ἀλήθειαν ἄνθρωπος in Philo ="Actualized Man" ?

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ἀλήθειαν ἄνθρωπος in Philo ="Actualized Man" ?

Post by billd89 »

Who or what is the Aletheian Anthropos (A.A.) precisely? Is 'Actualized Man' someone who has been divinized? Seen G_d? Been given mastery? Please help clarify this expression.

Hint: Adam Kadmon, Heavenly Man (the Second Son) is the Archetype.

Cases to consider:

A) Philo Judaeus, of Alexandia (c.25 AD)

1) De Gigantibus §33 might have some equivalence to §45:
καίτοι οὐκ ἀποτρέπει μόνον, ἀλλὰ καὶ παγίως ἀποφαίνεται, ὅτι ὁ πρὸς ἀλήθειαν ἄνθρωπος οὐ προσελεύσεταί ποτε ἑκὼν ταῖς φίλαις καὶ συγγενέσι σώματος ἡδοναῖς, ἀλλοτρίωσιν δὲ τὴν πρὸς αὐτὰς ἀεὶ μελετήσει.

My trans.:
"... the Actualized Man (i.e. the godly man) will not of his own volition carouse with the beloved and kin of the hedonistic body..." The earthly A.A. is a pious ascetic, a living saint. Although there are no other direct references to the A.A., the later explication of 'Heavenly Man' {Anthrōpos Ouranou} is richly suggestive of a similar or the same divinization process.

De Gigantibus §62-3:
......πρὶν μετονομασθῆναι, καλούμενος Ἀβρὰμ ἦν ἄνθρωπος οὐρανοῦ τήν τε μετάρσιον καὶ τὴν αἰθέριον φύσιν ἐρευνῶν καὶ τά τε συμβαίνοντα καὶ τὰς αἰτίας καὶ εἴ τι ἄλλο ὁμοιότροπον φιλοσοφῶν—οὗ χάριν καὶ προσρήσεως οἷς ἐπετήδευσεν ἔτυχεν οἰκείας· Ἀβρὰμ γὰρ ἑρμηνευθεὶς πατήρ ἐστι μετέωρος, ὄνομα τοῦ τὰ μετέωρα καὶ ἐ πουράνια περισκοπουμένου πάντα πάντῃ νοῦ πατρός, πατὴρ δὲ τοῦ συγκρίματυς ὁ νοῦς ἐστιν ὁ ἄχρις αἰθέρος καὶ ἔτι περαιτέρω μηκυνόμενος —· ὅταν δὲ βελτιωθεὶς μέλλῃ μετονομάζεσθαι, γίνεται ἄνθρωπος θεοῦ κατὰ τὸ χρησθὲν αὐτῷ λόγιον „ἐγώ εἰμι ὁ θεός σου· εὐαρέστει ἐναντίον ἐμοῦ, καὶ γίνου ἄμεμπτος“ (Gen. 17,1).

"......before he was renamed, called Abram 'Heavenly Man' {Anthrōpos Ouranou}, he investigated the transcendent and ethereal nature (and the contingent and the causal, and everything philosophically analogous); by Grace and the devotion that he observed, he attained intimate familiarity with these {metaphyical} subjects.

For Abraham is interpreted ‘Father Uplifted!’ {Patēr esti Meteōros}: the name of the middle-sky, the ever-lasting heavenly bodies surveyed in all directions, is called 'All-Mind of the Father' {i.e. Supreme Nous} because this Mind reaching out to the ether and further reduced to nothing is the Father of our compound being {Divine Reason + human rationality}.

But when thou art visibly improved {βελτιωθεὶς, as in 'circumcised'} to be renamed, one then becomes 'Man Born of God' {genetai Anthrōpos Theou}, according to the oracle delivered to him: 'I am thy God; be pleasing to Me, and be thou blameless.' (Genesis 17:1)"

Abraham is completed and became Heavenly Man (the Archetype) by diligent study and the Grace of God (Nous: the All-Mind) in an allegory. This is the same general process which the Uplifted Man must undergo to become the (lesser, but divinized) 'Man Born of God'. Careful study of the Cosmos (astrology? varied philosophical arts?) is required, whatever that means specifically; conceptually, this alludes to a definite esoteric system. It is not clear this is the same Mosaic cult described elsewhere, "the Sons of God." The circumcision at the end suggests a naming ritual for all initiates. (Jews would not need to be visibly improved by circumcision; that final operation would apply to uncircumcised gentile proselytes.) Perhaps it was tonsure, or a shaving for rebirth? This passage is mysterious, and the absence of Melchizedek is notable.

