During the past century, an enormous effervescence of events changed the sociopolitical configuration of the world. The interpretation of these facts helped further deepen the crisis in which modern thought already found itself--and it generated the uncertain and unstable environment in which we live today, the so-called postmodernity, late modernity, or hypermodernity. In this context, one of the most profound impacts is most certainly the one on religion. During the twentieth century, religion proved not to be banished from the human horizon as the masters of suspicion intended. Known as the godless century, the twentieth century saw also a resuscitation of the search for the sense of life and spirituality. With the crisis of modern reason, humankind turned toward consumerism and provisional and ""light"" practices. The last century represents not only the height of the postmodernization process but also the rescue of the transcendent and absolute, even if it is an absolute without face and identity. It is in this scenario that religious experiences, apparently exiled by modern rationality, begin to occur and multiply again. Mystical experiences will be, then, the basis for highlighting recurrent characteristics with universal import. But they will show a different configuration than before. One will be able to find them not in so-called sacred spaces but in very secular ones; not so much within institutions but at the borders, or even outside them; not configured by a specific tradition but in an interface that makes more than one tradition meet and dialogue. ""In The Mystery and the World, Maria Clara Bingemer dares to take on our contemporary secular culture and insists on our need for religious experience. While arguing for the reality of religion, she posits a particular course, for all of us, to rediscover the Transcendent. . . . Through her account of how it is that we are this way, she proposes other narratives that bring us to an encounter of passion for God. It's Bingemer at her best."" --James F. Keenan, Canisius Professor, Boston College ""Reading Dr. Bingemer's book, the idea of mystical thought as an outdated, esoteric tradition fairly crumbles in our hands. By carefully laying out the spiritual experiences and ethical concerns of a number of modern mystical personalities who sought a life of grace outside the official church or at its fringes, she challenges people of faith to open their eyes to their tacit conspiracy in the ongoing degradation of human life and the ecology of the earth."" --James W. Heisig, Nanzan Institute for Religion and Culture Maria Clara Bingemer is Professor of Systematic Theology at the Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She teaches fundamental theology and theology of God. She is the author of many books and articles in various languages, including A Face for God (2014) and Mary, Mother of God, Mother of the Poor (1987), and coeditor with Peter Casarella of Witnessing: Prophecy, Politics, Wisdom (2014). She is a member of the editorial board of Concilium.