May 4th, 1983, Serial No. 00400

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Monastic Theology Series Set 1 of 3




John is going to give us an exposition of part of Velazquez's people here in A.S. this morning.
And before that, I'd like to do something else, which is a little background.
First of all, to review for those people who weren't here earlier in the game,
the difference between gnosis and gnosticism.
If you have, I think you have those pages at Foyer,
where he's defending the existence of a genuine Catholic gnosis.
See, that's why we can focus on gnosis in this class.
We did talk about gnosticism. Gnosticism is the heretical or heterodox or,
what do you call it?
Well, as Irenaeus says, it's the false gnosis, yeah.
And then there's a true gnosis, which is inside the faith
and which is kind of the interiority of the faith itself,
the understanding of the faith itself.
That way we can clear it as we go on, perhaps.
So, in fact, Foyer says that Irenaeus never says anything negative about gnosis itself.
He presumes, he presupposes that people are aware that there's a true gnosis,
as you find in Paul in general, which we studied earlier.
And as you find in Ignatius of Mania, where the gnosis that the didacticate talks about,
is even in the Eucharistic prayer they're thinking about the gnosis that they receive.
So it's by no means a heretical notion.
And what we're after, really, is to find out what this true gnosis is.
Which, actually, Ignatius of Mania identifies with Christ.
He says, Jesus Christ is the gnosis of God, the knowledge of God.
And that's a key expression of what he's referring to.
Another thing, to repeat what we have to do from time to time,
what we really have to do, because we can get into a side path,
but what we're trying to find as we look for this true gnosis
is really the fullness of Christ.
Because there's an understanding of Christianity which,
in the first meeting of the word with the world,
the seed with the ground, had a particular fullness to it.
Even if it was just in its infant stages, in some way it had a completeness
that we find it very hard to recover.
It's strange about the way things grow, because they're complete when they start,
and then they can sort of lose that firmness as they go on,
and then they attain the completeness again at the end.
We've lost the initial completeness, which was an incomplete completeness,
and we move towards a more complete completeness in Mania,
but meanwhile we're pretty incomplete.
It's like, as things grow, they're out of shape.
They begin being, I don't know how to put it, they begin being symmetrical in a way,
and their potentiality, they're completely potential,
but in that potentiality, like a densely packed seed,
in some way they have a completeness of their own,
like a child, like a baby, which in its ways is round and perfect.
And then they begin to grow, and they begin to get out of shape,
and gradually it's like a struggle among the various parts to find their harmony.
And meanwhile they're a great blax.
And so it is with the Christian faith, it seems, with the understanding of Christianity.
It shoots out in one direction, and meanwhile it is very anemic in another direction.
And that's the situation we're in today.
So there's an enormous need to recover the vision of the fullness of Christianity.
So we go back to the beginning in order to find that shape once again, you see,
and then to bring it back, and as it were, try to find its extensions
as the word has moved further into the world.
Or let's put it this way, the word has moved into a bigger world,
and so we find the initial shape, and then we come out,
and we just allow that to expand into the world of today,
into the world of thought, or also the world of religious experience of today.
Another thing to remember is that when Irenaeus is fighting Gnostics,
we may think that they're just novelists or poets in a kind of facile, superficial sense,
or just thinkers.
But you've got to realize that philosophy and the others are not just in the head.
Philosophy is a kind of total thing too.
So that they are perhaps much deeper than we think they are,
especially when we read them through the accounts of their opponents,
even the Fathers of the Church, who are trying to dismantle their systems,
sort of deliberately make fun of them and so on.
But obviously they have an appeal.
If you get a sample of that, if you read some of the Gospel of Truth, for instance,
which is in Nag Hammadi, you get an idea of the depth that there is, the appeal that there is.
There's a kind of poetry on the edge of mysticism.
And one word which tends to describe it is depth.
It gives you a sense of a certain kind of depth,
just as much as the Eastern importations into our country do today.
And yet it can be a very dark depth sometimes.
