Histories of the Hidden God

Concealment and Revelation in Western Gnostic, Esoteric, and Mystical Traditions 

April D DeConick, Grant Adamson (Editors), London: Routledge, 2013, 368 p.


In Western religious traditions, God is conventionally conceived as a humanlike creator, lawgiver, and king, a being both accessible and actively present in history. Yet there is a concurrent and strong tradition of a God who actively hides. The two traditions have led to a tension between a God who is simultaneously accessible to humanity and yet inaccessible, a God who is both immanent and transcendent, present and absent. Western Gnostic, esoteric, and mystical thinking capitalizes on the hidden and hiding God. He becomes the hallmark of the mystics, Gnostics, sages, and artists who attempt to make accessible to humans the God who is secreted away. ‘Histories of the Hidden God’ explores this tradition from antiquity to today. The essays focus on three essential themes: the concealment of the hidden God; the human quest for the hidden God, and revelations of the hidden God.

(Text from the publisher)

Table of contents

Part I – Concealment of the Hidden God

1 – Who is hiding in the Gospel of John? Reconceptualizing Johannine theology and the roots of Gnosticism – April D. DeConick, Rice University

2 – Adoil outside the cosmos: God before and after Creation in the Enochic tradition – Andrei A. Orlov, Marquette University

3 – The old gods of Egypt in lost Hermetica and early Sethianism – Grant Adamson, Rice University

4 – Hidden God and hidden self: The emergence of apophatic anthropology in Christian mysticism – Bernard McGinn, University of Chicago

5 – God’s occulted body: On the hiddenness of Christ in Alan of Lille’s Anticlaudianus – Claire Fanger, Rice University

Part II – The Human Quest for the Hidden God

6 – Obscured by the scriptures, revealed by the prophets: God in the Pseudo-Clementine Homilies – Kelley Coblentz Bautch, St Edward’s University

7 – How hidden was God? Revelation and pedagogy in ancient and medieval Hermetic writings – David Porreca, Rice University

8 – From hidden to revealed in Sethian revelation, ritual, and protology – John D. Turner, University of Nebraska

9 – Shamanism and the hidden history of modern Kabbalah – Jonathan Garb, Hebrew University

10 – Dreaming of paradise: Seeing the hidden God in Islam – David Cook, Rice University

Part III – Revelations of the Hidden God

11 – Revealing and concealing God in ancient synagogue art – Shira Lander, Rice University

12 – The invisible Christian God in Christian art – Robin M. Jensen, Vanderbilt University

13 – On the Mothman, God, and other monsters: The demonology of John A. Keel – Jeffrey J. Kripal, Rice University

14 – Hidden away: Esotericism and Gnosticism in Elijah Muhammad’s Nation of Islam – Stephen C. Finley, Louisiana State University

15 – Conscious concealment: The repression and expression of African American Spiritualists – Margarita Simon Guillory, Rochester University

16 – Occulture in the academy? The case of Joseph P. Farrell – John Stroup, Rice University

Afterword: Mysticism, Gnosticism, and esotericism as entangled discourses – Kocku von Stuckrad, University of Groningen



Link: https://www.routledge.com/Histories-of-the-Hidden-God-Concealment-and-Revelation-in-Western-Gnostic/DeConick-Adamson/p/book/9781138664302

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