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. What happens when the soul has a more complete purging, according to the author?

2. For whom is the ninth step on the ladder reserved, according to Book II, Chapter XX?

3. According to Book II, Chapter XIV, why does the soul speak these lines: "I went forth without being observed / My house being now at rest"?

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

5. What stanza from "Stanzas of the Soul" is featured in Book II, Chapter XXV?

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. Why is the experience of the dark night and the spiritual ladder called "secret," as explained by the author?

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

4. 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?

5. How can a soul reach the final step on the secret ladder? What happens on this step?

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

7. In Book II, Chapter XVIII, how does the soul move upon the spiritual ladder?

8. In Book II, Chapter XXIII, what does the devil know about what is happening to a soul during the dark night and what does the devil do about it?

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

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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 2

There is a separation between the will and the emotions within a person. St. John describes this separation as the reason why the soul can journey through the dark night. Respond with supporting examples:

1) How is the will free from emotions within a human?

2) Why does the soul recognize what it needs and the will of a person does not?

3) How is the separation of the will and the emotions required for a person to pass through the dark night?

Essay Topic 3

The use of analogies within Dark Night of the Soul is abundant. St. John often re-describes his explanations by comparing the experience with an analogy. By using support from the text, respond with an essay to the following:

1) Name and define at least three analogies used within Dark Night of the Soul.

2) What is the author's purpose in using analogies within his writing? What does the reader gain from reading the analogies?

(see the answer keys)

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