Presentation Title

Methods and Madness: poetry that explores the religious phenomena of divine inspiration

Advisor Information

Michele Desmarais

Location

UNO Criss Library, Room 232

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Start Date

3-3-2017 2:15 PM

End Date

3-3-2017 2:30 PM

Abstract

For centuries preceding the Renaissance, artistic inspiration was thought to originate from a divine source, rather than the individual. Though this concept is most well-known through the Phaedrus dialogue––in which Plato attributes to Apollo, Dionysus, Eros, and the muses the inspiring of prophetic, ritualistic, erotic, and poetic/artistic mania in humans––the idea of the artist as an instrument of the divine, or a person acting with divine madness, has been a prevailing theme espoused by great artists throughout vastly different cultures, each employing their own terms for divine inspiration, while expressing their mystical traditions through various forms of art. The purpose of my research into divine madness is to facilitate a collection of poetry that reflects upon the parallels between mysticism and artistic expression. Instead of surveying the evolution of our psychological understanding of madness throughout history of the western world, or this notion of the 'tormented artist,' the collection explores the sources of the mystic's divine and the artist's inspiration––the places where artists and mystics experience the divine or moments of inspiration, the practice in which the divine and inspiration are communed or conceived, and the divine or fleeting nature of the muse––ultimately reflecting upon the ways in which humanity explores questions and issues related to the 'unknown' or the 'divine'.å

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Mar 3rd, 2:15 PM Mar 3rd, 2:30 PM

Methods and Madness: poetry that explores the religious phenomena of divine inspiration

UNO Criss Library, Room 232

For centuries preceding the Renaissance, artistic inspiration was thought to originate from a divine source, rather than the individual. Though this concept is most well-known through the Phaedrus dialogue––in which Plato attributes to Apollo, Dionysus, Eros, and the muses the inspiring of prophetic, ritualistic, erotic, and poetic/artistic mania in humans––the idea of the artist as an instrument of the divine, or a person acting with divine madness, has been a prevailing theme espoused by great artists throughout vastly different cultures, each employing their own terms for divine inspiration, while expressing their mystical traditions through various forms of art. The purpose of my research into divine madness is to facilitate a collection of poetry that reflects upon the parallels between mysticism and artistic expression. Instead of surveying the evolution of our psychological understanding of madness throughout history of the western world, or this notion of the 'tormented artist,' the collection explores the sources of the mystic's divine and the artist's inspiration––the places where artists and mystics experience the divine or moments of inspiration, the practice in which the divine and inspiration are communed or conceived, and the divine or fleeting nature of the muse––ultimately reflecting upon the ways in which humanity explores questions and issues related to the 'unknown' or the 'divine'.å