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Felon's Maxims of the Saints

by Thomas Cogswell Upham

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Thomas Upham was an American philosopher and a prominent figure in both psychology and the Holiness Movement of 19th century Methodism. The mind of the French mystic Madame Guyon particularly intrigued him. In a two volume work on her life, Upham included the full text of Archbishop Felon’s (or Fénelon) defense of her religious practices against accusations of heresy. Felon and Guyon had developed a deep friendship in 1688. In response to the Catholic Church’s condemnation of Guyon’s writings, Felon ultimately refused to abandon his friend. He argued in forty-five points that saints from all eras had held views similar to Guyon’s. These points are the Maxims of the Saints, and Felon’s defense serves as one of the earliest arguments in favor of the movement that later became known as Quietism.

Kathleen O’Bannon

CCEL Staff
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