Medieval Mystical Women - The Beguines - Hadewijch Mechthild of Magdeburg & Marguerite Porete


The typical view of the middle ages is one of cultural, intellectual and religious stagnation. This is hardly the truth. The European Middle ages were marked by innovations at almost every cultural register including spirituality. This episode explores the radical and probing mystical spirituality of the Beguines, a lay culture of women who worked in the skilled trades, publicly preached, aided the poor and destitute, all as part of their own autonomous spiritual vocation. These women were also extraordinary mystics and theologians. We briefly explore three of these amazing women here: Hadewijch of Antwerp, Mechthild of Magdeburg & Marguerite Porete to reveal how their mysticism abounds in love, light, madness, and annihilation.

This episode is also a collaboration with my colleague Filip Holm over at Let's Talk Religion where he will be exploring the role of women in Sufism / Islamic Mysticism. Check out his video here:

#mysticism #beguine #women

Recommended Readings:

Hadewijch: The Complete Works - 978-0809122974
Marguerite Porete: The Mirror of Simple Souls - 978-0809134274
Mechthild of Magdeburg: The Flowing Light of the Godhead - 978-0809137763
Swan - The Wisdom of the Beguines - 978-1629190082
McGinn - The Flowering of Mysticism - 978-0824517434

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