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. Without passing through the dark night, the author says that people are still what of their natural desires and wants?

2. In Book II, Chapter XVIII, what does the secret ladder assist humans in reaching?

3. What directions can men take upon the secret ladder, as described in Book II, Chapter XVIII?

4. In Book II, Chapter XI, the soul would miss the spiritual love and affection of what if it was to go away?

5. When the souls on earth are purged, with what do they become infused, according to Book II, Chapter XII?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the author discussing in the second stanza of his poem from the prologue that is further explained in Book II, Chapter XV?

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

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

4. From where does St. John say the image of the spiritual ladder is derived?

5. How does St. John of the Cross use Mary Magdalene as an example of a soul passing through the second night of darkness?

6. What does St. John say happens on the fourth step of love of the secret ladder? Why does the soul not want favor from God?

7. How does the soul speak of being happy by using the symbolism of a house in Book II, Chapter XIV?

8. In Book II, Chapter XV, why does the soul praise the darkness that causes so much pain?

9. How does a purifying fire of love affect the souls of humans and angels in relation to a closeness with God as described by the author?

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

The light of divine illumination comes only after a soul has experienced the dark night. St. John explains divine light by referencing the rays of sunlight. Respond to the following with supporting examples:

1) What is divine light?

2) Explain how divine light acts similarly to sunlight.

3) Why does divine light only illuminate within a soul that has passed through the dark night?

Essay Topic 2

The concept of the dark night was originally expressed in St. John's poem "The Stanzas of the Soul" which he expounds upon in Dark Night of the Soul. Answer the following questions with support from the text:

1) How does "The Stanzas of the Soul" influence the way Dark Night of the Soul is written?

2) How does the imagery of the poem aid the reader in understanding Dark Night of the Soul?

3) How does the poetic imagery of the poem portray the dark night differently than the text in Dark Night of the Soul?

Essay Topic 3

The sensual, natural part of man must be put to rest for the soul to achieve unification with God's love, according to Dark Night of the Soul. Please answer the following with support from the text:

1) How does St. John compare the sensual part of a man to that of a house at rest?

2) Why is it required for a man to put the sensual part of himself to rest before being able to enter into unification with God?

3) How does the sensual part of a man make him a "prisoner"?

(see the answer keys)

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