Comparative Religions – Christianity 4

In a way, Unity is regarded a ‘protestant movement’ because it finds its roots partly in Christianity. Unity’s forefathers, the Fillmores, created the Unity Movement combining the theology of different Christian, Jewish, Arabic and Eastern traditions.

So I started a series on introducing different faiths and traditions to show you how Unity embraces them all in a way that it can provide a home for anyone regardless of beliefs, culture, religion, race, etc.

These are many different approaches to the Oneness with God or the Divine Presence, don’t let words mislead you! Everyone is right! All faith and spiritual movements, religions included, were created by a group who were in search for God following the example of someone inspiring.

We must always remember that everyone is in search for God in their own way. It is because what we call God is an energy source that is pure Love and Compassion amongst many other wonderful qualities.

Everyone wants to be Loved unconditionally, however, that kind of Love only exists in the realm of the Spiritual. No human being can love another person unconditionally. It is because of our own personal limitations and karma (issues to learn or let go of). Our vision is blurred by these therefor we cannot see anyone in their purity of Spirit.

What we can do is to have compassion; compassion for self and others, knowing that regardless how it may look, we are all in search for our best selves and for God’s Living Loving Spark within.


It is important to mention, that one of the most relevant element of Gnostic Christianity to Unity is that in philosophical thought, logos (“word”) was the principle of rationality that connected the highest god to the material world. In Unity, you will find that we place emphases on the words we use. We create positive affirmations and so-called denials to elevate  our consciousness.

Personally, among all Christian traditions, I feel the closest to Gnostic Christianity. I highlighted parts of the text below that felt meaningful to me.


Antient Christianity – The Gnostics 

Gnostics: those who embody the highest ethical and spiritual values, such as temperance, diligence, humility, chastity, generosity, etc. and who can at will have personal experience with divinity.

Gnosticism (after gnôsis, the Greek word for “knowledge” or “insight”) is the name given to a loosely organized religious and philosophical movement that flourished in the first and second centuries CE. The exact origin(s) of this school of thought cannot be traced, although it is possible to locate influences or sources as far back as the second and first centuries BCE, such as the early treatises of the Corpus Hermeticum, the Jewish Apocalyptic writings, and especially Platonic philosophy and the Hebrew Scriptures themselves.



Gnostics promoted concepts of radical dualism that govern the universe. This was polarized as the soul/spark against the flesh, light against darkness. God, who does not create, originally emanated archons (powers), like the light from the sun, seen, but not physical. One of the archons, Sophia (“wisdom”), in a moment of weakness, produced the Demi-Urge, who then created a physical universe, including humans. In philosophical thought, logos (“word”) was the principle of rationality that connected the highest god to the material world.

Some systems claimed a mythic “pre-Adam-and-Eve” before their manifestation as humans in the Garden of Eden. In Gnostic understanding, the fall occurred as the result of physical creation. In keeping with the “oneness” of the eternal God, Gnostics promoted the idea of androgyny or the union of gender. After the fall, the logos, the pre-existent Christ, came to earth in human appearance to teach humanity how to return to this original androgyny and reunite with God. According to them, God sent Christ to restore the original cosmos. As the divine spark within humans had fallen asleep, it did not remember its origins. Humans had to be awakened to the presence of this piece of god within them; a concept mirroring Zen Buddhism. When this is accomplished, the rule of archons would end.

The Gnostics were condemned as heretics by the Church Fathers for the following reasons:

