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The Once and Future Wisdom Gospel of Thomas

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posted on Aug, 11 2012 @ 04:45 PM
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“Yes, you have found the inherent problem of Thomas [ I disagree] -- it includes both authentic statements of Jesus (in what may well be an earlier, more accurate portrayal of what he said,) along with statements that he most definitely did NOT say, because they reflect post-Valentinus Gnosticism,”
adjensen
I am glad that you agree that Gnosticism did preach God’s omnipresence.
It is your contention that Gnostic ideas did not exist at Christ’s time. Many scholars disagree. However, your above argument is circular.
1. Gnostic ideas did not exist at Christ’s time.
2. This particular scripture is Gnostic
3. Therefore, it did not exist at Christ’s time. *
4. Because Gnostic ideas did not exist at Christ’s time.

*Or at least contemporaneous with the New Testament.





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posted on Aug, 11 2012 @ 08:34 PM
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Originally posted by wittgenstein
“Yes, you have found the inherent problem of Thomas [ I disagree] -- it includes both authentic statements of Jesus (in what may well be an earlier, more accurate portrayal of what he said,) along with statements that he most definitely did NOT say, because they reflect post-Valentinus Gnosticism,”
adjensen
I am glad that you agree that Gnosticism did preach God’s omnipresence.


No, sorry, you're misunderstanding me. Omnipresence is a Jewish idea, not Gnostics. The Gnostics didn't see their gods in the same way as the Jews saw God. For the most part, the Gnostic deities were closer to traditional deities, such as the Roman or Greek gods, with their highest being an incomprehensible god, who had nothing to do with our reality.


It is your contention that Gnostic ideas did not exist at Christ’s time. Many scholars disagree. However, your above argument is circular.
1. Gnostic ideas did not exist at Christ’s time.
2. This particular scripture is Gnostic
3. Therefore, it did not exist at Christ’s time. *
4. Because Gnostic ideas did not exist at Christ’s time.


No, you are not understanding me (and that argument isn't circular, because, while step 4 is a restatement of step 1, it doesn't arise from step 3.)

Yes, Gnostic ideas existed in the time of Christ -- the Gnostics had been around for a couple of hundred years. However, this particular brand of Gnosticism did not, because we know when it started, with the Christian heretic Valentinus around the year 150.



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 07:38 AM
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“No, sorry, you're misunderstanding me. Omnipresence is a Jewish idea, not Gnostics.”
Adjensen
Then how do you explain the quotes I gave from Thomas.


“(and that argument isn't circular, because, while step 4 is a restatement of step 1, it doesn't arise from step 3.)”
Adjensen
Your argument is circular. You are basing your assumption (that the Gospel of Thomas is not authentic because it is much much later then Christ’s time, which in itself is contentious) on your premise that Gnosticism ( or in particular, Christian Gnosticism) is much much later then Christ’s time.
I have shown many Gnostic ideas in the New Testament. Show me that the Bible was mistranslated. I would ask for evidence that there were no Christian Gnostic ideas at Christ’s time but that would be asking you to prove a negative.


“For the most part, the Gnostic deities were closer to traditional deities, such as the Roman or Greek gods, with their highest being an incomprehensible god, who had nothing to do with our reality.”
Adjensen
Actually, the Constantine Christian’s * (my label for the Constantine heresy that took over Christianity by force, murder, torture etc) god is far more anthropomorphic then the Gnostic god.


“because we know when it started, with the Christian heretic Valentinus around the year 150.”
Adjensen
Can you show any evidence that Valentinus (or a follower of Valentinus ) wrote the gospel of Thomas.


* He endorsed it and made it dominate Christianity. I am not saying Constantine wrote the gospels or anything like that. He wanted all the gospels about the kingdom of God being found within OUT! However, some passages made it in ( Luke 17:21 )

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posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 08:21 AM
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“For the most part, the Gnostic deities were closer to traditional deities, such as the Roman or Greek gods”
adjensen
The problem with modern interpretations of the Bible and Gnostic beliefs is that they are too literal. Fundamentalism (ironically) is the result of en.wikipedia.org... and therefore is the opposite of spirituality. (Note that I am not against science) There are areas that a quantitative en.wikipedia.org... paradigm is unsuitable.
Spirituality is en.wikipedia.org... .
Spirit plato.stanford.edu... and the infinite www.youtube.com... are unquantifiable!
Unfortunately, many modern scholars take a en.wikipedia.org... approach to scripture.
Many have no clue as to what those scriptures mean. For example (and yes this is outside Gnostic tradition) en.wikipedia.org... is ridiculed as an absurd God (many arms etc). However, the image is obviously a metaphor.
en.wikipedia.org...
en.wikipedia.org...

