Chapter

Divine Cosmos

Paul Marshall

in Mystical Encounters with the Natural World

Published in print July 2005 | ISBN: 9780199279432
Published online February 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780191603440 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199279438.003.0005
Divine Cosmos

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The study of explanations in Part II commences with some notable transpersonal approaches to extrovertive mystical experience from the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. R. M. Bucke and Edward Carpenter put forward evolutionary theories of cosmic consciousness, and Carpenter’s theory of race-consciousness and the Ideas anticipated C. G. Jung’s theory of the collective unconscious and the archetypes. Liberal Christian thinkers balanced transcendent mysticism with the immanent path of nature mysticism, and thereby established an influential twofold typology of mystical experience. These thinkers looked outside a narrowly conceived Christianity for ideas that would enrich their explanatory frameworks: W. R. Inge drew on Plotinian philosophy, Evelyn Underhill on Henri Bergson’s vitalism, and Rudolf Otto on post-Kantian epistemology.

Keywords: cosmic consciousness; Bucke; Carpenter; universal Self; Jung; collective unconscious; archetypes; liberal Christianity; God; presence

Chapter.  13501 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Philosophy of Religion

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