Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Intro to Lay Gnosis

What is it and what has it done for me? is the home of those strange "tingly hand people" on YouTube you may have seen around. Here's the starting point and beginner video. (If you go onto Steve's actual channel page, pardon his outlandish number of Mireille Mathieu vids. He's crazy about her.) He's created an entire series exploring lay gnosis. Explanations to diagrams to giving you hints on what to look for in the coming weeks/months. He's very thorough. No question is too mundane for this guy. Honest! Even criticism. He handles it well. Not everybody is ready for lay gnosis. But it is always ready for you.

I had never heard of lay gnosis before stumbling across that vid. Never occurred to me that something physical could happen from me tapping into my brain. Or God. Or the God connection within.

Here's the main gist of what lay gnosis is: You have so much potential within your mind because of your 'godling' (God-ling) self with it's connection to the fullness that is Pleroma(everything, anything, living, dead, material, immaterial, etc) that when you tap into this unused portion of your mind you are in fact reaching inward to seek out that connection to God that you have literally

Imagine that. You have God's email address/fax number/home address and you had forgotten it. The address book wasn't tossed out the window. But the indoctrination you have received all your life from dogma driven religions has made you forget that you still have the address book in your possession. The trick is opening the book. You know where it is once you've found it. You feel it. You know it exists.

To open the book is what lay gnosis is all about. It opens that door. And saves you thousands of hours of meditation, reading, and all the stuff that goes along with the initial baby steps of self awareness exploration that can be so painful. It's as if a giant hurdle has been leaped, instantly. ZAP! And an instant connection is made.

When I first threw my dogmatic religion to the curb about ten years ago, I began exploring yoga. Ashtanga, specifically. The physical awareness I developed led me to a level of confidence and serenity which made me feel comfortable enough to ask for more instruction. I need not have asked. It was right there in front of me. I discovered that when I reached for more books and videos on yogic instruction in meditation or even advanced techniques
I had already been doing it! How is this possible?

The answer is that yogis have tapped into this area of the brain for thousands of years. Even novices are capable of it to a certain extent. I was halfway home and I didn't even know it.

This piece of clay art is the closest example I can find to show you what lay gnosis feels like.
"When Holes Won't Heal" by MidnightOrange.

Notice that the heart which is removed from the individual is halfway up the string holding the larger heart? It's upside down due to artistic license. But it's there. And it is connected to the larger one. This is Pleroma. The Big Love which is your destiny and birthright.

Pleroma is the Gnostic God and this differs in relation to the Judeo-Christian God. So we refer to our all encompassing deity as Pleroma, the All, the perfect god, the good god, and more uncommonly 'Him', among other things. We interchangeably capitalize these names at whim. We're not too hung up on names as long as we can get our point across as to which deity we are speaking of. And most of the time when Gnostics speak to one another we can figure out which "Him" we're speaking of simply by the context.

When we refer to the Judeo-Christian God we call him: Yahweh, the demiurge, the intermediate one, God, Him, and anything else you've heard Christians say. ( is a great place to start if this is all new to you.)

So what happens with lay gnosis? How is it different than say, going to church/temple/etc on a certain day and reading scriptures and praying, or even speaking in tongues? The easiest way to explain this fundamental difference is that when you are praying within a dogmatic religious scheme your prayers aren't going high enough up the totem pole to reach the one who can truly make you feel as whole and complete as you are; as you were made to be. There is no Original Sin with Gnosticism. You are whole and complete as you are. (And the whole Original Sin debate is actually turned on it's head in the Gnostic fora, but that's another blog post for another time and day.)

