Monastic life began in the first centuries of the inquisition and the spread of Christianity. The believer’s soul is constantly striving to overcome itself, to acquire a life like that of angels. He desires his and fellow human beings’ happiness by continually striving for perfection and closeness to God.
The Monastic Life (from the Greek term μοναχος – meaning a single, unattached person) is the ancient practice of Christians to leave the world to devote themselves body and soul to a life in conformity with the Gospel, seeking union with Jesus Christ. The goal of monasticism is the deification of man (in Greek, theosis), to which all Christians are called.
Seeking God’s will above all else is an idea that appears everywhere in Orthodox writings. Such as in the Philokalia, a book of essays by monks. In other words, a monk (monk) or nun (nun, nun) is a person who has vowed to follow not only the Church’s commandments. But also the evangelical counsels “vows” or monastic vows of poverty. Chastity, purity, steadfastness, and obedience. The words of Christ on which this way of life is based are: “Be perfect as your Father is perfect.”
What are the main elements of monastic life?
Thus, monks are engaged in the spiritual struggle on the path of purification (καθαρσις) and contemplation (θεωρια). And deification or union with God (θεωσις) through prayer, Holy Mysteries, and obedience.
The monastic believers who have thirsted after acquiring this state have found the basis. And the main elements of monastic life in the spiritual ascents. Even in the life and teaching of the Saviour Christ. They saw in His humble and “sinless” life (II Peter 2:22) in His tender mercy towards the people of His time. Whom He served, comforted, and helped with the love of a father and brother, in His “obedience unto death” (Phil. 2:8), the most precious spiritual law.
Monastic life is, therefore, the ultimate form taken by the confession of the Christian faith and placed by the Holy Spirit in the heart of the Church. It is neither a particular doctrine of Christianity nor a step of perfection in the faith but a living image of Christian confession that recalls or represents the premises of faith. In response to the descent of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. All left their possessions, kinship ties, and home to unite with the apostles, according to the teaching of the Lord.
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Who lives a monastic life?
Monk means beautiful face, spiritual face; he has another activity, another age, another food, another clothing, and another work. He is called a wearer of black garments, for his whole life must be repentance and resignation. He is called a monk, that is, a loner, because he must be forever carefree and alone with God.
Monastic life is lived with holiness by monks. Who choose to devote themselves entirely to God. A monk must live on earth as in heaven.
The monk must find as much time as possible to stand before God. Not with an open book on the table, with a lighted candle, with a candle. But with an open heart for God, thinking of God.
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What is a monastic person?
Monastics don’t find their place in the mentality of the modern world. Monks are either unknown, misunderstood, despised, or ignored by almost everyone, even though they are appreciated and even loved by those who truly understand. For some, the monk’s existence is a comfort; for others, like a prick in the conscience.
Monastic people have devoted their lives entirely to God and the monastery. They are renouncing the world and all it offers and staying away from every lust of the flesh.
In the eyes of some, monks are useless, dusty relics of a meaningless past; in the eyes of others, they are prophetic witnesses to the world. Be that as it may, it is a characteristic of the monk that none of the above means much to him. Nevertheless, he senses the call from God and goes forward, following it.
Read also: Enoch walked with God for 300 years.
How to live like a monk?
Monasticism or monasticism is a practice in all the world’s major religions. However, the life of a monk is not for everyone, and believers who wish to follow this path have several strict Church rules.
Initially, a young man who wishes to live like a monk is welcomed to the monastery for no more than three days as a guest. After that, he receives the novice’s uniform (black robes) and begins his novitiate. If a novice brother or sister chooses to leave monastic life during the beginner, they may do so without any consequences.
In the Orthodox Church, monasticism has several stages: novice brother and monk. How long a monk needs to pass through each step is determined by the leadership of the monastery where he is, through a spiritual evaluation on a case-by-case basis.
Where do monks live?
After passing the novice and with the blessing of the archpriest, the newcomer is dressed in a robe, which symbolizes self-denial, detachment from the world, and poverty. From now on, he is called a raptor, the first step of proper monasticism. On this occasion, the novice is ‘cut’ in a mass. Although he does not take vows, he reaffirms his commitment to monastic life on this occasion.
According to researchers, young men who have chosen the fire of faith and monks live in monasteries. The minimum age for a novice to be admitted to a monastery is 16. And they can only stay with the written consent of their parents or legal guardians. The minimum age for becoming a monk is 21.
Monks are not allowed to leave the monastery or hermitage where they live without the permission of the abbot or abbess. Who may issue a written permission slip for a maximum of eight days per year.? This note will contain the stamp of the monastery and will specify the reason for the leave or commission. The date, the place where the monk is going, and how long he is on vacation.