2) De Somniis, 1.215:
δύο γάρ, ὡς ἔοικεν, θεοῦ, ἓν μὲν ὅδε κόσμος, ἐν ᾧ καὶ ἀρχιερεὺς πρωτόγονος αὐτοῦ θεῖος λόγος, ἕτερον δὲ λογικὴ ψυχή, ἧς ἱερεὺς πρὸς ἀλήθειαν ἄνθρωπος, οὗ μίμημα αἰσθητὸν τὰς πατρίους εὐχὰς ·καὶ θυσίας ἐπιτελῶν ἐστιν, ᾧ τὸν εἰρημένον ἐπιτέτραπται χιτῶνα ἐνδύεσθαι, τοῦ παντὸς ἀντίμιμον ὄντα οὐρανοῦ, ἵνα συνιερουργῇ καὶ κόσμος ἀνθρώπῳ καὶ τῷ παντὶ ἄνθρωπος.

See Yonge's 19th C trans. of 'On Dreams' and then my own adaptation/trans.:
"Apparently there are two temples of God: one is this Cosmos, where His Own First-born Son, Divine Logos, serves as the High Priest. The other is the Rational Soul, the whose Priest is Actualized Man {ἀλήθειαν ανθρωπος: Truth-seeking, insightful man}. The perceptible copy {of the Archetype or Second Son; i.e. human Actualized Man} is not a mimic performing paternal prayers and sacrificial acts, but one allowed to put on the aforesaid tunic/mantle (exact replica of the entire Heaven), so both Cosmos with man and man with the Whole may synergistically realize a pious discernment and supra-rational accord (accomplishing sacrifices)."

If Cosmos and Psyche are equivalent domains (i.e. Adam Kadmon is 'Second Son'), then Philo's four-stage schema would draw like this:
--- God --- ____________________________ --- World-Soul ---
1. Cosmos. ____________________________1. Psyche (Rational Soul).
2. Logos. _____________________________ 2. Aletheian Anthropos (Noetic Form = Archetype; imperceptible Copy).
3. High Priest. ________________________ 3. Therapeut (Actualized Man = Teacher).
4. (Pious Religious Devotee.) ____________ 4. (Pious Theosophical Student.)

However, if Logos and Psyche are the equivalents (i.e. the faculty of Divine Mind), then Philo's four-stage schema should draw like this:
--- God --- ____________________________ --- Wisdom---
1. Cosmos. ____________________________ 1. (World-Soul)
2. Logos. _____________________________ 2. Psyche (Rational Soul).
3. High Priest. _________________________ 3a. Aletheian Anthropos (Noetic Form = Archetype; imperceptible Copy).
______________________________________ 3b. Therapeut ( = a Divinized Teacher has become 'Aletheian Anthropos').
4. (Pious Religious Devotee.) _____________ 4. (Pious Theosophical Student.)

I think what Philo means by De Somniis, 1.215 is simpler: Aletheian Anthropos is indwelling the Rational Soul, just as Logos is indwelling the Cosmos. Although these are on different levels & may lack precise symetry, the 'A.A.' (i.e. a divinized man) is able to connect to the higher plane by transcendent Similarity and through his symbolic mantle of Cosmic sympathy. Contemplating the Cosmos is the transcendent paradigm, by synthemata or symbol, here. (Comparing his other works, Philo is inconsistent interpretating the Logos-Anthropos, as scholars have noted. Perhaps contradictions are explained by different systems, or Philo's own propagandistic revisionism?)

The mundane mimic (i.e. 'religious hypocrite' or unspiritual devotee) merely performs hollow rituals, whereas (the Copy of) Aletheian Man - a holy man, call him a Therapeut? - accomplishes sacrifices through Cosmic Sympathy. Yonge and Colson's simplistic translation (συνιερουργῇ = "join") might inadvertently imply a correspondent 'shift' - that the Man-Subject removes to a different Place-Object (Cosmos as topos). From the metaphysical terminology, teleportation is NOT yet evident. The key term is synierourgē which has multiple mystical meanings, yet the translators' verb "join" doesnt convey the truth here.

συνίημι = to discern one another, to bring together, to bring to mutual understanding, to act in pious accord. Synesis is a complex mental faculty: a judgmental harmony. συνιερουργῇ = synergistically consecrating a supra-rational accord. (Also check Syneidēsis: Cosmic Consciousness.)

This is an esoteric Jewish interpretation/variant or re-conceptualization of Graeco-Egyptian ἕνωσις (Henosis* = unio mystica). So many questions arise! With such extensive reference to and exegesis of the Jacob's Ladder trope (De Somniis, 1.2-3, 1.1334-4, 1.144-7, 1.150-2), Philo seems to be allegorizing (and hereby promoting) an existent Alexandrian Jewish theurgy. He is not divulging the details, directly, but is he trying to influence these antinomian Jews? All this presupposes some kind of Judaic mystical fraternity and/or network of sympathetic synagogues which operated in the Diaspora c.25 AD. Philo's audience knew what and who he was describing, so much could be left unsaid.

