"...the Imagination (or love, or sympathy, or any other sentiment) induces knowledge, and knowledge of an 'object' which is proper to it..."
Henry Corbin (1903-1978) was a scholar, philosopher and theologian. He was a champion of the transformative power of the Imagination and of the transcendent reality of the individual in a world threatened by totalitarianisms of all kinds. One of the 20th century’s most prolific scholars of Islamic mysticism, Corbin was Professor of Islam & Islamic Philosophy at the Sorbonne in Paris and at the University of Teheran. He was a major figure at the Eranos Conferences in Switzerland. He introduced the concept of the mundus imaginalis into contemporary thought. His work has provided a foundation for archetypal psychology as developed by James Hillman and influenced countless poets and artists worldwide. But Corbin’s central project was to provide a framework for understanding the unity of the religions of the Book: Judaism, Christianity and Islam. His great work Alone with the Alone: Creative Imagination in the Sufism of Ibn ‘Arabi is a classic initiatory text of visionary spirituality that transcends the tragic divisions among the three great monotheisms. Corbin’s life was devoted to the struggle to free the religious imagination from fundamentalisms of every kind. His work marks a watershed in our understanding of the religions of the West and makes a profound contribution to the study of the place of the imagination in human life.

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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Hillman, Jung, Corbin

I've had a chance to watch nearly all of the DVD of James Hillman speaking at Pacifica on Jung's Red Book and active imagination, which I noted earlier here. He does indeed mention my work, though briefly. His point concerns Corbin's crucial linkage of Mulla Sadra's notion of the "intensity of being" with the practice of "creative" or "active" imagination. It seems to me that this lecture is very worthy of attention, though I wish they would lower their prices. The topic is of particular concern to me lately & I expect to have more to say about this, perhaps in the Oxford lecture this fall.

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