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I would like all those(especially X-tians) who are comfortable with Santa, X-mas trees, the Easter Bunny ect. to really analyze and comment on why they are comfortable with the inundation of pre-X-tian European symbols and practices(These things are NOT secular) yet are petrified of all things that are pre-X-tian and African.(In particular West African...I notice a lot of us are comfy with Nile Valley symbolism, yet shun Voudun/Yoruba symbolism/practices/beliefs ect. IMO this is largely because of the Biblical/historical ties)

I have my own thoughts on the subject, but I would like to see what those who actually do this are thinking.
Egungun, Egungun ni t'aiye ati jo! Ancestos, Ancestors come to earth and dance! "I'm sick of the war and the civilization that created it. Let's look to our dreams, and the magical; to the creations of the so-called primitive peoples for new inspirations." - Jaques Vache and Andre Breton "Capitalism is the astounding belief that the most wickedest of men will do the most wickedest of things for the greatest good of everyone." -John Maynard "You know that in our country there were even matriarchal societies where women were the most important element. On the Bijagos islands they had queens. They were not queens because they were the daughters of kings. They had queens succeeding queens. The religious leaders were women too..." -- Amilcar Cabral, Return to the Source, 1973
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Hey!! Maybe we can get Jessie Lee Peterson to speak on this topic since he has a hard-on for/against Kwanzaa! Smile

Can you imagine that BOND brother going up to his White audience talking about how Santa and Christmas with Trees & Reindeer are all "made up" making sure to track any unsavory behavior of any person influential in making Christmas a holiday with the symbols used?

Do you think he uses the King James version of the Bible? I mean, he is a Reverend, you know... Big Grin
quote:
Originally posted by Oshun Auset:
I would like all those(especially X-tians) who are comfortable with Santa, X-mas trees, the Easter Bunny ect. to really analyze and comment on why they are comfortable with the inundation of pre-X-tian European symbols and practices(These things are NOT secular) yet are petrified of all things that are pre-X-tian and African.(In particular West African...I notice a lot of us are comfy with Nile Valley symbolism, yet shun Voudun/Yoruba symbolism/practices/beliefs ect. IMO this is largely because of the Biblical/historical ties)

I have my own thoughts on the subject, but I would like to see what those who actually do this are thinking.

I can't speak to the first part, cause I ain't that kind of Xian Wink.

I am more fascinated, however, in your second observation. Why is there all this obsession with Egypt or some primordial/archaic black presence in China, Central America, or Scotland Roll Eyes . As you note, most of us can trace our ancestory to West Africa. For me, that is a more credible location for investigation as to what it means to be African and American, or to use Paul Gilroy's heuristic of diaspora, members of the Black Atlantic.
The West African Kings (Mali and Songhai empires) are the ones who sold their enemies as slaves to America. Their religion was mainly Islam. The people they sold....worshiped the God in Heaven. Yep, you're a descendants of the 12 tribes of Israel.

So, its not for us (Blacks born in America) to do the rituals of West Africa because we didn't do them when we lived there. And I AGREE that Christianity has adopted several pagan rituals, which is one of the reasons this country is starting to decline morally.
quote:
Originally posted by DivineJoy:
So, its not for us (Blacks born in America) to do the rituals of West Africa because we didn't do them when we lived there. And I AGREE that Christianity has adopted several pagan rituals, which is one of the reasons this country is starting to decline morally.


You believe that Pagainism is the reason of "moral decline"?

How has this country "morally declined"? Was there a time when it was better?
quote:
Originally posted by DivineJoy:
The West African Kings (Mali and Songhai empires) are the ones who sold their enemies as slaves to America. Their religion was mainly Islam. The people they sold....worshiped the God in Heaven. Yep, you're a descendants of the 12 tribes of Israel.

May I ask, what empirical data (historical, anthropological, or archaeological) you have to substantiate such a claim? To my knowledge, the scholarship simply does not support such a claim, whether we are talking about the research of Albert Raboteau, John Blassingame, Yvonne Chireau, Riggins Earl, or the older work of Mays, Du Bois, Herskovits, Frazier, et al.
quote:
Originally posted by Empty Purnata:
You believe that Pagainism is the reason of "moral decline"?

How has this country "morally declined"? Was there a time when it was better?


Individuals make a country. Individuals in this country have changed morally over the years because less emphasis is given toward pleasing God, and more on pleasure. Lying, homosexuality, rape, theft, murder, etc.

Although this things existed in the past, they are more commonplace now.
quote:
Originally posted by kresge:
quote:
Originally posted by DivineJoy:
The West African Kings (Mali and Songhai empires) are the ones who sold their enemies as slaves to America. Their religion was mainly Islam. The people they sold....worshiped the God in Heaven. Yep, you're a descendants of the 12 tribes of Israel.

May I ask, what empirical data (historical, anthropological, or archaeological) you have to substantiate such a claim? To my knowledge, the scholarship simply does not support such a claim, whether we are talking about the research of Albert Raboteau, John Blassingame, Yvonne Chireau, Riggins Earl, or the older work of Mays, Du Bois, Herskovits, Frazier, et al.


I believe you have asked me this question before. There are documentaries out about West Africans asking for forgiveness because they feel the slave trade by their forefathers is the reason for all the woes of Africa.

Both were by NOVA.
quote:
Originally posted by DivineJoy:
quote:
Originally posted by kresge:
quote:
Originally posted by DivineJoy:
The West African Kings (Mali and Songhai empires) are the ones who sold their enemies as slaves to America. Their religion was mainly Islam. The people they sold....worshiped the God in Heaven. Yep, you're a descendants of the 12 tribes of Israel.

May I ask, what empirical data (historical, anthropological, or archaeological) you have to substantiate such a claim? To my knowledge, the scholarship simply does not support such a claim, whether we are talking about the research of Albert Raboteau, John Blassingame, Yvonne Chireau, Riggins Earl, or the older work of Mays, Du Bois, Herskovits, Frazier, et al.


