Meister Eckhart

The eye with which I see God is the same with which God sees me. My eye and God’s eye is one eye, and one sight, and one knowledge, and one love.“.

The above quotes belong to Meister Eckhart Eckhart von Hochheim  (c. 1260 – c. 1328),[1] commonly known as Meister Eckhart[a] or Eckehart, was a German Catholic theologian, philosopher and mystic, born near Gotha in the Landgraviate of Thuringia (now central Germany) in the Holy Roman Empire.

Eckhart came into prominence during the Avignon Papacy at a time of increased tensions between monastic orders, diocesan clergy, the Franciscan Order, and Eckhart’s Dominican Order of Preachers. In later life, he was accused of heresy and brought up before the local Franciscan-led Inquisition, and tried as a heretic by Pope John XXII. He seems to have died before his verdict was received.


Well with that quote it’s not surprising , that the church at the time accused him of heresy!

However on these more enlightened days he is considered a great mystic by many.

He was well known for his work with pious lay groups such as the Friends of God and was succeeded by his more circumspect disciples John Tauler and Henry Suso. Since the 19th century, he has received renewed attention. He has acquired a status as a great mystic within contemporary popular spirituality, as well as considerable interest from scholars situating him within the medieval scholastic and philosophical tradition.

Little is known about his family and early life. There is no authority for giving him the Christian name of Johannes, which sometimes appears in biographical sketches: his Christian name was Eckhart; his surname was von Hochheim.

Eckhart joined the Dominicans at Erfurt, probably when he was about eighteen, and it is assumed he studied at Cologne.


I will not go into detail, about the accusation, or it will require a book, luckily for him he died before a verdict was drawn.

It has been said of Meister Eckhart that he was the first Christian pantheist.


In his life and work he was not only an ordained priest, but also a visionary mystic whose ideas ranged beyond orthodox church norms. Shortly after his death, twenty-eight of them were declared heretical. But when charged with heresy, he had made only a conditional retraction, claiming to have spoken “the naked truth” and challenging the judges to demonstrate that what he said was false. Fortunately, he did not live to see the condemnation, or to suffer the consequences in person. Posterity has cleared his name and condemned the judges. But they were not the first ecclesiastics to forbid what lay outside the box: others before had often done so, and so have others since. I have nothing against the church, but I share Mark Twain’s quote:

“The Church has opposed every innovation and discovery from the day of Galileo down to our own time, when the use of anesthetics in childbirth was regarded as a sin because it avoided the biblical curse pronounced against Eve.”

Mark Twain

Some attribute Meister Eckhart thinking to Theologia Germanica, also known as Theologia Deutsch or Teutsch, or as Der Franckforter, is a mystical treatise believed to have been written in the later 14th century by an anonymous author. According to the introduction of the Theologia the author was a priest and a member of the Teutonic Order living in Frankfurt, Germany.

But let me finish with some quotes from Meister Eckhart:

“Be willing to be a beginner every single morning.”

“Spirituality is not to be learned by flight from the world, or by running away from things, or by turning solitary and going apart from the world. Rather, we must learn an inner solitude wherever or with whomsoever we may be. We must learn to penetrate things and find God there.”

“Theologians may quarrel, but the mystics of the world speak the same language.”

“A human being has so many skins inside, covering the depths of the heart. We know so many things, but we don’t know ourselves! Why, thirty or forty skins or hides, as thick and hard as an ox’s or bear’s, cover the soul. Go into your own ground and learn to know yourself there.”

“Truly, it is in the darkness that one finds the light, so when we are in sorrow, then this light is nearest of all to us.”

