gnostic christian

“I see no reason that a man should have any issue with worshiping a goddess any more than a woman would in worshiping a male deity. It is undeniable that women, particularly in the Abrahamic faiths, have been doing just that for thousands of years, though they do like to sneak in the divine feminine under the cloak of the Virgin Mary.” • Thomm Quackenbush

Vegetarianism, Veganism, and Sant Mat, by James Bean, Plus a Compilation of Veg Quotes of the East & West

It’s hard to reach more subtle states of tranquility in meditation on an animal flesh diet based on the suffering of other beings.

“I must point out that animal food, even if a single particle is eaten, is detrimental to spiritual progress.” (Huzur Baba Sawan Singh)

The Way of the Saints and Mystics, Getting Back to Eden: “And God said, ‘Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food.’” (Hebrew Bible, Genesis 1:29, New International Version)

Master Kirpal Singh speaking about Rumi and the other most advanced Murshids (spiritual masters) of Sufi mysticism once said: “Those who take up the practices concerning the lower centers in the body, do take meat – the Mohammedans and people of other religions also. But those who are anxious to rise above body consciousness and go into the Beyond have of necessity to eschew all that. This is the Path I have put before you. Liberation or salvation is something which starts only when you rise above body consciousness. For that reason, vegetarianism is the first essential.” (The Night is a Jungle, published by Ruhani Satsang)

The harshest words that Guru Kabir ever spoke were directed against the slaughter or consumption of innocent animals: “The man who eats meat is a demon in human form. Keep away from him – his company will ruin your meditation.”

Ahimsa (Non-Violence) and Diet

“Nothing will benefit human health and increase chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.” (Albert Einstein)

The following, on the reason why we in Santmat advocate following the vegetarian diet, is by Swami Santsevi Ji Maharaj from the book, The Harmony of All Religions (Sarvadharma Samanvy), published by Maharshi Mehi Ashram:

“The saints have addressed the sin of violence with particular attention to the foods which are eaten. Foods which are produced by killing living beings, as well as foods which are not pure and fresh, are considered tamasic. Consumption of these is prohibited by the teachings of the saints. This includes animal products such as meat, fish, and eggs. These foods inhibit the clarity of the mind and the health of the body. There is an old saying: 'Whatever kind of food we take in, its properties will also fill our mind.’ A parallel saying is, 'Whatever we eat, just so will our breath smell [indicates the visible effect of food].’

Further, Kabir Sahab says: 'The kind of food and drink which we consume directly influences how our mind will become. Even the quality of water which we drink will influence our speech.’ These words of Kabir Sahib are not merely rhetorical conjecture, but represent direct experience…

"A great yogi named Bhupendranath Ji Sanyal has said: 'It is preferable to always avoid the consumption of flesh and fish. This is because in the very cells of these animals there might be bad diseases. But even more significantly, the natural vibration of these creatures is absorbed into the blood. This can create agitation and even sickness, and will destroy the natural calmness of the mind. Also, one must not take intoxicants, as this is a great breach of the spiritual path and natural duty (dharma). [Under the influence of intoxicants people are unable to discern the right path of action].’

"Therefore, we must be disciplined in what we eat and drink, and by being disciplined, our wealth and spiritual path are protected. This world becomes agreeable, and so does the next world, since we won’t be incurring the karmas from killing other living beings.” (Beloved Swami Santsevi Ji Maharaj, Sant Mat, the Path of the Masters)

All past and present Masters of Sant Mat, the most advanced Saints of Inner Light and Sound, advocate following the vegetarian diet. In fact, being vegetarian is a requirement in order to be initiated into the meditation practice of Sant Mat, Surat Shabd Yoga, Meditation upon the inner Light and Sound of God.

Sant Mat is a vegetarian Path for mystical, spiritual, ethical and theological reasons. The Masters teach that foods are of three kinds: Satvik, Rajsik, and Tamsik. This last category of foods, which includes all flesh foods, is to be completely avoided. Satvik (pure foods), the first category, includes: grains, beans, vegetables, fruits, seeds, and nuts. Satvik foods are considered by Mystics to promote relaxation, meditation, and spiritual experience.

The bad karma and other negative effects of flesh-eating darkens one’s vision of inner Light, interfering with concentration and meditation. It’s interesting to notice that the Satvik diet of Sant Mat, of Hinduism and the Yoga Philosophy of India is also: the life-extension diet, the anti-cancer diet, the diet for antioxidants and most of the other plant-based nutrients, AND the diet of the Light & Sound mystics, East and West.

A Young Kirpal Singh Meditating at an Early Age

“Kirpal began meditating at the age of four. When other boys and girls of his age were busy playing, he would be busy meditating. He never wasted his time with sports. He would sit quiet with eyes closed. He would see spiritual sights within and would traverse on spiritual planes. He would remain lost in ecstasy. But whenever this absorption in meditation would break after intervals of 2 to 3 months, he would feel very restless. His spiritual flights would, however, start again shortly afterwards.

Abstinence from Meat

"His family was non-vegetarian But he was averse to taking meat even as a child. While his brothers and sisters would ask for more, he would have none at all. He was content with bread and vegetables. His father asked, 'Pal, why don’t you take meat? It will do you good.’ He sweetly replied, 'It is very well, father, but is not meat dead flesh, and would you have me make a burial ground of my body?’ The father could only smile and the child had his own way.” (The Beloved Master – Some Glimpses from the Life of Sant Kirpal Singh, by Bhadra Sena)

The notion that vegetarianism is “cultural” and confined mostly to India is the inaccurate assumption of some new age or esoteric teachers in the West. It is true that many conventional world religions condone flesh-eating, but if you do some comparative mysticism you’ll soon discover that the serious esoteric traditions which have practiced Light mysticism, Sound mysticism, and Ascension mysticism through higher planes of heavens are all in agreement about the need for contemplative mystics to abstain from the flesh. The list of Western vegetarian paths includes: Pythagoreans, followers of the Hermetic philosophy of Egypt, the Sethian Gnostics, Theraputae, Essenes (and other Light-mystics within Judaism), the original Jewish Christians called Ebionites (see The Gospel of Jesus – In Search of His Original Teachings, by John Davidson), the Gnostic religions, Manichaeans, some Catholic monasteries, monasteries of the Orthodox Church – including the great mystery school atop Mount Athos in Greece, and the Sufi mystics of Islam who practice Zikhr of the Spirit, Light, and Sound. Most every path that advocates a present-tense spirituality about reentering Paradise or going Back to Eden during this life teaches vegetarianism.

A Western Master of Sound & Light by the name of Pythagoras once said, “Our Earth has abundance of such pure and harmless foods and there is no need for us to partake of meals for which blood has to be shed and innocent life sacrificed.”

Pythagoras also said: “As long as Man continues to be the ruthless destroyer of lower living beings, he will never know health or peace. For as long as men massacre animals, they will kill each other. Indeed, he who sows the seed of murder and pain cannot reap joy and love.”

Just like the Pythagoreas gathered together at sunrise, so did members of a Jewish sect of antiquity known as the Therapeutae, and like the Essene branch of Judaism, they were vegetarians. Josephus and Philo wrote about the Essenes and Therapeutae. Philo of Alexandria describes meals at a Therapeutae monastic community in Alexandria: “…And the table, too, is kept clear of animal flesh, nothing which has blood, but there is placed upon it bread for food and salt for seasoning, to which also hyssop is sometimes added…”

John the Baptist Ate Locust (Carob) BEANS, NOT BUGS

“John the Baptist belonged to a group of ascetics who believed in repentance and in leading an austere lifestyle. The carob bean was seen as the diet of the lower class who normally endured hardship and exploitation from the priestly class. So we can conclude that JTB ate (locust plant) seed from the carob tree.” (Wiki Answers Website) Also according to the Gospel of the Ebionites, John the Baptist ate carob beans, bread or cakes made from carob bean (locust bean) flour.

In recent years some of us have noticed the vegetarianism and even veganism present in the original teachings of Jesus and Original Jesus Movement or Hebrew Christians (Ebionites, Nasoreans) found in the Gospel of the Hebrews, Aramaic texts, and other scriptures once used during the early centuries.  