I believe you have asked me this question before. There are documentaries out about West Africans asking for forgiveness because they feel the slave trade by their forefathers is the reason for all the woes of Africa.

Both were by NOVA.

There may be people who believe this, or who try to make some kind of causal connection between such events. That does not make it true. More importantly, I seriously doubt there is a claim that the enslaved where members of the 12 tribes of Israel. That is what I find at the very least problematic about your assertion. If you have citations to respected scholarship that substantiates such a claim, I would be more than welcome to amend my opinion.
quote:
Originally posted by DivineJoy:
quote:
Originally posted by Empty Purnata:
You believe that Pagainism is the reason of "moral decline"?

How has this country "morally declined"? Was there a time when it was better?


Individuals make a country. Individuals in this country have changed morally over the years because less emphasis is given toward pleasing God, and more on pleasure. Lying, homosexuality, rape, theft, murder, etc.

Although this things existed in the past, they are more commonplace now.


I would disagree, nothing has changed. You just have more access to hearing about these kinds of things now. In the past, these kinds of things were kept on DL when they happened because of shame culture in more Puritanical society.

Now, they are aired out into the open for everyone to see.

The 1950's were no more moral than now, Christian men and women had no problem hanging their Black Christian brethren and sisters. They had no problem promoting nuking non-White countries and had no problem killing Communists for God and Country.

People's minds were never on "pleasing God", they were MONEY. Money has always been America's God.

I can't believe that you, as an African-American, think that people were more "moral" in the past considering how terrible the past has been for us. Christians commit sin just like everyone else, many of these people doing bad things now are Christians.


And yes, I know the whole "Oh, but 'true Christians' don't to this and that" argument, but if that is so, then you could say every Christian is not really a Christian because all Christians do something messed in their lifetime, and continue to do so.

As Jesus said, "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone."
quote:
Originally posted by DivineJoy:
The West African Kings (Mali and Songhai empires) are the ones who sold their enemies as slaves to America. Their religion was mainly Islam. The people they sold....worshiped the God in Heaven. Yep, you're a descendants of the 12 tribes of Israel.

So, its not for us (Blacks born in America) to do the rituals of West Africa because we didn't do them when we lived there. And I AGREE that Christianity has adopted several pagan rituals, which is one of the reasons this country is starting to decline morally.


I usually avoid this kind of thing but this is so completely misinformed I had to write something. I am really tired of folks speaking of xtianity,whose text most of them do not understand, speaking or writing of rituals about which they understand even less.

The 12 tribes of "is it real" have no african relevance at all. Before you speak on our rituals at least study something about what you profess beyond "pastor preached it in church on sunday". Before there was an abraham or a jacob, before there was a muhammad, before buddah was even thought about, YOUR ancestors already had a religious science so deep that modern scholarship is still unable to fanthom it's mysteries, it's buildings and it's monuments.

It is beyond my understanding why those with the slave mind still see xtianity as orthodox and Ifa or Vodou as "pagan". But those who have made study of the history of the canon know of it's "pagan" influences. Perhaps a proper exegesis of romans 12:1-4 would give you some light on this subject.

It is true that some africans sold other africans into slavery. It is also true that some african-americans owned slaves. We are killing each other over power and money all over the world, what's the solution the koran, the bible? Please!
quote:
Originally posted by DivineJoy:
quote:
Originally posted by kresge:
There may be people who believe this, or who try to make some kind of causal connection between such events. That does not make it true.


The Africans themselves are on the tape. Not someone else talking about it. Geesh!


White guys (America) stealing from a store (oil)...
Blaming the owners (Middle East), and make them out to look like terrorists.
Black people (innocent bystanders, riding with the white guys) on the sideline watching, saying "He doesn't have a gun".
Cheered by the crowd outside, misinformed to what happened, screaming "USA! USA!"

Also, the part of the Black man fearing anal sex all his life, being tricked by the police to confess a crime he didn't commit. Showing this man being law abiding and still getting railroaded in the system.

Aaron is speaking volumes.

Look familiar?
quote:
Originally posted by Fagunwa:
Look familiar?


No. There is NO simiiarity to this post and the Boondocks show AT ALL.

On this tape by NOVA (look it up), there are Africans asking for forgiveness. The BLACK PROFESSOR who took the trip was taken by surprise. It was totally unexpected. West Africans feel God has punished Africa for selling their brothers as slaves.
quote:
Originally posted by Fagunwa:
quote:
Originally posted by DivineJoy:
The West African Kings (Mali and Songhai empires) are the ones who sold their enemies as slaves to America. Their religion was mainly Islam. The people they sold....worshiped the God in Heaven. Yep, you're a descendants of the 12 tribes of Israel.

So, its not for us (Blacks born in America) to do the rituals of West Africa because we didn't do them when we lived there. And I AGREE that Christianity has adopted several pagan rituals, which is one of the reasons this country is starting to decline morally.


I usually avoid this kind of thing but this is so completely misinformed I had to write something. I am really tired of folks speaking of xtianity,whose text most of them do not understand, speaking or writing of rituals about which they understand even less.

The 12 tribes of "is it real" have no african relevance at all. Before you speak on our rituals at least study something about what you profess beyond "pastor preached it in church on sunday". Before there was an abraham or a jacob, before there was a muhammad, before buddah was even thought about, YOUR ancestors already had a religious science so deep that modern scholarship is still unable to fanthom it's mysteries, it's buildings and it's monuments.

It is beyond my understanding why those with the slave mind still see xtianity as orthodox and Ifa or Vodou as "pagan". But those who have made study of the history of the canon know of it's "pagan" influences. Perhaps a proper exegesis of romans 12:1-4 would give you some light on this subject.

It is true that some africans sold other africans into slavery. It is also true that some african-americans owned slaves. We are killing each other over power and money all over the world, what's the solution the koran, the bible? Please!


I agree. There is no such thing as a "non-Pagan" religion, all religions spawned from the religions before it. The 3 so-called monotheistic religions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam came from the "pagan" polytheist religions before it, and retained much of the polytheist/animist stories and myths.

