Saturday, August 11, 2007

Harold Bloom on The Gospel of Thomas

I haven't said anything about the GThom in a while. Here is a quote from Harold Bloom. It introduces us to a new category of Jesus and thinking regarding the beginning and eschatology.

"Whatever surges beneath the surface of the Gospel of Thomas, it is not a Syrian Christian wisdom teaching of the second century. The ascetic accepts creation, but always upon the basis of having fallen from it, and always with the hope of being restored to it. That is hardly the aspiration of Jesus in the Gospel of Thomas. Like William Blake, like Jakob Böhme, this Jesus is looking for the face he had before the world was made. That marvelous trope I appropriate from W.B. Yeats, at his most Blakean. If such is your quest, then the Gospel of Thomas calls out to you."

Who we are has to do with where we have come from, where we began. That is why we are interested in Genesis. That is why we are interested in the Big Bang. These have everything to do with how we perceive ourselves and how we choose to live.

Below is from the Gospel of Thomas translation and notes from Patterson Brown's website Metalogos. These are probably pertinent verses to Boom's thesis.

18. The Disciples say to Yeshua: Tell us how our end shall be. (Ps 39:4) || Yeshua says: Have you then discovered the origin, so that you inquire about the end? For at the place where the origin is, there shall be the end. Blest is he who shall stand at the origin— and he shall know the end, and he shall not taste death. (Isa 48:12, Lk 20:38, Jn 1:1-2, Th 1; T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets: Little Gidding: ‘The end is where we start from’; Jack Kerouac, Visions of Cody: ‘What kind of journey is the life of a human being that it has a beginning but not an end?’)

50. Yeshua says: If they say to you: From whence do you come?, say to them: We have come from the Light, the place where the Light has originated thru itself— he [stood] and he himself appeared in their imagery. If they say to you: Who are you?, say: We are his Sons and we are the chosen of the Living Father. If they ask you: What is the sign of your Father in you?, say to them: It is movement with repose. (Isa 28:12 30:15, Lk 16:8, Jn 12:36, Th 27; Bhagavad-Gita 6.27: ‘When his mind is tranquil, perfect joy comes to the person of discipline; his passion is calmed, he is without sin, being one with the Infinite Spirit’)

So, where our origin is, our end will be. And, our origin is the light. We come from the light and we return to the light.

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