b. 3-13-1907; Bucharest, Romania
b. 4-22-1986; Chicago
Mircea Eliade, best known as a historian of religion, philosopher, interpreter of religious experience, and professor, also wrote fiction.
Eliade understood religion as the manifestations of the Sacred (hierophany) and his “Eternal Return” described religious behavior as both an imitation of, and paricipation in, sacred event restoring the “mythical time of origins” evident in cross-cultural parallels.
Eliade was influenced by Rudolf Otto, worked with Carl Jung, and participated in the Eranos group.
Mircea Eliade quotes ~
• “The crude product of nature, the object fashioned by the industry of man, acquire their reality, their identity, only to the extent of their participation in a transcendent reality.”
• “The Experience of Sacred Space makes possible the ‘founding of the world’: where the sacred Manifests itself in space, the real unveils itself, the world comes into existence.”
• “Myth is an extremely complex cultural reality, which can be approached and interpreted from various and complementary viewpoints.”
• “In short, myths reveal that the World, man, and life have a supernatural origin and history, and that this history is significant, precious, and exemplary.”
• “The great cosmic illusion is a hierophany.... One is devoured by Time, not because one lives in Time, but because one believes in its reality, and therefore forgets or despises eternity.”
• Mircea Eliade at Amazon.com