Exploring the lives of Saints has allowed me to enter a fullness in my Spiritual life. I have learned from so many who have traveled on the path of faith before me. St. Teresa is one of those Saints. Her life is a wonderful example of how persistence in faith bears much fruit. Like Julian of Norwich, Teresa of Avila lived in a time of great turmoil.
Interesting to consider that we will avoid struggle and turmoil at almost any cost. We’d rather run away, self-medicate, or live in denial of our problems. Yet, we have so many examples of how struggle and turmoil can be catalysts for great seasons of Spiritual growth.
Teresa lived in the 16th century and was a contemporary of St. John of the Cross. She was a mystic, contemplative, and monastic reformer. In 1970, she was among the first women to be given the title “Doctor of the Church.”
This honor was due in large part to her exceptional work, “Interior Castle.” While in prayer Teresa saw a vision of the soul shining like a crystal, she set to write the vision as an explanation of our journey to God. Originally written for the nuns under her direction, “Interior Castle” holds deep truths for those who desire Spiritual growth and union with God. The journey to union is one of self-knowledge.
In her writing, the inner self is likened to a crystal mansion. Each chapter takes the reader deeper and deeper through seven mansions into the inner chamber of the soul, where Christ, in glory, awaits them.
Teresa asserts that there are many obstacle to union with God. These obstacles are found and fought within the space that exists between where the soul lives – outside of itself, and where God lives – at the soul’s center. St. Teresa tells us that union with God is difficult, because “we do not understand ourselves, or know who we are.”
A little later this week I will be releasing information about an opportunity to join an intensive journey to God through Self-Knowledge. The lessons and exercises hold many keys to self-discovery. Send me your email address with the box below, to get valuable information as it becomes available.