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THOMAS PATERSON BROWN (2009)
teetering over the awful unbridgeable void,
the all-but-unretraceable path of God's lightning back to God.’
—Malcom Lowry, Under the Volcano
A Brief Résumé.
1960: BA in Philosophy, Amherst College, Massachusetts (USA); honors thesis under the direction of Kai Nielsen: The Factual Status of Theism—an analysis of the logic of theological propositions, using ’Some star never burns out’ as an example of a factual proposition which cannot in principle be either verified or falsified.
1963: PhD in Philosophy, University of London (University College), dissertation under the supervision of Stuart Hampshire, with Ian Crombie1 as joint doctoral examiner: The Logic of ‘God’—an analysis of divinity as an essentially evaluative rather than a descriptive concept, with an examination of some typical criteria of specifically religious evaluation: transcendence, eternity, pan-creativity, omniscience, omnipotence, supreme moral authority. Such criteria of divinity are, importantly, essentially stipulative and therefore synthetic a priori—referencing Hans Reichenbach’s definitive analysis of metrical criteria, which have a parallel logic: The Philosophy of Space and Time.
1. ‘Professor Malcolm on Anselm's Ontological Arguments’, Analysis (England), 1961—that neither ‘everlasting’ nor ‘atemporal’ entails ‘actual’, re Anselm's proofs of the existence of God.
2. ‘Religious Morality’, Mind (England), 1963—that a morality of divine commands can be analyzed by distinguishing between (a) the defined meanings of, and (b) the stipulative criteria for, moral terms.
3. ‘St. Thomas' Doctrine of Necessary Being’, Philosophical Review (USA), 1964—that ‘necessary being’ means ‘incorruptible being’ in Aristotelian metaphysics, re the medieval Arabic and Scholastic arguments for the existence of God.
4. ‘Infinite Causal Regression’, Philosophical Review (USA), 1967—that ‘essential’ causal regressions are transitive, and logically similar to a serial attribution of legal responsibility, in the context of the medieval arguments for the existence of God.
5. ‘God and the Good’, Religious Studies (England), 1967—that the apparent paradox of salvation's presupposing an evil from which to be saved, is resolved via #2 & 6.
6. ‘Religious Morality: a Reply to Flew and Campbell’, Mind (England), 1964—that all moralities, religious or secular, necessarily employ stipulative criteria which can be explained causally but not proven either inductively or deductively.
7. ‘Logical Mysticism’, paper, annual meetings of the American Philosophical Society, St. Louis, Missouri (USA), 1968—that an infinite regress of truth-functions is impossible, as per Russell's Theory of Descriptions and Wittgenstin's Tractatus 2.0201-2.0211, and the ontological implications thereof re the transcendental Namer; unfortunately I no longer have a copy of this essay.
9. The Gospel (annotated translation from the Greek to English of the four Gospels of the New Testament, together with an eclectic version of the texts of Thomas, Philip & Truth; illustration), Santa Fe, New Mexico (USA): Christ Brotherhood, 2 editions 1976 & 1978.
10. The Gospel of Thomas (pocket edition mailed to over 20,000 convicts in US prisons; illustration), Santa Fe, New Mexico (USA): Christ Brotherhood, 1979.
11. Philosopher of the Heart: Commentary on the Gospel of Thomas, Eugene, Oregon (USA): Messianic Publishers, 1982.
12. ‘The Brotherhood Band at the Oregon State Penitentiary’, 90-minute music video, Christ Brotherhood, Eugene, Oregon (USA), 1984.
13. Baptized in Light: Commentary on the Gospel of Philip, Eugene, Oregon (USA): Messianic Publishers, 1985.
14. ‘The Sabbath and the Week in Thomas 27’, Novum Testamentum (The Netherlands), 1992—that ‘sabbath’ in Hebrew can designate either the seventh day or the entire week of seven days, re the permanent repose stipulated in Thomas 27.
15. ‘The Paul Paradox’ (Spanish ‘La Paradoja de Pablo’), unsolicited paper hand-delivered to the members of the Society of Biblical Literature at their annual meetings, Kansas City, Missouri (USA), 1992—that there are a large number of insurmountable logical contradictions between Paul and the Evangelists, repeatedly noted as well as ignored across the centuries.
16. Metagospels: Thomas & Philip & Valentine (online annotated translation from the Coptic to English), Athens: Ecumenical Coptic Project, numerous editions 1992 ff.
