21 December 2013

What Is Gnosis?


The human being can become conscious of the living reality of the Gnosis through the Spirit-spark hidden in his heart.

In Greek, Gnosis means Knowledge, Knowing, and is a vitally necessary experience, a Spiritual Path by which the true human Spiritual essence becomes conscious and active. Hence, Gnosis is primarily a very alive and relevant reality, and not a faith in a philosophical or religious system or knowledge in the sense of information.

Nor is Gnosis solely a religious movement of the past. The living reality of the Gnosis can be transmitted to a human being through the Spirit-spark, which lies hidden in his heart, yes, it is this Spirit-spark, the true human essence itself; it is the Spiritual World, God, in which this Spirit-spark is embedded.


If this Spirit-spark, or Light-spark, of which the ancients spoke, is activated in the heart of a human being, such a person is first deeply touched. He is awakened by the Power of the Gnosis, of the Spirit. More powerfully than ever, he suddenly sees his life and the world in which he lives with other eyes. He gains self-knowledge.

On the one hand, he recognizes the transient aspect of his existence and his being: his life controlled by I-centrality in a world controlled by I-centrality. On the other hand, he discovers the Imperishable aspect of his existence: he experiences himself as an Imperishable being. He feels that he has originated from a Spiritual World and that he is destined to live consciously in this Spiritual World. He becomes aware that he can only grow toward this Destination, if he gives up his I-centrality and lets his True Self blossom forth. The perishable aspect of his existence must put itself at the service of the Imperishable aspect. This inevitably results in a new mode of life. A process of inner change begins.

In The Gospel of Truth we can read:

"Hence, if one has Knowledge, he is from Above. If he is called, he hears, he replies, and he turns toward Him who called him. He desires to please Him and he finds rest. He who is thus going to have Knowledge knows whence he came and whither he is going. He knows it as a person who, having become intoxicated, has turned from his drunkenness, and having come to himself, has restored what is his own".

Gnosis as Liberation

The Gnostic experiences the Gnosis as Liberation: he is liberated from the delusion that this transient world is the true world. This is why the Gnosis is the Doctrine of Redemption, which grants the seeker liberating insight. Contrary to the idea of many authors, Gnosis is optimistically thinking and experiencing. For the Gnostic possesses the Inner Knowledge of the Divine-spark in his being, of the True Self that stems from the Original Light-field of the Divine World and will return to it. The person who devotes himself to this Return, will be taken up in the process of Transfiguration, in the process of the healing of the living, Immortal Soul.

That is why the ancient Gnostics said:

"Man is a fallen god", who does not belong in this world. His original fatherland is the Other World, which does not belong to the visible universe. This is a fundamental Truth, an ancient Truth, which is as old as humanity itself: the Truth of the two separate nature-orders. The human being with his microcosmic Light-spark wanders through the world of good and evil and is constantly tormented by its Opposites.

One of the most important experiences to which the path of the Gnosis leads, and which is beckoning as the Shining Goal at the end of the Great Quest, is peace, the return to true equilibrium in and with God. This is not peace in the sense of sitting on the couch after a tiring day. This peace means that we achieve harmony with the Divine movement flowing from the Gnosis. Whoever places himself in this Flow, can no longer be touched by evil. He is raised above himself into the Other One. Good and evil have been dissolved in the One that is God.

From "What Is Gnosis" - Gnosis As Inner Religion - Jan van Rijckenborgh


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