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THEODORE BAR KONAI CITATIONS

(CITATION 1)

He (Mani) says that before heaven and earth and all that they contain came into being, there existed two entities: one Good and the other Evil.

The Good entity dwelt in the Region of Light, and he terms him the Father of Greatness, and he says that there were dwelling there in addition to him (the Father) his five ‘shekinahs’: mind, knowledge, intellect, thought, and reflec-tion.

The Evil entity he terms the King of Darkness, and he says that he dwelt in the Land of Darkness with his five ‘aeons’: the aeon of smoke, the aeon of fire, the aeon of wind, the aeon of water, and the aeon of darkness.

He says that when the King of Darkness contemplated ascending to the Region of Light, those five shekinahs there became agitated, and he says that at that time the Father of Greatness took thought and said: ‘I will not send from my worlds any of these five shekinahs to do battle because they were created by me for tranquility and peace. Instead, I myself will go and do battle.’

(CITATION 2)

He says that the Father of Greatness evoked the Mother of Life, and the Mother of Life evoked the Primal Man, and Primal Man evoked his five sons, like a man who puts on armor for battle.

He says that an angel whose name was Nḥšbṭ went out in front of him, hold-ing in his hand a crown of victory, and he says that he spread (or shed) light before Primal Man.

When the King of Darkness saw him, he (the King) took thought and said, ‘The thing that I desired which was distant, I have discovered nearby!’ Then Primal Man gave himself and his five sons as food to the five sons of Dark-ness, just as a man who has an enemy mixes deadly poison in a cake and gives it to him.

(CITATION 3)

And he says that when they had eaten them, the reasoning power of the five luminous deities was removed, and they became like a man bitten by a rabid dog or a serpent due to the venom of the sons of Darkness.

He says that Primal Man regained his rationality and prayed seven times to the Father of Greatness, and he (the Father) evoked the Second Evocation, the Beloved of the Lights.

The Beloved of the Lights evoked the Great Ban, and the Great Ban evoked the Living Spirit.

The Living Spirit evoked his five sons: the Ornament of Splendor from his mind, the Great King of Honor from his knowledge, the Adamos of Light from his intellect, the King of Glory from his thought, and the Porter from his reflection.

They came to the Land of Darkness and found Primal Man and his five sons engulfed by Darkness.

Then the Living Spirit cried out with his voice, and the voice of the Living Spirit was like a sharp sword, and it uncovered the form of Primal Man, and he said to him: ‘Greetings to you, O Excellent One among evil entities, O Lu-minous One in the midst of Darkness, O Divine One dwelling among wrathful beasts who have no knowledge of his glory!’ Then Primal Man answered him and said: ‘Come in peace, O

bringer of the merchandise of tranquility and peace!’ And he said: ‘How do our Fathers, the sons of Light, fare in their city?’ The Caller answered him: ‘They are faring well!’ The Caller and the Respondent joined together and as-cended to the Mother of Life and the Living Spirit.

The Living Spirit clothed himself with the Caller, and the Mother of Life clothed herself with the Respondent, her beloved son, and they descended to the Land of Darkness where Primal Man and his sons were.

(CITATION 4)

Then the Living Spirit commanded three of his sons, that each should kill and should skin the archons, the sons of Darkness, and bring them to the Mother of Life.

The Mother of Life stretched out the heavens from their skins, and she made eleven heavens.

They threw down their bodies to the Land of Darkness, and they made eight earths.

And the five sons of the Living Spirit each completed their task—the Orna-ment of Splendor is the one who holds the five luminous deities by their loins, and below their loins the heavens were spread out, and the Porter is the one who bends upon one of his knees and supports the earths.

After the heavens and earths were made, the Great King of Honor took a seat in the midst of the heavens and kept watch over the whole.

(CITATION 5)

Then the Living Spirit revealed his forms to the sons of Darkness, and he strained out some light from the light that these had consumed from those five luminous deities, and made from it the sun and the moon, and from the light which remained after making these vessels he made ‘wheels’ of wind, water, and fire.

