I have a bit of information on her already, however, I'd really like to know if anyone else has information discribing Sophia and her relation to God.
Here is what I have on her so far- source of information varies.
Sophia is the feminine aspect of God, and ‘bride of Christ’. She is considered to have fallen from Grace, reasons unknown. However her fall either created or helped create the material world. She is also said to be the creator of the universe.
Sophia is the feminine divinity of Gnosticism. She has many names and aspects, including being associated or identified with the Holy Ghost. According to her various capacities, she is also the Universal Mother, Mother of the Living, Power on High, She of the Left hand- which is the opposite of Christ, he being of the right Hand. Other names include the Luxurious One, the Womb, the Virgin, the Wife of Male, the Revealer of Perfect Mysteries, the Saint Columba of Spirits, The heavenly Mother, the Wandering One, or Elena (the moon/Selene). She is seen as the female aspect of Logos/Logic
Inside all of man kind is the ‘divine spark of god’- it is contained or imprisoned in the body. The purpose of life is to enable the ‘Divine Spark’ to be released from its imprisonment in matter (physical form) and reunite/return to God (whom is considered the source of the Divine Light.) This belief is mostly associated with Gnosticism and Western Mystical Traditions (Kabbalah and Sufism)
Pistis Sophia states Christ was sent from the Godhead to bring Sophia back into her full pleroma (total divine powers). The point of Sophia coming into her full divine power again, was to aid humanity into recovering lost knowledge of the divine origins of humanity- this would bring back the unity between humanity and the Pleroma. Sophia cant create anything balanced without her male counterpart.
Each Aeon is an aspect of God- Sophia is the feminine aspect of God, where as Jesus is the masculine aspect. Together they are Wisdom. However, Sophia was separated from the Pleroma, forming the demiurge. The Demiurge is the deity responsible for the creation of the physical universe. Sophia is depicted as the mother of the Demiurge.
In the Nag Hammadi (a town in central Egypt, established by Mahmoud Basha Hammadi, a member of a large Egyptian family in Sohang), Sophia is the lowest aeon. She forms a unity with Christ, becoming conjoined with him (believed to be the Holy Spirit). Sophia is the creator of the material universe and its Gods (Yaldabaoth, Sameal, and Demiurge). In the “On the Origins of the World” she is depicted as the destroyer of both the material world and its God(s) and all his heavens.
"She [Sophia] will cast them down into the abyss. They [the archons] will be obliterated because of their wickedness. For they will come to be like volcanoes and consume one another until they perish at the hand of the prime parent. When he has destroyed them, he will turn against himself and destroy himself until he ceases to exist. And their heavens will fall one upon the next and their forces will be consumed by fire. Their eternal realms, too, will be overturned. And his heaven will fall and break in two. His [...] will fall down upon the [...] support them; they will fall into the abyss, and the abyss will be overturned. The light will [...] the darkness and obliterate it: it will be like something that never was."‘On the Origins of the World’ found in the Nag Hammadi library, Codex II, following the ‘Reality of the Rules’.
In some beliefs, Sophia is seen as the hero who sent the Serpent into the Garden of Eden to guide/influence mankind towards enlightenment.
In Hebrew, Sophia ‘Wisdom of God” is Chokhmah.
Your post is interesting. I never though about Sophia being assoicated with Chokhmah. I always thought Sophia was be assoicated with Binah on the Tree of Life.
I had never heard of Sophia till I went snooping around for the devious ladies of the bible. Then my search moved onto Female angels and Sophia came up. I believe Sophia is mostly kept in the gnostic belief?
I believe so. I went through an Gnostic stint for a while. Pretty much all the info you posted about Sophia is true. I really have not found a lot of information on associating Gnosticism with the Tree of Life. Though I have read in passing that Cabala and Gnosticism are similar paths being that they both seek the Divine and that was about it. When I had seen that in your post Sophia was associated with Chokhmah I thought it very different. Since Sophia is identified in many respects with the Holy Ghost and in Christian Cabala the Holy Ghost was associated with Binah. Christ in Christianity would be associated with Chokhmah. Though there was always a problems with Christian Cabala because Christians see God as only three emanations (Father, Son, Holy Ghost) and Cabala is ten emanations. I did some research on it a while ago but didn't come up with much.
I cant seem to find her else were either.
I'd also like to see what other entities would be associated with Sophia that are female, rather than male. Thanks for your help!
Read G.R.S. Mead, Pistis Sophia.
I've seen this but I haven't read it yet. Seems like a good read.
'Say unto wisdom, 'Thou art my sister', and call understanding thy kinswoman.'
I had always understood her to be an emanation of the Divine rather than the Female Divine itself, which Daniel Matt links to the phrase 'Shekhinah' (from the Hebrew 'dwelling place').
Sophia was pregnant when she fell. Her miscarriage, to the Gnostics, was the process by which the Archons who oversee the mundane universe were haemorraged across the heavens.
