On Mortification and the Appeal of Asceticism

The concentration of the mortification of the body is disconcerting to the modern reader, who attaches an infinitely greater value to the life of the mind.  But it arises from a simple and obvious factor: it was precisely the external aspects of asceticism that were visible and manifest to the lay observer.  The monastic lifestyle excited veneration principally because  it proved that human limitations could be overcome, and man participate in the life of angels.  The great champions of the monastic movement were those who attained such victory over the flesh that they lived for decades almost without sleep and with a minimum of food; it was the sight of this that demonstrated that theyhad transcended the human conditions, and could be presumed to enjoy a perfect life of prayer, a constant access to God.

– R. M. Price, 1985

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~ by alexmalina on February 9, 2009.

3 Responses to “On Mortification and the Appeal of Asceticism”

  1. Hello, perhaps you might be interested in my new site on matters pertaining to medieval pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela. It features clips of Romanesque sculpture
    Regards artsymbolo

  2. Hi artsymbol

    Yes I would be very interested! What is the link?

    Kind regards,
    Alex

  3. nevermind, i found your site, it is very interesting

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