Entering the Castle: An Inner Path to God and Your Soul

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Internationally renowned motivational teacher, spiritual instructor, and popular theologian Caroline Myss has created a transcendent work of unique insight and revelation in Entering the Castle. This exciting new teaching of contemporary mysticism is also a brilliant synthesis of the psychology of consciousness and of Eastern and Western mystical traditions. Myss provides a highly original inner path to self-knowledge -- which is also the road into a spiritual knowledge of God and your own soul -- as she reveals ...
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Entering the Castle: An Inner Path to God and Your Soul

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Overview

Internationally renowned motivational teacher, spiritual instructor, and popular theologian Caroline Myss has created a transcendent work of unique insight and revelation in Entering the Castle. This exciting new teaching of contemporary mysticism is also a brilliant synthesis of the psychology of consciousness and of Eastern and Western mystical traditions. Myss provides a highly original inner path to self-knowledge -- which is also the road into a spiritual knowledge of God and your own soul -- as she reveals a necessary external path, one that takes you out into the world to serve God and others as a mystic without a monastery -- without having to retreat into total silence, self-denial, or isolation.

As her main template for this extraordinary, modern spiritual journey, Myss uses the beloved, revered writings of The Interior Castle by Teresa of Ávila. Adapting Teresa's vision of the soul as a beautiful crystal castle with many floors, or mansions, and many rooms within those mansions, Myss guides us from room to room, helping us meet different aspects of our self, our soul, and our spirit -- preparing us for the ultimate encounter with God and our own divinity. Through intense practices and methods of spiritual inquiry adapted for contemporary life, she helps us to develop our personal powers of prayer, contemplation, and intuition and to ascend the seven levels of soul knowledge that build an ever stronger interior castle of our own -- a soul of strength and stamina.

As in all her books, Myss also recounts stories of profoundly moving real-life experiences -- of her own, as well as of her students and of renowned spiritual figures -- that bring home the universal truth of her insights. Presiding over the entire book and journey are the great mystics, ancient and contemporary, of Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and Hinduism with their inspiring lives and discerning spirits. And over all, the benevolence, truth, and gentle and tough love of Teresa of Ávila shine through.

Doubtless Myss's most deeply personal, revealing, compassionate, and transforming book yet, Entering the Castle is a comprehensive guidebook for the journey of your life -- a journey into the center of your soul. There, peace, God, and a fearless bliss wait for you to discover them...and claim them for your own.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Fans of Myss's earlier books (Sacred Contracts, etc.), which drew inspiration from such diverse traditions as Indian medicine and ancient divination methods, may be surprised at how thoroughly entrenched her new book is in the Western religious tradition. In the preface, she discusses how an out-of-the blue seizure and a midlife hunger for an authentic spiritual practice set her exploring the mystical tradition of her childhood Catholic faith. Using St. Teresa of Ávila's metaphor of the "interior castle" as a template, Myss challenges readers to get in touch with their own souls and shows how they can then lead deeper, more joyous lives. Every chapter is packed with meditations that help to either clean out the detritus that prevents spiritual growth or prepare for a mystical meeting with God. Interspersed are supportive stories of those who have gone before on the path. While Myss explicitly states that readers need not become Catholic or even Christian to enter the castle, some may be turned off by how little she incorporates other traditions. Even so, the material clearly springs from a deeply personal place and every page rings with the passion and intensity of someone who has finally found what she was seeking. (Mar. 6)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781594152122
  • Publisher: Gale Cengage Learning
  • Publication date: 4/15/2008
  • Series: Walker Large Print Series
  • Pages: 590
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Caroline Myss is the author of the New York Times bestselling books Invisible Acts of Power, Sacred Contracts, Why People Don't Heal and How They Can, and Anatomy of the Spirit, and is a pioneer and international lecturer in human consciousness. In 2003, she founded the CMED Institute, an educational program that specializes in intensive classes on archetypes, personal power, and mysticism. Her audiotapes include Entering the Castle (Hay House) and Why People Don't Heal and How They Can; Spiritual Madness; and Spiritual Power, Spiritual Practice (Sounds True). Her work is featured on her popular website myss.com. She lives in Oak Park, Illinois..

