Curricula vitae

Hein Blommestijn

Secondary school

Ik was born in Alkmaar in 1943. I attended secondary school at the Carmelites’ high school in Zenderen.

Entered Carmel

In 1963, I entered the novitiate of the Carmelite order in Boxmeer. I made my vows in 1964, and in 1971 I was ordained a priest.

University studies

After my courses in philosophy, I studied theology at the Gregorian University in Rome with an explicit emphasis on spirituality and extra courses on prayer and mystical literature. An important teacher for me was Karel Vladimir Truhlar S.J.. Afterwards, I studied at the Gregorian Institute for Psychology, and with a scholarship from the French government I studied spirituality at the Institut Catholique in Paris with Michel de Certeau S.J., and history of spirituality and mysticism at the École Pratique des Hautes Etudes (Sorbonne) with Jean Orcibal. In 1981, I obtained my doctorate summa cum laude at the Institute of Spirituality of the Gregorian University under Albert Deblaere S.J. with a dissertation on Jean de Saint-Samson (1571-1636).

Position as scholar and professor

In 1981, I received an appointment as a researcher at the Titus Brandsma Institute in Nijmegen, with particular responsibility for directing the department on the study of mystical literature. From 1987 to 2013 I was professor of mystical theology (professore invitato) at the Institute of Psychology of the Gregorian University. From 1988 to 2008 I was university teacher in spirituality at the faculty of theology of the Radboud University in Nijmegen. From 1987 onwards, I was a board member of the Titus Brandsma Institute and from 1996 to 1999 scientific director. My appointment terminated in 2017.

Current activities

I am specialized in mystagogy and spiritual accompaniment. My publications are mainly studies on mystical literature. At the moment my main activity is the publication of the Oeuvres Complètes of Jean de Saint-Samson. I am also collaborating in several studies into religious life. An important task lies in editing and publishing a number of contemporary spiritual and mystical texts. International collaboration with colleagues is a main priority.

Jos Huls

Secondary school

I was born in De Bilt in 1960. I attended secondary school at the Johannes College in Den Helder and the Lienward College in Leeuwarden.


University studies

After that I studied theology at the Catholic University of Nijmegen, specializing in spirituality and mysticism. These studies were concluded cum laude in 1988 with a master’s thesis on Dag Hammarskjöld that received an award.


Specialization in Sweden

I received several scholarships from the Swedish Academy for Dag Hammarskjöld research in Uppsala en Lund, where I further specialized in religious psychology, Swedish language and literature.


Entered Carmel

In 1990, I entered the Carmelite novitiate in Boxmeer. I professed my vows in 1992.


Position as scholar and professor

In 1989, I joined the Titus Brandsma Institute in Nijmegen as a researcher, initially with an eye to the project ‘returning to the sources of religious life’. In 2002, I obtained my doctorate with a dissertation on the Seven Ways of Minne by Beatrice of Nazareth. I gave several seminars on spirituality and mysticism in France, Italy, Great Britain, the United States, Ghana, and South Africa, besides teaching courses in the Netherlands. As a staff member of the Titus Brandsma Institute, I taught classes on mystagogy and mystical literature at the Radboud Universiteit in Nijmegen. I was the coordinator of the project Spirituality International (Spirin). My appointment terminated in 2015.

Current activities

I am specialized in mystagogy and spiritual accompaniment. I regularly publish on spirituality and mysticism, and am editor of the collection ‘Fiery Arrow’. My focus is the reading of mystical literature such as Beatrice of Nazareth (1200-1268), Thomas a Kempis, John of the Cross, Teresa of Jesus, Kierkegaard, and Dag Hammarskjöld. I am a research fellow of the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein in South Africa. My research is largely done in collaboration with colleagues and research institutes in other countries.