techgnosis

the gnostic gospels - reading notes

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the gnostic gospels - reading notes

01/01/2009

extracts :

Elaine Pagels, The Gnostic Gospels

( from pages xviii - xxi - Introduction )

By the time of the Emperor Constantine's conversion, when Christianity became an officially approved religion in the fourth century, Christian bishops, previously victimized by the police, now commanded them. Possession of books denounced as heretical was made a criminal offense. Copies of such books were burned and destroyed. But in Upper Egypt, someone, possibly a monk from a 19 nearby monastery of St. Pachomius, took the banned books and hid them from destruction‚Äö in the jar where they remained buried for almost 1,600 years.

Technocalyps - transhumansism 3 part documentary

Technocalyps is a three-part documentary by Frank Theys on the idea of transhumanism

the documentary can be downloaded at greylodge.org, and they describe the parts as :

[quote]
Part 1: Transhuman
Part 1 gives an overview of recent technological developments (biogenetics, artificial intelligence, robotics, implants, nanotechnology,…) and prognoses made by leading scientists about the impact of these developments in the near future.

Part 2: Preparing for the Singularity
In this part advocates and opponents of a transhuman future are weighed against each other; prognoses are done when we can expect the transhuman revolution and how people are preparing for it already now.

Part 3: The Metaphysics of Technology

explorative research links

deoxy readings and irc chats

This weekend I've been trying to catch up on some of the MLA courses. the PKD course has finished. Rushkoff's Technologies of Persuasion finishes this weekend. I've enrolled in another self-study class called Tales of the Tribe - by Robert Anton Wilson (RAW) who has since passed away.

Reality Sandwich

Reality Sandwich is a web magazine for this time of intense transformation. Their subjects run the gamut from sustainability to shamanism, alternate realities to alternative energy, remixing media to re-imagining community, holistic healing techniques to the promise and perils of new technologies. They hope to spark debate and engagement by offering a forum for voices ranging from the ecologically pragmatic to the wildly visionary (which, to our delight, sometimes turn out to be the one and the same). Counteracting the doom-and-gloom of the daily news, Reality Sandwich is a platform for voices conveying a different vision of the transformations we face. Their goal is to inspire psychic evolution and a kind of earth alchemy.

-- info adapted from the reality sandwich about page

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The Gnosis Archive

The Gnosis Archive offers a vast collection of primary texts and resources relating to Gnosticism and the Gnostic Tradition, both ancient and modern. There is also information on the Nag Hammadi Scrolls / Scriptures hosted on this site.

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scientists find the dawn of creativity date is possibly earlier than originally thought

I came across a couple of interesting articles in the UK Telegraph paper today - about the history of art and discovery of 11000 year old paintings that seem to be painted in a modern geometric style.

'Oldest' wall painting looks like modern art
"French archaeologists have discovered an 11,000-year-old work of art in northern Syria which is the oldest known wall painting, even though it looks like a work by a modernist.

The two square-metre painting, in red, black and white, was found at the Neolithic settlement of Djade al-Mughara on the Euphrates, northeast of the city of Aleppo.

"It looks like a modernist painting," said Eric Coqueugniot, the team leader. "Some of those who saw it have likened it to work by (Paul) Klee. Through carbon dating we established it is from around 9,000 BC."

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The dating makes the designs at least 1500 years older than wall paintings at Çatalhöyük, the famous 9500-year-old Turkish village, among one of the first towns. Cave art dates back much further but it was not until the so-called Neolithic Revolution that people began marking up human-made surfaces.

Scientists are fascinated by the birth of art because it marked a decisive point in our story, when man took a critical step beyond the limitations of his hairy ancestors and began to use symbols. The modern mind was born."

related articles :

The birth of our modern minds ...

Two pieces of ochre engraved with geometrical patterns more than 70,000 years ago, were recently found at Blombos Cave, 180 miles east of Cape Town. If the current dogma is accepted, this means people were able to think abstractly and behave as modern humans much earlier than previously thought.

Lord Renfrew would argue that art, like genetics, does not tell the whole story of our origins. For him, the real revolution occurred 10,000 years ago with the first permanent villages. That is when the effects of new software kicked in, allowing our ancestors to work together in a more settled way. That is when plants and animals were domesticated and agriculture born.

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Lord Renfrew puts his faith in "cognitive archaeology". This is not "thinking prehistoric thoughts" but has a more modest aim of revealing how ancient minds worked by studying what they did - how they counted, made flint tools or used measures.

Intriguingly, he argues, in his book Figuring it Out, that contemporary art also provides insights into how proto-societies grappled with the material world.

Cave find dates dawn of creativity

TWO pieces of ochre - a form of iron ore - engraved with geometrical patterns more than 70,000 years ago reveal that people were able to think abstractly and behave as modern humans much earlier than previously thought.

The discovery in a South African cave suggests that humans have created art for twice as long as suggested by previous discoveries, notably by cave paintings from France that have been dated to less than 35,000 years ago.

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While genetic and fossil evidence suggests that humans were anatomically modern in Africa before 100,000 years ago, scholars are not yet able to agree on whether human behaviour and physique developed in tandem.

Some believe that modern behaviour arose relatively late and rapidly, 40,000 to 50,000 years ago, while others believe that it evolved earlier and more gradually.

The diversity of views reflects the lack of agreement among scientists on what behaviour best defines the difference between modern humans and their earlier ancestors.

But there is a general consensus that a clear marker of modern behaviour are the cognitive abilities that would be used, for example, to create abstract or depictional images.

"Archaeological evidence of abstract or depictional images indicates modern behaviour," Prof Henshilwood said. "The Blombos Cave engravings are intentional images."

Stone Age masterpieces shed new light on the origins of art

EUROPE'S oldest cave paintings - a menagerie of lions, rhinos, bears and panthers drawn at least 30,000 years ago - are so sophisticated that they may force scientists to think again about the origins of art.

New radiocarbon datings of the Chauvet cavern paintings in Ardeche, France, have confirmed that their Stone Age creators were as skilled as painters 15,000 years later.

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"Prehistorians, who have traditionally interpreted the evolution of prehistoric art as a steady progression from simple to more complex representations, may have to reconsider existing theories of the origins of art."

The caves have challenged the conventional theory of the evolution of art which states that it had crude beginnings in the Aurignacian period followed by gradual progress over thousands of years.

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mondo 2000

Finding my old bookmark files has made me nostalgic for the early computing days when everything was new and exciting and full of possibilities. One of my favourite magazines back in the early 90s was Mondo 2000. It was hard to get - only a few places in Brisbane stocked it, actually only two that I recall and even then it was occasional. By the time I got round to subscribing to the magazine it had finished being published and I lost my subscription renewal to the cause so to speak. At the time, it was cutting edge and the full gloss images and interviews with leading thinkers made it a great read. R.U. Sirius who was the editor of the mag has a podcast these days and can be found around mondoglobo.net. Here's a collection of links to mondo 2000 stuff:

mondo articles from the well (link updated : original link broken 25/09/2008 : http://www.well.com:70/1/Publications/MONDO )

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freeNRG : notes from the edge of the dance floor

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freeNRG : notes from the edge of the dance floor - AliaK

AliaK spoke with Graham St John regarding his new book about Australian electronic music community, travelling sound systems and DiY party culture.

GRAHAM ST JOHN : EDITOR AND COMPILER OF "freeNRG : notes from the edge of the dance floor" @ FRIGID (HOPETOUN HOTEL, SYDNEY)
SUNDAY 17 MARCH

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