The Grey Falcon, Hamza Malik offers an account of the life and teaching of the twelfth century scholar and Sufi of Baghdad, and eponym of the Qadiri order, Shaykh ʿAbd al-Qādir al-Jīlānī (1077-1166). The question of whether Jīlānī was a Sufi, or simply a scholar appropriated by later Sufis as has been sometimes suggested, is tackled through an analysis of his three most popular works, the
Ghunya li Ṭālibī Ṭarīq al-Ḥaqq, the
Futūḥ al-Ghayb, and the
Fatḥ al-Rabbānī. Malik identifies and presents Jīlānī’s Sufi thought and theological stance, and furthermore attempts to paint a picture of the character and personality of Jīlānī, as might be ascertained solely from the works analysed.
Joachim of Fiore (c.1135-1202) remains one of the most fascinating and enigmatic figures of medieval Christianity. In his own time, he was an influential advisor to the mighty and powerful, widely respected for his prophetic exegesis and decoding of the apocalypse. In modern times, many thinkers, from Thomas Müntzer to Friedrich Engels, have hailed him as a prophet of progress and revolution. Even present-day theologians, philosophers and novelists were inspired by Joachim’s vision of a Third Age of the Holy Spirit.
However, at no time was Joachim an uncontroversial figure. Soon after his death, the church authorities became suspicious about the explosive potential of his theology, while more recently historians held him accountable for the fateful progressivism of Western Civilization.
Contributors are: Frances Andrews, Valeria De Fraja, Alfredo Gatto, Peter Gemeinhardt, Sven Grosse, Massimo Iiritano, Bernard McGinn, Matthias Riedl, and Brett Edward Whalen.
Gerard of Abbeville (d. 1272) was the foremost secular theologian at the University of Paris during the third quarter of the thirteenth century. Significantly, Gerard’s corpus includes the most comprehensive treatment of the nature and extent of human knowledge from the generation before Henry of Ghent.
Stephen M. Metzger’s study presents Gerard’s complete theory of human knowledge, which is a hierarchy extending from the knowledge acquired in faith, through scientific thought and culminating in the full vision of God by the blessed in patria. It is the fullest exposition of the life, works and thought of Gerard yet written and is augmented by the presentation for the first time of editions of several disputed questions and other texts.
Lux in Tenebris is a collection of eighteen original interdisciplinary essays that address aspects of the verbal and visual symbolism in the works of significant figures in the history of Western Esotericism, covering such themes as alchemy, magic, kabbalah, angels, occult philosophy, Platonism, Rosicrucianism, and Theosophy. Part I: Middle Ages & Early Modernity ranges from Gikatilla, Ficino, Camillo, Agrippa, Weigel, Böhme, Yvon, and Swedenborg, to celestial divination in Russia. Part II: Modernity & Postmodernity moves from occultist thinkers Schwaller de Lubicz and Evola to esotericism in literature, art, and cinema, in the works of Colquhoun, Degouve de Nuncques, Bruskin, Doitschinoff, and Pérez-Reverte, with an essay on esoteric theories of colour.
Contributors are: Michael J.B. Allen, Susanna Åkerman, Lina Bolzoni, Aaron Cheak, Robert Collis, Francesca M. Crasta, Per Faxneld, Laura Follesa, Victoria Ferentinou, Joshua Gentzke, Joscelyn Godwin, Hans Thomas Hakl, Theodor Harmsen, Elke Morlok, Noel Putnik, Jonathan Schorsch, György Szönyi, Carsten Wilke, and Thomas Willard.
The Song of Songs was one of the most frequently interpreted biblical books of the Middle Ages. Most scholarly studies concentrate on monastic interpretations of the text, which tend to be contemplative in nature. In
Out of the Cloister, Suzanne LaVere reveals a particularly scholastic strain of Song of Songs exegesis, in which cathedral school masters and mendicants in and around 12th and 13th-century Paris read the text as Christ exhorting the Church and clergy to lead an active life of preaching, instruction, conversion, and reform. This new interpretation of the Song of Songs both reflected and influenced an era of far-reaching Church reform and offered a program for secular clergy to combat heresy and apathy among the laity.
