absolute creation, a theory that matter and evil are due to something negative or positive outside of God. Dualism is a theory of origins, not of results. Keeping this in mind, we may call the Alexandrian Gnostics dualists, while we regard emanation as the characteristic teaching of the Syrian Gnostics. These latter made matter to be only an efflux from God and evil only a degenerate form of good. If the Syrians held the world to be independent of God, this independence was conceived of only as a later result or product, not as an original fact. Some like Saturninus and Bardesanes verged toward Manich^an doctrine; others like Tatian and Marcion toward Egyptian dualism; but all held to emanation as the philosophical explanation of what the Scriptures call creation. These remarks will serve as qualification and criticism of the opinions, which we proceed to quote.
Sheldon, Ch. Hist., 1:200 ? ?The Syrians were in general more dualistic than the Alexandrians. Some, after the fashion of the Hindu pantheists, regarded the material realm as the region of emptiness and illusion ? the void opposite of the Pleroma which is that world of spiritual reality and fullness; others assigned a more positive nature to the material and regarded it as capable of an evil aggressiveness even apart from any ?quickening by the incoming of life from above.? Mansel, Gnostic Heresies, 139 ? ?Like Saturninus, Bardesanes is said to have combined the doctrine of the malignity of matter with that of an active principle of evil and he connected together these two usually antagonistic theories. By maintaining that the inert matter was co-eternal with God, while Satan as the active principle of evil was produced from matter (or, according to another statement, co-eternal with it), and acted in conjunction with it. 142 ? The feature which is usually selected as characteristic of the Syrian Gnosis is the doctrine of dualism; that is to say, the assumption of the existence of two active and independent principles, the one of good, the other of evil. Saturninus and Bardesanes distinctly held this assumption in contradiction to the Platonic theory of an inert semi-existent matter, which was adopted by the Gnosis of Egypt. The former principle found its logical development in the next century in Manicheism; the latter leads with almost equal certainty to Pantheism.?
A.H. Newman, Ch. History, 1:192 ? ?Marcion did not speculate as to the origin of evil. The Demiurge and his kingdom are apparently regarded as existing from eternity. Matter he regarded as intrinsically evil, and he practiced a rigid asceticism.? Mansel, Gnostic Heresies, 210 ? ?Marcion did not, with the majority of the Gnostics, regard the Demiurge as a derived and dependent being, whose imperfection is due to his remoteness from the highest Cause; nor yet, according to the Persian doctrine, did he
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