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Interior Castle | [Teresa of Avila]

Interior Castle

Teresa of Avila's Interior Castle is one of the most celebrated books ever written by a mystic on abiding in union with Christ. Writing in obedience to the requests of two of her superiors, the humble 16th century Spanish sister protests "...for the love of God, let me get on with my spinning and go to choir...like the other sisters...I am not meant for writing; I have neither the health nor the wits for it."
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Publisher's Summary

"While I was beseeching Our Lord to-day that He would speak through me, since I could find nothing to say and had no idea how to begin to carry out the obligation laid upon me by obedience, a thought occurred to me which I will now set down, in order to have some foundation on which to build. I began to think of the soul as if it were a castle made of a single diamond or of very clear crystal, in which there are many rooms, just as in Heaven there are many mansions."

Thus begins Teresa of Avila's Interior Castle, one of the most celebrated books ever written by a mystic on abiding in union with Christ. Writing in obedience to the requests of two of her superiors, the humble 16th century Spanish sister protests "...for the love of God, let me get on with my spinning and go to choir...like the other sisters...I am not meant for writing; I have neither the health nor the wits for it."

However, in her pre-coffee-house conversational style, Teresa of Avila charmingly proves to her listeners that she does have the wits for conveying that "the most essential thing is that we should love God..." as she takes us by the hand and lead us on a visually beautiful spiritual journey into the soul, that Interior Castle where Christ abides, and where we may abide with Him in holy, intimate communion.

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  •  
    Amazon Customer Hattiesburg, MS United States 04-10-12
    Amazon Customer Hattiesburg, MS United States 04-10-12 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "falling in love with the Divine"

    Christian Classic! This is the measuring stick I read every few years. It's not to be read as a measure for achievement for bragging or boasting but a cultured humility garnered through failing and surrendering into the arms of grace.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Angela Marquette, MI, United States 08-27-11
    Angela Marquette, MI, United States 08-27-11 Member Since 2010
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    "Beautiful, Truthful and Warm"

    It is as if a beautiful peaceful and loving grandma is being ever so truthful and so humble in her writing, you can't help but listen and know she is speaking from a power higher than us. She is not once trying to think she knows anything, but knows the truths from God. Her insights get a little bit too complicated, but at the same time soothing to the soul.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steve Bardstown, KY, United States 03-26-12
    Steve Bardstown, KY, United States 03-26-12 Member Since 2011
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    "A Spiritual Classic Well Read"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Interior Castle to be better than the print version?

    In many ways, yes. You still need the printed book to study, and make notations, but the reader makes it seem as if St. Teresa herself is reading to you.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Interior Castle?

    It is hard in a spiritual classic like The Interior Castle to pick a most memorable moment, for each insight is worth thought and contemplation. Pressed to answer, I have to say the explanation of intellectual visions.


    Have you listened to any of Susan Denaker’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No, I have not, but I will look for her in the future.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The entire book moves me. This is the fourteenth reading for me.


    Any additional comments?

    Remember, this was written in the 16th Century, and the frequent references to humans as worms and unworthy is very much 'of the time.' Also, when she says,

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laura Redmond, WA, United States 06-16-13
    Laura Redmond, WA, United States 06-16-13 Member Since 2013
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    "The voice of another century long ago"
    If you could sum up Interior Castle in three words, what would they be?

    The Interior Castle offers a brilliant framework for self reflection, spiritual maturity, and transformation.


    What other book might you compare Interior Castle to and why?

    This book is a good companion to works written by St. John of the Cross as both he and St. Teresa of Avila share similar interior insights and perspectives on mystical experience with the Divine.


    What about Susan Denaker’s performance did you like?

    Ms. Denaker has a good nun voice :) She speaks with clarity and excellent diction. Listening to her is like sitting at the feet of St. Teresa of Avila and listening to her spiritual experience as it was shaped in her particular world view of Catholicism in the 1500's. Yet, what Teresa shares about the mystical experience is timeless! Susan Denaker gets better and better at capturing the nuances of St. Teresa's writing voice as the Castle progresses.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
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