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  Sunday, 05 November 2023
  1 Replies
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Hello and thank you for this platform.

I'm curious to learn whether the Absolute was aware in some way, that while it was unfolding itself, that "matter" would appear?
Also, was the Absolute aware that as the unfoldment was happening, and as it was expanding into countless fractals, that these pieces would become trapped?

and finally, why is matter equated to being stuck, lost, degenerated, "evil", corrupt ... if the Absolute is ultimately the creator of everything?

Did it not know it would get stuck in a wheel of karma? ... or did it WANT to get stuck in the wheel of karma?

I've often wondered ... is it "I" that really needs to heal?, or is it God that needs to heal? Is not the ego "of God"? how could ego be anything separate from God?
3 months ago
·
#29999
Accepted Answer
Let's view this topic from the perspective of the Valentinian creation myth. Here is a commented synopsis of it: http://gnosis.org/library/valentinus/Valentinian_Creation.htm



I'm curious to learn whether the Absolute was aware in some way, that while it was unfolding itself, that "matter" would appear?
Also, was the Absolute aware that as the unfoldment was happening, and as it was expanding into countless fractals, that these pieces would become trapped?


From the synopsis:
In the Valentinian view, human beings consist of three components. Each person has a material body, an animating soul, and a spirit. Similarly, the cosmos itself is viewed as having a tripartite structure. It too is said to consist of spirit (pneuma), soul (psyche) and matter (hyle).Valentinians trace this tripartite structure back to the origin of the cosmos. According to their creation myth, the cosmos has its origins from the fall and redemption of the divine emanation (Aeon) Sophia or "Wisdom". Sophia attempted to know the Father through thinking alone and as a result she was excluded from the divine Fullness (pleroma) and fell into ignorance and suffering. She repented of her actions and began to plead for assistance. The Father had mercy on her and sent Christ to her and she attained knowledge (gnosis) of the Father. Sophia's fall, repentance and redemption are said by Valentinian writers to give rise to the three constituents of the universe. Matter (hyle) is said to originate from her suffering, soul (psyche) from her repentance, and spirit (pneuma) from her gnosis (Against Heresies 1:2:3, 1:4:1-5, 1:5:4 cf. also Refutation of Heresies 6:25-27, Excerpts of Theodotus 43:2-46:1, etc.).

Spirit is destined to attain salvation and reenter the presence of God along with Christ and Sophia. Matter or the "left" has no share in salvation and is dissolved by gnosis. Soul or the "right" is intermediate between matter and spirit and is characterized by free will and is capable of partial salvation (Excerpts of Theodotus 56:3).

We can see that there are different part of the Absolute and that these parts have free will. Sophia "wanted to know" and acted through her curiosity. Because someone is curious if they don't know, they are lead by ignorance. Thus the Absolute (or that part of it) was not aware, what would happen.




and finally, why is matter equated to being stuck, lost, degenerated, "evil", corrupt ... if the Absolute is ultimately the creator of everything?

Did it not know it would get stuck in a wheel of karma? ... or did it WANT to get stuck in the wheel of karma?


From the synopsis:
During her fall and redemption by Christ, Sophia gave rise to unformed spiritual substance (pneuma). She was unable to form it herself. Therefore she was required to find a place for it to grow to maturity. This place is the material world. Thus in Valentinian thought, the creation of the world is instrumental in the process of redemption.
...
The Demiurge is "the god through whom she (Sophia) made the heaven and the earth (Excerpts of Theodotus 47:2). Sophia "uses him as a hand, to beautify and work on the things below"(Tripartite Tractate 100:31-33). Though him she shaped matter into an image of the Fullness in order to provide a place for the seed to "grow and increase in it, and so become suitable for the reception of perfect Word" (Against Heresies 1:5:6). Note that the substance of the world (i.e. matter) is viewed negatively but its form contains images of pleroma and thus makes it suitable place for the seed to grow to maturity.
...
Thus the creation can be understood as a mechanism by which lack and matter are gradually destroyed. As each person attains to gnosis, the lack and matter within them is destroyed and the universe is one step closer to reintegration with the pleroma.
...
According to Valentinian teaching, the world is created to aid the spiritual element to return to the Fullness (pleroma). Its creation was necessitated by the primordial fall into ignorance and suffering.

Categorizing matter into good or bad will not help. You can look at matter as an anchor point for the ignorant soul. Think of air inside of a balloon. It is "hard" for the air to be stuck and pressurized inside the balloon. But if the balloon would burst, the air would be dissolved and mixed with the other gases in the atmosphere, until it is indistinguishable. In an analogous manner, the ignorant soul without matter would never have the chance to recognize itself. So inside the matter it has the opportunity "to know" itself inside its' own microcosm.



I've often wondered ... is it "I" that really needs to heal?, or is it God that needs to heal? Is not the ego "of God"? how could ego be anything separate from God?