Let me talk a little bit about the Gnosticism of Valentinus or Valentinus,
because he's the one that Irenaeus is fighting.
Okay, he's fighting the school, the Valentinian school of Gnosticism,
and the particular one that he's concerned with, at least in his first book,
is Ptolemaeus, who was a disciple of Valentinus,
for a particular brand of Valentinian Gnosticism,
which is the real stuff.
And it seems that Valentinian Gnosticism is like the Cadillac of Gnosticism.
It's the newest brand.
And Irenaeus says at one point that if he can demolish that one, he's got them all.
And somehow he's got them all. It's a very elegant version.
In fact, von Balthasar, when he sets out to write about Irenaeus,
he gives a description first of the system of Valentinus.
And he remarks on its beauty and on its attractiveness,
especially to people of that age, because it's got a little bit of everything in it.
It's kind of a world of wonders, you know, a wonderland.
As long as you don't think too much.
It's got a little bit of stoicism and a little bit of Poitinism, this and that,
and some of the Eastern mysteries, too.
Bear with me for a moment while I put a little bit of this on the board.
This system, which, if you look at it, is staggering,
because one thing generates another, and it's so complex.
And it's a list of words for us. It's a list of names at first,
and we don't realize the experience which can be behind it.
We don't realize even the poetic appeal that it is, when it's just names to us,
and they're names that came out of a former language.
And behind it, obviously, is a lot of appeal.
And behind it is some spiritual experience.
And also in it, in its center, is a tendency which is still around today,
and which I don't want to call, I don't want to describe it in any particular way,
because I think it's very important, and it's something we have to be able to relate to.
When we talked about Gnosticism before, we sort of were able to boil it down to that tendency.
The tendency towards pure interiority, let's put it that way, in a sense.
Let's see how these particular Gnostics point of view.
Well, probably, I mean, it's worth saying that right into the end of the first century,
at least in the West, I'm sure in the West,
writers tend to go on to do their philosophy for a very long time.
This is something that we tend to just keep apart,
because I think it's not...
My thinking is adjusting to the West.
So, let's assume that the life-life says it,
we pay attention to the Gnostics, we say,
this is why I'm a person of the sharks, the people of the sea of the sharks.
You'd think that there are a lot of us,
although there actually stand a few of us,
and probably there are a lot of us in the Gnostics.
So, it would be impossible to take up,
take a kind of wisdom, if you're going by devotional law, too.
It's hard for something to happen to all of our languages, of course,
and of transmission, and of reason, and of the world.
The way that we think of those things has somehow become so narrow
that we're unable to understand something,
that we're unable to really pull it apart,
and we're not able to understand it.
And to think of it, when we're talking about these things,
we have to let that framework be the open and broad way forward.
And this is especially true when you get together with a lot of us,
when you talk about the way we're set up.
The framework that you have for thinking of word, or thought, or reason,
or thinking, or mind, has to be broadened up,
because it won't be contained within that framework.
And that's why I've been using the word for a lot of us,
instead of word, because we already have a framework for word.
We already have a framework for word,
and we already have a framework for mind.
Because it's something much bigger than that,
and it has to come down.
And that's the thing, really, that we're getting at,
is to get an idea of that central mystery of all of us,
which, if you bring it into the present,
is, I think, the solution to something that we're trying to understand.
Easy to say, but difficult to do.
Simple, isn't it?
This is the ribbon.
This is Valentinus, as you said.
Now, at the very top of the ladder,
at the very source of all things,
the first cause of all things,
they see as being something called the abyss,
which is also the product, or the forefather of the problem.
And then, he's got a kind of a spouse,
he's got a kind of a counter-term for a mate,
and this is true of all of these things that have been generated here.
There's a man and there's a female, say.
And corresponding to the abyss is silence.
Let's see here.
So this is absolutely the first principle.
And every day, the whole system returns to the abyss.
Now, not as a teacher, not as a scholar,
but we correspond to something that we feel also.
In other words, these people were relating
to a kind of spiritual experience inside of themselves,
and they sort of projected it out in this whole mess,
in this whole scheme.