Vegetarian Sayings of the Historic Jesus and His Spiritual Successors (Apostles) in the Original Jesus Movement (Ebionites of Israel)

“Be on guard, so that your hearts do not become heavy with the eating of flesh and with the intoxication of wine and with the anxiety of the world, and that day come upon you suddenly; for as a snare it will come upon all who dwell upon the surface of the earth.” (Jesus, Luke 21:34, Evangelion Da-Mepharreshe — Old Syriac-Aramaic Manuscript of the Gospel of Luke)

Like the Essenes, Jesus, his family, and the original followers were also vegetarians and opposed to all sacrifice of animals in the Jewish temple.

“I am come to do away with sacrifices, and if you cease not sacrificing, the wrath of God will not cease from you.” (saying of Jesus in the Gospel of the Hebrews)

Stopping Animal Sacrifice in the Temple of Jerusalem

During the First Century AD, the Essenes were one of the three main branches of Judaism. They were opposed to animal sacrifices being made in the Jewish temple and they were also known to be vegetarians. The Essenes were the group that Jesus and the first Christians, the Ebionites, were closest to, sharing with them many of the same values and sacred texts. Unlike the Sadducees and Pharisees, the Essenes are never criticized in the New Testament.

“When it was almost time for the Jewish Passover, Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the Temple courts he found men selling cattle, sheep and doves and others sitting at tables exchanging money. So he made a whip out of cords and drove all from the Temple, both sheep and cattle; he scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. To those who sold doves he said: 'Get out of here.’ (John 2:13-16)

According to the Gospel of the Ebionites, Jesus also rejected the Passover meal:

"Where wilt Thou that we prepare for Thee to eat the Passover?”

To which he replied:

“I have no desire to eat the flesh of this Paschal Lamb with you.”

The first followers of Jesus, also known as Ebionites or Nasoreans, were not only kosher, but also strictly adhered to a vegetarian diet. The largest surviving collection of Ebionite scriptures is the Clementine Homilies and the Recognitions of Clement, which are vegetarian gospels that condemn animal sacrifice in any form. For example, the Book of Homilies states that God does not want animals killed at all (3.45), and condemns those who eat meat (7.4, 7.8). And the passages below also show that the diet of the Original Jesus Movement was vegan – plant-based (no eggs, no dairy, and no animal products), as plants are the only foods mentioned in all the texts!

Peter said, “I live on olives and bread, to which I rarely only add vegetables.” (Clementine Homilies 12,6; also see, Recognitions 7,6)

“And happiness is found in the practice of virtue. Accordingly, the Apostle Matthew partook of seeds, and nuts, hard-shelled fruits, and vegetables, without flesh.” (Clement of Alexandria, The Instructor, Book 2, Chapter 1)

“John never ate meat.” (Church historian Hegesipp according to Eusebius, History of the Church II 2:3)

“James, the brother of the Lord, lived on seeds and plants and touched neither meat nor wine.” (Epistulae ad Faustum XXII, 3)

“James, the brother of the Lord was holy from his mothers womb; and he drank no wine nor strong drink, nor did he eat flesh.” (Hegesippus, quoted in The Church History of Eusebius, book 2, chapter 23)

“James was a vegetarian.” (Biblical scholar Dr. Robert Eisenman, author of, “James, the Brother of Jesus”)

The following passage is from the Recognitions of Clement, another “Book of Acts”, an important scripture of early Christianity. This Ebionite Christian author has very nice things to say about those in India who worship One God, follow peaceful customs and laws, and are vegetarian or vegan, seeing parallels between his own religion and that of his brothers and sisters “in the Indian countries” of two thousand years ago:

“There are likewise amongst the Bactrians,
in the Indian countries,
immense multitudes of Brahmans,
who also themselves,
from the tradition of their ancestors,
and peaceful customs and laws,
neither commit murder nor adultery,
nor worship idols,
nor have the practice of eating animal food,
are never drunk,
never do anything maliciously,
but always revere God.”

(Recognitions of Clement, Book 9, Chapter 22, Brahmans, Volume Eight, in a New Testament Apocrypha Section of, “The Ante-Nicene Fathers”)

“The consumption of animal flesh was unknown up until the great flood. But since the great flood, we have had animal flesh stuffed into our mouths. Jesus, the Christ, who appeared when the time was fulfilled, again joined the end to the beginning, so that we are now no longer allowed to eat animal flesh.” (pro-vegetarian early church father Hieronymus)

Gnostic Vegetarianism and the Vegetarian Prayer of Thanksgiving in the Nag Hammadi Library (Gnostic Gospels)

The ethics of Jewish and Christian Gnostic sects of antiquity included vegetarianism. The Prayer of Thanksgiving, one of the Nag Hammadi scriptures unearthed in Egypt, describes a vegetarian communal meal as being part of Gnostic worship. The Manichaean Gnostics were known to be vegetarians. The Prophet Mani’s parents were followers of the Elkasites, which was a Jewish-Christian sect related to the Ebionites and Essenes. They were veg. Mani was the founder of Manichaean Gnosis and was vegetarian, and his inner circle of followers or initiates were as well. A group in China known as the Church of the Light , related to the Manichaeans and Syriac-Aramaic branch of Eastern Christianity, were vegetarians. Their beautiful scriptures are known as the Jesus Sutras.

The Gnostic and Hermetic Prayer of Thanksgiving in the Nag Hammadi Library, also a text found in the Corpus Hermetica of Egypt, describes a vegetarian communal meal or Gnostic love feast. At the end of the prayer the final verse reads:

“When they had said these things in the prayer, they embraced each other and they went to eat their holy food, which has no blood in it.”*

* “Vegetarian food” — footnote from the Marvin Meyer’s translation of this in, “The Gnostic Scriptures”.

* A vegetarian meal. This passage is also found in the Epilogue of Asclepius, in “HERMETICA,” translated by Sir Walter Scott: “Having prayed thus, let us betake ourselves to a meal unpolluted by flesh [animalia] of living things.”

* The G.R.S. Mead translation of the same passage: “With this desire we now betake us to our pure and fleshless meal.”

* “With such hopes we turn to a pure meal that includes no living thing.” (Asclepius, translated in “Hermetica”, Brian Copenhaver, Cambridge University Press)

The Vegan Evolution of Humanity: Vegetarianism is Going Vegan

Traditionally, Santmat and the yoga philosophy have advocated the lacto-vegetarian diet: abstinence from meat, fish, fowl, and eggs, but allowed dairy. Vegan means complete abstinence from all animal products and strictly adhering to a plant-based diet: no dairy, eggs, or meat of any kind, or products made from animals. Based on the current cruel practices of the dairy industry in India and around the world that violate the principle of ahimsa or non-violence, plus all the scores of medical studies showing that dairy consumption adversely affects our health and well-being, I believe if they were here today, the classic Saints such as Mahavira, Guru Kabir, Guru Nanak, Tukarama, Ravidas, Tulsi Das, Namdev, Dariya Sahib, etc…  would not only be advocating a vegetarian diet, but a vegan diet. These days, many are making this transition to vegan, including a growing percentage of those following Sant Mat. This is the compassionate direction that the vegetarian movement is headed in. Vegetarianism is going vegan.

For the medical, human health aspects of veganism, see the research of Dr. T. Colin Campbell, author of, “The China Study”, and Dr. Michael Greger, author of, “How Not To Die”, and creator of the NutritionFacts dot ORG website, a great online resource.

The Reality of Dairy Cruelty – the Final Destination of Dairy Cows is the Slaughterhouse

The following is excerpted from a document called, “My Visit to a Dairy Farm”, published by Pravin K. Shah of the Jaina Education Committee of Jainism (the vegan Jain movement), Jain e-Library, and the Jain Study Center:

“I visited a dairy farm located on Route 2 north of Burlington, Vermont (USA) in May of 1995. The dairy owns approximately 150 cows. All of its milk production is used to make ice cream.

"Here is the summary of what I saw and learnt:

"It was milking time (5:00 PM) and the cows were being milked in 3.5 minutes each by a machine. This is done without regard to how hard it is on the cow. It was extremely difficult to watch the cows’ sufferings during the milking. The machine has no feeling. To extract the last drop of milk sometimes traces of blood get mixed with the milk.

"Since cows produce the most milk after pregnancy, they are kept pregnant for their entire fertile life through artificial insemination.

"Every morning hormones or drugs are injected into the cows. They are also fed a diet geared toward high production of milk. The dairy cow produces about 8 times the amount of milk a cow on the traditional family farm produces.

"The gestation period of cow is 9 months same as human does. If a male calf, of no use to the dairy industry, is born, he is shipped to the veal industry within two or three days of birth. The evening I was there, the farm was shipping three baby calves in a truck to a veal factory. The mother cows were crying when their babies were separated from them. I cannot forget the scene and can still hear the cries of the mother cows.