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Foreword

Entering the Castle is many things: a guide to the life and times of St. Teresa of Ávila, the extraordinary sixteenth-century saint and contemplative master; a guide to her brilliant meditation text, The Interior Castle; and, last but certainly not least, a guide to your soul -- a beautiful, tender, radiant, caring, loving, and authentic guide to the territory of your soul.

Mysticism in general and contemplation in particular are such staggeringly vast and often confusing topics that, especially if one is new to either of them, they can prove lethally overwhelming to the soul, right when it is looking for something, if not exactly simplistic, then at least simple enough to ground what might be its confusion, chaos, perhaps fear, perhaps suffering. What I would like to do, then, in just a few pages, is offer the reader some simple experiential reference points that might help to ground some of the central ideas of mystical or contemplative spirituality. I will first give seven of the most central ideas of mysticism and then attempt to give the reader a very quick, direct, experiential grounding in each of them.

The central ideas, if discussed merely theoretically, can sound rather dry and abstract. Here are the seven central ideas: (1) each of us has an outer self and an inner self; (2) the inner self lives in a timeless, eternal now; (3) the inner self is a great mystery, or pure emptiness and unknowingness; (4) the inner self is divine, or perfectly one with infinite spirit in a supreme identity; (5) hell is identification with the outer self; (6) heaven is the discovery and realization of the inner divine self,the supreme identity; (7) the divine self is one with the all, given in grace and sealed in glory.

Now, let's go in search of an experience of each of those items in just a few pages. Tall order? Not really, for you are already aware of, and fully experiencing, each of those items right now, according to the mystics. So let's see.

I

First, sit back and relax, take a few breaths, then let your awareness come easily to rest in this present moment and simply notice some of the things that you are aware of, right here and right now.

Notice, for example, some of the many things that you can see, things that are already arising effortlessly in your awareness. There are perhaps clouds floating by in the sky, leaves blowing in the wind, raindrops on the roof, the city skyline all brightly lighted against the evening's darkness, or the sun shining brightly on the horizon as it is about to begin its journey across the sky. These things take no effort to be aware of; they are simply arising in your awareness, spontaneously and effortlessly, right now.

Just as there are clouds floating by in the sky, there are thoughts floating by in the space of your mind. Notice that these thoughts arise, stay a bit, and pass. You don't choose most of them; thoughts simply emerge out of what seems to be nothingness or emptiness, parade across the screen of your awareness, and fade back into nothingness. The same with feelings in your body. There might be a sensation of discomfort in my feet; a feeling of warmth in my tummy; a tingling in my fingertips; an intense burst of excitement around my heart; a warm pleasure washing over my body. All these feelings simply arise of their own, stay a bit, and pass.

As I look inward, noticing thoughts and feelings arising in the inner spaces of my own awareness, I can also notice this thing called me or my self. There are many things I might know about myself -- some of which I might be pleased with, some of which I might be annoyed with, and some of which I might find positively horrifying or alarming. But whatever I might think about this thing called my self, it certainly seems that there are numerous things I can know about it.

There even seem to be several of these selves, a fact announced by a plethora of pop psychology books. There is my wounded child; my harsh superego; my cynical and even bitter skeptic; my ever-present controller, seeking to control both me and everybody else; my wise old man and wise old woman; my spiritual seeker; my fearful persona, which lets fear make too many of my life's choices for me; the joyous persona, finding a constant current of joy and happiness in this and every moment; to name a prominent few....

But notice something fascinating about all these selves: They are all something that I can see, that I can be aware of, that I can feel and know and describe, in many ways. They can all be seen -- but who or what is the seer? All those selves, which I just looked within, saw, and felt, and then described -- are objects that can be seen: But what is the subject, the actual self, the actual seer of those seen things, the true knower of those known things?

Get a good sense of yourself right now -- just try to be aware of what you call "yourself" right now. Try to see or feel yourself as clearly as you can. Notice that, once you get a sense of seeing or feeling or being aware of yourself right now, what you are seeing is an object, not a true subject. That is, the self that you are seeing -- the self that you call yourself and that you take to be a real self -- is actually an object. It's not even a real self or real subject, but simply an object or something that can be seen. Everything that you know about yourself, everything that you are used to calling yourself, is not actually a self or a real subject but just a bunch of objects, a bunch of things that can be seen. But who or what is the seer, the real subject or real self?