But these things are very real for us.
Even putting silence in the second phase,
and putting silence where the next thing is,
and putting silence even before the words,
silence before the words,
even in anxious or anxious,
is that Christ is the Word of God receiving all the silence, you know.
People are confused about that.
They're offended.
They're hysterical.
But obviously, there's a truth that's very close to them,
so they have to be careful about dismissing that.
Even though it doesn't work very well,
put it out, and it's stressful.
And from these two,
from the union of these two,
is generated another fact.
On this side, we have nus,
that's a familiar term.
Nus for intellect, and then for mind.
And this is a key term here,
because this is a synopsis of Gnosticism,
and it goes with it.
And it knows the Father directly.
Now, this is that inner spark.
Remember that expression that the other fellow writing about Gnosticism had,
gold and fire?
Well, this is the gold.
See, this is the inner spark of divinity,
also in the human person.
So, in that inner spark of divinity,
he knows the Father directly.
And therefore, he's a part of everything else that we're going to see in Gnosticism,
in some way,
to begin with.
I'm going to get into that in a second.
So, you generate it.
You generate it from the abyss and from silence.
Of course, it's too subliminal.
See, that's kind of marriage with an offspring.
And the offspring itself is as it were,
a non-human.
And that's the characteristic of Gnosticism,
is a kind of a sexual effect that runs through it,
which gives it an additional kind of appeal,
in that it seems to embrace even that reality.
And going along with the noose,
the noose is an intellect,
as far as we can see,
it's like a piece of noose.
But it has to do with the center of the person.
And I'm not saying immediately that this is in the person,
but that's what it's about.
That's the key of the system, I think.
And relating to that is truth.
Then there's another generator,
the mischief is another variable.
Lotus, the Buddha.
I'm putting lotus because
I don't want to get confused with what the Buddha was talking about.
And over here is the light.
Isn't it beginning to remind you of anything?
Yes, I think so.
It's been said that this is a Gnostic exegesis,
a Gnostic construction.
And what they do is,
they say, in the beginning was the word.
And then they make a beginning, a third thing.
They make a beginning of satsang.
So in the beginning was the word,
and the word is the path.
And then there are other truth,
and light,
and the Buddha.
And the Buddha is a kind of a generator,
and a trigger.
And strangely,
these are within this pluralism.
So they're kind of a farce, guys.
They're not yet recreated,
man and the church outside,
the church that we have in our archives,
in the Vatican Church.
It's like a world of ideas here.
Still inside God,
it's an inside God world.
So this is all inside what's called the pluralism.
And there's more to it than that in the pluralism.
Because each of these generates another visual chaos.
And chaos is what it's kind of,
it's like an archetype,
it's a figure,
it's also a kind of world,
or a kind of realm of being.
And it's a person.
So is that.
You find that in Buddhism.
It means age for us.
Age of world,
as they call it.
And then each of these areas,
there is another set,
there is time.
And there's one world.
Jesus does.
And the most of these is called Sophia.
And also these are in common pairs,
male and female.
So they're sets all over here.
The ones here,
that are generated from
logos for word and life,
are called Heath and Mingler,
Only derived from this.
And the other protocol,
and fondness of people.
It's a strange,
it's a strange collection.
There are 30 of them,
and you're supposed to be in front of them.
You're supposed to be in front of their 38,
that's what they are.
Before you even get to their creation,
you've already been able,
this is always going to happen,
it's like that.
He's the only begotten?
I don't know,
30 children?
There's a second only begotten.
See, this is often called
the only begotten in the system.
The only begotten son.
The son is in this.
And then there's another one,
strangely, over here,
one of these I have to follow.
Similarly, there's one called
everlasting youth,
and the everlasting youth
are over there,
and there's another one
right here.
So I don't know how that works,
isn't there?
Okay, now that we've erased the
there's logic, isn't there?
Well, I think there's a bit like this,
that you mentioned,
what we haven't heard about
from the atheists
is the correspondence,
the second kind of reflection,
a bit more religiously,
you know.
