The question of the 'structure' of the human person is central to many mystical authors in the Christian tradition. This book focuses on the specific anthropology of a series of key authors in the mystical tradition in the medieval and early modern Low Countries. Their view is fundamentally different from the anthropology that has commonly been accepted since the rise of Modernity. This book explores the most important mystical authors and texts from the Low Countries including: William of Saint-Thierry, Hadewijch, Pseudo-Hadewijch, John of Ruusbroec, Jan van Leeuwen, Hendrik Herp, and the Arnhem Mystical Sermons. The most important aspects of mystical anthropology are discussed: the spiritual nature of the soul, the inner-most being of the soul, the faculties, the senses, and crucial metaphors which were used to explain the relationship of God and the human person. Two contributions explicitly connect the anthropology of the mystics to contemporary thought. This book offers a solid and yet accessible overview for those interested in theology, philosophy, history, and medieval literature.
About the Author
John Arblaster is a doctoral student at the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies, KU Leuven and the Ruusbroec Institute, University of Antwerp. His research focuses on the doctrine of deification in the late-medieval West, and particularly on authors from the Low Countries. He has published several articles on these authors as well as the English translation of the poems of Pseudo-Hadewijch. He co-edited Brill's Companion to John of Ruusbroec with Rob Faesen.Rob Faesen is Professor of Church History at the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies, KU Leuven and at Tilburg University, and is a member of the Ruusbroec Institute, University of Antwerp. He is an expert in the history of late medieval mystical literature, and has published extensively in this field. He was on the editorial board of the critical edition of Ruusbroec's Opera omnia.