  1. The Gnostics promoted a higher God of pure essence and love as the being the true God over the creator God.
  2. By the 2nd century CE, Christianity was a separate religion from Judaism, but Christians retained the God of Israel and many teachings of the Jewish Scriptures. Gnostics agreed that the creator God in Genesis created the universe, but creation consisted of evil matter. In some Gnostic systems, the God of Israel was not only evil, but Satan himself. Thus, the commandments of the God of Israel were deemed invalid.
  3. Gnostics claimed that their teachings came directly from Jesus. In those scenes in the gospels when Jesus takes the disciples aside to better inform them, he also taught secret things that were passed down to them. The Church Fathers countered this with a claim of apostolic tradition; that their teachings came from Jesus to the original disciples, who passed it to the founding bishops of their communities.
  4. Consisting of physical matter, the human body was evil. For most Gnostic systems, Jesus was not incarnated into a human body. They preached the concept known as docetic or “appearance.” Jesus only appeared in the form of a human so that he could communicate with humanity. If Christ never had a material body, the central pillars of Christianity, the crucifixion and the resurrection of the dead, were nullified.
  5. A Gnostic, after being awakened, studied the heavens and learned the means to navigate the various layers. In this sense, Gnostics viewed salvation as an individual matter, rather than involving the rest of the community. In other words, salvation could not be achieved through the cross, church hierarchy, or rules.
  6. Once one successfully made it through the upper atmosphere, one’s spark, now home, united with the godhead; in some systems one became God.
  7. In Gnostic systems, there is a denial of what was becoming standard Christian teaching, eschatology, or the future return of Christ to usher in the kingdom of God. For Gnostics, the kingdom is within the individual.

The schools of philosophy taught that one should care for the soul over the body (apathea – “no passions”), not letting the physical urges of the body rule one’s life. Such teachings were construed as ascesis (“discipline”), as in athletic disciplining of the body. Gnostic Christians took control of the body literally. They were the first to practice celibacy (not entering into a marriage contract) as well as chastity (never indulging in sexual intercourse). In this way, the traditional life-cycle was broken; no more divine sparks would be trapped in a physical body.

Gnostic Writings – The Nag Hammadi Library

The Church Fathers were voracious in their criticism of Gnostic writings. Scholars, however, were skeptical and could not be sure that the quotations were accurate until 1945 CE. Then two brothers were digging nitrate in the Egyptian desert near the town of Nag Hammadi in Upper Egypt when their shovel hit a large jar filled with codices (early books). They took them to a man they knew who was active in the black-market antiquities business. There were 13 books containing treatises, gospels, and Gnostic myths. They are collected in one volume, The Nag Hammadi Library. As it turns out, the Church Fathers did a fair job of copying. Whereas they utilized quotes, we now have the complete texts for a better analysis of each document.

Gnostic gospels differ from the canonical gospels of the New Testament. They often lack a narrative or a story and consist of simply the teachings of Jesus in elucidating the existence of the true God.


Gnostic concepts are now included in science-fiction films, beginning with Ridley Scott’s 1982 CE Blade Runner. It was based upon the short story Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick. The plot concerned the creation of perfect androids, who nevertheless began to develop human emotions because of memory implants in their systems. The Wachowski brothers’ 1999 CE hit release, The Matrix draws on Gnostic Christianity and Buddhism to pose humanity’s fundamental problem and its solution in terms of ignorance and enlightenment. Because of ignorance, people mistake the material world for something real, but they may from this dream with help from a guide who teaches them their true nature.


Resurrected Masters

“All the masters who have resurrected live with their physical bodies for millions of years… Only the initiates who have reached these summits can live and direct the current of life of the centuries. Only here the initiate no longer needs a spouse. The initiate’s physical body remains in Jinn state; this is the gift of Cupid. Nevertheless, the initiate can become visible and tangible in this tridimensional world wherever is necessary, and works in the physical world under the commands of the White Lodge. As a Resurrected Master, the initiate commands the great life, and has power over the fire, air, water, and earth. Yes, all of Nature kneels before them and obeys them.” -Samael Aun Weor, The Major Mysteries

Here are a few notable examples of these exemplary people:

Aberamentho (Jesus); Buddha Shakyamuni; Babaji; Krishna; Melchizedek; Moshe (Moses); Sanat Kumara, etc.


If there’s a single quintessential Gnostic text, it’s almost certainly the Secret Book of John, also sometimes called the Apocryphon of John. (“Apocryphon” is just a fancy word for “secret book.”) It’s also a landmark text for early Christianity as a whole, because as Karen L. King notes, it “was the first Christian writing to formulate a comprehensive narrative of the nature of God, the origin of the world, and human salvation.”[1]

Read the entire article on the Book of John here CLICK