That's the second kind of reflection,
that's what we need to do.
I see.
In medicine.
What does it do?
It's a correspondence.
It's a word which isn't
a quote, remember?
It sends his letters
to the Athenians
on their devotions
to the emptiness
and fullness of wisdom.
You think he,
maybe he paid for
something very expensive
and used it all the time.
Because those letters
were paid to someone
who was a monastic.
So he uses the expression
that means
simply the best.
Now, if you can reduce
all that to
a little spirit,
if this is the thought
of the atheist,
or the atheist,
and they just defer.
Now, one of our
the last one,
gets into trouble.
She desires
to see her father.
Okay, but she can't
because somehow
there's something
that separates him
from everything
else that he is
and they trump him.
That's called coercion,
you know.
She wants to see him
and she can't
and so
part of her
breaks off
and comes down
and it's called
which it comes
from the Hebrew word
for wisdom.
And then from that
comes the demiurge.
The demiurge now,
the demiurge is God.
The demiurge is the creator.
So all of a sudden
all the young men
are coming out
from that portal
from the highest
movement of the portal
to the creator.
And then he creates
what's called
the right hand
and the left hand.
The right hand
psychic things,
okay, things of soul.
That's part of man,
that's part of the creation.
And the left
is body,
and it's very physical.
And straight from
lives in somehow
So these are the three parts,
the three levels
of the world,
the creative world,
you see.
This is the creation.
The three levels
of the cosmos
and also the three levels
of the man.
So you end up
with three levels
of the human being.
The spiritual
or the magic world.
The spiritual
or the magic
That part about Christ
he has to be prepared
From the Father,
or from the Lucifer,
he generates
two more angels,
Christ and the Lucifer.
So here relates to
So you see,
Christ is created
Christ is generated.
Christ is one of the angels
which is generated
and therefore belongs
to everyone in the world.
But there's something
else besides Christ
and that's Jesus.
Christ is like
the eternal word.
He's the divine
part of Christ.
But Christ is split
into two.
And the other one
is Jesus
who is sent
from the
to save
his own world.
Not the same as Christ.
They relate
and they join
and they
Jesus is the
who brings everything
in as he said
back in the book of
So that means
the spiritual
and see
the psyche
is between
and if you look
whether it goes
towards the spirit
or whether it goes
towards the world.
If it goes towards
the spirit
then in truth
he's saved
by the Savior
and brought back
into the world.
If it goes down
towards here
goes into
what's called
the everlasting
fire of the universe.
Think of everything
where you can
also think of
who he is
And in Buddhism
fire of desire
Okay there are
there's a formation
here which
you look at
is primarily
talking about
the formation
there are two
The first is
according to
the second
is the
according to
which means
it's something
learned from
the truth.
Now that's
how it gets
saved is by
learning from
the truth.
So if a man
he's already
according to
the truth
these three
things are
of those
in substance
then to be
formed in
you have to
accept this
and save it.
sort of
it all
works on
which doesn't
appear so
out here
but remember
the first
he started
out with
and this
of course
would be
in him
and that's
in the
have to
and he
says that
the reason
why the
Father's up
to his
were not
able to
what they
is what
one should
keep in
mind the
fact that
not only
as well.
appears many
times in a
the organ
of inquiry
put it all together. So, you want to have a thread that ties to everything that's important in the universe.
And that's what's important in this particular book.
The main thing there is the difference between the permanent and the outside.
And between the abyss and everything else, and the fact that only the noose knows the abyss,
and the fact that everything else comes from an inferior principle, comes from an inferior creator.
That seems to be the key thing. Notice how far that Demiurge is down on the ladder there.
I haven't seen where they ever said it was revealed.
So how they expressed it, it's kind of a mythic creation.
How they expressed it and what they claimed for it, I don't know.
When Irenaeus writes it, he says, well, we have the apostolic succession way back to Peter, the disciple of Jesus,
but these guys just came along, Adam and Eve. He doesn't say what they claimed to make for it,
but it was a vision.
