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Document Details :

Title: Moses as Mystic
Author(s): SPENCER, Michael D.
Journal: Studies in Spirituality
Volume: 17    Date: 2007   
Pages: 127-146
DOI: 10.2143/SIS.17.0.2024645

Abstract :
The gravity of Moses’ mysticism is signalized by the countless commentators who have spoken about this matter since ancient times. In fact, these writers, finding in Moses’ story the basis of a theology of mysticism, made him a fundamental source of the Christian mystical tradition. This study focuses on Exodus 33-34 and especially on Moses’ great mystical experience of God in Exodus 34:5-7. Part I of this study looks into some important preliminary matters, matters which include the vision of God experienced by Moses and his companions in Exodus 24 and those singular symbols prominent in the story of Moses – fire, darkness, and cloud – which comprise the symbolic arena of his mystical experience upon Mount Sinai. Part II of this study, which concentrates on Exodus 33-34, speaks of such matters as Moses’ prayer to see God’s glory, God’s presence in the soul of Moses, and the character and the personal impact of Moses’ experience of God in Exodus 34:5-7. This study draws especially on several of the very writers who are particularly important sources to the Christian mystical tradition, namely, Saint Gregory of Nyssa and Saint John of the Cross, though other writers, who include Jean Daniélou, Philo of Alexandria, Saint Augustine, and Pseudo-Dionysius, are seen here as well.

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