Page 3, 7th March 1958

7th March 1958
Page 3
Page 3, 7th March 1958 — Fountain head of mysticism

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Fountain head of mysticism

THE DIVINE NAMES, by Dlonyalas the Areopagite. translated by the Editors of "The Shrine of Wisdom" (The Shrine of Wisdom, 10s. W.). nIONYSIUS the Areopagite, an unknown writer. now believed to be a prominent theologian of the fifth century, was at one time thought to be the Dionysius mentioned by St. Paul, and his writings acquired a semi-Scriptural authority. He was the fountain head of the main stream of mystical tradition in Europe, influencing the Vietorines, Eckhart (and through him the German mystics) and also the English school of the 14th century represented particularly by the author of the " Cloud of Unknowing." Possibly no other writer has ever gained such prestige. In the " Divine Names "-his most well known and important treatise whic,h itself is greatly affected by Neo-Platonic thought -Dionysius discusses firstly the Unity of God, what he terms the undifferentiated Godhead, altogether unknowable and incomprehensible, and secondly the differentiated or manifested Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, from Whom are his emanations or attributes to which Dionysius, following Holy Scripture, gives the names of beauty, goodness, love. wisdom, eternity life and peace. In describing each attribute or name, Dionysius discusses the relationship of the human soul and also of all creation to God. drawing a magnificent picture of the Universe, from the highest created intelligences around the throne of God, through graded ranks of angels, of men and of all sentient life. He stresses the procession of all created beings from God and their final return to God, for all have their being in Him and yearn for Him.

" Let us repeat then that all beings and all ages have their being from the Pre-subsistent. From Him are all eternity and time, and the Pre-subsistent is the Principle and Cause of all ages and times and of all beings of every time. " All things participate in Him and from nothing does He stand aloof. He is before all things and all things subsist in Him." TERESA FULLER

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