Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Film production for Erotic Mysticism Documentary

Yesterday I had the pleasure of interviewing with Zeke Mazur who is going around interviewing scholars and practicioners of mysticism in order to put together a documentary on erotic mysticism. So I got to talk all afternoon to a captivated audience about one of my favorite subjects - the Valentinians and sacred marriage. You can find information about Zeke's film HERE <<<

Zeke, who is a Plotinian graduate student at University of Chicago, also has a personal webpage HERE <<<

Gnosis and sacred marriage is also the subject of one of the chapters I am planning to write for my Sex and the Serpent in Ancient Christianity: Why the Sexual Conflicts of the Early Church Still Matter. By the way, I have now finished two chapters of this book (Chapter 1: Where did the Mother God Go?; Chapter 2: Why was the Spirit Neutered?). I am going to start writing the third chapter this week: Chapter 3: Is Sex a Sin? - all about Jesus and Paul on this subject).


Jim Deardorff said...

I presume in your chapter "Why was the spirit neutered?" this refers to the Holy Spirit? Or does it refer equally to the human spirit? (It's too long to wait for your book to come out.) From what I gather, "spirit" is feminine in Hebrew, masculine in Latin and neuter in Greek.

A related question concerns how, as early Christianity developed, that the human spirit became marginalized while the Holy Spirit took over.

The human spirit is mentioned frequently in the OT, but only rarely in the NT. The human spirit is now, within Christianity, taken to be something born with the body and awaiting resurrection of the body after death, but not serving any purpose. One prays to the Holy Spirit, not to one's own spirit. One is encouraged to listen to the spirit of God, not to one's own conscience. Did gnosticism accept this state of affairs?

Jared Calaway said...

This book is sounding very interesting. How many chapters will there be? What are their tentative titles? When do you estimate it will be published?

geoffhudson.blogspot.com said...

If anyone neutered (made powerless) the Spirit it was the priests who rejected the prophetic way of cleansing the human spirit by the Spirit of God in favour of animal sacrifices for sins. The priests believed that the human spirit had to wait under the earth for judgement to see if it could rise to glory with a resurrection body, or not, depending on how the person had obeyed the law.

For the prophets, it was the the condition of the human spirit before God that that was important. That depended on whether or not a person obeyed the Spirit of God. It was the cleansed human spirit that would rise to glory instantaneously as it left the body behind it had animated. That all first century Jews thought that God gave two spirits to humans, the spirit of deceit and the spirit of truth, is evident from the scrolls. And yes, the human spirit basis of prophetic Judaism has undoubtedly been suppressed in both the OT, and in the extant NT which in its original form was truly prophetic.

I have no doubt that many of original prophetic documents were destroyed by the priests. I believe that the prophets did indeed have a library at Ein Gedi that was destroyed by the priests when the latter took control of Masada. The story of the destruction of that library is garbled in the writings attributed to Josephus, Life 9. Thus, it was not the "royal library and the archives that were now removed from them", but the prophet's library and archives that were removed from them, "them" being the prophets.

Bob MacDonald said...

I can't imagine how one would write a book or do a film based on scholarship in this area as Zeke describes - so I will write a 30 second comment!

It is clear that the Bible has a centrefold - the Song. From Jewish morning prayer - the traditional Artscroll Siddur, the intimacy of betrothal is invoked from Hosea 2:9. Romans mentions the cost of entry into the marriage by the death of Christ in chapter 7. A similar cost of simulated death is evident in circumcision (notably as commented on by Zippora - the bridegroom of blood episode - in the TNK and by the author of Colossians 2:11 in the NT). Hebrews invites us into the Holy of Holies through the veil, the flesh of Jesus. Everywhere in these canonical texts the first meaning is of our whole body being redeemed - nothing excluded.

Obviously, there is also a problem - the fact of self-seeking and self-justifying and power-hungry humans. In true self-promotional style, you can find some relevant material on my blog. :)

Memra said...

Is sex a sin? How else could mankind fulfill the Divine command to 'be fruitful, multiply, and fill the earth'???

The Deity did not mention cloning... :-)