The last twenty-five years have seen an explosion of scholarly studies on lollardy, the late medieval religious phenomenon that has often been credited with inspiring the English Reformation. In A Companion to Lollardy, Patrick Hornbeck sums up what we know about lollardy and what have been its fortunes in the hands of its most recent chroniclers. This volume describes trends in the study of lollardy and explores the many individuals, practices, texts, and beliefs that have been called lollard.
Joined by Mishtooni Bose and Fiona Somerset, Hornbeck assesses how scholars and polemicists, literary critics and ecclesiastics have defined lollardy and evaluated its significance, showing how lollardy has served as a window on religion, culture, and society in late medieval England.
This volume collects twelve chapters that present the multifaceted responses to the works of the William of Ockham in Oxford, Paris, Italy, and at the papal court in Avignon in the 14th century, and it assembles contributions on philosophers and theologians who all have criticized Ockham’s works at different points. In individual case studies it gives an exemplary overview over the reactions the Venerable Inceptor has provoked and also serves to better understand Ockham’s thought in its historical context. The topics range from ontology, psychology, theory of cognition, epistemology, and natural science to ethics and political philosophy. This volume demonstrates that the reactions to Ockham’s philosophy and theology were manifold, but one particular kind of reception is missing: unanimous approval.
Contributors include Fabrizio Amerini, Stephen F. Brown, Nathaniel Bulthuis, Stefano Caroti, Laurent Cesalli, Alessandro D. Conti, Thomas Dewender, Isabel Iribarren, Isabelle Mandrella, Aurélien Robert, Christian Rode, and Sonja Schierbaum
This volume deals with the transformative force of Observant reforms during the long fifteenth century, and with the massive literary output by Observant religious, a token of a profound pastoral professionalization that provided religious and lay people alike with encompassing models of religious perfection, as well as with new tools to shape their religious identity. The essays in this work contend that these models and tools had an ongoing effect far into the sixteenth century (on all sides of the emerging confessional divide). At the same time, the controversies surrounding Observant reforms resulted in new sensibilities with regard to religious practices and religious nomenclature, which would fuel many of the early sixteenth-century controversies.
Contributors are Michele Camaioni, Anna Campbell, Fabrizio Conti, Anna Dlabačová, Sylvie Duval, Koen Goudriaan, Emily Michelson, Alison More, Bert Roest, Anne Thayer, Johanneke Uphoff, Alessandro Vanoli, Ludovic Viallet, and Martina Wehrli-Johns.
A Companion to Priesthood and Holy Orders in the Middle Ages, a select group of scholars explain the rise and function of priests and deacons in the Middle Ages. Though priests were sometimes viewed through the lens of function, the medieval priesthood was also defined ontologically–those marked by God who performed the sacraments and confected the Eucharist.
While their role grew in importance, medieval priests continued to fulfil the role of preacher, confessor and provider of pastoral care. As the concept of ordination changed theologically the practices and status of bishops, priests and deacons continued to be refined, with many of these medieval discussions continuing to the present day.
The doctrine of the Incarnation was wellspring and catalyst for theories of images verbal, material, and spiritual. Section I, “Representing the Mystery of the Incarnation”, takes up questions about the representability of the mystery. Section II, “Imago Dei and the Incarnate Word”, investigates how Christ’s status as the image of God was seen to license images material and spiritual. Section III, “Literary Figurations of the Incarnation”, considers the verbal production of images contemplating the divine and human nature of Christ. Section IV, “Tranformative Analogies of Matter and Spirit”, delves into ways that material properties and processes, in their effects on the beholder, were analogized to Christ’s hypostasis. Section V, “Visualizing the Flesh of Christ”, considers the relation between the Incarnation and the Passion.