Translated by John Parker
PREFACE TO MYSTICAL THEOLOGY.
MYSTICAL THEOLOGY is like that ladder set up on the earth whose top reached to Heaven on which the angels of God were ascending and descending, and above which stood Almighty God. The Angel ascending is the "negative" which distinguishes Almighty God from all created things. God is not matter----soul, mind, spirit, any being, nor even being itself, but above and beyond all these. The Angel descending is the "Affirmative." God is good, wise, powerful, the Being, until we come to Symbolic Theology, which denotes Him under material forms and conditions: Theology prefers the negative because Almighty God is more appropriately presented by distinction than by comparison.
What is the Divine Gloom?
TRIAD supernal, both super-God and super-good, Guardian of the Theosophy of Christian men, direct us aright to the super-unknown and super-brilliant and highest summit of the mystic Oracles, where the simple and absolute a [!] nd changeless mysteries of theology lie hidden within the super-luminous gloom of the silence, revealing hidden things, which in its deepest darkness shines above the most super-brilliant, and in the altogether impalpable and invisible, fills to overflowing the eyeless minds with glories of surpassing beauty. This then be my prayer; but thou, O dear Timothy, by thy persistent commerce with the mystic visions, leave behind both sensible perceptions and intellectual efforts, and all objects of sense and intelligence, and all things not being and being, and be raised aloft unknowingly to the union, as far' as attainable, with Him Who is above every essence and knowledge. For by the resistless and absolute ecstasy in all purity, from thyself and all, thou wilt be carried on high, to the superessential ray of the Divine darkness, when thou hast cast away all, and become free from all.
But see that none of the uninitiated listen to these things----those I mean who are entangled in things being, and fancy there is nothing superessentially above things being, but imagine that they know, by their own knowledge, Him, Who has placed darkness as His hiding-place. But, if the Divine initiations are above such, what would any one say respecting those still more uninitiated, such as both portray the Cause exalted above all, from the lowest of things created, and say that It in no wise excels the no-gods fashioned by themselves and of manifold shapes, it being our duty both to attribute and affirm all the attributes of things existing to It, as Cause of all, and more properly to deny them all to It, as being above all, and not to consider the negations to be in opposition to the affirmations, but far rather that It, which is above every abstraction and definition, is above the privations.
Reference address : https://www.elpenor.org/dionysius-areopagite/mystical-theology.asp