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Holy Rule for Feb. 8

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  • Jerry Lee
    +PAX Chapter 7: On Humility cont. February 8, June 9, October 9 The eleventh degree of humility is that when a monk speaks he do so gently and without
    Message 1 of 5 , Feb 8, 2004
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      +PAX

      Chapter 7: On Humility cont.
      February 8, June 9, October 9

      The eleventh degree of humility is that when a monk speaks he do so gently
      and without laughter, humbly and seriously, in few and sensible words, and
      that he be not noisy in his speech. It is written, "A wise man is known by
      the fewness of his words."

      REFLECTION

      I read this one and cringe, largely because I fail it so much. Part of my loudness is being 40% deaf, and while I try to control my levels of speech, I sometimes forget. That, however, in NO way absolves me from the wise man and fewness of words part, nor does it cover the sins of my tendency to make a big splash nearly every time I'm entering the pool. Face it, beloveds, for those at poolside dining on dry snacks like potato chips, those big splashes can get very old, very fast!

      I'm speaking of my own failure here, but I imagine some of it may apply to others' lives, too. So many wasted words, and at such volume! What is their purpose, what insecurities do they cover? How many times do I speak as if on stage and why? To show that I am cool or a big shot or clever or funny? All those things are ultimately lies and the person I may be trying most to convince is my pathetically false self. How many times do I call it teasing when another is really hurt? How many times do I go over the top and not even notice? Even if I am only futilely trying to overcome my own boredom by creating some excitement, the message reads frighteningly clear: I am more important, I am a big deal, I matter more than the people or silence that make me uncomfortable. None of that is true in the sense I am modeling it. None. So why do I bother? Why do any of us? These are tough and excellent questions!

      There are, however, both positive and negative sides to this virtuous method of speech. Check out the "gently" part, check out the "fewness" of words, not their total absence. I have been at gatherings, not a few of them, alas, monastic, where such a tense and uneasy silence obtained that one began to ardently hope that someone would serve cyanide kool-aid and end the suffering! One leaves such a mess hankering for either a stiff drink or an antacid. Not what recreations are supposed to be and especially bad if they come right after supper!

      What is behind such recreations that have all the charm of a dead string quartet is often shyness or social ineptitude, but these, too, are faults in some instances and must be overcome. Just as the braying jackass like myself must rein in, others must consciously "rein out". To fail to do so is to embrace the same lie: I matter more than this situation, than these people. My feelings are paramount. Whoops! Not so. Many humble people may be reticent, but there are plenty of ways to be shy that are decidedly neither humble nor kind.

      The twofold key is charity and balance. There have been times when I have seen a person- even been a person- who monopolized a recreation. There have been other times when I have longed for someone to do so. It requires that mindfulness born of love and balance to truthfully ascertain whether a situation would profit more from our silence or our speaking. But the key here is "profit more" and the recipients in mind must be others, not just ourselves. Buffoonery can certainly annoy, but silence can also sometimes hurt: this person doesn't care about me at all, it's like I didn't even exist. Somewhere between the extremes lies love, folks, and that is our precarious goal.

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB
      http://www.stmarysmonastery.org
      jeromeleo@...
      Petersham, MA

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Jerry Lee
      +PAX Prayers, please, for Shirley, painful hip and groin inflammation, which impedes her at work, treatment is so far ineffective, and for Bernice, recovering
      Message 2 of 5 , Feb 8, 2005
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        +PAX

        Prayers, please, for Shirley, painful hip and groin inflammation, which impedes her at work, treatment is so far ineffective, and for Bernice, recovering from laser eye surgery, for a speedy return to health. Prayers, too, for Marie and her daughter, Julie, both have had setbacks in mental illness, and for their families, for Donald, heart surgery yesterday and for his wife, Hilda, and all their family. Prayers for Nicole, 16, seeking guidance to make the right choices. God's will is best. All is mercy and grace. God is never absent. Alleluia! Thanks so much. JL

        Chapter 7: On Humility cont.
        February 8, June 9, October 9

        The eleventh degree of humility is that when a monk speaks he do so gently
        and without laughter, humbly and seriously, in few and sensible words, and
        that he be not noisy in his speech. It is written, "A wise man is known by
        the fewness of his words."

