The Soul Within Me Yearns For Hayyi (The Great Life, Supreme Being) — The Ascension of the Soul in Mandaean Mysticism

Also: For Some Thoughts About Sant Mat and Gnostic Parallels, Scroll Below for, Sant Mat and Cousin Schools of Mysticism, by James Bean

“From the day when I came to love the Life [God], from the day when my heart came to love the Truth, I no longer have trust in anything in the world… After my soul alone I go searching about, which to me is worth generations and worlds. I went and found my soul — What are to me all the worlds? I went and found Truth, as she stands at the outer rim of the worlds.” (Ginza Rabba, Mandaean Gnostic Scriptures)

The Soul Within Me Yearns For Hayyi (The Great Life, Supreme Being)

’Bshumayhon ‘d Hayyi rabbi
In the name of the Great Hayyi

The soul within me yearns for Hayyi.
The soul within me demands Hayyi.
My goal is to reach the Place of Life.
I am flying, advancing until I reach the first guardian.
The servants of the first guardian came to meet me.
They said, “Let us take this man with us as our captive.
He might serve as a companion to us.”

They asked me, “Hail, companion;
Where did you come from? Where do you go?”

I came from the earth, I am going to Hayyi,
and my path is to the Place of Life.

They said, “This is the Place of Life;
here it is, so where are you going now?”

I said to myself, “I am not one of them.
If I stayed with them, I would endure every torment.
This is not what my soul desires and wants.
The soul within me yearns for Hayyi.
The soul within me demands Hayyi.
My goal is to reach the Place of Life.”

I am flying, advancing until I reach the second guardian.
The servants of the second guardian came to meet me.
They said, “Let us take this man with us as our captive.
He might serve as a companion to us.”
They asked him, “Hail, companion;
Where did you come from? Where do you go?”

I came from the earth, I am going to Hayyi,
and my path is to the Place of Life.

They said, “This is the Place of Life;
here it is, so where are you going now?”

I said to myself, “I am not one of them.
If I stayed with them, I would endure every torment.
This is not what my soul desires and wants.
The soul within me yearns for Hayyi.
The soul within me demands Hayyi.
My goal is to reach the Place of Life.”

I am flying, advancing until I reach the third guardian.
The servants of the third guardian came to meet me.
They said, “Let us take this man with us as our captive.
He might serve as a companion to us.”
They asked him, “Hail, companion;
Where did you come from? Where do you go?”

I came from the earth, I am going to Hayyi,
and my path is to the Place of Life.

They said, “This is the Place of Life;
here it is, so where are you going now?”

I said to myself, “I am not one of them.
If I stayed with them, I would endure every torment.
This is not what my soul desires and wants.
The soul within me yearns for Hayyi.
The soul within me demands Hayyi.
My goal is to reach the Place of Life.”

I am flying, advancing until I reach the fourth guardian.
The servants of the fourth guardian came to meet me.
They said, “Let us take this man with us as our captive.
He might serve as a companion to us.”
They asked him, “Hail, companion;
Where did you come from? Where do you go?”

I came from the earth, I am going to Hayyi,
and my path is to the Place of Life.

They said, “This is the Place of Life;
here it is, so where are you going now?”

I said to myself, “I am not one of them.
If I stayed with them, I would endure every torment.
This is not what my soul desires and wants.
The soul within me yearns for Hayyi.
The soul within me demands Hayyi.
My goal is to reach the Place of Life.”

I am flying, advancing until I reach the fifth guardian.
The servants of the fifth guardian came to meet me.
They said, “Let us take this man with us as our captive.
He might serve as a companion to us.”
They asked him, “Hail, companion;
Where did you come from? Where do you go?”

I came from the earth, I am going to Hayyi,
and my path is to the Place of Life.

They said, “This is the Place of Life;
here it is, so where are you going now?”

I said to myself, “I am not one of them.
If I stayed with them, I would endure every torment.
This is not what my soul desires and wants.
The soul within me yearns for Hayyi.
The soul within me demands Hayyi.
My goal is to reach the Place of Life.”

I am flying, advancing until I reach the sixth guardian.
The servants of the sixth guardian came to meet me.
They said, “Let us take this man with us as our captive.
He might serve as a companion to us.”
They asked him, “Hail, companion;
Where did you come from? Where do you go?”

