Madame Jeanne Guyon— Mystic and Contemplative 1647-1717

Madam Guyon"Here [the contemplative state] everything is God. God is everywhere and in all things." —Madam Guyon

"May I hasten to say that the kind of prayer I am speaking of is not a prayer that comes from your mind. It is a prayer that begins in the heart.... Prayer that comes out of the heart is not interrupted by thinking!"—Madam Guyon, Experiencing The Depths of Jesus Christ p. 4]

"All that is of your doing, all that comes from your life-even your most exalted prayer-must first be destroyed before union can come about. All the prayers that proceed from your mind are merely preparations for bringing you to a passive state; any and all active contemplation on your part is also just preparation for bringing you to a passive state. They are preparations. They are not the end. They are a way to the end. The end is union with God!" —Madame Guyon - Experiencing Union with God Through Inner Prayer "

G. Richard Fisher

"The school of mysticism that Guyon adhered to, sometimes called Quietism, was an extreme form of Roman Catholic mysticism that emphasized the cleansing of one's inner life and included the belief that one could see Christ visibly. Before Guyon's day, in the Middle Ages, this took strange forms in erotic "bride mysticism" with some visionaries believing they were married to Jesus. Guyon and the Quietists went further, into something called essence mysticism. They believed that their being was merged with God's being and the two became one. This unbiblical idea survives today in the New Age and other non-Christian religions. In her autobiography, Guyon wrote that "divine wisdom is unknown." She made no attempt to speak of God's revelation of Himself in nature and creation (Psalm 19, Romans 1) and the specific revelation of God in Jesus Christ and His Word. She taught that we can know of God by "passing forward into God," going into a mindless, meditative state where we can get in touch with the Christ within the self, merge with that Christ and be lifted into ecstasy." THE MINDLESS MYSTICISM OF MADAME GUYON, G. Richard Fisher

"Madame Guyon was a Roman Catholic mystic who lived during the 17th and 18th century that was a promoter of 'quietism,' which involved becoming so passive that you become indifferent to everything. This was an extreme form of Roman Catholic mysticism that emphasized the cleansing of one's inner life and included the belief that one could see Christ visibly.

"Misinterpreting Jesus words in Luke 17:21 she began her lifelong journey within. She responded to the Lord, 'Thou wast in my heart, and demanded only a simple turning of my mind inward, to make me perceive Thy presence.... The kingdom of God is within you.' Madame Guyon said that she had reached the point where she was no longer capable of sinning. She said that sin involves self, and she had become free of self. Therefore, she could no longer sin." —Let Us Reason, Community Connections

July 22, 1680 •
Madame Guyon Believed She Achieved Union with God

"Modern critics say that Jeanne-Marie used self-hypnosis to achieve her 'spiritual' states and trances and point out that she used 'automatic writing' which suggests spiritualist practice. They wonder that she had so little to say about Christ (in proportion to the total number of words she wrote)."

—Christian History Institute



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