"The veal industry is the most cruel meat industry in the world. It produces very tender meat that is considered a delicacy. The baby calves are raised in darkness in a very confining crate, which allows practically no movements. They are fed an iron-deficient diet. This way the meat gets very tender and properly textured. They slaughter the baby calves after six months. There is much literature available about cruelty in the veal industry.

"Within two months of delivery, the cows are impregnated again. I did not have the stamina to watch the process of artificial insemination that the farm was showing off.

"About four to five times a year, this farm would take the cows outside for a walk. Otherwise, the cows are tied in one place and they have no choice but to defecate where they are confined. It badly stunk when I was there; the farm would wash the confinement areas once or twice a day, and the remaining times the cows would live in their own waste.

"The life expectancy of cows is about 15 to 20 years. However, after about 4 to 5 years, their milk production capacity drops significantly so these cows are sent to the slaughterhouse for cheap meat which is used in fast food restaurants, hot dog filler, dog & cat food and a variety of other 'foodstuffs’. The rest of the body material (by products) turns up in the products like floor wax, pet-food, medicines, insulin, gelatin, footwear, upholstery, taco filling, cosmetics, candles, and soaps.”

“It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a profoundly sick society.” (Jiddu Krishnamurti)

Compassionate Vegan and Vegetarian Quotes From Supreme Master Ching Hai, and Buddhism

“A true vegetarian diet is vegan: Most of the milk production causes suffering, first of all because the babies of the mother cows are taken away at birth. Deprived from mother’s milk and mother’s love, they’ll be killed as soon as they’re taken away. Then, the mother is forcefully hooked up to a machine that can cause tormenting pain along with illness, just so that humans can take her milk.”

“This killing of other beings must be stopped for humanity to evolve as a civilization.”

“Making a vegan choice is thus a true advancement in the evolution and goodness of our humanity. And then we also know that like attracts like, goodness attracts more goodness. As we share this compassionate truth with others, not only will our own humanity be further uplifted, so will the world’s.”

“It’s the high time that the human race should rise to a higher level of consciousness. They should be noble, kind and compassionate. Go veg, be green, do good, is not just for the planet, it’s for the whole human race ennobling, spiritual merit and quality. They should do it, just for the sake of being noble.”

“We have to turn back to our caring and compassionate nature inside our heart. That’s very simple. We are that. We are compassion. We are merciful; we are caring.”

“If we truly wish to see real harmony born between humans and animals and nature and Heaven, we must be the harmony, we must live in harmony and act also in harmony, which includes the act of eating harmoniously each time we come to the table.”

“Even if the world reduces greenhouse gas emissions, the planet will take time to recover from the gases already in the atmosphere. This is why it is necessary to focus on short-lived gases, namely methane. Organic vegan will produce a beneficial, cooling effect as it will cut down methane and other greenhouse gases which are fatal to our survival.”

Change the World by Changing Ourselves: “It begins with us. Since time immemorial, evolution always begins with the individual. If we want to change the world, we change ourselves first. Now, even if the government forbids smoking or drinking or drugs, but if people individually continue, then we have not made much difference. So now, we have to change.“

“The more people who eliminate meat and, indeed, all animal products from their lives, the more we have a chance to save the planet and not only that, to actually restore our earthly home to her original grace and beauty and even more so, more than what we have known, more beautiful, more abundant, more peace, more gladness than what we have known up to now.”

– Quotes above are from Supreme Master Ching Hai, SMCH Association, from the online book: “From Crisis To Peace: The Organic Vegan Way is the Answer”

“The eating of meat extinguishes the seed of great compassion.” (The Buddha, “Mahaparinirvana Sutra”)

“Veganism is simply letting compassion guide our choice of food. As such, it is a basic Buddhist practice that ought to be expected of everyone who takes refuge vows.” (Norm Phelps, “The Great Compassion: Buddhism & Animal Rights”)

“The Buddha’s teaching leads us to the realization that we must always strive to harm no sentient being, human or nonhuman, whether or not it is in our selfish interest to do so.” (Norm Phelps, “The Great Compassion: Buddhism & Animal Rights”)

“Meat eating and a compassionate religion do not go hand in hand.” (Bodo Balsys, “Ahimsa: Buddhism and the Vegetarian Ideal”)

Vegetarian Diet, Guru Nanak, Guru Kabir, Other Sikh Gurus and Scriptures

Nanak abstained from animal food and enjoined against cruelty to animals: “Having prohibited his disciples to drink wine and eat pork, he (Nanak) himself abstained from eating flesh and ordered not to hurt any living being.” (the Persian historian Mohsin Fani, DABISTAN-E-MAZAHIB)

“To take what rightfully belongs to another, is like a Muslim eating pork, or a Hindu eating beef. Our Guru, our Spiritual Guide, stands by us if we do not eat those carcasses. By mere talk, people do not earn Liberation. Salvation only comes from the practice of truth. By adding spices to forbidden foods, they are not made acceptable. O Nanak, from false talk, only falsehood is obtained”. (Guru Nanak Dev Ji, Guru Granth Sahib Ji, 141)

“Countless are the cutthroats who trade in violence. Countless are sinners who keep on sinning. Countless are liars, wandering lost in their lies. Countless are the impious who live on unwholesome food.” (Guru Nanak, Jap Ji, Guru Granth Sahib Ji, 4)

“Living by neglect and greed, the world eats dead carcasses. Like a goblin or a beast, they kill and eat the forbidden carcasses of meat. Control your urges, or else you will be thrown into the tortures of hell.” (Guru Arjan Dev, Guru Granth Sahib Ji, 723).

“Kabeer says, the dinner of beans and rice is excellent when flavored with salt. Who would cut throats to have meat with his bread?” (Guru Granth Sahib Ji, 1374)

“Kabeer: for those who consume marijuana, fish and wine, no matter what pilgrimages, fasts and rituals they follow, they will all be consigned to hell”. (Guru Granth Sahib Ji, 1377)

“You keep your fasts to please Allah, while you murder other beings for pleasure. You look after your own interests, and so not see the interests of others. What good is your word? O Qazi, the One Lord is within you, but you do not think or contemplation on Him. You do not care for others, you are mad about religion, this is why your life is wasting away.” (Kabir, Guru Granth Sahib Ji, 483)

“You kill living beings, and call it a righteous action. Tell me, brother, what would you call an unrighteous action? You call yourself the excellent sage; then whom would you call a butcher?” (Guru Granth Sahib Ji, 1103).      

Bhai Gurdaas Ji said: “They eat meat by cutting throats, what will their own condition be?” (Vaar 24, Pauree 17)

“One who does not steal, commit adultery, slander anyone, gamble, eat meat or drink wine will be liberated in this very life (i.e. Jeewan Mukt)”. (Guru Gobind Singh, 10th Sikh Guru, “Sudharam Marag Granth”)

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On Demonology
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I wrote this for my friends awhile ago and thought it may be of interest to some people. This is just a brief explanation on the subject of demonology, a topic of interest that I have been studying for quite some time now. It is in no way meant to convince or discourage anyone from studying demonology for themselves, and I encourage skepticism and constructive criticism where appropriate. I am simply publishing this article to shine some light upon what otherwise may be a rather confusing subject matter. This is just the tip of the iceberg, as there are a lot of other similar topics to consider – fallen angels, watchers, Jinn, there are so many different cultural interpretations of “demons” that you can look into. For this, I mainly focus on the Ars Goetia.

I study demons, I believe in actively trying to invoke and evoke them. The typical reaction to such a concept is fear or loathing, but this is because the common interpretation of demonology is one which lacks any insight into the realm of etymology – people fear the very word “demons” as though all of them are the same, as though they have no history, as though they are just utterly representative of evil incarnate. The general conception of demonology is therefore one which lacks insight into spirituality, the occult, and even linguistics.

Let’s begin with the issue of the very word demon. It is derived from the Greek word, Daimon, which simply means a spirit or divine power, much like the Latin words Genius (similar to a guardian angel) and Nurmen (divine will). Further, the Greek word Eudaimonia literally translates to “happiness” and “welfare” and “human flourishing,” and another Greek word, Agathodaemon, translates to “noble spirit.” Daemons in much of classical mythology are simply godlike or divine spirits; this is all to say that most demons are neutral or even positive in their essence.

