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Document Details :
Title: «As a lover with his beloved»
Subtitle: The Reaction of the Earliest Forms of Middle Dutch Mysticism to the Separation of Theology and Spirituality
Author(s): FAESEN, Rob
Journal: Ons Geestelijk Erf
Volume: 78 Issue: 3-4 Date: December 2004
The ‘divorce’ of spirituality and theology was already in full swing in the thirteenth century. The initial reactions to this separation in the Low Countries by one of the dialogue partners, namely mystical spirituality, show that this mystical spirituality did have a specific ‘theo-logy’. The expression ‘As a lover with his beloved’ (Ida of Nijvel) serves to typify the manner with which thirteenth century Middle Dutch mystical literature speaks of the knowledge received by the mystic concerning God and the life of God. It is a form of knowledge that is received and understood in the reciprocal experience of love between God and the human person. This likewise implies an awareness of who or what the human person is in essence: not a closed off entity that enjoys the limited capacity to turn its gaze towards a distant Other, but rather an unrestricted openness towards love, Love in the absolute sense of the word, such that the one beloved can dwell in the Other.