By Peter Chong-Beng Gan
This booklet represents a research of Evelyn Underhill’s finest paintings on mysticism, utilizing Hegel’s dialectics and Kant’s idea of the chic as interpretive instruments. It in particular specializes in favorite beneficial properties of Underhill’s textual content: the outline of the magical existence as one permeated by means of an severe love among the mystic and endless truth, and the precise delineation of levels of mystical improvement. Given those beneficial properties, the textual content lends itself to a development of a worthy discourse predicated on dialecticism, sublimity, and mysticism. The e-book additionally articulates a few insights into the content material and nature of the writings of Christian mystics.
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Additional info for Dialectics and the Sublime in Underhill's Mysticism
In fact, in the twelfth edition, 19 years after the publication of the first edition, and even in the wake of vitalism’s decline, she still retains her chapter that is titled “Mysticism and Vitalism”, although she ends it with a note admitting that if she were to write the book for the first time, she would probably have shifted her reliance upon vitalism to the framework of critical realism (M p. 43). Baron Friedrich von Hügel’s (1852–1925) construction of critical realism had an impact on Underhill, and it was responsible for this shift in her theoretical affiliation (Greene 1988, p.
Aside from Eckhart, and Mondello’s John of the Cross, we can gain further insights into the various permutations of being and becoming pertinent to mysticism by turning to Underhill. Underhill uses “being” to refer to the transcendent order of reality that is eternal and unchanging. 11 This division of orders is consistent 11 See M pp. 35, 37, 41, 54, and 65. In this present book, for the purposes of crisp presentation and the avoidance of confusing the reader, I am going to dispense with using the uppercase for those terms.
Even with the blending of emotions, I would think that there is still the unity of dynamic becoming into a state of being. Furthermore, while a consolidated state of being (say, of anger) is mediated by its preceding becoming, one can also imagine that within this mediating becoming, there are other consolidations into component beings (say, fear or sadness, which tinges the dominant state of anger; or an independent consolidation that sets off a conditioning line towards other consolidated states).
Dialectics and the Sublime in Underhill's Mysticism by Peter Chong-Beng Gan