February 5, June 6, October 6
Chapter 7: On Humility
The eighth degree of humility
is that a monk do nothing except what is commended
by the common Rule of the monastery
and the example of the elders.
Please allow me to confess that I do not like to write about humility because I don’t believe I have it or that I know what I am talking about.
A monastic is to do nothing except what is in the community’s rule and to imitate fellow monastics. Rules vary from community to community, of course. I’ve read some that are quite short and others that are quite long. Generally speaking, all rules have the same goal: to aid people to live a holy life, a spiritual life, and to seek this together.
The monastic submits to the community’s rule. The monastic doesn’t seek to fulfil her or his own personal desires, but to seek God’s will, God’s purpose. The monastic obeys the rule because in doing so, the monastic obeys God.