To begin with, don't try to see your true self, because anything that you can see is just another object, just another thing that can be seen, and not the seer itself. As the mystics are fond of saying, the true self is not this, not that. Rather, as you attempt to get in touch with this real self or subject, just begin by letting go of all the objects that you have previously identified with. Anything that you can see or know about yourself is not your true self anyway, but just another object, so let it go, just let it go, and begin instead to disidentify with whatever you thought was yourself. Try this exercise, saying to yourself:

"I have thoughts, but I am not my thoughts. I have feelings, but I am not my feelings. I have desires, but I am not desires. I have wishes, but I am not those wishes. I have intense pleasure and excruciating pain, but I am neither of those. I have a body, but I am not my body. I have a mind, but I am not my mind. All those can be seen, but I am the seer; all those can be known, but I am the knower; all those are merely objects, but I am a real subject or true self, not any passing parts and pieces and objects and things. I am not thoughts, not feelings, not desires, not body, not mind, not this, not that.

So who or what am I?

Before proceeding, let's say that, according to the evidence of our experience right now, we have at least two selves, or two sorts of selves -- there is the self that can be seen and known, and the self that cannot be seen or known. There is the unknown seer, and there are all the little selves seen. Philosophers have some fancy words for this: the transcendental self (or pure I AMness, which can never be an object, seen or known) and the empirical self (or the empirical ego, which can be seen, known, experienced, and objectified).

Even though the transcendental seer cannot itself be seen -- that would be just another object -- it nevertheless sees the entire majesty in front of its eyes: Unseen, it sees all; unknown, it knows all; unfelt, it feels all.

For this reason, the true self is often called the witness: It witnesses all that is occurring but cannot itself be turned into an object -- as a true subject, it cannot be objectified. It is also called the mirror mind -- it effortlessly and spontaneously reflects everything that arises, but does not grasp or keep. The true self is, in some sense, a deep mystery, something that can never be seen, and yet it sees the entire universe in front of it. It is a vast emptiness, and yet out of it the entire world seems to spring.

For the moment, please keep asking yourself, "What is this self of mine?" Keep trying to feel into that question, keep trying to think the thinker, feel the feeler, and see the seer. As you proceed in that fashion, asking yourself, "Who am I?" and gently letting go of all the objects that you thought you were, and as you keep trying to see the seer, you actually won't see anything specific -- you won't see any particular things or processes or events or objects (or, if you do, they're just more objects -- exactly what you are not trying to find). Rather, as you keep relaxing into the seer, all you will find is a sense of release from objects, release from the small and narrow identities with objects that you used to call you. All you will find, in other words, is not another object but an atmosphere of freedom, liberation, and release -- release from the pain and torment of identifying with a bunch of little objects that come, stay a bit, and pass, lacerating you in the process. According to the mystics, the closer you get to your true self, the greater the sense of infinite freedom.

As I rest in the unknown knower, in this pure self or witness, I might notice something else about this self: It doesn't move -- it isn't touched by time or motion, date or duration. This transparent witness is aware of time, hence itself is timeless, or existing in the timeless now. The witness is aware of past thoughts, but past thoughts occur now; and the witness is aware of future thoughts, but future thoughts occur now -- and when the real past occurred, it was a now moment, and when the real future occurs, it will be a now moment. The only thing the witness is aware of, the only thing that is real, is an endless present, a single now moment through which time passes, but it is not itself touched by time at all, yet rather lives in eternity. And eternity does not mean everlasting time but a moment without time. Wittgenstein saw it clearly: "If we take eternity to mean not infinite temporal duration but timelessness, eternal life belongs to those who live in the present."

So there's another hint: The closer you get to your true self, the more you live in eternity; the more you live in the timeless present, which includes thoughts of the past, the present, and the future, all occurring in the timeless now. So think about the past and future all you want: Just watch them arise in the present.

At this point, the contemplative mystics make one of their most controversial claims, so controversial as to seem almost psychotic, and yet they do so in one thundering voice the world over; they make this identical claim from every known culture, at every known period of recorded history, and in every known human language, and they do this so consistently and so unanimously that this claim is very likely the single most universal spiritual claim that humanity has ever made: The closer you get to your true self, the closer you get to God. And when you totally realize the true self, it is seen to be fully one with, even identical with, God or the Godhead or spirit itself, in what the Sufis call the supreme identity.

