Greek Kabala Series
Greek Kabala Part 3
by Jack Courtis
We are on a journey to salvation, but we need a new view of theology because our old view has failed us. If you dispute this statement, simply ask yourself whether you are "saved". With all the pain in your life, the failures, the disappointments, the hurts, where is your salvation? After 2,000 years of our old view of theology, the world has not advanced morally or spiritually. Where is the world’s salvation? It is time to try something new. Paradoxically, our new view of theology is based on something very old, the Greek kabala of the New Testament and the Greek Tree of Life. Let us continue the journey by looking at the second sphere of Sofia (Wisdom).
Sphere 2 - Sofia (Sofia) Wisdom
The word Sofia appears in the New Testament in 6 different contexts. Fortunately for us, its meaning is basically the same: wisdom. But do we really understand what this means? It is easy to accept that Sofia is an emanation from Arche (First Principle). It is self-evident because the First Principle is the source of spiritual light and life. But what are we actually talking about? In the view of theology, that we are developing, we can use Gnostic sources to assist us and so, we can refer to The Secret Book of John. Here, John describes the emanation from the Monad of 12 projections, the last of which is Sofia. In this text, Wisdom is personified as feminine and she desires to create and does so without the consent of the masculine principle. The mystery of the virgin birth is concealed in this concept. In the Gnostic scripture Thunder-Perfect Mind, a manifestation of Wisdom describes herself as "harlot", "virgin", "mother" and by implication, "widow". Remember these points because they are relevant to the feminine journey on the Tree.
Let us now look at the first letter S (sigma). It is attributed to Aquarius and connects Power with First Principle on the Tree. This path is a step in the combined journey of men and women. Surely power must be exercised with wisdom or else it kills and destroys. The second letter o (omicron) is attributed to Mars. It is the fifth chakra and the fifth masculine path that connects Power and Glory. A very appropriate attribution. The description of the experience is in the Apocalypse of John, 3:1-6. This is the Letter to Sardis. The third letter f (fi) is attributed to Air and is the third step in the feminine journey. It connects Glory with First Principle. You will recall that according to Pythagorian thinking in its modern context, this path has to do with logical and scientific thinking. This is normally considered to be masculine and yet, it is on a feminine path.
The fourth letter i (iota) is attributed to the Sun and the fourth chakra. This is traditionally taken to be the Sun or heart chakra. This is also the fourth step in the masculine journey and its description is given in the Apocalypse of John, 2:18-29. This is the Letter to Thyatira. The path connects Greatness and Power on the Tree. The fifth letter a (alfa) is attributed to the Moon and is the first step of the masculine journey. It is also the first chakra. If you have not already seen it, you should realise that the attribution of the Greek letters to the chakras is different from the Hebrew system. That is because the theology is different and so is the way of salvation. The description of the experience of this path is in the Apocalypse of John, 2:1-7, the Letter to Ephesos. This path connects Kingdom and Foundation.
The formula for experiencing Sofia is Aquarius, Mars, Air, Sun and Moon.
Sphere 3 - NoesiV (Noesis) Understanding
Noesis appears in 6 different forms in the New Testament. "Understanding" is one of the meanings and the one appropriate in this theological context. In the Gnostic scripture The Three Tablets of Seth, we are told that Understanding is bestowed upon Power and that Power is bestowed upon Understanding. That fits the Greek Tree of Life perfectly and indicates the accuracy of the view of theology that we are developing.
The first letter N (ni) is attributed to Scorpio and is part of the combined journey. If you refer to the table in Part 2 of this series, you will see that it is also attributed to the genitals. This is a subtle indication that sexuality is involved in the spiritual process. This path connects Goodness with Glory on the Tree. The second letter o (omicron) is attributed to Mars and the fifth chakra. It is also the fifth step in the male journey. The description of the experience is in the Apocalypse of John 3:1-6, as the Letter to Sardis. It connects Power and Glory. The third letter e (epsilon) is attributed to Mercury, the second chakra and the second step in the male journey. The description of the experience is in the Apocalypse of John 2:8-11, as the Letter to Smyrna. The path connects Foundation and Victory.
The fourth letter s (sigma) is attributed to Aquarius and is part of the combined journey. It connects Power to First Principle. The fifth letter i (iota) is attributed to the Sun, the fourth chakra and the fourth step in the masculine journey. The experience is described in the Apocalypse of John 2:18-29, as the Letter to Thyatira. The path connects Greatness and Power. The sixth letter V is sigma in its final form and has been described above. It emphasises the importance of the combined journey of Aquarius for the proper understanding of Understanding.
The formula for understanding Noesis is Scorpio, Mars, Mercury, Aquarius, Sun and Aquarius.
