Mystery of God, Mystery of Christ: Christian Engagement with Hindu Mysticism

By Ysabel de Andia

Ysabel de Andia’s double exploration of Christian and Hindu mysticism, available in English for the first time.

ISBN: 9780227179451


Now available in English for the first time, Ysabel de Andia’s double exploration of Christian and Hindu mysticism provides a valuable addition to the field. Composed from lectures given in Benares in 2015 to priests of the Missions Étrangères de Paris, Mystery of God, Mystery of Christ combines the two main research interests that have defined de Andia’s career: first, an understanding of Christian mysticism as growing out of the Christian mystery of Christ and the sacrament, and secondly, the relationship between this and Hindu contemplative prayer as articulated by Jules Monchanin.

Beginning with the Cappadocian fathers, de Andia traces the developing interpretation of Mystery through Christian thinkers from Origen and Gregory of Nyssa to Basil and Dionysios the Areopagite. From here, she begins to dovetail this study with an exploration of Hindu contemplation, relating the Carmelite mystic St John of the Cross to the Advaitist tradition, especially as expounded by Shankara. Throughout, her masterful understanding of both traditions is apparent. For English readers, her insight will provide a fresh perspective on this lively subject area.

Additional information

Dimensions 229 × 152 mm
Pages 396

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Trade Information JPOD

About the Author

Ysabel de Andia spent the majority of her theological career as a researcher at the Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), and has also directed one of its research divisions. Her major works include Homo Vivens, on Irenaeus, Henosis: L’Union à Dieu, on Dionysios the Areopagite, for which she was awarded a Doctorat d’État, and more recently La Voie et le voyageur.


Foreword, by Andrew Louth

Part I: Mystery
1 The Mystery of Christ According to Saint Paul
2 The Mystical Meaning of Scripture
3 Nuptial Mysticism: The Song of Songs

Part II: Mystagogy
Mystery and Mystagogy
5 The Bridal Chamber
6 Baptism and Trinity
7 The Trinity and India
8 The Perfect Sacrifice

Part III: Mysticism
9 Negative Theology and Mystical Theology
10 To Suffer Divine Things (Pati Divina): The Mystical Experience
11 Passive, Loving Knowledge
12 The Heart, the Centre and the Self
13 Christian and Non-Christian
Conclusion: Mystery and Mysticism

Index of Names Cited


Endorsements and Reviews

One of the most credible ways of speaking about God in a secularised society is one in which God is approached as a mystery. This wonderful book by Ysabel de Andia shows that such an approach leads to insight into the interfaces between different religions. It also shows that it is precisely through a careful analysis of these interfaces that the specificity and beauty of the individual religions
becomes crystal clear. I think this study is an exceptionally good contribution to interreligious dialogue and to a better understanding of what exactly religion entails. Paul van Geest, Full Professor of Church History and History of Theology, Tilburg University & Full Professor of History of Theology and Economics, Erasmus University Rotterdam