By Peter M Burfeind
Gnostic the USA is a interpreting of present American tradition, politics, and non secular existence in accordance with the traditional circulation often called Gnosticism. In it, Peter M Burfeind builds off the rules of Hans Jonas, Denis de Rougement, Norman Cohn, William Voegelin, Carl Jung, and Harold Bloom, every one of whom observed the consequences of Gnosticism in modern American (and Western) lifestyles. He explores the religious mechanisms happening at the back of every thing from transgenderism to so-called "contemporary worship," from the deconstructionist flow to the function pop tune and media have in our tradition, from innovative politics to the Emergent Church. really not easy is Burfeind's declare that either progressivism and Neo-evangelicalism -- probably at odds within the "culture wars" -- really percentage an analogous Gnostic roots. Burfeind's publication is a journey de strength via modern rock, pop, videos, tv, politics, and faith exhibiting what number of the values using those cultural parts are proficient through the traditional esoteric teachings of Gnosticism. Burfeind marshals a ton of unusual proof to make his case, taking us via old and Medieval background, in the course of the Enlightenment and Romantic sessions, to this present day. these prepared to grapple with the philosophical and religious positions of the fathers of latest American lifestyles can be rewarded. Gnostic the USA is a needs to learn if you feel a brand new "spiritual yet no longer non secular" faith has arisen in the USA, yet who cannot positioned their finger on what precisely this faith is. Burfeind commits the sacrilege of defining a faith that says to be "beyond" definition. extra importantly, he poses the query, if the non secular developments of latest tradition are certainly a faith, what First modification safeguards stay in case you have not "evolved" with the rising new recognition, yet decide to stay caught in supposedly retrograde paradigms of thought?
About the Author
Peter Burfeind serves as pastor at Holy pass Lutheran Church and scholar Ministry on the college of Toledo. he's additionally a US military Chaplain and writer of kid's academic fabrics (Pax Domini Press). He lives in Toledo, Ohio together with his spouse Jillian and 4 young children.
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Gnostic the US is a analyzing of present American tradition, politics, and non secular existence in keeping with the traditional circulate referred to as Gnosticism. In it, Peter M Burfeind builds off the rules of Hans Jonas, Denis de Rougement, Norman Cohn, William Voegelin, Carl Jung, and Harold Bloom, each one of whom observed the results of Gnosticism in modern American (and Western) lifestyles.
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Additional info for Gnostic America: A Reading of Contemporary American Culture & Religion According to Christianity’s Oldest Heresy
Important among the influential mystery cults is Orphism, which laid the foundation for the association of love, music, and Gnosticism. Also important in this context is Hermeticism, an ancient variant of Gnosticism which derived more this-worldly implications of Gnostic teachings. Behind these imported concepts is the core Gnostic impulse: we are strangers in a physical world governed by oppressive forces and laws. Our bodies are bound by laws that have nothing to do with true human striving. Salvation occurs when I awaken to my true origins and begin the journey up and out of this cosmic oppression tyrannized by Yaltabaoth and his archons.
The second part explores Gnosticism in culture. It begins with the existentialist understanding of the Self and goes on to the role media and music play in the development of Self. Important in this chapter is the "practical Gnostic" view of Renaissance Hermeticism, which is to say, how magic manipulates our fantasy lives in the creation of Self. The third part tackles Gnostic politics, finding common themes in the totalitarian movements of the modern era. The central thesis driving this part is that a specific theological outlook of the Middle Ages – millenarian, Anabaptist, Pietist, and Puritan – has laid the foundation for modern progressive politics.
The Gnostic is ever in rebellion against nature and, more to the philosophical point, natural forms. Such naturally-arising concepts as gender, national boundaries, the cold hard realities of economics, cultural institutions like family and church (especially its rituals), marriage, even language, are deceptive impositions, says the Gnostic, of a foreign God upon what should be the authentic Self liberated from all impositions of form, freed to transcend them altogether. The Judeo-Christian orientation centers on created forms.