9780791444368

Theosophy, Imagination, Tradition: Studies in Western Esotericism

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  • ISBN13:

    9780791444368

  • ISBN10:

    0791444368

  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2000-02-01
  • Publisher: State Univ of New York Pr
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Summary

Not only does this book present the current state of research in esotericism, but it also explores three main aspects of the field from the Renaissance to the twentieth century. Previously published in French and now available in English for the first time, Theosophy, Imagination. Tradition traces the history of the theosophical current, its continuity and shifts, against the background of social and cultural events. The book also covers the Paracelsian course, the romantic Philosophies of Nature and the Occultist movement. The book provides glimpses into the notions and practices of the so-called "active" and "creative" imagination, and questions how they serve as a bridge into certain kinds of mystical experience. It also examines the place that the notion of "tradition" occupies in some major exponents of western esotericism.

Author Biography

Antoine Faivre is Professor at the E.P.H.E. (Religious Studies), Sorbonne.

Table of Contents

Provenance of the Articles Published in This Volume xi
Preface: Esotericism and Academic Research xiii
Geneses xiv
Universities xviii
Criteriologies xxi
Methods xxv
THEOSOPHIES
The Theosophical Current: A Periodization
3(46)
The Birth and the First Golden Age of the Theosophical Current (End of the Sixteenth Century Through the Seventeenth Century)
5(10)
Its Genesis and Appearance
5(2)
The Characteristics of Theosophy and the Reasons for Its Success
7(3)
The First Corpus and the First Critical Discourses
10(5)
The Transitional Period (First Half of the Eighteenth Century)
15(5)
Two Theosophical Families
15(1)
Some Succinct Criticisms
16(1)
Jacob Brucker, or the First Systematic Description
17(3)
From Pre-Romanticism to Romanticism, or the Second Golden Age
20(6)
Reasons for the Revival
20(1)
Three Areas of the Theosophical Terrain
20(4)
The Word ``Theosophy'' and a Few Criticisms
24(2)
Effacement and Permanence (End of the Nineteenth to Twentieth Centuries)
26(23)
Factors in the Dissolution
26(2)
A Discreet Presence
28(1)
New Perspectives on the Theosophical Current
29(20)
Theosophy and Speculative Mysticism of the Baroque Century in Germany (Note on the Works of Bernard Gorceix)
49(38)
Valentin Weigel
50(9)
Johann Georg Gichtel
59(5)
Mysticism and Theosophy in Baroque Germany
64(13)
Theater, Kabbalah, and Alchemy
77(4)
Society and Utopias
81(6)
Theosophical Points of View on the Death Penalty
87(12)
Louis-Claude de Saint-Martin
87(4)
Joseph de Maistre
91(2)
Franz von Baader
93(6)
EXERCISES OF IMAGINATION
Vis Imaginativa (A Study of Some Aspects of the Magical Imagination and its Mythical Foundations)
99(38)
From Jacob's Sheep to the Magic Seed of Paracelsus
100(4)
Ways, Byways, and Stakes in the Great Century
104(6)
Pre-Romantic Versions
110(6)
From Romantic Naturphilosophie to Occultist Spheres of Influence
116(21)
Thoughts of God, Images of Man (Figures, Mirrors, and Engendering in J. Boehme, F. C. Oetinger, and F. Von Baader)
137(16)
Sophia and the Bildniss of Jacob Boehme
138(5)
The Sophianic Mirror
138(1)
The Image in Man: Greatness and Self-Effacement
139(2)
The Image in Man: Paths of Renewal
141(2)
Mirrors and Engendering in Franz von Baader
143(10)
The Theory of the Three Images
143(2)
Images and Reflections in God, in Man, and in Nature
145(8)
From the Divine Figure to the Concrete Figure, or Transparition Through Mirrors
153(18)
Introduction: Two Apocrypha, One Homily
153(3)
The Isomorphy of the Image and of Its Model
156(2)
Primacy of the Image for Access to the Model
156(1)
Isomorphy of Light and of the Eye
157(1)
The Reciprocal Engendering of the Image and Its Model
158(13)
The Personal Presence
158(1)
Reciprocal Engendering Through Seeing
159(2)
Perspectives
161(10)
IN TERMS OF ``TRADITION''
The Rosicrucian Manifestos (1614, 1615) and the Western Esoteric ``Tradition''
171(20)
Medieval Esoteric Themes in the Manifestos
171(3)
Literary Themes
171(1)
Arithmology and Organon
172(1)
The Philosophy of Nature
173(1)
Presence of Renaissance Philosophia Occulta in the Manifestos
174(6)
Paracelsism
174(2)
Esoteric Themes in Vogue in the Latin Renaissance
176(2)
Presence of the New Hermes
178(2)
The Manifestos Between the Old and the New
180(11)
Torchlight and Shadows
180(1)
The Fortunes of a Paradox
181(3)
Literary Esotericism in the Wake of the Manifestos
184(2)
Perspectives
186(5)
Analysis of the Meditations of Valentin Tomberg on the Twenty-Two Major Arcana of the Tarot of Marseilles
191(38)
Introduction: Bio-bibliographical Elements and Situation of the Work
191(4)
Christian Hermeticism and Traditions
195(13)
The Tarot and Hermetic Symbolism
195(2)
East and West
197(4)
The Hermetic Balance: Mysticism, Gnosis, and Sacred Magic
201(7)
Nature Philosophy and Anthropology
208(21)
The Signature of Things and Universal Becoming
208(2)
Living Polarities
210(7)
Hermetic Points of View on Man
217(6)
Regrets and Queries
223(6)
Raymond Abellio and the Western Esoteric ``Tradition''
229(32)
Esoteric Elements and Themes
229(6)
Biographical Data and the Gnostic Tradition
229(3)
Traditional Sciences and the ``Primordial Tradition''
232(3)
Esotericism and Modernity
235(5)
Rene Guenon and the Status of the West
235(2)
Abellio and His Kin
237(3)
Raymond Abellio's Specific Contribution to Esotericism
240(9)
Phenomenology and Absolute Structure
240(3)
Universal Interdependence and Love
243(2)
Perspectives
245(4)
A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL GUIDE TO RESEARCH (CONTINUED)
General works
249(1)
Alchemy
250(1)
Freemasonry and Fringe Masonry
251(1)
From the Second (Corpus Hermeticum) to the Fifteenth Centuries
252(1)
Renaissance and Seventeenth Century
252(4)
Eighteenth Century
256(1)
Romanticism and Naturphilosophie
256(1)
From the Nineteenth Through the Twentieth Centuries
256(2)
Concerning Tradition
258(1)
Esotericism, Literature, and Art
258(1)
Journals and Serials
259(2)
Index of names 261

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