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The Monastic lifestyle represents a living witness to the ardent faith; it faithfully reproduces the faith and life of the early Church. It is a concrete model of the authentic Christian life, totally in conformity with the evangelical commandments. It is not a superior model but an original model.
Perfection is only in God and is the gift of the Holy Spirit. Asceticism never becomes an end in itself; it is only a means necessary and appropriate for those who struggle; through abstinence, our freedom is manifested, which consents to receive this gift.
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You might also want to know.
According to Justinian’s 133rd Novella: “monastic life is something holy,” asceticism is not a system of simple moral rules. But a system of devotions that brings graces and gifts to any Christian life. In his Rules, St. Basil the Great compares monks to the “silvers” of the Gospel. Who “take the kingdom,” thus expressing the maximalism of the Christian state.
5 Ways to live a monastic lifestyle
The road of the monastic lifestyle is a road so loved by those who walk it in the hope of salvation but so misunderstood by those who do not. Unfortunately, the service of monasticism, that is to say, the benefit of celibacy, is being performed less and less frequently. Below I have presented to you five ways to live a monastic lifestyle.
1. Listen to your call to monasticism.
The call to monasticism is that inner feeling that is so intense that no other sense can surpass that call. This call is that feeling of dedication, of renouncing worldly things to draw closer to God. Deepening prayer and changing from the older man to the new man. The older man, full of sin, anger, sorrow, and worldly cares, becomes the contemporary man. With a righteous life, gentle, forgiving. Free from worldly cares, humble, and obedient.
2. Don’t get married
The monk is the one who dies at once to the world. And then struggles with his passions and thoughts until his last breath. The ordinary Christian, married or not, has the same duty: to die for the world and fight his forces to the end.
Since the path to the Kingdom of Christ is narrow and rough, it is clear that the monk and the Christian bridegroom face the same difficulties. Therefore, St. John Chrysostom, referring to the similarity of the monk’s and the monk’s need for salvation, says: “The only difference between a monk and a priest is that the former is married and the latter is not.”
3. Be prepared to understand the life of the true monk.
The fresco depicting the “life of the true monk” is usually displayed on the porch of the Church, along with frescoes such as “Stairway to Heaven” and “The Fearful Judgement.” In what follows, we’ll look over the content of this fresco in more detail.
In the center is a cross and a monk crucified on it, dressed in a shawl and shirt, barefoot, advancing with his feet pinned to the bottom ledge of the cross; his face is peaceful, his eyes closed, and his mouth shut. Besides his face is written: “Put, O Lord, the strait of my mouth.”
4. Be obedient
In the monastery, they keep talking about obedience. That obedience is part of monastic life. Obedience is a way of life for those who live in the sanctuary; a form of self-denial, humility, and obedience must be carried out with care. It does not matter what kind of obedience you perform but how you complete it. Every obedience must be fulfilled with humility, patience, and prayer. Obedience is more remarkable than fasting and prayer.”. If this call comes from the depths of the heart and especially following a canon of worship, it is good to follow it.
5. Do not choose the monastery only as a place of refuge.
The monastery should not be a refuge for those who suffer from love, fall into depression, or lose all their possessions and worldly titles. Those who choose the monastery cause suffering and disturbance in the oblast. For various reasons, a man who enters a sanctuary will never understand humility, obedience, or prayer canon. Refugees will turn into an ordeal, and often these people disturb the peace of the monastery and eventually end up leaving the monastery.
- The one who responds to the evangelical call to fulfillment makes himself equal to the Apostles, says St. Simeon; he can, like St. John the Evangelist, go back to the people and proclaim what he has seen in God. He can and must do it. He really cannot do otherwise. A monk is a witness par excellence to the end, an Apostle of evangelical revelation.
- St. John, the Scarlet, consistently shows that the specificity of a monk consists in his untiring love for God, Who must be loved as a fiancé loves his fiancée. According to his disciples, he “inflated by divine love, was nothing but unceasing prayer, unceasing love for God.” At the same time, authentic monasticism never leads to isolation, for its mission, according to St Maxim the Confessor, is to unite man with the Holy Trinity and manifest the truth of the Holy Trinity in man, among men.
- Monastic life is thus justified entirely by the thirst for God. If we were to define it, we could say that it is the preplan of desire, of longing for God. Therefore, humility is the power that locates the axis of our life in God and destroys resentment and self-centredness at its foundations.
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A monk’s schedule is simple and is divided between prayer, work, and sleep. According to church regulations, monks are required to attend prayers in the monastery. At least seven times a day, bring “the seven praises of the day before God.” The prayers must be said “to the end, with all patience and forbearance. Without stretching the chanting, lest it is tiresome, and without haste, lest the fire of prayer is extinguished.”
Church regulations state that salaried monks must deposit half of their salary or pension to the monastery cashier to benefit the monastery. When the subject decides to donate the total amount, the monastery administration will see to procuring all necessary.