Chapter 7: On Humility, October 3, 2016

February 2, June 3, October 3
Chapter 7: On Humility

The fifth degree of humility
is that he hide from his Abbot none of the evil thoughts
that enter his heart
or the sins committed in secret,
but that he humbly confess them.
The Scripture urges us to this when it says,
“Reveal your way to the Lord and hope in Him” (Ps. 36:5)
and again,
“Confess to the Lord, for He is good,
for His mercy endures forever” (Ps. 105:1).
And the Prophet likewise says,
“My offense I have made known to You,
and my iniquities I have not covered up.
I said: ‘I will declare against myself my iniquities to the Lord;’
and ‘You forgave the wickedness of my heart'” (Ps. 31:5).

Some thoughts:

Whom do you have in your life with whom you can be as honest as in this passage? Do you even want to be this honest? There’s a question of trust, isn’t there?
 
Seems to me there are some good ideas for those of us who don’t live in a monastic community. What Abba Benedict writes here is simply stuff that applies to all healthy relationships. Certainly, we don’t have to spill 100% of our beans to every person we meet, but surely this applies to our closest relationships. How much discord might be prevented if we engaged at this level of intimacy with those we love the most.
 
How much second guessing and assumptions could be eliminated if we simply chose to be up front with each other?

 

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