So where does the idea that demons are innately evil beings come from? From linguistics and an understanding of antiquity, there are indeed spirits associated with what we could typically think of as modern day demons: A Cacodemon is for example is one such negative type of demon and it is once again a Greek concept. With the rise of Abrahamic faiths such as Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, many older entities deemed as Pagan idols were cast into a negative light. The Cannanite Baal (or Ba'al) was once a title meaning “Lord” and was associated with solar worship, but the more zealous Abrahamic faiths took over and erased culture from history, this title alone began to mean something more sinister, as the church demonized all Pagan deities.

A brief matter to consider before progressing: There is quite an interesting history to be found in the treatment of Pagan imagery and symbolism as it pertains to Christianity, as some of the themes, motifs, visuals, etc. they use even to this day actually originated with and/or have strong associations with Paganism and likewise, it is advised for those who would like to know more about such matters to look into early schools of Gnosticism, which shares some connections to Christianity but in a far more mystical sense (some people have made the argument that Gnosticism is the “true” Christianity" or at least that arrived prior to the more widely understood forms of Christianity).

Now, another matter pertaining to demonology: Are demons connected to Satan? People who are active in the occult tend to have different answers, but the short answer is no. For me personally, I will preface this matter by saying that the closest thing I have to an external “God” is Lucifer, and although many confuse him for Satan, this is due to major discrepancies and fallacies in translating ancient texts. His real nature is that of the “light bringer,” and he is associated with the planet Venus, with goddesses such as Sophia (in fact, Lucifer could just as well be a female or transcend sex/gender entirely – in Hermetic philosophy, one of the seven principles of wisdom is that everything has a gender to it. This is different from the cultural/socially constructed gender, however). Some schools of thought will consider Lucifer and Satan to be one side of the same being, with Lucifer representing the spiritual side and Satan representing the earthly side, in a similar manner to concepts such as the Trinity. Lucifer and Satan both share similarities and certainly have a number of connections, but whether you view them as the same or not depends on individual belief.

My point in bringing Lucifer up is to say that, in simplest terms, Lucifer is not a demon. He is traditionally considered a fallen angel, once the most glorious and favorite son of God prior to Christ (in fact, there are a number of connections you can look into comparing Lucifer and Christ, much like you can compare any number of figures to one another throughout the whole of religious history – just examine syncretism). Further, some accounts of Lucifer based in Gnostic tradition, which I follow more closely, put Lucifer as separate from being created by God. From here, it is important to understand that whether it be Lucifer or Satan, these figures are frequently associated with commanding demons but if you recall the former points I made about what exactly constitutes a demon, you’ll realize this does not mean that Lucifer and/or Satan are in charge of some sort of chaotic and bloodthirsty horde. Much like numerous archangels play a role in leading other angels/spirits, and much like there are fierce and powerful angels, there is a wide variety to be found in the legions of beings associated with demonology.

Another means of addressing the idea that demons are all just repugnant and frightening creatures is by studying grimoires and various occult works throughout history. If you are interested in learning about demons, the Ars Goetia, one of five books contained within the 17th century Lesser Key of Solomon, is perhaps the most major source of knowledge on the subject. The Lesser Key of Solomon, known either as Clavicula Salomonis Regis or Lemegeton contains 144 spells, and is separated into the Ars Goetia, Ars Theurgia-Goetia, Ars Paulina, Ars Almadel, and Ars Notoria. The Goetia is heavily inspired by the 1577 Pseudomonarchia Daemonum, which was written by Johann Weyer. Weyer’s work was incredibly thorough and well researched, providing a hierarchy of various demons (e.g. their ranking, their roles, etc) but it was technically written as a means of suggesting that witchcraft does not exist and instead is within the mind, possibly even suggestive of mental illness. At the time of writing this, this was actually a very progressive concept because of course, the typical response to things like witches and spirits was to call blasphemy and devil posession. Other works such as those of earlier occultists like Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa were also considered.

The Lesser Key of Solomon is decidely an “extension” of sorts of The Greater Key of Solomon, dating back to the 14th or 15th century and serving as one of the most crucial texts of Renaissance magic. Whereas the Lesser Key could be considered black magick (at least from a rudimentary perspective), The Greater Key deals more with angels and astrological work. Both texts are representative of King Solomon’s work in constructing his temple in Jerusalem in about 587AD; it is believed that Solomon utilized the spirits to aid in construction (the temple itself has also been argued to be a metaphorical construct, and various connections can be made to psychology or the highly spiritual concepts of Boaz and Jachin, which are important pillars – literally – in numerous faiths). From the Lesser Key, from drawings made by artists like Collin de Plancy and Eliphas Levi, and from the work of writers such as Weyer, you can get a better feel for the incredibly diverse range of demons. In the Goetia, there are 72 major demons (72 being quite an important number). The demons range from tall dark and handsome to horrific. The point is, the Goetia and the whole of demonology is a diverse melting pot that deserves to be studied. In fact, one of the literal translations of Goetia is “jugglery,” which to me indicates that there is a lot of information for those who are interested to play with; there is something to learn from each glance at its text.

With regards to physical appearance of demons, numerous magicians tend to agree on certain characteristics of the major spirits. Each demon has their own unique aesthetic, and it is the work of Jacques Collin de Plancy in particular which shows us their most well-known and popular depictions. Technically speaking, demons are capable of altering their form. In many cases, if the magician performing an evocation commands them to appear or speak in a more human-like form, they will. Some accounts such as those of James Donahue have linked Goetic demons to extraterrestrial sources, even. In more modern forms of magick such as chaos magic, there are ways to manifest/evoke spirits in dramatically differenet ways as well, but all of this depends on preference, ability, and the will of the spirit itself as well.

In any case, it is also important to dispell the notion that all demons are ugly and terrifying creatures. To prove this, researh descriptions of demons such as Stolas (he teaches astronomy and the knowledge of poisonous plants, herbs and precious stones) who is frequently seen as an owl. Caim is another great example, as he appears as a rather silly looking black bird (he is a good disputer, gives men the understanding of the voices of birds, dogs, and other creatures, and of the noise of the waters too, and gives true answers concerning things to come. Truthfully, “terror” is something subjective, as are things such as disgust and repulsion. If someone did not know anything of Christ and saw his corpse nailed to a cross, without the context, they may think it is a demonic symbol itself! And likewise, how a spirit of any kind appears and acts can largely vary in accordance to your mind, to your emotional state, and any number of factors. Sometimes when people have unpleasant experiences with spirits, whether they be demons or angels or anything else, it is possible that their mental state was negatively impacting the relationship; this creates ugliness in the physical and mental world, and is a testament to the fact that if you are trying to do spirit work, you must try and remain calm, collected, and confident in yourself and of course, respectful of the spirit.

Notice how, in any case, that the abilities and physical appereances are not alll that “demonic” in the sense that people are typically used to understanding. And what’s more, the way people commonly view demons is through very distinctly Westernized sources – there are demons in Eastern religions but what I mean specifically is that, the typical portraits of major demons such as Bael, Astaroth, etc. could have possibly looked much less “malignant” had they been constructed in different cultural landscapes; Bael is often depicted as having three heads but they are always shown as rather disgusting. Meanwhile, in Hinduism for instance, certain entities may have multiple heads and yet they have historically been portrayed as looking non-intimidating and far more colorful and psychedelic than Western versions. So it could all be a matter of perspective, and that especially holds true when you consider the Christian church is far more content with letting demons be, well, demonized (to the point of fear mongering and inciting “the flames of damnation” more than any other religion. And to the point of Eastern versus Western aesthetics, it could be very possible that people were having experiences with deities of the opposite faith/geographic location and because they did not understand, therein lies the panic and demonization.

Also, as far as the looks and temperment of demons go, the generalized idea in popular culture is to compare them to angels, but herein lies a bizarre matter: Angelic beings in the traditional sense are not all winged and haloed humanoid beings. Some of their descriptions, straight from the Bible for instance, have portrayed them as rather terrifying creatures. Much like the stories of people who withered away upon seeing the true face of Zeus, Ra, Vishnu, and other ancient deities, angels are complex beings with dramatic features that in some ways, overshadow the “flare” of many demons. Samael for instance has a “height… so great, it would have taken five hundred years to cover a distance equal to it.” The traditional understandings of angels and God as being associated with beauty and lightness is made all the more bizarre to know if you research the Gnostic perspective of the demiurge and Yaldabaoth (essentially the idea that the “God” who created the universe created us inside of a prison system, or that the demiurge represents the illusory and entrapping nature of the physical world, which is cut off from divinity).