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posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 08:42 AM
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One must also remember that the 4 gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) were written decades later .
edit on 12-8-2012 by wittgenstein because: (no reason given)

“The dedicatory preface of the Gospel of Luke testifies already to the existence of several "accounts" of the life of Jesus by the time of its composition…The majority view today is that Mark is the first gospel, with Matthew and Luke borrowing passages both from that gospel and from at least one other common source, lost to history, termed by scholars 'Q'
FROM
en.wikipedia.org...
en.wikipedia.org...

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posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 09:19 AM
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“Matthew probably originated in a Jewish-Christian community in Roman Syria towards the end of the first century A.D.[1] The anonymous author probably drew on a number of sources besides his own experiences, including the Gospel of Mark, the sayings collection known as the Q source, and material unique to his own community.”
FROM
en.wikipedia.org...

“The Gospel According to Mark does not name its author. A tradition arising in the 2nd century ascribes it to Mark the Evangelist (also known as John Mark), the companion of Peter, on whose memories it is supposedly based, but the author's use of varied sources tells against the traditional account and according to the majority view the author is unknown. The gospel was written in Greek shortly after the destruction of the Second Temple in AD 70, possibly in Syria.”
FROM
en.wikipedia.org...

“Most modern critical scholarship concludes that Luke used the Gospel of Mark for his chronology and a hypothetical sayings source Q document for many of Jesus' teachings. Luke may also have drawn from independent written records.[10] Traditional Christian scholarship has dated the composition of the gospel to the early 60s,[11][12] while higher criticism dates it to the later decades of the 1st century.[13][14] While the traditional view that Paul's companion Luke authored the gospel is still often put forward, a number of possible contradictions between Acts and Paul's letters lead many scholars to dispute this account.[15][16] According to Raymond E. Brown, it is not impossible that Luke was the author.[17] According to some, the author is unknown.[7]”
FROM
en.wikipedia.org...-Harris_Gospels-12

“The gospel was apparently written near the end of the 1st century.[41][42] Bart Ehrman argues that there are differences in the composition of the Greek within the Gospel, such as breaks and inconsistencies in sequence, repetitions in the discourse, as well as passages that he believes clearly do not belong to their context, and believes that these suggest redaction.[43]”
FROM
en.wikipedia.org...

So, the 4 Gospels were written decades later and not by eyewitnesses, They are en.wikipedia.org... !!



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 01:22 PM
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reply to post by wittgenstein
 


Hi Wittgenstein,

I was reading all your excellent responses here and it occurred to me that you and some others who seemed to like Gospel of Thomas might find this author very interesting. His name is William Samuel and he was teaching some very metaphysical and mystical stuff back in the 1960's to the 1990's. He wrote some great books---all of them still available on Amazon.

You can find a lot of free reading on his website; www.williamsamuel.com

Here is a short excerpt from his last book written in 1986:

Truth, however it is expressed-whether it is the physics of the world or the jargon of the mystic-contains layer upon layer of meaning, addressing every human condition and state of comprehension. Consider David's Twenty-Third Psalm. His words "I shall not want" mean something to the trusting child, to the fearful heart of the soldier, to the anguished lover, the worried business man, the invalid, the mother and father. It is a meaningful statement to the aging heart of one grown weary of the world or to any human condition one might imagine. Isn't that true? If those four words can mean so much to so many, is it any wonder that some meanings may elude us for the moment?
-----------------

One of the grandest gifts I could give the reader is to introduce two small volumes: The Gospel According To Thomas and LaoTse's Tao Te Ching. You may be familiar with them already. If not, you will enjoy them mightily.

The Thomas "sayings of Jesus" came into my studies around 1958 when they were first published in English. They came ringing a Hallelujah Chorus of bells within me, confirming my own insights and intuitions of many years, just as the Tao Te Ching had done earlier. Now, these years later, the authenticity and antiquity of "Thomas" is an established fact recognized by scholars the world around, and I am not the only one to deduce that both men are making essentially the same subjective statement-and addressing the innocent, guiltless Child within us all.

These two books require a reading from a "subjective" point of view wherein they make a consistent metaphysics. Neither book can be comprehended by the Western set of mind that views "things" as separate objects "out there" in the world.

If the reader should find unfamiliar quotations from Jesus as he reads this book, he can find them in The Gospel According To Thomas.

