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About Andrew Phillip Smith
My books combine accurate and in-depth research with a sympathy for Gnosticism and spirituality.
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Chapters look at subjects such as:- the soul and spirit • Empathy and Gnosticism • The ancient and esoteric city of Alexandria • Alternative views of Judas • the Gospel of Thomas • Gnostic scriptures • dubious lost gospels and more
Praise for Andrew Phillip Smith:-
“Hans Jonas wrote that in order to understand Gnostic teachings, one needed something like a musical ear whereby to discern the subtleties of this worldview. Andrew Phillip Smith, in addition to his fine scholarship, possesses this musical ear.” Stephan Hoeller, author of Gnosticism: New Light on the Ancient Tradition of Inner Knowing
As well as investigating the origin of the Cathars, their relationship to the ancient Gnostics of the early centuries AD and the possibility that they survived the Inquisition in some way, the author also addresses recent renewed interest in Catharism.
Eccentric esotericists initiated a neo-Cathar revival in the Languedoc which inspired the philosopher Simone Weil. The German Otto Rahn, who has been called the real-life Indiana Jones, believed that the Cathars were protectors of the Holy Grail and received support from Heinrich Himmler. Arthur Guirdham, a psychiatrist from the West of England, became convinced that he and a circle of patients had all been Cathars in previous lives.
Tourists flock to the Languedoc to visit Cathar country. Bestsellers such as Kate Mosse's timeslip novel Labyrinth continue to fascinate readers. But what did the Cathars really believe and practice?
This ancient Gnostic text can be a companion for your own spiritual quest.
The Gospel of Philip is one of the most exciting and accessible of the Gnostic texts found at Nag Hammadi in Egypt in 1945. The source of Dan Brown’s intriguing speculations about Mary Magdalene in his best-selling novel The Da Vinci Code, the Gospel of Philip draws on ancient imagery—the natural world, the relationships between women, men and family, the ancient distinctions between lord and servants, free people and slaves, and pagans, Jews and Christians—to offer us insight into the spiritual interpretation of scripture that is at the foundation of Christianity.
The Gospel of Philip: Annotated and Explained unravels the discourses, parables and sayings of this second-century text to explore a spiritual, non-literal interpretation of the Bible. Along with his elegant and accurate new translation from the original Coptic, Andrew Phillip Smith probes the symbolism and metaphors at the heart of the Gospel of Philip to reveal otherwise unrecorded sayings of Jesus, fragments of Gnostic mythology and parallels to the teachings of Jesus and Paul. He also examines the joyful imagery of rebirth, salvation and mystical union in the bridal chamber that was the pursuit of Christian Gnosticism.
Now you can experience this ancient Gospel even if you have no previous knowledge of early Christianity or Gnostic thought. This SkyLight Illuminations edition provides important insights into the historical context and major themes of the Gospel of Philip, and gives you a deeper understanding of the Gospel’s overarching message: deciphering our own meaning behind the symbols of this world increases and enriches our understanding of God.
Among the casualties of the western intervention in Iraq and the recent activities of ISIS are the Mandeans of Southern Iraq. These peace-loving people are now fleeing to the west . They are the last Gnostics, the only surviving remnant of the ancient sects who taught the direct knowledge of God, created their own gospels and myths and were persecuted as heretical by the church in the second and third centuries. The Mandeans place weekly river baptisms at the centre of their religious life and the primary exemplar of their religion is none other than John the Baptist. What is the real history of this mysterious and long lived sect? Can the Mandean peoples really be traced back to the first century? And who was John the Baptist? This book follows the history of the Mandeans from their present plight back through their earliest encounters with the West, their place in Islamic counties, their possible influence on the Templars, back to their origins as a first century baptismal sect connected to John the Baptist and beyond.
The inspiration and insight of these Gnostic writings can become a companion on your own spiritual journey.
Just what is a soul, exactly? Where did the idea come from? How do we experience our souls? Two ancient Gnostic texts—The Exegesis on the Soul and The Hymn of the Pearl, both presented here in all-new translations—hold important clues to the development of the soul as a concept and reveal inspiring ways your own soul can remember and return to its unique, divine purpose.
The Exegesis on the Soul depicts the soul as a feminine figure who has fallen into the corrupted world and must find her way back to the Divine. It is the story of the soul’s struggle and redemption that will embolden your own spiritual pilgrimage. The Hymn of the Pearl is an allegorical story about a prince sent to retrieve a precious pearl but who soon forgets his purpose and falls asleep. It is a moving tale of the importance of remembering your soul’s identity and calling—and knowing that only you can fulfill your destiny.
Accessible facing-page commentary explains the Gnostic writings for you even if you have no previous knowledge of Gnosticism or early Christianity. Additional material draws on ancient religions, Platonism, Christianity, Judaism, Islam and modern philosophical and psychological notions of the soul to place the Gnostic teachings in a clear historical context. By following the development of this concept through time, you will more clearly perceive—and respond to—the divine spark found in your own soul.
Jesus’s words of wisdom can become a
companion on your own spiritual journey.
The gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are not the only record we have of the words spoken by Jesus. Designed to challenge, enlighten and inspire, they are also quoted in a wide variety of other ancient sources—including the Qur’an, writings by early Christian church fathers, and fragments of lost gospels only recently discovered. Some of these sayings are familiar; many are surprising; all expand our conventional understanding of the scope and essence of Jesus’s original teachings.
More than a “Christian” compilation, this collection of more than three hundred sayings reveals a Jesus whose words encapsulate spiritual truths that resonate across religious boundaries. From the encouraging “I am hope for the hopeless,” to the wise and practical “Love those who hate you and you will not have an enemy,” to the candid “Give no opportunity to the evil one,” these pointed sayings not only reveal how Jesus was understood and portrayed across a wide variety of cultures long ago—they will also penetrate to your heart, challenge your assumptions, and energize your own spiritual quest. Now you can experience the wisdom and power of Jesus’s sayings even if you have no previous knowledge of these little-known texts.
Note: due to file size and the Kindle's limited image facilities, the Kindle version of The Gnostic 4 is text only.