        REFLECTION

        I read this one and cringe, largely because I fail it so much. Part of my
        loudness is being 40% deaf, and while I try to control my levels of speech, I
        sometimes forget. That, however, in NO way absolves me from the wise man and
        fewness of words part, nor does it cover the sins of my tendency to make a big
        splash nearly every time I'm entering the pool. Face it, beloveds, for those at
        poolside dining on dry snacks like potato chips, those big splashes can get very
        old, very fast!

        I'm speaking of my own failure here, but I imagine some of it may apply to
        others' lives, too. So many wasted words, and at such volume! What is their
        purpose, what insecurities do they cover? How many times do I speak as if on
        stage and why? To show that I am cool or a big shot or clever or funny? All
        those things are ultimately lies and the person I may be trying most to convince
        is my pathetically false self.

        How many times do I call it teasing when another is really hurt? How many
        times do I go over the top and not even notice, because my focus is really on myself?
        Even if I am only futilely trying to overcome my own boredom by creating some
        excitement, the message reads frighteningly clear: I am more important, I am a
        big deal, I matter more than the people or silence that make me uncomfortable.
        None of that is true in the sense I am modeling it. None. So why do I bother?
        Why do any of us? These are tough and excellent questions!

        There are, however, both positive and negative sides to this virtuous method of
        speech. Check out the "gently" part, check out the "fewness" of words, not
        their total absence. I have been at gatherings, not a few of them, alas,
        monastic, where such a tense and uneasy silence obtained that one began to
        ardently hope that someone would serve cyanide kool-aid and end the suffering!
        One leaves such a mess hankering for either a stiff drink or an antacid. Not
        what recreations are supposed to be and especially bad if they come right after
        supper!

        What is behind such recreations that have all the charm of a dead string quartet
        is often shyness or social ineptitude, but these, too, are faults in some
        instances and must be overcome. Just as the braying fool like myself must
        rein in, others must consciously "rein out". To fail to do so is to embrace the
        same lie: I matter more than this situation, than these people. My feelings are
        paramount. Whoops! Not so. Many humble people may be reticent, but there are
        plenty of ways to be shy that are decidedly neither humble nor kind.

        The twofold key is charity and balance. There have been times when I have seen a
        person- even been a person- who monopolized a recreation. There have been other
        times when I have longed for someone to do so. It requires that mindfulness
        born of love and balance to truthfully ascertain whether a situation would
        profit more from our silence or our speaking. But the key here is "profit more"
        and the recipients in mind must be others, not just ourselves. Buffoonery can
        certainly annoy, but silence can also sometimes hurt: this person doesn't care
        about me at all, it's like I didn't even exist. Somewhere between the extremes
        lies love, folks, and that is our precarious goal.

        Love and prayers,
        Jerome, OSB
        http://www.stmarysmonastery.org
        jeromeleo@...
        Petersham, MA

        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Jerry Lee
        +PAX Prayers, please for someone facing a very scary discernment, also for Bob, recovering from surgery yesterday and for Jim, unemployed after 19 years at his
        Message 3 of 5 , Feb 8, 2006
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          +PAX

          Prayers, please for someone facing a very scary discernment, also for Bob, recovering from surgery yesterday and for Jim, unemployed after 19 years at his job and trying to collect his unemployment checks while hunting for another position. Prayers for the happy death and eternal rest of Lois, for whom we have prayed. She went to God on Monday. Prayers, too, for her son, Ed, and all her family. Lord, help us as You know and will. God's will is best. All is mercy and grace. God is never absent, praise Him! Thanks so much. JL

          Chapter 7: On Humility cont.
          February 8, June 9, October 9

          The eleventh degree of humility is that when a monk speaks he do so gently
          and without laughter, humbly and seriously, in few and sensible words, and
          that he be not noisy in his speech. It is written, "A wise man is known by
          the fewness of his words."