The non-sphere - GnwsiV (Gnosis) Knowledge
Christ said "…ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free"; Gospel of John 8:32. Knowledge is the key to freedom and freedom is salvation. Thus the fundamental basis for salvation is knowledge. Up to now theology has not emphasized this teaching and instead it has insisted that salvation comes by faith and belief alone. Indeed, the Church did its utmost to suppress the spiritual knowledge of gnosis. The sad legacy of that policy is that today many cry out for salvation but no salvation comes. Instead we continue to be exhorted to have faith and believe, in the face of all the evidence that it has failed for most people. Do you doubt this failure? Look at your own personal life and look at the world around you. The Church has had 2,000 years to make the old theology work. It is now time for a new view of theology based on personal effort. To be fair, there are people who insist that salvation can come from faith and belief alone. This is a matter of personal experience.
Let us begin by noting that in the Hebrew Tree of Life, this sphere is known as Da’at and this also means Knowledge. Significantly, in Genesis 4:1 it is written, "And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived….". The old theology considers this to be a prudish euphemism for sex and has paid no attention to the fact that the Hebrew word is da’at. This is knowledge in the sense of gnosis, that is, spiritual knowledge. Thus the masculine principle has to know the feminine principle for any form of spiritual creation. Sexuality is the lowest form of this kind of knowledge.
In the gnostic myth, Sofia creates asexually, that is, without the concurrence of the masculine principle. In some gnostic texts this leads to her fall and creates the necessity for her redemption. However it must be emphasised here that this is not the view that we take. The Virgin Mary is the personification of Sofia and Mary conceived asexually in the sense that she conceived by the Holy Spirit. This is the mystery of the Virgin Birth. Hence the Virgin Mary is the personification of the first step of the feminine journey on the Greek Tree of Life. Mary must give birth as a virgin to the Redeemer, just as Sofia gives birth as a virgin to the kosmos. As Above, so Below. These are deep issues and we shall return to them in a later part of this series. Just one point at this stage however, one of the Greek titles of the Virgin Mary, is QeotokoV (Theotokos) which means "God Bearer". The first Greek letter of her title is Q (theta) and on the Greek Tree of Life it is attributed to Earth, connects Greatness to Goodness and is the first step in the feminine journey. A small confirmation of the view of theology that we are developing.
But let us return to the main issue, the sphere of Gnosis. Just as in the Hebrew Tree Da’at is created by the Fall of Adam and Eve, so in the Greek Tree Gnosis is created by the Fall. In both cases the "creation" is a negative, that is, a lack or an absence. What is it that is lacking? Knowledge! How is the negative turned into a positive? How is Knowledge created? By pain, hard work, personal discipline and constant effort. No wonder that we prefer to think that all we have to do is to have faith and believe. That takes no effort at all. But it also explains the lack of results for most people.
The first letter G (gamma) is attributed to Taurus and is part of the combined journey of men and women. It connects Kingdom and Victory on the Tree. The second letter n (ni) is attributed to Scorpio and is also part of the combined journey. We also know that Scorpio is connected with the genitals and this points to sexuality as being part of Knowledge. This path connects Goodness to Glory. The third letter o (omicron) is attributed to Mars, the fifth chakra and the fifth step in the masculine journey. It connects Power to Glory. The experience of this path is described in the Apocalypse of John 3:1-6, as the Letter to Sardis. The fourth letter s (sigma) is attributed to Aquarius and is part of the combined journey. It connects Power to First Principle. The fifth letter i (iota) is attributed to the Sun, the fourth chakra and the fourth step in the masculine journey. It connects Greatness to Power. The description of the experience of this path is in the Apocalypse of John 2:18-29, as the Letter to Thyatira. The sixth letter V is sigma in its final form and we have already seen it. This emphasises the importance of Aquarius.
One final point. Look at the Greek Tree and note that Gnosis exists at the conjunction of the pentagram formed as follows:
First Principle Þ Glory Þ Understanding Þ Wisdom Þ Power Þ First Principle
The doctrine of the pentagram was first publicly taught by Pythagoras. Since his time the doctrine has become one of the cornerstones of the western esoteric tradition. In the view of theology that we are developing, Knowledge is the combination of the five spheres that form a pentagram around it. But to get to those five spheres requires that the whole Tree has been traveled and all its lessons have been learned. That is, the sphere of Knowledge is created as the last stage of the work. We have a lot to do, but it is worthwhile because it is Knowledge that will set us free. In our present spiritual state, the Gnosis of freedom promised to us by Christ, is still ahead for most of us. We can recreate that Knowledge by doing the work.
The formula for experiencing Gnosis is Taurus, Scorpio, Mars, Aquarius, Sun and Aquarius.