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Beyond Belief - The Secret Gospel of Thomas

Elaine Pagels

Special edition including the complete text of the Gospel of Thomas Elaine Pagels, one of the world's most important writers and thinkers on religion and history, and winner of the National Book Award for her groundbreaking work The Gnostic Gospels, now reflects on what matters most about spiritual and religious exploration in the twenty-first century. This bold new book explores how Christianity began by tracing its earliest texts, including the secret Gospel of Thomas, rediscovered in Egypt in 1945. When her infant son was diagnosed with fatal pulmonary hypertension, Elaine Pagels's spiritual and intellectual quest took on a new urgency, leading her to explore historical and archeological sources and to investigate what Jesus and his teachings meant to his followers before the invention of doctrine-and before the invention of Christianity as we know it. The astonishing discovery of the Gospel of Thomas, along with more than fifty other early Christian texts unknown since antiquity, offers startling clues. Pagels compares such sources as Thomas's gospel (which claims to give Jesus' secret teaching, and finds its closest affinities with kabbalah) with the canonic texts to show how Christian leaders chose to include some gospels and exclude others from the collection we have come to know as the New Testament. To stabilize the emerging Christian church in times of devastating persecution, the church fathers constructed the canon, creed, and hierarchy-and, in the process, suppressed many of its spiritual resources. Drawing on new scholarship-her own, and that of an international group of scholars-that has come to light since the publication in 1979 of The Gnostic Gospels, Pagels shows that what matters about Christianity involves much more than any one set of beliefs. 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. Provocative, beautifully written, and moving, B

Special edition including the complete text of the Gospel of Thomas Elaine Pagels, one of the world's most important writers and thinkers on religion and history, and winner of the National Book Award for her groundbreaking work The Gnostic Gospels, now reflects on what matters most about spiritual and religious exploration in the twenty-first century. This bold new book explores how Christianity began by tracing its earliest texts, including the secret Gospel of Thomas, rediscovered in Egypt in 1945. When her infant son was diagnosed with fatal pulmonary hypertension, Elaine Pagels's spiritual and intellectual quest took on a new urgency, leading her to explore historical and archeological sources and to investigate what Jesus and his teachings meant to his followers before the invention of doctrine-and before the invention of Christianity as we know it. The astonishing discovery of the Gospel of Thomas, along with more than fifty other early Christian texts unknown since antiquity, offers startling clues. Pagels compares such sources as Thomas's gospel (which claims to give Jesus' secret teaching, and finds its closest affinities with kabbalah) with the canonic texts to show how Christian leaders chose to include some gospels and exclude others from the collection we have come to know as the New Testament. To stabilize the emerging Christian church in times of devastating persecution, the church fathers constructed the canon, creed, and hierarchy-and, in the process, suppressed many of its spiritual resources. Drawing on new scholarship-her own, and that of an international group of scholars-that has come to light since the publication in 1979 of The Gnostic Gospels, Pagels shows that what matters about Christianity involves much more than any one set of beliefs. 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. Provocative, beautifully written, and moving, B
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Special edition including the complete text of the Gospel of Thomas Elaine Pagels, one of the world's most important writers and thinkers on religion and history, and winner of the National Book Award for her groundbreaking work The Gnostic Gospels, now reflects on what matters most about spiritual and religious exploration in the twenty-first century. This bold new book explores how Christianity began by tracing its earliest texts, including the secret Gospel of Thomas, rediscovered in Egypt in 1945. When her infant son was diagnosed with fatal pulmonary hypertension, Elaine Pagels's spiritual and intellectual quest took on a new urgency, leading her to explore historical and archeological sources and to investigate what Jesus and his teachings meant to his followers before the invention of doctrine-and before the invention of Christianity as we know it. The astonishing discovery of the Gospel of Thomas, along with more than fifty other early Christian texts unknown since antiquity, offers startling clues. Pagels compares such sources as Thomas's gospel (which claims to give Jesus' secret teaching, and finds its closest affinities with kabbalah) with the canonic texts to show how Christian leaders chose to include some gospels and exclude others from the collection we have come to know as the New Testament. To stabilize the emerging Christian church in times of devastating persecution, the church fathers constructed the canon, creed, and hierarchy-and, in the process, suppressed many of its spiritual resources. Drawing on new scholarship-her own, and that of an international group of scholars-that has come to light since the publication in 1979 of The Gnostic Gospels, Pagels shows that what matters about Christianity involves much more than any one set of beliefs. 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. Provocative, beautifully written, and moving, B

Language:

English

Narrators:

Jennifer Van Dyck

Length:

4h 54m


Chapters

Chapter 1
Chapter 1

07:08


Chapter 2
Chapter 2

06:35


Chapter 3
Chapter 3

06:50


Chapter 4
Chapter 4

07:34


Chapter 5
Chapter 5

06:36


Chapter 6
Chapter 6

07:01


Chapter 7
Chapter 7

06:26


Chapter 8
Chapter 8

06:20


Chapter 9
Chapter 9

06:24


Chapter 10
Chapter 10

07:24


Chapter 11
Chapter 11

06:00


Chapter 12
Chapter 12

07:00


Chapter 13
Chapter 13

07:16


Chapter 14
Chapter 14

06:39


Chapter 15
Chapter 15

06:44


Chapter 16
Chapter 16

06:33


Chapter 17
Chapter 17

07:22


Chapter 18
Chapter 18

06:43


Chapter 19
Chapter 19

06:52


Chapter 20
Chapter 20

06:57


Chapter 21
Chapter 21

07:03


Chapter 22
Chapter 22

06:42


Chapter 23
Chapter 23

07:05


Chapter 24
Chapter 24

06:37


Chapter 25
Chapter 25

06:33


Chapter 26
Chapter 26

05:56


Chapter 27
Chapter 27

07:11


Chapter 28
Chapter 28

06:19


Chapter 29
Chapter 29

07:11


Chapter 30
Chapter 30

05:54


Chapter 31
Chapter 31

06:16


Chapter 32
Chapter 32

07:10


Chapter 33
Chapter 33

05:20


Chapter 34
Chapter 34

07:03


Chapter 35
Chapter 35

06:55


Chapter 36
Chapter 36

06:28


Chapter 37
Chapter 37

07:06


Chapter 38
Chapter 38

06:46


Chapter 39
Chapter 39

06:33


Chapter 40
Chapter 40

07:05


Chapter 41
Chapter 41

06:27


Chapter 42
Chapter 42

06:53


Chapter 43
Chapter 43

07:07


Chapter 44
Chapter 44

04:27