Tuesday, September 11, 2007

FIRST THINGS: A Journal of Religion, Culture, and Public Life:
In the history of Christian theology and spirituality, there have been many accounts of divine darkness, with a host of different implications. It is an ancient doctrine, emphasized by apophatic theologians and mystics, that God dwells in inaccessible light, a light so searingly absolute that it cancels out all images and ideas we may form of Him, veiling the divine glory in a dark “cloud of unknowing.” This tradition owes much to the Christian Neoplatonist Dionysius the Pseudo-Areopagite and his liturgically inspired vision of ascent to the divine throne; as such, it says more about divine transcendence than about human desolation.

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