Claremont Colleges Digital Libraries

Nag Hammadi Archive

Description and organization

The Nag Hammadi codices, ancient manuscripts containing over fifty religious and philosophical texts hidden in an earthenware jar for 1,600 years, were accidentally discovered in upper Egypt in the year 1945. A group of farmers came across an entire collection of books written in Coptic, the very language spoken by Egyptian Christians. The excavations, prepared by James M. Robinson, the former director of the Institute for Antiquity and Christianity and Professor Emeritus at The Claremont Graduate School, did not occur until 1975 due to travel restrictions and a breakdown in political relations between the United States and Egypt.

This immensely important discovery included a large number of primary Gnostic scriptures. One text in particular received much attention – the Gospel according to Thomas, which was originally called ‘the secret words of Jesus written by Thomas’. These texts, scriptures such as the Gospel of Thomas, the Gospel of Philip, and the Gospel of Truth, were once thought to have been entirely destroyed during the early Christian struggle to define « orthodoxy. »  The discovery and translation of the Nag Hammadi library, completed in the 1970’s, has provided momentum to a major reassessment of early Christian history and the nature of Gnosticism.

The images in this collection record the environments surrounding excavations, visiting dignitaries, and the scholars working on the codices. Today, the codices are conserved at the Coptic Museum in Cairo and due to their antiquity and exposure are no longer completely legible. Photographs fortuitously taken in the late 1970’s are one of the only means of deciphering the writing contained in these ancient texts.

The Nag Hammadi codices images in this collection are the Institute for Antiquity and Christianity’s J-Series negatives taken by Basile Psiroukis in September 1973. They are an earlier and different set of photos than the ones published by E. J. Brill from 1973-79 as The Facsimile Edition of the Nag Hammadi Codices. These earlier J-series negatives include the photographer’s notes and contain many differences, large and small, from the Brill photos. Every effort has been made to match these negatives to the later UNESCO photographs published by E. J. Brill. Additional series’ of the codices are soon to be digitized and will be added to the collection.

(Text by the organizers)


Plotinus and Epicurus

Matter, Perception, Pleasure

Angela Longo, Daniela Patrizia Taormina (ed.),  New York: Cambridge University Press, 2016


This volume investigates the reasons why Plotinus, a philosopher inspired by Plato, made critical use of Epicurean philosophy. Eminent scholars show that some fundamental Epicurean conceptions pertaining to ethics, physics, epistemology and theology are drawn upon in the Enneads to discuss crucial notions such as pleasure and happiness, providence and fate, matter and the role of sense perception, intuition and intellectual evidence in relation to the process of knowledge acquisition. By focusing on the meaning of these terms in Epicureanism, Plotinus deploys sophisticated methods of comparative analysis and argumentative procedures that ultimately lead him to approach certain aspects of Epicurus’ philosophy as a benchmark for his own theories and to accept, reject or discredit the positions of authors of his own day. At the same time, these discussions reveal what aspects of Epicurean philosophy were still perceived to be of vital relevance in the third century AD.

(Text from the publisher)

Table of contents





IntroductionAngela Longo, Daniela Patrizia Taormina

Part I – Historical overview

Chapter 1 – The school and texts of Epicurus in the early centuries of the Roman empire – Tiziano Dorandi

Part II – Common anti-Epicurean arguments in Plotinus

Chapter 2 – The mention of Epicurus in Plotinus’ tr. 33 (Enn. II 9) in the context of the polemics between pagans and Christians in the second to third centuries AD – Angela Longo
Chapter 3 – Epicureans and Gnostics in tr. 47 (Enn. III 2) 7.29–41 – Manuel Mazzetti

Chapter 4 – ‘Heavy birds’ in tr. 5 (Enn. V 9) 1.8 – Mauricio Pagotto Marsola

Chapter 5 – Plotinus, Epicurus and the problem of intellectual evidence – Pierre-Marie Morel

Chapter 6 – ‘What is known through sense perception is an image’. Plotinus’ tr. 32 (Enn. V 5) 1.12–19 – Daniela Patrizia Taormina

