Plain in the city

A plain Quaker folk singer with a Juris Doctorate in his back pocket, salt in his blood, and a set of currach oars in the closet, Ulleann Pipes under his arm, guitar on his back, Anglo Irish baggage, wandering through New York City ... in constant amaze. Statement of Faithfulness. As a member of the Quaker Bloggers Ad Hoc Committee I affirm that I will be faithful to the Book of Discipline of my Meeting 15th Street Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Thomas

I have always found great insight in the book of Thomas... takes a lot of the magic out of later Gospels...

Jesus to those who seek, he tells " if you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you..."

In the process of clearness, the fear to face the inner conflicts which cause outer conflict seems to me to be just that... bound up in fear to work through, face inner conflict, to be open to yourself as well as others, sews the seeds of rupture of lives...

when asked all the practical things of seeking, praying, fasting, unlike in latter gospels, Jesus only says, "Do not tell lies, and do not do what you hate, for all things are plain in the sight of heaven." Here I am sure he is echoing Hill el, in saying do not do what you hate, he is not saying don't just do what you like to do, of course, but do not do unto others those things that are abhorrent to yourself, that is clear in the next line, that all we do is clear to God.

Elaine Pagels points out that in Thomas " Jesus rebukes those who seek access to God elsewhere, even - perhaps especially - those who seek it by trying to 'follow Jesus' himself. When certain disciples plead with Jesus to show us the place where you are, since it is necessary for us to seek it, he does not bother to answer so misguided a question and redirects the disciples away from themselves toward the light hidden within each person.
Equally important he says we are all his twin... all twins to each other in that sense... we are all equally within God... the God inside us...

3 Comments:

At 6:04 PM, Blogger Larry said...

Good post, Lor. I'm glad to find somebody else interested in Thomas. Ellie and I lead the monthly Bible study at Gainesville (FL) meeting. Last month we decided to study Thomas.

I have a copy of Thomas on my Bible Commentary (under the heading of Supplements), but haven't spent much time with it. If there's anything else noteworthy you would like to point out, I would be grateful.

Hang in there, ole buddy.

 
At 3:26 PM, Blogger david said...

Have either of you seen www.gospelthomas.com? It ahs multiple transaltions, scholarly line by liene exegesis and even the original Coptic for Thomas all on a searchable site.

Amazing bit of work.

 
At 2:46 PM, Blogger Rich in Brooklyn said...

I notice that Lorcan contrasts Thomas to the "later gospels". I am not a credentialed scholar of these things, but my impression from the reading I have done is that Thomas is probably much much later than the 3 synoptic gospels, and that much of the material in it is borrowed from them. If this is not correct, can someone point me to the studies that show otherwise?
- - Rich Accetta-Evans

 

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