What you need to understand with angelic beings and with God, is that just like demons, there can still be a danger in working with these forces because as humans, we posses limited understanding of realms beyond our immediate comprehension: Perform a spell the wrong way, do something heinous, misunderstandings, they could yield negative effects. Likewise, one of the most universally accepted rituals for accessing your guardian angel is an arduous process that takes a whopping 18 months (Aleister Crowley advocates that those who wish to partake in demonology first purify themselves and connect to their holy guardian angels before then diving into the Bornless Ritual, which serves as a gateway to the Ars Goetia).

In any case, I should clarify that I enjoy communing with spirits of all types - demonic, angelic, natural, etc - but my personal preference lies in demons because they are often easier to get in touch with, at least due to my own personal spiritual path. Demons can be thought of as subconscious manifestations of inner wants, desires, knowledge, or even the divinity of the higher self – they don’t have to be external entities that slither into your ears and whisper darkness into your mind. It’s also interesting to forge relationships with demons because it represents the idea of literally confronting your demons – confronting your fears and your psyche. In Buddhism, in the transitional phase of life and death, there may be demons awaiting. If you run and cower, you may be reincarnated in a less than favorable position. Similarly, in Nordic Paganism, the warrior mentality is encouraged in order to enter Valhalla. Even Christ himself faced much torment and madness upon being crucified. It’s an integral part of understanding who we are, our roles, our true wills, but we must learn to overcome fear.

You may be the judge of your own experiences, but I wrote this to help clear up some of the bad air circulating around this topic, and to help instill the idea that we should work in tandem with various cosmic forces, not just limit ourselves to “good” ones, because morality is a blurred line when dealing with matters that extend far beyond human existence and materialism. If you are interested in trying a quick exercise in demonology, my advice is to research demons and find one you like, then look up their demonic enn. A demonic enn is essentially an invitation, request, call, admiration, protection chant for a demon (their origins and their language is largely unknown but major sources include Alexander Willit in the 16th century). For me, if I am looking to get in touch with Lucifer, I will say “RENICH TASA UBERACA BIASA ICAR LUCIFER” which roughly is a protection and cleansing spell on the air around me, and is a means to further invoke Lucifer. You may try saying an enn a few times and see how it makes you feel, if you notice anything; meditate and say it aloud or in your mind (you may call forth a demon but more than anything, enns are meant to establish a rapport rather than necessarily being full scaled invocation or evocations).

Do not fear spirits, they are all around us, chances are they may be around you: Perhaps literally, perhaps figuratively. Awhile ago, I discovered that the word “alcohol” derives from the Arabic “Al-khul,” which translates into “body eating spirit” and is the origin of the term “ghoul.” Notice how when hard liquor is around, it is referred to as “spirits.” The point here is that by consuming alcohol, as a creation of industrialization and commercialization in mankind’s capitalistic state, you are willingly invoking spirits into yourself; the more you drink, the more they overtake your personality and behavior. This is why natural mind altering substances such as cannabis, LSA, San Pedro mescaline, and mushrooms are among the most healing and restorative mind-altering substances (because it can be argued they all possess direct linkage with nature, and more benevolent spirits); compared to alcohol which makes us experience zombie states of consciousness.

My point there is not to stay no to alcohol or non-naturally occurring substances, but to be aware of how they affect you and to make sure that you maintain a strong mind through studying, developing your spirituality and philosophy, honing your critical thinking abilities; make it so that if any dark forces try to contact you, you hang up the phone immediately; retain a strong will, a sense of knowledge and balance, and even if you’re attempting to summon the likes of Lucifuge Rofocale, you will then have the mental fortitude to handle the situation properly.

Magick is no joke. Beyond the nonsensical and cliche imagery of arrogant teenagers who go and draw blood and make circles and light sigils in the woods to dark forces, “just for fun,” there is also the fact that magick can be used to help us better understand our wills, our desires, our hearts, our chakras, our minds, the nature of the universe, who we are, etc. And again, magick is not purely supernatural, it has developed connections to modern science in numerous ways (for instance, the occult has played a role in the development of NASA, quantum physics connects deeply into the realm of metaphysics, it is reflected in psychology and neurology, and so forth). Crowley stated “magick is the Science of understanding oneself and one’s conditions. It is the Art of applying that understanding in action.” Everything is connected; as above, so below, the microcosm and the macrocosm, notice the similarities between all systems of philosophical, science, and spiritual thought and conjoin them to truly harness the will and beyond.

Addendum: I believe in the right for all those who are interested in the occult, in magick, in witchery, in Paganism, esoteric mysticism, etc. to be free to pursue whichever avenues of magick they deem appropriate for themselves, whether that means chaos magick, Enochian magick, or anything else out there. This also includes the right for practitioners to perform black magick as they see fit. In accordance to left-hand-path principles, black magick is a valid option to consider so long as you know what you are doing and can use it carefully.

anonymous asked:

I'm a bit confused as to how the Inanna (the holy daugher) could be referred to as "zoe" since zoe means life, and life, the crystal tablet tells us, is the virtue of absolute deity and love is the virtue of the Inanna. It's fine to call her zoe, but I don't realy see why? Rayati.

Rayati.

I come from a Gnostic Christian background. In the Sophian view of the Trinity; Barbelo is the Great Mother, Sophia is the Celestial Mother and Zoe is the Daughter. In the Nag Hammadi texts, or the ‘Gnostic gospels’, She is born from Sophia without a father and descends into the body of Eve. She then kisses Adam and wakes him up from a deep sleep, which is a metaphor for a spiritual awakening. He calls Her ‘mother of the living’ and all the divine sparks that exist within creation is said to come from Her. In this role, Zoe acts as the essence of Sophia who bridges the soul of humanity back to God. This is the Sophian understanding of the role of the Holy Daughter, as well as Her sacrifice, which is also something Zoe undertakes in her Gnostic origins when she wilfully experiences the ‘fall’ - it is not a mistake like in traditional understanding but a parallel to Her act in the Holy Mythos of descending into hell and shattering Her soul for the sake of creation.

This is just part of my own interpretation, it’s fine if other Deanists have different thoughts on it. I’ve known the Daughter as Zoe for so long that it’s difficult for me to call Her something else. It’s for similar reasons I call the Celestial Mother Sophia instead of Mari. In most Deanic circles, Sophia would be known in her Jana form (Kyria Metis, as I call her), but I have connected to Her as the Mother Spirit for so long whereas I never had that connection with ‘Mary’.

It is personal comfort for the most part, but maybe I’m the only one who can see the links between Gnostic mythology and the Holy Mythos once the patriarchal and misogynistic implications are removed. That’s fine, I’m not attempting to form any other ‘tradition’ other than my own.

I watch a lot of documentaries. I think they are incredible tools for learning and increasing our awareness of important issues. The power of an interesting documentary is that it can open our minds to new possibilities and deepen our understanding of the world.

On this list of mind expanding documentaries you will find different viewpoints, controversial opinions and even contradictory ideas. Critical thinking is recommended. I’m not a big fan of conspiracy documentaries but I do like films that challenge consensus reality and provoke us to question the everyday ideas, opinions and practices we usually take for granted.

Watching documentaries is one of my favorite methods of self-education. If I find a documentary inspiring, I usually spend more time researching the different ideas and interesting people interviewed in the film. I hope you find these documentaries as enlightening as I did!

[1] Life In The Biosphere

Explore the wonder and interconnectedness of the biosphere through the magic of technology.

Home
How Many People Can Live on Planet Earth
The Magical Forest
Ants: Nature’s Secret Power
Mt. Everest: How It Was Made
Mariana’s Trench: The Deepest Spot On Earth
Natural World: The Andes
Shining Mountains: The Rockies
Grand Canyon: How It Was Made
The Intelligence of Plants

[2] Creativity and Design:Advertisements

Learn about all the amazing things that people create with their imaginations.

Everything Is A Remix
The Creative Brain: How Insight Works
Design: The New Business
PressPausePlay: Art and Creativity in the Digital Age
Infamy: A Graffiti Documentary
Influencers: How Trends and Creativity Become Contagious
RIP: A Remix Manifesto
Design: e² – Sustainable Architecture
The Genius Of Design

[3] The Education Industrial Complex:

The modern school where young minds are moulded into standardized citizens by the state.

