself, but what kind of Christ? It was not a real Christ. So how could the divine Redeemer come into the world and NOT be human. Gnostic Christians understood how this could happen in basically two different ways.’ The first was the docetic view previously introduced. Some scholars 42 con-sider the letters oflohn to be an attack on this form of Gnosticism.

To Gnostics, Christ represented only an appearance of being human. Not surprisingly, St. Paul became one of the Gnostic sources of support and they would often quote him. In Romans, for example, it states that Christ came “in the likeness of sinful flesh” (8:3). There were other aspects of Paul’s letters, such as his animosity toward the law that Gnostics embraced. An alternative view for Gnostics of God becoming human without actually becoming flesh was called the Separationist position.

The man, Jesus, was a real flesh-and-blood person. Yet, another heavenly being inhabited Jesus’ body for a period of time. This was the heavenly, divine Christ that entered Jesus’s body at his baptism (the dove descending from heaven) but departed prior to his death. According to this theory, Christ did not suffer. Pain and death are foreign to Gnostic thinking. Following his death, the heavenly Christ returned and resur-rected the earthly, human Christ, empowering him to spread the gnosis that his disciples and others would need for the heavenward journey home. Some Gnos-tics who held this theory had a particular fondness for the Gospel According to Mark.

This evangelist depicts Jesus’s ministry beginning with the reception of the Holy Spirit at his baptism and ending on the cross with his words: “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?”(Mark 15:34). Considered by Gnostics to be Jesus’s last words, their interpretation is unmistakable. The divine spirit departed his physical body. The spiritual Christ, who could receive no physical pain, would escape crucifixion.

Gnosis means knowledge, and it is knowledge that saves. For Gnostics, salva-tion lies in discovering the truth of their identity, their origin, how they came to this earth, and how they can return to the divine heavenly realm, which is their ultimate destination and goal. This is the knowledge, the truth that leads to salva-tion. But it is grasped by only an elite few who are “in the know.” Gnostic cosmogony, or worldview, is dualistic.

Reality is composed of spirit and matter. Spirit is good. Matter is evil. Because there is evil in the world, it could not have been created by the one True Divinity, or God. Therefore, evil came about through a catastrophic cosmic disaster. As a result, the spirit became trapped in the evil, material world.

In order for this spirit, represented as divine sparks in certain humans, to return to its heavenly divine realm it must acquire saving knowledge. This saving knowledge comes from a divine redeemer. This divine redeemer came into the world to save the lost sparks of the spirit. So far, all of this sounds vaguely Christian.

Then comes the significant fac-tor, or hermeneutical key, that differentiates Gnosticism from Christianity: flesh is evil; therefore, the Gnostic redeemer is all spirit and never became flesh. For Christians, “the word became flesh.” For Gnostics, the word became spirit. No flesh was involved.

From the Christian perspective, the Gnostic divine redeemer was impotent. He (or she) lacked humanity. Gnostic Christians were active in Christian Churches but did not believe all Christians would be saved, primarily because they did not have access to the saving knowledge. Because many belonged to the Church, and because of their insistence that the one true spiritual God could not have been human, Gnosticism posed a very real and major threat to the existence of the young struggling Church. Their ascetic ethic was another serious challenge.

The word apocalypse (from the Greek apokalypsis) means “unveiling” or “revealing.”‘ Apocalyptic, therefore, is esoteric revealed wisdom, and the knowledge it reveals has an immediate relation to redemption. The notion of immediacy relates to mysticism.

The eschatological (end of time) slant the Gnostics gave it included a pronounced dualistic-pessimistic world, one no longer governed by God but by his enemy, the devil and his angelic powers. The world and history were left on an automatic course. Salvation from this material entrapment was achieved by gnosis. “The knowledge of God’s mysteries guarantees salvation; knowledge and cognition, and redemption are closely connected.” This knowledge, or wisdom, was accessible only to the initiated … the saved.

How to Think Like a Gnostic. Introduction Knowledge. Although human beings have a divine origin, they live as “strangers” in this world and are absolutely separated from the divine world.

Although human beings have a divine origin, they live as “strangers” in this world and are absolutely separated from the divine world.

When the divine is reduced to such universal principles, God is wrongfully immanentized and humanized.

The relation between the divine and the human is essentially one of crisis, as the idea of transcendence questions by its very nature the legitimacy of immanent being and mere human life. But precisely by being human, one always fails to reach the divine transcendence from which one is separated by a deep “abyss.”

The aim of Gnosticism is to liberate the pneuma from its material, delusional prison and to reunite it with the Deity. The Archons seek to obstruct this liberation and to maintain their dominion. The tyrannical rule of the Archons is called heimarmene, which manifests itself through natural law, through human governments, institutions, laws, and conventions.

