Flashcards in Christianity Depth Study: Hildegard von Bingen Deck (9)
Give some background information about Hildegard.
Born in 12th century Germany; 10th child of noble family.
As was the custom (of tithing) she was taken to a convent at age 8 & was taught by anchoress Jutta. Age 38 became abbess.
Suffered frequent migraines & illnesses.
Founded 2 convents - received a vision to leave Disibodenburg.
Was a mystic & wrote visions down.
What extra beliefs did Hildegard have?
World-view centred around relationship between body & spirit.
Believed in cleansing the church from corruption.
Believed in herbal medicine, natural cures…
"A human being is a vessel that God has built for himself and filled with his inspiration so that his works are perfected in it."
What did Hildegard do as a feminist?
Defended her sisters against discrimination; defied stereotypes & patriarchal structure of the Church.
Insisted on own nunnery, away from monks.
Believed men & women were spiritually equal before God.
"Man cannot be called man without woman, & woman cannot be called woman without man."
What did Hildegard contribute to Christianity?
Music & Art
How did Hildegard's writings contribute to Christianity?
She experienced visions & mystical experiences & was persuaded to write them out -> SCIVIAS (Know the Ways of the Lord)
Scientific works: PHYSICA (Natural History), Books of Divine Works.
Medical: Book of Simple Medicine, Causes & Cures
Commentaries on Gospels, & biographies of St Rupert & St Disibod
Was persistent towards publishing.
Wrote according to world-view.
How did Hildegard's music & art contribute to Christianity?
No musical training - wrote 70+ hymns; claimed to heal.
Musically ahead of time - used modes for feelings.
Music as DIVINE PRAISE
What contribution/impact did Hildegard's communication and preaching have?
She wrote letter to political leaders - reminded them that they were still accountable to God.
4 preaching tours - against corruption in the Church.
Saw the clergy "preferring a sword to a shepherd's staff:". Saw the Church as "a weeping mother in pain."
Hildegard as a scientist...
Her science gave credibility to writings.
Practical contribution to welfare of others - followed Jesus' model.
Early environmentalist: "The earth, which sustains humanity, must not be injured; it must not be destroyed."