There is no such thing as an "orthodox" religion. And what's more, I don't see where Judaism, Christianity and Islam, three outsider Middle Eastern religions, get off calling the native religions of Africa "pagan". Some nerve.
I always find it ironic that a people can and will embrace the faith of thier oppressors so wholeheartedly. Jesus was'nt a christian, would'nt know a christian if you hit him with neon sign. He was a hebrew rabbi telling his people to get back on the path of thier ancestors (ie...the old testement). Africans brought over to this country, had to learn the bible to learn the english language, not to mention being forcfully converted as time went on during slavery. I get asked all the time, do I follow the laws of the old or new testement? I go with the old. Lets say that Jesus (and did'nt the angel tell Mary and Joseph to name him EMMANUEL??? Where did "Jesus" come from?) was the "son" of the almighty. There is no way I'm going to follow the son over THE FATHER. The Almighty said his words will never change and he meant it. The christian faith has a good racket going I'll give them that much.
quote:
Originally posted by DivineJoy:
quote:
Originally posted by Fagunwa:
Look familiar?


No. There is NO simiiarity to this post and the Boondocks show AT ALL.

On this tape by NOVA (look it up), there are Africans asking for forgiveness. The BLACK PROFESSOR who took the trip was taken by surprise. It was totally unexpected. West Africans feel God has punished Africa for selling their brothers as slaves.


I guess that's all you could address from my posts and even that's misunderstood. You have displayed all that you know and I'll leave it there because for me to continue would be bullying. But I will ask one question, was the 400 year enslavement and brainwashing of africans in the diaspora and at home the punishment of your god too,is the continued abuse of africans the world over gods punishment?
quote:
Originally posted by xxGAMBITxx:
I always find it ironic that a people can and will embrace the faith of thier oppressors so wholeheartedly. Jesus was'nt a christian, would'nt know a christian if you hit him with neon sign. He was a hebrew rabbi telling his people to get back on the path of thier ancestors (ie...the old testement). Africans brought over to this country, had to learn the bible to learn the english language, not to mention being forcfully converted as time went on during slavery. I get asked all the time, do I follow the laws of the old or new testement? I go with the old. Lets say that Jesus (and did'nt the angel tell Mary and Joseph to name him EMMANUEL??? Where did "Jesus" come from?) was the "son" of the almighty. There is no way I'm going to follow the son over THE FATHER. The Almighty said his words will never change and he meant it. The christian faith has a good racket going I'll give them that much.


Brother G is that your daughter? She is a star!
quote:
Originally posted by Fagunwa:
quote:
Originally posted by xxGAMBITxx:
I always find it ironic that a people can and will embrace the faith of thier oppressors so wholeheartedly. Jesus was'nt a christian, would'nt know a christian if you hit him with neon sign. He was a hebrew rabbi telling his people to get back on the path of thier ancestors (ie...the old testement). Africans brought over to this country, had to learn the bible to learn the english language, not to mention being forcfully converted as time went on during slavery. I get asked all the time, do I follow the laws of the old or new testement? I go with the old. Lets say that Jesus (and did'nt the angel tell Mary and Joseph to name him EMMANUEL??? Where did "Jesus" come from?) was the "son" of the almighty. There is no way I'm going to follow the son over THE FATHER. The Almighty said his words will never change and he meant it. The christian faith has a good racket going I'll give them that much.


Brother G is that your daughter? She is a star!


Thanks. Yeah thats my little smurfette. cabbage
quote:
originally posted by Oshun Auset--I notice a lot of us are comfy with Nile Valley symbolism, yet shun Voudun/Yoruba symbolism/practices/beliefs ect. IMO this is largely because of the Biblical/historical ties)


--I firmly believe these ethnic "not" pagan African symbolisms/practices/beliefs are at the root of the matter...with all the lies/distortions/mis-transliterations I will never be thoroughly convinced that Christianity has the same depth as Black Antiquity....
quote:
Originally posted by xxGAMBITxx:
I always find it ironic that a people can and will embrace the faith of thier oppressors so wholeheartedly. Jesus was'nt a christian, would'nt know a christian if you hit him with neon sign. He was a hebrew rabbi telling his people to get back on the path of thier ancestors (ie...the old testement). Africans brought over to this country, had to learn the bible to learn the english language, not to mention being forcfully converted as time went on during slavery. I get asked all the time, do I follow the laws of the old or new testement? I go with the old. Lets say that Jesus (and did'nt the angel tell Mary and Joseph to name him EMMANUEL??? Where did "Jesus" come from?) was the "son" of the almighty. There is no way I'm going to follow the son over THE FATHER. The Almighty said his words will never change and he meant it. The christian faith has a good racket going I'll give them that much.


You already know how "orthodox" Christians will answer this (the whole "Trinity" apologetics), but I can give you an interesting answer about "God the Son" from Valentinian Gnostic Christianity:

http://www.webcom.com/~gnosis/library/valentinus/Brief_Summary_Theology.htm

http://www.webcom.com/~gnosis/library/valentinus/Valentinian_Theology.htm


quote:
The Father
Valentinus and his followers believed that God, the supreme Father is "uncontained, incomprehensible and cannot be seen or heard" (Against Heresies 1:2:5). Therefore he defies accurate description. He is infinite, without beginning or end and is the ultimate origin of all things. He encompasses all things without being encompassed (Ep5:3, Gospel of Truth 18:34, Valentinian Exposition 22:27-28, Against Heresies 2:2:2). Everything including the world lies within the Father and continues to be part of him. God manifests himself through a process of self-unfolding in the subsequent multiplicity of being while maintaining his unity.

All Valentinians agree that God incorporates both masculine and feminine characteristics. This is in opposition to traditional Jewish and orthodox Christian descriptions of God in exclusively masculine terms. According to most sources, the Father (or Parent)can be understood as a male-female dyad. This is related to the notion that God provides the universe with both form and substance.