The spiritual interpretation is front and center : the goal of alchemy is the liberation of the spiritual Adam from the bonds of carnality imposed upon Him by the rulers of the sublunary world, the archons.

This ignorance is fostered in human nature by the influence of the false creator and his Archons , who together are intent upon keeping men and women ignorant of their true nature and destiny. Anything that causes us to remain attached to earthly things serves to keep us in enslavement to these lower cosmic rulers.

Humans are generally ignorant of the divine spark resident within them. This ignorance is t, fostered in by the influence of the false creator and his, who together are intent upon keeping men and women ignorant of their true nature and destiny. Anything that causes us to remain attached to earthly things serves to keep us in enslavement to these lower cosmic rulers. Death releases the divine spark from its lowly prison, but if there has not been a substantial work of Gnosis undertaken by the soul prior to death, it becomes likely that the divine spark will be hurled back into the pangs and slavery of the physical world.

Ecstatic Spirituality

The third type of spirituality that surfaces widely in the ancient Mediterranean is ecstatic spirituality. It points to an ecstatic or mystical relationship with God. So we should consider both the words ekstasis, which signals in Greek disassociation or out-of-body experience, and mystis, which indicates someone who has been initiated into the divine secret mysteria (mysteries).

Behind this is the Greek word ma, which means to “close” or “shut” the lips or eyes. It points to an understanding of the divine as something hidden that must be revealed to the ignorant human. This form of spirituality is built on the premise that the god and the human are vastly different and separate in two ways. First, the human is mortal, whereas the gods are immortal.

This means that humans are unlike the gods in their essential being. Second, the dwelling place of the gods is far removed from the human, or is cloistered in a separate space, so that a chasm exists between the two worlds. It is an abyss that is intended to keep the god and the human separate, in multiworlds of their own. The gods are hidden in a shrouded, divine world, beyond the human locale, in a place where humans cannot go. The gods are utterly Other in the otherworld, according to this spiritual perspective.

This difference means that the gods cannot be comprehended by the human being. The natural human mind, being utterly different from the mind of the gods, cannot conceive of the gods, who are ultimately Other.

They are a mystery beyond what the mortal human mind is capable of comprehending. There are no words in human language that even begin to circumscribe the gods. To the mystic, the gods are Incomprehensible and ineffable. what we can know about the gods is that they are hidden, a mystery that remains unsolved.

One might think, then, that type of spirituality is an agnostic orientation. We cannot know anything about the gods; so, end of story. But that is not the case. In fact, the opposite is true: ecstatic spirituality encourages humans to seek knowledge of the gods through two avenues.

The first avenue is human discernment, when we try to read the signs that the gods leave for us in the natural world; for example, by studying the skies or the entrails of sacrificed animals. We might learn the plans or secrets of the gods from a divine figure who crosses over into our world from the othenvorld to tell us what the gods desire.

This figure might be an angel like Michael, with a revelation In hand, or a god like Hermes, with some divine wisdom to share. It might come from a human prophet like Jeremiah, who is inspired by God’s spirit to speak on behalf of God, to set the community straight about exactly what kind of fidelity God requires. Or It might come from a seer like the priest Ezekiel, who is ravished by an apparition of God in a visible shape and is roused to tell about it. It might come in the form of dreams, such as Daniel describes, which require proper interpretation by religious experts to unravel God’s messages.

The second avenue is more traumatic because it involves trying to transmute the human being into a creature divine enough to enter the otherworld and communicate directly with the gods. This transmutation process relies on peculiar rituals that ecstatics develop to raze the human body and make it into a new creature capable of seeking the gods and venturing across the chasm into the otherworld to discover their will. Ultimately, the ecstatics hoped to learn the will of the gods beyond any doubt.

Short sunnerize: Gnosticism say humans need knowledge to separate, escape or liberate themselves from the abyss, liberate the spark of life trapped within matter. Other say therfore they know to understand “Alchemy” to be able to transform their Being to a new Spiritual Being of Light, and they need to raise their inner vibrations through raising their Kundalini, and in the end they will recieve the hidden white stone, or may even find the Philosopher´s Stone.

⦁ Learn Gnosticicm
⦁ Learn Alchemy
⦁ Release the Kundalini Energy in the spine
⦁ Seek total enlightment
⦁ in the end they will find or develop the Philosopher´s Stone

According to the Gnostics, the creation of the world was the result of a cosmic catastrophe. In overreaching herself, she fell from the world of the divine, becoming separated from the other divinities and her own consort.

The Philosopher´s Stone may be created by a process, and the stone may actually be hidden within the thousend petal lotus at the crown chakra. When this flower explode the Philosopher´s Stone is both created and found.