Only in the darkness can you see the Stars

About theburningheart

Blog: KoneKrusosKronos.wordpress.com
This entry was posted in Heart, History, Imagination, Inductive Knowledge, Inner Journey, Inspiration, Knowledge, Meister Eckhart, Mysticism, Saints, Sophia, Soul, Spiritual States, Spiritual Training, Spirituality, Transmutation, True Teaching, Uncategorized, Via Negativa, Via Positiva, Virtue, Western Ideals, Wisdom and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. macalder02 says:

    Lo mas resaltante de tu artículo está en la última parte. Allí donde dejas pensamientos que son muy valederos para entendernos nosotros mismo. Creo que en gran medida el aporte de este teólogo en que iba directamente a decir las cosas como debían. Nada como mirar nuestro interior para encontrarnos y cambiar lo que tenemos que cambiar para ser mejores personas.
    Lo de la Iglesia, era de esperarse cuando se consideraba pagano al que rebatía las leyes de Dios y en los tiempos de la inquisición hasta el día de hoy, es poco lo que se ha cambiado.
    Un gran abrazo amigo.

    • theburningheart says:

      Concuerdo contigo Manuel, especialmente atestiguo a la verdad de las ultimas lineas:

      “Truly, it is in the darkness that one finds the light, so when we are in sorrow, then this light is nearest of all to us.”

      Un abrazo mi Hermano!

  2. Don Ostertag says:

    Sure makes one think!!!

  3. Thanks for the introduction to this Christian mystic. Lots of wisdom in the selected quotes you’ve shared with us. I especially like the last quote about darkness and light.

    • theburningheart says:

      Ah! Rosaliene no doubt you have gone through sorrow, and pain, and know well about it, something we share in common, in fact I left that quote at last, because I consider the best one, and it’s my favorite and from long time ago before even reading it from Meister Eckhart, in fact the name of my blog, and my handle its all about it, is through the fire that base elements can be transformed into Gold, the real fulcrum of the Alchemist it’s is his/her heart…💖

  4. Fascinating, and ironic. I was unaware of this approach by any mainstream Christian theologians. My last post was a response to the Christian spiritual appeal of a rather well-respected biochemist who posts on WP. I have one of those personalities unable to make Kierkegaard’s leap, which combined with a “hard-science” background, leaves me as the proverbial “man with two watches”. I find myself stuck in the philosophical dichotomy of emergent awareness or “qualia” in what otherwise appears to be an entirely mechanical and deterministic universe. However, it has occurred to me that a solution could be in “God-as-emergent-observer”, simply peering in upon the unfolded bits of his own will. Perhaps we are all far closer to the source than we could ever suspect?

    • theburningheart says:

      Well God it’s a problem when looked as a duality, as most people see it, I mean God up there, creation down here, Moslem mystic had a term Wahdat al-wujud, which means “oneness of being” or “unity of existence,” is a controversial expression closely associated with the name of Ibn al-˓Arabi (d. 1240), even though he did not employ it in his writings.
      In plain English God it’s not only up there, it’s also us, and existence, past, present or future, the Reality of realities, as a whole, manifested, or not.
      Most mystics, around the World, past, present belonging to whatever religion, see it that way.
      Because we are finite, and confined to the space we call our living body, that wrongly we believe separated from anything else, as individuals, and different, and not as a part of something bigger, its hard to grasp.

  5. I’d never heard of this man. He does kind of sound like a heretic, though. 😦

    • theburningheart says:

      No dear, on the contrary, he is a mystic, it’s just hard for most people to understand people who are like him.😉

  6. sherazade says:

    Leggere di un argomento così Lontano dal frenetico quotidiano aiuta ad affrontare una giornata Con spirito più lieve .
    Buona giornata🌻

  7. ptero9 says:

    Although I’ve never studied Echardt, the few quotes I’ve read are appreciated. As for heresy, perhaps Jesus too would have been heretical for such challenging ideas as is the quote: “Haven’t you heard I said ye are gods?”
    Of course if you’re the Holy Roman Empire you readily assume the role of God! 🙂
    As artfully noted in Monty Python’s, Life of Brian: “God bless the Cheesemakers!”

    Thanks for the lovely post, dear Brigido! Hope you’re doing well.

    • theburningheart says:

      We are doing well, thanks God, hope you are as well.
      Well, I am of the opinion of the Swami Vivekananda, who said once:
      “It’s good to be born in a church, but not to die in one.”