Certainly, Philo hasn't created this formula of Second Temple Period Jewish anagogy (Henosis* or Hierourgia), which must be at least 50-100 yrs older (c.125 BC?). Instead, he is merely alluding to the concepts and process of a Cosmic communion practiced (in the Fayum?) by a certain kind of mystic. We also don't know Philo's theological or propagandistic motives; he is generalizing. What also remains uncertain: is this 'Psychic Priest' (Actualized Man #2: the Perceptible Copy of the Divine Form) ANOTHER PERSON - a pious/divinized Teacher or Man-Shepherd? Or is it the Holy Spirit or a Guardian Angel, a spirit-energy come upon, guiding, and moulding a man from within? Or both? The 'Cosmic Tunic' part of this passage sounds blatantly Mithraic, but other period examples prove it isn't limited; Biblical Joseph's 'coat of many colors', Adam's robe of divine glory, etc. might be variations on the trope.

In this explanation, the model reader - a potential proselyte, an outsider interested in esoteric Judaism - would be curious or already identify w/ the Theosophist (#4). A practicing Therapeut certainly wouldnt need any of this explained to them! Obviously, Philo's description pertains not to the simple, 'orthodox' (Jerusalem) Temple-oriented Jews of the left column but rather to the advanced, mystical (Alexandrian) Judaism of the right. Philo is favorably discussing (or seeking to influence?) an existent mystical tradition: it's Jewish Proto-Gnosticism c.25 AD, frankly. While carefully avoiding direct cultic references, he alludes to smthg existing in practice, already established (not smthg novel). It looks suspiciously like the psychology of Philo's so-called 'Therapeuts' in DVC! In that conclusion, I'm following the more general observations of Moritz Friedländer and Carl Jung with specific Philonic evidence here. These are the first (identified) Jewish psychologists operating around Alexandria-influenced dissident/unorthodox synagogues across the Diaspora, from c.75 BC through Philo's day. An 'Aletheian Man' possessed the equivalent of a PhD, license to practice this advanced (Jewish) psycho-spiritual 'medicine' - perhaps as an itinerant healer, across a synagogue network? At the very least, in Philo's advertisement there's a sensibility of some community-oriented mysticism.

3) Compare De Vita Mosis 2.134: “For it is necessary the Priest {Hieromenon} of the Father of the Cosmos should be supplicated for a) the perfection of the virtuous son {ἀρετὴν υἱῷ}, b) the forgiveness sins, and c) the bestowal good gifts in abundance. Perhaps also he {i.e. the High Priest} is preparing God’s Therapeut {θεοῦ θεραπευτήν} to learn the lesson {or given warning} that, even if it is not possible for him {i.e. the Therapeut} to (re-)make the Cosmos, yet it is forever worthy to endeavor for the Cosmos. For as he ought take possession of Intellect {i.e. the divine character of Nous} by copying this Blessed Paradigm in his mind, so in some way he moves anchorages {i.e. ‘change harbors’} from man's to Cosmos’ Nature, and — and speaking of Truth one may sincerely state the truth — becomes himself a microcosm.”

ἀναγκαῖον γὰρ ἦν τὸν ἱερωμένον τῷ τοῦ κόσμου πατρὶ παρακλήτῳ χρῆσθαι τελειοτάτῳ τὴν ἀρετὴν υἱῷ πρός τε ἀμνηστίαν ἁμαρτημάτων καὶ χορηγίαν ἀφθονωτάτων ἀγαθῶν. ἴσως μέντοι καὶ προδιδάσκει τὸν τοῦ θεοῦ θεραπευτήν, εἰ καὶ μὴ τοῦ κοσμοποιοῦ δυνατόν, ἀλλὰ τοῦ γε κόσμου διηνεκῶς ἄξιον εἶναι πειρᾶσθαι, οὗ τὸ μίμημα ἐνδυόμενος ὀφείλει τῇ διανοία τὸ παράδειγμα εὐθὺς ἀγαλματοφορῶν αὐτὸς τρόπον τινὰ πρὸς τὴν τοὐ κόσμου φύσιν ἐξ ἀνθρώπου μεθηρμόσθαι καί, εἰ θέμις εἰπεῖν — θέμις δὲ ἀψευδεῖν περὶ ἀληθείας λέγοντα —, βραχὺς κόσμος εἶναι.

In De Vita Mosis 2.134, (Supreme) God is ‘Father of the Cosmos’ (i.e. Nous). The ‘High-Priest of God’ approximates the Logos (and acts as a paraclete: advocate) to receive the Divinized Man’s requests and perhaps respond. The virtuous son - ‘Therapeut of God’- is God’s Man; collectively, they (Therapeutae) would be ‘Sons of God.’ Perfectioning (τελειοτάτῳ) is accomplished by Archetypal (Cosmic) Mimesis, a psychic refinement, through the Logos, but Divinized Man does not become even like unto the Logos here. Several times in this book, transportation by sailing is suggested. (Incidentally, at the end, Philo has Moses hurled upward to Heaven as shot from a crossbow {βαλβῖδος}, not downwards as by catapult.)

