We are created in God’s image and the Trinity indwells us. Teresa says our souls have “great dignity and beauty” and is a paradise in which God takes great delight. Much of our spiritual journey is going within ourselves and exploring the Interior Castle (our souls) where the King lives.
We enter the castle through prayer and meditation. At first our prayer is ascetic prayer or action we initiate. As we go deeper into the castle we may experience mystical prayer or action God initiates. Mystical prayer can result in divine favors including revelation and ecstatic experiences.
We can grow spiritually in the first mansions. Our first focus area is acquiring self-knowledge and humility; “without humility all will be lost”. We should also stay planted in the “spring of life” and avoid the polluted waters of serious or viral sin.
Traveling through the First Mansions can be difficult because of the “reptiles” and the deceptions of the Devil. Reptiles are the things of the world that consume us. And the Devil, of course, is always trying to deceive us. Three of his most common strategies are getting us to believe lies (especially about ourselves), distracting us, and undermining love.
This is the 28th post for this blog and completes the First Mansions of the Interior Castle. Comments are always welcome. This is an especially good time to add additional thoughts you may have on the First Mansions. Thank you for reading Teresa of Avila Turns 500.
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