Writing Styles in Medieval Mystics

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Paradox

The mystical experience is inherently paradoxical. A paradox is a statement that appears to be contradictory but which may also be true. Tauler, for example, writes of the Trinity as an "imageless image." Perhaps the most common paradox in mysticism describes the coexistence of rest and motion, or stillness and activity. The paradox describes the nature of the divine reality, which is at rest within itself but also actively contemplates itself and ceaselessly flows out from itself into the world. The person who is in union with the divine partakes of this paradoxical divine nature. Eckhart, Ruusbroec, and Tauler give the clearest descriptions of the paradox, even as they state that words cannot really capture it. As Ruusbroec puts it:

Every lover [of God] is one with God in rest and is
like God in the works of love, for God in his sublime
nature, of which we...

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This section contains 1,168 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Medieval Mystics Study Guide
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Literary Movements for Students
Medieval Mystics from Literary Movements for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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