The Secrets of Mysticism Revealed in Nichifor Crainic's PDF
Nichifor Crainic Cursurile De Mistica.pdf: A Guide to Romanian Orthodox Mysticism
If you are interested in learning more about the mystical tradition of the Romanian Orthodox Church, you may want to read the PDF file titled "Nichifor Crainic Cursurile De Mistica.pdf" . This file contains the transcripts of twelve lectures that were given by Nichifor Crainic, a prominent Romanian poet, philosopher, theologian, and cultural leader, at the University of Bucharest between 1934 and 1940.
Nichifor Crainic Cursurile De Mistica.pdf
In this article, we will provide an overview of the content and significance of Crainic's mystical courses, and how they can enrich your spiritual life. We will also briefly introduce the life and work of Crainic, and some of the sources and influences that shaped his mystical vision.
Who was Nichifor Crainic?
Nichifor Crainic was born in 1889 in a village near Sibiu, in Transylvania. He studied theology and philosophy at various universities in Romania and abroad, and became a professor of philosophy at the University of Bucharest in 1922. He was also a prolific writer, editor, critic, and promoter of Romanian culture. He founded several literary journals, such as Gândirea (The Thought), Cuvântul (The Word), and Calendarul (The Calendar), where he published his own poems and essays, as well as those of other writers who shared his vision. He also organized literary circles, conferences, seminars, and festivals that fostered a new generation of writers who were inspired by his mystical ideas.
Crainic was a leading figure of the "Gândirist" movement, which advocated for a revival of the Romanian national identity and spirituality based on the Orthodox faith and the rural traditions. He also developed a system of mystical theology that aimed to synthesize the Eastern and Western sources of Christian mysticism, and to apply them to the modern context. He delivered his mystical courses at the University of Bucharest between 1934 and 1940, attracting a large audience of students, intellectuals, clergy, and laity.
Crainic's life and work were marked by controversy and persecution. He was accused of being a fascist sympathizer and an anti-Semite by his political opponents. He was arrested several times by different regimes, and spent many years in prison or under house arrest. He died in 1972 in Bucharest.
What are Crainic's Mystical Courses?
Crainic's mystical courses are a series of twelve lectures that cover various topics related to Christian mysticism. The lectures are divided into two parts: the first part deals with the general principles and methods of mystical theology; the second part deals with the specific features and examples of German mysticism.
The first part consists of eight lectures:
What is Mysticism? - Crainic defines mysticism as "the science of the direct and immediate knowledge of God" . He distinguishes between natural and supernatural mysticism, and between ascetic and ecstatic mysticism.
The Justification of the Orthodox Definition - Crainic argues that his definition of mysticism is based on the Orthodox doctrine of deification (theosis), which teaches that human beings can become like God through grace.
Spiritual Theology: Division and Method - Crainic explains that spiritual theology is the branch of theology that deals with the perfection of the Christian life. He divides it into three parts: asceticism, illumination, and union.
The Sources of Orthodox Mysticism - Crainic identifies four main sources of Orthodox mysticism: Scripture, Tradition, Reason, and Experience.
The Dionysian System (I) - Crainic introduces the writings of Dionysius the Areopagite, a 6th-century Christian mystic who influenced both Eastern and Western spirituality. He focuses on his treatise On the Divine Names.
The Dionysian System (II) - Crainic continues his analysis of Dionysius' works. He focuses on his treatise On Mystical Theology.
The Dionysian System (III): The Hierarchies - Crainic discusses Dionysius' treatises On the Celestial Hierarchy and On the Ecclesiastical Hierarchy. He explains how Dionysius describes the order and function of angels and humans in relation to God.
The Three Stages of Spiritual Life - Crainic summarizes the three stages of spiritual life according to Orthodox mysticism: purification (katharsis), illumination (theoria), and union (henosis).
The second part consists of four lectures:
Purification (I) - Crainic explores the concept and practice of purification in Christian mysticism. He explains how purification involves both negative (mortification) and positive (virtue) aspects.
Purification (II) - Crainic continues his exploration of purification. He focuses on the role of prayer and fasting in purifying the soul.
Illumination - Crainic examines the concept and practice of illumination in Christian mysticism. He explains how illumination involves both natural (reason) and supernatural (grace) aspects.
Union - Crainic studies the concept and practice of union in Christian mysticism. He explains how union involves both passive (ecstasy) and active (love) aspects.