The aspect through which the Father provides the universe with substance can be understood as feminine. In this aspect he is called Silence, Grace and Thought. Silence is God's primordial state of tranquillity (Valentinian Exposition 22:24) and self-awareness (Excerpts of Theodotus 7:1). She is the active creative Thought that makes all subsequent states of being (or "Aeons") substantial.

The masculine aspect of God which gives the universe form is called by the names Ineffable, Depth and First Father. Depth is the profoundly incomprehensible, all-encompassing aspect of the deity. According to some sources, he is essentially passive. Only when moved to action by his feminine Thought, does he gives the universe form. (cf. Epiphanius Panarion 5:3)

The anonymous author summarized by Hippolytus and the author of the Tripartite Tractate emphasize the unity of the Father. They point out that these two aspects of the deity are not truly separate entities. They exist as simultaneous states of being within the Godhead (cf. Refutation of Heresies 30:8). They are like two sides of a coin or like water and wetness. They are inseparable and one cannot be understood without the other. For this reason these two authors describe God in more strongly unitary terms.



The Son
The origin of the universe is described as a process of emanation of subsequent states of being from the Godhead. According to the sources, in the beginning, there was nothing at all created and the Father rested in himself as an inert unitary being (Refutation of Heresies 29:5, Against Heresies 1:1:1, Authoritative Teaching 25:27-34). The universe existed only as a potential, not in actuality. As one source puts it, "the self-begotten contained in himself everything, which was in him in unawareness" (Panarion 5:3 cf. also Valentinian Exposition 22:27-28, Tripartite Tractate 60:1-34).

The creative process entails self-limitation on the part of the Godhead. In order that subsequent states of being (Aeons) remain separate from him, the Father created a boundary or Limit (Against Heresies 1:2:1, Valentinian Exposition 27:36-37). It is the power of Limit which "consolidates the All and keeps it outside of the Ineffable Greatness" (Against Heresies 1:2:2). The Limit, also called the Cross, has two functions. It separates the spiritual world (or "Fullness") from the Father and provides these things with strength (Against Heresies 1:2:1).

This accomplished, the Father then was able to manifest himself in a comprehensible form through a process of emanation. Theodotus describes this process in the following words, "Through his own Thought as the one who knew himself, he (the Father) brought forth the spirit of knowledge, which is in knowledge, the Only-Begotten (Son)" (Excerpts of Theodotus 7:1).

This offspring is the "Only Begotten Son". Like God, the Son is also androgynous and generally understood as a male-female dyad. The masculine aspect or Aeon of the Son is referred to as Only-Begotten, Mind and Father of All. His feminine aspect is called Truth and Mother of All. They represent how truth can only be comprehended by the truly conscious mind. The Son is the Beginning of all things that follow (cf. John 1:1). The Father and the Son, are sometimes referred to as the original Four since they both can be understood as dyads (i.e. Depth, Silence, Mind and Truth).

The Son (i.e. Mind and Truth) is the comprehensible image of the incomprehensible aspects of God (Against Heresies 1:12:1, Tripartite Tractate 66:13-15). It is only through his mediation that we can know the supreme deity, since "He who came forth from knowledge, that is, from the Father's thought became himself knowledge, that is, the Son, because 'through the Son the Father is known'" (Excerpts of Theodotus 7:1 cf. Matt 11:27)

The relationship between the Father and the Son can be compared to the relationship between the human mind and the unconscious. It must be noted that the Son is encompassed or lies within the Father.



That's a panentheistic/monistic explanation of the Godhead as told by 2nd century Christian monist Valentinus. Interesting and it sounds very Eastern-philosophy oriented. It's influenced by Neoplatonism.
quote:
Originally posted by xxGAMBITxx:
Empty..

Good info there. If more christians actually studied the historical aspects of thier religion, I believe alot of changes would be made...and for the better. tfro


No prob! tfro Imagine how vastly different Christianity would be if this sect had become the dominant form of Christianity rather than what has become the dominant forms today.

Here is the rest of the story in Valentinian Christianity about where Jesus and Humanity come from:

quote:
The Suffering of the Lower Wisdom

As a result of the fall, the lower Wisdom (i.e. the aborted Thinking) was trapped in a lower realm along with the deficiency and suffering. This lower realm or "deficiency" is the physical universe. Just as the Fullness is a product of the Son and lies within him, so also the realm of deficiency is a product of the Fullness and lies within it "as the center within a circle or a stain in a garment" (Against Heresies 2:4:2) The deficiency lies "outside" the Fullness only with regard to knowledge (Against Heresies 2:4:2). Just as the deficiency arose as result of ignorance, it will be dissolved through knowledge.

The fallen Wisdom is sometimes called "Achamoth" from the Hebrew word for wisdom and "Holy Spirit" after the one with Christ. She is the heavenly Jerusalem (cf. Revelation 21:9-10) and the lost sheep of the parable (Matthew 18:11-14). Trapped in a lower realm and ignorant of her true origin, she is the archetype of the individual person.

She continued her futile quest to know God without knowing Christ but she was prevented from ascending to the Fullness by the Limit. As a result of her ignorance, she continued to experience emotional sufferings of grief, fear and confusion. She experienced the world as a place of illusion and she was unable to distinguish reality from her own fantasy. This state of illusion and suffering (i.e. the deficiency) is the essence of the world experienced by all those who are ignorant of God (cf. Gospel of Truth 29:1-7, Against Heresies 2:14:3, Treatise on the Resurrection 48:21-29).

Then Wisdom (Sophia) underwent a conversion and thought about the ones who had given her life. As a result she became cheerful and laughed (Against Heresies 1:4:2). She began to plead with them for assistance (Against Heresies 1:4:5, Refutation of Heresies 32:3). Her conversion and pleading are a state of being intermediate between ignorance and spiritual knowledge. Since they represent the longing for the divine, the pleading and conversion became personified as a figure called the "Craftsman". He represents the defective image that those who are ignorant (but repentant) mistakenly worship as "God".