          REFLECTION

          I read this one and cringe, largely because I fail it so much. Part of my
          loudness is being 40% deaf, and while I try to control my levels of speech, I
          sometimes forget. That, however, in NO way absolves me from the wise man and
          fewness of words part, nor does it cover the sins of my tendency to make a big
          splash nearly every time I'm entering the pool. Face it, beloveds, for those at
          poolside dining on dry snacks like potato chips, those big splashes can get very
          old, very fast!

          I'm speaking of my own failure here, but I imagine some of it may apply to
          others' lives, too. So many wasted words, and at such volume! What is their
          purpose, what insecurities do they cover? How many times do I speak as if on
          stage and why? To show that I am cool or a big shot or clever or funny? All
          those things are ultimately lies and the person I may be trying most to convince
          is my pathetically false self.

          How many times do I call it teasing when another is really hurt? How many
          times do I go over the top and not even notice, because my focus is really on
          myself? Even if I am only futilely trying to overcome my own boredom by creating
          some excitement, the message reads frighteningly clear: I am more important, I am a
          big deal, I matter more than the people or silence that make me uncomfortable.
          None of that is true in the sense I am modeling it. None. So why do I bother?
          Why do any of us? These are tough and excellent questions!

          There are, however, both positive and negative sides to this virtuous method of
          speech. Check out the "gently" part, check out the "fewness" of words, not
          their total absence. I have been at gatherings, not a few of them, alas,
          monastic, where such a tense and uneasy silence obtained that one began to
          ardently hope that someone would serve cyanide kool-aid and end the suffering!
          One leaves such a mess hankering for either a stiff drink or an antacid. Not
          what recreations are supposed to be and especially bad if they come right after
          supper!

          What is behind such recreations that have all the charm of a dead string quartet
          is often shyness or social ineptitude, but these, too, are faults in some
          instances and must be overcome. Just as the braying fool like myself must
          rein in, others must consciously "rein out". To fail to do so is to embrace the
          same lie: I matter more than this situation, than these people. My feelings are
          paramount. Whoops! Not so. Many humble people may be reticent, but there are
          plenty of ways to be shy that are decidedly neither humble nor kind.

          The twofold key is charity and balance. There have been times when I have seen a
          person- even been a person- who monopolized a recreation. There have been other
          times when I have longed for someone to do so. It requires that mindfulness
          born of love and balance to truthfully ascertain whether a situation would
          profit more from our silence or our speaking. But the key here is "profit more"
          and the recipients in mind must be others, not just ourselves. Buffoonery can
          certainly annoy, but silence can also sometimes hurt: this person doesn't care
          about me at all, it's like I didn't even exist. Somewhere between the extremes
          lies love, folks, and that is our precarious goal.

          Love and prayers,
          Jerome, OSB
          http://www.stmarysmonastery.org
          jeromeleo@...
          Petersham, MA

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Brjeromeleo@aol.com
          +PAX Prayers, please, for the happy death and eternal rest of Luana, for whom we prayed. She died at 11AM Wednesday. Her long-estranged son could not make it
          Message 4 of 5 , Feb 7, 2007
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            +PAX

            Prayers, please, for the happy death and eternal rest of Luana, for whom we
            prayed. She died at 11AM Wednesday. Her long-estranged son could not make it
            there in time. Prayers for him and all Luana's family. Prayers can mend
            things, even after death relationships can heal.

            Prayers of thanks and Deo gratias: Mary Ellen, for whom we prayed, has left
            hospice and is hospitalized. Don't have details, but perhaps our prayers have
            helped give her a bit more time. Prayers for Chenal, 20's, breast and
            cervical cancer. Was in chemo when she broke her leg in a car accident, now
            recovering from that surgery, chemo is on hold for a while. Prayers for B., newly
            returned to the Church after many years. May she be patient with herself in
            learning and re-learning her Faith. Prayers please for Bob, in critical
            condition in ICU, suffering from a serious infection. He's in septic shock and had to
            have one leg amputated. Prayers, too for his wife Theresa and their two
            young children, Olivia and George.

