Light is the central metaphor in the religious lives of Friends, but not of Friends alone. “The light that lighteth every person who cometh into the world” has served as an image of sacred mystery for ancient Hebrews and Greeks, for Dante, for modern poets, and for theorists on the physics of electromagnetism. What has Light meant to different people throughout the ages? How did various ideas about Light influence the prologue to]ohn’s Gospel? What did early Friends understand Light to mean? ln this pamphlet, Peter Bien explores the theology and poetry of Friends’ favorite religious symbol.
About the Author
Peter Bien first came to Pendle Hill in 1952 to train for Quaker International Voluntary Service in Holland. He was a trustee off and on from 1977 to 2005, serving as clerk of the Publications Committee. In his spare time, he used to profess English and comparative literature at Dartmouth College, specializing in the modern British novel and also in modern Greek poetry and prose, especially the work of Nikos Kazantzakis. In the 1980s, together with others from Hanover Monthly Meeting, he helped “invent” Kendal at Hanover, where he and his wife Chrysanthi have resided since 2002. In the summers, however, they happily occupy 300 acres in the Adirondacks, somehow feeding seven grandchildren and their parents. This is his fourth Pendle Hill pamphlet.