The prima materia (root chakra and start of Kundalini) is the beginning of the opus. At the end of it stands the lapis, which is Latin for “stone:” Once again, we are not really sure just what this stone was which alchemy put such great store by. Sometimes the lapis is called gold, but alchemical texts are forever stating that their gold is not ordinary gold. The mysterious lapis, which the alchemist attempted to release from the confusing matrix of the prima materia, is equated with all sorts of extraordinary things. It is sometimes called the Philosophers’ Stone, sometimes the Garden of the Philosophers, sometimes a rose or a lotus flower, sometimes a diamond. It is equated with Christ.

The alchemists believed the lapis to be immortal and imperishable; and they also believed that it had a catalytic effect on the world around it. In other words, if the alchemist could produce the lapis, the lapis would transform other base substances simply by being what it was. This is the same as the Chinese idea of being in Tao. The lapis reproduces itself, and has a permanent and ever-extending effect on life. So there is something about this inner authority on a psychological level which gives an individual a profound effect on the environment, not because he or she is struggling to achieve power or has arrived at a state of spiritual perfection, but because somehow that core of self acts as a trigger on the psyches of other people. Then we say a person has “mana,” some quality of inner authenticity and wholeness which affects others very powerfully.

The fourth step is a jump. You remain silent, just like a rock. In that moment of silence and stoppage, energy will be there—so much you cannot hold it; it will have to explode. And it will move from the sex center upwards. You will feel as it moves upwards you will fell a transformation, a change. You are not the same; moment to moment something else is coming into being. When this energy touches the head center, the last center, sahasrar, Hindus have said it is as if a lotus of one thousand petals has opened suddenly. You are filled with benediction, bliss, beatitude.

The chakra at the top of the head is known as the thousand-petalled lotus because of the thousand chambers or petals it contains, which resemble a water lily or lotus when it opens. Each of these is connected to an aspect of God.

Try to realize that you are no more ordinary human beings. You have crossed the bondage and now you are not even in the Sahasrara. You are beyond it. Sahasrara is the limbic area and this limbic area is closed like a lotus. When you get your Kundalini entering into it, then this lotus opens…. These petals are nothing but nerves which are en-lightened and they look like flames. But these flames are not with any heat…. They are extremely cooling, soothing, beautifully burning.

So when this Sahasrara lotus opens, then the Kundalini pierces through your fontanel and you get your Realization. This is what has happened to you. Now the only thing is to keep this lotus open and there where we fail sometimes because still there are some lingering human feelings within us.

Your conscious mind feels that integration within you. The rationality which is separated from the heart becomes one with the heart. It becomes one with your attention. Wherever your attention goes, you act in a collective way. All the activities of your attention are blessed. The attention itself is effective.

This is the door or gate.

Padma is a Sanskrit term meaning lotus (flower) . The lotus symbolizes what all humans can ultimately achieve , enlightenment . Enlightenment then is the lotus flower that raises itself above an ordinary world

The jewel in the lotus and the Philosopher ‘ s Stone both represent spiritual perfection.

In Gnosticism, to begin with, the soul has to escape from the Archons who at every stage try to block its way upward.

Salvation is a developmental process. Those eligible to aspire to gnosis , or intuitive awareness of the structures of reality, can only escape the hard world through an arduous change of consciousness.

Each was under the sway of its own ruler or “ archon. ” These rulers were originally the heavenly bodies themselves , upon whose supposed sway over mortal destinies the whole trade of the astrologer was founded, but they resembled … In any case the only way of escape lay in the possession of Gnosis or knowledge.

Humans are unfortunately caught in the middle of this cosmic drama with the light attempting to reclaim its lost sparks and the darkness trying to enslave the sparks. What all of this entails for free will is that only two groups: the offspring of Seth or of the true light, and the “psychical,” have any free will.

The Primal Man was freed from the hellish substance by the Living Spirit who descended and extended his right hand

The final goal of redemption is the liberation of the Gnostic from his entanglement in earthly appetites

The Gnostic systems is a dualistic manner of thought: the quali-tative distinction between God and the world, the great chasm between the divine world and matter. This is what made it necessary to develop a doctrine of how the world came into being. Some elements of the divine world became separated from the

nktipavitc. They sink like sparks of light through the world of the aeons, until they come to the material world in which they are held prisoner. The world came into being by the uniting of ail and the divine substance. In this way “Adam” was not only the first human being but he represents humanity as such as a part of the cosmos, captured within the world of matter, subject to mor-tality, enslaved by the powers of death, oriented toward a freedom that could only come from beyond. The redemptive drama corresponds to this cosmology: the heavenly redeemer descends from the divine pleroma into the cosmos, brings gnosis to fallen humanity, thereby liberating the light sparks held captive in matter, and leads them through the hostile aeons {archon) back to the heavenly world.

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