By Charles M. Stang
This e-book examines the writings of an early sixth-century Christian mystical theologian who wrote less than the identify of a convert of the apostle Paul, Dionysius the Areopagite. This 'Pseudo'-Dionysius is legendary for articulating a magical theology in elements: a sacramental and liturgical mysticism embedded within the context of celestial and ecclesiastical hierarchies, and an austere, contemplative routine within which one gradually negates the divine names in hopes of soliciting union with the 'unknown God' or 'God past being.'
Charles M. Stang argues that the pseudonym and the impact of Paul jointly represent the simplest interpretive lens for knowing the Corpus Dionysiacum [CD]. Stang demonstrates how Paul animates the whole corpus, and exhibits that the impact of Paul illuminates such relevant topics of the CD as hierarchy, theurgy, deification, Christology, confirmation (kataphasis) and negation (apophasis), multiple similarities, and unknowing. most significantly, Paul serves as a fulcrum for the expression of a brand new theological anthropology, an 'apophatic anthropology.' Dionysius figures Paul because the most suitable apostolic witness to this apophatic anthropology, because the ecstatic lover of the divine who confesses to the rupture of his self and the indwelling of the divine in Gal 2:20: 'it isn't any longer I who stay, yet Christ who lives in me.'
Building in this proposal of apophatic anthropology, the publication forwards a proof for why this sixth-century writer selected to put in writing lower than an apostolic pseudonym. Stang argues that the very perform of pseudonymous writing itself serves as an ecstatic devotional workout wherein the author turns into break up in and thereby open to the indwelling of the divine. Pseudonymity is in this interpretation necessary and inner to the goals of the broader mystical company. hence this e-book goals to question the excellence among 'theory' and 'practice' by way of demonstrating that detrimental theology-often figured as a speculative and rarefied idea in regards to the transcendence of God-is in reality top understood as a type of asceticism, a devotional perform aiming for the whole transformation of the Christian topic.
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Additional info for Apophasis and Pseudonymity in Dionysius the Areopagite: "No Longer I"
115 No 112 113 114 115 Louth, Denys the Areopagite, 20. , 10. See Chapter Two. Von Balthasar, “Denys,” 149. , 151. 0/), which permits non-commercial reproduction and distribution of the work, in any medium, provided the original work is not altered or transformed in any way, and that the work is properly cited. ”116 The “whole phenomenon”—the “mystical relationship” and the writing it necessitates—exists on an utterly different level . . ]117 Von Balthasar is the ﬁrst modern scholar who suggests that pseudonymity is somehow integral to the mystical enterprise of the CD.
For while they each offer accounts of how the pseudonymous discipleship to Paul is germane to the aims of the CD at large—accounts which, it must be said, are wanting—they also each provide clear and instructive instances of the manner in which the scholarship on Dionysius has been overly determined by the question of form and content, substance and rhetoric: was Dionysius really a Christian or was he really a Neoplatonist? 89 III. —we must focus our attention on the pseudonymous character of the CD and the corresponding inﬂuence of Paul.
Syr. ” See also Briquel-Chatonnet, Manuscrits syriaques, 75. -M. 0/), which permits non-commercial reproduction and distribution of the work, in any medium, provided the original work is not altered or transformed in any way, and that the work is properly cited. com Pseudonymity and Paul 25 It is unclear whether Sergius believed that the author of the CD was in fact Dionysius the Areopagite. On the one hand, he never explicitly calls the pseudonym into question, and his introduction to his translation of the CD is full of quotations from Paul.
Apophasis and Pseudonymity in Dionysius the Areopagite: "No Longer I" by Charles M. Stang