Chapter

Conclusion The Mystical Life of Franz Kafka in Perspective

June O. Leavitt

in The Mystical Life of Franz Kafka

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780199827831
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199919444 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199827831.003.0017
Conclusion The Mystical Life of Franz Kafka in Perspective

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Kafka’s clairvoyance was comprised of a diverse assortment of attributes-- paranormal perception, awareness of a mysterious gnosis permeating the world, apprehension of spiritual realms and a hierarch of beings, a belief in the existence of the soul with a yearning to encounter it, and a type of imagination which generates symbols and images with eschatological undertones. This chapter argues that the diverse assortment of attributes may account for the depiction of a variety of mystical experiences in his texts. The varieties of mystical experience depicted by Kafka are in harmony with experiential esoteric systems whose province is personal revelation. However, the chapter maintains that his writings also provide evidence that he was an enthusiastic participant in a spiritual movement which idealized mystical and clairvoyant modes of consciousness and encouraged their representation in art and literature.

Keywords: Kafka; mysticism; mystical literature; clairvoyance; mystical experience; mystical imagination; experiential mysticism; theoretical mysticism; psychic powers

Chapter.  5131 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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