A review of Elaine Pagel’s book. Beyond Belief, published in by Random House, is a sort of sequel to The Secret Gospels, in that it incorporates the new. Frank Kermode reviews book Beyond Belief: The Secret Gospel of Thomas by Elaine Pagels; drawing (M). Beyond Belief has ratings and reviews. Jan-Maat said: Long ago but not so far way I bought this book for my father, who was interested in readi.

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Apparently these works which oppose orthodox Christianity were hid there to preserve them from being destroyed. May 04, Pages Buy. I’m very grateful this book exists. On the one hand there were those who accepted what they were taught, on the other those who took this as a starting point to seek for themselves after truth. I recommend keeping as far away from this book as possible if one wants to study early Christian history.

John’s emphasis is on communing to God through Jesus Christ. Pagels remains a champion for truth and an asset to people who want to know it, painting a more complete picture of Jesus and the evolution of Christianity. John and Thomas God’s word or human words? Traditions embodied in Judaism and Christianity can powerfully affect us in heart, mind, and spirit, inspire visions of a new society based on practicing justice and love, even heal and transform us.

She admires the mystical generalities of the gnostics and is temperamentally allergic to the violent certainties of the winning side in Catholic Christianity.

Pagels keeps things moving, keeps it very accessible. I enjoyed her personal story and how she believes that there is more than one way to discover God, but again this book is supposed to be beliff the Gospel of Thomas or so While I enjoyed “Beyond Belief”, both the content and Dr.

As a young researcher at Barnard College, she changed forever the historical landscape of the Christian r Elaine Pagels is a preeminent figure in the theological community whose scholarship has earned her international respect.

Jun 10, David Withun rated it it was ok Shelves: Jesus’ eyes at this flashed with anger and those bully boys fell dead. The rest of the book seems little more than a pale attempt to justify her own choice.

Pagels’ basic conception is of a dynamic, human, environment, and the various oddities of the Gospel attributed to John lend themselves to supporting that view – in other words John’s Gospel is really not much like the three synoptic Gospels which together with John form the Orthodox canon of the New Testament view spoiler [ although Pagels also points out that the way we read the Gospel of John is enshrined in translation practice and even in contemporary Greek editions – eg the capitalisation of logos which would not have been originally present hide spoiler ].


More By and About This Author. I find her writing to be interesting, although with sheer amount of dates and names, it can be a bit dry. How might Christianity be different today if Thomas had been included in the New Testament?

Beyond Belief by Elaine Pagels

The result is inspirational. The astonishing discovery of the Gospel of Thomas, along with more than fifty other early Christian texts unknown since antiquity, offers startling clues. This does not provide the Gospel of Thomas, but at least some of the text is available online, and also in the book covering the 52 text discovered in Egypt inThe Nag Hammadi Scriptures.

Feb 09, Minutes. It’s very smoothly and interestingly written–engaging, really–and contains a great deal of interesting information on the foundations of Christianity and, especially, how early church leaders strove to overpower one another and promote their own view of Jesus.

Elakne frames the story of the quashing of spiritual interpretations of the meaning of the ministry of Jesus view spoiler [I am picking my words with as much care as I can after a mere couple of glasses of an indifferent white wine, I know what Rabelais would advise me to do in this case hide spoiler ] in favour of an Orthodox and Catholic church by the time of Beliec with her experience as a mother living through the death of a son, attending church first in crisis, later with her daughter for a Christmas service.

Beyond Belief: The Secret Gospel of Thomas – Elaine H. Pagels – Google Books

Or was he God himself, for a time disguised in the flesh of the man from Nazareth, but now returned to his pre-existent state as the Eternal Word, the Second Person of the Holy Trinity? As always, the most ruthless win. Pagels doesn’t give any strong proof for us to accept the Gospel of Thomas and also other so-called secret works. However, ultimately the emperor Constantine who had been a Christian convert prevailed and we have what constitutes orthodoxy today. In beyknd of the Nag Hammadi texts, suppressed by the Church in A.


What the farmer found

Much of the book is history. Hardcover1stpages.

Elaine Pagels, professor of religion at Princeton University, has made the translation and interpretation of these texts her life’s work. About Beyond Belief In Beyond Beliefrenowned religion scholar Elaine Pagels continues her groundbreaking examination of the earliest Christian texts, arguing for an ongoing assessment of faith and a questioning of religious orthodoxy. A nice study of a Gospel not found in the Bible. Recognize that this is one viewpoint and interpretation of early church history.

I don’t believe like Pagels does that John was written perhaps to refute the more heretic book of Thomas. While it’s subtitle is the Secret Gospel of Thomas and the text of the complete Gospel of Thomas is printed in the back, we found it to be more of a elaie of the development of the early Christian Church. Discover what to read next. Thomas, one of the texts discovered at Nag Hammadi, is pagelss collection of sayings of Jesus, with no narrative framework.

During my studies at Union Theological Beyknd in New York I became acquainted with Elaine Pagels, initially on a social level as one of my girlfriend’s favorite teachers at Barnard College, then as my own teacher for a course entitled “Creation Myths in Genesis” at Union. Finally, after so many centuries, the heretics are having their say. This is the book that turned me on to Pagels’ scholarship, and I’ve felt a distant kinship ever since.

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Beyond Belief Reader’s Guide

The author’s personal beliefs are, of course, eliane and she is welcome to them Scholars have dated Thomas to the same time frame as John, the latest youngest of the four Gospels.

Pagels is a recognized scholar of religion, and the author of The Gnostic Gospels, among others. Account Options Sign in.