Proposals | Teresa of Avila and Metaphysical Desire
It is 3:57 am and I am awake writing final paper proposals that will hopefully be hand-crafted into lengthy works of art by next Friday afternoon, when I’ll also have taken one final exam and written no less than 45 pages of papers. Bring it.
I have been a deficient blogger, but you forgive me. Today I studied with a rad new friend named Kimberly who has been doing research at a DJ school. She is a brilliant creative brain and will likely write a book about what DJs have to teach the Church as they spin records. Woot.
As a way of trying to make sense of what I need to email Dr. Nancey Murphy tomorrow/today, I will try sketching out what I propose to write for the final paper for my favorite course of the quarter: The Theology and Science of Virtue. This class is the first of its kind and centers around unpublished research that Fuller professors–in conjunction with Cal Tech and other institutions–are learning about the connection between neuroscience and moral behavior. We’ve spent a lot of time studying how our character is perhaps shaped through the process of imitation (mimesis) and the significance of moral exemplars.
I am particularly interested in how the ancient mystics were moral exemplars in their practice of contemplative prayer. Teresa of Avila is an interesting bird for many reasons, not least of which that she lived through the Spanish Inquisition and used her ecstatic visions of God as means of subversive power in the shadow of patriarchy. I’m trying to use some theories of imitation (Girard) and the aesthetics (Murdoch) to show that Teresa of Avila’s wild prayers (i.e. meditating on Scripture till she saw something in her imagination) were subversive acts of art to be imitated.
In short, here is my bibliographic list for the final paper. Get excited!