      But I respect all religions, and its followers, its just they seem to be monuments to a great idea, but somewhere along time, and History they become sort of bureaucracies, where you go and punch a card, and get along, and have fun with your coworkers, and try to do the least around your job desk.
      We here, have a saying:
      “If you get into the example of Christ, you end crucified.”

      Thank you for your comment Debra.😊

  8. Thank you, Mr. Brogido, for your very interesting reportage concerning Meister Eckhart, which I liked very much and especially the following sentence: “Be willing to be a beginner every single morning.” By the way, he seems to have liked to speak to the uncultivated people!
    Best regards

  9. Pam Lazos says:

    Looks like I’m going to have to start reading some Meister Eckhart.

  10. selizabryangmailcom says:

    It’s interesting that people still, in this day, could look at this person and use the word heretic. I guess only in the most objective manner possible, since the definition of heretic is “a person holding an opinion at odds with what is generally accepted,” it’s absolutely true, he WAS a heretic in that sense. And in that sense, I would gladly be one also because I feel that what he said is not only true but completely benign and potentially enlightening and helpful for anyone who understands his meaning. Most people on earth see their God as a separate entity, I assume.But if a God-like force or energy or power created everything, how could we be separate from it? It’s like saying the baby a mother pushes out is separate from her, except that it’s not: it contains her DNA, her physical attributes, her very essence, which is what Mr. Eckhart was intimating, right? It’s amazing to think that he tackled that idea back then and said it out loud, because pretty much nobody was going to be on his side! I guess the “powers that be” felt it gave the “common man” too much power to feel that “God” was inside him, and it would undermine the power the church had, and wanted to maintain, of the masses being afraid of God, bowing down in subjugation, and feeling separate and judged by an all-seeing force instead of the more inclusive, empowering message of being one with everyone on the planet and one with the universe in general.

    • theburningheart says:

      Yes, on a commentary before I wrote: “God it’s a problem when looked as a duality, as most people see it, I mean God up there, creation down here.”
      Unfortunately the way most people understand it, me here God up there!
      And basically that’s what separate the Mystic from the believer, not to be able to realize, we are a Unity, even when almost every one has read on scripture:
      “Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” (Luke 17:21)
      And there is even a practice, or exercises in order to know that, not only intellectually, but to realize it in the core of our being, our hearts.
      I like to say to people the sin of Adam and Eve was not the bunch of nonsense of eating the forbidding fruit, that it’s just a symbol, but it was forgetfulness, in essence we have a very bad memory, and have to be reminded time, and again, and therefore Spiritual exercises or practices, just like children repeat the alphabet in order to memorize the letters. Here are some:
      Change your thinking about yourself and about God. …
      Regard every thought of God as God. …
      Practice believing that God dwells in you already. …
      Remember that God dwells in all others, too. …
      Be still and know that I am God.

      Thank you dear, and apologize for my lateness in answering you, I try to do it in order of the comments, and as soon as I can, but other things get on the way, you know life is short, and time goes flying!

  11. I have reblogged this very encouraging introduction (for me!) to Master Eckhart on mysticexperiences.net It’s gratifying to see it gets so many Likes.Very many thanks.


  12. Dalo 2013 says:

    Such a wise and thoughtful post, with all the chaos that life provide it is even more necessary to contemplate, and you’ve given us something with this insightful history of Eckhart. The quote I find myself reflecting on ~ “Rather, we must learn an inner solitude wherever or with whomsoever we may be…” Wishing you well.

    • theburningheart says:

      Yes, we need to find inner peace within out hearts, in order to gain spiritual insight.
      Thank you for your comment, and good wishes, we appreciate it, and desire for you as well.😀

  13. incredible history and pictures with a heartfelt read and insight. So lovely to meet a kindred spirit on the path. Thanks truly for your follow.. I’m now following you and look forward to staying in touch. 💖🙏🌈🌺

  14. theburningheart says:

    You are very kind, thank you, we appreciate it.😀❤

  15. GOD is ONE and HIS existence can be seen in everything, in all matter and forms – HE is the ultimate power to control nature, the Universe and HE is the maker of all that exists.

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