I came from the earth, I am going to Hayyi,
and my path is to the Place of Life.

They said, “This is the Place of Life;
here it is, so where are you going now?”

I said to myself, “I am not one of them.
If I stayed with them, I would endure every torment.
This is not what my soul desires and wants.
The soul within me yearns for Hayyi.
The soul within me demands Hayyi.
My goal is to reach the Place of Life.”

I am flying, advancing until I reach the seventh guardian.
The servants of the seventh guardian came to meet me.
They said, “Let us take this man with us as our captive.
He might serve as a companion to us.”
They asked him, “Hail, companion;
Where did you come from? Where do you go?”

I came from the earth, I am going to Hayyi,
and my path is to the Place of Life.

They said, “This is the Place of Life;
here it is, so where are you going now?”

I said to myself, “I am not one of them.
If I stayed with them, I would endure every torment.
This is not what my soul desires and wants.
The soul within me yearns for Hayyi.
The soul within me demands Hayyi.
My goal is to reach the Place of Life.”

I am flying, advancing until I reach the House of Life.
The righteous came forward to meet me.
In thanks, I bow down and praise Hayyi.
They clothed me in radiance, covered me with light,
and numbered me among the righteous.

Soul, you must raise your lamps
to shine among the lamps of light.
The word of truth has come to you.
It came to the faithful and the righteous.

’u Hayyi zaken

— from the Left Volume of the Ginza Rabba (Mandaean Gnostic Scriptures, Codex Nasaraeus)

The Earth-realm and Then Comes the Seven Inner Realms or Heavens, and Yet None Represent the True Highest Heaven so the Soul Continues the Journey of Ascension Until It Reaches The Eighth, the Goal, the Ultimate Reality, the Real Home of The Great Life, Hayyi Rabbi.

“In the Name of the Great Life

Sublime Light be Praised”

Sant Mat and Cousin Schools of Mysticism, by James Bean

Sant Mat indeed has much in common with certain strands of Sufism, Kabbalah, Mandaeans and other expressions of Gnosticism, Platonism, even certain Christian mystics like Joseph Hazzaya, also the Hermetic philosophy of Egypt.

Andrea Diem Lane’s book, The Gnostic Mystery, remains one of the best examinations of Gnosticism and Sant Mat.

It would be wonderful if there were scholarly projects that expand this to investigating the commonalities between all these cousin schools of mystics.

Neoplatonism, Pythagoreanism and Jewish mysticism seem to be the early sources of this, the noetic heavens or higher planes, secret sacred names, initiations into the mysteries, visions, and ascension. Then eventually Syriac Christian mystics and Gnostic sects get established in Mesopotamia. Not long after, Sufism emerges in that same region. Manichaeans, Nestorians and others travel the Silk Road eastwards. Islam and Sufism become a major presence in India. While some of these meditation techniques and perceptions about the world of within might keep getting reinvented in various cultures over time — the human condition and “atman project” — I really do see actual contact, direct influence taking place between West and East. I suspect Sufism really has served as the major conduit for this East-West interface.

The Dharam Das material like the Anurag Sagar is especially “Manichaean” or Gnostic in nature. While Kabir knew of Sufis, other Sants, and Naths, it’s AS IF Dharam Das had an additional more Manichaean influence in his life, but if a biography of Dharam Das even exists to consult with, it remains an obscure untranslated inaccessible Hindi book.

According to one Mandaean glossary I have, “Ptahil” is their word for the Demiurge, an imperfect architect of the imperfect or flawed material realm, earth-realm:

“Ptahil. One of the Uthras*; as the executor of the cosmogonic designs of a group of Uthras*, most directly connected with the fashioning of this world: he is thus the Mandaean Demiurge. The name Ptah-il is that of the Egyptian artisan-god Ptah with the Semitic -il (“god”) suffixed to it. That the name for the Demiurge was taken from the Egyptian pantheon is doubtless connected with the symbolic role of Egypt as the representative of the material world.”

* “Uthra. Name for divine beings beneath the Great Mana and the First Life, comparable to the angels…”

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