Teresa of Ávila: The Book of My Life

Teresa of Ávila: The Book of My Life

by Mirabai Starr
     
 

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She was the last person anyone would have expected to become a nun, yet she became one of the most famous nuns of all time. She was a brilliant administrator in a world where such vocations were all but closed to women. And above all she combined an astonishing proclivity for ecstatic union with God with down-to-earth practicality and good humor. Teresa of Ávila … See more details below

Overview

She was the last person anyone would have expected to become a nun, yet she became one of the most famous nuns of all time. She was a brilliant administrator in a world where such vocations were all but closed to women. And above all she combined an astonishing proclivity for ecstatic union with God with down-to-earth practicality and good humor. Teresa of Ávila (1515-1582) is one of the most beloved of the Catholic saints. Her texts of spiritual instruction, such as The Interior Castle and The Way of Perfection, speak so plainly and eloquently about the interior life that they have become undisputed classics, studied by people of many faiths. In 1562, at the request 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.  

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Any occasion to renew one's acquaintance with St. Teresa of Avila (1515�82) is a cause for celebration: who could have imagined that a Doctor of the Church would have been such good company, in her remaining writings, to so many? Admired and studied by theologians, literary critics, feminists, and the devout, Teresa wrote this memoir at the direction of the Spanish Inquisition, and it mixes her account of her own life and career in the Church with advice on the spiritual life. Starr's translation is the first new translation into English for 40 years and the first by a woman, and its easy fluency captures Teresa's conversational enthusiasm most effectively. Highly recommended. [See Q&A p. 84.�Ed.]


—Graham Christian

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781590303658
Publisher:
Shambhala Publications, Inc.
Publication date:
02/13/2007
Pages:
336
Product dimensions:
6.47(w) x 9.29(h) x 1.21(d)

Meet the Author

Mirabai Starr is an adjunct professor of philosophy and religious studies at the University of New Mexico. She has studied a wide variety of religious traditions, including Hinduism, Judaism, Buddhism, and Christianity. She is also the translator of Teresa of Ávila’s Interior Castle and The Dark Night of the Soul by John of the Cross. She lives in Taos, New Mexico.

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