Dark Night of the Soul Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. According to St. John, people who have never experienced a dark night do not understand what this feels like?

2. The author says that the first step on the ladder is similar to the way a person acts when they are in the early stage of what?

3. In Book II, Chapter XVII, who is given the knowledge of the divine?

4. The author writes that the yearning for God will leave the soul in what state?

5. What happens on the first step of the ladder, according to Book II, Chapter XIX?

Short Essay Questions

1. In Book II, Chapter XIX, what happens on the first three steps of love on the secret ladder?

2. In Book II, Chapter XVI, why does the author say that it is necessary for man to learn to walk in the darkness?

3. Why does a soul have to wear a disguise as it ascends the secret ladder?

4. How is this unification achieved with God, according to Book II, Chapter XXIV?

5. Why must the soul become numb to natural desires to receive God's strength and a union with God, according to Book II, Chapter XVI?

6. How does St. John describe the trail that God walks as He leads the soul on its journey through the darkness?

7. As discussed in Book II, Chapter XXIV, when will the soul finally find peace and rest? Why?

8. What does St. John explain about his poem, "Stanza of the Soul," in Book II, Chapter XXII?

9. How can the soul experience the presence of God while in the dark night, as described by the author in Book II, Chapter XIII?

10. What is St. John's explained purpose for writing the book Dark Night of the Soul in Book II, Chapter XXII?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

There are ten steps on the secret ladder of spirituality, as described by St. John in Dark Night of the Soul. The soul begins to climb this ladder after passing the dark night. Respond to the following questions with examples that support your answer:

1) From where does the imagery of the spiritual ladder come?

2) What are the ten steps on the ladder?

3) How does a soul reach the last step on the ladder? What does that say about the divine properties of the ladder?

Essay Topic 2

St. John describes two different types of imperfections that proficient Christians are troubled by; these must be removed during the dark night. Using examples from the text, respond to the following questions:

1) What are the two types of imperfections a proficient Christian suffers from?

2) Which imperfection is disastrous for the soul and leaves the soul open to evil influence?

3) Which imperfection can be removed from the spirit during the dark night? Why must it be removed before emerging from the dark night?

Essay Topic 3

After completely passing through the two dark nights of spirituality, a proficient Christian is at last unified with God. St. John explains that there are three properties that the soul gains as a result of passing through the purification of the dark night. Write an essay answering the following by using supporting examples from the text:

1) What are the three properties the soul gains after being purified by the dark night?

2) Do the senses or sin affect the spirit after the dark night has passed within a person's life?

3) How does a soul become transformed by these three properties? What does that mean in a Christian's relationship with God?

(see the answer keys)

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