Friday, November 16, 2012

Following Quispel's Lead: Laying Out an Important Section in 'Justin's Syntagma'

I think we can begin to accept Quispel's basic idea that Against Heresies 1.11.1 is citing directly from the Syntagma associated with Justin:

Against Heresies 1.11.1

Let us now look at the inconsistent opinions of those heretics (for there are some two or three of them), how they do not agree in treating the same points, but alike, in things and names, set forth opinions mutually discordant. The first(1) of them, Valentinus, who adapted the principles of the heresy called "Gnostic" to the peculiar character of his own school, taught as follows: He maintained that there is a certain Dyad (twofold being), who is inexpressible by any name, of whom one part should be called Arrhetus (unspeakable), and the other Sige (silence). But of this Dyad a second was produced, one part of whom he names Pater, and the other Aletheia. From this Tetrad, again, arose Logos and Zoe, Anthropos and Ecclesia. These constitute the primary Ogdoad. He next states that from Logos and Zoe ten powers were produced, as we have before mentioned. But from Anthropos and Ecclesia proceeded twelve, one of which separating from the rest, and falling from its original condition, produced the rest of the universe. He also supposed two beings of the name of Horos, the one of whom has his place between Bythus and the rest of the Pleroma, and divides the created AEons from the uncreated Father, while the other separates their mother from the Pleroma. Christ also was not produced from the AEons within the Pleroma, but was brought forth by the mother who had been excluded from it, in virtue of her remembrance of better things, but not without a kind of shadow. He, indeed, as being masculine, having severed the shadow from himself, returned to the Pleroma; but his mother being left with the shadow, and deprived of her spiritual substance, brought forth another son, namely, the Demiurge, whom he also styles the supreme ruler of all those things which are subject to him. He also asserts that, along with the Demiurge, there was produced a left-hand power, in which particular he agrees with those falsely called Gnostics, of whom to we have yet to speak. Sometimes, again, he maintains that Jesus was produced from him who was separated from their mother, and united to the rest, that is, from Theletus, sometimes as springing from him who returned into the Pleroma, that is, from Christ; and at other times still as derived from Anthropos and Ecclesia. And he declares that the Holy Spirit was produced by Aletheia for the inspection and fructification of the AEons, by entering invisibly into them, and that, in this way, the AEons brought forth the plants of truth.

Yet when we look at what follows in Against Heresies and is paralleled in the Philosophumena, it is clear that an error has been picked up in Justin's Syntagma from a Latin original.  'Secundus' originally referenced a 'second' heretic in the original list whose name has been erased.  He is now - comically - 'Secundus' the second Valentinian heretic.  The person who edited this name out was a Christian.  The 'second heretic' was probably someone embarrassing to the Catholic tradition.

I would contend that the Philosophumena is not following Irenaeus but the source behind this section of Irenaeus's Against the Valentians (= Justin's syntagma).  The question of why the Philosophumena omits the equivalent of AH 1.11.1 is interesting.  We should also remember that Epiphanius has the original version of (a) Irenaeus's Against the Valentinians and (b) his Against the Marcians where (a) Epiphanes is referenced as the third Valentinian in the last (as the Philosophumena) and (b) Colorabus and Heracleon are referenced as Marcians (unlike the Philosophumena but where the Philosophumena is consciously 'correcting' this understanding in Against the Marcians.
Against Heresies Book 1.11

2. Secundus 

again affirms that the primary Ogdoad consists of a right hand and a left hand Tetrad, 

and teaches that the one of these is called light, and the other darkness. But he maintains that the power which separated from the rest, and fell away, did not proceed directly from the thirty AEons, but from their fruits.

