„The visionary is a mystic when his vision mediates to him an actuality beyond the reach of the senses. The philosopher is a mystic when he passes beyond thought to the pure apprehension of truth. The active man is a mystic when he knows his actions to be part of a greater activity.“

—  Evelyn Underhill, buch Practical Mysticism

Quelle: Practical Mysticism (1914), Chapter I, What Is Mysticism?, p. 28

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Evelyn Underhill Foto
Evelyn Underhill1
englische Autorin, Mystikerin und Theologin 1875 - 1941

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Isaac Newton Foto

„When a man is taken in a mystical sense, his qualities are often signified by his actions“

—  Isaac Newton British physicist and mathematician and founder of modern classical physics 1643 - 1727

Vol. I, Ch. 2: Of the Prophetic Language
Observations upon the Prophecies of Daniel, and the Apocalypse of St. John (1733)
Kontext: When a man is taken in a mystical sense, his qualities are often signified by his actions, and by the circumstances of things about him. So a Ruler is signified by his riding on a beast; a Warrior and Conqueror, by his having a sword and bow; a potent man, by his gigantic stature; a Judge, by weights and measures... the affliction or persecution which a people suffers in laboring to bring forth a new kingdom, by the pain of a woman in labor to bring forth a man-child; the dissolution of a body politic or ecclesiastic, by the death of a man or beast; and the revival of a dissolved dominion, by the resurrection of the dead.

Pope Francis Foto
Gershom Scholem Foto

„We shall start from the assumption that a mystic, insofar as he participates actively in the religious life of a community, does not act in the void.“

—  Gershom Scholem German-born Israeli philosopher and historian 1897 - 1982

Quelle: On the Kabbalah and Its Symbolism (1960), Ch. 1 : Religious Authority and Mysticism
Kontext: We shall start from the assumption that a mystic, insofar as he participates actively in the religious life of a community, does not act in the void. It is sometimes said, to be sure, that mystics, with their personal striving for transcendence, live outside of and above the historical level, that their experience is unrelated to historical experience. Some admire this ahistorical orientation, others condemn it as a fundamental weakness of mys­ticism. Be that as it may, what is of interest to the history of reli­gions is the mystic's impact on the historical world, his conflict with the religious life of his day and with his community. No his­torian can say — nor is it his business to answer such questions­ whether a given mystic in the course of his individual religious experience actually found what he was so eagerly looking for. What concerns us here is not the mystic's inner fulfillment. But if we wish to understand the specific tension that often prevailed between mysticism and religious authority, we shall do well to recall certain basic facts concerning mysticism.
A mystic is a man who has been favored with an immediate, and to him real, experience of the divine, of ultimate reality, or who at least strives to attain such experience. His experience may come to him through sudden illumination, or it may be the result of long and often elaborate preparations. From a historical point of view, the mystical quest for the divine takes place almost exclusively wit a prescribed tradition-the exceptions seem to be limited to modern times, with their dissolution of all traditional ties. Where such a tradition prevails, a religious authority, established long before the mystic was born, has been recognized by the com­ munity for many generations.

Jacob Bronowski Foto
Jim Morrison Foto
Maria Montessori Foto

„There exists, then, the "spirit" of the scientist, a thing far above his mere "mechanical skill," and the scientist is at the height of his achievement when the spirit has triumphed over the mechanism. When he has reached this point, science will receive from him not only new revelations of nature, but philosophic syntheses of pure thought.“

