Monday, July 6, 2009

The Prayer of Recollection

"This prayer is called 'recollection,' because the soul collects its faculties together and enters within itself to be with its God." The Way of Perfection (28:4)

To attain the habit of recollection it is necessary to train the faculties, that is, the senses both exterior and interior, from flitting about while at prayer. St. Teresa suggests that when at prayer the eyes should close thus keeping the soul from looking at things of the world. This habit takes some effort at first, but soon the habit is strengthened and the senses will obey and when the soul wishes to it will become recollected. This all takes practice and diligence. The body will rebel because it always wants to seek what it normally seeks; the eyes want to see, the ears want to hear. The imagination is always churning out something. When at prayer and finding the faculties are scattering, the soul should gently deny them their "rights" and give the command to return within and continue to pray.

"Those who by such a method can enclose themselves within this little heaven of our soul, where the Maker of heaven and earth is present, and grow accustomed to refusing to be where the exterior senses in their distraction have gone or look in that direction should believe they are following an excellent path and that they will not fail to drink the water from the fount." The Way of Perfection (28:5)

St. John of the Cross reminds in his Sayings of Light and Love #52 that "if you wish to attain holy recollection, you will do so not by receiving but by denying".


  1. This is a beautiful blog, I am so glad I found it.I was born on Oct.15th and St. Teresa is my patron saint. I have received many graces through her intercession and her books have really touched me.

  2. Thanks for your kind remarks. St. Teresa is great! No matter how many times I read her writings there is always something that jumps out and speaks to me. She is a great teacher and is amazingly still teaching souls 400+ years later.

  3. St. Teresa of Avila is my chosen Saint this year. I also have a first class relic with a piece of bone. Her simplicity is so wonderful and easy to understand. I love your posts!
    God bless,