Teaching Mysticism

Hardcover | November 24, 2011

EditorWilliam B. Parsons

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The term 'mysticism' has never been consistently defined or employed, either in religious traditions or in academic discourse. The essays in this volume offer ways of defining what mysticism is, as well as methods for grappling with its complexity in a classroom.This volume addresses the diverse literature surrounding mysticism in four interrelated parts. The first part includes essays on the tradition and context of mysticism, devoted to drawing out and examining the mystical element in many religious traditions. The second part engages traditions andreligio-cultural strands in which 'mysticism' is linked to other terms, such as shamanism, esotericism, and Gnosticism. The volume's third part focuses on methodological strategies for defining 'mysticism,' with respect to varying social spaces. The final essays show how contemporary socialissues and movements have impacted the meaning, study, and pedagogy of mysticism.Teaching Mysticism presents pedagogical reflections on how best to communicate mysticism from a variety of institutional spaces. It surveys the broad range of meanings of mysticism, its utilization in the traditions, the theories and methods that have been used to understand it, and providescritical insight into the resulting controversies.

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The term ''mysticism'' has never been consistently defined or employed, either in religious traditions or in academic discourse. The essays in this volume offer ways of defining what mysticism is, as well as methods for grappling with its complexity in a classroom.This volume addresses the diverse literature surrounding mysticism in fo...

William B. Parsons is Associate Professor of Religious Studies at Rice University. His publications include The Enigma of the Oceanic Feeling, Religion and Psychology: Mapping the Terrain, Mourning Religion, Disciplining Freud on Religion, and dozens of essays in multiple journals and edited books. He has served as Chair of the Depart...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:368 pages, 9.25 × 6.12 × 0.98 inPublished:November 24, 2011Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199751196

ISBN - 13:9780199751198

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Table of Contents

IntroductionWilliam B. Parsons: Teaching Mysticism: Frame and ContentPart OnePresenting the Mystical Element: Tradition and Context1. Hugh B. Urban: Teaching ''Hindu Mysticism,''2. April DeConick: Mysticism Before Mysticism: Teaching Christian Mysticism as a Historian of Religion3. Livia Kohn: Teaching Chinese Mysticism4. David B. Gray: The Mystical Dimensions of Buddhism5. David Cook: Teaching Islam, Teaching Islamic Mysticism6. Elliot R. Wolfson: Teaching Jewish Mysticism: Concealing the Concealment and Disclosure of SecretsPart TwoNegotiating Mysticism: Expanding the Map7. Lee Irwin: Chosen by the Spirits: Visionary Ecology and Indigenous Wisdom8. Joy R. Bostic: Teaching African American Mysticism9. Wouter J. Hanegraaff: Teaching Experiential Dimensions of Western EsotericismPart Three:Investigating Mysticism: Perspectives, Theories and Institutional Spaces10. Jorge Ferrer: Teaching the Graduate Seminar in Comparative Mysticism: A Participatory Integral Approach11. Stephanie Ford: Teaching Mysticism in Dialogue with Gender and Embodiment at a Quaker Seminary: A Feminist Approach12. William B. Parsons: Mysticism, Spirituality and the Undergraduate: Reflections on the Use of Psychosocial Theory13. Michael Stoeber: Mysticism in Ecumenical Dialogue: Questions on the Nature and Effects of Mystical ExperiencePart FourTracking Mysticism: Pedagogy and Contemporary Culture14. Steven Sutcliffe: From ''Comparative Mysticism'' to ''New Age Spirituality:'' Teaching New Age as the Raw Materials of Religion15. Philip Wexler: Mystical Education: Social Theory and Pedagogical Prospects16. Jeffrey J. Kripal: Secrets in the Seats: The Erotic, the Paranormal, and the Free Spirit