Waite recommended this to the young Aleister Crowley in as the book he should read to understand the nature of the Interior Church. Karl von Eckartshausen was among the most unusual mystics of his day. He was both a fervent Catholic and a Theosophist in the tradition of Jacob Boehme. A convinced believer in the Interior Church-that mystical body of true believers, linked by spiritual experience rather than by doctrine-Eckartshausen sought to broadcast his unique understanding of the Way of Regeneration in Christ.
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The Christian theosopher Karl von Eckartshausen was an eminent and influential exponent of early German romanticism. His work in natural philosophy and Christian theosophy was read and discussed by some of the most well-known European writers and poets of his time. Tsar Alexander I was an avid reader of his work. With regard to Naturphilosophie, the Christian kabbalah and Christian theosophy, corresponding themes may be discovered between his work and that of his friends, the Christian theosophers and philosophers Franz von Baader and Johann Heinrich Jung-Stilling Works by Eckartshausen were translated in several languages and published especially in France and Russia, as part of a strongly revived interest in these countries in Hermetic philosophy and Christian kabbalah.
In Russia, this revival was stimulated through the book production in the masonic and Rosicrucian circles of Nikolai Novikov and Ivan Vladimirovitch Lopuchin Through the exertions of Arthur Edward Waite, the mysticism of both Eckartshausen and Lopuchin received more public attention in the Anglo-Saxon world. He defended his own kind of religious philosophy against the new rationalism and materialism of what he considered the wrong sort of Enlightenment.
Strongly involved in the social and legal developments in his society, he foresaw and warned against the political and religious unrest in the era of the French Revolution His works have always confronted the turbulent political, social and religious reality of his times and thus caught the early romantic Zeitgeist. Eckartshausen did not always mention his sources but see nrs. Antoine Faivre, who devoted his PhD thesis to Eckartshausen, has recognized a number of themes and motives in his work.
First, Faivre distinguishes the principle of analogy or correspondence. This Hermetic principle allowed new insights attained by modern natural science to be interpreted as so many confirmations of long-existing theosophical intuitions.
Another motive appearing in the major texts by both Ivan Lopuchin and Eckartshausen is the concept of the Inner Church. The outer church and its many changing appearances and doctrinal differences were neither denied nor dismissed — in fact an interdependence of outer and inner church was recognized, but the spiritual meaning of the mystical inner room was given special emphasis.
Ideas about the relations between man and the divine and between creation and the mortality of nature were formed on the basis of especially gnostic and theosophical insights. Eckartshausen further valued nature and the principle of regeneration, which made a union with God a possibility.
Influences of alchemy the three principles mercury, sulphur and salt , Pythagorean number symbolism arithmology or arithmosophy , and the Christian and magical kabbalah directed his religious-philosophical as well as his scientific search.
He also discovered the outer and inner qualities in language and letters and developed his own aphoristic writing style without too many structural elements or any clear progression of thoughts and ideas. Still, this outwardly formless style, according to some, was most apposite in order to call forth his inner ideas and the coherence of his mystical insights. Andrej V. Danilov, Iwan Lopuchin. Erneuerer der russischen Freimaurerei.
Hanegraaff et. Massoneria, rosacrocianesimo e illuminismo nella Russia settecentesca: il circolo di N. Lopuchin, Some characteristics of the interior church, t r. Nicholson; ed. Waite, When asked about his motivation he answered that in order to clarify this mystery, the reader would do well to turn to a book by Pietro Bongo Petrus Bongus , a study that attempted to unite Pythagorean number mysticism and the Jewish kabbalah with Christianity.
In fact, both these authors worked in the tradition of the Christian kabbalah that took off in the Renaissance with the Hebrew studies of Giovanni Pico della Mirandola and Johann Reuchlin. Pico and Reuchlin had already connected Pythagorean number symbolism and kabbalist letter mysticism. The number fifteen had an important mystical, kabbalistic and apparently also personal significance for Eckartshausen see nr. There is a certain order in nature, in which forces or powers are at work.
In chapter eight the beginning of this pattern in nature is represented by seven Quellgeister source-spirits, powers, qualities. The sevenfold pattern works on the levels of the macrocosm nature and microcosm man. This dynamic order of powers is a model of divine harmony realized by Geist spirit. According to Antoine Faivre see nr. Matthias Claudius. Saint-Martin learned about Eckartshausen through his friend Niklaus Anton Kirchberger, who corresponded with both men.
Kirchberger also had to admit that for him Eckartshausen remained an enigma. In the first part of the Geheime Figuren der Rosenkreuzer a ppeared in nearby Altona. This German translation was also included in the anonymous Rosicrucian bibliography entry nr. This work by Georg von Welling about the magic kabbalah and theosophy was of great importance to the Gold- und Rosenkreuzer, a movement of Rosicrucians and Freemasons which flourished at the time. Considering his writings, Eckartshausen will have shared more of his ideas with the Gold- und Rosenkreuzer than with the rival order of the Illuminaten.
Like Welling e. This concept also occurs in the Geheime Figuren. In Lopuchin joined the Russian branch of the order of the Gold- und Rosenkreuzer. He was an active publisher of Russian translations of Hermetic and mystical works and to this end also set up his own free printing press. Waite, London ; and Russian edition, St. Petersburg The first Russian edition appeared in Lopuchin saw the Inner Church as a means also to give a place to his masonic insights within the Outer Church.