So, in other words, it is the malformed abortions of wisdom that separate those born in this sphere from the divine. The descent of the Wisdom of God down the Tree of Life corrupted what could have been a second heaven which is, if we let A = B and so on, the story of Genesis.
Anyway, this poem sort of explains my take on it better:
Christmas 2005: On the Occasion Of The UCL English Department Xmas Party
In The Name of Ialbadoath, Greatest Lord
Forbidden name and chiefest bureaucrat
Prince of file clerks, corruptor of the Data
Head librarian of the seven howling brothers
Written on all pages in all places in all ages
Each library and locus of the written
Dark spirit of confusion and unbidden
Disseminator and first born of that dark realm and all is due
To that which is obscured by these his agents.
Nameless, shifting sons of great Sofia
All of wisdom’s lost abortions hear my tears,
Prime archon of that first, worst screaming darkness
Demiurge of all of his creation,
He! Alone the lion headed eater of all reason
His! Alone the endless shelves, the squirming swarms of figures
His! The derelict hearts of all the lost in remote spaces
His! The coterie of landed wellspoke knowledge eaters.
I invoke your sondaughters to this face
Let them come through fire
Let them come through flickering sockets and weeping light fixtures
Let them spread themselves by means of affordable broadband for all
Let them be carried to this place, riding the pages of old books
Let their swollen faces be caught in flickering palpitation CCTV cameras throughout
Let the seven hermaphroditic walkers in the void all phone their friends for lifts
Even by illegal rapist minicab if necessary
And let the lecherous rapist minicab drivers
Discover many headed namelessness beneath their miniskirts
Let theirs be the poster campaigns, broken road safety devices and defaced town name signs that say filthy things instead of ‘Please Drive Safely’
Let them not drive safely in their coming
Let them have the Christmas number one
I want to see Eloaios, second born, whose cry to his father was ‘EL’
Eloaios the mundane whose soul is grey
Scowl out from the cover of magzines!
And show us round his hovel (also grey)
Give Iaoth, the paranoid lord of mind loss his own series,
Unbroadcastable, but seen by everybody, and downloaded from BitTorrent three weeks before release anyway
Becase fear Always! Leaks! Out!
Let the son of the demiurge use his show to spread unlikely lies
About where your money goes (chiefly surveillance and robot armies)
About what is really going on (chiefly secret warfare with Venus)
And going wrong (chiefly that they know, and to get out now)
And close on a song by his brother Astaphaios the Wicked
And his band of elegant drug addicts
Whose music drives men to unconscionable violence and depravity
Ripping open all the secret places of the mind
Oh, they will be carried into the heart of the great beast itself
Palace of ignorance
On IPods, on Pirate DVDs, written on the minds and on the ventricles of the young
In foot high screaming letters they will say,
‘Appoint Maxwell’s Demon head of the Royal Society,
Guild of Printers and the CBI slimealltaneously,
Watch half of everything explode, and the other half freeze
That done, choose Iao, bisexual lord of fire and ice
To head a Commons select committee
To investigate the feasibility
Of nuclear power installed not in plants, institutes or living rooms
But in our very minds, in our craniums
Convert each head into a fission reactor
Atom smash egos and squirt decaying radioactive matter
Through lead lined noses, scarred with cocaine use, into
Gold fibre tissues
That melt and leak in the light of the Sun.
Sabaoth, Martian death lord and supreme deity of the mercenary,
Wretched tramp king
Unite all your wandering legions in the metropolis this night
All Cider drinkers
Homeless free thinkers
Pathetic, Prophets, Fanatics and Clowns
And bring the down,
And raise them up,
And ask this of
Adoni, source of first misunderstandings, lord of divided syllables and [brbrbr]
Have him edit the Sunday Times full colour supplement,
Featuring full coverage and gossip of tonight’s proceedings.
Up to and including the rumour that transvestite Sablataios,
Saturn’s drag queen and the gadfly of the dancefloor
Has been seen in full embrace with members of this faculty,
Lewdly revealing herself ‘til all hours of the day and night,
Well past the point of possible or plausible
Recovery of his dignity!’
In the name
Prime archon of
All that is Dark
The prince, the Demiurge of Chaos and
What you gotta do is slice the top part of the tree off at the Abyss.
Inaccessible Divine =
Amongst so many other resources, I suggest also this: http://www.gnosis.org/naghamm/thunder.html
Always a fascinating inspiration!
Gnosis.org has many gnostic resources to check out. Sophia is a central figure/idea to all gnostic groups.
Im not sure I see where Sophia was pregnant? Could you please clarify this.
I remember reading about that. Which makes sense, though I never clearly understood how the seven remaining sephirot were attributed.
Ok, let me try and get this right. It's been a while, forgive errors of fact, though I'm kind of proud of the heresies:
When Keter divided itself it separated into two versions of reality, both of which contained the potential for perfection.
