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Not in His Image: Gnostic Vision, Sacred Ecology, and the Future of Belief
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Not in His Image: Gnostic Vision, Sacred Ecology, and the Future of Belief

4.12  ·  Rating Details  ·  127 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Basing much of Not in His Image on the Nag Hammadi and other Gnostic writings, John Lamb Lash explains how a little-known messianic sect propelled itself into a dominant world power, systematically wiping out the great Gnostic spiritual teachers, the Druid priests, and the shamanistic healers of Europe and North Africa. They burned libraries and destroyed temples in an att ...more
Hardcover, 350 pages
Published November 1st 2006 by Chelsea Green (first published October 5th 2006)
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Mar 28, 2016 Holly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: religion
interesting premise, some really lousy scholarship. Lots of unsupported assertions and at times a refusal to consider some very significant problems with his interpretation. Still, I was intrigued by the idea that Jehovah is actually an inorganic alien parasite who didn't create our world, just commandeered control of it. And there are some ideas Lash develops fairly convincingly--the idea, for instance, that the god of the old testament hates trees. If you're interested in the history of religi ...more
Ly Angeles
It started out as juicy and focussed and I enjoyed it very much until the author began to simply rewrite what has been written many times before. Lash went from objective, pagan and academic to writing about theist characters as though they had credence. His criticism lost me there. It's as though he became tired. It's difficult to maintain, I realise, in a world that andocentrises its mysteries and then talks about them as though they were distant relatives. Didn't finish it.
May 18, 2012 Philip rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A brilliant book which examine the roots of all Abrahamic religions as derived from the destruction of the Mystery Schools in Alexandria. Clearly explains the development of salvationist and redemption theology against the backdrop of ancient eco-feminist Gaia belief. The research is amazing and the conclusions brilliant and supported by the Qumran and Nag Hamaidi remnants. Amazing stuff...
Sep 03, 2014 Ben rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I went into this book, like I usually do, with interest, curiosity and something like hope. I read about a quarter of the text, enjoying it thoroughly, though occasionally raising an eyebrow at a troublesome remark or two, before, having done little research into Lash other than checking some of his references to Gnostic texts and Pagan ideas, I found myself faced with THIS...

John Lamb Lash is a racist, an antisemite, and the disconcerting undertones whic
Really liking this book, can't put it down!
Feb 19, 2014 sharad rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the quintessential book of that must be read by anyone who previously or presently has espoused the Abrahamic religions: Judaism/Christianty/Islam. The author is the most learned scholar of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Nag Hammadi Codices, and other Coptic texts, currently willing to share true meaning contained in these textual materials.

The trends humankind currently follow will be completely disseminated, analyzed, and exposed; and what has been kept hidden from view, in order that we ma
George Ramos
An anti-Christian polemic, a scholarly study of the beliefs and cosmology of the Nag Hammadi-era Gnostics, and a clarion call towards gnosticism in it's truest sense for our modern world, this book astonished me while it moved and inspired me to study what Gnosticism truly was. It goes beyond trying to show that Christians were a "quaint, varied lot" like many modern, popular writers try to do (like Elaine Pagels and Karen Armstrong). Instead, John Lash shows that the Gnostics and the rest of th ...more
May 30, 2013 Cameron rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For some this could be a construed as disturbing recant of early Christianity, that is nothing like that taught in "respectable" schools. However, I found his version entirely plausible and worthy of follow-up. He also explains in expert fashion the history of the gnostics, the murder of Hypatia and the suppression of Gnosticism by the nascent Church. Like a historical detective he cross references his sources and discusses implications and repercussions. It is an enlightening non-fiction work w ...more
Jun 23, 2009 Gary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: esoteric
A bold, controversial examination of consensus religion and society, and an impassioned wake-up call to rediscover and realign with natural life forces. Wide-ranging and well researched, yet at times meandering and repetitive, this is a compelling and important work that provides insightful perspectives intended to challenge ingrained modes of thinking and behaviours.
Jul 13, 2011 Kathy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Only a third of the way through. Intelligently researched it's the best concerning Christianity's hype and destruction that I've read in ages.
C.J. Prince
Jul 31, 2010 C.J. Prince rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Check out the sub title. This looks like heavy reading, however, Lash's style is immediately engaging.
Heiki Eesmaa
Thick layer of interpretations and opinions are drawn from weak evidence. I were much more happier with the book if it were presented as an opinion piece.

