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The Gospel of Philip: Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and the Gnosis of Sacred Union
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The Gospel of Philip: Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and the Gnosis of Sacred Union

4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  58 ratings  ·  5 reviews
A new translation and analysis of one of the most controversial of the apocryphal gospels

• Emphasizes an initiatic marriage between the male and female principles as the heart of the Christian mystery

• Bears witness to the physical relationship shared by Jesus and Mary Magdalene

• Translated from the Coptic and analyzed by the author of the bes
Paperback, 192 pages
Published August 16th 2004 by Inner Traditions (first published May 1st 2003)
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Christine Theberge Rafal
A beautiful book, an interpretation of another of those ancient Coptic texts found at Nag Hammadi. The introduction suggests that the Coptic was a translation of the ancient Greek, mentioning that Philip is a Greek name. Interesting to read it right after Rumi's Four Essential Practices, because it also deals with the breath and the body. Neither adore nor despise the body, but try to make what is material like what is spiritual. Unlike much of the canon of Christianity, the embrace between love ...more
Leloup writes to correct the interpretation of the document within Valentinian Gnosticm as suggested by Jacques Menard. His major contribution to the understanding of the text has to do with the role the breath has in giving life and sharing life between man and God and among men, though many of his parallels are much later than Philip. He also legitimately draws attention to the many references to the “bridal chamber” in Philip. Where his slight commentary fails, however, is his attempt to read ...more
Sep 07, 2008 Angel rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: open minded people
Shelves: religion-studies
From my journal notes in 2005, when I read this book. It was a new acquisition at my previous place of work. Though I am not religious, I always strive to read items about religion to learn more about others as well as about history:

>>This Gospel, along with others, was suppressed by the mainstream church for being against dogma. Yet, upon reading this book, one gets such a better sense of the roots of Christianity, and those roots were for inclusiveness and more egalitarian roles for men
The Gospel of Philip is not as high on my list as Leloup's translations of the other Gnostic gospels. It is an earlier publication, and his style of commentary has yet to be established in my opinion. He doesn't do as thorough a job of elucidating the text as he does with later publications. I think if I had read this one before the others, it might have rated higher. That said, the content of this particular gospel is intriguing, and invites us to experience the sexual embrace as one of highest ...more
I do not claim to understand much of this, but it was a super interesting and ponderous read nonetheless. Leloup does a fantastic job (again) at offering helpful guidance.
Yet this was still very enigmatic.
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Jean-Yves Leloup, an Orthodox theologian, is well known in Europe, North and South America as a popular author on spirituality and psychology. He is the founder of the Institute of Other Civilization Studies and the International College of Therapists. He has written more than fifty books and has also translated and commented the gospels of Thomas, Miriam of Magdala, Philip and John.
More about Jean-Yves Leloup...
Compassion and Meditation: The Spiritual Dynamic between Buddhism and Christianity Being Still: Reflections on an Ancient Mystical Tradition The Sacred Embrace of Jesus and Mary: The Sexual Mystery at the Heart of the Christian Tradition Judas and Jesus: Two Faces of a Single Revelation The Gospel of Mary Magdalene

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