By Elaine Pagels
A profound exploration of the Bible's so much arguable book—from the writer of Beyond Belief and The Gnostic Gospels
The strangest booklet of the hot testomony, full of visions of the Rapture, the whore of Babylon, and apocalyptic writing of the top of instances, the publication of Revelation has involved readers for greater than thousand years, yet the place did it come from? And what are the meanings of its surreal pictures of dragons, monsters, angels, and cosmic war?
Elaine Pagels, New York Times bestselling writer and "the preeminent voice of biblical scholarship to the yank public" (The Philadelphia Inquirer), elucidates the real background of this arguable e-book, uncovering its origins and the roots of dissent, violence, and department within the world's religions. Brilliantly weaving scholarship with a deep realizing of the human must which faith speaks, Pagels has written what could be the masterwork of her distinctive occupation.
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Extra info for Revelations: Visions, Prophecy, and Politics in the Book of Revelation
Fifty five Youel then starts off to teach him the constitution of divine fact and delivers that regardless of the tricky direction forward, “if you thoroughly dedicate your self to looking, you shall understand the nice that's in you, after which … you shall be aware of your self as one that comes from the God who really exists. ”56 Allogenes says that “I didn't melancholy of the phrases that I heard, yet I ready myself, and deliberated with myself for 100 years. ”57 After what gave the impression of unending time, Allogenes studies that he, like Ezekiel and Paul of Tarsus, was once taken out of the physique and obtained visions; but this was once in simple terms the start. Youel then taught him extra: if you happen to turn into afraid, withdraw again … and should you turn into entire the place you're, nonetheless your self. don't wish to be lively, lest you reduce your receptiveness to the Unknowable One. fifty eight training what she taught, Allogenes says he started to adventure “within me a stillness of silence, and … I knew my precise self … and that i used to be full of revelation through a first-rate revelation,” it seems that a firsthand adventure of coming to grasp “the one that exists in me. ”59 Allogenes concludes with a paradox: that the single he has come to understand inside himself can't be identified other than via what Jewish and Christian mystics later referred to as the through negativa, the way in which of “unknowing. ” Allogenes says he wrote this e-book for his personal disciple, “full of pleasure … I wrote this ebook which used to be appointed for me, my son Messos, in order that i would disclose to you what was once proclaimed earlier than me in my presence. ”60 those books of revelation have taken us a ways from the Revelation of John of Patmos—but the revelation referred to as Thunder, excellent brain (more actually translated “Thunder, whole Mind”61) takes us even extra. For the place John of Patmos sees in simple terms opposites—Christ opposed to devil, the stored and the damned, holiness and grime, the virgin bride and the whore of Babylon—this revelation sees opposites in dynamic interplay and so claims to talk for the “complete brain. ” Thunder used to be written as a poem to chant or a hymn to sing, within the voice of “thunder,” heard in lots of cultures as a divine voice—from the Greeks, who known as Zeus “the thunderer,” to the God of Israel, frequently manifested in thunder, who, the Gospel of John says, spoke to Jesus as “a voice from heaven,” which different bystanders heard basically as thunder. sixty two but Thunder, excellent brain envisions thunder as a female energy, maybe as the Greek observe for “thunder,”bronte, is feminine—a energy in whom all opposites meet: i used to be despatched forth from the facility, and i've come to those that mirror upon me, and i've been stumbled on between those that search after med… don't be blind to me at any time … For i'm the 1st and the final. i'm the commemorated one, and i'm the scorned one. i'm the whore and the holy one. i'm the spouse and the virgin. i'm the mummy and the daughter … i'm the barren one, and plenty of are her little ones. i'm she whose marriage ceremony is excellent, and i've no longer taken a husband … i'm the bride and the bridegroom, and it truly is my husband who begot me.