"...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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Friday, June 1, 2012
Rare Audio of Gershom Scholem
"In this 1975 lecture at Boston College the preeminent scholar in Jewish mysticism Gershom
Scholem speaks of the Kabbalistic doctrine of the tselem, the astral
body. The word “tselem” first appears in Genesis 1:26 when God creates
man and says “let us make man in our image (tselem) and in our
likeness.” In Hebrew “tselem” means “plastic image” and describes the
individual essence of each human being. It constitutes an independent
entity mediating between body and spirit. In mystical experience, the
tselem could manifest as the perception of one’s own double, which
revealed the deepest spiritual essence within man. Professor Scholem
retraces the historical development of the doctrine of the tselem in
Jewish mysticism and tells us how it is related to the principle of
individuation in man."