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Mar 7

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  • russophile2002
    +PAX March 7, July 7, November 6 Chapter 30: How Boys Are to Be Corrected Every age and degree of understanding should have its proper measure of discipline.
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 7, 2003
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      March 7, July 7, November 6
      Chapter 30: How Boys Are to Be Corrected

      Every age and degree of understanding
      should have its proper measure of discipline.
      With regard to boys and adolescents, therefore,
      or those who cannot understand the seriousness
      of the penalty of excommunication,
      whenever such as these are deliquent
      let them be subjected to severe fasts
      or brought to terms by harsh beatings,
      that they may be cured.

      REFLECTION

      Please, folks, always be very careful to read the Holy Rule for the
      ancient document it is. People who read this (and a few other
      passages!) with 21st century ideas go right through the roof. We must
      read in the context of history. Remember, too, that about 50 years
      ago, beating children into compliance was still rather warmly thought
      of as an approach. In the Rule, as in so many other things, we must
      be careful of the mistake that looks critically back with the lens of
      today.

      Actually, there is a much wider lesson in such attempts to read
      things in context. Our own age can be terribly proud and
      chauvinistic. We can think, as the Broadway tune affirms, that we
      have "gone about as far as we can go" in terms of getting things
      right. We can think we are the acme and zenith. Sigh....

      Beloveds, if this is the acme, I will hate like hell to see the
      decline. If this is the springtime, what must the winter be? Face it,
      folks, not only is our own day not as hot as we might wish it were,
      but many ages before us thought exactly the same things! And we look
      back on them with scorn!

      An example here. A friend of mine once ripped out at Leo XIII's
      landmark social justice encyclical, "Rerum Novarum", for not using
      inclusive language. Hello? It was written in the very late 19th
      century, in Latin yet, (which is inclusive,) and no one at all that I
      know of had any widespread concept of inclusive language at the time.
      Such concerns were about 85 years away in time. It was a great
      document of its time. It is a mistake to judge any such writing as a
      document of OUR time. If we forget that, we cheat ourselves out of
      the ineffable wisdom that the Holy Rule and many other ancient
      sources contain.

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB
      jeromeleo@... St. Mary's Monastery Petersham, MA
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