The Son Descends to Lower Wisdom

In response to Wisdom's pleading, the Savior "emptied himself" (Philippians 2:7) and descended outside the Fullness into the deficiency with his retinue of angels (Excerpts of Theodotus 35:1, Against Heresies 1:4:5). He and Wisdom (Sophia) were joined together as a pair of Aeons. Through knowledge of the eternal realm she was freed of illusion and suffering.

Wisdom (Sophia) rejoiced at the sight of the Savior and his retinue of angels, and brought forth spiritual seeds in their image. These seeds are the spiritual element present in every Christian. For this reason the seeds are referred to as the Church. They are considered to be an image of the pre-existent Church in the Fullness (Against Heresies 1:5:6, Excerpts of Theodotus 40).

The female seeds and the male angels are what is referred to by the statement, "In the image of God he created them, male and female he created them" (Genesis 1:27 cf. Excepts of Theodotus 21:1). Just as the Savior is the bridegroom of Wisdom (Sophia), so also the angels will be the bridegrooms of the seeds at the end of time.

Thus three states of being or "substances" came into being from Wisdom (Sophia) as a result of her quest to know God. First the illusion which characterizes mundane existence came from ignorance and suffering. Second came conversion and pleading which represent an intermediate stage between ignorance and knowledge. Last the spiritual seed came from her knowledge.

The myth of Wisdom's suffering and ultimate redemption can be understood as an allegory of the individual person's spiritual development. The search for God through Thinking alone, without knowing Christ leads to suffering and a defective concept of God as an anthropomorphic creator and lawgiver. It is only through the intervention of the Savior, that these false concepts can be left behind and true knowledge can be attained.


The Material Creation

The creation of the material world was necessary in order that the spiritual seeds might go forth in immaturity and be trained here (cf. Against Heresies 1:7:5). Since she could not create this world directly, Wisdom (Sophia) influenced the Craftsman to give material things form. Through him she made "the heaven and the earth" (Genesis 1:13 cf. Excerpts of Theodotus 47:1-2, Against Heresies 1:5:1). The Craftsman is ignorant of his mother and thinks that he acts alone, but he unconsciously acts as her agent (cf. 1 Corinthians 2:8).

The Craftsman created seven angelic beings or "heavens" and dwells above them. For this reason he is called Seventh. The Craftsman's seven angels represent the seven days of creation in the book of Genesis. The Craftsman's mother Wisdom (Sophia) and the Savior dwell above him in the eighth heaven. These eight heavens are in the image of the Eight Aeons in the Fullness (Against Heresies 1:5:2). Wisdom (Sophia) and the Savior secretly influenced the Craftsman to make the material universe in the image of the things in the Fullness. This is so that Truth might be manifest to those who know to seek it, even in the midst of illusion and deficiency.

Human beings were formed by the Craftsman in the image of the pre-existent Humanity. They consist of a material body, a demonic element, a rational soul and the spiritual seed. The spiritual seed is capable of attaining to knowledge (gnosis) of God through the mediation of Jesus. Each person who receives knowledge destroys a portion of the deficiency and brings the Godhead one step closer to reintegration. The consummation or end of the world will occur when "all that is spiritual has been shaped by knowledge" (Against Heresies 1:6:1).

The spirits then put aside animate souls and with their mother Wisdom (Sophia), they enter the Fullness. Wisdom (Sophia), who is the new Jerusalem (Revelation 21:9-10) is joined to her bridegroom, the Savior. Likewise, the spirits are joined to the angels (Against Heresies 1:7:1, Excerpts of Theodotus 64:1, Valentinian Exposition 39:28-33, Gospel of Philip 81:34-82:25). They all "attain to the vision of the Father and become intellectual Aeons, entering into the intelligible and eternal union in marriage" (Excerpts of Theodotus 64:1). The entire Fullness is the "bridal chamber" for their union (Against Heresies 1:7:1, Excerpts of Theodotus 64:1).

Then the "fire which is hidden in the world will blaze up and ignite and destroy all matter and consume itself at the same time and pass into nothingness" (Against Heresies 1:7:1). The physical world will cease to exist. The deficiency will then have been eliminated and the process of restoration will be complete.



Valentinaian Christians believed that the physical universe was a reflection of spiritual realms that existed in different dimensions of the universe. Our physical realm is literally inside the center of God (can you imagine?) In this panentheistic sect, God did not "create" the universe in the way commonly perceived, the Godhead emmanated through several spiritual, psychic and astral forms until It emmanated into a force (the Demiurge) that created our universe. Mankind ("Anthropos" in the Greek language of these tracts) was originally a spiritual Aeon (pantheistic spiritual realm) that split into the many souls and spirits of invididual humans and took on physical bodies.

In this Christian sect, there is no "End Times". Eventually, when Humanity has attained a level of maximum enligthenment, the material world is reabsorbed into the higher realms and the higher realms themselves are absorbed back into Fullness of the Godhead. We are still inside of the Godhead, we just don't realize it and thus the world is filled with suffering. Jesus came as a manifestation of Man's original nature to remind of us our true identity. cool
It isn't the "paganism" that we are comfortable with. The symbols of Christmas are secular: Santa is the diminution of a bishop of Smyrna and not at all ecclesiastical any more, so he is secular. The tree has no one dancing around it and praising and thanking the earth or the earth goddess any more (except perhaps the occasional Wiccan whose religion is far more modern than they like to think), so it is secular. Even the solstice is noted generally only as a time of the daylight finally lengthening which means that summer and vacations will finally be here.

The question of this thread I think was misdirected. It's not that we are comfortable with paganism. We're merely comfortable with anything no matter its origin if it is stripped of its original meaning (we don't spend much time on Christ-mass morning worshipping, do we?) and made harmelss so we can celebrate something and enjoy ourselves. We will turn anything into entertainment if we can, and we've done that with Christmas, the bunnies and eggs of Easter, the ghouls of Halloween, and largely the fireworks of the Fourth of July. As long as we can have our corn on the cob and barbeque, other people can sing about Valley Forge all they want. We like our firworks.

