Saint Teresa of Avila on the Foundation and Fruit of Prayer
Author: Mark O'Keefe, OSB
Publisher: ICS Publications
The Way of Transformation is a play on the title of St. Teresa’s classic The Way of Perfection. Written for her Discalced Carmelite nuns, it is nonetheless considered Teresa’s “operations manual” for anyone genuinely committed to the spiritual life. But by “perfection” she doesn’t intend the futile pursuit of idealized flawlessness, as some might think. Rather, Teresa means achieving an authentic human fulfillment—a true becoming of that person we are meant to be. Offering a fresh perspective on St. Teresa’s thought, Father Mark O’Keefe draws our attention to the central fact that she considers the virtues—especially love of neighbor, detachment, and humility—as the essential and ever-relevant foundation for her spirituality of prayer. This very human Doctor of the Church teaches that—whether in the 16th century or the 21st— prayer is intimately and necessarily linked with personal transformation. Authentic prayer is never divorced from our daily living: God, Teresa reminds us, “walks among the pots and pans.” With attention-catching quotations, helpful questions for personal reflection or group discussion, and its comprehensive index, The Way of Transformation is an excellent resource for any serious student of St. Teresa of Jesus and a must-read for everyone looking to explore Christian spirituality and prayer more deeply and authentically.
The works of Spanish nun SAINT TERESA OF AVILA (1515-1582) rank among the most extraordinary mystical writings of Roman Catholicism and among the classics of all religious traditions... and her own life story is considered one of the finest autobiographies in any language. From her carefree childhood through her life as an ascetic Carmelite nun, from her visions of Satan through her worship of God, this is her passionate yet earthy retelling of her struggles with temptation, her work founding and ruling convents, and her devotion to God. Hailed by those seeking spiritual succor as one of the most accessible guides to achieving a closer relationship to God through prayer, this extraordinary book remains a commanding entry to numinous Christianity.
The Book of Her Foundations is the least read, the least quoted, the least known of St. Teresa's works. Why this is so is probably because people do not think it is a spiritual book. But as you read on, you find that St. Teresa grew in holiness, not in spite of obstacles such as being entangled in lawsuits, mired down in disputes over dowries, tied up in interminable bureaucratic red-tape, and having to deal with unscrupulous businessmen, but because of these difficulties. None of these challenges impeded her spiritual growth. This study guide will help us to see how Teresa grew in holiness in the marketplace as much as in the cloister, perhaps even more so. None of us has been called to found convents, but like Teresa all of us are called to practice virtue and grow in holiness within the fray of daily life.
Her writings are more than 400 years old, yet Teresa of Avila continues to impact Christians with her fervent, passionate faith in God. the teachings of this sixteenth-century Spanish saint and mystic are practical enough for modern society because they are based on sheer devotion and holiness to God through prayer and common sense. Edited by James Houston, a highly acclaimed scholar and pioneer in the field of evangelical spirituality.
Teresa of Ávila (1515–1582) is one of the most beloved of the Catholic saints. In 1562, during the era of the Spanish Inquisition, Teresa sat down to write an account of the mystical experiences for which she had become famous. The result was this book, one of the great classics of spiritual autobiography. With this fresh translation of The Book of My Life, Mirabai Starr brings the inimitable Spanish mystic to life for a new generation, with contemporary English that mirrors Teresa's own earthy, vernacular Spanish, and that presents us with—four centuries after Teresa's death—someone we feel we know: a woman intoxicated with God yet filled with an overflowing love for the world.
A remarkably vivid portrait of the great Carmelite. These pages present the general reader with a complete and satisfying introduction to St. Teresa and a well-balanced interpretation of her life and times.
A Study Edition, with Introduction, Commentary, Discussion Questions, Glossary, and a fully linked Index. St. Teresa of Avila is an unsurpassed teacher of Christian prayer and spirituality, and in The Way of Perfection she is at her best. Now, with the help of this study edition, everyone can enjoy the benefits of her wisdom. In The Way of Perfection, St. Teresa gives practical counsels and advice on prayer, destined originally for the few nuns who embraced the reformed Carmelite life she established. As a handbook for spiritual formation, it presented them with the basic Christian spirituality undergirding their Constitutions and Rule. Over the centuries, the book's appeal has reached far beyond the walls of Carmelite monasteries, and The Way of Perfection has become a spiritual classic. More and more today, Teresa's instructions speak to all those interested in prayer, providing them with basic guidelines for praying and showing how to avoid potential pitfalls. But as the readership and interest grow, so does the need for some help in working with this sixteenth-century text. The principles and teachings in Teresa's book, first presented within the limited horizons of her own situation, clearly lend themselves to broader applications, and can work well in all walks of life. This study edition-with its introduction, commentary, notes, discussion questions, glossary, and a fully linked Index-provides what is needed to assist contemporary readers in making these applications and delving more deeply into the text's spiritual riches.
The great mystic Teresa of Avila was, along with Catherine of Siena, a woman Doctor of the Church. These Sampler extracts from her masterpiece talk about the spiritual journey and about prayer as a mutual and growing friendship with God.