Synonyms for sethians or Related words with sethians
Examples of "sethians"
Philaster's (4th centruy CE) "Catalogue of heresies" places the Ophites, Cainites, and
as pre-Christian Jewish sects. However, since
identified Seth with Christ ("Second Logos of the Great Seth"), Philaster's belief that the
had pre-Christian origins, other than in syncretic absorption of Jewish and Greek pre-Christian sources, has not found acceptance in later scholarship.
"Phase 4". At the end of the second century Sethianism grew apart form the developing Christian orthodoxy, which rejected the docetian view of the
were a gnostic group who originally worshipped the biblical Seth as a messianic figure, later treating Jesus as a re-incarnation of Seth. They produced numerous texts expounding their esoteric cosmology, usually in the form of visions:
Within the text there are indications that the
had developed ideas of monism, an idea from Neoplatonism which is thought to have become part of Sethianism towards the end of the 3rd century.
Writing between 374 and 375 CE in the "Against
" section of his Panarion, also known as "Against Heresies" (39.5.1), Epiphanius of Salamis states that "[The
] compose books in the names of great men, and say that seven books are in Seth's name, but give other, different books the name 'Stranger.'" Epiphanius comments that the
"forged certain books in the name of Seth himself, and say they are given by him -- others in the name of him and his seven sons. For they say he had seven sons, called 'Strangers'". In 40.2.2 Epiphanius also mentions that the Archontics "have forged their own apocrypha (...) and by now they also have the ones called the 'Strangers.'"
According to Epiphanius of Salamis (c.375)
were in his time found only in Egypt and Palestine, although fifty years before they had been found as far away as Greater Armenia.
were a Christian Gnostic sect who may date their existence to before Christianity. Their influence spread throughout the Mediterranean into the later systems of the Basilideans and the Valentinians. Their thinking, though it is predominantly Judaic in foundation, is arguably strongly influenced by Platonism.
are so called for their veneration of the biblical Seth, who is depicted in their myths of creation as a divine incarnation; consequently, the offspring or 'posterity' of Seth are held to comprise a superior elect within human society.
"Phase 1". According to Turner, two different groups, existing before the second century CE, formed the basis for the
: a Jewish group of possibly priestly lineage, the socalled "Barbeloites", named after Barbelo, the first emanation of the Highest God, and a group of Bibilical exegetes, the "Sethites", the "seed of Seth."
(Latin "Sethoitae") are first mentioned, alongside the Ophites, in the 2nd century, by Irenaeus and in Pseudo-Tertullian (Ch.30). According to Frederik Wisse all subsequent accounts appear to be largely dependent on Irenaeus. Hippolytus repeats information from Irenaeus.
According to Smith, Sethianism may have begun as a pre-Christian tradition, possibly a syncretic cult that incorporated elements of Christianity and Platonism as it grew. According to Temporini, Vogt and Haase, early
may be identical to or related to the Nazarenes (sect), Ophites or to the sectarian group called heretics by Philo.
In the third century CE both Christianity and neo-Platonism reject and turn against Gnosticism, with neo-Platonists as Plotinus, Porphyry and Amelius attacking the
. John D. Turner believes that this double attack led to Sethianism fragmentation into numerous smaller groups (Audians, Borborites, Archontics and perhaps Phibionites, Stratiotici, and Secundians).
were one of the main currents of Gnosticism during the 2nd and 3rd century CE, alongside with Valentinianism. It originated in the second-century CE as a fusion of two distinct Hellenistic Judaic, and was influenced by Christianity and Middle Platonism.
Book V concerns itself with the Ophite heresies. Hippolytus in particular identifies the Naassenes, the Peratae, the
, and the beliefs of the heretic Justinus. Once again, Hippolytus identifies the source of the Ophite error as being rooted in the philosophy of the ancients.
While there appear to be Gnostic elements in some early Christian writing, Irenaeus and others condemned Gnosticism as a heresy, rejecting its dualistic cosmology and vilification of the material world and the creator of that world. Gnostics thought the God of the Old Testament was not the true God. It was considered to be the demiurge and either fallen, as taught by Valentinus (c. 100 - c. 160) or evil, as taught by the
For a long time, Norea was known from a summary of a book called "Noria" in the "Panarion" ("Against Heresies") of Epiphanius of Salamis (26.1.3-9). According to Epiphanius, the Borborites identified Norea with Pyrrha, the wife of Deucalion (a Greek figure similar to Noah), because "nura" means "fire" in Syriac. She burned Noah's Ark three times, then revealed the means of recovering stolen sparks through sexual emissions. Elsewhere (39.5.2) Epiphanius says that the
consider Horaia to be the wife of Seth.
In the late 1980s scholars voiced concerns about the broadness of "Gnosticism" as a meaningfull category. Bentley Layton proposed to category Gnosticism by deliniating which groups were marked as gnostic in ancient texts. According to Layton, this term was manily applied by heresiologists to the myth described in the "Apocryphon of John", and was used manily by the
and the Ophites. According to Layton, texts which refer to this myth can be called "classical Gnostic."
As is evident, the addition of the prologue radically alters the significance of events in Eden. Rather than emphasizing a fall of human weakness in breaking God's command,
(and their inheritors) emphasize a crisis of the Divine Fullness as it encounters the ignorance of matter, as depicted in stories about Sophia. Adam and Eve's removal from the Archon's paradise is seen as a step towards freedom from the Archons. Therefore, the snake in the Garden of Eden becomes a heroic, salvific figure rather than an adversary of humanity or a 'proto-Satan'. Eating the fruit of Knowledge is the first act of human salvation from cruel, oppressive powers.
And it is strange that he does not seem to suspect that these heretics have any connection with those who form the subject of his fifth book. In that book he treats of sects which paid honour to the serpent, giving to the first of these sects the name Naassenes, a title which he knows is derived from the Hebrew name for serpent. Possibly Hippolytus restricted the name Ophites to the sect described by Irenaeus, which has very little in common with that which he calls Naassenes. This book contains sections on several other Ophite systems, that of the Peratae,
and of Justinus.
(Hippolytus. "Philosophum." ) teach in like manner that from the first concurrence ("syndromē") of the three primeval principles arose heaven and earth as a "megalē tis idea sphragidos". These have the form of a "mētra" with the "omphalos" in the midst. The pregnant "mētra" therefore contains within itself all kinds of animal forms in the reflex of heaven and earth and all substances found in the middle region. This "mētra" also encounters us in the great "Apophasis" ascribed to Simon where it is also called Paradise and Edem as being the locality of man's formation.
Some early Christian Gnostic sects professed reincarnation. The
and followers of Valentinus believed in it. The followers of Bardaisan of Mesopotamia, a sect of the 2nd century deemed heretical by the Catholic Church, drew upon Chaldean astrology, to which Bardaisan's son Harmonius, educated in Athens, added Greek ideas including a sort of metempsychosis. Another such teacher was Basilides (132–? CE/AD), known to us through the criticisms of Irenaeus and the work of Clement of Alexandria (see also Neoplatonism and Gnosticism and Buddhism and Gnosticism).
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