He descended and forged them near the Porter.

The King of Glory evoked and raised over them a covering so that they (the sun and moon) can ascend over those archons who are subjugated in the earths, so that they may serve the five luminous deities and not be harmed by the venom of the archons.

(CITATION 6)

He says then the Mother of Life and Primal Man and the Living Spirit rose in prayer and beseeched the Father of Greatness.

The Father of Greatness hearkened to them and evoked the Third Evocation, the Messenger.

The Messenger evoked twelve virgins with their garments, crowns, and attrib-utes—the first is majesty, the second wisdom, the third victory, the fourth per-suasion, the fifth chastity, the sixth truth, the seventh faith, the eighth pa-tience, the ninth uprightness, the tenth grace, the eleventh justice, and the twelfth light.

When the Messenger came to those vessels (sun and moon), he appointed three servants to make the vessels move.

He commanded the Great Ban to construct a new earth and three wheels for their (the vessels’) ascending.

When the vessels moved and reached the midst of heaven, the Messenger then revealed his male and female forms and became visible to all the archons, the sons of Darkness, both male and female.

At the appearance of the Messenger, who was attractive in his forms, all of the archons became excited with desire, the males for the female image and the fe-males for the male image.

Due to their lust, they began to eject the light which they had consumed from the five luminous deities. Then the sin that was in them devised a plan.

It mixed itself with the light that came forth from the archons like a portion of yeast in bread-dough, and sought to enter within the emitted light.

Then the Messenger concealed his forms, and separated the light of the five lu-minous deities from the sin that was with them, and it (the sin) fell back upon the archons from whom it had issued, but they did not receive it back, just like a man who feels loathing for his own vomit.

It (the sin) thereupon fell upon the earth, half of it upon moist ground and half of it upon dry.

(The half which fell upon moist ground) became an odious beast in the like-ness of the King of Darkness, and the Adamos of Light was sent against her and he did battle with her and defeated her, and turned her over upon her back, and struck her with a spear in her heart, and thrust his shield over her mouth, and set one of his feet upon her thighs and the other upon her breast.

That half which fell upon dry ground sprouted up into five trees.

(CITATION 7)

He says that these daughters of Darkness were previously pregnant of their own nature, and when they beheld the attractive forms of the Messenger, their embryos aborted and fell to the earth.

These ate the buds of the trees.

Then the abortions took counsel together and recalled the forms of the Mes-senger that they had seen and said: ‘Where is the forms that we saw?’ And Ašaqlūn, son of the King of Darkness, said to the abortions: ‘Give me your sons and daughters, and I will make for you a form like the one you saw.’ They brought them and gave them to him.

He ate the males, and the females he gave to Namrāēl his wife.

Namrāēl and Ašaqlūn then united together, and she became pregnant from him and gave birth to a son, naming him Adam.

She again became pregnant and bore a daughter, naming her Eve.

(CITATION 8)

He then says that Jesus the Splendor approached the unsuspecting Adam and roused him from the sleep of death so that he might be delivered from the ‘Great Spirit.’

As when one who is righteous comes across a man possessed by a strong demon and calms him by his skill, so likewise it was with Adam when the Beloved One found him prostrate in deep sleep.

He roused him, shook him, and woke him up.

He chased the deceptive demon away from him, and bound the great (female) archon apart from him. Then Adam examined himself and recognized who he was, and (Jesus) showed him the Fathers on high, and revealed to him regard-ing his own self (i.e., Jesus’s) all that into which he (i.e., Jesus) had been cast—into the teeth of leopards and the teeth of elephants, swallowed by vora-cious ones and absorbed by gulping ones, consumed by dogs, mixed and impris-oned in all that exists, and bound in the stench of Darkness.

He (Mani) says that he (Jesus) raised him (Adam) up and made him taste of the Tree of Life.

Then Adam saw and wept, and raised his voice loudly like a lion that roars and tears prey.

He cast himself down, beat his breast, and said: ‘Woe, woe to the one who formed my body, and to the one who bound my soul, and to the rebels who have enslaved me.’

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