Part III – Plotinus’ criticism of Epicurean doctrines

Chapter 7 – Corporeal matter, indefiniteness and multiplicity – Marco Ninci

Chapter 8 – Plotinus’ reception of Epicurean atomism in On Fate, tr. 3 (Enn. III 1) 1–3 – Erik Eliasson

Part IV – Epicurean elements in Plotinus

Chapter 9 – Athroa epibolē – Andrei Cornea

Chapter 10 – Plotinus and Epicurus on pleasure and happiness – Alessandro Linguiti


Index locorum

Index of modern authors

Index of main concepts


Classical Philosophy

A history of philosophy without any gaps, 1

Peter Adamson, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014


Classical Philosophy is the first of a series of books in which Peter Adamson aims ultimately to present a complete history of philosophy, more thoroughly but also more enjoyable than ever before. In short, lively chapters, based on the popular History of Philosophy podcast, he offers an accessible, humorous, and detailed look at the emergence of philosophy with the Presocratics, the probing questions of Socrates, and the first full flowering of philosophy with the dialogues of Plato and the treatises of Aristotle. The story is told ‘without any gaps’, discussing not only such major figures but also less commonly discussed topics like the Hippocratic Corpus, the Platonic Academy, and the role of women in ancient philosophy. Within the thought of Plato and Aristotle, the reader will find in-depth introductions to major works, such as the Republic and the Nicomachean Ethics, which are treated in detail that is unusual in an introduction to ancient philosophy. Adamson looks at fascinating but less frequently read Platonic dialogues like the Charmides and Cratylus,  and Aristotle’s ideas in zoology and poetics. This full coverage allows him to tackle ancient discussions in all areas of philosophy, including epistemology, metaphysics, philosophy of language, philosophy of science, ethics and politics. Attention is also given to the historical and literary context of classical philosophy, with an exploration of how early Greek cosmology responded to the poets Homer and Hesiod, how Socrates was presented by the comic playwright Aristophanes and the historian Xenophon, and how events in Greek history may have influenced Plato’s thought. This is a new kind of history which will bring philosophy to life for all readers, including those coming to the subject for the first time.

(Text from the publisher)

Table of contents


Early Greek Philosophy 
1. Everything is Full of Gods: Thales
2. Infinity and Beyond: Anaximander and Anaximines
3. Created in Our Image: Xenophanes
4. The Man with the Golden Thigh: Pythagoras
5. Old Man River: Heraclitus
6. The Road Less Traveled: Parmenides
7. You Can’t Get There From Here: the Eleatics
8. The Final Cut: The Atomists
9. Mind over mixture: Anaxagoras
10. All You Need is Love, and Five Other Things: Empedocles
11. Good Humor Men: the Hippocratic Corpus
12. Making the Weaker Argument the Stronger: The Sophists

Socrates and Plato 
13. Socrates Without Plato: The Portrayals of Aristophanes and Xenophon
14. Method Man: Plato’s Socrates
15. In Dialogue: The Life and Writings of Plato
16. Know Thyself: Two Unloved Platonic Dialogues
17. Virtue Meets its Match: Plato’s Gorgias
18. We Don’t Need No Education: Plato’s Meno
19. I Know, Because the Caged Bird Sings: Plato’s Theaetetus
20. Famous Last Words: Plato’s Phaedo
21. Soul and the City: Justice in Plato’s Republic
22. Ain’t No Sunshine: the Cave Allegory of Plato’s Republic
23. Second Thoughts: Plato’s Parmenides and the Forms
24. Untying the Not: Plato’s Sophist
25. What’s in a Name?: Plato’s Cratylus
26. A Likely Story: Plato’s Timaeus
27. Wings of Desire: Plato’s Erotic Dialogues
28. Last Judgments: Plato, Poetry, and Myth

29. Mr Know it All: Aristotle’s Life and Works
30. The Philosopher’s Toolkit: Aristotle’s Logical Works
31. A Principled Stand: Aristotle’s Epistemology
32. Down to Earth: Aristotle on Substance
33. Form and Function: Aristotle’s Four Causes
34. Let’s Get Physical: Aristotle’s Natural Philosophy
35. Soul Power: Aristotle’s De Anima
36. Classified Information: Aristotle’s Biology
37. The Goldilocks Theory: Aristotle’s Ethics
38. The Second Self: Aristotle on Pleasure and Friendship
39. God Only Knows: Aristotle on Mind and God
40. Constitutional Conventions: Aristotle’s Political Philosophy
41. Stage Directions: Aristotle’s Rhetoric and Poetics
42. Anything You Can Do: Women and Ancient Philosophy
43. The Next Generation: The Followers of Plato and Aristotle
Guide to Further Reading



 Myth, Metaphor, and Philosophical Practice

Stephen R. L. Clark, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2016


Plotinus, the Roman philosopher (c. 204-270 CE) who is widely regarded as the founder of Neoplatonism, was also the creator of numerous myths, images, and metaphors. They have influenced both secular philosophers and Christian and Muslim theologians, but have frequently been dismissed by modern scholars as merely ornamental. In this book, distinguished philosopher Stephen R. L. Clark shows that they form a vital set of spiritual exercises by which individuals can achieve one of Plotinus’s most important goals: self-transformation through contemplation. Clark examines a variety of Plotinus’s myths and metaphors within the cultural and philosophical context of his time, asking probing questions about their contemplative effects. What is it, for example, to “think away the spatiality” of material things? What state of mind is Plotinus recommending when he speaks of love, or drunkenness, or nakedness? What star-like consciousness intended when he declares that we were once stars or are stars eternally? What does it mean to say that the soul goes around God? And how are we supposed to “bring the god in us back to the god in all”? Through these rich images and structures, Clark casts Plotinus as a philosopher deeply concerned with philosophy as a way of life.

(Text from the publisher)

Table of contents


Part I: Prolegomena
1.         Why Read Plotinus?
2.         How to Read Plotinus
3.         Theories about Metaphor
4.         Dialectic

Part II: Metaphorically Speaking
5.         Naked and Alone
6.         On Becoming Love
7.         Shadow Plays and Mirrors
8.         Reason Drunk and Sober
9.         Dancing
10.       Remembering and Forgetting
11.       Standing Up to the Blows of Fortune

Part III: The Plotinian Imaginary
12.       Platonic and Classical Myths
13.       Spheres and Circles
14.       Charms and Countercharms
15.       Invoking Demons
16.       Images Within and Without
17.       Fixed Stars and Planets
18.       Waking Up

Part IV: Understanding the Hypostases
19.       Matter
20.       Nature
21.       Soul
22.       Nous
23.       The One

Part V: The Plotinian Way

Index of Passages from the Enneads
Index of Names and Subjects


Version at BMCR home site

Gnose et manichéisme

Entre les oasis d’Egypte et la route de la soie

Hommage à Jean-Daniel Dubois

A. Van den Kerchove, L. G. Soares Santoprete (eds.), 2017


A l’occasion du départ à la retraite de Jean-Daniel Dubois de la direction d’études « Gnose et Manichéisme » à l’Ecole pratique des hautes études en 2015, plusieurs de ses collègues et amis ont tenu à lui rendre hommage. La diversité des thèmes, des écrits et des communautés culturelles et linguistiques étudiés dans les quarante-quatre contributions ici publiées, témoigne de la richesse du parcours intellectuel de Jean-Daniel Dubois, lequel s’étend des oasis d’Egypte jusqu’à la Route de la Soie. Ce volume s’adresse aux spécialistes de la Méditerranée, du Proche-Orient et de l’Extrême-Orient anciens. Il intéressera les historiens des religions, particulièrement ceux des mouvements chrétiens – dont les courants gnostiques -, du manichéisme, des cultes polythéistes et de l’islam, les philologues ainsi que les historiens de la philosophie de l’Antiquité tardive.

(Texte de la maison d’édition)

Table de matières

Anna Van den Kerchove et Luciana Gabriela Soares Santoprete

L’itinéraire intellectuel de Jean-Daniel Dubois
Anna Van den Kerchove et Luciana Gabriela Soares Santoprete
Bibliographie de Jean-Daniel Dubois
Anna Van den Kerchove et Luciana Gabriela Soares Santoprete
Tabula gratulatoria

PARTIE I. Écrits gnostiques
Not Really Non-Existent? A Suggestion for Interpreting and Restoring Zostrianos (Nag Hammadi Codex VIII, 1) 117, 11-15 – Stephen Emmel
L’avant-dernier feuillet de l’Évangile de Judas – une reconstitution – Gregor Wurst
La philosophie des systèmes gnostiques des premiers principes – Josep Montserrat-Torrents
El Sobre los principios de Orígenes y el Tratado tripartito (NHC I, 5) reconsiderados – Francisco García Bazán
The Anonymous Parmenides Commentary, Marius Victorinus, and the Sethian Platonizing Apocalypses: State of the Question – John D. Turner
Padre femenino. El Dios-Madre de los gnósticos – Mariano Troiano
The melothesia of the Apocryphon of John and the Umm al-kitāb – Einar Thomassen
Le théâtre du monde: illusion ou rédemption? – Claudine Besset-Lamoine

PARTIE II. L’Église manichéenne et la réception des écrits manichéens
Secrets of heaven: Manichaean cosmology in its late antique context – Jason David BeDuhn
Le jumeau et le paraclet céleste de Mani: quelques éléments de lecture et de réflexion – Simon C. Mimouni
Symbols of liberation: The Salvation-seeking Souls, the Primary Prophets, and the Light Mind in Manichaean Didactic Painting – Zsuzsanna Gulácsi
Exégèse manichéenne et anti-manichéenne de 2 Corinthiens 4, 4 chez Titus de Bostra (Contre les manichéens IV 108) – Madeleine Scopello
Vérité, Erreur et Mensonge dans le Psautier et les Kephalaia du Fayorem – Paul-Hubert Poirier
Le retour du refoulé. Le concept de la vision de Dieu pour Augustin à la suite des nouvelles recherches sur le manichéisme – Giovanni Filoramo
Sur les traces syriaques des manichéens : les réfutations de Moïse bar Kepha (IXes.) et de Jacques bar Šakko (XIIIs.) – Flavia Ruani
Mani déguisé en monophysite – Alain Le Boulluec
La colonne de lumière, une notion manichéenne dans l’ismaélisme ṭayyibite – Daniel De Smet
Les cinq esprits de l’homme divin (Aspects de l’imamologie duodécimaine XIII) – Mohammad-Ali Amir-Moezzi
‘In the name of Jesus’. Observations on the term ‘Jesus the Messiah’ in christian and manichaean texts from Central Asia – Samuel N. C. Lieu
Le chant divin : rôle et pouvoir de la musique rituelle. Des rites musicaux de l’Orient ancien aux hymnes des manichéens de Chine – Lucie Rault

PARTIE III. Acta Pilati et leur réception
À propos d’un passage mystérieux dans l’Évangile de Nicodème (XVI 3) – Bernard Outtier
Une polémique de rabbins évacuée dans les versions d’Acta Pilati 14.1.2 – Gérard Roquet
La gloria inexpresable. Las teofanías de los apócrifos del Antiguo Testamento y su significado en una variante copta de las Actas de Pilato – Magdalena Díaz Araujo
«Et les enseignes s’inclinèrent» : possibles allusions aux Actes de Pilate dans quelques homélies coptes – Anne-Catherine Baudoin
Diffusion et réception des Actes de Pilate dans la littérature byzantine – Rémi Gounelle
La manifestation de la royauté du Christ dans les Actes de Pilate ré-actualisée dans la liturgie byzantine sous l’impulsion du Pseudo-Germain de Constantinople – Christiane Furrer
The Troyes Redaction of the Evangelium Nicodemi and its Vernacular Legacy – Zbigniew Izydorczyk and Dario Bullitta
De quelques pièces du dossier syriaque sur Pilate : de la correspondance byzantine à la correspondance médiévale – Alain J. Desreumaux
À la recherche de la tradition perdue : à propos d’une édition critique de la version slave des Acta Pilati – Susana Torres Prieto

PARTIE IV. Lieux et figures
Le parent comique du monastère. À propos du De vita contemplativa de Philon d’Alexandrie – Tatjana Aleknienė
Épigraphie et expériences religieuses : le cas des ‘bains’ de Gadara (Palaestina IIa) – Nicole Belayche
Remarques à propos des fragments coptes 159-160, 302-304, conservés à l’IFAO du Caire: Une homélie copte sur la Vierge Marie attribuée à Cyrille de Jérusalem – Agnès Le Tiec
Bardaisan and the Bible – Alberto Camplani
La double figure de Joseph d’Arimathie : histoire de la réception d’un personnage biblique – Régis Burnet
Bartholomew’s martyrdoms : the Latin tradition – Els Rose
Kālēb, souverain et saint : un nouvel Alexandre? – Jacques-Noël Pérès
Loisy et les apocryphes pétriniens – Jean-Michel Roessli

PARTIE V. Pensées grecque et d’Orient
Visions et légitimation : voie hermétique de la connaissance et du salut dans Corpus Hermeticum I – Anna Van den Kerchove
OC 216 (dubium) des Places – Fragmentum Orphicum 353 Kern. Probleme und Interpretationen – Helmut Seng
Le mythe d’Ouranos, Kronos et Zeus comme argument antignostique chez Plotin – Luciana Gabriela Soares Santoprete
Le rituel théurgique de l’ensevelissement et le Phèdre de Platon. À propos de Proclus, Théologie Platonicienne, IV, 9 – Philippe Hoffmann
Le ḥadīth de la création des noms divins et son exégèse par Mullā Ṣadrā – Christian Jambet
L’image, lieu de la médiation dans les papyrus magiques grecs – Michela Zago
Sortilège nabatéen – Michel Tardieu

Thèmes principaux, Noms anciens de dieux, personnes, lieux
Auteurs modernes



Studi e testi per il Corpus dei papiri filosofici greci e latini, vol. 18

Valeria Piano


Dieci anni dopo l’editio princeps del Papiro di Derveni pubblicata in questa serie (Kouremenos / Parássoglou / Tsantsanoglou, STCPF 13), esce uno studio sulle prime colonne del papiro, conservate in maniera assai frammentaria e tuttora oggetto di ampia discussione. Si tratta di un’analisi a tutto tondo: dal contesto di ritrovamento a quello della produzione e della fruizione del testo del più antico libro pervenutoci della cultura occidentale (V-IV sec. a.C.).

(Text by the author)


Table of Contents

















Alla fine del discorso




Lux in Tenebris

The Visual and the Symbolic in Western Esotericism

Peter J. Forshaw (ed.), Leyde, Brill, 2016


The eighteen original interdisciplinary essays in Lux in Tenebris explore the alchemical, magical, kabbalistic, rosicrucian and theosophical verbal and visual symbolism in the history of Western Esotericism, from the middle ages to the present day.

(Text from the publisher)

Table of contents

Preliminary Material

Introduction: The Visual and the Symbolic in Western Esotericism

Visual and Acoustic Symbols in Gikatilla, Neoplatonic and Pythagorean Thought

Transfiguration and the Fire within: Marsilio Ficino on the Metaphysics and Psychology of Light

The Memory Theatre of Giulio Camillo: Alchemy, Rhetoric, and Deification in the Renaissance

Agrippa’s Cosmic Ladder: Building a World with Words in the De Occulta Philosophia

Imagining the Image of God: Corporeal Envisioning in the Theosophy of Jacob Böhme

Dreams and Symbols in The Chemical Wedding

The Mind’s Eye: Images of Creation and Revelation in Mystical Theology and Theosophy

Where Geometry Meets Kabbalah: Paul Yvon’s Esoteric Engravings

De Sapientia Salomonis: Emanuel Swedenborg and the Kabbalah

The Arcanes of the World. Symbols and Mystical-Allegorical Exegesis in Emanuel Swedenborg’s De Cultu et Amore Dei

Signs in the Sky: The Tobol’sk Chronicle and Celestial Divination in Russia, 1695–1734

Myth and Magic: Victorian Enoch and Historical Contexts

The Juncture of Transcendence and Concretion: Symbolique in René Schwaller de Lubicz

The Symbology of Hermeticism in the Work of Julius Evola

The Iconography of Coniunctio Oppositorum: Visual and Verbal Dialogues in Ithell Colquhoun’s Oeuvre

Modern Angels, Avant-Gardes and the Esoteric Archive

The Death of the Author and the Birth of the Luciferian Reader: Ur-images, Postmodernity and Semiotic Self-Apotheosis

Esoteric Theories of Color

Index of Names

Index of Subjects



Causes, Passions, Action



7 décembre   14h30-18h30

Riccardo CHIARADONNA (Roma 3 /Centre Léon Robin) : Les causes impassibles dans la philosophie de Plotin

Adrien LECERF (Centre Léon Robin) : Passibilité des causes dans le néoplatonisme post-plotinien

1er février 14h30-18h30

Karel THEIN (Prague) : L’intellect agent en tant que cause (Aristote, De anima  III, 5)

22 mars  14h30-18h30

Ben MORISON (Princeton, Centre Léon Robin) :Connaissance des causes et savoir éthique chez Aristote

31 mai  14h30-18h30

Carlo NATALI (Venezia Ca’ Foscari) :Les causes de la naissance et de la fin d’une amitié selon Aristote

14 juin 14h30-18h30

Giulia SISSA (UCLA/CNRS) :Pour l’amour d’un homme. La colère érotique dans le théâtre d’Euripide

Maria Michela SASSI (Pisa) : Le jeu des émotions dans l’action tragique: l’exemple de Médée

Les  séances ont lieu dans la Salle des Actes de l’Université Paris-Sorbonne


Dir. Cristina Viano

1, rue Victor Cousin 75230 Paris cedex 05 secrétariat 01 40 46 26 32 – fax 01 40 46 26 62

(Texte des organisateurs)


The Spiritual Tradition in Eastern Christianity

Ascetic Psychology, Mystical Experience, and Physical Practices

Bradford D.T., Leuven: Peeters, 2016


The Spiritual Tradition in Eastern Christianity is a comprehensive survey of the means, goals, and motivations of the ascetic life as represented in texts spanning the fourth and the nineteenth century. Contemporary examples are also included. The main themes are the dynamics of the soul, the disabling effects of the passions, mental and physical ascetism, the desirable condition of dispassion, and the experience of deification. A variety of topics are addressed, including hesychast prayer, religious weeping, the spiritual senses, dream interpretation, luminous visions, the holy ‘fool’, ascetic demonology, and pain in ascetic practice. Typical ascetic and mystical experiences are interpreted from the psychological and the neuroscientific perspective. Comparative analyses based on Sufism, Vedantic mysticism, and especially early Buddhist psychology highlight distinctive features of the Christian ascetic life. Major figures such as Evagrius Ponticus, Maximos the Confessor, Isaac the Syrian, and Symeon the New Theologian receive extensive individual consideration.

(Text from the publisher)

