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Gnosis

Gnosis

Gnosis , a journal of the Western Inner Tradition, was first issued in 1985 and quickly emerged as one of the highest quality newsstand periodicals serving the groups and individuals whose spiritual vision has emerged out of the Western alternative spiritual tradition that has collectively been known as Gnosticism. Associated with Gnosis as its sponsor was the Lumen Foundation, a nonprofit organization existing primarily to raise the income to keep Gnosis financially solvent.

Gnosticism enjoyed a widespread popularity in the early centuries of the Common Era, but lost out to Orthodox Christianity. Since that time it has periodically reappeared in the West as a series of movements that challenge some of the basic concepts of Christian Orthodoxy. The Divine is generally thought of as transcendent, impersonal, and ultimately unknowable rather than as personal and involved in human history. God did not create the world by a sovereign act; rather, the visible universe is the end result of God's emanations of His own spiritual essence. The universe is structured in layers with the visible universe at the lowest level. Salvation consists in gaining the wisdom (gnosis) that provides the information for escaping the world of matter, in which human entities are trapped on a wheel of reincarnation. Commonly, Gnostics believe that humans have forgotten their divine origin as an emanation of the deity and thus need to reawaken their memory by various spiritual disciplines.

The Gnostic vision experienced a notable revival in the seventeenth century in such movements as Rosicrucianism and speculative Freemasonry. Modern representatives include Theosophy, ceremonial magic, and the New Age movement of the 1980s. Spiritualism , Christian Science, and New Thought have all grown from Gnosticism, and the movement has its Eastern correlates in the various mystical movements such as Sufism and Sant Mat. In the twentieth century, several groups emerged trying to self-consciously revive the traditions and teachings of second-century Gnostic Christianity. Gnosis at-tempted to speak to the modern heirs of the Gnostic spiritual impulse. It claimed among its writers some of the finest scholars and spiritual leaders representing the Gnostic impulse.

Each issue of Gnosis was built around a set of articles, the lead articles usually being grouped around a single theme. Especially prominent were the book reviews, which were of the kind one expected of a literary journal rather than a newsstand magazine. In the end, it failed to find a popular audience that would allow it to survive. After struggling to exist for 15 years, its last issue was released in 1999.

Gnosis was issued quarterly from publishing headquarters in the San Francisco Bay area under the direction of Jay Kenny, editor-in-chief, and Richard Smoley, editor.

Sources:

Gnosis. San Francisco, California, n.d.

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gnosis

gnosis knowledge of spiritual mysteries. XVIII. — Gr. gnôsis investigation, knowledge, f. IE. *gnō- KNOW.
So gnostic adj. cognitive, intellectual XVII; sb. one of a sect of early Christians claiming gnosis XVI. — ecclL. gnōsticus — Gr. gnōstikós, f. gnōstós; see -IC.

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gnosis

gnosis knowledge of spiritual mysteries. Recorded from the late 16th century, the word comes from Greek gnōsis ‘knowledge’, related to gignōskein ‘know’.

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