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Document Details :

Title: God as Guest, Pilgrim, Physician, Bridegroom
Subtitle: Spiritual Role-Play in Dat boec der minnen
Author(s): SMITS, Lieke
Journal: Ons Geestelijk Erf
Volume: 89    Issue: 2   Date: 2018   
Pages: 123-146
DOI: 10.2143/OGE.89.2.3286272

Abstract :
Dat boec der minnen, a thirteenth-century spiritual treatise read by women, describes eleven roles God plays as he lives and works in the human soul. In this article I examine the reception of this relational imagery, unique in Middle Dutch literature. The text can be understood more broadly within the context of bridal mysticism, Hertzklosterallegorien, and medieval reading practices such as lectio spiritualis. Highlighting two of the roles of God, as pilgrim and as physician, I show how the text prepares the reader for increasingly intimate encounters with him, guiding her in her spiritual transformation. The relational spirituality offered by Dat boec der minnen encourages an active and reflexive engagement with the text in which the reader continuously contemplates her own spiritual progress.

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