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Gnostic Mysteries of Sex
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

Introduction The Gnostic Sex Book

Confessio Churtonatis

Part I

THE SEX GNOSTICS

ONE--The "Filthy Gnostickes"

Great Monsters of Heresy

Is an Erotic Christian Religion Really Possible?

The Essential Myth

Androgyny

TWO--Heresy Starts in Eden: The Accusers

The Heresiologists

Clement of Alexandria

Tertullian

Hippolytus

Epiphanius

THREE--How to Be a Superman: The First Gnostic

Sex and Simon

Simon Says--According to Hippolytus

Epiphanius on Simon

FOUR--After Simon, the Deluge

Cerdo

Saturnilus

FIVE--The Dirty People

Sethians, Seed-Gatherers, and Serpent-Worshippers

Hippolytus on the Naasseni

Kundalini Gnostics?

Epiphanius on Barbeliotes and Borborites

SIX--Tantra--Remarkable Parallels

SEVEN--Be My Valentine

EIGHT--A Question of Seed

Senseless and Crack-Brained

Tertullian on the Valentinians

Clement of Alexandria and Theodotus

A New Picture of Valentinian Sex

NINE--The Valentinian Marriage


The Knowledge of the Heart

The Good Spermaritan

TEN--In Search of the Mystery of Prouneikos and Barbelo in Alexandria

Philo of Alexandria (ca. 20 BCE-ca. 50 CE)

ELEVEN--The Lascivious One

The Wild One

Part II

GNOSTIC LOVE AND THE SPIRITUAL REVOLUTION

TWELVE--All You Need Is Sophia

Return to the Troubadours

THIRTEEN--The Golden Riddle

The Golden Ball

The Coy Mistress

The Spherical Art

The Conversion of the Jews

Heaven's Gate

Thy Heaven Doors Are My Hell Gates

Bibliography

Index

About the Author

Tobias Churton is Britain's leading scholar of Western Esotericism, a world authority on Gnosticism, Hermeticism, and Rosicrucianism. An Honorary Fellow of Exeter University, where he is faculty lecturer in Rosicrucianism and Freemasonry, he holds a master's degree in Theology from Brasenose College, Oxford, and is the author of many books, including Gnostic Philosophy, The Invisible History of the Rosicrucians, and Aleister Crowley: The Beast in Berlin. He lives in England.

Reviews

"Gnostic Mysteries of Sex takes us on a wild ride through the secret, enigmatic and heretical world of Gnostics, medieval troubadours, the visions of Blake, and the counterculture of the 1960s--all united in their quest for union with God. The reader should not be fooled by Tobias Churton's inimitable style of writing, because beneath his humor and provocative statements, there's a profound understanding of one the greatest mysteries of all time--the power of sexual gnosis." * Henrik Bogdan, associate professor in religious studies, University of Gothenburg *
"In Gnostic Mysteries of Sex, Tobias Churton works to heal Western civilization's deepest wound--the millennia-old divorce of sex and spirit. Revealed herein are the dangerous and radical sexual secrets that the Church could not eradicate, kept hidden by the occult underground through long centuries of persecution, torture, and crusade. And here is the radical message of the Gnostics, as shocking and critically important now as it was in the second century--that sex is the gateway of liberation, and the kingdom of heaven is within." * Jason Louv, author of Generation Hex and coauthor of Thee Psychick Bible *
"Churton brings to this frank and deeply insightful study a surprisingly personal and moving narrative. The late scholar of Gnosticism Ioan Couliano once said the Gnostics were the champions of free thought--asserting a freedom to explore every logical possibility of their complex demiurgic estrangement from God and nature. It's not so surprising then that sexual metaphysics and practices in all of their permutations were explored, along with the big questions they pose, and the gnosis they transmit. As Churton observes, 'The new heaven and new earth result from an improvement of sensual enjoyment. There was, and is, need of it.'" * Stephen J. King (Shiva X Degrees), Grand Master, Ordo Templi Orientis *
"Readable and hugely informative, Churton makes a solid case that explains the Christian teachings on sex as reactive to the non-canonical texts. As Churton writes, sex is the 'essential battleground between heresy and orthodoxy.' I suspect this may be a totally new branch of scholarship." * Vanilla Beer, artist *
"An erudite view of a fascinating subject. Highly recommended." * Donald Traxler, translator of the works of Maria de Naglowska *
"Churton (The Mysteries of John the Baptist) takes readers on a historical tour of available writings on sexual gnosis. ...Churton's scholarship seems to be both deep and broad..." * Publishers Weekly, October 2015 *
"If you think the last word has long since been said on the subject of sex, then you need to read this book. The question of how to reconcile sex with spirituality has long preoccupied the religious culture of both East and West. Churton explores how the Gnostics had their own approach to this issue, an approach that he traces down the centuries through the Rosicrucians and the work of poets such as Andrew Marvell and William Blake. Their message, Churton shows, points the way to a glorious synthesis of the sexual and the spiritual." * Christopher McIntosh, Ph.D., Honorary University Fellow and Western Esotericism lecturer at the Univ *
"One of the world's greatest scholars of what Blake calls the 'excluded' tradition, Tobias Churton brings together a profound knowledge of Western esotericism with extensive new research to weave a rich and multifaceted tapestry detailing the long-hidden mysteries of sexual gnosis. Including in-depth analysis and detailed commentary on select sacred and heretical texts from Epiphanius, Hippolytus, Valentinus, Blake, Crowley, and more, Gnostic Mysteries of Sex is an illuminating volume filled with passion, truth, fascinating detail, and dynamic historical perspectives." * John Zorn, musician *

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