GNOSTICISM AND BUDDHISM
Gnosis and Dharma
Although separated by great distances, the Gnosis of the Gnostic Christians echoes that of the Buddha Gautama, and of the Enlightened Tibetan Masters in many ways. This page seeks to identify, correlate, and explain their connections, section by section, that their Gnosis may be shared and encourage both Buddhists and Gnostics to embrace these parallel traditions of the Supreme Miracle for the sake of all sentient beings’ liberation.
Buddha Nature and Sophia Achamoth
Buddha Nature is the absolute potentiality for a given being within Samsara to become enlightened - it is the clear and enlightened mind that we cloud with delusion and ignorance. It is analogous to Sophia Achamoth’s immanent spark of the Divine veiled by the Kenomic flesh and blood: through these understandings we can bring forth the importance of nonattachment in revealing the underlying transcendent greatness of certain phenomena.
The Demiurge and impermanence
In Buddhadharma, we are instructed to see that all phenomena are impermanent, interdependent, ever-changing, and that this is a fundamental nature of Samsara. The Gnostic scriptures' teachings on the Demiurge likewise tell us of a fickleness and imperfection in the material world: they tell us that however much we cling and beg to preserve sense pleasures, to lose our pain in the throes of hedonistic pleasure, we will never attain the beautiful and perfect life of Nirvana or the Pleroma within them.
The Trikaya and Trinity
The Dharmakaya & Dharmadatu and the Father & the Pleroma
The Dharmadatu is the realm or dimension in which Absolute Reality, pure Truth and Awareness is inseparably extant, present, and abiding in the pure all-knowing and all-loving bliss of enlightenment. The Dharmakaya is one of the three classical bodies or emanations of a Buddha - it is their “Wisdom Body” and an expression of Enlightenment unadulterated by anything but knowing. It abides within the Dharmadatu. This complex relationship is highly analogous to the Father and Pleroma in how many struggle, even for decades, to understand entirely the nature of their interconnectedness and simultaneous distinction. Whilst the Father is in the Pleroma, and a vital part of Its nature, the Pleroma can extend beyond such and never lose the same omnibenevolent nature. These bodies are both seemingly the most removed from our human world, but we must all strive to remember that their Omnibenevolence as philosophically implied by their very titles extends to every single sentient being, distant or not.
The Nirmanakaya and Eden’s Christ
The Nirmanakaya is the physical body of a Buddha, given material form in order to impart enlightenment upon delusioned beings. The example most prolific in our age is the Prince, Siddhartha Gautama. The use of a physical body to cause humanity to enlighten themselves is not unique though - indeed, Christ’s manifestation as serpent in the Garden of Eden, bringing Saint Eve to eat the Forbidden Fruit and inspiring humanity to take upon themselves spirituality, gnosis and piety, despite the commands of delusion and material corruption. These acts of compassion are both incredible, and through them we must know that the Supremely Enlightened are not uncaring - they love us deeply and will go to any extent that we might be delivered from this existence.
The Sambhogakaya and Holy Spirit
The Sambhogakaya is the Bliss Body of a Buddha, an ethereal emanation that appears in visions, and gives secret teachings. This form is why a Nirmanakaya Buddha can teach in one place, whilst secret and tantric teachings are imparted more privately elsewhere only to prepared students. The Holy Spirit is a complex question in Gnosticism itself, but can be conjured to represent ideas of the Sethian Barbelo or Sophia herself. Akin to the Sambhogakaya Buddharupa (Buddha-body), the Holy Spirit is an agent in matters of distinct spiritual significance, and acts as Enlightened Beings’ influence and manifestation. Whenever we read of a vision from God, whenever we read of Christ without Jesus’ body, whenever we read of revelation’s Glory and co-action with God (such as in the Apocryhpon of John, or the emanation of the Good into the World through Sophia’s repentance and plan), we are reading of the actions of Sambhogakaya.