The Bible and Beyond Monday Monthly Textual Study
Early Christian Texts Discussions
The Bible and Beyond Discussions
Monthly Monday Textual Study
Once a month, at 8:00–9:00 p.m. Eastern Time on Monday nights (generally the fourth of the month), Early Christian Texts hosts a presentation and discussion of one of the early Christian texts. Dr. Hal Taussig, who leads the sessions, shares a well-framed overview of the particular text, and gives time for all participants to ask questions or share their own insights about the meanings and potential for these texts.
There is no charge, but people are invited to donate to Early Christian Texts. One does not have to attend every session, and anyone is welcome any time. We look forward to your joining these textual studies.
Folks who need a brief introduction to these rather surprising and deeply moving texts are invited to check out several short films on the Tanho website home page. People who would like a more in-depth introduction will enjoy the book, A New New Testament: A Bible for the Twenty-First Century Combining Traditional and Newly Discovered Texts, edited by Hal Taussig and published by Houghton, Mifflin, and Harcourt.
Norea and Sophia: Female Helpers and Saviors
Norea was virtually unknown until the Nag Hammadi collection turned up a few fascinating references to her in. 1945. One is a small book or poem titled “The Thought of Norea,” which probably raises as many questions as it answers about this little known, but rather important figure from antiquity. Sophia/Wisdom is far better known during this period as a kind of helping savior figure than Norea. In fact, Sophia appears in both canonical and extracanonical works, whereas Norea is only mentioned in a few other books not included in the Bible. Sophia and Norea are never mentioned together in the texts we have access to today, but they seem strangely related. Most interestingly, they both seem to be closely connected to the divine and serve as helpers or saviors. This divine appointment is usually intended for male figures. Are we ready to welcome a female savior with the authority, wisdom, and strength we expect from a savior? Or do we still think a savior should properly be male? We will consider what it means to imagine two female saviors – Sophia and Norea – in the context of the ancient world that we know had already welcomed multiple male saviors.
Text used for this discussion:
The Thought of Norea
Available in Meyer, Marvin, ed. The Nag Hammadi Scriptures: The Revised and Updated Translation of Sacred Gnostic Texts. New York: Harper Collins, 2007.
The Tanho Center is dedicated to the study and interpretation of the large range of early Christ movement texts discovered in the last 150 years. By incorporating recently discovered texts into contemporary practices, we hope to signify exactly what tanho means in Coptic: “to make or be alive.”
Early Christian Texts: The Bible and Beyond
Exploring historical and spiritual questions about Jesus, women, salvation, healing, gender, and wholeness raised by extra-canonical books, forgotten scriptures, and so-called “gnostic” gospels.