It might be well to note that LaoTse preceded Jesus in history by about five centuries. The scholar can follow the Gnostic Idea from East to West to its birth as a doctrine of Love in the first century A.D.-only to have all but traces of its original subjectivism removed from worldly view within the first 500 years of its history. Interestingly, this is what both Jesus and LaoTse said would happen-and the prophets before them. However, both men say, in nearly identical terms, that in the final days of linear time "There is nothing hidden that shall not be revealed, and there is nothing covered that shall remain without being uncovered."

From The Child Within Us Lives! A Synthesis of Science, Religion and Metaphysics By William Samuel

--------




edit on 12-8-2012 by Sweetmystery because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 09:53 PM
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reply to post by Sweetmystery
 


I think unfortunately this thread has been hijacked by a debate that focuses on meaningless speculation rather than the actual content of the Gospel of Thomas and the authors interpretation of his Gospel. It is truly impossible to say whether Jesus was Essene or not or w.e because we simply don't know, same thing with this Gospel. Although it is bundled with Gnostic texts it is widely considered as not Gnostic, personally I don't see a strong connection. Also to say that Gnostics are just plain WRONG is a fallacy, no issue is this "black and white" there certainly is a lot more to it but I'm not here to argue that.

Let's focus on what IS important here. The author is able to make some fantastic insights into this Gospel and it has in fact changed my view on how I approach different religious texts. I think it adds a lot of depth to the teachings of Jesus and certainly calls into question the current and widely accepted version of the Bible. I'm extremely curious... what they got hidden in the Vatican's basement


I love the insight as the Father, Mother and Son as Attention, Intention and Expression which really brings us to the core of our knowledge about the brain and the universe as well. I'm curious to having more details or evidence of "the Holy Breath" where he explains it as a method of using breathing to cleanse the body and mind (which is possible as evidenced in Pranayama Yoga, however not in the same way he describes it as creating heat or "fire" unless it is a metaphor for the fire of "right passion."

Looking at today's society, we have experienced a malalignment of these three forces and we can evidently see that some of the most powerful and influential people in this world are those who have dedicated immense energy to these 3 instead of living off others energy (aka absorbing cultural influences such as memes, television and other forms of "masturbation" xD). However those who have used these three forces has used them as "earthly forces" while very few have used them as "heavenly power" (Gandhi, Jesus, Buddha etc).



posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 11:07 PM
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Originally posted by ThisIsMyName
reply to post by Sweetmystery
 


I think unfortunately this thread has been hijacked by a debate that focuses on meaningless speculation rather than the actual content of the Gospel of Thomas and the authors interpretation of his Gospel. It is truly impossible to say whether Jesus was Essene or not or w.e because we simply don't know, same thing with this Gospel. Although it is bundled with Gnostic texts it is widely considered as not Gnostic, personally I don't see a strong connection. Also to say that Gnostics are just plain WRONG is a fallacy, no issue is this "black and white" there certainly is a lot more to it but I'm not here to argue that.

Let's focus on what IS important here. The author is able to make some fantastic insights into this Gospel and it has in fact changed my view on how I approach different religious texts. I think it adds a lot of depth to the teachings of Jesus and certainly calls into question the current and widely accepted version of the Bible. I'm extremely curious... what they got hidden in the Vatican's basement


I love the insight as the Father, Mother and Son as Attention, Intention and Expression which really brings us to the core of our knowledge about the brain and the universe as well. I'm curious to having more details or evidence of "the Holy Breath" where he explains it as a method of using breathing to cleanse the body and mind (which is possible as evidenced in Pranayama Yoga, however not in the same way he describes it as creating heat or "fire" unless it is a metaphor for the fire of "right passion."

Looking at today's society, we have experienced a malalignment of these three forces and we can evidently see that some of the most powerful and influential people in this world are those who have dedicated immense energy to these 3 instead of living off others energy (aka absorbing cultural influences such as memes, television and other forms of "masturbation" xD). However those who have used these three forces has used them as "earthly forces" while very few have used them as "heavenly power" (Gandhi, Jesus, Buddha etc).


Oh, wow! Yippee--- How nice to see you read it and that you appreciated and understand what his message was all about.

The thread did get side tracked---it was weird, how that happened. oh well---

I honestly do think that the real teaching of Jesus was intentionally reworked by whoever it was that wanted to keep control of the people ---to keep people from realizing the divinity and power is Here within us.

I guess it was a good way to create religions that would keep the people afraid and dependent on false authorities. Looks like it worked for much too long.

I think we are on the verge of a brake through.

