Chad Thralls has created this syllabus for a course he is offering this spring at Seton Hall University. SSCS members can get a copy by emailing the SSCS Blog moderator. Here is the course description:
Though the terms “mystic,” “mystical,” and “mysticism” are used frequently in our culture, it is not clear what people mean when they use them. Usually, the term refers to something vaguely mysterious, paranormal, or just plain weird. This course will explore the phenomenon of mysticism in the Christian tradition using first and third-person perspectives; it will explore the topic in theory and in practice. It will begin with an introduction to Christian meditation, traditionally referred to as contemplation. Each class session of the course will include time devoted to contemplative practice. The course will then present a historical introduction to major mystics (or contemplatives) in the Christian tradition. The course will conclude with an exploration of how contemplative practice relates to contemporary issues such as societal polarization and the environment.