The College Conspiracy
Declining by Degrees: Higher Education at Risk
The Forbidden Education
Default: The Student Loan Documentary
College Inc.
Education For A Sustainable Future
Networked Society: The Future of Learning
The Ultimate History Lesson With John Taylor Gatto
The Education System in Communist China
The War On Kids

[4] The Digital Revolution:

The Internet is now the driving force behind change and innovation in the world.

The Age of Big Data
Resonance: Beings of Frequency
Life In A Day
Networked Society: On The Brink
Us Now: Social Media and Mass Collaboration
WikiRebels: The WikiLeaks Story
The Virtual Revolution: The Cost of Free
How Hackers Changed the World

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[5] A New Civilization:

We are at the dawn of a new golden age of human inventiveness.

THRIVE: What On Earth Will It Take?
Zeitgeist III: Moving Forward
Paradise or Oblivion
2012: Time For Change
The Crisis of Civilization
The Collective Evolution II
The Quickening: Awakening As One
2012 Crossing Over: A New Beginning
Collapse
The Awakening

[6] Politics:

Explore the politics of power and control and how it affects your life.

Owned and Operated
UnGrip
The Power Principle
The True Story of Che Guevara
Earth Days
Capitalism Is The Crisis
WikiLeaks: The Secret Life of a Superpower
The Putin System
The War On Democracy
Rise Like Lions: Occupy Wall Street and the Seeds of Revolution

[7] Biographies of Genius:

The biographies of modern geniuses who pushed humanity forward.

Isaac Newton: The Last Magician
The Unlimited Energy of Nikola Tesla
The Missing Secrets Of Nikola Tesla
Richard Feynman: No Ordinary Genius
How Albert Einstein’s Brain Worked
The Extraordinary Genius of Albert Einstein
Leonardo Da Vinci: The Man Who Wanted to Know Everything

[8] War:

War is history’s oldest racket for stealing from the powerless and redistributing resources to the powerful.

Psywar: The Real Battlefield Is Your Mind
The Secret History of 9/11
Robot Armies in the Future
The Never Ending War in Afghanistan
Shadow Company: Mercenaries In The Modern World
Why We Fight
The Fog Of War
The Oil Factor: Behind The War On Terror

[9] Economics:

Learn about the financial system works and how people and societies are enslaved through debt.

The Corporation: The Pathological Pursuit of Profit and Power
Overdose: The Next Financial Crisis
The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of The World
The One Percent
Quants: The Alchemists of Wall Street
The Last Days Of Lehman Brothers
The Four Horsemen
Inside Job: The Biggest Robbery In Human History
Capitalism A Love Story
Money and Life

[10] Digital Entrepreneurship:

Profiles of the entrepreneurs who used technology to change the world.

The Life Of A Young Entrepreneur
Profile: Google’s Larry Page and Sergey Brin
Profile: Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg
Starting-Up in America
Steve Jobs: One Last Thing
Steve Jobs: The Billion Dollar Hippy
Elon Musk: Risk Takers
The Story of Twitter

[11] Sports:

Watch the inspiring stories of amazing athletes.

Fearless: The Jeb Corliss Story
Carts of Darkness
Usain Bolt: The World’s Fastest Man
Wayne Gretzky: The Life and Times
Mike Tyson: Beyond the Glory
Birdmen
The Legacy Of Michael Jordan
We Ride: The Story of Snowboarding

[12] Technology:

Find out more about the impact of exponential growth and the approaching Singularity.

Ray Kurzweil: The Transcendent Man
How Robots Will Change the World
Human 2.0
Trance-Formation: The Future of Humanity
The Venus Project: Future By Design
Bionics, Transhumanism And The End Of Evolution
The Singularity Is Near
Car Technology Of The Future

[13] Origins of Religion:

Explore the original religious experience of mankind at the dawn of civilization.

Entheogen: Awakening the Divine Within
Manifesting the Mind: Footprints of the Shaman
Ancient Egypt and The Alternative Story of Mankind’s Origins
The Hidden Knowledge of the Supernatural
Re-Awaken: Open Your Heart, Expand Your Mind
Shamans of the Amazon
The Root of All Evil: The God Delusion
Ancient Knowledge
The Naked Truth
Before Babel: In Search of the First Language

[14] Western Religion:

The fascinating history of the three Abrahamic religions: Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

Secret Quest: The Path of the Christian Gnostics
The Secret Gate of Eden
Forbidden Knowledge: Lost Secrets of the Bible
Banned From The Bible: Secrets Of The Apostles
The Road To Armageddon
Muhammad: The Legacy of a Prophet
A Complete History of God
Gnosis: The Untold History of the Bible

[15] Eastern Religion:

Expand your mind by also studying the entirely different religious worldviews of the East.

Inner Worlds, Outer Worlds
The Life Of The Buddha
The Seven Wonders of the Buddhist World
Mysteries of the Cosmic OM: Ancient Vedic Science
Where Science and Buddhism Meet
The Yogis of Tibet
Taj Mahal: Secrets To Blow Your Mind
Light at the Edge of the World: Tibetan Science of the Mind
Myths of Mankind: The Mahabharata
Ayurveda: The Art of Being

[16] Consciousness:

Learn about the basic unity of existence and the miracle of consciousness.

Athene’s Theory of Everything
Theory of Everything: GOD, Devils, Dimensions, Dragons & The Illusion of Reality
The God Within: Physics, Cosmology and Consciousness
5 Gateways: The Five Key Expansions of Consciousness
Return to the Source: Philosophy and The Matrix
The Holographic Universe
DMT: The Spirit Molecule
Kymatica
Neuroplasticity: The Brain That Changes Itself

[17] Mysteries:

Indiana Jones-style explorations into the unsolved mysteries of the past.

Alchemy: Sacred Secrets Revealed
The Day Before Disclosure
The Pyramid Code
The Secret Design of the Egyptian Pyramids
Decoding the Past: Secrets of the Dollar Bill
Origins of the Da Vinci Code
Forbidden Knowledge: Ancient Medical Secrets
Secret Mysteries of America’s Beginnings: The New Atlantis
Secrets in Plain Sight

[18] Mass Culture:

Learn about how our thoughts and opinions are influenced by mass culture.

The Century of the Self
All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace
The Power Of Nightmares
Starsuckers: A Culture Obsessed By Celebrity
Human Resources: Social Engineering in the 20th Century
Obey: The Death of the Liberal Class
Motivational Guru: The Story of Tony Robbins
Bob Marley: Freedom Road
Radiant City

[19] Corporate Media:

Discover how the mass media and advertisers channel our irrational impulses.

Weapons of Mass Deceptions
Secrets of the Superbrands
Orwell Rolls in his Grave
The Esoteric Agenda
Propaganda
The Myth of the Liberal Media: The Propaganda Model of News
Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media
Symbolism in Logos: Subliminal Messages or Ancient Archetypes
Edward Snowden: A Truth Unveiled
Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch’s War on Journalism

[20] Art and Literature:

Explore the lives of famous artists and how art opens people’s minds.

Cosm: Alex Gray’s Visionary Art
Banksy’s Exit Through The Gift Shop
New Art and the Young Artists Behind It
Salvador Dali: A Master of the Modern Era
The Day Pictures Were Born
Off-Book: Digital Age Creativity
This Is Modern Art

[21] Health:

Explore issues in health, how our bodies work and the incredible power of our brains.

The Human Brain
The Truth About Vitamins
How To Live To 101
America’s Obesity Epidemic
The War On Health
The Beautiful Truth
Food Inc.
The Truth About Food
The Living Matrix

[22] Drugs:

Documentaries on the effect of drugs — legal and illegal — on the body and mind.

The Union: The Business Behind Getting High
The Drugging Of Our Children
How Marijuana Affects Your Health
Making a Killing: The Untold Story of Psychotropic Drugging
Clearing the Smoke: The Science of Cannabis
LSD: The Beyond Within
The War on Drugs: The Prison Industrial Complex
Are Illegal Drugs More Dangerous Than Legal Drugs?
The Prescription Drug Abuse Epidemic
Run From The Cure: The Rick Simpson Story

[23] Environment:

Thought-provoking documentaries on the environmental movement and the growing threats to our biosphere.

Earthlings
Blue Gold: World Water Wars
Shift: Beyond the Numbers of the Climate Crisis
All Things Are Connected
The Fight For Amazonia
Flow: For Love Of Water
Here Comes the Sun
The World According To Monsanto
The Story of Stuff

[24] Cosmos:

Expand your mind by exploring our indescribably large and beautiful Cosmos.

