Camaldolese History #5

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Camaldolese History #5

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It's on Peter Damien himself, himself, capital H. Isaac can't be here because he got a surprise water testing thrown on him yesterday afternoon, and he had to take it in early this morning. So it's a good thing we had—he said he'd definitely make sure he had a tape to listen to. Okay, St. Peter Damien, we know—as opposed to St. Romuald, we know a lot about Peter Damien. First of all, we have his life written by his successor at Fonte Avalona, John of Lodi. We have that in English, Italian, and Latin in the library. But also, Peter Damien wrote an enormous amount of treatises and letters, and we have his own writings from which we can glean a lot about him.


Also, he did a number of papal legations where he was traveling for the Pope as a troubleshooter, and we have the records of those as well, as well as other papal records of Peter Damien. So put all together, we have quite a bit of secondary and primary source material. Still, there are some questions. We know that he was born into a rather large family, that he was the last in a long line of children, and that he was unwanted by his mother, who wanted nothing to do with him after she gave birth to him. And she died not too long after that. I don't remember how old he was, maybe two or three or something like that. He was orphaned. We know that he has a large family. We know only a few of the names of his siblings. We know that he had a brother, Damianus, who was an archpriest in Ravenna, and for whom


he took his own name, Damien. He added Damien to his name in honor of his older brother. We know that he had a sister named Rhodolinda, because he mentions her, and a sister named Sofitcha. She was probably towards the end of the line, you can hear his mother saying, oh, Sofitcha. We know also that he had a brother named Marinus, but those are the only names we know, where at some time in one of his writings, he mentioned those names. But there are others. He was rescued, really rescued, by his brother Damianus, the archpriest in Ravenna, because one of his other brothers had taken Peter under tow and really enslaved him, made him


his slave, and he dealt with the livestock, basically, and was even fed poorly. He was being maltreated by his own brother. The other brother comes to the rescue, the older one, takes him under his arm and gives him an education, and becomes Peter Damien's hero, and thus he takes on his name, Peter Damien. We know that Peter Damien was a fantastic student in the arts, that is philosophy and rhetoric, et cetera, at the time, and his fame grew rather early on. We know that, and he was born, by the way, in the year 1007, and so we have his millennial celebration coming up in six years. Hopefully they'll have a big festivity at Fontevillana, a flock of us can go over.


I've already put in a word for myself, but I'll see how many we can get over there. In the year 1030, when he was 23 years old, he'd already finished his studies, and he was teaching. We know that his own teachers, the ones who were famous, were named Manfred and Ivo. He studied under these two. In Faenza, which interestingly enough is the city where he died and is buried, just by happenstance. We are told that in the year 1035, and he's a teacher at this time, we are told by John of Lodi, his biographer, that he met two of the hermits from Fontevillana who were travelling


on some trip. I don't remember if there is a context given, and he's very, very taken with these two hermits and with the idea of Fontevillana, and goes there in the year 1035. Dante mentions that Peter Damian left a benefice, that he was a canon of Santa Maria in Porto in 1035, so at the time he went to Fontevillana he was a canon, and he left the benefice that he had in his pocket at that time. Who knows whether there is any historical validity to that. Can I ask, what's Fontevillana like before Peter Damian? What kind of place is it? Small. But it's a hermitage. Small. Little huts, basically.


There's this, I mean as far as we can tell, central crypt chapel, central buildings, but outlying hermitages, and that they lived evidently two in a hermitage. And then on the way out up the hill are recluses. Right. So what I'm asking is, is there already a Romualdian hermitage at the time? Well, we don't know for sure. Most Romualdian scholars assume that there's at least some kind of strong interaction there with the Romualdian world, because Romuald had been so close for so many years, just down the hill. He had to have something to do with them. But they already existed. They weren't a Romualdian foundation. There are some that, there's one that says that, but it's unlikely that Romuald actually


founded Fontiavellana. If you read the history of Fontiavellana, they'll mention the oral history of some old monk, and I forget the name, and he founded it, and then people gathered around him and they started Fontiavellana in the early 1990s. But, again, they don't know for sure. It's just conjecture. But Fontiavellana certainly is in the Romualdian world already at this time, somewhat. It's Peter Damian who really brings full force into the Romualdian world. It's also suggested that he's already a priest by this time, when he enters Fontiavellana. We don't, again, we don't know that for sure. Since they don't say anything about it, or about his later ordination or anything like that, it's assumed that he really was already a priest after his studies, and when he joined


Fontiavellana at the age of 28, that he was already ordained. And maybe Dante's right. Maybe he was a canon. Maybe he had the benefits already. But his main thing was teaching rhetoric at this time. He was a teacher, quite scholarly also. Did you say 21 or 28? Isn't it 28? It was 1035. Yeah. I was just quickly doing addition during that time. That's how I got to the 28th. So I wasn't sure of my own number. After he had been at Fontiavellana for five years, the monks of a large abbey named Pomposa, and I've met monks from Pomposa. Pomposa's had another resurgence in the last few years, and they're doing very well.


