Material energy - good or evil?

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Material energy - good or evil?

#1 Postby lauriso » Sun Aug 07, 2016 2:35 am

Recently I've been talking with a friend about differences between Vedic and Gnostic worldviews. In the Vedas this material energy is also a direct manifestation from God, and even though it's unpleasant, it's just and rectifying. In Gnosticism, as far as I know, matter is "non-God", unjust, blind and indifferent.

When someone suffers a tragic accident / disease, Vedic people would explain in as them getting their due because of karma. How would the Gnostics respond?

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Re: Material energy - good or evil?

#2 Postby Anna » Mon Aug 08, 2016 5:42 am

Blessings, Lauriso!

You ask a good question here. Gnosticism is a broad, catch-all term which encompasses many views in the same way that the term "orthodox Christianity" refers to a large number of varied interpretations of canonical Gospel. All gnostics do not interpret the gnostic scriptures in the same way, and these various groups may not even utilize all gnostic scriptures in their teachings and practices.

In our Sophian Gnostic Lineage we view everything as having its being in God. Nothing is separate from Yahweh, Light Continuum. All arises from Light Continuum and all is sacred as it is, for we are all in the process of evolving into beings that embody the Holy Spark of God that is within us and all beings. We are all on the path of enlightenment together.

In our Christian Kabbalah we speak of the material realm as Asiyah, Hebrew for the World of Action. This is the place where the life-force given by God is directed according to the choices of intelligent beings. It may be directed for good, thus serving God's Will, or it may be directed to serve the ego in a mixture of good and evil. Even worse, it may be used to do evil, causing great harm to self and others. It is all about our awareness of the Divine within and around and ever beyond. Without awareness of God we walk in the darkness of ignorance and reaction, living like beasts- or even less than beasts- instead of humans.

So we certainly do not reject our materiality. On the contrary, we embrace it as a gift from God, an opportunity to grow in the Spirit and embody our Divine Indweller of Light- the Christ Spirit- to the fullest extent possible. We do this not only for our own sake, but also for the sake of all beings, for all of us are bound to this world of suffering together.

When difficulties arise, as they naturally do in this world where all of us are weaving our destiny together, we do not concern ourselves very much with whether or not this is our karma. The world is a place of evolution and everything that happens can be used for the path of Liberation from the bondage of karma. If we look at the world we see so much suffering. This can cause our hearts to open to compassion and love for other beings and for ourselves. If we open to the Mother Spirit and ask for her guidance she will move with us out of her Infinite compassion and love for each of her children.

For us, challenges can be transformed into powerful opportunities for prayer and ceremony for the people and the land. Pain and illness can connect us deeply with others, presenting a pathway for prayers of healing that may not have arisen without such difficulties. And since life is full of these challenges, we don’t go looking for them. They arise as they arise because of the impermanent nature of this place. The healing and growth that can come through these times can bless us all!

I hope this is helpful in your contemplation of our Lineage. May the Great Mother, Imma Gadol, bless and illuminate you!

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Re: Material energy - good or evil?

#3 Postby Tau Malachi » Mon Aug 08, 2016 8:30 am

Blessings to you in Messiah Yeshua!

Along with what Anna has shared I’d like to add a few thoughts.

There are, indeed, classical Gnostic schools of thought that take a very dim and negative view of matter and materiality, and likewise that hold a dualistic view of the god of the Old Testament and god of the New Testament, as though they are two different gods. That is not our view however, but rather we see One God and an evolution of human intelligence and consciousness that allows for a greater revelation with the Gospel, and likewise, as has been shared, in our view the entire matrix of creation, supernal, spiritual, astral and material, is woven by the Holy One, and emanates from the Infinite and Eternal.

In the process of emanation and creation there is a progressive restriction of the Light of the Infinite, and with this a progressive generation of darkness and admixture, and an illusion of separation - the ignorance. At the level of the material dimension, and the universe and worlds appearing in it, there is the greatest restriction of the Holy Light, the greatest concealment of the Holy One, but nevertheless something of the Holy Light and the Infinite One is within the material reality and everything that appears in it; hence, the Holy One is within creation, and manifests as creation, and yet ever beyond creation, the Most High, the Supreme.

In our view the purpose of material incarnation and the transmigration of souls is a process of spiritual evolution and awakening, and in effect material incarnation and the material worlds is like a womb through which, ultimately, we are to be born to eternal life, the realization of bornless being, or divine or enlightened being; hence, the realization of our innate unity with the Holy One, conscious unification with the Infinite and Eternal. In other words, ultimately we are to transcend the necessity of physical, material incarnation, attaining liberation - the Great Exodus, or Great Ascension. Thus, we do not cherish the flesh, but neither do we despise the flesh.

Naturally, in the ignorance, in the illusion of separation, although physical incarnation can be a vehicle for the enlightenment and liberation of souls, so also it can be a cause of bondage and continued transmigration, an ongoing play of a karmic continuum, or karmic web, in self-grasping, desire and fear, and in this unenlightened condition many souls become lost in aimless wandering through potentially countless incarnations. This is the darkness of matter and material incarnation, and obviously it is a challenge to most souls in the human collective, as well as all manner of creatures here in this world.

As for karma and unfortunate circumstances, it is not as simple as the karma of an individual soul; there is that, but then there is the karma of family, unenlightened society, the time and place, and the greater collective of souls. Likewise, in the gospels we learn that there are souls that take up unfortunate circumstances for the sake of others, for the revelation of the works of God, and for the glorification of God; hence, a labor for the sake of the enlightenment and liberation of living spirits and souls, the fulfillment of the intention of the Most High in creation. So apparently unfortunate circumstances are not always the manifestation of the negative karma of an individual, though often that may be the case; it depends, though, and in our view the karmic continuum is more complicated, and more subtle and sublime, than just a linear, “black and white” view of karma.

These were a few thoughts I was inclined to share.

Shalom Aleichem - peace be upon you!
Tau Malachi
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Ecclesia Pistis Sophia

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