SERMON FOUR The World of Earthly Manifestation and its Mechanisms
BURNING ONE or FLAME (OR EROS)
THE HIGHEST IS HELIOS, THE SUN
GROWING ONE or TREE OF LIFE
EVIL THE LOWEST IS THE DEVIL
Deeper into worldly manifestation and the cycles of life, we find the duality of the world in divine opposites: the highest good is embodied in god the sun (or helios) and the lowest evil is embodied in the devil. They are united in either the FLAME or the TREE (see diagram). The number of these gods/devils is immeasurable as the stars, every star being a god and every space occupied by the star being a devil. These stars are motivated by the activity of the god above gods, called Abraxas.
The opposition to Abraxas‟ activity is the unreal (or the devil). The unreal is able to manifest only because we, the creatura have freewill and are able to think and talk about manifestations of the world. The devil, which opens everything closed, dissolves what is formed and destroys these things. [Ralph commented on the sense of nihilism this devil seems to create e.g., “what‟s the use of building this .” We are cautioned not to get caught up in reflecting on the display of these sparkling manifestations of countless gods whose nature we share and from whom we come. It would be ineffective to worship or pray to them even though their unreal energies stretch into infinity thus making them almost a real measure.
SERMON FIVE How do we accept the earthly cycles of life? By saying “yes” wholeheartedly. Whichever earthly path we choose, the world of the gods is made manifest to us in our spirituality (celestial gods) and our sexuality (earthly gods). These are not part of human nature, although very akin to us. Rather, they are powerful higher forces, which reach far beyond us and to whose laws we are subjected. They provide the Creatura with common tasks and dangers.
In this world it is the human lot to favour one side of a dichotomy over the other, and in so doing pushing the latter aside, even demonising it. Ralph told us to try to stretch ourselves to incorporate the other so as to become more complete. A supportive ceremony in the Gnostic Church, The Sacrament of Reconciliation enables the individual to become more whole. Although a solitary life may tend to lead us towards the light, its opposite, a more communal life, is to be preferred with its warmth and support for us with our tasks for earthly living.
SERMON SEVEN gives us perspective on human destiny. Where are we going and how? Man (sic) is small, yet he is a gateway into infinite space and timelessness. Ralph described the process of bringing our awareness increasingly into the present moment so that we travel from the greater mundane into the smaller – increasingly smaller worlds. Suddenly we are impacted with the wholeness of now. We are the wholeness, embodying and living all those stages of being in the Seven Sermons:- Abraxas, the manifestations, their destruction, the rebirthing and so on … We are rewarded with illumination.
Prenna and Ralph told us how a life similar to that of Jesus brings us through this same cycle of development many times thus engendering rich growth. The Gnostic take on Jesus is different from that of the conventional Christian church in many ways. After this inspiring and fascinating talk, which is summarised briefly here, Prenna and Ralph mentioned the Gnostic gathering at the Inner Harmony Centre, Apollo Road, Bulimba on Sundays to experience these and other concepts and symbolism. Everyone is welcome to attend.