17. Metaevangelios: Tomás & Felipe & Valentín (traducción anotada en la Red, del #16 al castellano), Atenas: Proyecto Copto Ecuménico, ediciones numerosas 1996 en adelante.
18. Evangelios de Nag Hammadi: Tomás, Felipe, Valentín (traducción anotada del copto al castellano, con introducción por el Prof Higinio Alas Gómez), Heredia, Costa Rica: Escuela Ecuménica de la Universidad Nacional, 1998.
19. ‘The Filioque Controversy’, Athens News Sunday Edition, October 31, 1999—a short presentation in the Athens popular press regarding the Orthodox-Catholic schism of 1054 AD (the filioque controversy).
21. Online hypertext interlinear of the Gospel of Philip, 2005 (revised 2008).
23. Online hypertext interlinear of the Gospel of Thomas, 2008.
24. Metalogos: los Evangelios de Tomás, Felipe y la Verdad, Málaga, España: Editorial Sirio, 2009; ISBN 978-84-7808-677-1; en venta por Qporquo y Amazon.
1938: Born and circumcised in the Jewish Hospital, St. Louis, Missouri; baptized in the Methodist Church (with water from the Jordan River brought back by a missionary friend of Sally's); parents: Zara Lyle Brown (1903-1992; BA Kansas 1925, Bell Telephone executive, superlative ragtime pianist and baritone, outdoorsman) & Sally Hardeman Crosby (1910-1992; watercolor artist and classical pianist—as an adolescent performed privately for both Paderewski and Rachmaninov; ‘I played something for him, and then he played something for me’).
1946-57: Annual family camping trips thruout the US and Canada.
1952: Eagle Scout, Sedalia, Missouri (Henry Sutton, scoutmaster).
1955: St. Louis County half-mile record, track and field, junior division (Emil Wiggins, coach).
1956-60: Undergraduate studies, Amherst College (Massachusetts); week-end excursions to Boston folk-music coffeehouses and West Village (NYC) beatnik scene.
1958: Studies and participation in the student bus strike, University of Mexico (UNAM); travels in Mexico.
1959: Drinking too much beer in a futile attempt to placate existential student anxiety; cured by a summer excursion thru Mexico, Guatemala (including Tikal), Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia (up the Río Magdalena) and Ecuador.
1959-60: President of Beta Theta Pi fraternity, Amherst College chapter.
1960: Cowboy and ranch-hand, Currant Creek Ranch, Rock Springs, Wyoming (USA).
1960-63: Doctoral studies at University College London (with regular vital escapes to the Troubadour Coffee House); travels in England and on the Continent.
1961: Aldermaston March, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, London (England).
1963: Conscientious Objector application, denied by local military draft board in Missouri; avoided conscription by briefly continuing studies at St. Louis University and Washington University (St. Louis).
1963: Systems analyst, Pet Milk Company, St. Louis, Missouri; computer analysis of a linear transportation problem (IBM 7090, Washington University); the result more than doubled their net annual profits literally overnight!
1963: Lived on Zuñi Indian Reservation, New Mexico.
1963-67: Assistant Professor of Philosophy, State University of New York (Binghamton).
1965: Visiting Assistant Professor of Philosophy, University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA).
1966: Awakening (a dream I had in the spring of 1966).
1966: Assistant Professor, Summer Institute of Philosophy, University of Alberta, Calgary (Canada).
1967: Retired from university teaching, renouncing all possessions and social involvements, left the house carrying a guitar and three books (Wittgenstein's Tractatus, Roget's Thesaurus and the scripture anthology Bible of the World), never looked back: The Sixties!
1967: The Summer of Love, St. Mark's Place, New York City.
1967 ff: ♥Madeline and her Sisters.
1967: Camp counselor, New York City Vacation Camp for the Blind, Spring Valley, New York.
1967: October March on the Pentagon, Washington DC.
1968: Motorcycling in Missouri and across the southern route to New York.
1968: Travels in México and California.
1968-73: Intermittently hitch-hiked up and down the West Coast between Eugene and Laguna Beach; played a lot of music, smoked daily peace-pipes with many Brothers & Sisters, stayed in countless communes (the press reported there to be 10,000 in N California alone!), went to one concert, festival or spiritual pow-wow after another, demonstrated against the war, studied the Eastern Scriptures, lived completely possessionless, had very many visions, revelations and epiphanies.
1969: Began studies of the Nag Hammadi Library, via the Coptic/English edition of the Gospel of Thomas by Guillaumont et alia (Biblio.6).
