Concerning the Nag Hammadi Library (The Nag Hammadi Scriptures)

The Nag Hammadi Library, an accumulation of thirteen ancient books (called “codices”) containing over fifty texts, had been discovered in upper Egypt in 1945. This important breakthrough includes|discovery th a multitude of main “Gnostic Gospels” – texts once considered to have already been totally destroyed throughout the early Christian find it difficult to determine “orthodoxy” – scriptures such as the Gospel of Thomas, the Gospel of Philip, in addition to Gospel of Truth. The development and interpretation regarding the Nag Hammadi collection, initially completed in the 1970’s, has furnished impetus to a significant re-evaluation of very early Christian history and the type of Gnosticism.

For the introduction towards the Nag Hammadi finding and also the texts in this library that is ancient we provide several resources. First, read an excerpt from Elaine Pagels’ exceptional popular introduction to the Nag Hammadi texts, The Gnostic Gospels. Then, for a synopsis associated with Gnostic scriptures and a conversation of ancient Gnosis, look at this excerpt from Dr. Marvin Meyer’s introduction towards the Gnostic Bible. For another brief general overview, we provide an Introduction to Gnosticism and also the Nag Hammadi Library by Lance Owens.

The Gnostic Society Library Bookstore provides a selection of the foremost books on the Nag Hammadi library and Gnostic tradition for further reading.

Texts into the Collection:

All of the texts discovered at Nag Hammadi can be purchased in the Gnostic Society Library; the collection is indexed in alphabetical purchase, and also by location when you look at the initial codices. An interest classified selection of the writings can also be listed below. You’ll search the collection that is entire of for key words or expressions utilizing our customized Nag Hammadi Research function.

We now have unique collections of resources working with two especially crucial texts, the Gospel of Thomas, and The book that is secretApocryphon) of John. A few basic lectures on the Nag Hammadi materials are offered, below.

For several regarding the writings that are major the Nag Hammadi collection one or more interpretation is supplied inside our collection; where numerous translations are produced available, we now have detailed the translators’ names in parenthesis underneath the title associated with scripture. A number of these translations derive from the work initially sponsored because of the Coptic Gnostic Library Project of this Institute for Antiquity and Christianity, Claremont, Ca.

Several prominent scholars have actually awarded us authorization to provide their initial translations of Nag Hammadi texts right here into the Gnostic Society Library. We’re specific indebted to your support and efforts of Dr. Willis Barnstone, Dr. John Turner, Dr. Stevan Davies, additionally the belated Dr. Marvin Meyer. Copyright info is offered utilizing the translations that are various the collection; contributors to the collection retain all copyright with their works.

The Global Edition regarding the Nag Hammadi Scriptures (published in 2007, modified by Marvin Meyer) provides respected translations for most of the Nag Hammadi texts, along side introductions and records from the translations. We additionally suggest The Gnostic Bible, modified by Willis Barnstone and Marvin Meyer; this volume that is comprehensive exemplary introductory material and offers gorgeous translations when it comes to most critical Nag Hammadi scriptures. In preview, an excerpt is provided by us from Dr. Marvin Meyer’s introduction into the Gnostic Bible.

Other essential main Gnostic texts – ancient writings discovered within the century prior to the data recovery associated with Nag Hammadi Library, including texts just like the Gospel of Mary – are cataloged when you look at the Classical Gnostic Scriptures portion of the The Gnostic Society Library. Numerous scriptures within the Nag Hammadi collection had been influence by Valentinus (c. 100–160 AD) along with his tradition of Gnosis. As a result of his importance, we now have a section that is large of collection committed particularly to Valentinus while the Valentinian Tradition.

If you’d like to look at ancient manuscripts on their own, electronic pictures associated with the original Nag Hammadi Codices are available on the internet in the Claremont Colleges Digital Library.

A Summary of this Nag Hammadi Scriptures

When analyzed in accordance with subject material, you can find buy essays approximately six split major kinds of writings gathered when you look at the Nag Hammadi codices:

Writings of innovative and mythology that is redemptive including Gnostic alternate variations of creation and salvation: The Apocryphon of John; The Hypostasis of this Archons; From the Origin around the globe; The Apocalypse of Adam; The Paraphrase of Shem. (for the discussion that is in-depth of, start to see the Archive commentary on Genesis and Gnosis.)