They're in the same congregation that San Giorgio in Venezia. I'm forgetting which one it is, those famous congregation. I don't remember the name of the congregation. Anyway, they asked for a monk. Actually, they asked specifically for Peter Damian to come and teach their monks scripture, scripture courses, which he does. He goes there in 1040, and he's gone for two years. But he's not there all the time. He does traveling also, back and forth, and a bit of pastoral work also. But his main job during 1040, 1041 is teaching at Pomposa.


At some point in the year 1041, he goes to an old Romualdian foundation for Romuald. Have you been there? Oh, my gosh, it's beautiful. It's an old... All that's left is an old church, but they open it for weddings. It's just stark, beautiful, primal. Anyway, St. Vincent Alferno, San Vincenzo Alferno, and he's there, and he's helping the little community there to revive. So, we have a Romualdian foundation, which is already slacking off, and Peter Damian stops in there, stays there for a while, and helps them to revive their monasticism. And, interestingly enough, during that time, begins the life of Romuald. He begins at Fourneau to write the life of Romuald, on his way back to Fonte Avelana.


Sometimes you may run into this here, Petra Pertusa. That refers to Fourneau. That's just the place where Fourneau is. Fourneau is also a place, but this is a larger geographical place. It's like a huge, huge ravine, which is now... There's a superstrada now that goes through there, right through the big ravine. Anyway, he reforms Fourneau in the Romualdian style. He's there in 1042. He spends the year 1042 at Fourneau. So, it just isn't a flash in the pan. He spends at least a year there, before he goes back to Fonte Avelana. The next year, 1043, he's already prior at Fonte Avelana. And he immediately begins an extensive building program.


He builds the place up into a rather huge monastery. I should say ermo, hermitage. That's going to, right down through the centuries, down to this very day, that it's still an issue, whether you call it a monastery or a hermitage. Yeah, and they hold on to the... They're allowed to hold on to the venerable title of venerable ermo. Well, maybe now there is, with... Oh, what's his name? The former prior general is laying in bed all the time now. Bedridden. Aliprando, yeah. He's a dear. Yeah, he's pretty well bedridden. Anyway, he starts a huge building program. He refurbishes what already exists.


And then he brings conversi into Fonte Avelana. That is, he brings lay brothers whose primary work is to do manual labor. That's their thing. So he brings conversi into Fonte Avelana. And he goes on collecting tours, where he just amasses a huge library. He goes book collecting. So I'm not the first Peter Damien to run up to the Bay Area and spend wads of money on books. And he builds up the library into a very nice library. Builds library also. He's building buildings during this time, from 43 onwards. And from 1043 onwards, he's writing. He's always writing. That's why he has such a huge corpus. In English, we have, in process, the whole corpus of Peter Damien coming out from Catholic University Press. It'll be a six-volume series.


We have four of them now in print. Also, in Italian, there's that critical edition coming out from Cittanova. And it's going to be, like, what, 20 volumes or something like that? We have the first volume. It's going to take decades, probably, for that to come. We have everything in Latin, of course. If you're interested. And we have various things in French and Italian. Most of his monastic writings we have in English, in one place or another. Certainly in French we have them. All the monastic writings in French and Italian. Now I'm just going to name a bunch of dates and tell you what he's doing at that time just as little guide posts


or highway posts through his life. In 1048, he founds a hermitage at Frontale, where he later sends his best friend, hermit Dominic Loricato, who becomes prior there and dies there at Frontale. Have you been to Frontale? It's not too far away. What were you doing? You weren't eating pasta the whole time. Oh, that's a nice place too, yeah. The place at Frontale is called the Holy Trinity or also San Vicino. San Vicino. In the next year, around the next year, 1049, he founds the Ocri Hermitage. Hermitage at Ocri. I haven't seen that one. That's St. Nicholas of Corno. Corno. Is that a hermitage also? Yeah, that's a hermitage too. Then in 1053, his first years of founding


and reforming and stuff, it's mostly all hermitages. In 1053, he reforms the Romualdian hermitage of Monte Pregio. I mentioned this and had this on the board last time. And then, during the next couple of years, at some point between 1053 and 1055, he founds another hermitage called Gamugno or at Gamugno, called St. Barnabas. Between 1056 and 1057, he reforms an abbey, St. John Baptist Abbey at Acereita. Sometimes when you're doing the research, you only run into the town. Like they'll mention, you know, Acereita and you're supposed to know that that's St. John Baptist Abbey. In 1057, he founds St. Bartholomew,


monastery at... Pregio. Prego. Which we've both seen. And that's the year he's made it cardinal. Much against his will. He's named the cardinal archbishop of Ostia. Which is not far from Rome, huh? Not far from the airport. It's basically the old port on the nice beach. It's a beach area. Ostia. Stephen IX. Pope Stephen IX is the one who creates the cardinal. And he's a Benedictine pope. What was the year of that? Pardon? What was the year of that? 1057. Already in 1059, two years later, he's sent off on his first troubleshooting trip. The pope sends him on a papal mission


to Milan. That's the most famous of his missions, actually. That's the one where they're all, everyone there was... Oh, what's the word I want? The heresy. The big one, where you buy your... Yeah, they were all Simoniacs. All of them. The whole clergy of Milan. He was just horrified when he went on this mission to find out how many were and to try and get them won over and get everything straightened out. When he went there, he discovered that absolutely everyone, the entire clergy was Simoniac. And he was sent on this mission with another cardinal, Cardinal Anselm of Lucca. They were good friends, Anselmo di Lucca, who became a pope. Later became pope, during


