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Do Not Be Upset. Do Not Be Afraid. Even If Everything is Changing. (Teresa of Avila)

“The Bookmark of Teresa of Jesus”

Let Nothing Upset You, Let Nothing Frighten You - Teresa of AvilaDo not be upset.
Do not be afraid.

Everything is changing.
God alone is changeless.

Patience attains the goal.
Who has God has everything.
God alone meets all our needs.

It Deals with Three C’s –

Calm, Context, Conquering

Lines 1-2: Calm:

Live in calm, live unafraid.
These 2 lines are the human application.

Lines 3-4: Context:

These remaining 5 lines are just a scientific (observational) description of reality.  Lines 3 and 4 describe our true situation.


  •  A World of constant instability,
    Always uncertainty, always things and situations shifting, disappearing, sometimes reappearing.
    Lots of change.
  •  Except – God,
    Who is constant beyond our ability to explain,
    and perhaps to imagine.

Lines 5-7: Conquering:

Lines 5 through 7 illumine the practice of victory.  In Revelation chapters 2 and 3 much good is promised “to the one who overcomes.”  Teresa gives us good guidance for “overcoming.”

That is: Because of, or in spite of, the constantly changing context in this life:

Settle down on God.

Practice being there just to be there – for its own sake.
Attend there, hope there;
be there in now and all through the future.
By this patience you will save your soul
and much around you.
In this calm
and fearlessness
you will find all.

So says Teresa.  I believe she’s right.

Teresa's Bookmark. Live in calm, live unafraid. Her first 2 lines are the human application. The other 5 lines are just a scientific (observational) description of reality.Click To Tweet

This is sometimes called “The Bookmark of Teresa”; I don’t know why.  I have memorized this and recite it to myself several times every week.

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