[ mis-tuh-siz-uh m ]
/ ˈmɪs təˌsɪz əm /


the beliefs, ideas, or mode of thought of mystics.
a doctrine of an immediate spiritual intuition of truths believed to transcend ordinary understanding, or of a direct, intimate union of the soul with God through contemplation or ecstasy.
obscure thought or speculation.

Origin of mysticism

First recorded in 1730–40; mystic + -ism


an·ti·mys·ti·cism, nounnon·mys·ti·cism, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for mysticism

British Dictionary definitions for mysticism

/ (ˈmɪstɪˌsɪzəm) /


belief in or experience of a reality surpassing normal human understanding or experience, esp a reality perceived as essential to the nature of life
a system of contemplative prayer and spirituality aimed at achieving direct intuitive experience of the divine
obscure or confused belief or thought
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Cultural definitions for mysticism


In religion, the attempt by an individual to achieve a personal union with God or with some other divine being or principle. Mystics generally practice daily meditation.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.