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What exactly is this thing we call mysticism? As the general, secular public treats religion, so does the mainstream religious public treat mysticism, a special case, replete with mystery and the repository of great potential. Mysticism has served as the space for the bleeding edge of religion, where destabilizing forces have emerged but reactionary, regressive forces as well. Mystical religious communities have been both the most tolerant and the most exclusive, the most libertine and the most abnegating. Is there such a thing as mysticism? Can it be elicited from the religious frameworks in which it resides, or is it merely a modern, academic convention? In this course, we aim to work out some answers to those questions.