Now, this clearly does not mean that your empirical self is God, or that John Doe is God or Jane Smith is the Goddess; it means that your transcendental self -- your infinite and eternal self -- is God or spirit. Or, put a little more accurately, spirit is not in any fashion separate or separated from the transcendental self of all sentient beings. The transcendental self in every sentient being is spirit in that being, and spirit is the true self of all beings. And that means that 100 percent of spirit is present in your true self, in your deeply inward, radiant sense of I AMness.

Let's pause and look at our list of the mystics' claims, because we have already touched on most of them:

1. We each have an outer self and an inner self. We saw that the outer self (or the empirical ego) is the self that can be seen, while the inner self (or transcendental self) can never be made an object or thing of any sort, but rather is, among other items, a sense of freedom and a great liberation from the known, from the finite, and from the empirical ego.

2. The inner self lives in a timeless, eternal now. Eternity does not mean everlasting time, but a moment without time, which happens to be exactly this moment, when seen correctly as an endless present encompassing all time. The true self is aware of this ever-present, never-ending, eternal moment, through which all time passes -- and, while never entering the stream of time itself, remains as its unmoved witness.

3. The inner self is a great mystery, or pure emptiness and unknowingness. Precisely because it can never be known or made an object, the true self is no-thing-ness, pure mysterium, an ongoing unknown knowingness, or cognizing emptiness, or simply, the great mystery of your own being.

4. The inner self is divine, or perfectly one with infinite spirit in a supreme identity. As St. Thomas put it, if the eyeball were colored red, it couldn't see red; but because it is clear or redless or colorless, it can see colors. Just so, because the inner self sees space, it is itself spaceless, or infinite; and because it sees time, it is itself timeless, or eternal. And this infinite and eternal self is the home of spirit in you and in each and every sentient being. The overall number of inner selves is but one. Every person feels exactly the way you do when he feels into his own witness or I AMness: Since the true self has no objects or qualities, it can't be different in anybody; it is the same radiant divine shining in you and me and all of spirit's creations.

5. Hell is identification with the outer self. Hell is not a place; hell is not somewhere that we go when we are dead; hell is not punishment handed out to us by something or someone else -- it is rather our contracting, sinning, separating activity of choosing the wrong self to identify with. We identify with that which we are not, we identify merely and only with the empirical ego, the self that can be seen; and that puny, finite, temporal, limited, and lacerating identity is nothing other than hell. Hell is a horrendous case of mistaken identity. We have forgotten who and what we are, a transcendental self plugged straight into spirit, speaking with the words of God and shining with the radiance of the Goddess. But we identify only with the finite self, the objective self, the self that can be seen, and not the self that is the seer, divine and infinite and eternal.

6. Heaven is the discovery and realization of the inner divine self, the supreme identity. The mystics East and West have long proclaimed that the Kingdom of Heaven is within -- because the simple fact is that I AMness is Christ Consciousness, spirit itself, the Godhead in me and as me. The true self in each and every one of us is the true self that Jesus of Nazareth realized -- "I and the Father are one" -- and that realization, quite simply, transformed him from a temporal Jesus into an eternal Christ, a transformation that he asks us to remember and repeat ourselves.

Of course, this does not mean that my empirical ego is Christ, or that my personal self is Christ. To believe that is, indeed, a schizophrenic delusion. Nobody is saying that my personal self is spirit, but rather that the transcendental witness of that personal self is one with spirit in all beings. Your transcendental self is Christ; your personal self is you.

