GNOSTICS, by Stephen Segaller (1988)

Gnostics is a film in four parts. A drama-documentary film made by Stephen Segaller, creator/producer of The Wisdom of the Dream. Gnostics was winner of the Gold Medal for religious programs at the 31st New York International Film and Television Festival, 1988.

The knowledge of the heart which the gnostics sought went beyond dogma and faith to individual experience of spiritual realities. Long suppressed, the Gnostic pulse continued to beat until our era, when Carl Jung recognized the vital importance of its orientation and conclusions for the Self, for the feminine side of God, for the problem of evil and for the place of human beings in the cosmos.

Part One documents the new light that has been cast on the early Gnostics following the 1945 discovery, by an Egyptian peasant, of the 2000 year old Nag Hammadi manuscripts.

Author/scholar/filmmaker Stephan Segaller then focuses on the Cathars of twelfth-century southern France, who cast aside Church authority for a time and sought Gnosis in another form.

In the third film, Segaller shows hermetic philosophy, alchemy, magic, and the Gnostic attitude coming to synthesis in Renaissance Italy at the time of the Medicis, and the later impact of the myserious magician John Dee, who may have inspred Shakespeare’s Prospero. Segaller also touches upon the modern-day use of hermetic principles.

The last film deals with the Gnostic attitude towards tragedy, the appeal of Gnosticism to Jung and contemporary practitioners of Gnosticism. Featured scholars, therapists and actors include Nigel Harrison, Elaine Pagels, James Robinson, Gilles Quispel, Brian Blessed, C.A. Meier, Hans Jonas, Aniela Jaffe, June Singer, and Carl Jung.

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