Johannes Eckhart

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Eckhart, Johannes


Born circa 1260 in Hochheim, near Gotha; died late 1327 or early 1328 in Avignon. German thinker; leading philosophical mystic of the late Middle Ages in Western Europe. Dominican monk.

Eckhart studied and taught at the University of Paris, and later in Strasbourg and Cologne; J. Tauler and H. Suso were his students. In 1329 a papal bull declared 28 articles of Eckhart’s doctrine to be false.

The sermons and treatises that Eckhart wrote in German, most of which have come down to us in his students’ notes, deviate significantly from the norms of Scholasticism in both form and philosophical content. He elaborated and refined the Christian Neo-platonism of Dionysius the Areopagite. Eckhart’s main theme is the godhead (Gotheit)—the impersonal and featureless absolute beyond the tripartite god—as the totality of qualities and creative source of the world process. Man is able to know god because of the existence in man himself of a divine “spark” that is consubstantial with god. Renouncing its selfhood and becoming one with divine nothingness, the human soul becomes an instrument of god’s endless self-perpetuation.

Eckhart’s conception, which was unacceptable to orthodox Christianity, was open to interpretation in the spirit of pantheism. His doctrine gave impetus to the tradition of German mysticism, which frequently acquired the overtones of popular heretical beliefs. His teachings anticipated the idealist dialectics, developed by F. von Schelling and G. Hegel, of the oneness and divine nature of the world process. Eckhart and his followers played an important role in the development of German literary language.


Die deutschen und lateinischen Werke. Stuttgart, 1936–48.
In Russian translation:
Izbr. propovedi. Moscow, 1912.


Kopper, J. Die Metaphysik Meister Eckharts. Saarbrücken, 1955.
Oltmanns, K. Meister Eckhart, 2nd ed. Frankfurt am Main, 1957.
Degenhardt, J. Studien zum Wandel des Eckhartsbildes. Leiden, 1967.


References in periodicals archive ?
However, many scholars underline that his philosophy is a significant bridge between Christian and Buddhist thought; see Joseph Politella, "Meister Eckhart and Eastern Wisdom," Philosophy East and West 15 (1965): 117-133; Ueda Shizuteru, "Ascent and descent: Zen Buddhism in comparison with Meister Eckhart," The Eastern Buddhist 16 (1983): 72-91; Ueda Shizuteru, "Freedom and language in Meister Eckhart and Zen Buddhism.
He sees that it is Meister Eckhart who leads us, via the Godhead who is "the abyss of Unding" to something very close to the reason which famously opens the Tao Te Ching--and which leads early Western Christian translators of the Chinese classics like James Legge in the 19th century to connect the Tao with another untranslatable biblical term, the Logos.
Abstract: God is Being, "esse est deus", and only God is, He is the one and only Being, claims Meister Eckhart.
This book introduces the concept of spiritual seeing and explicates it through the thought and writings of Meister Eckhart, Nagarjuna, Huang Bo, and the Diamond Sutra.
Caputo admitted as well: "We have it on Heidegger's own assurance that Meister Eckhart is to be numbered among the great mystics, and therefore [.
Delirar un ahora que no sea la experiencia de una intensidad, sino la habitacion de una zona del tedio, una especie de viscosidad en la que el aqui y el ahora no sean la matriz de los actos, sino una clausura, una prision que enuncie al presente como un hueco, una percepcion diluida y ausente, en la que la soledad, el silencio, el vacio, que de Meister Eckhart a Descartes habian sido las condiciones de la introspeccion y de la mistica, establezcan las dimensiones de la no experiencia y el sopor.
It is not coincidental that his ideal Christian utopia for our times is a hierarchical society along medieval lines in which the inequalities of people do not affect their spiritual equality or their enjoyment of living and work (so that Martha, for Meister Eckhart, was the more blessed than Mary [208]).
Meister Eckhart - a 13th century Dominican theologian, philosopher and mystic - wrote, "We are all meant to be mothers of God.
Desde una inquietud semejante a la de Yannaras o Marion, la tentativa heideggeriana de John Caputo y Reiner Schurmann optara por centrarse menos en la figura fundacional del Pseudo Dionisio Areopagita para explorar el caracter apofatico del pensamiento de Meister Eckhart y Tomas de Aquino.
The medieval mystic Meister Eckhart was condemned for being a heretic but he encouraged us to seek God through the cracks and questions of our faith.
Hoeg] quotes from Kierkegaard and the theologian Meister Eckhart, cites Carl Jung, and alludes to Bach and Beethoven--all the while probing the nature of reality or, say, the conflicts between society and the individual.