Here's a simplified totem pole in a Gnostic's eyes:

1) Pleroma/The All/The Good God
2) The Judeo-Christian Yahweh, the demiurge
3) You

If you are praying fervently to find inner peace, to help pay for your broken down car, or to help you deal with your a****** of a boss. You need to go to the highest source; the highest power. Yahweh is the middle man. When you call your bank with an outrageous problem and the person you immediately talk to isn't helpful, what do you do? You demand to speak to their supervisor. You have a problem and it's not getting solved. You don't want to waste your time with someone who can't help. Same thing here. Talk to Yahweh's supervisor. He doesn't like to acknowledge this supervisor. As a matter of fact, He
despises him. Remember, "I am a jealous god. Thou shalt have no other god before me." So although Yahweh hates conceding that He does indeed have a supervisor, He can't stop you from speaking to Pleroma.

As a matter of fact, after you do talk to Pleroma the Judeo-Christian God does this little fake cough thing saying, "Ahem.. Yeah. Whatever" desperately trying to get you to dismiss the experience. This is the wool which has been pulled over your eyes for so long. There is a difference between the two. The Child doesn't want to acknowledge the Father while the Father calmly embraces the Son because he knows that humans will naturally gravitate toward his Child's religions first. There is too much physical ceremony attached to His religions. Human beings crave ceremony. Pleroma knows this. He has accepted it. Doesn't mean that he's not going to keep trying to reach out to you, though. He wants to embrace you fully, not at arms length.

You have freedom of choice.

Yahweh shackles you to the idea that Heaven and Hell and Earth is all that there is. Your place is below Him. Not beside Him in love. And certainly not as an equal, capable of understanding the mysteries of the universe.

The All wants you to lift yourself up to sit not beside him in love. No. More than that. With your arms around him. Hugging him as tightly as you can. And at the same time he will be giving you all the love, compassion, and confidence you could possibly need. He wants you to find the answers through your own intuition because that was the gift he was able to pass down to you through his child(Yahweh). You are, in essence, the grandchild of Pleroma.

Accessing that intuition, that cord which connects you(bypassing Yahweh!) to the All is what lay gnosis is all about. It's not voodoo or witchcraft. It's accessing your "Seventh Sense" and higher intelligence; your intuition.

Steve, from the TrueBlueHealer site dug up the most perfect quotes from ancient gnostics. Here are three.

Socrates, "You have often heard me talk of a divine oracle or Guide that comes to me. It is a kind of voice that I first heard in childhood. It always tells me what not to do but never commands me to do anything. (theme of freewill and companionship from a second internal intelligence)

Plato talked about a second Internal intelligence dwelling within- "Someone who has used his life for learning true wisdom and exercised his higher nature if he finds the truth he cannot fail to attain immortality as completely as human nature allows because he has always nurtured his Divine essence in himself. His Guardian Genius. He is the happiest of people."

Pythagoras talks about a second intelligence in everyone- "Father Zeus, free them from their great suffering and show everyone of them the Genius who is their guide."

The age-old concept of an internal guidance system survives today through rediscovering lay gnosis. Because lay gnosis is exactly the same type of diagnostic and healing techniques used by laying-on-of-hands-healers! The Eastern schools taught that the 'chakras were out of balance.' If you have explored the chakras or life energy then you're already halfway to lay gnosis.

I had never studied life energy before diving right into lay gnosis so the shock to my senses was overwhelming. Made me positively giddy. I felt like laughing and crying at the same time.

I'll admit, it seems hokey. It seems like a ridiculous waste of time when you first watch the video. (Sorry for the blunt honesty, Steve.) Initially, it looked like a hoax. But something was niggling in the back of my brain forcing me to pay attention to it. I watched it at least three times before I sighed and said to myself, "what the hell. I have a few minutes to kill. It certainly won't be the stupidest thing I've ever done."

Here's the link to the video again.

But when my hands started tingling and I felt the repelling magnet-like sensation creeping up my arms into my shoulders and neck then down my back, I just sat in front of my computer in shock. I'd never felt such a bizarre sensation. I had hot/cold chills when it was over and my teeth were chattering.