—  Maria Montessori Italian pedagogue, philosopher and physician 1870 - 1952

Quelle: The Montessori Method (1912), Ch. 1 : A Critical Consideration of the New Pedagogy in its Relation to Modern Science, p. 8.
Kontext: We give the name scientist to the type of man who has felt experiment to be a means guiding him to search out the deep truth of life, to lift a veil from its fascinating secrets, and who, in this pursuit, has felt arising within him a love for the mysteries of nature, so passionate as to annihilate the thought of himself. The scientist is not the clever manipulator of instruments, he is the worshipper of nature and he bears the external symbols of his passion as does the follower of some religious order. To this body of real scientists belong those who, forgetting, like the Trappists of the Middle Ages, the world about them, live only in the laboratory, careless often in matters of food and dress because they no longer think of themselves; those who, through years of unwearied use of the microscope, become blind; those who in their scientific ardour inoculate themselves with tuberculosis germs; those who handle the excrement of cholera patients in their eagerness to learn the vehicle through which the diseases are transmitted; and those who, knowing that a certain chemical preparation may be an explosive, still persist in testing their theories at the risk of their lives. This is the spirit of the men of science, to whom nature freely reveals her secrets, crowning their labours with the glory of discovery.
There exists, then, the "spirit" of the scientist, a thing far above his mere "mechanical skill," and the scientist is at the height of his achievement when the spirit has triumphed over the mechanism. When he has reached this point, science will receive from him not only new revelations of nature, but philosophic syntheses of pure thought.

George Steiner Foto

„What lies beyond man's word is eloquent of God. That is the joyously defeated recognition expressed in the poems of St. John of the Cross and of the mystic tradition.“

—  George Steiner American writer 1929 - 2020

"Silence and the Poet" (1966).
Language and Silence: Essays 1958-1966 (1967)

Caterina Davinio Foto
Thomas Aquinas Foto

„Man reaches the highest point of his knowledge about God when he knows that he knows him not, inasmuch as he knows that that which is God transcends whatsoever he conceives of him.“

—  Thomas Aquinas Italian Dominican scholastic philosopher of the Roman Catholic Church 1225 - 1274

Quelle: De potentia (c. 1265–1266) q. 7, art. 5, ad 14

„To explain their occult and mystical experiences, magicians are forced to develop models beyond the scope of materialistic or religious systems.“

—  Peter J. Carroll British occultist 1953

Quelle: Liber Null & Psychonaut (1987), p. 151
Kontext: Physical processes alone will never completely explain the existence of the universe, life, and consciousness. Religious answers are just wishful thinking and wanton fabrication cast over a bottomless pit of ignorance. To explain their occult and mystical experiences, magicians are forced to develop models beyond the scope of materialistic or religious systems.

John Steinbeck Foto

„In a modern scene, when the horizons stretch out and your philosopher is likely to fall off the world like a Dark Age mariner, he can save himself by establishing a taboo-box which he may call "mysticism" or "supernaturalism" or "radicalism." Into this box he can throw all those thoughts which frighten him and thus be safe from them.“

—  John Steinbeck, buch The Log from the Sea of Cortez

Quelle: The Log from the Sea of Cortez (1951), Chapter 8
Kontext: Among primitives sometimes evil is escaped by never mentioning the name, as in Malaysia, where one never mentions a tiger by name for fear of calling him. Among others, as even among ourselves, the giving of a name establishes a familiarity which renders the thing impotent. It is interesting to see how some scientists and philosophers, who are an emotional and fearful group, are able to protect themselves against fear. In a modern scene, when the horizons stretch out and your philosopher is likely to fall off the world like a Dark Age mariner, he can save himself by establishing a taboo-box which he may call "mysticism" or "supernaturalism" or "radicalism." Into this box he can throw all those thoughts which frighten him and thus be safe from them.

George Orwell Foto
G. K. Chesterton Foto

„A mystic is a man who separates heaven and earth even if he enjoys them both.“

—  G. K. Chesterton, buch William Blake

"William Blake" (1920)

Nyanaponika Thera Foto
Dietrich Bonhoeffer Foto
Joan Robinson Foto

„There is an unearthly, mystical element in Friedman's thought.“

—  Joan Robinson English economist 1903 - 1983

The mere existence of a stock of money somehow promotes expenditure. But insofar as he offers an intelligible theory, it is made up of elements borrowed from Keynes.
Quelle: Economic Heresies (1971), Chapter VI, Prices and Money, p. 87

Johann Gottlieb Fichte Foto

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