The Search for Planets Similar to Earth
Cosmic Journeys : The Largest Black Holes in the Universe
The Mystery of the Milky Way
Fractals: The Hidden Dimension
Into The Universe With Stephen Hawking: The Story of Everything
Pioneer Science: Discovering Deep Space
Carl Sagan’s Cosmos
The Strangest Things In The Universe

[25] Science:

The history of scientific discovery and how scientific instruments expand our perception.

The Complete History of Science
Secret Universe: The Hidden Life of the Cell
Stephen Hawking: A Brief History of Time
Quantum Mechanics: Fabric of the Cosmos
The Light Fantastic
DNA: The Secret of Life
Parallel Universes, Alternative Timelines & Multiverse
What Is The Higgs Boson?
Infinity

[26] Evolution:

The story of our evolution and the emergence of self-aware human beings.

The Origin of Life
Homo Sapiens: The Birth of Humanity
Beyond Me
The Global Brain
Metanoia: A New Vision of Nature
Birth Of A New Humanity
Samsara
Ape Man: Adventures in Human Evolution
The Incredible Human Journey
The Human Family Tree

[27] Psychology and The Brain:

New research is shining a spotlight on how we can improve our brains.

How Smart Can We Get?
The Science of Lust
The Secret You
What Are Dreams?
A Virus Called Fear
Beyond Thought (Awareness Itself)
The Human Brain
Superconscious Mind: How To Double Your Brain’s Performance
How Does Your Memory Work?
Secrets of the Mind

[28] Modern History:

The story of the Enlightenment, the Industrial Revolution and the rise of the modern world.

History of the World in Two Hours
The Industrial Revolution
The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich
The French Revolution
Big Sugar
The American Revolution

[29] Pre-Modern History:

The story of the Americas and European history in the pre-modern world.

Socrates, Aristotle and Plato
The Medici: The Most Influencial Family In The World
A History of Celtic Britain
The Crusades: Victory and Defeat
The Vikings: Voyage To America
Copernicus and the Scientific Revolution

[30] Current Events:

Become more informed about current events that are shaping the world.

Syria: The Reckoning
Empire: Putin’s Russia
The New Arms Race
The Killing of Yasser Arafat
Egypt In Crisis
Inside Obama’s Presidency
The Untouchables: How Obama Protected Wall Street
Behind The Rhetoric: The Real Iran
A History of the Middle East since WWII
Climate Wars

[31] Ancient Civilizations:

Fascination explorations into the ancient civilizations of our past.

The Persian Empire : Most Mysterious Civilization in the Ancient World
What The Ancients Did For Us
What the Ancients Knew
Egypt: Beyond the Pyramids
Secrets of the Ancient Empires
Graham Hancock’s Quest For The Lost Civilization
Atlantis: The Lost Continent
Seven Wonders of the Ancient World

I hope you enjoy watching some of these mind expanding documentaries! If you have a personal favorite, please share it with everyone in the comments.

Credits: DIY Genius

God As Mother — The Feminine Divine in the World Scriptures and Spiritual Classics


As one whom his mother comforts,
so will I comfort you;
You shall be comforted in Jerusalem.
(Hebrew Bible, Isaiah 66.13)

Wisdom (Sophia) cries out in the street;
in the squares she raises her voice…
(Book of Proverbs, 1:20, Hebrew Bible)

Just now my mother, the Holy Spirit, took me by one of my hairs and brought me to Tabor, the great mountain.
(Jesus in, The Gospel of the Hebrews. Note: “ruach” is a Hebrew word for spirit and is feminine)

I rested on the Spirit of the Lord, and She lifted me up to heaven. (Odes of Solomon, 36: 1, James Charlesworth translation, Jewish Christian psalms)

A cup of milk was offered to me, and I drank it in the sweetness of
the Lord’s kindness.
The Son is the cup, and the Father is He who was milked; and the Holy
Spirit is She who milked Him;
Because His breasts were full, and it was undesirable that His milk
should be ineffectually released.
The Holy Spirit opened Her bosom, and mixed the milk of the two
breasts of the Father.
Then She gave the mixture to the generation without their knowing,
and those who have received it are in the perfection of the right
hand.
The womb of the Virgin took it, and she received conception and gave
birth.
So the Virgin became a mother with great mercies.
And she labored and bore the Son but without pain, because it did not
occur without purpose.
And she did not require a midwife, because He caused her to give life.
(Odes of Solomon, 19: 1–9, James Charlesworth translation, Jewish Christian psalms)

Three powers came forth from him; they are the Father, the Mother, (and) the Son, from the living silence, what came forth from the incorruptible Father. These came forth from the silence of the unknown Father.
(Gospel of the Egyptians, Gnostic Gospel, Nag Hammadi Library)

Behold, I have revealed to you the name of the Perfect One, the whole will of the Mother of the Holy Angels, that the masculine multitude may be completed here, that there might appear in the aeons, the infinities and those that came to be in the untraceable wealth of the Great Invisible Spirit….
(The Book of the Sophia of Jesus Christ, Gnostic Gospel, Nag Hammadi Library)

For I am the first and the last.
I am the honored one and the scorned one.
I am the whore and the holy one.
I am the wife and the virgin.
I am the mother and the daughter.
I am the members of my mother.
I am the barren one
and many are her sons.
I am she whose wedding is great,
and I have not taken a husband.
I am the midwife and she who does not bear.
I am the solace of my labor pains.
I am the bride and the bridegroom,
and it is my husband who begot me.
I am the mother of my father
and the sister of my husband
and he is my offspring.
I am the slave of him who prepared me.
I am the ruler of my offspring.
But he is the one who begot me before the time on a birthday.
And he is my offspring in (due) time,
and my power is from him.
I am the staff of his power in his youth,
and he is the rod of my old age.
And whatever he wills happens to me.
I am the silence that is incomprehensible
and the idea whose remembrance is frequent.
I am the voice whose sound is manifold
and the word whose appearance is multiple.
I am the utterance of my name……..
I am the hearing that is attainable to everything;
I am the speech that cannot be grasped.
I am the name of the sound
and the sound of the name.
(Thunder, Perfect Mind, Gnostic Gospel, Nag Hammadi Library)


The Radhasoami Faith recognizes three Grand Personages and a sincere and affectionate disciple the fourth, namely,


1. The Supreme Father,


2. The Supreme Mother or Original Spirit or Word Current emanating from the Supreme Father,


3. The Supreme Son or Sant Sat Guru, the representative of the Supreme Father in human form.


4. The disciple or the son or human spirit.
(“Radhasoami Mat Prakash” by Huzur Maharaj Rai Salig Ram, Sant Mat and Radhasoami, India)


I am Father and Mother of the world.
Bhagavad Gita 9.17, Hindu)


I’m Thy child O Thou, my Father and Mother!
(Adi Granth, Sikh and Sant Mat)

Thou art Father, Mother, Friend, Brother.
With Thee as succorer in all places, what fear have I?
(Adi Granth, Sikh and Sant Mat)

That breast of Thine which is inexhaustible, health-giving, by which Thou nursest all that is noble, containing treasure, bearing wealth, bestowed freely; lay that bare, Sarasvati [divine Mother], for our nurture.
(Rig Veda 1.164.49, Hinduism)

Love, the divine Principle, is the Father and Mother of the universe, including man.
(Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, Christian Science)

Mother Earth have pity on us and give us food to eat! Father, the Sun, bless all our children and may our paths be straight!
(Native American Religions. Blackfoot Prayer)

O Mother of Imupa, advocate for the whole [feminine] world!
What a remarkable Mother I have!
O Mother, a pillar, a refuge!
O Mother, to whom all prostrate in greeting
Before one enters her habitation!
I am justly proud of my Mother.
O Mother who arrives,
Who arrives majestic and offers water to all!
(African Traditional Religions. Yoruba Prayer, Nigeria)

The Valley Spirit never dies.
It is named the Mysterious Female.
And the Doorway of the Mysterious Female
Is the base from which sprang Heaven and Earth.
It is there within us all the while;
Draw upon it as you will, it never runs dry.
(Tao Te Ching 6, Taoism)

Divine Mother, with the language of my soul I demand realization of Thy presence. Thou art the essence of everything. Make me see Thee in every fiber of my being, in every wisp of thought. Awaken my heart!

Divine Mother, open wide the bud of my devotion and release its fragrance, that it may spread from my soul to the souls of all others, ever whispering of Thee.

Divine Mother, I have heard Thy voice whispering in the fragrance of the rose. I touched Thy tenderness in the softness of the lily. In the whispers of my devotion, it was Thy love that answered.