Findings and commentaries on diverse Gnostic themes, including the nature of reality, the character associated with heart, the connection regarding the heart into the globe: The Gospel of Truth; The Treatise regarding the Resurrection; The Tripartite Tractate; Eugnostos the Blessed; the 2nd Treatise associated with the Great Seth; The Teachings of Silvanus; The Testimony of Truth.

Liturgical and texts that are initiatory The Discourse in the Eighth and Ninth; The Prayer of Thanksgiving; A Valentinian Exposition; The Three Steles of Seth; The Prayer associated with the Apostle Paul. (The Gospel of Philip, detailed beneath the sixth category below, has great relevance right here additionally, for this is with in impact a treatise on Gnostic sacramental theology).

Writings working primarily with all the feminine deific and principle that is spiritual specially because of the Divine Sophia: The Thunder, Ideal Mind; the idea of Norea; The Sophia of Jesus Christ; The Exegesis in the Soul.

Scriptures that incorporate sayings of Jesus in addition to explanations of incidents in their life: The Dialogue associated with Saviour; The Book of Thomas the Contender; The Apocryphon of James; The Gospel of Philip; The Gospel of Thomas.

This will leave a little quantity of scriptures associated with the Nag Hammadi Library which might be called “unclassifiable.” Moreover it must certanly be taken into account that the passage through of translation and time into languages completely different through the initial have actually rendered many of these scriptures abstruse however you like. A few of them are difficult reading, specifically for those visitors unfamiliar with Gnostic imagery, nomenclature and so on. Lacunae may also be contained in many of these scriptures – in some regarding the texts considerable parts have actually been lost because of age and deterioration regarding the manuscripts.

The absolute most easily comprehensible associated with the Nag Hammadi scriptures is without a doubt The Gospel of Thomas, using the Gospel of Philip and also the The Gospel of Truth as near moments so as of effortless comprehension. (Fortunately, these texts had been all perfectly preserved and possess few lacunae.) Nowadays there are several published editions and translations of all of the scriptures available; the typical complete version is the The Nag Hammadi Scriptures, modified by Marvin Meyer, posted in 2007.

Audio Lectures concerning the Nag Hammadi Scriptures

The Library has collected a series of introductory lectures and commentaries by Dr. Stephan Hoeller on Nag Hammadi texts; these are all in mp3 format to help place the Nag Hammadi materials into a better focus. (There are an infinitely more substantial catalog of lectures by Dr. Stephan Hoeller presenting Gnosticism and the Nag Hammadi Library offered at BC Recordings.)

Christ: The Misunderstood Redeemer – a knowledge associated with Gnostic perception of Christ is vital to any significant reading of texts within the Nag Hammadi collection. In this lecture Dr. Stephan Hoeller makes use of a number of the ongoing works when you look at the Nag Hammadi Library to introduce the Gnostic Christ. (MP3 structure, 75 min.)

Gnosticism: New Light regarding the Ancient Tradition of Inner Knowing, a quick lecture that is introductory the resources of Gnostic tradition (hosted at BC Recordings).

Thomas and Philip: Gospels regarding the Gnostic Christ, talking about soteriology that is gnostic revealed in these principal Nag Hammadi texts; a presentation presenting the ten component collection of lectures in the most widely used and valued writings through the Nag Hammadi Library (hosted at BC Recordings).

Redemption and Redeemer into the Gospel of Thomas – The Gospel of Thomas the most essential Gnostic texts discovered at Nag Hammadi. In this lecture, Dr. Hoeller explores the “soteriology” – the thought of a redeemer in addition to procedure for redemption – as developed within the text regarding the Thomas Gospel. (MP3 structure, 75 min.)

The Sorrow of Sophia: Feminine Divine Image of suffering gnosticism that is a unique comprehension of the feminine aspects within divinity. A reading from The Exegesis on the Soul (NHL II,6) in this lecture Dr. Hoeller explores the Gnostic image of the suffering and the alienation of the divine feminine, using as his text. (MP3 structure, 80 min.)


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