Quaker Religious Thought


Mark Bredin


Birkel’s book, at one level, is a searching historical enquiry establishing the possible direct influence of John Cassian on Robert Barclay, Jeanne Guyon on Sarah Lynes Grubb, Johannes Tauler on Caroline Stephen, Jacob Boehme on Rufus Jones, and Buddhist mysticism on Teresina Rowell Havens. He emphasizes his study to be “strongly shaped by…the principles of historical study” (8). His conclusion is, indeed, rooted in the language of historical probabilities, such as “based on incontestably solid ground” (100) or “are more tentative” (100).



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