Gospel of Judas

“Unlike the accounts in the New Testament Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, the anonymous author of the Gospel of Judas believed that Judas Iscariot alone among the 12 disciples understood the meaning of Jesus’ teachings and acceded to his will. In the diversity of early Christian thought, a group known as Gnostics believed in a secret knowledge of how people could escape the prisons of their material bodies and return to the spiritual realm from which they came.

Elaine Pagels, a professor of religion at Princeton who specializes in studies of the Gnostics, said in a statement, ‘These discoveries are exploding the myth of a monolithic religion, and demonstrating how diverse โ€” and fascinating โ€” the early Christian movement really was.’

The Gospel of Judas is only one of many texts discovered in the last 65 years, including the gospels of Thomas, Mary Magdalene and Philip, believed to be written by Gnostics.”

Not that this will shake the foundations of society, but it still is fascinating. If fundamentalists ever bothered to do that thing us intellectuals like to call “research,” we could possibly have fascinating and productive religious debates. I find the ideas of the Christian Gnostics to be particularly fascinating most likely due to my being raised Catholic. And hey, the New Age-y people would find alot to love about the Gnostics.

Down with the demiurge! ๐Ÿ™‚

‘Gospel of Judas’ Surfaces After 1,700 Years – New York Times

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2 thoughts on “Gospel of Judas

  1. Sorry for the odd comment, just happened to skip around a few posts on here.

    I found your personal commandments post interesting, because you cited the Laws of Robotics as your inspiration, but then turned the whole thing upside-down. The point of the Laws is to avoid any harm or disobedience before self-preservation, whereas you put it the other way around.

    I only common on that as an interesting contrast to the Gnostic ideas of the Gospel of Judas, which are themselves rather opposed to self-preservation. The Gnostic idea that Jesus, a man, shed his material frame in order to become pure spirit, is as you suggest somewhat New Age-y or American Pop-Buddhist. Of course, it is also the complete opposite of the idea of orthodox Chistians: that Jesus, though God, was born as a human to show the value and purpose of material life. I suspect that today, though we like the former idea better in the abstract, we still prefer the latter in daily life.

  2. Cognitive dissonance is fun. ๐Ÿ™‚

    As far as the Laws of Robotics go, I found myself fascinated at the turn taken in philosophy with Giskard’s establishment of the zeroth law. Now, couple that with the later Foundation novels (which, arguably, were part of Asimov’s failed attempt to merge all of his universes) and you can see a nice example of the Law of Unintended Consequences.

    I like playing with ideas – turning them around, upside down, and inside out to try and tease loose the underlying assumptions. Exercise… for the MIND.

    The gnostic ideas tie into a desire for something beyond this existence, a greater meaning. Anyone who is unsatisfied with their life can easily grasp onto that promise. Yet, the concept that God understands what we experience, shares in it, and ultimately will forgive us for weakness gives meaning to the day to day hardships of life.

    A goal and a path.

    Of course, people could learn to enjoy life and pursue the wonders of existence, but that requires work instead of some ancient writings simply giving you the answers.

    Thanks for the comment.

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