Wednesday, June 12, 2013

An Apophatic Bent

Something about the apophatic tradition has always intrigued and called to me. This quote from Rilke, found in a letter he writes to a friend near the end of his life, has the same impact on me: 

"Now you would hardly ever hear me name him [God], there is an indescribable discretion between us, and where closeness and penetration once were, new distances stretch out as in the atom which the new science also conceives as a universe in little. The Tangible slips away, changes; instead of possession one learns the relativity of things, and there arises a namelessness that must begin again with God if it is to become perfect and without deceit." 

There is an honesty that attempts to find perfection, recognizing it can only be realized in the spaces, not in the tangible. And the distance can be as beautiful as the closeness. 

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