Also, the Jewish mysticism is like this. Remember the mysticism of the ten sepulchers?
It's rather complex.
And there's always, the inner spark is the key thing.
There's something in you which relates directly to God.
And if you get to that inner thing in you, then you can reject everything else.
In other words, you can somehow have the apple without the tree,
or you can somehow get the frosting without the paper.
You can have the frosting without the paper.
That means you can have part of reality,
you can have the part that you can really relate to totally interiorly,
and reject in some way everything else.
So it's really, as they present it here, it's the solution to the angel world.
It's the happy home ground of the angel world.
I don't know if all of this makes sense.
I had something, a little...
Maybe I should just let John give his presentation.
Well, first let me say one more thing. I'm going to erase all of that.
So just a couple of ideas, whichever choice really determinates makes a lot of sense.
And excuse me if this is a little difficult, because we've got time to get to it.
I don't know if it's being made, but he's the first one,
that we have a very responsive thing, face to face, sets it all out there,
and then tries to play it.
The others will bump into it here and there, and they'll get a spark,
and they'll bump into it.
And I'll say, well, a piece of beer came into the flesh or something like that.
But they don't put it all out there in front of you,
and then try to refute all the requirements of what it is.
And it's important, of course, to try to trace the option that's being made,
because this determines the course of our humanity forever after.
Now, first of all, what's being rejected that should have been rejected?
Secondly, has anything been rejected, maybe, that is valuable,
and it can be required later on?
Because in a battle, often something will be excluded,
which doesn't necessarily need to be excluded.
Now, of course, that's the contention of Page's.
She says that the winner is left to history.
And so what he did was, or what Mernayis did,
was to determine the course of orthodoxy forever after rejecting about 50% of the truth.
I don't think that's true at all.
Nevertheless, we have to say there is something there.
And if there is something there, it reminds us that there is something that goes back to that.
If you take your practice from the East, whatever it is,
it tends to get excluded from orthodoxy forever after.
Now, I don't think that Mernayis excludes anything as such, principally.
But in putting orthodoxy on one side, something can get put on the other.
Yeah, see, Jesus, the Savior, had a body.
In fact, he had four levels, four stars.
He had the spiritual, the psychic, and the Bible.
And afterwards, he seems to have broken the Bible.
So, for them, there's no bodily reservation.
Everything gets absorbed in the spiritual, of course.
This is a paramount religious participation.
So the creation already is inferior.
And then the physical, even more so.
So you hear Mernayis all the time, insisting on the body,
and insisting on the fact of creating a human being right from the dust of the earth.
And I get excluded.
He insists on it.
Well, the fundamental rule doesn't matter.
In other words, right along was a consistent rejection of one part of reality.
They reject the body, they reject basically the whole physical creation.
Everything out there, it doesn't matter.
Because they can say, it's only a kind of projection,
a lower projection of something which is real out there.
You see, Clayton isn't going to use an expression here.
And also the scriptures, they reject history and they reject the Old Testament,
which is the physical history of God's people.
And even they invent an image, an inferior card, to run for the whole thing, you see.
So they don't have to attribute it to anyone.
It would be...
It would seem kind of dull and futile right now,
because this thing comes up in the New Testament all the time.
The attempt really to reject part of reality,
to have all of it, to push away all of it.
So that is the question.
Yeah, it got into a side road, I think.
I'm afraid of saying that in the wrong way,
but I remember that St. Augustine had his period of monotheism,
and that's a grandchild of his.
There's not too good a model of his name.
The dualistic masochistic monotheism.
And a little of that has come down through the centuries in the Christian world.
It came down to St. Augustine.
It's part of the Greek mind, too,
because the Greek mind has a lot of difficulties,
it's such an American model of monotheism.
I remember that reading this morning,
where St. Paul brought me to the Athenians,
and says, well, I've come to announce, to tell you about this man that I raised from the dead.
So to say, it was interesting.
Let me erase this.
Put down some hints for what kind of choices can be made.
And these are kind of what we call speculative,
or the kind of first guesses of any occasion.
