Table of Contents

Reading the divine: a user's guide to the initiatory tale.
Reading between the lines: text as encounter with the divine.
Polishing a dirty mirror: the philosophic imagination.
The initiation of the philosopher: ritual poetics and the quest for meaning.
"God is beautiful and loves beauty": the role of aesthetics in medieval Islamic and Jewish philosophy.
Appendix: Ḥay ben Meqitz: an initiatory tale by Abraham ibn Ezra. The Texture of the Divine explores the central role of the imagination in the shared symbolic worlds of medieval Islam and Judaism. Aaron W. Hughes looks closely at three interrelated texts known as the Hayy ibn Yaqzan cycle (dating roughly from 1000--1200 CE) to reveal the interconnections not only between Muslims and Jews, but also between philosophy, mysticism, and literature. Each of the texts is an initiatory tale, recounting a journey through the ascending layers of the universe. These narratives cu.