It isn't paganism. It's the fun we like.
quote:
Originally posted by Melesi:
It isn't the "paganism" that we are comfortable with. The symbols of Christmas are secular: Santa is the diminution of a bishop of Smyrna and not at all ecclesiastical any more, so he is secular. The tree has no one dancing around it and praising and thanking the earth or the earth goddess any more (except perhaps the occasional Wiccan whose religion is far more modern than they like to think), so it is secular. Even the solstice is noted generally only as a time of the daylight finally lengthening which means that summer and vacations will finally be here.

The question of this thread I think was misdirected. It's not that we are comfortable with paganism. We're merely comfortable with anything no matter its origin if it is stripped of its original meaning (we don't spend much time on Christ-mass morning worshipping, do we?) and made harmelss so we can celebrate something and enjoy ourselves. We will turn anything into entertainment if we can, and we've done that with Christmas, the bunnies and eggs of Easter, the ghouls of Halloween, and largely the fireworks of the Fourth of July. As long as we can have our corn on the cob and barbeque, other people can sing about Valley Forge all they want. We like our firworks.

It isn't paganism. It's the fun we like.


You are missing something.

None of thse 'harmless' stripped pagan symbols are African in origin.

BTW bowing down to the X-mass tree on the winter solstice doesn't sound like an empty gesture to me.

They have us practicing their Euro-paganism and disrespecting, vilifying, and aboring our Afro-pagains...BTW I don't have a problem with the word pagan it just means...the belief and practices othe country folk.

But never-the-less... I got no good responses from anyone accept those that basically share my perspective... predictable.

DivineJoy, are you European/White or just brainwashed? I ask because anyone who thinks this particular countries morals have declined since the times of the native Amerikkkan genecide and the enslavement of African peoples is suspect.

I was tempted to call you an intellectually insulting name at one point while reading this thread, but your banter makes me pitty you.


BTW missionaries went to West Africa and brainwashed our family over their to think slavery and colonization was 'our' fault too. You can get all kinds of brainwashed folk to say all kinds of self hating comments, especially on the tel-lie-vision.
EP,

++++++++++++++++++++++++++
You are missing something.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++

That does happen from time to time. I occasionally tell people that I'm not always happy living in my brain because it does do just that. Ah, well.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++
None of thse 'harmless' stripped pagan symbols are African in origin.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++

OK, but I don't see the problem with that. Humans being what they are, every culture has produced and still does concepts and demands that it ought not. Even in Africa our concepts were not always of the best. In fact, most of what in America passes for honoring our African roots is a romanticized, rather Rousseauean view of ancient Africa, stripped of its real meaning and made harmless by American isolation from all that we don't like, like nature. So Christmass isn't African. That doesn't mean that it's bad nor that things African are by that made better than Christmas, or that we would be better off by celebrating something truly African instead of Christmas.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++
BTW bowing down to the X-mass tree on the winter solstice doesn't sound like an empty gesture to me
++++++++++++++++++++++++++

But my point was that we don't bow down to it. We use it as a symbol of a season of fun and frenzied shopping, not anything more. The harm in that lies in us, not in the tree.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++
They have us practicing their Euro-paganism and disrespecting, vilifying, and aboring our Afro-pagains...BTW I don't have a problem with the word pagan it just means...the belief and practices othe country folk.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++

One form of paganism (and I agree with you that paganism is not a negative term. I tend to use "polytheist" most of the time to keep from having to explain myself on this point repeatedly, but it's a perfectly good word to use) is not different in spirit from another. They differ only in specifics and in details. All of them are an attempt to understand the larger-than-me world.

Trouble is, in America we're not pagans any more, nor do we show any evidence of reverting to pagan thinking. The world is not populated by imps and goblins or even powers bigger than me. That was the point of my thread on believing in nothing. If we can pick and choose what we believe in--and Americans do that--then our Higher Power is ourselves and our choices. This is the reason for deconstructionism, for the multiplicity of beliefs, for the rapid and visceral offense taken at disagreements. The pagan at least had a world larger than himself. We do not. My world is my choice, and that's all that the world is.

Taht's why the pagan symbols are stripped of their meaning and "made harmless," because in our eyes they point to nothing beyond ourselves. We don't bow down to the tree because there's no reason to: "La ilaha illa me."

So it isn't "their" fault. It's the modernist world and culture, which we gladly embrace. It's our fault, not theirs.

But Christmas isn't a bad thing, not when we remember the Savior.
quote:
Originally posted by Oshun Auset:
I would like all those(especially X-tians) who are comfortable with Santa, X-mas trees, the Easter Bunny ect. to really analyze and comment on why they are comfortable with the inundation of pre-X-tian European symbols and practices(These things are NOT secular) yet are petrified of all things that are pre-X-tian and African.(In particular West African...I notice a lot of us are comfy with Nile Valley symbolism, yet shun Voudun/Yoruba symbolism/practices/beliefs ect. IMO this is largely because of the Biblical/historical ties)

I have my own thoughts on the subject, but I would like to see what those who actually do this are thinking.



A very interesting question/topic. My answer is the interpretation of the Bible and teachings of Christianity exclude all other types of worship, so that Christians close their minds to it (or to any other alternative), and, perhaps more practically, because people don't know anything about it. However I am not christian.

When I was doing (limited) research for my story I found an interesting book (that I dipped into) about Voudun culture/worship called Divine horsemen: voodoo gods of Haiti. Deren, Maya. Are you familiar with it?
I wondered if you or anyone else had read it and their thoughts?