But I want, if possible, to make you see the real watershed,
the real dividing line that has been creating it in society.
One way to express the choice is Moses versus men.
See, if you read people who have read about the origins of philosophy,
for instance, the Greek philosophers,
they say that they come out of a background of mythological thinking,
where everything sort of swirls around in these vague stories,
which are partly history, but very little history,
and partly some kind of archetypal fiction.
It's like the difference between the left brain and the right brain.
The difference between rational thinking,
the difference between the way Jung thinks when he organizes his books,
and the kind of thinking he's thinking about.
Because Jung is a great kind of explorer in this mythical, mythical novel.
In contrast to the rational thinking.
See, we've gone through a lot of what's called rational thinking.
The left brain thinking, we've almost corrected the other kind of thinking.
We tend to dismiss it.
From the mythological kind of thinking,
to the kind of firm ground of rational thinking,
you have to be careful that you don't narrow it down to the term rational too much.
So, that is one choice that people say Berenice is looking for.
In rejecting this kind of fictional creations of Valentinus,
you don't know whether they're true or not, in an absolute sense.
Maybe you don't much care, because you're satisfied with the dreams.
That's the way it is with people.
They dismiss the question of truth.
But he doesn't dismiss the question of truth.
He won't dismiss the question of reality.
He won't leave people with a dream just because it appears so.
Which I suspect a lot of the masters could go on.
Masters think, that's all right, we'll deal with that.
They don't ask the question, is this true?
They ask, what do I like? Is it fealible?
They don't ask the question, is it true?
They don't.
That's the question of all the problems.
That's the question of solid philosophy.
And the question which, in the Greek tradition, we've carried too far.
We've carried it so far.
So, we put it down in the name of the reality challenge.
On both of those, I would talk to you about Gnosticism,
and the kind of regression, the kind of going back,
the kind of sinking back into the childhood of mythical thinking.
Where you cease to ask the question of what is true, what is real,
and you cease to try to explain the truth,
and the word rational.
Secondly, the center of west versus east,
and I'll put that in front of you.
What I mean here is,
let us say,
versus that nous, or
I'd better say cat now,
that interior spark.
Now, here we make a short of our choice.
We really want to be honest, right?
We really want to reject that.
I don't say we're necessarily rejecting it,
but in following out the line that she began, her ideas,
her ways of looking at it,
and those Gnostics that he is writing against and recruiting,
I think are really interesting now.
It's something that she doesn't bring out.
That's his competition, of course.
And this means, also, his permanence in interiority.
I have to be careful here, because
there are things that by any means reject experience.
He doesn't reject experience as well.
His writing, his theology, is penetrated with experience.
It's penetrated with experience.
However, this remains always connected with me,
always connected with the logos.
It's never separated.
It never goes off on its own.
Similarly, this interiority,
the interiority of the human race,
it's never separated from the exterior,
never separated from the incarnation,
never separated from the Church,
from the Agnus Valley Tradition,
from all of this stuff.
That's right. We'll see what he's doing.
The first thing is two ways of salvation.
I'm going to call one the way of synthesis
versus the way of analysis.
Now, if you compare it to the natural gnostics that he's writing,
one of the basic differences you find is that they split things,
and then they get interested in the peculiarities and the workings.
They get interested in machinery.
It becomes, at a certain point, like salvation through structure, in a way.
This example of Valentinus is not that convincing, but
but notice how they have to keep splitting things,
and how the tendency is to
see somehow
the salvation in a separation out of something.
Analysis, chemical analysis,
often is the part in which you separate something out,
and then you have other things.
Separate out the elements.
Because you're separating out one precious element,
from a lot of something else, from a lot of chaff.
Now, that's not the way to remain, is it?
And that's not the way to see God's salvation either, is it?
His way is the way of recapitulation, or synthesis,
or the coming of the Word and Spirit into the whole of creation,
and somehow lifting up, filling in the air at the top,
which is different from the gnostic way
of coming down and saving that one precious element
from all the rest. That's the way of analysis, okay?
Or the way of division.
