The Ways of the Lord
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A rare female voice in the 12th century Christian Church, Hildegard of Bingen was a German nun, an oracle, a mystic, a prolific writer on religious subjects who practiced medicine, wrote plays, and composed music. The Ways of the Lord contains selections from Scivias, her major religious work, in which Hildegard describes amazing visions and explores the profound spiritual truths hidden within them. A HarperCollins Spiritual Classic, The Ways of the Lord includes a foreword by Homer Hickam, author of Rocket Boys, and is a glorious introduction to the genius and devotion of this extraordinary holy woman of the Middle Ages.
The HarperCollins Spiritual Classics series presents short, accessible introductions to the classic spiritual writers of the West. Abridged from Paulist Press’s distinguished Classics of Western Spirituality series, which boasts the best modern translations available, this new series seeks to find new readers for these dynamic spiritual voices–voices that have changed lives throughout the centuries and still do today.
“I saw a great mountain the color of iron, and enthroned on it One of such great glory that it blinded my sight. On each side of him there extended a soft shadow, like a wing of wondrous breadth and length. Before him, at the foot of the mountain, stood an image full of eyes on all sides, in which, because of those eyes, I could discern no human form.”–Hildegard of Bingen (1098-1179)
Hildegard of Bingen was widely consulted as an oracle and prophet and wrote prolifically on doctrinal matters, as well as on secular matters like medicine. Scivias, her major religious work, consists of twenty-six visions, which are first set down literally as she saw them, and are then explained exegetically. As a group the visions form a theological summa of Christian doctrine and are famous for their feminine and creative imagery of the divine. This volume is especially significant for feminist historians and theologians. It elucidates the life of medieval women, and is a striking example of a special form of Christian spirituality.
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