The Meaning of the Nag Hammadi, now in paperback opens the with the thrilling adventure story of the discovery of the ancient Papyrii at Nag Hammadi. Muhammad Ali, the fellahin, discovered the sealed jar, he feared that it might contain a jinni, or spirit, but also had heard of hidden treasures in such jars. Greed overcame his fears and when he smashed open the jar, gold seemed to float into the air. To his disappointment, it was papyrus fragmenst, not gold, but for scholars around the world, it was invaluable.
Meyer then discusses the pre–Christian forms of wisdom that went onto influence what Christians believe today. In addition, some Nag Hammadi texts are attributed to Valentinus, a man who almost became Pope, and whose rejection changed the church in significant ways. Text by text, Meyer traces the history and impact of this great find on the Church, right up to our current beliefs and popular cultural fascination with this officially suppressed secret knowledge about Jesus and his followers.
The people we’ve come to call gnostics were passionate advocates of the view that salvation comes through knowledge and personal experience, and their passion shines through in the remarkable body of writings they produced over a period of more than a millennium and a half. Willis Barnstone and Marvin Meyer have created a translation that brings the gnostic voices to us from across the centuries with remarkable power and beauty—beginning with texts from the earliest years of Christianity—including material from the Nag Hammadi library—and continuing all the way up to expressions of gnostic wisdom found within Islam and in the Cathar movement of the Middle Ages. The twenty-one texts included here serve as a compact introduction to Gnosticism and its principal ideas—and they also provide an entrée to the pleasures of gnostic literature in general, representing, as they do, the greatest masterpieces of that tradition.
The Definitive Collection of Gnostic Writings
The year is 1945. At the foot of a cliff along the Nile River, near the city of Nag Hammadi, an Egyptian peasant unearths a large storage jar containing ancient manuscripts. The discovery turns out to be one of the greatest archaeological discoveries of the past century. A treasure of fourth-century texts, the manuscripts are the scriptures of the ancient mystical tradition commonly called Gnosticism, from the Greek gnosis, that is, secret knowledge. It is a discovery that challenges everything we thought we knew about the early Christian church, ancient Judaism, and Greco-Roman religions.
The Nag Hammadi Scriptures is the most complete and up-to-date English-language edition of these sacred texts from Egypt. It is full of treatises, testimonies, and secret books that had been lost for centuries. In addition to gospels purportedly by the apostles Thomas and Philip, and the revelations of James, Peter, and Paul, this collection also includes the Gospel of Mary and the controversial Gospel of Judas. The documents have been newly translated by a team of prominent international scholars. This volume also features introductory essays and extensive notes to help readers understand the context and significance of these texts that have revolutionized the study of early Christianity and ancient religious thought.
The birth of the Christian Church, and what it means for modern religion and philosophy.
This engaging guide presents an accessible overview of the birth of the Christian church, using the historical works found at the famous Nag Hammadi site in Egypt. With chapters discussing each of the major and minor documents found at Nag Hammadi, this volume also includes an overview of Gnosticism and the major players, revealing not only what the texts say, but also what they mean.
-Renewed interest in Gnosticism and the Gnostic gospels is driven by interest in the Nag Hammadi documents, The DaVinci Code, the Matrix movies, the Kabbalah, renewed interest in the divine feminine ideal, and the fact that many who've left the Church are looking for new answers in the early church
-Author is a scholar and expert who's studied with some of the top people in the field
In this radical reinterpretation, Jesus asks Judas to betray him. In contrast to the New Testament Gospels, Judas Iscariot is presented as a role model for all those who wish to be disciples of Jesus and is the one apostle who truly understands Jesus.
Discovered by farmers in the 1970s in Middle Egypt, the codex containing the gospel was bought and sold by antiquities traders, secreted away, and carried across three continents, all the while suffering damage that reduced much of it to fragments. In 2001, it finally found its way into the hands of a team of experts who would painstakingly reassemble and restore it. The Gospel of Judas has been translated from its original Coptic to clear prose, and is accompanied by commentary that explains its fascinating history in the context of the early Church, offering a whole new way of understanding the message of Jesus Christ.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
The books of the Bible are not the only ancient writings to tell the stories of Jesus and his followers - other Gnostic texts have also been found as well. "The Everything Gnostic Gospels Book" provides an overview of Gnosticism and the historical figures who are believed to be the authors: Thomas, James, Mary Magdalene, and others. This accessible guide explores the following questions: What do Gnostics believe?Who were the authors of the Gnostic Gospels?How are the Bible scriptures and Gnostic Gospels different? How are they the same?How were "official" Christian texts chosen?Learn about the different versions of Christianity that battled for supremacy in the first centuries after the death of Jesus. This entertaining and educational book describes each of the Gnostic Gospels, providing insight into the turbulent times of early Christianity as well as the renewed contemporary interest in these mysterious writings.