7. The divine self is one with the all, given in grace and sealed in glory. At some point, as one rests in the inward witness, feeling the atmosphere of freedom, the very sense of an inner self versus an outer self will often vanish, seen for the illusion it is, leaving only the sense of what the mystics call one taste. My transcendental self gives way to nondual suchness, or what Meister Eckhart called "Is-ness." For spirit is not only the self of all beings, but the such-ness or is-ness or thus-ness of all things. To freedom from any object is thus added the fullness of being one with all objects. I no longer witness the mountains, I am the mountains; I no longer feel the Earth, I am the Earth; I no longer see the ocean, I am the ocean; I no longer pray to spirit, I am spirit. So seamlessly does the world, sacred and profane, arise in one piece that I can find no boundary -- not a single fundamentally real boundary -- anywhere in the entire universe. There is only the radiant, all-pervading, deeply divine I AMness, within which all the worlds arise and fall, are born and die, explode into being and fade in oblivion, carried along by the one and only thing that is always ever present, even unto the ends of the world: this ultimate mystery in emptiness and release, freedom, and fullness, ground and goal, grace and glory, this self of mine that I can no longer find, as the raindrops in their insistent is-ness beat gently on the roof, a beautiful sound of heartbeat thunder, thump, thump, thump, thump, just...like...that...

I

What we need is a road map, a guidebook, leading from our egos to our transcendental self, one with the divine, grounded in such-ness or is-ness. Around the world, every culture has produced many of these guidebooks, but every culture has a select handful that are venerated above all the others. In the West, it is hard to find a text that is more loved and revered than Teresa of Ávila's Interior Castle. Most contemplative traditions have meditation paths that consist of a number of well laid out steps for moving from the hell of our outer selves to the heaven of the divine self (and ultimately their nondual union). Teresa's seven mansions -- each of which, in the following pages, is explained by Caroline Myss in beautiful, clear, radiant language -- these seven mansions are nothing other than seven steps in this extraordinary path to your own deepest self, or soul, realized in the cloud of unknowing, given by unearned and unexplained grace, and actualized in daily living -- an actualization that deepens as this very moment dissolves into the moment of the divine revelation, right here, right now, with this Earth radically transformed from a living hell into a living heaven, the more time is seen as the moving face of eternity, and outward selves, as ornaments of the divine self and radiant such-ness of all the worlds and universes.

Want to find out if those essential points of mysticism that we have so briefly outlined here are, in fact, true? Well, I will tell you the final thing that I personally love about genuine contemplative mysticism: It is scientific -- in the sense of experimental, experiential, and evidential. Try Teresa's seven-step interior experiment as taught in Entering the Castle, and see for yourself. It's an interior scientific experiment. Entering the Castle is fully based on St. Teresa's seven interior mansions, which are explained and elaborated here so beautifully, so clearly, so compassionately, so lightheartedly, so wondrously by my friend Caroline Myss, for whom dearest St. Teresa became not only a spiritual woman who had written a brilliant practice manual, but a saint who saved Caroline's life, showed her her soul, awakened her heart, and set her on the never-ending, always-actualizing, timelessly fulfilled road of practice.

And, dear Caroline, I just know that St. Teresa would say "amen" to this luminous book as the fruit of her calling to you, a calling to all of us to be mystics without monasteries in a world sorely in need of a touch of the divine -- divine God, divine Goddess -- the true self in each and every one of us, the self looking out at this page and reading every word written on the suchness of its own heart, which you can hear anytime you like, and especially every time it rains, echoing in the beautiful sound of heartbeat thunder, thump, thump, thump, thump, just...like...that....

