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Juan De Ávila And The Audi, Filia Of 1556 As A Manual For Holy Women

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Chapter Summary

The realization of Juan De Ávilas appeal among noble Andalusian women helps us place his 1556 Audi, filia in the right perspective. Many of Ávila's women disciples came from a noble background; a few came from some of the most prestigious families in Spain. Several of Ávila's women disciples became beatas, or lay holy women. At the time most women who decided to become beatas did so because they lacked the dowry that would allow them to enter a convent. In Juan De Ávila, the problem of knowledge of self and knowledge of God is resolved in the practice of mental prayer. The methodical and disciplined exercise of mental prayer is the path to the encounter between human and divine. Ana Ponce de León wrote several accounts of her visions and experiences that constitute the only known examples of a womans direct reception of Ávilas method of mental prayer.

Keywords: Ana Ponce de León; holy women; Juan De Ávila; mental prayer



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