3. There is another, who is a renowned teacher among them,

and who, struggling to reach something more sublime, and to attain to a kind of higher knowledge, has explained the primary Tetrad as follows: There is [he says] a certain Proarche who existed before all things, surpassing all thought, speech, and nomenclature, whom I call Monotes (unity). Together with this Monotes there exists a power, which again I term Henotes (oneness). This Henotes and Monotes, being one, produced,

yet not so as to bring forth apart from themselves, as an emanation

the beginning of all things, an intelligent, unbegotten, and invisible being, which beginning language terms "Monad." With this Monad there co-exists a power of the same essence, which again I term Hen (One). These powers then--Monotes, and Henotes, and Monas, and Hen--produced the remaining company of the AEons.

4. Iu, Iu! Pheu, Pheu!--for well may we utter these tragic exclamations at such a pitch of audacity in the coining of names as he has displayed without a blush, in devising a nomenclature for his system of falsehood. For when he declares: There is a certain Proarche before all things, surpassing all thought, whom I call Monoten; and again, with this Monotes there co-exists a power which I also call Henores,- -it is most manifest that he confesses the things which have been said to be his own invention, and that he himself has given names to his scheme of things, which had never been previously suggested by any other. It is manifest also, that he himself is the one who has had sufficient audacity to coin these names; so that, unless he had appeared in the world, the truth would still have been destitute of a name. But, in that case, nothing hinders any other, in dealing with the same subject, to affix names after such a fashion as the following: There(5) is a certain Proarche, royal, surpassing all thought, a power existing before every other substance, and extended into space in every direction. But along with it there exists a power which I term a Gourd; and along with this Gourd there exists a power which again I term Utter-Emptiness. This Gourd and Emptiness, since they are one, produced (and yet did not simply produce, so as to be apart from themselves) a fruit, everywhere visible, eatable, and delicious, which fruit-language calls a Cucumber. Along with this Cucumber exists a power of the same essence, which again I call a Melon. These powers, the Gourd, Utter-Emptiness, the Cucumber, and the Melon, brought forth the remaining multitude of the delirious melons of Valentinus. For if it is fitting that that language which is used respecting the universe be transformed to the primary Tetrad, and if any one may assign names at his pleasure, who shall prevent us from adopting these names, as being much more credible [than the others], as well as in general use, and understood by all?

5. Others still, however, have called their primary and first-begotten Ogdoad by the following names: first, Proarche; then Anennoetos; thirdly, Arrhetos; and fourthly, Aoratos. Then, from the first, Proarche, there was produced, in the first and fifth place, Arche; from Anennoetos, in the second and sixth place, Acataleptos; from Arrhetos, in the third and seventh place, Anonomastos; and from Aoratos, in the fourth and eighth place, Agennetos. This is the Pleroma of the first Ogdoad. They maintain that these powers were anterior to Bythus and Sige, that they may appear more perfect than the perfect, and more knowing than the very Gnostics To. these persons one may justly exclaim: "O ye trifling sophists!" since, even respecting Bythus himself, there are among them many and discordant opinions. For some/declare him to be without a consort, and neither male nor female, and, in fact, nothing at all; while others affirm him to be masculo-feminine, assigning to him the nature of a hermaphrodite; others, again, allot Sige to him as a spouse, that thus may be formed the first conjunction.

12.1. But the followers of Ptolemy say that he (Bythos) has two consorts, which they also name Diatheses (affections), viz., Ennoae and Thelesis. For, as they affirm, he first conceived the thought of producing something, and then willed to that effect. Wherefore, again, these two affections, or powers, Ennoea and Thelesis, having intercourse, as it were, between themselves, the production of Monogenes and Aletheia took place according to conjunction. These two came forth as types and images of the two affections of the Father,--visible representations of those that were invisible,--Nous (i.e., Monogenes) of Thelesis, and Aletheia of Ennoea, and accordingly the image resulting from Thelesis was masculine, while that from Ennoea was feminine. Thus Thelesis (will) became, as it were, a faculty of Ennoea (thought). For Ennoea continually yearned after offspring; but she could not of herself bring forth that which she desired. But when the power of Thelesis (the faculty of will) came upon her, then she brought forth that on which she had brooded.