Two nights later I started having near delusional dreams. Made no sense whatsoever. Five or six a night. Woke up feeling like hell because they were so jumbled and I couldn't make heads or tails of them. Then the serenading started. In the SHOWER. No, I don't sing in the shower. It was Pleroma. He was singing to me in my head. Everything from Matchbox Twenty to oddball ballads I'd forgotten about that I loved as a teenager. The reoccurring theme here was in the lyrics: love. I've missed you. Hold me. Let me hold you.

It's like being in love. It's more than being in love. It's knowing just how much you are loved.

When two human beings love one another it's a complete mystery as to what is in the other person's heart. Their intentions can only be taken at face value. You're really going on faith that the other person feels as strongly as you do when the words tumble from your lips. Honestly, besides the things people do for one another or say to one another... you really haven't a clue how to position the gauge on that Love Scale.

When you meet the All, this Big Love which you suddenly feel surpasses every feeling of love you've ever felt in your entire life! Bigger love than when you watched your child being born. Bigger love than when you got your first car, first kiss, found that missing relative you haven't seen in 25 years. It's all encompassing. You don't think this person loves you. You
FEEL it. You are in their mind and inside their very being. There are no mysteries being held from you. There are no intermediary priests, bishops, or popes to speak for you. There are layers of understanding waiting for you but they are always accessible. Pleroma says, "Let me show you!! I'm so excited to see you again! There's so much I want to show you I can't wait to get started!!" So yes, the 'honeymoon' phase can be a tumultuous love affair. Full of shower serenades, interrupted sleep, and warm hugs in the middle of the day when you think to yourself, "damn, I need a hug." And that hug is given. No questions asked. Nothing else is asked for and everything you need is given.

He'll make you laugh. He'll tell you jokes. Point out the most absurd details and then explain them to you in depth. And then you'll think, "TMI. Seriously. That's just gross." Pleroma has a universe-sized sense of humor. There is nothing better than a good joke or a good song on the radio that he'd love to share with you. Or help you remember. The Good God is big on helping your remember things from your past to re-analyze them in order to teach you something. Sometimes it's simply to show you how much you've changed for the better and to give you a pat on the back. So let him. You deserve it.

He'll soothe your anger. Allow you rest when you need it. Calm those frazzled nerves. Tune in to that connection you share and it's like sipping a pina colada on a beach. It will revive you, refresh you, and center your focus.

He'll also open metaphysical doors when they've previously been slammed in your face. Perfect example: dealing with a chronic illness and pain. I have a fairly painful illness which demanded an entire lifestyle change from food and skin/haircare products down to what medications I take. I cannot do yoga anymore. It has turned my life upside down and erased all the hard work I've done for myself over the past twelve years. Metaphysically speaking, I felt as though I'd become a useless lump of skin. All I did was concentrate on my pain and suffering. My latest epiphany occurred when I was dozing, right on the very edge of sleep. I heard, "You do not have a self" very clearly in my ear.

To anyone except a gnostic this is heresy. What do you mean I don't have a self? Does this mean I don't have a soul? That's an outrage!!!

Turning this phrase over in my mind for a day or so made me feel it's truth. It's simplicity. It's boldness. And it was from the one who loves me the most.

To not have a self is to acknowledge your connection with the true divine; your place in his arms instead of meekly at His side(Yahweh). Because of your connection with Pleroma you do NOT have a self. You are an extension of him. He, in fact, experiences your life through your eyes and body. Yes, you make your own choices. You have a separate consciousness from Pleroma. But your "self" is tied into his divine self because of the fact you are an extension of his being, the very fabric which makes up Pleroma. You are his granchild. You are part of him but separate. You complete him. Without you he would be missing a part of himself. He doesn't want that. He wants to love you as fully as he can; to show you all the wonders you are missing out on in this life. He's like a child in a playground beckoning you closer to come play with him so you can enjoy what wonders exist in life. Will you walk away?

