An exploration of the nature of reality, mysticism begins with the individual struggle toward a clear vision and culminates in a transformed consciousness. This marvelous guide to the contemplative life originated with the reflection of an unknown fourteenth-century priest who believed that a -cloud of unknowing- separates people from God. This cloud, he maintained, cannot be penetrated by intellect --only by love.
The Cloud of Unknowing offers an approach to contemplative life that finds holiness at a level deeper than physical experience and beyond language or image. The author advises placing all thought and mental imagery behind a metaphorical -cloud of forgetting- while seeking to love the divine. Hidden from the infinite consciousness by a -cloud of unknowing, - divine love can be reached through monologistic prayer -- a single-word prayer, like a mantra, that assists in abandoning all extraneous thought. Seekers can thus attain an inner silence, where they may -be still and know the sacred.-
The author's spiritual gifts, combined with his humorous and straightforward approach, offer a view of divinity that never loses the common touch. Written in everyday language and edited by a popular authority on mysticism, this venerable work can be understood and appreciated by any reader.