A comprehensive analysis of steven katzs language epistemology and mysticism

Consequently, all relevancy is destroyed. It is because of this inherent tension that is so vital to religion that the mystical experience cannot be taken out of its traditional context, and thus no true inter-traditional comparison can take place.

The Jew seeks to achieve an all consuming relationship with the absolute other, while the Buddhist seeks to lose the self in an all consuming absence. In other words, the individual -- through culture, traditions, education, and so on -- has an idea of what kind of experience should be had, and what form it should take, and what kind of context it should be in, prior to ever having an experience.

And it is on this point that Katz criticises Stace for seeing only the single univocal dimension of experience shaping beliefs, and failing to see the second symmetrical equivocal dimension. A movement must be made from a closed form of self-mediation to a more open form of intermediation.

Accordingly, the focus of this paper will be to look at the nature of mystical experiences as understood from an equivocal perspective as found represented in the work of Steven Katz. However, this position is also insufficient for any truly fruitful dialogue on the phenomenon of mystical experience.

It would appear that if mystical experience is exclusive to the point where tradition determines what type of experience is possible, then we are precluded from offering any informative account of the origins of such experience. Katz is aware of this, and for that reason he presses for a more detached archaeological consideration of mysticism.

To attempt to confine them to mere expositions is to destroy their vibrancy, and hence, to deny them life. This is not to deny the existential radicality of the mystical experience, but simply to comment on the traditional rootedness from which the experience gains its impetus and receives its boundaries of possible experience.

The causal connection that Katz directly posits only indicates the presence of a direct link between experience and tradition, yet it would appear that what Katz is really trying to claim in his implicit position is that experience is predestined by tradition.

And, consequently, the question must be asked whether it is thus possible to form a philosophical consideration of mysticism from an equivocal perspective.

Without the sudden and overwhelming awareness of the meaninglessness and absurdity of life and the world that is felt in the mystical experience, discussions about an experience that transcends this world become reduced to nothing more than idle chit-chat.

Katz (ed.), Mysticism and Philosophical Analysis

Hence, epistemologically speaking, an experience devoid of interpretation is incomprehensible. One may attempt to piece the multitude of fragments together from many different traditions trying to put the puzzle of mysticism before us in one grand overall picture.

On the one hand, the modern view, marked by the opinion that science is capable of accounting for all of reality, distillates the meaning of mystical experience to an analysis of the desires of the individual.

However, in modernity, identity is lost in the homogenisation of universality; and in post-modernity, the sense of community that the identity depends on for its presence of identity is lost in the disintegration of particularity.

Although there is a distinction between an interpretation and an experience, it is impossible to psychologically extrapolate a "pure experience". The problem is that philosophy has extreme reservations, if not complete indignation, about the acceptance of unverifiable experiences as the foundation for any concept, let alone any concept in which no tangible or conclusive results will ever be fully realised.

Comparative Mysticism

The Christian has a Christian experience, e. Katz fails to see any connection, any intermediation, possible between the vast varieties of self-mediating wholes. For this reason, the resulting fatalism of a purely equivocal perspective of mysticism must be rejected.

Thus they use the available symbols of their cultural-religious milieu to describe their experience. Therefore, the conclusion that will be illustrated is that because of this conservative character of mystical experience, the only dialectic possible is one of self-mediation, not intermediation.

Finally, Katz rejects the third classification -- in which he would place the theories of R. But has Katz himself apprised himself of all the relevant data, or has he conducted his research and formulated his theories from within the safe confines of religious-cultural studies?

Katz leaves no guesswork concerning his position on the mediation of mystical experience. An intermediate position between universality and particularity -- in between modernity and post-modernity -- must be located as the foundation for any experiential consideration of mysticism.

The understanding of mystical experience Mysticism understood as an experience derives many varying interpretations. Such presentations, whatever their appearance, are independent of the data and brook no contradiction. For some, experience might be quantified in economic terms; while for Katz, experience might be qualified in terms of tradition and heritage.

One example Katz uses to illustrate his point of difference based on original preconceptions is a contrast between what a Jew aims for, i. But in both respects, the sensitivity to the particular event at hand is lost. But what makes a Christian absorptive mystical experience different from a Buddhist absorptive mystical experience is the tradition which provides the foundation for such an experience -- namely, Platonism.

Each, from the perspective of their given religion, is considered to not only serve as a guide to fulfilling the tenants of that religion, but also as a vibrant, dynamic living force in its own right, e.Mysticism and Language by Steven T.

Katz, Katz This is a collection of original essays designed to continue and expand the groundbreaking discussion begun in Katz's previous collections, Mysticism and Philosophical Analysis (OUP ) and Mysticism and Religious Traditions (OUP ).

M. Kimmel Interpreting Mysticism An evaluation of Steven T. Katz’s argument against a common core in mysticism and mystical experience In his article “Language, epistemology, and mysticism”, Steven T. Katz presents his theory of the interpretation of mystical experience reports in which the foundational epistemological claim is that “there are no pure experiences”.1/5(1).

Mysticism and Language [Steven T. Katz] on killarney10mile.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers.

Steven T. Katz

This is a collection of original essays designed to continue and expand the groundbreaking discussion begun in Katz's previous collections5/5(1). Mysticism and understanding: Steven Katz and his critics BRUCEJANZ Interpretation is the only game in town.

I Language is the universal medium in which understand­ ing occurs. Oxford University Press is a department of the University of Oxford.

It furthers the University's objective of excellence in research, scholarship, and education by publishing worldwide. MYSTICISM AND. PHILOSOPHICAL ANALYSIS EDITED BY STEVEN T.

KATZ New York Oxford University Press Language, Epistemology, and Mysticism.

A comprehensive analysis of steven katzs language epistemology and mysticism
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