You are everything and everyone. That is what it means to be selfless. This makes it easier to feel true empathy for a fellow human being or creature we inhabit this earth with. And by default, easier to sympathize with the physical situation I found myself living day in and day out. If I don't have a self then that means everyone is sharing my pain in one way or another. They may not know it on a conscious level but they are. And so my new goal was to bring joy to my life and therefore to others. If I enrich myself I am helping humanity grow.

As Steve says, 'Welcome Home, Godlings!'

In parting, I'd like to offer the Prayer of the Messenger Paul, the very first text of Nag Hammadi Codex I.

Grant me your mercy.
My redeemer, redeem me,
for I am yours.
I came from you.
You are my mind:
give me birth.
You are my treasure:
open for me.
You are my fullness:
accept me.
You are my rest:
give me unlimited perfection.

I pray to you,
you who exist and preexisted,
in the name exalted above every name,
through Jesus the anointed,
lord of lords,
king of the eternal realms.
Give me your gifts, with no regret,
through the human child,
the spirit,
the advocate of truth.
Give me authority, I beg of you,
give healing for my body, as I beg of you,
through the preacher of the gospel,
and redeem my enlightened soul forever, and my spirit,
and disclose to my mind the firstborn of the fullness of grace.

Grant what eyes of angels have not seen,
what ears of rulers have not heard,
and what has not arisen in the hearts of people,
who become angelic,
and after the image of the animate god(demiurge)
when it was formed in the beginning.
I have the faith of hope.
And bestow upon me
your beloved, chosen, blessed majesty,
you who are the firstborn, the first-conceived,
and the wonderful mystery of your house.
for yours is the power and the glory and the praise and the greatness,
forever and ever.


Chadly said...

Personally, I always understood Pleroma to be more the Gnostic version of "Heaven". When I speak of the True God, I refer to "it" more as "First Thought" or "The All", maybe even "Mother/Father", etc.

I agree much with your early statements about dogmatic religion's prayers basically not reaching. Just curious though, what are your views of the more "progressive" religions/denominations, such as the more liberal Episcopals or the United Church of Christ? Those are the two most liberal I can think of, other than Unitarian-Universalism.

About to watch the video now. So far it seems an interesting concept. It does seem similar to me to witchcraft and the spellwork I've done, and I personally speculate that witchcraft(at least, as practiced by those of us who consider ourselves Gnostic Witches and Gnostic Druids) taps into the same energy/source, both internally and externally.

Chadly said...

Addendum: I just watched the video, and I find it very fascinating. It actually does kind of remind me of what I know of Reiki. It also reminds me of a couple of practices I used to do when I first started down the metaphysical path, when I considered myself a Christian Witch, that I haven't done in awhile and may try to resume.

The first was a grounding technique to rid yourself of negative energy built up throughout the day. You ground yourself and visualize energy black in color(or whatever color you associate with the negative). Then, using your hands, you kind of "pick off" that energy and throw it out into the cosmos, replacing it gradually into a white energy field, or whatever color you most associate with "positive".

The second was a visualization technique to help in focus of energy during spells, where you make sort of an "energy ball" in between your hands, visualizing it as varying strengths and sizes as you develop your mental skills.

The reason this reminded me of those, is because of the interesting fact of simply how I learn. In learning new skills, I'm a visual learner, learning by copying others, which is why the language I learned quickest outside of English, was American Sign Language. In learning music, I learn by ear, hearing it and mimicking. But in both of these exercises previously mentioned, I would have a difficult time visualizing the energy and the colors, and find myself noticing the *feeling*,such as noticing tingling in my hands during the energy ball visualizations. In retrospect, maybe that's one of the reasons most of my spells tend to be mentally/emotionally focused and attempting to draw things to me(such as to improve my attitude or draw opportunities to me), rather than explicitly trying to change the external, such as making it rain.

Perhaps that's why I eventually grew lax in these exercises - I didn't think I was "doing it right" because what I expected to 'see', wasn't what happened. Perhaps now that I'm becoming more stable in my spiritual path, I'll revisit them.

Angel said...

I replied here: