Sunday, December 31, 2006

Ancient Documents Recently Discovered Starts Jan 3

January 3: Betty Adam gives background for the course in an introductory lecture on recently discovered documents:
1. 1896 discovery of Secret Book of John, the Sophia of Jesus Christ, the Gospel of Mary, and Acts of Peter (the Berlin Codex)
2. 1945 discovery of 13 codices at the Nag Hammadi in Egypt.
3. 1947 discovery in Qumran environs of Dead Sea Scrolls
4. 2001 discovery of the Gospel of Judas (Codex Tchacos)

January 10: April DeConick explores in detail what the Gospel of Judas REALLY says!
In recent interpretations by Bart D. Ehrman and Marvin Meyer ---as revealed in the National Geographic television documentary and book --- Judas is the hero of the newly discovered The Gospel of Judas and the only disciple who can enter the divine realm. Dr. DeConick rejects this interpretation in this blockbuster lecture in which she details what the Gospel of Judas REALLY says. The truth is that in this Gospel Judas is no friend of Jesus and certainly is no hero or saint.

This class will be in The Jeffers Conference Room at Christ Church Cathedral, 1117 Texas Ave. at 7pm.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Visit to Sufi Meeting House January 6th

A visit to a Sufi Meeting house to hear teacher Molana Salaheddin Ali Nader Shah Angha, Pir Oveyssi starting at 6:30 pm. It is best to arrive at 6:15 since the teaching begins immediately at 6:30pm.

The Magdalene Community will go to a nearby Persian restaurant following the teaching.

PLease RSVP so the earphones for translation can be supplied in advance and dinner reservations can be made.

5645 Hillcroft Suite 109 Houston,TX 77036

A map will be supplied.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Study and Meditation Group 2007

An ongoing small group that convenes for meditation, prayer and study of the recently discovered manuscript The Gospel of Mary and continues to envision a contemporary Magdalene Community. The group will meet on the first and third Fridays from Noon until 1pm beginning in 2007 at the Brigid's Place Meeting Room in the McGehee Building at Christ Church Cathedral. Free parking is available in the new garage on San Jacinto.

Wednesday, December 6, 2006


Sufism Leaflet

Voices of the Magdalene Community

Just for a moment let me take you into this contemporary community to hear some of our voices talk about what we're looking for-and what we've found.

"What is it about the Magdalene that attracts you in the first place? Why did she draw you in? Is it Mary, or is it something else?"

"It's the message, more than the messenger--the mesage from the Teacher about the Human One. I think I am changing. The traditional Gospels seem more about proving a fact. The Gospel of Mary is more about love and mystery."

"It the justice and the calm. When I hear the words 'Peace be with you. Acquire my Peace within you," I stretch out my arms in an enfolding gesture and I feel the peace."

"It's the interconnectedness of all things that gets me. I have been reading about that and here in the Gospel of Mary we find this idea--it's the first idea that surfaces in the Gospel--the disciples ask Jesus about matter--if matter will be utterly destroyed or not. Then they ask him about sin. What is sin? The answer to the first is that all the elements of nature are interwoven and united with each other. The answer to the second goes right through you for the Teacher says there is no sin in any original sense, it's what we do to one another that generates the sin. That's not the message you get in the church!"

"It's the Magdalene herself that draws me in. She is very real for me. She was a person--not a symbol or representative. She was the authentic voice of Christ. That's why we come here- to hear what that voice is, without all the church stuff. To me she is very real."

"But the church shut it down, but why?"

"That's a long and old story of divisions rather than connections."

"I love that her Gospel starts off with the question of matter--do we matter? It's a different take on that word, but what she has done for us is to say we do matter--that's part of that attraction for me."

"I think she was a historical person. I don't even want to start doubting that. Then I have no place to start."

"What she got was never going to pay for buildings and Cathedrals and gold trimmed robes."

"What Jesus taught wasn't going to do othat either."

"What they got was the original good."

"And it all comes from love--you don't need all these rules if you come from love."

"I think that divinity is in all of us--when we explore other religions, we find that. We are always looking for a connection with a higher being but it has to be somewhere in there to start the looking."

"I get so much out of these studies and then the conversation in our Sunday services. To me that's enough right now. I am on a path inweard, so I can go out."

"To me it is so much more than what I've been getting I can't conceive of more."

"There may be more, but this is enough."

"Perhaps we have found the Grail of True Humanness!"

Friday, December 1, 2006

Hello World

Hello World!

I want to tell you what we are doing in Houston at the interfaith Rothko Chapel. We’re developing a Magdalene Community that is seeking conversations with other spiritualities and religious traditions. Our newly formed community, which is composed of both men and women, is NOT evangelistic—we are NOT interested in “converting” anyone to our way of seeing and thinking. While we have formed a community to honor a Biblical visionary and apostle, Mary Magdalene, we are NOT about persuading you to our Way. What we are about is sharing the peace, the peace we have come to speak of as a “true humanness” and a “spark of divinity” that dwells within each of us. (We have learned to speak in this way from a once forgotten ancient manuscript written in the early second century in honor of Mary Magdalene.) What we are about is making connections with you and hearing about YOUR WAY to the shared peace. What we are about is opening out our hearts in love to conversations throughout the world.

Our contemporary Magdalene Community is dedicated to moving beyond the divisive and divisional thinking that continues to plague our world. We have found in this ancient fragmented manuscript a saving word whose time has come. Four disciples, Peter, Andrew, Levi, and Mary Magdalene, have a visionary experience in which they hear their Blessed One Jesus saying:

“Peace be with you!
Acquire my peace within yourselves!

Be on your guard so that no one deceives you by saying,
‘Look over here!’ or ‘Look over there!’ For the child of
true humanity exists within you.

Follow it! Those who search for it will find it.”

(translation by Karen King, see page 138 of The Magdalene Mystique)

Powerful words to be unpacked. We want you to help us in the unpacking. We ask, what does this offer of peace mean to us today? How can we speak of a peace that exists within ourselves? And, what does it mean to say that a true humanity exists within us. This is what my first post wants to be about: unpacking this incredible word found in a lost manuscript dated probably to the early second century CE.

Those of you have had a chance to read The Magdalene Mystique may remember the story of my friend Zari who took me to her Sufi meeting house to hear the teacher. It was at the meeting house that I first began to understand that many of us throughout the world are interested in becoming the peace. On the night of my visit, the Sufi teacher Salaheddin Ali Nader Shah Anglha brought together the teachings of Islam and the teachings of Jesus in speaking of the fundamental principle of Erfan, known in the West as Sufism: I quote below from his book Peace (page 6,20) to open up a conversation with you.

“Unless a subject is completely known, its benefits and, ultimately, the necessity to make effective plans for its fulfillment, [it] will never be implemented. With regard to peace, then, if the most eloquent words and ideas are presented to the public solely through speeches, books and declarations, peace will not be known. These exercises only provoke their audiences to entertain an imaginary hope for peace, in a possible state of euphoria, with the promulgators most likely achieving acknowledgment and honor. But it will not be long before both audience and advocate become disillusioned.. The Holy Prophet Jesus (peace be unto him) has said in his teachings to his disciples: Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth, give I unto you (John 14:27). The essence of these words, which are among the fundamental teachings of Erfan, declare that the world does not have peace, and therefore cannot impart peace. The true meaning of peace refers to the inner freedom and spiritual elevation of every individual. Only by spreading the teaching of such principles may peace reign.”

In our contemporary Magdalene Community we want to know completely the meaning of peace and to feel the inner freedom and spiritual elevation within ourselves. Perhaps then we can impart the shared peace. I await to hear from you.