Podcast 43 – Gnosticism

Originally published on March 1, 2008

Our friend Bishop T Allen Greenfield returns to the show to talk about Gnostic history and philosophy.

Dr. Greenfield is particularly well-qualified to discuss this subject considering his extensive experience in Gnostic churches serving as bishop. Our conversation covers the definition of Gnosis and Gnostic, the history of ancient sects, the philosophy through the ages, modern permutations of the Gnostic doctrine, and Dr. Greenfield’s ecclesiastic lineage.

interpretation of Gnostic Cosmos

Notable points include differing perspectives on the concept of the Demiurgus and the resultant differences in the views on body and spirit, the secret societies and esoteric orders that have transmitted the Wisdom, and the Apostolic succession of bishops.

'Montsalvat, the Castle of the Grail' by Franz Stassen (1903)

These are mysteries, O Israel,
Difficult to understand.
With much searching shalt thou still fail
To grasp them,
Unless thy search be rightly prosecuted.
Yet the Way to Understanding is ever open
To him who will follow it steadfastly.
It is the Way of the Heart,
And thou shalt be guided therein
By thine own inner Hearing.”

– excerpt from “The Meditation on Vav” in The Book of Tokens

Key 5 - The Hierophant

relevant links:

Smashing Illusions – Rt. Rev. T Allen Greenfield’s Livejournal web site

The Assembly of the Knowledge and Wisdom of Solomon

T Allen Greenfield’s Spiritual and Fraternal Heritage

Ecclesia Gnostica Universalis

The North American College of Gnostic Bishops

T Allen Greenfield’s previous appearances on Occult of Personality podcast

Victorian Fire: The Origins of Sexual Magick by T Allen Greenfield

Fragments of a Faith Forgotten: The Gnostics, a Contibution to the Study of the Origins of Christianity by G.R.S. Mead

Gnosis: The Nature and History of Gnosticism by Kurt Rudolph

Gnosis and Hermeticism from Antiquity to Modern Times by Roelof van den Broek

intro music by HipGnosis

outro music by The Quiet Earth Orchestra, excerpt of “God” (thanks to John Ludi)

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