Mysticism and Sacred Scripture by Steven T. Katz

By Steven T. Katz

This is often the fourth quantity in an influential sequence that provides a uncomplicated revaluation of the character of mysticism. every one offers a suite of solicited papers by means of famous specialists within the examine of faith. This new quantity will discover how the nice mystics and mystical traditions use, interpret, and reconstruct the sacred scriptures in their traditions.

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68 Fourth, the PaRDeS, the theory that there can be and are multiple levels of exegesis of scripture, makes possible radical theological innovation within the ruling normative frame of reference. Because of the larger presumptive theological context in which PaRDeS operates, radical notions can be entertained and utilized without becoming heterodox or heretical. This freedom is made possible by mystical deconstructions of the authoritative texts—that is, analyses that operate at the level of yesodei ha Torah (secrets of the Torah), of anagogy, and of batin (secrets).

Jesus' words and actions, which provide the basis for this central ritual, "This is my body. . This is my blood" (Matthew 26:26-28), are translated into symbols—not allegories—through which the believer experiences transcendence and salvation. This act is not solely or wholly, or even primarily, an act of contemplation—though it can secondarily be seen and responded to in this way, as has been recommended by many distinguished interpreters in, for example, the Eastern Orthodox Community—but is, rather, a "magical" act in which material objects that cannot be replaced are mysteriously transformed into substances that participate directly and unequivocally in the divinity of Christ.

And therefore everything which is said about the church can also be said about the Virgin, understood by both bride and mother of the bridegroom. There is a little book published by us, called Sigillum S. 61 As such, overdetermined by theological assumptions about the inspired origin of the Song—"the author of the book is the Holy Spirit"62—its absolute religious virtuosity vouchsafed by its inclusion in the biblical canon, the physical sensuality of the Song is transformed into the spiritual intimacy of Christ and human beings (Christian mystics of both sexes will read the Song in this manner).

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