And I also wondered whether Haitian Voudun is vastly different from African vodun? I understand that it would have changed/evolved in it's 'new' environment.
quote:
Originally posted by Melesi:
EP,

++++++++++++++++++++++++++
You are missing something.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++

That does happen from time to time. I occasionally tell people that I'm not always happy living in my brain because it does do just that. Ah, well.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++
None of thse 'harmless' stripped pagan symbols are African in origin.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++

OK, but I don't see the problem with that. Humans being what they are, every culture has produced and still does concepts and demands that it ought not. Even in Africa our concepts were not always of the best. In fact, most of what in America passes for honoring our African roots is a romanticized, rather Rousseauean view of ancient Africa, stripped of its real meaning and made harmless by American isolation from all that we don't like, like nature. So Christmass isn't African. That doesn't mean that it's bad nor that things African are by that made better than Christmas, or that we would be better off by celebrating something truly African instead of Christmas.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++
BTW bowing down to the X-mass tree on the winter solstice doesn't sound like an empty gesture to me
++++++++++++++++++++++++++

But my point was that we don't bow down to it. We use it as a symbol of a season of fun and frenzied shopping, not anything more. The harm in that lies in us, not in the tree.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++
They have us practicing their Euro-paganism and disrespecting, vilifying, and aboring our Afro-pagains...BTW I don't have a problem with the word pagan it just means...the belief and practices othe country folk.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++

One form of paganism (and I agree with you that paganism is not a negative term. I tend to use "polytheist" most of the time to keep from having to explain myself on this point repeatedly, but it's a perfectly good word to use) is not different in spirit from another. They differ only in specifics and in details. All of them are an attempt to understand the larger-than-me world.

Trouble is, in America we're not pagans any more, nor do we show any evidence of reverting to pagan thinking. The world is not populated by imps and goblins or even powers bigger than me. That was the point of my thread on believing in nothing. If we can pick and choose what we believe in--and Americans do that--then our Higher Power is ourselves and our choices. This is the reason for deconstructionism, for the multiplicity of beliefs, for the rapid and visceral offense taken at disagreements. The pagan at least had a world larger than himself. We do not. My world is my choice, and that's all that the world is.

Taht's why the pagan symbols are stripped of their meaning and "made harmless," because in our eyes they point to nothing beyond ourselves. We don't bow down to the tree because there's no reason to: "La ilaha illa me."

So it isn't "their" fault. It's the modernist world and culture, which we gladly embrace. It's our fault, not theirs.

But Christmas isn't a bad thing, not when we remember the Savior.


You are still missing my point. There is something "terribly" wrong with African people being completely frightened of African paganism while embracing Euro-Paganism. It is scary when any culture vilifies it's traditions but accepts their oppressors, especially when their own religious excuse(from the oppressor, no coincidence there) for doing so, says you should lay waiste to ALL paganism.

Get my point? It is an extension of self hatred.

We do bown down to the tree, from childhood actually....How do you get the presents from under it?

To say that Amerikkkans aren't pagans(in the negative conotation of the word) is laughable. The way folks worhip money in this country? Please.

Folks still believe in a white guy falling out of the sky to save us... Born of a women without sexual intercourse being a factor... Not to mention all the other literalist belief in the hocus pocus in the Helio Biblio... If if those aren't fairy tails I don't know what is...
quote:
Originally posted by art_gurl:
quote:
Originally posted by Oshun Auset:
I would like all those(especially X-tians) who are comfortable with Santa, X-mas trees, the Easter Bunny ect. to really analyze and comment on why they are comfortable with the inundation of pre-X-tian European symbols and practices(These things are NOT secular) yet are petrified of all things that are pre-X-tian and African.(In particular West African...I notice a lot of us are comfy with Nile Valley symbolism, yet shun Voudun/Yoruba symbolism/practices/beliefs ect. IMO this is largely because of the Biblical/historical ties)

I have my own thoughts on the subject, but I would like to see what those who actually do this are thinking.



A very interesting question/topic. My answer is the interpretation of the Bible and teachings of Christianity exclude all other types of worship, so that Christians close their minds to it (or to any other alternative), and, perhaps more practically, because people don't know anything about it. However I am not christian.


But their African minds are open to Euro-paganism?

quote:
When I was doing (limited) research for my story I found an interesting book (that I dipped into) about Voudun culture/worship called Divine horsemen: voodoo gods of Haiti. Deren, Maya. Are you familiar with it?
I wondered if you or anyone else had read it and their thoughts?

And I also wondered whether Haitian Voudun is vastly different from African vodun? I understand that it would have changed/evolved in it's 'new' environment.


I read that one, a while back...it was o.k.. Haittian Voudun has been infused with some Arawak (indigenous) beleifs of the Isle of Hispanola (Haiti/Dominican Republic) and with Free-Mason as well as some Catholic(mainly for disguise) beleifs/practices/symbols... but it is largely the same as the African Voudun still practiced in places like Benin, where the Africans in Haiti originally came from.
quote:
Originally posted by Empty Purnata:
quote:
Originally posted by DivineJoy:
quote:
Originally posted by Empty Purnata:
You believe that Pagainism is the reason of "moral decline"?

How has this country "morally declined"? Was there a time when it was better?


Individuals make a country. Individuals in this country have changed morally over the years because less emphasis is given toward pleasing God, and more on pleasure. Lying, homosexuality, rape, theft, murder, etc.

Although this things existed in the past, they are more commonplace now.


I would disagree, nothing has changed. You just have more access to hearing about these kinds of things now. In the past, these kinds of things were kept on DL when they happened because of shame culture in more Puritanical society.

Now, they are aired out into the open for everyone to see.

The 1950's were no more moral than now, Christian men and women had no problem hanging their Black Christian brethren and sisters. They had no problem promoting nuking non-White countries and had no problem killing Communists for God and Country.

People's minds were never on "pleasing God", they were MONEY. Money has always been America's God.

I can't believe that you, as an African-American, think that people were more "moral" in the past considering how terrible the past has been for us. Christians commit sin just like everyone else, many of these people doing bad things now are Christians.


And yes, I know the whole "Oh, but 'true Christians' don't to this and that" argument, but if that is so, then you could say every Christian is not really a Christian because all Christians do something messed in their lifetime, and continue to do so.

As Jesus said, "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone."


kEY SCRIPTURE:
The most outstanding mark of true Christians is that they have real love among themselves. (John 13:34, 35) They are not taught to think that they are better than people of other races or skin color. Neither are they taught to hate people from other countries. (Acts 10:34, 35) 34Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:35But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him.
Romans 12:19-21If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.