It is the soul inside the "I" that needs to heal, which then leads to the unfoldment of spirit (of that particle of God). For the sake of clarity, it can be synthesized as: the ignorant part of God is healed by the cognizant part of God. There are levels and levels and levels, which is also true for the Absolute.
3 months ago
·
#29999
Accepted Answer
Let's view this topic from the perspective of the Valentinian creation myth. Here is a commented synopsis of it: http://gnosis.org/library/valentinus/Valentinian_Creation.htm



I'm curious to learn whether the Absolute was aware in some way, that while it was unfolding itself, that "matter" would appear?
Also, was the Absolute aware that as the unfoldment was happening, and as it was expanding into countless fractals, that these pieces would become trapped?


From the synopsis:
In the Valentinian view, human beings consist of three components. Each person has a material body, an animating soul, and a spirit. Similarly, the cosmos itself is viewed as having a tripartite structure. It too is said to consist of spirit (pneuma), soul (psyche) and matter (hyle).Valentinians trace this tripartite structure back to the origin of the cosmos. According to their creation myth, the cosmos has its origins from the fall and redemption of the divine emanation (Aeon) Sophia or "Wisdom". Sophia attempted to know the Father through thinking alone and as a result she was excluded from the divine Fullness (pleroma) and fell into ignorance and suffering. She repented of her actions and began to plead for assistance. The Father had mercy on her and sent Christ to her and she attained knowledge (gnosis) of the Father. Sophia's fall, repentance and redemption are said by Valentinian writers to give rise to the three constituents of the universe. Matter (hyle) is said to originate from her suffering, soul (psyche) from her repentance, and spirit (pneuma) from her gnosis (Against Heresies 1:2:3, 1:4:1-5, 1:5:4 cf. also Refutation of Heresies 6:25-27, Excerpts of Theodotus 43:2-46:1, etc.).

Spirit is destined to attain salvation and reenter the presence of God along with Christ and Sophia. Matter or the "left" has no share in salvation and is dissolved by gnosis. Soul or the "right" is intermediate between matter and spirit and is characterized by free will and is capable of partial salvation (Excerpts of Theodotus 56:3).

We can see that there are different part of the Absolute and that these parts have free will. Sophia "wanted to know" and acted through her curiosity. Because someone is curious if they don't know, they are lead by ignorance. Thus the Absolute (or that part of it) was not aware, what would happen.




and finally, why is matter equated to being stuck, lost, degenerated, "evil", corrupt ... if the Absolute is ultimately the creator of everything?

Did it not know it would get stuck in a wheel of karma? ... or did it WANT to get stuck in the wheel of karma?


From the synopsis:
During her fall and redemption by Christ, Sophia gave rise to unformed spiritual substance (pneuma). She was unable to form it herself. Therefore she was required to find a place for it to grow to maturity. This place is the material world. Thus in Valentinian thought, the creation of the world is instrumental in the process of redemption.
...
The Demiurge is "the god through whom she (Sophia) made the heaven and the earth (Excerpts of Theodotus 47:2). Sophia "uses him as a hand, to beautify and work on the things below"(Tripartite Tractate 100:31-33). Though him she shaped matter into an image of the Fullness in order to provide a place for the seed to "grow and increase in it, and so become suitable for the reception of perfect Word" (Against Heresies 1:5:6). Note that the substance of the world (i.e. matter) is viewed negatively but its form contains images of pleroma and thus makes it suitable place for the seed to grow to maturity.
...
Thus the creation can be understood as a mechanism by which lack and matter are gradually destroyed. As each person attains to gnosis, the lack and matter within them is destroyed and the universe is one step closer to reintegration with the pleroma.
...
According to Valentinian teaching, the world is created to aid the spiritual element to return to the Fullness (pleroma). Its creation was necessitated by the primordial fall into ignorance and suffering.

Categorizing matter into good or bad will not help. You can look at matter as an anchor point for the ignorant soul. Think of air inside of a balloon. It is "hard" for the air to be stuck and pressurized inside the balloon. But if the balloon would burst, the air would be dissolved and mixed with the other gases in the atmosphere, until it is indistinguishable. In an analogous manner, the ignorant soul without matter would never have the chance to recognize itself. So inside the matter it has the opportunity "to know" itself inside its' own microcosm.



I've often wondered ... is it "I" that really needs to heal?, or is it God that needs to heal? Is not the ego "of God"? how could ego be anything separate from God?

It is the soul inside the "I" that needs to heal, which then leads to the unfoldment of spirit (of that particle of God). For the sake of clarity, it can be synthesized as: the ignorant part of God is healed by the cognizant part of God. There are levels and levels and levels, which is also true for the Absolute.
Almustafa selected the reply #29999 as the answer for this post — 3 months ago
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