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dc.contributor.authorCockayne, Joshua
dc.identifier.citationCockayne , J 2018 , ' The Dark Knight of the Soul : weaning and the problem of divine withdrawal ' , Religious Studies , vol. 54 , no. 1 , pp. 73-90 .
dc.identifier.otherPURE: 252335769
dc.identifier.otherPURE UUID: 97ee84ef-70c1-48c9-94c8-029f48512d96
dc.identifier.otherScopus: 85006785002
dc.identifier.otherORCID: /0000-0002-1545-8247/work/61133228
dc.description.abstractIf God loves us and so desires union with us, why is it that so many, who once felt close to God and who have subsequently done nothing to precipitate separation from him, now experience only his absence? A metaphor which has been used repeatedly to answer this question is that separation from God is a kind of spiritual weaning process in which God uses the experience of his absence in order to bring about maturation and greater union with him. After discussing the use of this metaphor in Kierkegaard's Fear and Trembling and John of Cross's poem The Dark Night of the Soul, I discuss the question of how someone's absence could be good for their maturation. I argue that separation has an important role to play in deepening relationships of love – drawing on research in de-adaptation in the psychological and sociological literature, I argue that in order for there to be a union of love, there must be an experience of both dependence and independence. This position can explain why God allows people who engage in the spiritual life to suffer the pain of separation from him.
dc.relation.ispartofReligious Studiesen
dc.rights© Cambridge University Press 2016. This work has been made available online in accordance with the publisher’s policies. This is the author created accepted version manuscript following peer review and as such may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at:
dc.subjectBL Religionen
dc.titleThe Dark Knight of the Soul : weaning and the problem of divine withdrawalen
dc.typeJournal articleen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. School of Divinityen
dc.description.statusPeer revieweden

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