-- Ken Wilber

Copyright © 2007 by Caroline Myss

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Table of Contents

Foreword   Ken Wilber     13
A Far Too Personal Preface     31
Introduction: The Call     47
Preparing for the Journey     61
Mystics without Monasteries     63
Contemporary Mystics     80
Teresa of Avila's Significance     95
Why Now?     98
Approaching the Castle: Readying the Soul     105
Recognizing Your Soul's Voice     113
Soul Qualities     119
The Deeper Path: Self-Examination and Contemplation     134
Unveiling God: The Four Veils of God     141
Crossing the Drawbridge: The Key to the Castle     157
Spiritual Detachment     171
And Then There Are the Reptiles     179
Transitioning between Worlds     181
Shall You Cross the Drawbridge?     184
The Soul's Journey     187
The First Mansion: The Power of Prayer, Humility, Chaos, and Divine Seduction     189
Prayers for the Castle     192
The Stages of Prayer     196
The Power of Humility     204
Rooms for Refining Humility     213
The Pull of Two Worlds: Divine Guidance and Divine Chaos     239
Exploring Chaos in Your Soul     245
Divine Seduction     264
Rooms for Finding God     267
Leaving the Castle     283
The Second Mansion: God in the Details: Inner Vision and Soul Companions     284
The Practice of Illumination     301
Rooms of Inner Vision and Purification     309
Soul Companions     324
Exploring Spiritual Companionships     334
Commitment to God     346
Exploring Your Commitment to the Divine     350
The Third Mansion: Surrender: The Defeat of Reason/The Presence of God     355
The Defeat of Reason     365
The Rooms of Reason     377
The Archetypal Desert in the Soul     394
Contemplations in the Desert     399
The Fourth Mansion: The Mystical Heart     407
Into the Heart of the Sacred     408
Prepare to Receive God     415
The Power of Your Cosmic Soul     420
Rooms for Receiving God     425
The Prayer of Recollection: Soul Flight     439
The Fifth Mansion: Dissolving into Holiness: From Silkworm to Butterfly     445
Living in a Higher State     449
Dissolving Into Your Soul     457
Rooms to Practice Dissolving into the Soul      462
Characteristics of a Mystical Experience     473
Rooms with a Mystical View     475
Into Flight: The Silkworm Becomes the Butterfly     480
Mystical Marriage     483
The Sixth Mansion: Essential Wisdoms and the Final Fire     485
Five Essential Wisdoms about Praise and Criticism     489
Rooms of Gifts     493
On Suffering     502
Rooms of Secrets     504
Be Mindful of Evil     507
Characteristics of Mystical Experiences     508
Rooms with Divine Communications     519
The Experience of Holy Rapture     521
Authentic Contemplation     525
The Seventh Mansion: Divine Marriage, Healing, and Reentering the World     528
The Mystical Trinity Revealed     534
The Mystical Roots of Healing     540
Healing Rooms     547
The Tranquil Soul     551
A Return to the World     553
Taking Leave     557
Essential Guidance for Mystics Outside the Castle Walls     560
Bibliography     569
Acknowledgments     581
About the Author     587
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 21 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 2, 2007

    Mystical Writing

    'Entering the Castle' is intended as a guide into mysticism. The idea presented in the book is to become mystics without monastaries. This requires answering three key questions: (1) Why was I born? (2) What is my greater purpose in my life? (3) How can I be of service? The Castle spoken of in this book is our inner center - a place where can find sanctuary, peace and guidance. Through contemplation we can access this Castle within. The ideas in this book are based on St. Theresa of Avila's THE INTERIOR CASTLE, where she mentions seven mansions i.e. stages through which the soul passes in its mystical journey to union with the Divine. 'Entering the Castle' gives an inner dimension to our spiritual work that is at times lacking in current spiritual literature, which is more concerned with achievement and prosperity as end goals rather than inner development of the self. So I am glad to come across this book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 30, 2008

    Myss goes too far

    There is a specific context for Teresa's teaching and writing. Also, Myss fails to qualify key elements of Mystical Theology with reference to Theresa of Avila. One must first die a spiritual death, and commit themselves to a spiritual community like the DC Carmelites. Given this pre-condition, Theresa instructed them on purification (which was not pleasant btw) to rid all human-ness from ones entire being. It is a practice, a way of life that when followed¿there is divine union, love, and suffering in Christ. Academics and theologians might take a year to understand the nature of Mystical Theology in a specific context. It¿s not about you and feeling good for you¿not about finding your purpose. Far too general definition on contemplation. Completely lacks thorough study on the senses, the mind, the appetites, attachments, and reason. Mystics w/out monasteries can contact a local secular community, commit to the way of life, or live amongst the community. These communities have preserved/lived a specific way for centuries. If you must borrow from their doctrine, at least give back to their community.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2007

    Enter...discover yourself

    Entering the Castle has showed me where my treasure is... within. I experienced entering my own castle and it continues to be quite a journey. Caroline's passion is so embedded into this work, that it is hard for me to read accusations of her being too 'preachy' or 'condescending'. Rather, I see a woman who has experienced the Divine and who demands of herself and the listener the utmost reverence and gratitude for the journey itself. She has judgments like we all do, but please realize that this journey is not about what you can create or get, but instead, it is about going into yourself and dialoguing with the GOD presence within to find out how you can be of service to yourself, the people around you and the world, by becoming a channel for grace!!! Manifestation is awesome, but this work's purpose is not to teach you or help you manifest. If that's what you're looking for then watch 'The Secret' or read ' The Science of Getting Rich' . If you are aching for a deeper communion with your soul and God, then look no further. A direct connection with your soul is beyond words! Blessings to all.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 28, 2010

    Oh I Am So Excited...

