Reading Auerbach on Dante's early poetry (Vita Nuova). "In Dante the esoteric lady of the stil nuovo stands forth clearly for all to see; she becomes a necessary part of the plan of salvation, decreed by Divine Providence. The blessed Beatrice, identified with theological wisdom, is the necessary mediatrix between salvation and man in need of enlightenment..." [p. 62; 1st publ. in 1929]

When poetry (Dante's) requires a personal mediatrix for wisdom, two ideas are implied : first, that all (human) knowledge is "incarnated", or mediated by particular individuals; and second, that theological wisdom is necessarily synthesized by the psyche and the imagination - it's not literal, transparent, absolute, in the way fundamentalists and dogmatists insist it must be.

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