Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Philosophy (MA)

Degree Level





Edward Minar

Committee Member

Jacob Adler

Second Committee Member

Oksana Maksymchuk


Philosophy, Religion and theology, Epopteia, Intellectual intution, Ontological, Soteriological, Friedrich Schelling


Schelling calls for the restoration of originary revelation by the true philosopher and, for the successful anagogue, the creation of a philosophical-religion; in so summoning man back to his innermost beginnings in the Absolute prius, the life of life, this paper claims that Schelling revalorizes and retranslates the ancient Orphico-Pythagorean and Platonic traditions and Hellenic mystery teachings onto European soil. Accordingly, drawing on correspondences and concordances with and insights from traditionalist philosophy, the German Pietist reform movement and the antique contemplative tradition, this paper reads the Schellingian project as an initiatic mystagogy to intellectual intuition, in which the anagogic traveler descends to the primordial state and in which his shared essence with the life of life is revealed.

Schelling tells us that being precedes reflection and, accordingly, the ordinary plane of consciousness, as available in the various discriminations of negative philosophy, cannot attain to that which is. In the epistemic collapse of negative philosophy, the anagogic traveler turns to positive philosophy, as vehicled by contemplative askesis and orison, wherein discursive thought ultimately yields to the more primordial non-discursive thought in intellectual intuition. Intellectual intuition, which establishes what it intuits, reveals particular epopteia to the anagogic traveler; this epopteia is evidenced only a posteriori intellectual intuition by the resolute manner in which the anagogic traveler gears back into life. The ancient Hellenic mystery teachings, in keeping with the experiences of contemplatives everywhere, admit of two metaphysical insights to which the uncommon anagogic traveler may attain: the lesser, or illuminative, mysteries and the greater, or unitive, mysteries. In the lesser mysteries, the illuminated anagogic traveler comes to know that the entirety of the terrestrial realm is one – that all is a hierophany of the life of life – and in the greater mysteries, the anagogic adept attains to henosis with the divine, indestructible and ever-generative life of life and, in noetic perfection, becomes (consciously in the end) who he already is (unconsciously in the beginning); here, in identification with the life of life that births all that is, the anagogic adept co-creates the world and realizes soteriological redemption and ontological renewal.