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Hermetica, Elaine Pagels, Gnostic Gospels, Nag Hammadi Library, God, and mystery

excerpted from THE WAY OF WONDER: a return to the mystery of ourselves, by Jack Haas




“For it is man’s function to contemplate the works of god;

and for this purpose was he made that he might view the universe with wondering awe, and come to know its maker.”




           The ‘leap of faith’ we have heard so much about is therefore not like some blind, cowardly hope directed towards the expectation that some outward, omnibenevolent force will intercede and protect us (which it might, though that is beyond what we’re considering here), but faith, absolute faith, is the acceptance of walking with eyes fully open into the infinite darkness; faith is without expectation, hope, petition, or piety, or it is not faith, it is merely belief. Belief is a characteristic of concept, faith is a characteristic of mystery; for ‘belief’ is the acceptance of something we do not know, whereas ‘faith’ is the acceptance that we do not know.

          Therefore let us not belittle what is incomprehensible claiming that we comprehend it. This is not simply my own little nudge in your ribs to ‘give God his due’, so to speak, it is actually of pragmatic importance so as to fully realize all that has been discussed here; for just as we can receive the knowable only by ‘knowing’, so it is that we can receive the Unknowable only by not-knowing.



“Truth comes to the thought of those who know him beyond thought, not to those who think it can be attained by thought. …It is conceived of by him whom it is not conceived of; He by whom It is conceived of, knows it not. It is not understood by those who understand It. It is understood by those who understand it not.”

Kena Upanishad



Seeking the Mystery of God is like seeking the mystery in all things- it is not so much a matter of seeking, but of a ubiquitous, unconditional, objectless, intelligent not‑knowing. For the Unknowable is “Thou of whom no words can tell, no tongue can speak, whom silence only can declare”, asserts the Hermetica.

Thus Elaine Pagels, author of The Gnostic Gospels, suggests, “ cannot attain knowledge of the Unknown God. Any attempt to do so, to grasp the incomprehensible, hinders ‘the effortlessness which is within you’.” Pagels then quotes from Allogenes, one of the codices from The Nag Hammadi Library, which runs: “...(whoever) sees (God) as he is in every respect, or would say that he is something like gnosis has sinned against him...because he did not know God.”

Thus the true ‘gnosis’ of the Unknowable is actually ‘agnosticism’ in its most literal sense: a-gnosis, the absence of knowing.

            That is, when we unknow God and everything, then we will see God in everything, and we will not know what the word God means, and then we will know God.

            Knowledge is necessarily relative. Only non-separative incomprehension can attain the Absolute.

“It is¼clear”, states Carl Jung, “that the God-image corresponds to a definite complex of psychological facts, and is thus a quantity which we can operate with; but what God is in himself remains a question outside the competence of all psychology. …it must now be admitted that things exist in the psyche about which we know little or nothing at all¼and that they possess at least as much reality as the things of the physical world which ultimately we do not understand either.”


excerpted from:


way of wonder, sacred geometry, sri yantra



THE WAY OF WONDER: a return to the mystery of ourselves

by Jack Haas

author Jack Haas, Canadian, American writer, artist, photographer

















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