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‘You Are Twinned with the Spirit’

Re-reading a Christian Non-Canonical Text in Light of Jewish, Eastern-Christian, Manichaean Practices and Scriptures

This project deals with a less familiar Christian non-canonical text, mainly known as Revelation of the Magi. The text, which has been preserved in the only manuscript of a Syriac world chronicle known as Chronicle of Zuqnīn (after 775 CE), is an independent excerpt about the Evangelical Magi to be dated around the 4th century CE. After depicting the Magi as keepers of a secret knowledge transmitted from Adam to Seth, Revelation of the Magi insists on the Magi’s peculiar religious devotion (based on silent prayers and rituals) and on their visionary experiences, above all, the vision of the star upon a pillar of light (4:2-8) and other types of perceptions (27-28). The last part is devoted to Thomas’ blessing of the oil. The Magi are then baptized and start preaching.

The project aims to explore the ‘enstatic’ experiences, which the excerpt records, by investigating the role of senses within the text and focusing on the visual and sound experiences but also examining the imagery of perfume which the text develops.