4) On the Rational Soul corresponding to Nous, also see DVC. 78:
"... for these men the whole of The Torah is likened unto a Living Being. They compare the literal version to its body, but for its soul is the meaning hidden under the words, upon which the sensible or Rational Soul begins to contemplate itself, as in a mirror, getting to know and be conditioned by the extraordinary sublimity of the inherent Mind: to thoroughly examine and to clarify the Symbols – to the very core of those capable of so being openly propounded, and on so seemingly trivial a cause – thus, to recognize the hidden in the visible.”

DVC. 78:
... ἅπασα γὰρ ἡ νομοθεσία δοκεῖ τοῖς ἀνδράσι τούτοις ἐοικέναι ζῴῳ καὶ σῶμα μὲν ἔχειν τὰς ῥητὰς διατάξεις, ψυχὴν δὲ τὸν ἐναποκείμενον ταῖς λέξεσιν ἀόρατον νοῦν, ἐν ᾧ ἤρξατο ἡ λογικὴ ψυχὴ διαφερόντως τὰ οἰκεῖα θεωρεῖν, ὥσπερ διὰ κατόπτρου τῶν ὀνομάτων ἐξαίσια κάλλη νοημάτων ¦ ἐμφαινόμενα κατιδοῦσα καὶ τὰ μὲν σύμβολα διαπτύξασα καὶ διακαλύψασα, γυμνὰ δὲ εἰς φῶς προαγαγοῦσα τὰ ἐνθύμια τοῖς δυναμένοις ἐκ μικρᾶς ὑπομνήσεως τὰ ἀφανῆ διὰ τῶν φανερῶν θεωρεῖν.

Quis Rerum Divinarum Haeres Sit 232: the Rational Soul is Mind, which corresponds with Cosmos by similitude.
But by nature our mind is indivisible; for the Creator, having divided the irrational part of the soul... but the rational part {of the soul}, which is called the mind He has left undivided, according to the likeness of the entire heaven.

B) Clement of Alexandria

Although he obviously borrows from Philo (below), Clement of Alexandria (c.175 AD) explains these circular synonymous terms and lineage in his Protr. 10.98.4: “For God's Image is His Logos (the True Son of Nous, Divine Logos), the Archetypal Light of light; and a copy of Logos is Aletheian Man (or Man's Nous) who is therefore said to have been made after the Image and Likeness of God.”

Clement's schema:
1. God = Nous Patrikos ________________________________________________ Nous
2. Divine Logos = God's Image/Son: True Son of Nous; Archetypal Light. _______ Nous > Logos
3a. A.A.: Man's Nous (3rd Nous: Copy of the Copy) = Archetypal Man. _________ Nous > Logos > Form
3b. (Assumed: Actualized Man = Divinized Human Being #4, made unto #3.) ___ Nous > Logos > Form > Divinized Matter
4. (Assumed: Earthly Human Being.) ____________________________________ Nous > Logos > Form > Unregenerate Matter

Clement tries to simplify and rationalize Philo's varied systems, and he errs in doing so. By implication, Clement would have the Archetypal 'Aletheian Man' as Grandson (rather than Second Son). Omitting the prototype Adam Kadmon/Heavenly Man altogether creates a number of problems, but this figure likely evolved into the Christos early on. It's dangerous theological territory! Also see the Poimandres, CH 1.8.

C) Nag Hammadi Codex
Among the NHC evidence, we know 'Rational Soul' in the human Aletheian Man also corresponds to a "divinized mind which has come into being in conformity with God's Image." (See the Teachings of Silvanus, c.150-255 AD).

* Not long after Philo's lifetime, Ignatius (c.105 AD?) was using the term 'henosis' to describe the community unified in Christ, the metaphyical ekklesia etc. In a community of faithful, another related term may be: ὁμοθυμαδόν = homothymadón ('of the same passion') describes people who share 'like precious faith,' creating a God-produced unity between them, viz. they have 'one mind', a spiritualized group consciousness.

The Aletheian Man is a Jewish mystagogue. He has been gifted (or developed, under tutelage of a Therapeut?) a divinized, higher conscience. Precisely how this happened is a mystery we should want to solve. But the small and likely eclectic community of sun-venerating Alexandrian 'Therapeuts' (some: Melchizedekians?) disappeared between 38-115 AD. Although the inception of the Jewish Hermetica is another topic, their legacy lived on... and a New Age was born!
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