    ...to be the first one to say just what I thought of this book. Caroline Myss, author of such books as Anatomy of Spirit and Why People Don't Heal, brings us a very different part of the metaphysical world. For this book, she discusses the work of Theresa of Avila, with whom she alleges she communicated with while she was writing the book. Dubious as it may sound, it is all the rage within the New Age community right now with Esther and Jerry Hicks' Abraham making communicating with the nonphysical all the more popular (though do not be mistaken. Myss does not endorse the Hicks' work). Yes, once an authority of Chakras and touting a PhD in Energy Medicine (which has surprisingly disappeared since the unaccredited nature of her doctorate program was discovered). There is enough spiritual work in this book to last you a lifetime, but do not be so eager to hop on board. Myss makes it clear that even if you do all this material, you still may not feel the grace of God. In fact, you may not even receive that healing you so desire. She makes it clear that the world of healing is irrational and asks you to leave behind critical thinking and to exchange it with irrational thought. And even if you surrender completely to this irrational thought, God may very well not bestow his grace upon you. So what's the perk of following this? Beats me. You can have Myss acting higher than thou for hundreds of pages and preaching to you about all the things you are doing wrong in your life. Watch this woman and it is clear that there is nothing enlightened about her, so be wary of her words and do not be so willing to throw yourself down this rabbit hole.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 25, 2010

    A Good Effort

    The author, Caroline Myss has done a good job of taking on the very difficult task of interpretting Saint Teresa of Ávila's spiritual work "The Interior Castle". Ms Myss has taken a document orinally written by Saint Theresa in 16th-century Spain, and used her own interpretations and experiences to bring these writings into the 21st century.

    While I never could last long with a translation of Saint Theresa's original writing, I found the author's version very readable and engaging.
    However I would have to say that absorbing the subject matter of this book, which is basically getting in touch with one's soul by dividing it into rooms and studying each room before moving on to the next, is not a simple matter to accomplish.
    The author herself is a Theology teacher and author of several spiritual books, and yet it took her many years of study and soul developement before she was at a spiritual point in her life when she could fully absorb the message of Saint Teresa.
    So the question is should you as a person, interested in expanding their spiritual growth, buy this book?
    If you are at all interested in Saint Teresa or have had some experience with spiritual study, then you may be interested in purchasing this book. I doubt many people will be able to quickly master the Saint's methodology, however if you are patient and refer back to the book from time to time, you may also realize a greater understanding of your soul and God.

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  • Posted April 17, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Anonymous Caroline a spiritual teacher now turn into a political partisan sharp tongue columnist says it all. How can you spew such rhetoric and hate and be a spiritual teacher. I could not recommend this book.

    How can I put my faith and trust into this book after reading that post. It literally sickened my stomach that I used my hard earned money to help pave the way for her to do more of her bidding. She should be ashamed of herself but her ego will never allow it.

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 28, 2009

    A compassionate, wise view of the mystical tradition

    Carolyn shares a thoughtful, modern examination of St Teresa of Avila's claasic text.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2007

    Enter...discover yourself

    Entering the Castle has showed me where my treasure is... within. I experienced entering my own castle and it continues to be quite a journey. Caroline's passion is so embedded into this work, that it is hard for me to read accusations of her being too 'preachy' or 'condescending'. Rather, I see a woman who has experienced the Divine and who demands of herself and the listener the utmost reverence and gratitude for the journey itself. She has judgments like we all do, but please realize that this journey is not about what you can create or get, but instead, it is about going into yourself and dialoguing with the GOD presence within to find out how you can be of service to yourself, the people around you and the world, by becoming a channel for grace!!! Manifestation is awesome, but this work's purpose is not to teach you or help you manifest. If that's what you're looking for then watch 'The Secret' or read ' The Science of Getting Rich' . If you are aching for a deeper communion with your soul and God, then look no further. A direct connection with your soul is beyond words! Blessings to all.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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