1969-73: Volunteer work and in-house musician at the Odyssey Coffee House and Theater, Eugene, Oregon (founded by Bill & Cindy Wooten).
1970: Study (a dream I had in 1970).
1970-85: Helped organize Christ Brotherhood's open houses for whomsoever, with free food and lodging, bathing and clothes-washing facilities, together with outlying wilderness camps: Fifth Street House (Eugene), Washington Street House (Eugene), La Hermandad de Cristo (Santa Fe), Santa Fe Hostel (Santa Fe), Santa Fe Hospice (Santa Fe), Free Inn (Boulder), Christmas Lodge (Missoula), Casablanca (Eugene) and Christic Kibbutz (Eugene).
1970: Vortex Festival, McIver State Park, Oregon; the apex of Flower-Power and the original inspiration for the first Rainbow Gathering two years later.
1971: Lived on Warm Springs Indian Reservation, Oregon.
1972+73: Advance liaison team, first & second annual Rainbow Gatherings at Strawberry Lake, Colorado & Wind River, Wyoming; in '73 a small group of us were consequently charged in US Federal Court in Cheyenne, with (1) illegal cutting of tree limbs in the National Forest and (2) trespassing on Indian lands, the latter of which 19th century law had never previously been enforced—with a combined possible sentence of 18 months in Federal prison—but the case was graciously dismissed by Justice Alan Johnson.
1973: Lived on Wind River Indian Reservation, Wyoming; also went on a three-month solitary retreat in the wilderness, Upper Green River Lake, Wind River Mountain Range, Wyoming (that quest's revelation); studyed Adolph Knoch's exemplary analysis of the Greek New Testament (Biblio.17); climbed this mountain barefoot and found a lone eagle feather on the peak.
1976-78: Original concept (in 1976, with Tom Dolle) of a computerized clarification of the Shroud of Turin image, and subsequent presence during the extensive scientific testing of the Shroud, Turin, Italy, October 1978.2
1982-85: A lengthy series of musical concerts by the Brotherhood Band in institutions (prisons, veterans hospitals, psychiatric hospitals, orphanages and shelters for the homeless) in California, Oregon, Washington and Montana; some recordings from 1983 Brotherhood Band prison concerts are online in wma format.
1983: Helped edit the Planet Crescendo (underground newspaper), Portland, Oregon.
1983-84: Picking fir-cones, planting trees and burning slash, Oregon Coast Range.
1985-86: Residence in Spain and the Canary Islands; travels in Morocco.
1986: A series of several dozen musical concerts in the prisons and other institutions of Spain, with the Brotherhood Band.
1986-88: Travels in Israel, Sinai, Lower Egypt and Greece.
1988: After almost two decades of searching, finally obtained the all necessary resources for translating the three Coptic Gospels: Crum's dictionary, Plumley's grammar, and the Coptic texts themselves.
1990-91: Custodian at a hospital for cattle, Willamette Valley, Oregon; completed first draft of English translation of the Coptic Gospels.
1992-3: Translated the Coptic Gospels into Spanish.
1992+94: Presentations re the Nag Hammadi Library at the I & II Congresos Panamericanos de Humanidades, San José (Costa Rica) & Ciudad de Guatemala (Guatemala).
1995: Travels in Russia and the Ukraine.
1998-2000: Residence in Spain and Greece; formatted and uploaded the Metalogos website at the University of Athens Computer Center, as a guest of the Orthodox Theology Faculty; travels in Southern France and Italy.
1992-2011: Numerous extensive lecture tours, among Latin American universities and seminaries, regarding the Coptic Gospels and the Turin Shroud.
1One of his essays is on-line: ‘La posibilidad de los enunciados teológicos’, translation into Spanish of ‘The Possibility of Theological Statements’, in Basil Mitchell (ed.), Faith and Logic, London 1958.
2See Kenneth Weaver, ‘The Mystery of the Shroud’, National Geographic Magazine (June 1980); Robert K. Wilcox, ‘El Sudario de Cristo’, GeoMundo (oct ‘78); and Ian Wilson, The Shroud of Turin (2nd edition 1988). Photo of the scientific planning conference for the Shroud tests, Albuquerque, New Mexico, 1977; photo of planning session, Turin, Italy, October 1978; foto of TPB and Tom Dolle during the testing in the Royal Palace of the House of Savoy, Turin, October 1978.