Nicolas of Cusa and the Sacred Masculine, Divine Feminine

One way we can awaken to the Sacred Masculine is to learn from those who have already done so.  I find this awakening in mystics and prophets, male and female.

Sojourner Truth. Drawing by Norman B. Wood on Wikimedia Commons.

Women like Hildegard of Bingen, Julian of Norwich, Joan of Arc, Teresa of Avila did so in challenging times.  So did Sojourner Truth and Dorothy Day.  All these women imbibed the sacred masculine as well as divine feminine in their consciousness and actions in the world.

Now let us consider some men who have found the sacred masculine in their lives balancing it wonderfully with the sacred feminine.  Besides Jesus, Buddha,  Mohammad, Black Elk, Isaiah and others, let us consider Nicolas of Cusa (1400-1464), who lived at the dawn of the sixteenth century Renaissance.  He was a scientist and mathematician and Cusa is near Bingen where Hildegard lived and wrote.  He was deeply familiar with Eckhart’s works and his scientific brilliance, along with his mystical genius, affected David Bohm, the late physicist who declared that he “owed more to Cusa than to Einstein.”  Quite a compliment from a late 20th century scientist and mystic!

Here is one teaching from Cusa to start with that moves me deeply.  He says:

Nicolas of Cusa, from a painting by Meister des Marienlebens, located in the hospital at Kues (Germany). Wikimedia Commons.

Humanity will find that it is not a diversity of creeds, but the very same creed which is everywhere proposed.

There cannot but be one wisdom….Humans must therefore all agree that there is but one most simple wisdom whose power is infinite; and everyone, in explaining the intensity of this beauty, must discover that it is a supreme and terrible beauty.

What makes his Deep Ecumenism all the more remarkable is that he was a cardinal in the Roman Catholic Church.

Adapted from Matthew Fox, Christian Mystics: 365 Readings and Meditations, p. 159. 

See also, Matthew Fox, The Coming of the Cosmic Christ, pp. 125-127.

To read the transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.

Banner Image: The tomb of Cardinal Nicolas of Kues (d. 1464), with its relief “Cardinal Nicholas before St Peter”, by Andrea Bregno in the church S. Pietro in Vincoli, Rome, Italy. Photo by Georges Jansoone on Wikimedia Commons.

Queries For Contemplation

Are you as excited as I am by Cusa’s deep ecumenism, coming at it does just before the Protestant Reformation?  And by his appeal to Wisdom which is a favorite category for him (and Wisdom, recall, is a name for the divine feminine).

Recommended Reading

The Coming of the Cosmic Christ: The Healing of Mother Earth and the Birth of a Global Renaissance

In what may be considered the most comprehensive outline of the Christian paradigm shift of our Age, Matthew Fox eloquently foreshadows the manner in which the spirit of Christ resurrects in terms of the return to an earth-based mysticism, the expression of creativity, mystical sexuality, the respect due the young, the rebirth of effective forms of worship—all of these mirroring the ongoing blessings of Mother Earth and the recovery of Eros, the feminine aspect of the Divine.
“The eighth wonder of the world…convincing proof that our Western religious tradition does indeed have the depth of imagination to reinvent its faith.” — Brian Swimme, author of The Universe Story and Journey of the Universe.

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6 thoughts on “Nicolas of Cusa and the Sacred Masculine, Divine Feminine”

  1. Avatar

    In paragraph 3 of today’s meditation, the early years of the fifteenth century, not the sixteenth, were those of Nicholas of Cusa’s life. Think: 1900-99 were in the 20th century. We are now in the 21st.

    Best wishes,

  2. Avatar

    Not to be defensive, but I think you missed my point. The Renaissance is often named (this is always fluid of course, historians naming periods and dates) as 1450 to 1650 or thereabouts. But the shortcut name is often “the sixteenth century renaissance.” I say Cusa wrote at the dawn of the 16th century renaissance, i.e. early in its launching at mid-fifteenth century. Which is true. He was early in that renaissance, i.e. 15th century.

  3. Avatar
    Stephen Palacios

    Thank you so much for your words of insight. I also look at the life of Simone Weil as embracing the Divine Masculine and feminine, you are a true inspiration. May God bless you.

    1. Richard Reich-Kuykendall
      Richard Reich-Kuykendall

      Stephen, thank you for mentioning the French philosopher, Simone Weil! She is also a good example that not all philosophers were men!

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