My Summary

Gnosis means mystical knowledge or intellect. The Gnostics believe that the path to salvation is through an understanding of gnosis where your soul connects you to the Invisible Spirit, or Monad, who is the God. He is beyond all things and he is inconceivable and unknownable. He is unnamable for there is no one to name him. He is immeasurable because there is no one to measure him.

The Invisible Spirit gives rise to other gods through his thoughts of himself. These gods are known as Aeons. They live in the Pleroma, which is the spirit world. It is known as the Entirety and it is eternal like the Invisible Spirit. From him, Barbelo, the virgin Mother and Christ, the Son, make up the 3 forms of God[1]. Christ then communicates with the other 24 Aeons, who are paired as male and female.

One of the Aeons is called Sophia, who is Wisdom. She wants to create something but she doesn't get consent from her male partner or the Invisible Spirit. When she does create something, she gives birth to a misshapen creature. He has the head of a lion and the body of a snake. His name is Yaldabaoth. Sophia is ashamed of her creation and hids Yaldabaoth outside the Pleroma or Entirety. Since Yaldabaoth is ignorant of the Invisible Spirit, he believes that he is the most powerful being and creates a world of his own. This world is the material world that we have and we live in. Because Yaldabaoth or the Demiurge doesn't have access to the knowledge of the Invisible Spirit, he has created a flawed representation of the Entirety, which has evil and suffering.

The Demiurge creates man from an image of what he saw from the voice of the Invisible Spirit. In order to save man, the Aeons and Sophia trick the Demiurge into blowing his spirit into the man. This gives man a connection to the Entirety and chase to escape the prison of the material world by connecting to the mystical knowledge of the Invisible Spirit, gnosis.

The Demiurge is hellbent of keeping us here and submissive to him. This is his world and he has a say as long as we are here. However, Christ came to show us that we can be free when we reach gnosis and realise that we can go home to the Pleroma, which is our eternal home. This world of materiality is not it and anything that the Demiurge promises only seeks to benefit his case. The Demiurge wants to be the only God that we know, that's why he is a jealous God. If God is so powerful and there is no one above him, he has no need to be jealous. Unless, he is a weak God who knows that he can be challenge and therefore he is not perfect, nor as powerful as he says he is. He doesn't want us to know the truth of other Aeons that are more perfect than him, nor his mother Sophia, nor the Invisible Spirit that encompasses everything and created the Entirety, which acts as inspiration for his imperfect world.

My Thoughts

There is strong cord that strikes me with Gnosticism as it challenges the belief that the creator of this world is just, all-powerful and all-knowing. If he was so just, why is there suffering? If he is all-powerful, why is there evil? If he is all-knowing, why doesn't he fix the world? Instead of sending revelations, change humanity into something better. If he was a greater God, he would have done these things but he is not. He is imperfect and we are his creations. It shows that even the creator of this world is flawed and it reveals hope that there is a better God out there, who is looking out for us and has full-knowledge of all things. There is something deeper than what we are told in the Bible or even Quaran. Maybe I need to read further, however, I have come to see that this scriptures preach hope and fear. He say that those who obey will go to Heaven and those who don't will go to Hell. They tell you to worship God and do good things. Fulfill these duties and our life after will be good. You will get all you want. No, I don't want all that I want in the life after. I want to feel nothing. I want eternal bliss of being close to God. Not virgins and rivers and wine. Those are material things that I want to leave in this world. I want to go home. A home that I have never known but one that is good.

Most religions preach duties and responsibilities. These are just representations of true understanding, gnosis. Anyone can pray but the benefits of praying and the relationship you have with God cannot be taught. That is a personal journey that can only be understood and taken by the individual soul. For the vastness of divinity cannot be understood through a keyhole of traditions and duties. The truth and the will to seek it is key and it requires doing what others are not doing.

Even if the Gnostic Christians were just telling stories, they had a strong philosophical idea, you don't need duties, responsibilities and an affiliation to a faith to connect with God, having mystical knowledge of who and what God is in your own simple capacity is good and a worthy attempt because it is the thing that could save you from this material world of light and dark and into a world of light, the Entirety of Pleroma.

  1. This must be where the Trinity comes from. In fact, in this section, they mention that Barbello and Christ are closely related to the Invisible Spirit, where Barbello is the second principle and Christ is the self-originating of both the Invisible Spirit and Barbello. ↩︎