William James' four characteristics of mystical experience

  • Created by: gemshort
  • Created on: 30-05-18 18:55

Ineffability

  • 'The subject of it immediately says that it defies expression, that no adequate report of its contents can be given in words'
  • The mystical experience is so profound that mundane language cannot express it

Noetic quality

  • 'Mystical states seem to those who experience them to be also states of knowledge. They are states of insight into depths of truths... all inarticulate though they remain; and as a rule they carry with them a curious sense of authority for after-time'

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