08 Carmel  Captivates - The Carmelites

posted Jul 11, 2018, 11:02 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated Jul 11, 2018, 11:02 AM ]

Spiritual Marriage – an Interior Option at the service of humanity!

Queen Beauty of Carmel, Mary our Mother, bursts into exultant praise of God: ‘My soul glorifies the Lord...’, in response to the admiration of her kinswoman Elizabeth. With Mary, every Carmelite’s spirit rejoices in God; for to be led into the land of Carmel is to enter upon a journey culminating “so close to God, that a soul is transformed into a flame of love, in which the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are communicated to it… that it enjoys a foretaste of eternal life.” The Blessed Virgin Mary of Mt Carmel, in the famous ‘scapular promise’ assures all who die wearing it, eternal life. What she really wishes is that (rather than wait to deliver a soul from purgatory after death), we begin experiencing eternal life already here on Earth. Two mystical doctors of the Church - Saints Teresa of Avila and John of the Cross - Carmelites, teach us of these mystical heights which all the baptised are invited to, yet so few arrive at. Indeed, has not St Paul himself said that the Holy Spirit reveals to those who love God those things no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor heart conceived, things which God has prepared for those who love Him? (cf. 1 Cor 2:9,10)

“Each one of us has a soul, but since we do not prize souls as is deserved by creatures made in the image of God, we do not understand the deep secrets that lie in them,” says St Teresa. In the state of Spiritual Marriage which is the highest attainable in this life, ‘all three divine Persons communicate themselves to the soul, speak to it, and explain the words of the Gospel that He (Jesus - the Word) and the Father and the Holy Spirit will come and dwell with the soul that loves Him and keeps His commandments. God dwells secretly in all souls (even those in mortal sin), or else they would not last. In the soul in which less of its own appetites and pleasures dwell (i.e. love of and desire for material things, obsession with food, fashion, trends, sport, entertainment, distractions, etc.), He dwells pleased, rejoicing as a Bridegroom over his bride (cf Is 62:4 ff). ‘O then, soul, most beautiful among all creatures, rejoice to see that all your good is so close as to be within you or better that you cannot be without Him. What more do you want? – It will never satisfy. What else do you search for outside – zapping, zapping and more zapping – ‘when within you possess all your riches, delights, satisfactions, fullness, and kingdom’? Like the wise merchant (Mt 13:44), sell all you possess i.e. forget your possessions, internet and apps, all created things which pass away, hide in the secret chamber of your spirit. There, close the door, which is your will or desire for everything else, and pray to your Father in secret (Mt 6:6). You will experience Him, love, enjoy and delight with Him in a way transcending all language and feeling. Yes, ‘the Almighty works marvels – Holy is He’; hear His call to holiness.