The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse

The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse
Auteur: D.H.S Nicholson
  • Engels
  • Paperback
  • 9781408633151
  • november 2007
  • 664 pagina's
Alle productspecificaties


The Oxford Book Of English Mystical Verse - INTRODUCTION - IN the early days of English mysticism the first translation of Dionysius Mystical Theology was so readily welcomed that it is said, in a quaintly expressive phrase, to have run across England like deere. Since that time the fortunes of mysticism in these islands have been various, but, despite all the chances of repute and disrepute which it has undergone, there has been a continual undercurrent of thought by which it has been not only tolerated but welcomcd. There have been, of course, heights of enthusiasm as well as profound depths of apathy in regard to it, but even if the limitations of the greatest enthusiasm have always been evident, so also has been the continuing readiness of some portion of the religious consciousness of the people to respond to what has been most vital in it. I t is, in fact, the hypothesis of mysticism that it is not utterly without its witness in any age, even though the voice of that witness be lost in the turmoil of surrounding things. And now it appears-it has in fact been appearing for some years-that the fortunes of mysticism are mending. It has emerged from the morass of apathy which characterized the eighteenth and the greater part of the nineteenth century it is reawakening to the value of its own peculiar treasure of thought and word on all sides there are signs that it is on the verge of entering into a kingdom of such breadth and fertility as it has perhaps never known. It is as though the world were undergoing a spiritual revitalization, spurring it on to experience-even through destruction and death-a further measure of Reality and Truth. At such a time it is of interest to look backover the past and discover something of what has been already accomplished in the way of poetic expression of mystical themes and feelings. The most essential part of mysticism cannot, of course, ever pass into expression, inasmuch as it consists in an experience which is in the most literal sense ineffable. The secret of the inmost sanctuary is not in danger of profanation, since none but those who penetrate into that sanctuary can understand it, and those even who penetrate find, on passing out again, that their lips are sealed by the sheer insufficiency of language as a medium for conveying the sense of their supreme adventure. The speech of every day has no terms for what they have seen and known, and least of all can they hope for adequate expression through the phrases and apparatus of logical reasoning. In despair of moulding the stubborn stuff of prose into a form that will even approximate to their need, many of them turn, therefore, to poetry as the medium which will convey least inadequately some hint of their experience. By the rhythm and the glamour of their verse, by its peculiar quality of suggesting infinitely more than it ever says directly, by its very elasticity, they struggle to give what hints they may of the Reality that is eternally underlying all things. And it is precisely through that rhythm and that glamour and the high enchantment of their writing that some rays gleam from the Light which is supernal. The ways in which mystical experience will translate itself into such measure of expression as is possible must evidently vary, both in kind and degree, with the experience itself...



november 2007
Aantal pagina's
664 pagina's
Met illustraties


D.H.S Nicholson
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Extra groot lettertype
832 g
Verpakking breedte
140 mm
Verpakking hoogte
37 mm
Verpakking lengte
216 mm

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