His is the way of synthesis, or the way of kind of totality,
the total embrace of the creation.
The total embrace of the human being.
Now, that's very Jewish, you see,
whereas the other way, the Greek way, tends to be the way of analysis.
The Greek way, of course, which tends to split.
And here we get the difference between two kinds of way of understanding.
Between a more Jewish conception of the Word of God coming down somehow,
everything being created out of the Word,
created from the Word,
and the Word coming down in the air and back towards you.
And the Jewish sense, and the Greek sense,
in which you somehow find the answers
by breaking things down into categories,
by sorting out the precious element,
by refining our whole culture,
all of us, very much, that second kind.
And a lot of spiritualities,
there are ways of trying to figure out how you work, you know?
How many chakras do you have?
How do you come up with a parable of the sun?
How do you do that?
That kind of confidence that you have in structures and the powers,
and understanding that's more important.
As if there's two of you coming together.
But faith is somewhat different.
Faith has a lot of those little sentences.
That's true.
That's true enough.
All right.
But notice how different it is.
It's just a feeling, because you need to recognize,
in comparison to the system of trouble,
a feeling of a very simple, total faith,
total attitude towards God,
which embraces the whole person somehow,
God and soul together,
rather than this kind of breaking down
into categorizing divisions,
in the salvation of the poor,
and the structure of the poor population.
His movement is like this.
His movement is synthesis and then assumption,
or recapitulation,
which is the one movement which
brings it back to the product,
rather than a kind of selective analytical
That's enough.
But the key word in it is recapitulation.
It's a marvelous word.
We'll talk about it more when we get to a couple of the texts,
because it pops out at you later when we get into the first text.
Excuse me for taking so long.
Jean, have you got enough?
About ten minutes, maybe not.
Okay, go ahead.
Why don't you come up here?
Do you want to use the restroom?
Thank you.
So, last time
Father Bruno mentioned The Vision of God
by Vladimir Lossky,
pages 30 to 37 in that book
that pertained to Irenaeus.
So I thought I'd take a look at it.
So I took a look at those pages
and there were a few points
on those pages that were meaningful to me,
and I thought I might be able to
offer them to you.
So I ask for your patience.
This may take as long as five minutes.
So one thing
Lossky spoke about in these pages
was the relationship, how Irenaeus treats the relationship
of the persons of the Holy Trinity.
And there are two quotes
from Irenaeus here.
This is a quote from Irenaeus.
The Father is the invisible nature of the Son.
The Son is the visible nature of the Father.
And this is from Book 4, Chapter 6.
Another quote from Irenaeus
that speaks of the relationship of the Son and Spirit.
The cooperation of the Son and Spirit
raises mankind to the life of God.
And that's from Book 5, Chapter 9.
So it seems the way Irenaeus is speaking of
is that the Incarnation
restores the image of God to fallen humanity.
It seems that the Incarnation establishes
the fact of our likeness to God
and then the Holy Spirit
sustains our life in likeness to God.
The Incarnation establishes the fact of this likeness
and then the Holy Spirit sustains us
in our Christian life.
Lossky also talks about different visions of God.
He speaks of the different persons of the Holy Trinity
and how they initiate us
to different visions.
The Father initiates us to the eschatological vision.
What I mean by this is the kingdom of heaven
in eternal glory.
The glorious kingdom with all the angels and saints.
The Son initiates us to the adoptive vision.
And this is the recognition of ourselves
as Christ's brother or sister
and children of the Father.
The Holy Spirit initiates us to the prophetic
or the proclaiming vision.
The responsibility to witness the Lord
with our lives.
One theme of Irenaeus
is the progressive revelation of the Word.
The Word is not static,
but it's dynamic.
The way of illustrating this would be that
the Word was present with the Father
from the beginning,
from the moment of creation,
moving through the patriarchs.
The Word is moving through the patriarchs,
manifesting Himself
through the patriarchs,
through the prophets,
showing Himself
in complete form in the Incarnation,
true man and true God,
Ascending for His Holy Spirit,