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Title: To Be is to Gaze and Be Gazed at
Subtitle: Vision in Maria Maddalena de' Pazzi's Mysticism
Author(s): CAMILLERI, Charlò
Journal: Studies in Spirituality
Volume: 19    Date: 2009   
Pages: 35-46
DOI: 10.2143/SIS.19.0.2043672

Abstract :
The visionary mysticism of the Carmelite mystic Maria Maddalena de’ Pazzi (1566-1607) was from the seventeenth century onwards an object of admiration which triggered an hagiographical legend that surrounds the mystic to this day. As from the first half of the twentieth century scholars carried erudite studies on Maddalena’s texts in an attempt to decode her rather exceptional mystical experience. In the following article the author approaches Maddalena’s visionary mysticism through an analysis of ‘vision’ relying upon literary, biblical, mystical, philosophical and psychological perspectives on the subject. The interdisciplinary approach to the concept of ‘vision’ shows that de’ Pazzi’s mystical visions led her to gradually acquire both mystical divine knowledge and growth in the formation of self through the reciprocal communicative gaze between God and herself. Mystical vision therefore engenders openness to the other in a relationship that fosters communality against radical individualism.

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