The author, I am guessing an auto-didact with little scientific background, has indeed read widely and presents the Gnostic thesis with much enthusiasm but in a one-sided way and with little intellectual rigor.

My conclusion is that the patterns he sees in ancient history tell more of the inner life of a modern American than of ancient world. R
Janet Kane
Best book I have read in a long time. It makes sense of the Gnostic myth.
May 04, 2015 Matthew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
pretty crucial
Mar 25, 2014 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gnostic cosmology, pagan mysticism, the insanity that is salvationism, and the dark history of judeo-christianity. This is a fascinating book, I highly recommend it.
Nov 17, 2012 Lucy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Difficult to read at time but it's brilliant! It's taken me almost 3 years to go through the book because of it's high intellectual writing style. Worth the time.
Jonathon Moore
Aug 26, 2011 Jonathon Moore marked it as to-read
I haven't read this book, but I would like to. Jim Nichols on the Veritas Show recommended this book stating, "the Gnostics were the original whistleblowers".
Jude Arnold
May 29, 2011 Jude Arnold marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
This book comes highly recommended from someone I greatly admire, Laura Eisenhower, the late presidents, great granddaughter!
Dec 13, 2008 Losicaros rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
All you may want to know about gnosis, mysteries, europa & religions history, and sacred ecology. A great work by JLL.
Aug 27, 2015 James rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One quote so far sticks in my head on page 148 to 149 find it and laugh out loud, brilliant
Cody Born
Dec 18, 2012 Cody Born rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing research and analysis and immensely important
Nick ZepTepi
Nick ZepTepi rated it really liked it
Apr 23, 2016
Katrina Phillips
Katrina Phillips marked it as to-read
Apr 21, 2016
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Jonathan Walliser rated it liked it
Apr 16, 2016
Glenn Riis
Glenn Riis rated it it was amazing
Apr 05, 2016
Gianluca rated it did not like it
Apr 15, 2016
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“The altars, pillars, and idols condemned by Yahweh were placed in groves of trees. The name of the Canaanite goddess Asteroth means “sacred tree,” although this translation is redundant because all trees were sacred to the ancient people of the Near East and Europa. Trees were revered as divine before carved images of trees were set up to be worshipped. This shift was perhaps not due to psychic distancing, as we might suppose, but to environmental sensitivity in the region of Saharasia where verdant forests and rich grasslands were lost in a catastrophic climate change after 4000 B.C.E. Was Yahweh’s condemnation symptomatic of reverse psychology? Did seeing fertile fields and sumptuous forest disappear in a few generations produce a sense of powerlessness that inverted itself into a vengeful lust for power over nature? “I will not stand by and watch nature destroy the woods and fields, so I will assert my own power to destroy, acting in nature’s stead.” This may be a plausible explanation of the “prior wounding” that led to the violent antinature fixation of patriarchal religion.

The Hebrew word asherah occurs over forty times in the first five books of the Bible, sometimes to indicate “the potent cultic presence of the female deity named Asherah,” sometimes to indicate the carved wooden idols used to represent her. Asteroth-Asherah-Astarte was native to the Near East and Palestine, but she belonged to a vast pantheon of tree goddess found worldwide: the lovely hamadryads of Greek myth, such as Daphne the laurel; the Egyptian Isis who is often represented as a tree trunk sprouting bountiful leafy limbs; and the sensuous, sloe-eyed apsaras of Hindu mythology, including Queen Maya, the mother of the Buddha. Yahweh’s curse on the asherah was not his personal peeve, but a pathological hatred that stuck to the deepest sources of human imagination where the psyche is rooted in nature. When the cults of the Goddess were suppressed, her idols thrown down, her leafy groves laid bare, the Jews invented the menorah to replace what they had destroyed. The seven-branched candlestick is a schematic abstraction from nature, the spectral imitation of an asherah, a sacred tree.”
“The most effective way to defeat patriarchy is to defy and disown its self-legitimating narrative.” 1 likes
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