Biography of Jan van Ruysbroeck (1293-1381)

Flemish Mystic, who was born in Ruysbroek, Brussels, and died Groenendaal, Brabant. He/She was Chaplain of St Gúdula in Brussels (1318) and led an austere life. As a reaction to the enlightenment of his time, especially against the brethren of the free spirit, he/she retired to Groenendaal with several companions, and there they formed a Community (1343), which, in 1350, was added to the regular canons of san Agustín. Ruysbroek was its first prior, dedicated to meditation, and with it the monastery became very famous and became the center of an intense mystical life. Geert Groote, Tauler and Kempis Tomás considered him as their teacher. He/She wrote in the Flemish language without having any intention of systematic, his works were fruit of prayer and the contemplative life. The Carthusian Lorenz Surius, in 1552, translated them into latin and brought together them in a corpus; the best known are: adornment of the spiritual marriage; The book of the twelve Sisters of charity; The mirror of eternal salvation; The Kingdom of the lovers of God. His doctrine, very balanced, indicates the progression that marks the union of the soul with God. Influenced by the German Dominican school, he/she was the creator of the "Devotio moderna" movement. He/She was beatified in 1908. The feast is celebrated 2 December.