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Divine Infinity And Eschatology: The Limits And Dynamics Of Human Knowledge According To Gregory Of Nyssa (Ce II 67–170)

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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines Gregory of Nyssa's ideas about human knowledge of God by focusing on his use of imagery, in particular, the symbol of the ladder which occurs briefly in the middle of Gregory's interpretation of the Abraham story. By looking at some of the forbears of this image, the author wishes to demonstrate how Gregory has developed a very sophisticated literary technique, which combines and alludes to symbols from several different sources. The chapter discusses the structure and context of CE II 67-170, in order to set the scene for the analysis of the image of the ladder. The image of the ladder, or steps, or staircase, does not occupy much space in Gregory's interpretation of the Abraham story. However, it is one important focal point for his argument about divine infinity and the pursuit of God.

Keywords: divine infinity; God; Gregory of Nyssa; human knowledge; Jacob's ladder



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