            Prayers for Lou Ann, complete hysterectomy on January 12, cancer was found.
            Currently she is hospitalized with a blood clot on the left lung. No chemo
            is possible until another 3 weeks passes, in other words - until complete
            healing from the surgery is accomplished. Please pray for u her and her
            husband, Ken. Prayers please for Russ, 42, suffering from cancer...prayers also for
            his family. Lord, help us all as You know and will. God's will is best. All
            is mercy and grace. God si never absent, praise Him! Thanks so much. JL

            Chapter 7: On Humility cont.
            February 8, June 9, October 9

            The eleventh degree of humility is that when a monk speaks he do so gently
            and without laughter, humbly and seriously, in few and sensible words, and
            that he be not noisy in his speech. It is written, "A wise man is known by
            the fewness of his words."

            REFLECTION

            I read this one and cringe, largely because I fail it so much. Part of my
            loudness is being 40% deaf, and while I try to control my levels of speech, I
            sometimes forget. That, however, in NO way absolves me from the wise man and
            fewness of words part, nor does it cover the sins of my tendency to make a
            big
            splash nearly every time I'm entering the pool. Face it, beloveds, for those
            at
            poolside dining on dry snacks like potato chips, those big splashes can get
            very
            old, very fast!

            I'm speaking of my own failure here, but I imagine some of it may apply to
            others' lives, too. So many wasted words, and at such volume! What is their
            purpose, what insecurities do they cover? How many times do I speak as if on
            stage and why? To show that I am cool or a big shot or clever or funny? All
            those things are ultimately lies and the person I may be trying most to
            convince
            is my pathetically false self.

            How many times do I call it teasing when another is really hurt? How many
            times do I go over the top and not even notice, because my focus is really on
            myself? Even if I am only futilely trying to overcome my own boredom by
            creating
            some excitement, the message reads frighteningly clear: I am more important,
            I
            am a big deal, I matter more than the people or silence that make me
            uncomfortable.
            None of that is true in the sense I am modeling it. None. So why do I bother?
            Why do any of us? These are tough and excellent questions!

            There are, however, both positive and negative sides to this virtuous method
            of
            speech. Check out the "gently" part, check out the "fewness" of words, not
            their total absence. I have been at gatherings, not a few of them, alas,
            monastic, where such a tense and uneasy silence obtained that one began to
            ardently hope that someone would serve cyanide kool-aid and end the
            suffering!
            One leaves such a mess hankering for an antacid. Not what recreations are
            supposed
            to be and especially bad if they come right after a meal!

            What is behind such recreations that have all the charm of a dead string
            quartet
            is often shyness or social ineptitude, but these, too, are faults in some
            instances and must be overcome. Just as the braying fool like myself must
            rein in, others must consciously "rein out". To fail to do so is to embrace
            the
            same lie: I matter more than this situation, than these people. My feelings
            are
            paramount. Whoops! Not so. Many humble people may be reticent, but there are
            plenty of ways to be shy that are decidedly neither humble nor kind.

            The twofold key is charity and balance. There have been times when I have
            seen a
            person- even been a person- who monopolized a recreation. There have been
            other
            times when I have longed for someone to do so. It requires that mindfulness
            born of love and balance to truthfully ascertain whether a situation would
            profit more from our silence or our speaking. But the key here is "profit
            more"
            and the recipients in mind must be others, not just ourselves. Buffoonery can
            certainly annoy, but silence can also sometimes hurt: this person doesn't
            care
            about me at all, it's like I didn't even exist. Somewhere between the
            extremes
            lies love, folks, and that is our precarious goal.

            Love and prayers,
            Jerome, OSB
            _http://www.stmarysmonastery.org_ (http://www.stmarysmonastery.org/)
            _brjeromeleo@..._ (mailto:brjeromeleo@...)
            Petersham, MA





            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Br. Jerome Leo
            +PAX Prayers for the happy death and eternal rest of Michael, 20, a soldier killed by an IED in Iraq and for all his family and all who mourn him. Prayers,
            Message 5 of 5 , Feb 7, 2008
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              +PAX

              Prayers for the happy death and eternal rest of Michael, 20, a soldier killed by an IED in Iraq and for all his family and all who mourn him. Prayers, too, that his funeral is not marred by protesters with signs disturbing to his family.