Both Lopuchin and Eckartshausen remained members of the established churches, respectively the Russian-Orthodox and the Catholic Church. For Franz von Baader nr. Franz von Baader is regarded as one of the most important Christian theosophers of the beginning of the nineteenth century. Eckartshausen also used the kabbalist symbol of the holy number 4 as a unifying principle. A selection of works by Karl von Eckartshausen. This work incorporates the lecture and is directed against the order of the Illuminaten and the work of Friedrich Nicolai, which, according to Eckartshausen, supported the wrong sort of enlightenment, a philosophy without religion.
For Eckartshausen, freethinking presented a danger to the people, the state and the church. In this first wide-ranging esoteric study, Eckartshausen shows his elaborate knowledge of the Hermetica, Naturphilosophie , Kabbalah and magic. Though, generally, few references to sources can be found in this work, the first volume does contain a bibliographical part pp.
In this volume Eckartshausen again writes against the Illuminaten. Eckartshausen is especially concerned here about those societies that lead away from the true and the good. Therefore only few share in them, who live in the true and the good. Around this time, Eckartshausen got to know the theosopher Niklaus Anton Kirchberger a friend of Saint-Martin with whom he conducted a correspondence in subsequent years and who, like Eckartshausen, published polemical tracts against the revolutionary, anti-monarchist and anti-religious movements of his time.
Was sind ihre Worte? The principle was also used by Baader. The parable can be compared to an earlier fictional work by Eckartshausen, which appeared in the year of the French Revolution: Der Tiger von Bengalen. Ein Buch mit vielen Wahrheiten , Munich The context of this fable is the social and political crisis of the time.
Kostis Reise , a kind of purifying journey between white and black magic, also defends old values against the unrest of the times and anticipates a religious and political crisis. Language and presentation of both works are also similar. In the latter work Eckartshausen tried to relate the language of nature alchemy with the language of Christian faith, an experiment which Waite thought less successful.
Yet at the beginning of the nineteenth century, alchemical symbols, even if generally difficult to interpret in practice, were still being used next to other symbols, allegories and correspondences. Arthur Edward Waite wrote an introduction for a new edition of the English translation by Isabel de Steiger first ed.
Mit einem Anhange eines aus magischen Characteren entzifferten Manuscripts. Ein nachgelassenes Werk , Munich. Published posthumously, this work regards man as microcosm in body, soul and spirit through Hermetic-gnostic, alchemical and kabbalistic insights. Themes such as creation, the fall of the first Adam, the possible perfectibility of nature and of man microcosm-macrocosm are expounded in a series of reflections. In this work more kabbalistic motives have been applied, a practice possibly influenced by the Christian and magical kabbalah of Georg von Welling see nr.
Select bibliography: Andrej V. Waite, A. Ein nachgelassenes Werk , Munich Published posthumously, this work regards man as microcosm in body, soul and spirit through Hermetic-gnostic, alchemical and kabbalistic insights.
Related topics Spreading the word. BPH Philosophia symbolica. Johann Reuchlin and the Kabbalah — ebook. Guide of the Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica.
Eckartshausen, Karl von (1752-1803)
This is a collection of 14 essays on a variety of occult-themed topics, covering the full spectrum of classic occultism and related subjects, but with a focus on the western mystery tradition within esotericism. The topics include Hermeticism, Ceremonial Magic, the Kabbalah, Ancient Wisdom and Philosophy, Rosicrucianism, Freemasonry and Mysticism, by some of the most notable and prominent names in the history of those subjects. The Cloud upon the Sanctuary is an inspirational work of Christian mysticism which speaks directly and symbolically to those who listen. This book was highly regarded amongst the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and influenced the work of Aleister Crowley. Ralph Waldo Trine was an important New Thought writer. Karl von Eckhartshausen was an 18th-century German mystic. The Cloud upon the Sanctuary is Christian mysticism veiled in hermetic code and often considered a classic among Rosicrucians and Theosophists.
Cloud Upon the Sanctuary
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Karl von Eckartshausen (1752-1803): “Die innere Kirche entstund…”
The Christian theosopher Karl von Eckartshausen was an eminent and influential exponent of early German romanticism. His work in natural philosophy and Christian theosophy was read and discussed by some of the most well-known European writers and poets of his time. Tsar Alexander I was an avid reader of his work. With regard to Naturphilosophie, the Christian kabbalah and Christian theosophy, corresponding themes may be discovered between his work and that of his friends, the Christian theosophers and philosophers Franz von Baader and Johann Heinrich Jung-Stilling
The Cloud Upon the Sanctuary
Eckartshausen, by nature and education an intensely religious man, began his writing career with several small books of devotion that had great vogue in France and Germany. He later turned his attention to larger works of a more profound character. According to Eckartshausen, the requisite faculty of true communion with the "interior church" is the inward conception of things spiritual; this sense makes possible the beginning of regeneration understood as the process of gradually eliminating Original Sin. His consideration of the interior church proceeds at two levels, beginning with an elucidation of his doctrine and moving to a series of assertions derived therefrom. It was later issued in book form. The English version was soon adopted not only by spiritual seekers but also by many occultists.