Sophia, depending on your belief system was cast/sent down as Lucifer/Christ or dragged down by man's impetuousness as the Fruit from the tree.
The first therefore became the last, whilst retaining a sympathy with her twin.
On her way, the world she was to become and all the life in her (that she was pregnant with - Chokhmah, potential for growth - the word itself is full of organisms) ... tumbed out of her, producing the Demiurge, Ialdabaoth of the lion head.
The layers of reality that were then produced are named: Eloiaos, Iaoth, Astaphaios, Iao, Sabaoth, Sablataios (who is, potentially, Sophia herself though this bit always makes my head hurt). -.
Now here's the fun bit:
revltAMK asks how you reconcile the absence of the other seven sephiroth with the Christian system. Simple tings! Cos those Seven brothers and sisters make up the other spheres. My poem was an attempt to map these Seven onto the Seven remaining spheres of the post abyss tree.
Unfortunately in the Gnostic system these elements are intended to blind you to the Divine Truth of the trinity, and act as literal obstacles, dazzling the believer and preventing him finding God. This translates in the modern church as an intense mistrust of mysticism that even atheists share today. (the early church effectively exterminated the Gnostics, but their ideas are sort of bigger than them if you see what I mean)
Bear in mind that this means the Gnostics essentially hate the tangible, and that some of them regard Christ as something to be overcome, defeated. The mandaeans in particular see no distinction between Christ and Lucifer, as Christ is a deceiver who tells you to be passive when you should be fighting the system of the tree itself. Poor Gnostics...
All of which should just astonish you in its demonstration of how open to interpretation Kabbalah is.
I really apperciate your insite there- thanks for the clarification! It makes much more sense.
I was watching the History Channel and they had a program on the Knights of Templar. I had no idea that a possible translation of Baphomet was 'Sophia'
Atbash Cipher For The Goddess Sophia
Dr. Hugh Schonfield, one of the scholars who worked on the Dead Sea Scrolls believed the Word Baphomet was applied with the Knowledge of the Atbash Cipher. The Atbash Cipher is a Hebrew code which substitutes the first letter of the alphabet for the last and the second letter for the second last and so on. When Baphomet is applied to this code, it generates the Greek word Sophia that is translated in English as "Wisdom." The Greek Goddess Sophia is brought to mind here.
Now is there any connection to Lilith, Sophia, Jesus, God, Lucifer, Eve and Adam? Does she in any way directly effect any of those people, or is Sophia possible another aspect of Lilith/Eve?
Many thanks for the very interesting discussion here. I got recommended a book that I have as yet not had time to read, but it looks like a good one.The recommendation of it to me came from a good source. It is called "The Fall of Sophia- a gnostic text on the redemption of universal consciousness". Wihin it there is a translation of Pistis Sophia direct from the Coptic.But it contains much more, relating the Pistis Sophia back to the the like of Jung,Swedenborg,the Kabbalah,and other teachings.
If anyone has read this I would be most interested in their opinion.
I am not sure if this goes in the right direction. I was wondering if σοφία, the Coptic Sophia Christi, is simply the personification of a force in nature, like the "word" in the Genesis, etc., despite the fact that it kind of reads as if the saviour was speaking about a woman.
The meaning of the Greek word is beyond any doubt. Grammatically, pistis sophia in Coptic is a direct genitive, best translated as "wisdom's faith". Both words are borrowed from the Greek language, they are not of Coptic/Egyptian origin. The terms occur in the Berlin Codex, later in the Nag Hammadi texts. Both texts are most likely Coptic translations of Greek originals, translated into German or French after, and from there in to English. This means you have basically three fall traps in there.
What is more important to me in those Nag Hammadi texts, besides the proof of Mary of Magdalene as Jesus' wife, are the similarities to texts derived from Egyptian texts, especially the Solomon Odes and the Psalms of Solomon. If I remember correctly, there are also passages of self begetting, something that always points to the first God, Atum, who created the world from his semen by masturbation in the city of Iunu (Heliopolis).
This all sounds suspiciously like the 'fall' of the daughter into Malkuth from which she will be raised to where...Daath, to restore the symetry of the original star. Somewhat like the submission and unclothing of Ishtar in the underworld to redeem Marduk.
Blavatsky has a good deal about Sophia in "Isis Unveiled" She connects Sophia to the story of genesis. Apparently Adam & Eve were created by a benighted Ilda-Baoth (whom she equates with Jehovah, if I remember correctly.) Sophia encounters them and feels sorry for them as IB keeps them dumbed down and enslaved to him. She employs her daughter Sopia-Acamoth to intervene and she appears as a serpent, lets the cat out of the bag about the tree of knowledge and the rest is history.
Or something like that.
Don't have the text in front of me right now so I can't vouch for all the details.. I am pretty sure it is in Vol II. The volumes are really well indexed if you can get your hands on them.