In the temple of my earthly mother’s love I will worship the incarnated love of the Divine Mother.

Cosmic Mother, take this darkness away! When I sit with eyes closed, enveloped in self-created shadows, cause Thou to blaze upon me in splendor the aurora of intuition.

In the hall of creation, 0 Divine Mother, everywhere I hear the rhythm of Thy foot-steps, dancing wildly in the booming thunder and softly in the song of atoms.

I laugh at all fears, for my Father-Mother, beloved God, is attentively awake and present everywhere with the deliberate purpose of protecting me from the temptations of evil.
(verses from, Metaphysical Meditations, by Paramhansa Yogananda, SRF Books)

The thundering resonance of the Word
has liberated me while living -
Now I am entitled to serve the Lord!
How can I ever repay you, 0 my benefactor?
You are my Mother, you are my Father,
you are my generous Lord.
(Sant Namdev)

TO YOU the Lord we pray.
Soul and body are your gifts to us.
You are the Mother, and the Father,
We are your children,
With your grace,
There are countless blessings.
(Guru Arjan, Adi Granth, Sukhmani Sahib)

With hands joined in prayer
I beseech you, Radhasoami,
to listen to my supplication.
You are the true Lord, my benevolent Master!
You are Father, you are Mother,
you are the Creator of all beings.
Be merciful to me, accept me
and set me free from the snare of Kal.
(Swami Ji Maharaj, Sar Bachan Poetry)

Thou art my beloved Mother,
Thou art my only shelter;
I long for Thee,
I await Thy arrival, 0 Lord.
Thou alone art my Father,
Thou alone my loving Son,
Thou art my closest Friend and Relative.
My heart and my soul I lay
At Thy lotus feet, 0 Lord.
The whole creation without Thee,
Says Tuka is a barren desert.
(Sant Tukarama, Gatha. 2607)

Thou art our kind and affectionate Mother, O God, and bearest all our burdens. We know no fear, nor any anxiety……I cannot know the night from day, and the unceasing illumination exists at all times.
(Sant Tukarama)

Thou art our merciful Mother, O Vitthala, a shadow to thy suppliant; the milk of love ever flows in thy breast, thy sight is pure and sweet as nectar. O Mother Vitthala is like a cool shadow; her breast is ever filled with love; seated in her lap I shall seek her bosom and drink as much as I desire. 0 yield the milk of thy mercy and nourish my frame; a stream of nectar flows from thee. My spirit cannot contain this joy; what is the whole sea compared to it?
(Sant Tukarama)

Tagged: god, goddess, mother, feminine, holy spirit, world scriptures, old testament, hebrew bible, wisdom, sophia, magdalene, gnostic, nag hammadi library, ruach, odes of solomon, sant mat, radhasoami, bhagavad gita, buddhism, hinduism, adi granth, sikh, rig veda, Mary Baker Eddy, ellen white, native american, blackfoot prayer, tao, tao te ching, yogananda,

  • me: *tells mom im a christian again*
  • mom: so you won't be disappearing in the middle of the night to go pray to trees!
  • me: no... still gonna be doing that
  • mom: ...
  • mom: but youre done with all the witchcraft stuff?
  • me: also no... if anything it has amplified
  • mom: ...
  • mom: I don't understand...
  • me: "Those who seek should not stop seeking until they find. When they find, they will be disturbed. When they are disturbed, they will marvel, and will reign over all" (Gospel of Thomas)
When Our Lady drew near unto death, she called her disciples to her. She spoke softly to them and blessed each and every one of them. To each she gave her heart advice, and then she said to them, “Now it is time for you to learn how to die and to depart from the fear of death once and for all.” Our Lady said, “My Mother, into the grace of your womb I surrender my spirit.” In this way, calmly and with grace, Our Lady shed the body.
—  “Death of Mary Magdalene”, Secret Gospel of St. Mary by Tau Malachi.

anonymous asked:

what was the name of the early christian heresy that believed that the god of the old testament was literally evil and that jesus and the god he served was an unrelated diety opposed to the evil old testament god

There was more than one. What you described is most like the theology of the Marcionites who were followers of Marcion of Sinope. For Marcionites Jesus was the son of the “Heavenly Father”, the true God of pure spirit who is actually wholly disconnected from the material world due to his infinitely perfect purity (hence the necessity of Jesus to deliver the message of true religion) while the God of the Old Testament was the creator of the material world and thus of all the evils and suffering associated with material life. Marcion even apparently believed that this evil God was himself made of matter and pointed to a passage from Genesis where God is said to walk through Eden as proof that he also was a limited material being albeit one which had immense power. One interesting fact in religious history is that Marcion of Sinope was actually responsible for creating the first Christian Bible, consisting of an edited version of the Gospel of Luke (while the study of early Christian sects is something utterly rife with bias and unreliable narrators the orthodox account of Marcion editing Luke is probably true given how radically divergent surviving fragments are and the seemingly deliberate removal of anything that could be construed as a positive reference to the God of Judaism) as well as a collection of Pauline epistles. 

 Its also a recurring motif in Christian Gnosticism but there’s important and subtle differences between the Gnostics and Marcionites. For one, Marcionism had in common with mainline Christianity an emphasis on salvation through faith while with Gnosticism its more about reaching a state of “Gnosis” or enlightenment more or less. While both were influenced by Hellenistic Neoplatonism  with Gnosticism it was much more total and actually more accurate to say Gnosticism was a branch of Neoplatonism. This matters because with early Christian Gnostics such as the Valentinians (who are the most well known and were the most popular) it was not that the “Old Testament God” (or ‘Demiurge’) was “evil” in the conventional sense or in Marcion’s sense but rather that the Demiurge was “inferior” to the true God. In Neoplatonic philosophy what is called “evil” is not a presence but rather an absence or lack of the good and true. The Demiurge created a material world of suffering not out of sadistic malice like Marcion believed but because he is a lower and inferior being to true Divinity. From what I can recall “pagan” Neoplatonism actually often held back from describing the Demiurge in moralistic terms at all because it could not be blamed for creating an inferior world of falsehood because the Demiurge itself is an inferior being ignorant of its own nature. 

Other Gnostic sects such as the Ophites had a more complicated relationship to the “OT”. The Ophites  believed the snake of Eden was the first being sent by the good divinity Sophia (I’m not about to get into what exactly “Sophia” means in Gnosticism) to liberate humanity from the shackles of her estranged son Yaldabaoth, creator of the material world. In addition to Jesus they believed figures like Moses also preached the true religion and pointed to the episode of the bronze serpant as a sign that Moses actually revered the serpent of Eden hence the name “Ophites”, which comes from the Greek word for ‘snake’ (they also apparently had a thing for snake imagery). Marcionism otoh was very clear and explicit about its total rejection of Judaism and saw the OT as simply being the true record of the crimes and evils of the God depicted in it. The contrast with Marcionism here is that Marcion was explicitly antagonistic towards the Jewish scriptures which isnt necessarily the case with all Christian Gnostics and some Christian Gnostic sects may themselves have emerged from Jewish Gnostic sects.

Now there were Christian Gnostics that did strongly believe the God of the Old Testament was malicious and evil but they werent the majority early on it seems. Over time Gnosticism seems to have become more antagonistic towards the Old Testament as it began to be distanced from the Neoplatonist tradition and probably influenced by not just Marcionism but other dualistic Near Eastern religious movements in Zurvanism (a Zoroastrian sect that had a pessimistic view of the world wherein the evil Ahriman was equal in strength to his brother Ahura Mazda), Manicheanism etc so that when you get to the medieval Gnostic Christianity of the Bogomils or Cathars there is a stronger identification of the OT with evil.

anyway im not an expert on this but i find early christian heresies a really interesting thing

A woman said to Mary, “It is not my destiny to attain salvation, for it is not in the stars for me. The stars of my birth are ill-fated.”

Mary said, “It is not the stars that determine your fate, my sister. It is the Mother Spirit. According to the stars of her birth, Sarah was not destined to have a son, yet the Mother Spirit blessed Sarah and she had Isaac. If you have faith and seek true knowledge, you will not be bound by the fates that sin and the archons dictate, for in the Risen Savior your soul is exalted beyond the domains of the archons and the celestial regions. Believe in God, not in the abodes of the archons, and the Mother Spirit will fulfill your heart’s desire. Your destiny is with Christ in God.”

—  Secret Gospel of Mary Magdalene, 39.