Sōd: The Son of the Man

Sōd: The Son of the Man

by S. F Dunlap
Photographic reproduction of the 1861 edition with added notes and bibliography Secret Doctrine Reference Series. San Diego: Wizards Bookshelf, 1998. Paperback, [ii], xxii, [ii] + 162 pages.

Sōd is defined in The Theosophical Glossary as a Hebrew word meaning an arcanum, a religious mystery. The term was well chosen by S. F. Dunlap as the main title of his Sōd: The Son of the Man. He also wrote a sister volume, Sōd: The Mysteries of Adoni. Numerous quotations from both are to be found in H. P. Blavatsky's Isis Unveiled and The Secret Doctrine.

Dunlap appears to have been an unorthodox scholar, which is not to be taken as a criticism. He was ahead of mid nine-(tenth century theology-s-even that of the present time- in recognizing that 2,000 years ago "mystery" traditions were an important element in any number of contemporary religions and that some of these significantly influenced the development of early Christianity.

In Sōd: The Son of the Man, the author compiled an extraordinary collection of references to what he called "infant Gnosticism." Among these are eclectic quotations from the books of the Old and New Testament, the Hermetica, Greek and Latin historians and philosophers, the early Church Fathers, and many others, including later scholars. One of the most interesting of this wide range of sources is the Codex Nazaraeus, an eleventh century document with obviously earlier origins.

Dunlap commences the final chapter of this book with the statement "It is unnecessary to sum up." However, most readers would have welcomed a summary by one who was astute enough to recognize a common thread in the religious philosophies of the Mediterranean area at the commencement of the common era.