The maiden is the daughter of light. Upon her stands and rests the majestic splendour of kings, proud and delightful is her gaze,

she is radiant with shining beauty.

Her garments are like spring flowers,

a scent of sweet fragrance is diffused from them.

On her head dwells the king,

and he feeds with his own ambrosial food those who dwell

(under) him.

Truth rests upon her head.

She expresses joy by (the movement of) her feet.

Her mouth is open, and that becomingly,

+as (with it) she sings loud songs of praise.+

Thirty and two arethose who praise her.

Her tongue is like the curtain of the door,

which is flung back by those who enter in.

+Like steps her neck mounts up+,

which the first creator created.

Her two hands make signs and point to the land of the aeons.

Her fingers open the gates of the city.

Her bridal chamber is full of light,

breathing a scent of balsam and all sweet herbs,

it gives out a sweet smell of myrrh and aromatic leaves.

Within are strewn myrtle branches.

The entrances are adorned with reeds.

Her groomsmen keep her compassed about, seven in number,

whom she herself has chosen;

and her bridesmaids are seven,

who dance in rings before her.

Twelve are they in number who serve before her

and are subject to her.

They direct their gaze towards the bridegroom,

that they may be illuminated by the sight of him.

 

And for ever shall they be with him in that eternal joy.

And they shall be at that marriage

for which the prominent men assemble,

and linger over the feast,

of which the eternal ones are accounted worthy.

And they shall put on royal robes

and be arrayed in splendid garments.

And both shall be in joy and exultation,

and they shall glorify the Father of all,

whose proud light they received.

And they have been illuminated by the gaze of their Lord,

whose ambrosial food they received,

which remains in them undiminished.

They drank too of the wine,

which stirs in them neither thirst nor desire.

They glorified and praised with the living Spirit,

the father of truth and the mother of wisdom.

 

–The Acts of Thomas

 

The above is found in the Acts of Thomas. Arguably it is based upon Syrian Wedding songs (bride and bridegroom are a royal couple, the throne is an overturned sled etc.)  This is a sacred Gnostic wedding.  We can see the allusions of ‘daughter of light’ which reinforce that this is indeed a sacred act.  The bride is of course Sophia, just like the imagery found in Exegesis of the Soul, she is decorated and waits for her twin and savior. 

 

The Hymn also promises that all who are liberated will be able to participate in the wedding feast.  There arguably are allusions to future consummations, when all have returned to their origin (cf. Irenaeus, Haer. I30,14).

 

 

“If, therefore, I do anything or think anything or say anything or know
anything that is not purely for the love of God, it cannot give me
peace, or rest, or fulfillment, or joy.”

 

–Thomas Merton

 

 

“Basic to mystic awareness is the claim that attitudinal purification is necessary for right perception. What one knows is closely related to how one knows. To see beyond the apparent, or superficial world means a change in the mechanism of apprehension.”

 

 

– F.J. Streng (in “Mysticism and Phylosophical Analysis” by S.T. Katz)

 

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