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Detailed Essays on Valentinianism


Valentinians taught a type of esoteric or "Gnostic" Christian theology. It stood in much the same relationship to Catholic Christianity as the Kabala does to mainstream Judaism. Valentinians made use of a series of elaborate metaphors to describe how human beings have become alienated from God and how they can be reconciled to God through Jesus Christ.

In these articles, many of the major themes are explored in detail, drawing on all surviving sources. No attempt has been made to distinguish the teaching of Valentinus from that of his school since only a few of his own writings survive.

Important variations between different strands of the Valentinian tradition are noted, but we will not dwell on them excessively. Many of these differences such as those in the naming and ordering of Aeons and details of the myth are largely cosmetic. The ideas underlying these texts can be seen as a coherent body of thought.

These articles have been written over a fifteen year period. Many of them have their origins as far back as the mid-1980's. These articles are not meant to be a substitute for reading the original texts.

Read some actual writings of the Valentinian School

The material in the "Valentinus and the Valentinian Tradition" section originally appeared on an internet site created by David Brons, who authored all content found in this section.  It is archived in the Gnostic Society Library by permission of the author.  All rights including right of electronic reproduction are reserved by David Brons  2003.