So they do not share in wars. True Christians treat one another as brothers and sisters.-1 John 4:20, 21.

as a group they demonstrate how powerful a spiritual force for good true religion can be.

Ye have heard that it hath it said, thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you and pray for them that despitefully use you and persecute you. (Matt. 5: 43-44)

Mt 24:4-Jesus told them, TAKE HEED THAT NO MAN DECEIVE YOU.
Mk 13:5-Jesus told them, TAKE HEED LEST ANY MAN DECEIVE YOU.
Lk 21:8-AND HE SAID, TAKE HEED THAT YE BE NOT DECEIVED.
Matthew 7:
13. Enter through the narrow gate, for wide is the gate and spacious and broad is the way that leads away to destruction, and many are those who are entering it.
14. But the gate is narrow - contracted by pressure - and the way is straitened and compressed that leads away to life, and few are they who find it. [Jer. 21:8; Deut. 30:19]
15. Beware of the false prophets, who come to you dressed as sheep, but inside they are devouring wolves. [Ezek. 22:27]
Matthew 7: Matthew 7:


There are many that may find they never had a chance. They lived according to mans ways, not Gods.
quote:
Originally posted by xxGAMBITxx:
I always find it ironic that a people can and will embrace the faith of thier oppressors so wholeheartedly. Jesus was'nt a christian, would'nt know a christian if you hit him with neon sign. He was a hebrew rabbi telling his people to get back on the path of thier ancestors (ie...the old testement). Africans brought over to this country, had to learn the bible to learn the english language, not to mention being forcfully converted as time went on during slavery. I get asked all the time, do I follow the laws of the old or new testement? I go with the old. Lets say that Jesus (and did'nt the angel tell Mary and Joseph to name him EMMANUEL??? Where did "Jesus" come from?) was the "son" of the almighty. There is no way I'm going to follow the son over THE FATHER. The Almighty said his words will never change and he meant it. The christian faith has a good racket going I'll give them that much.


You are correct, xxxGAMBITxxx, You do obey the Father. However since the 2nd Covenant has been fullfilled, you acess the the FATHER, through the SON. Being the same person anyway. IMHO.

Jesus said to his disciples: "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Have faith in God and faith in me. In my Father's house there are many dwelling places; otherwise, how could I have told you that I was going to prepare a place for you? I am indeed going to prepare a place for you, and then I shall come back to take you with me, that where I am you also may be. You know the way that leads where I go."
"Lord," said Thomas, "we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?" Jesus told him: "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through me. If you really knew me, you would now my Father also. From this point on you know him; you have seen him."
"Lord," Philip said to him, "show us the Father and that will be enough for us." "Philip," Jesus replied, "after I have been with you all this time, you still do no know me?"
"Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I speak are not spoken of myself; it is the Father who lives in me accomplishing his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else, believe because of the works I do. I solemnly assure you, the one who has faith in me will do the works I do, and greater far than these. Why? Because I go to the Father."
[John 14z:1 - 12]
quote:
Originally posted by Iam:
quote:
Originally posted by Oshun Auset:
quote:
Originally posted by Iam:


-a missionary

-an X-tian apologist

-a simpleton

-ignored


My response was 99% scripture. To say" a simpleton" and "ignored", you speak directly to HE who spoke the words.


No, I speak to those who quote from 'scripture' that has been proven to be perverted from it's African origins, by their oppressors since the days of old, to attain an authoritarian European worldview and society.

I will always speak out against a system that does not have balance and is used to oppress the Brown and Black races of man as well as the devine feminine.

Keep your 'Sun' god... I am a GODDESS!
Last edited {1}
Oshun Auset I found and bought a wonderful book today on Animism - Respecting the Living World. Graham Harvey. I especially like his 'take' on academia and his open mindedness.

His book is concerned with 'new animism', in respect to the religious cultures such as Ojibwe, Maori, Aboriginal Australian and eco-pagan, (included in his book) considering the linguistics, artistic, ecological and activist implications of these worldviews and lifeways.
It is fascinating to me because I have always despaired at how little inclusion the natural animal world has in most religions.

When I have digested a bit of the content, I'd like a chat!
.
This is a little off topic but related. Has anyone noticed that black people seem quick to distance themselves from almost * anything * we've done in the past (not just religion) and are just as quick to embrace novelties thrown at us by the dominant culture?

I notice this especially with music. If you want to talk to someone who really knows Jazz or the Blues that usually means talking to somebody who is white.
quote:
Originally posted by art_gurl:
Oshun Auset I found and bought a wonderful book today on Animism - Respecting the Living World. Graham Harvey. I especially like his 'take' on academia and his open mindedness.

His book is concerned with 'new animism', in respect to the religious cultures such as Ojibwe, Maori, Aboriginal Australian and eco-pagan, (included in his book) considering the linguistics, artistic, ecological and activist implications of these worldviews and lifeways.
It is fascinating to me because I have always despaired at how little inclusion the natural animal world has in most religions.

When I have digested a bit of the content, I'd like a chat!
.


Anytime. Sounds like a good book.
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:
This is a little off topic but related. Has anyone noticed that black people seem quick to distance themselves from almost * anything * we've done in the past (not just religion) and are just as quick to embrace novelties thrown at us by the dominant culture?


That hit's to the core of my point on this thread... BTW I like your contributions to the forum. Honest Brother you are!

quote:
I notice this especially with music. If you want to talk to someone who really knows Jazz or the Blues that usually means talking to somebody who is white.


Don't even get me started about who is at most of the Reaggae and Continental African musical concerts I go to...

Besides the Carribean and continental born Africans of course...Those of us born in the states are beyond low in attendence!

It's a damn shame!

bang
quote:
Originally posted by Oshun Auset:
That hit's to the core of my point on this thread... BTW I like your contributions to the forum. Honest Brother you are!


You are so kind Smile


quote:

Don't even get me started about who is at most of the Reaggae and Continental African musical concerts I go to...


You're not kidding. I went to a Reggae festival a few months ago and guess what the dominant hue was...

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