Table of contents


Chapter 1 – The Powers of the Soul

1.1 The Incensive Power

1.2 The Desiring Power

1.3 The Intellect

1.4 Image and Archetype

1.5 Brightly Shining Mind

Chapter 2 – The Heart

2.1 Spiritual Anatomy

2.2 Hesychast Prayer

2.3 Four Phases of Prayer

2.4 Intracorporeal Space

2.5 Posture and Respiration

2.6 Attention

2.7 Two Patterns of Autonomic Arousal

2.8 Parallels in Other Traditions

2.9 The Influence of Sufism

Chapter 3 – The Luminous Presence

3.1 Properties of the Luminous Presence

3.2 The Hesychast Controversy

3.3 Divine and Demonic Visions

3.4 Four Kinds of Luminous Visions

3.5 Focal-Extracorporeal Light

3.6 Global-Extracorporeal Light

3.7 Corporeal Light

3.8 Intracorporeal Light

3.9 A Complex Visionary Experience

3.10 Chromatic Visionary Light

3.11 Visionary Light and Divine Omnipresence

Chapter 4 0 Sleep, Dreams, and Prayer

4.1 Prayer During Sleep

4.2 Sleep Deprivation

4.3 Dream Interpretation

4.4 Visions and Revelations While Asleep

4.5 Illustration of Prayer While Dreaming

4.6 Illustration of Mystical Experience While Asleep

4.7 Dreamless Sleep and Mystical Experience

Chapter 5 – The Spiritual Senses

5.1 Spiritual Perception

5.2 Sensory Perception

5.3 One and Many

5.4 Mystical Synesthesia

5.5 Spiritual Odor

5.6 Smell and Demonic Entrapment

Chapter 6 – The Passions

6.1 Eight Dispositions

6.2 The Five Hindrances

6.3 The Constructing Activities

6.4 The Demons

6.5 Anchorite and Cenobite

6.6 Psychotherapy of the Passions

6.7 Illustration of Evagrian Psychotherapy

6.8 Demons, Delirium, and Migraine

Chapter 7 – Stillness and Dispassion

7.1 The Delicacy of Stillness

7.2 Nipsis and Attention

7.3 Nipsis and Emotion

7.4 Nipsis and Memory

7.5 The Permanence of Dispassion

7.6 A Dispassionate ‘Fool’

Chapter 8 – Acedia

8.1 Depleted Fervor

8.2 Acedia and Physical Symptoms

Chapter 9 – Pride and Vainglory

9.1 Vainglory and Social Display

9.2 Clothing and Other Possessions

9.3 Vainglory and Cognition

9.4 A Psychosis of Pride and Vainglory

Chapter 10 – Fornication

10.1 Morbid Defluxions

10.2 Intoxication and Sexual Fantasy

10.3 Fornication and Sense-Desire

Chapter 11 – Gluttony

11.1 Diverse Expressions of Gluttony

11.2 Fasting

11.3 A Syndrome of Ascetic Fasting

11.4 The Precedence of Gluttony over Fornication

11.5 The Desire for Immortality

Chapter 12 – Physical Practices

12.1 Surface and Depth Interventions

12.2 Discomfort and Pain

12.3 The Prostration

12.4 Face, Eyes, and Gaze

Chapter 13 – Evagrius on Impassioned Mental Activity

13.1 Thoughts

13.2 Illustration of Objective Perception

Chapter 14 – Images of Bodily Corruption

14.1 The Buddhist Meditation on Foulness

14.2 The Ascetic Utility of Raw Emotion

Chapter 15 – Maximos on Impassioned Mental Activity

15.1 Conceptual Images

15.2 Illustration of Objective Perception

Chapter 16 – Religious Weeping

16.1 Tears

16.2 Weeping

16.3 Isaac the Syrian on Tears

16.4 Permanent Autonomic Change

Chapter 17 – The Body in Dreams and Fantasy

17.1 The Imaginal Body

17.2 A Principle of Mental Transformation

Chapter 18 – The Deified Body

18.1 The Flesh

18.2 Weightiness

18.3 Illusory Movement

18.4 Weightiness and Cosmology

Chapter 19 – The Remembrance of Death

19.1 Fear and Love

19.2 An Imaginal Practice

19.3 The Thought of Death

19.4 Change in the Practice

19.5 An Imitation of Christ

Chapter 20 – Three Forms of Mystical Experience

20.1 Near-Absorption

20.2 The Ecstatic Vision

20.3 The Imageless Grasp

20.4 Mystical Experience in Temporal Perspective

Chapter 21 – Maximos on Dispassion and Deification

21.1 Eros

21.2 Preliminary Dispassions

21.3 Advanced Dispassions

21.4 Inhibition of Perceptual Experience

21.5 Deification



Appendix A: Sources and Terms

Appendix B: Ascetic Theologians

Appendix C: Biographical Chronology of Symeon the New Theologian

Appendix D: Visionary Mysticism in Symeon the New Theologian

Appendix E: Deification and Cognitive Inhibition in Maximos the Confessor



Refutation of All Heresies

Translated with an Introduction and Notes

M. David Litwa, Atlanta: SBL Press, 2015


The Refutation of All Heresies (ca. 225 CE) is a treasure-trove of ancient philosophy, astrology, medicine, magic, Gnostic thought, numerology, heresiography, ecclesial politics, and early Christian studies in general. Offered here for the first time in almost a century is a full English translation, along with a newly-edited Greek text, extensive notes, and a thorough introduction.

(Text from the publisher)

Table of contents 




Sigla for the Greek

Text Outline of the work

Text and Translation

Book 1

Book 2-3

Book 4

Book 5

Book 6

Book 7

Book 8

Book 9

Book 10


Ancient Sources Index

Subject Index