The Cloud-authors' remaking of the Pseudo-Dionysius' mystical theology

Taylor, Cheryl (2006) The Cloud-authors' remaking of the Pseudo-Dionysius' mystical theology. Medium Aevum, 75 (2). pp. 202-218.

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Abstract

The Cloud of Unknowing and its companion texts were among the outstanding accomplishments of the flowering of English spiritual writing that occurred in the late fourteenth century. As a prelude to his final poetic evocation of contemplative fulfilment in The Cloud itself, the anonymous author formulates the paradox on which his instruction is based. Although the intellect as a spiritual faculty can know all created spiritual things, he writes, except through its failing it cannot know God, who is both spiritual and uncreated. He elucidates with a quote from the Pseudo-Dionysius' On the Divine Names: 'þe moste goodly knowyng of God is þat, þe whiche is knowyn bi vnknowyng' (125.11-12).' He then takes the opportunity to comment on this source, on citing authorities, and on intellectual presumption.

Item ID: 4154
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
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ISSN: 0025-8385
Date Deposited: 03 Nov 2009 05:13
FoR Codes: 20 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 2005 Literary Studies > 200503 British and Irish Literature @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9502 Communication > 950203 Languages and Literature @ 80%
95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9505 Understanding Past Societies > 950599 Understanding Past Societies not elsewhere classified @ 20%
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