I like your word our 'heavenly power'---Yes, maybe the breathing is just that. The breathing thing is interesting idea. There is something obviously 'divine' about breath and breathing---I mean, just in general, breath and life are the same thing in many ways. You can't have one without the other, that is for sure. There must be a holy relationship there, between Life and breath--- One way or another, I can feel that we are "one with" God all the time, but we don't notice it.

Well, I am happy you enjoyed the message in that book---I too just thought the book was brilliant and I love his way with such a truly inspired interpretation. When Lachlen told me he was giving it for free, I was so happy to share it here at ATS.


I think Jesus was showing us the way to real liberation and freedom, the kind based in Love and Truth and God's Living Light as the Intelligence we are all able to live and know and prove.

No wonder the Ruling government did not want Jesus's message to be heard; it was a message of empowerment of the individual.

But, perhaps now it is time. I hope so.

Well, I just wanted to say thank you for your post. It looks like there were a few others who "got it" too---so that is good. :-)


edit on 13-8-2012 by Sweetmystery because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 11:36 PM
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Originally posted by reficul
reply to post by rwfresh
 


thank you,yes you are correct!
but i always use that line for what i believe,and selassie was a man as well!


I always thought it meant that man, we are god expressed... But then i read more about it and found out that they literally believed Haille Salassie ALONE was God expressed as a human.. haha Weird. God in a general's uniform. I love Marley and it was a funny thing to understand that.. Peace!



posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 11:55 PM
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Originally posted by ThisIsMyName
reply to post by Sweetmystery
 


Although it is bundled with Gnostic texts it is widely considered as not Gnostic, personally I don't see a strong connection.


Seriously? Have you read the Gospel of Thomas? At least a third of it is clearly post-Valentinius Gnosticism.

Good grief, look at the prelude:


These are the secret sayings that the living Jesus spoke and Didymos Judas Thomas recorded.


Don't see a "strong connection" to Gnosticism? Hello? Do we not know what the Gnostics were preaching?



posted on Aug, 29 2012 @ 07:17 AM
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“Seriously? Have you read the Gospel of Thomas? At least a third of it is clearly post-Valentinius”
adjensen
You keep calling your position clear (and therefore imply that it is obvious to any learned person) when in fact your claim is contentious among scholars.
“Scholars generally fall into one of two main camps: an "early camp" favoring a date for the "core" of between the years 50 and 100, before or approximately contemporary with the composition of the canonical gospels and a "late camp" favoring a date in the 2nd century, after composition of the canonical gospels.”
en.wikipedia.org...



“These are the secret sayings that the living Jesus spoke and Didymos Judas Thomas recorded.”
FROM your post.
As to your “evidence” you posted above,

“The Nag Hammadi copy of the Gospel of Thomas begins: "These are the secret sayings that the living Jesus spoke and Didymos Judas Thomas recorded." Syrian tradition also states that the apostle's full name was Thomas.”
en.wikipedia.org...
It is odd! You claim that the Gospel of Thomas was written after Jesus by quoting a primary source and a sentence that clearly says that the author of the Gospel of Thomas was www.merriam-webster.com... with Jesus!

The fact remains ( and one that even you agreed with) that Gnosticism existed at the time of Christ’s life.


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posted on Aug, 29 2012 @ 08:50 AM
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Originally posted by wittgenstein
You keep calling your position clear (and therefore imply that it is obvious to any learned person) when in fact your claim is contentious among scholars.


It is contentious because there is an agenda related to dating, but the fact remains that parts of Thomas clearly reflect post-Valentinius Christian Gnosticism. The "early camp" disregards the fact that at least 1/3 of the sayings are in opposition to the canonical Gospels, barring a highly unorthodox interpretation of them, while there is little twisting needed to fit them in with Second Century Christian Gnosticism.


“These are the secret sayings that the living Jesus spoke and Didymos Judas Thomas recorded.”
FROM your post.
As to your “evidence” you posted above,

It is odd! You claim that the Gospel of Thomas was written after Jesus by quoting a primary source and a sentence that clearly says that the author of the Gospel of Thomas was contemporaneous with Jesus!


"Didymos Judas Thomas" is not the Apostle Thomas (he of "doubting Thomas" fame) -- Didymos and Thomas are not names, they are descriptions, one Greek and one Hebrew, which mean "twin". The claimed author of The Gospel of Thomas is Judas, the twin brother of Jesus. Only Syriac Christianity had the belief that Jesus had such a twin, so we may once again point to a later, non-Apostolic, source for the text.


The fact remains ( and one that even you agreed with) that Gnosticism existed at the time of Christ’s life.


Yes, it did, but Christian Gnosticism, and its mythos, did not.



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