Gnostic Studies on the Web


Newsgroups: (Paul Trejo)
Subject: Re: Simon Magus
Date: Sun, 4 Sep 1994 19:19:21 GMT

I.E.Schwann ( wrote: : Many years ago in the time of Christ, lived an enigma by the name of : Simon Magus..... : He was accompanied by a lady of great beauty, i think Helena was her name... : he was also knicknamed "the standing one" for obvious reasons... : He was one of the first gnostics, though he had a reputation as a : sourcerer too. : He is also often confused with other "Simons" of the age, of which there : were a few. : Does anyone know the full story? : Respect, : Schwann

Dear Schwann,

The Christian bishop Irenaeus, about 180 AD, wrote one of the earliest Christian refutations of Gnosis, entitled, ADVERSUS HAERESES.

He begins saying that the history of Gnosticism is the key to understanding Gnosticism.

His view of the history of Gnosticism begins with Simon Magus, the person of whom you ask.

Simon was a famous Magician who lived during the reign of Claudius Caesar (of "I, CLAUDIUS"), which places him at the time of the Apostles Peter and Paul. The book of ACTS refers to him in Chapter Eight.

Simon taught that he was the Son of God, destined to appear among the Jews. He claimed he would descend in Samaria as the Father, and among the other nations as the Holy Ghost. He said he was one with the Father.

He was always accompanied by his consort Helen, a converted prostitute from Tyre (as Bishop Irenaeus tells it). Simon claimed she was his first-born creation from his holy mind, the Mother of all. Helen first gave Father Simon the idea to create angels. She brought Simon's will to the lower planes of material existence, and made the world.

She was held captive by the lower forces, who refused to let her leave. They had no knowledge of Simon, and enclosed her in a female human body, and she re-incarnated as female for centuries. She was the same Helen of the Trojan War.

She continued to degrade over time, until she finally became a prostitute. She was the Lost Sheep spoken of in LUKE 15:6, it was claimed. Simon, Son of God, came down to earth to rescue her, and while he was on earth he would offer men his Gnosis (knowledge) for their salvation.

He was never really a man, though, and though he appeared to suffer in Judea, he never really suffered. To believe in Simon is enough for salvation, and no further duties were required of his believers to be saved (as in EPHESIANS 2:8).

Simon announced the world would eventually be destroyed, but his believers would be saved from the dark forces which govern these lower planes.

The followers of Simon cast out demons, handle snakes, lay on hands for healing, and perform all sorts of magical rituals.

It has been noted that the accounts of Jesus and his female companian Mary Magdellene are somewhat similar.