              Prayers for the spiritual, mental and physical health of the following, for all their loved ones and for all who take care of them:

              Karen, having gastric by-pass surgery later this month. She has some blood pressure problems, so is a bit concerned about the surgery.

              Peter, who was just diagnosed with a tumor, growing in his bladder. He will have emergency surgery today for it.

              Deo gratias, Anastasia, a troubled teen we have prayed ofr, has a new job and hopefully will graduate this year from high school. Lord, help us all as You know and will. God's will is best. All is mercy and grace. God is never absent, praise Him! Thanks so much. JL

              Chapter 7: On Humility cont.
              February 8, June 9, October 9

              The eleventh degree of humility is that when a monk speaks he do so gently
              and without laughter, humbly and seriously, in few and sensible words, and
              that he be not noisy in his speech. It is written, "A wise man is known by
              the fewness of his words."

              REFLECTION

              I read this one and cringe, largely because I fail it so much. Part of my
              loudness is being 40% deaf, and while I try to control my levels of speech, I
              sometimes forget. That, however, in NO way absolves me from the wise man and
              fewness of words part, nor does it cover the sins of my tendency to make a
              big splash nearly every time I'm entering the pool. Face it, beloveds, for those
              at poolside dining on dry snacks like potato chips, those big splashes can get
              very old, very fast!

              I'm speaking of my own failure here, but I imagine some of it may apply to
              others' lives, too. So many wasted words, and at such volume! What is their
              purpose, what insecurities do they cover? How many times do I speak as if on
              stage and why? To show that I am cool or a big shot or clever or funny? All
              those things are ultimately lies and the person I may be trying most to
              convince is my pathetically false self.

              How many times do I call it teasing when another is really hurt? How many
              times do I go over the top and not even notice, because my focus is really on
              myself? Even if I am only futilely trying to overcome my own boredom by
              creating some excitement, the message reads frighteningly clear: I am more important,
              I am a big deal, I matter more than the people or silence that make me
              uncomfortable. None of that is true in the sense I am modeling it. None. So why do I bother?
              Why do any of us? These are tough and excellent questions!

              There are, however, both positive and negative sides to this virtuous method
              of speech. Check out the "gently" part, check out the "fewness" of words, not
              their total absence. I have been at gatherings, not a few of them, alas,
              monastic, where such a tense and uneasy silence obtained that one began to
              ardently hope that someone would serve cyanide kool-aid and end the
              suffering! One leaves such a mess hankering for an antacid. Not what recreations are
              supposed to be and especially bad if they come right after a meal!

              What is behind such recreations that have all the charm of a dead string
              quartet is often shyness or social ineptitude, but these, too, are faults in some
              instances and must be overcome. Just as the braying fool like myself must
              rein in, others must consciously "rein out". To fail to do so is to embrace
              the same lie: I matter more than this situation, than these people. My feelings
              are paramount. Whoops! Not so. Many humble people may be reticent, but there are
              plenty of ways to be shy that are decidedly neither humble nor kind.

              The twofold key is charity and balance. There have been times when I have
              seen a person- even been a person- who monopolized a recreation. There have been
              other times when I have longed for someone to do so. It requires that mindfulness
              born of love and balance to truthfully ascertain whether a situation would
              profit more from our silence or our speaking. But the key here is "profit
              more" and the recipients in mind must be others, not just ourselves. Buffoonery can
              certainly annoy, but silence can also sometimes hurt: this person doesn't
              care about me at all, it's like I didn't even exist. Somewhere between the
              extremes lies love, folks, and that is our precarious goal.

              Love and prayers,
              Jerome, OSB
              http://www.stmarysmonastery.org
              Petersham, MA



              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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