2. These fancied beings (like the Jove of Homer, who is represented as passing an anxious sleepless night in devising plans for honouring Achilles and destroying numbers of the Greeks) will not appear to you, my dear friend, to be possessed of greater knowledge than He who is the God of the universe. He, as soon as He thinks, also performs what He has willed; and as soon as He wills, also thinks that which He has willed; then thinking when He wills, and then willing when He thinks, since He is all thought, [all will, all mind, all light,] all eye, all ear, the one entire fountain of all good things.

3. Those of them, however, who are deemed more skilful than the persons who have just been mentioned, say that the first Ogdoad was not produced gradually, so that one AEon was sent forth by another, but that all the AEons were brought into existence at once by Propator and his Ennoea. He (Colorbasus) affirms this as confidently as if he had assisted at their birth. Accordingly, he and his followers maintain that Anthropos and Ecclesia were not produced, as others hold, from Logos and Zoe; but, on the contrary, Logos and Zoe from Anthropos and Ecclesia. But they express this in another form, as follows: When the Propator conceived the thought of producing something, he received the name of Father. But because what he did produce was true, it was named Aletheia. Again, when he wished to reveal himself, this was termed Anthropos. Finally, when he produced those whom he had previously thought of, these were named Ecclesia. Anthropos, by speaking, formed Logos: this is the first-born son. But Zoe followed upon Logos; and thus the first Ogdoad was completed.
Philosophumena 6.23

1 A certain Secundus,

born about the same time with Ptolemaeus, expresses himself thus:

that there is a right tetrad and a left tetrad,

namely, light and darkness. And he affirms that the power which withdrew and laboured under deficiency, was not produced from the thirty Aeons, but from the fruits of these.

Some other, however--Epiphanes, a teacher among them

expresses himself thus: "The earliest originating principle was inconceivable, ineffable, and unnameable;" and he calls this Monotes. And (he maintains) that there co-exists with this (principle) a power which he denominates Henotes. This Henotes and this Monotes, not by projection (from themselves), sent forth

a principle (that should preside) over all intelligibles; (and this was) both unbegotten and invisible, and he styles it a Monad. "With this power co-exists a power of the same essence, which very (power) I call Unity. These four powers sent forth the remainder of the projections of the Aeons."

But others, again, denominate the chief and originating Ogdoad, (which is) fourth (and) invisible, by the following names: first, Proarche; next, Anennoetus; third, Arrhetus; and fourth, Aoratus. And that from the first, Proarche, was projected by a first and fifth place, Arche; and from Anennoetus, by a second and sixth place, Acataleptus; and from Arrhetus, by a third and seventh place, Anonomastus; and from Aoratus, Agennetus, a complement of the first Ogdoad. They wish that these powers should exist before Bythus and Sige.

Concerning, however, Bythus himself, there are many different opinions.

Some affirm him to be unwedded, neither male nor female; but others (maintain) that Sige, who is a female, is present with him, and that this constitutes the first conjugal union.

But the followers of Ptolemaeus assert that (Bythus) has two spouses, which they call likewise dispositions, viz., Ennoia and Thelesis. For first the notion was conceived of projecting anything; next followed, as they say, the will to do so. Wherefore also these two dispositions and powers--namely, Ennoia and Thelesis--being, as it were, mingled one with the other, there ensued a projection of Monogenes and Aletheia by means of a conjugal union. And the consequence was, that visible types and images of those two dispositions of the Father came forth from the invisible (Aeons), viz., from Thelema, Nous, and from Ennoia, Aletheia. And on this account the image of the subsequently generated Thelema is (that of a) male; but (the image) of the unbegotten Ennoia is (that of a) female, since volition is, as it were, a power of conception. For conception always cherished the idea of a projection, yet was not of itself at least able to project itself, but cherished the idea (of doing so). When, however, the power of volition (would be present), then it projects the idea which had been conceived.

It would also seem that 'Colorbasus' is a mistake picked up in Against the Marcians from the original Aramaic 'all four.'  How this error was made and by whom is puzzling.

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