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The topic of Mystical Languages of Unsaying is a vital yet overlooked mode of mystical discourse, apophasis. which accurately ability "speaking away." occasionally translated as "negative theology," apophatic discourse embraces the impossibility of naming anything that's ineffable via constantly turning again upon its personal propositions and names. during this shut examine of apophasis in Greek, Christian, and Islamic texts, Michael Sells bargains a sustained, serious account of the way apophatic language works, the conventions, good judgment, and paradoxes it employs, and the dilemmas encountered in any try and study it.

This ebook comprises readings of the main carefully apophatic texts of Plotinus, John the Scot Eriugena, Ibn Arabi, Marguerite Porete, and Meister Eckhart, with comparative connection with very important apophatic writers within the Jewish culture, resembling Abraham Abulafia and Moses de Leon. Sells unearths crucial universal positive factors within the writings of those authors, regardless of their
wide-ranging modifications in period, culture, and theology.

By exhibiting how apophasis works as a method of discourse instead of as a unfavorable theology, this paintings opens a wealthy history to reevaluation. Sells demonstrates that the extra radical claims of apophatic writers—claims that critics have frequently disregarded as hyperbolic or condemned as pantheistic or nihilistic—are very important to an sufficient account of the paranormal languages of unsaying. This paintings additionally has vital implications for the connection of classical apophasis to modern languages of the unsayable. Sells demanding situations many generally circulated characterizations of apophasis between deconstructionists in addition to a couple of universal notions approximately medieval concept and gender kinfolk in medieval mysticism.

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