Return greetings!

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Cyrus_K
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2015 6:42 pm

Return greetings!

#1 Postby Cyrus_K » Wed Feb 08, 2017 6:28 am

Shalom and greetings,

I was last on this forum over a year ago as part of spiritual exploration but I am returning now after a long hiatus. I am not sure what reignited my interested in Sophian Gnosticism at this time but I began to remember some of Tau Malachi's wonderful, wise, and edifying posts on Facebook since I am connected with him there, and also some of the material I read before in "Living Gnosis". I feel as though, spiritually, I lost my way in recent months, not being sure of what to believe about either God or the nature of human life and this world, but that the book "Living Gnosis" contained penetrating insight that made sense to me. I'm not a particularly religious person and don't strongly identify with a particular sect or religion, but I have an interest in the experience of gnosis, the nature and reality of God (I believe God to be beyond personality and that It is the Universal Spirit), prayer, and meditation.

The parts of Living Gnosis that appealed to me most of all were its ethical and psychological wisdom, and commentary about ignorance and suffering in this world. I wish to have an open mind on spiritual matters, but I'm less able to make sense of its christology, extensive theology, and metaphysics of Kabbalah, and I'm not sure if I could believe all of those parts just yet.

On the forum, I wanted to ask whether someone could still learn from and follow the Gnosticism without necessarily believing all of the Sophian metaphysical and Christological teachings? And is one required to accept some form of Kabbalah or Judaism in order to apply Sophian Gnosticism in one's own life and self-development? (I do not have a Judeo-Christian background but am familiar with some of the basics of the Bible). I would like to see this form of Gnosticism as universal wisdom rather than a sectarian approach, as I believe in the concept of Perennial wisdom dispersed among many religions and traditions. I have some exposure to perennial wisdom through readings in Sufism, Vedanta, Meister Eckhart, and the Gospel of Thomas. I think that Tau Malachi is quite open-minded about that as well.

So I am truly hoping that I could learn from the forum as well as from the books--especially the practical aspects of the Path that can be applied to daily life, thought patterns, emotional refinement, compassion, and conscience.

To say a little about the more mundane side of life, I'm currently an IT business analyst with a large consulting firm based in the DC metro area of the United States. When I first joined the forum I was probably still a grad student studying Computer Science, if I did so back in 2015. 2016 was a stressful year in many ways, both for work-related and personal reasons, so it was hard on my emotionally and mentally. The election cycle was hard on me as well and the political situation continues to concern me. I wish that I had a spiritual network or support system aside from usual friends and family, and I hope to find that with Ecclesia Pistis Sophia if you will allow me :) I have always found the bishops and teachers here to be kind, welcoming, respectful.

Blessings,
Kaifi

Elder Gideon
Site Admin
Posts: 1247
Joined: Mon May 10, 2004 8:41 am

Welcome Back!

#2 Postby Elder Gideon » Wed Feb 08, 2017 8:23 pm

Shalom Kaifi:

It is good to see you here again. I recognize there are cycles in our experience that demand our focus, as you were sharing. So long as there is purpose in these demands, that they facilitate something needed for oneself or others, one can derive strength from them.

We recognize that anyone meeting us through books, social media, or our forums are going to bring such different needs and experiences. We wish to benefit everyone where and as they are. What is most useful, please use in your spiritual life and practice.

Perhaps you already knew this, but there is also a youtube channel named Ecclesia Pistis Sophia, which uploads a Shabbat discourse almost every week. There, you will get a very intimate sense of the voices and energy of our immediate community. To interact with our larger, online community, consider a live chat led usually by Elder Sarah. This is real-time and very supportive of diverse individuals. The link is right here and will allow you talk directly with practitioners every Tuesday night.

Through a consistent exposure to these venues, you will get a feel for our community and lineage. If this benefits you, please interact. We'd welcome your insights and questions!

Grace and Peace be with you of the Living Savior be with you! 

Shalom!

Penelope
Posts: 45
Joined: Sun May 23, 2004 6:55 pm

Re: Return greetings!

#3 Postby Penelope » Thu Feb 09, 2017 1:17 pm

Shalom and welcome, Kaifi,

Thank you for your honest sharing and questions. I don't think it's necessary to believe the Sophian metaphysical and Christological teachings. They are given for contemplation, seeking the deeper meaning within that speaks to us. Over the years, my understanding (and lack thereof) has been continually refined, as understanding moved from conceptual to experiential. And then experience of a teaching continues to be refined. Just showing up is the beginning of an amazing journey. Praise the Holy One!

Penelope

sheryl
Site Admin
Posts: 859
Joined: Sat Feb 14, 2004 11:56 am
Location: Grass Valley, CA
Contact:

Re: Return greetings!

#4 Postby sheryl » Sun Feb 12, 2017 10:32 am

Hi Kaifi!

Welcome back to our online community! I have often heard it taught that Sophians do not have a list of doctrines or tenets to be believed/accepted, as is common among religious organizations.

As Penelope shared, our teachings are for contemplation, to expand our inner life.

So please enjoy.

Shabbat Shalom!

Sheryl

Cyrus_K
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2015 6:42 pm

Re: Return greetings!

#5 Postby Cyrus_K » Tue Feb 14, 2017 6:12 pm

Thank you so much for the welcoming responses, Elder Gideon, Penelope, and Sheryl! That is along the lines of what I was thinking as well...perhaps much of the theology presented in Living Gnosis is metaphorical or meant to stimulate contemplation, as you said, rather than a dogma or creed that must be accepted as in most exoteric religions? That would also be more inclusive. I was wondering whether I could follow the ethical and psychological wisdom aspects without necessarily subscribing to Christianity itself. Yet I greatly respect Yeshua as a spiritual master and enlightened being or an avatar of the Holy One, and the same for St. Mary Magdalene. I love Tau Malachi's interpretations of the essential Torah Wisdom and also Gospel wisdom, and much of the letters about the sayings in the Gospel of Thomas. The non-dual and experiential side of Christian Gnosticism speaks to me as well, reminds me to find God in all of nature and living things as well. There's a wonderful sense of light and hope in that.

On a side note, I tried to enter the Sophian.org chat room tonight with my forum screenname and password but that didn't work; apparently one needs to register for that feature separately. It seems that I will miss the Tuesday chat tonight (it's already 18:11 PST) but I hope I can attend it next Tuesday or perhaps later this week if it is possible. I would have liked to say Hello to Elder Sarah and Tau Malachi. Elder Gideon, please convey my best wishes to them on my behalf if you could!

Shalom,
Kaifi

Tau Malachi
Site Admin
Posts: 5317
Joined: Wed Oct 22, 2003 4:20 pm
Location: Grass Valley, Ca.

Re: Return greetings!

#6 Postby Tau Malachi » Wed Feb 15, 2017 12:24 pm

Shalom Kaifi,

I'm glad to see you have returned. As has been shared, the purpose of the teachings on all levels is spirituality, not religion, and the Kabbalah we share is a symbolic spiritual and mystical language that expresses direct spiritual and mystical experiences, as well as serves to facilitate spiritual realization - spiritual realization, the acquisition of wisdom, understanding and knowledge, and generation of love and compassion, is our aim. So each aspirant may glean from the teachings and practices what is good for them, and apply it as they see fit in their lives, and it is our hope it may be of some benefit to them in their journey.

Blessings!
Tau Malachi
Sophia Fellowship
Ecclesia Pistis Sophia


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