Petey's lifetime. He knew all these popes during this time, very closely. Very intimate friends with all the popes at this time. There's a new one every two or three years and they don't last very long. In 1061, he founds Conca. He founds a monastery of San Gregorio in Conca. I haven't been there. Also, during these years, he's helping out, and I mentioned this last time around, he's helping out a number of Romualdian foundations that are kind of shaky. They've been there for 20 years, 30 years, whatever. They're a little shaky and he strengthens them up. Sometimes puts his own men from Fonte Avalano there to help shore up the monastic life and get it back on its feet. Citria is one of these that he


pours energy and men into. Also, a monastery near Perugia. A Romualdian monastery named Holy Saviour. I don't know if we even have ruins of that anymore. He's all over the place. He's all over the place. Often enough, he's still at Fonte Avalano. Yes. He holds on to that. Yes. They tend to do that, you know. Also, San Emiliano. Have you seen San Emiliano? Yes. Where they're putting up their wash when you went there. I have pictures of this. That's my memory of San Emiliano, putting up the wash. A family lives in the home a lot. A whole family lives there. And it's the same thing


at Fonsecastro. You go there and there's kids running around and different families living in different parts of all around the courtyard. Anyway. He also reforms and shores up a monastery that all we know about it is it's called St. Benedict's Monastery. And it's disappeared from history. And wherever it is in the records, it's a monastery named San Benedetto. And that's all they know. They don't know where it is or where it went. For sure. They have some ideas, but they don't know for sure. These houses of Fonte Avalano and there are a lot more missions, believe me. There are a lot of small I could give you a whole list of them from the history of Fonte Avalano of little parishes and little hospitals, hospices, shrines,


monasteries, hermitages where they they're all over the place, little ones. And Peter Damian, when Fonte Avalano got too big at least twice he did this, at least twice Fonte Avalano was bursting at the seams and so he just filled up a wagon with monks and off they went and he said, just stop the wagon once in a while and you two get off here and go down the road and you do it alone, you do this and start a shrine and what not That's how he found it, you know and he did that at least twice, founding journeys like that. Two here, one here How awful I mean, it must have been it must have taken a tremendous amount of courage on their part to do that sort of thing We're talking 11th century too, off in the wilds you know, make yourself a hut and start a shrine Whoa, mamma mia


When we say that he Well, I wouldn't mind it nowadays I just have my mind back in the 11th century and I think, oh my god When we say that he founded these or reformed these or shored them up in the Romualdian orb because everything he's doing now is definitely Romualdian world All Fonte Avalano's foundations are part of the Romualdian world He's already written the life of Romuald, that's his hero and he's basing his monastic work on what Romuald stood for So whenever he does any of these things there are certain givens that you can just bracket in your mind that they're always part of it They're always part of his foundations and his work and that is the same givens we discussed of the Romualdian ethos which were


a Romualdian What were the givens that we can just automatically assume with Romuald's foundations Exactly Ruler Benedict He wouldn't have gone small He would have Well, small in people small in numbers Not in the whole thing Wherever they were, they lived the whole schmear And it wasn't just to He did set up little places with 3 or 4 often enough when he did these founding tours It was just 2 here and 1 here and John of Woody laughs about it He thinks it's great He went off on these founding wagon loads of monks and just dropped them off here and there We'll also have to remember that, keep in mind that with Peter Damian the life of Romuald


is his first monastic writing, not his first writing necessarily but his first monastic writing Throughout his career as a writer and as a churchman you will have between theological treatises and certain historical or pastoral treatises you will have these monastic corpus developed here and there And he writes always in the letter style Dear Anselmo You asked me to write you how a hermit should live and what you get is a rule for hermit life written to Anselmo of whatever He's always writing to little monks here and there and you get these big monastic treatises and that's how they It was one of the conventions of the time


for patristic writings But remember that the life of Romuald which he developed by by seeking out people still alive who knew Romuald and some of his monks who are still living of the Romualdian monks wrote that out, developed his life of Romuald from which if one looks closely the Romualdian ethos is present there but you have to pull it out From there on he writes these monastic and often hermitical writings and he's developing the Romualdian thing even more he's carrying it even farther and giving it some flesh and bones theoretically the Romualdian ethos One of these


writings that's real important for for us to keep in mind are the Avalonita Constitutions So he writes basically, and he writes this to some monk on the road somewhere or maybe he wrote a lot of them to the monks of Pomposa or to Odo of Cluny um uh you know and the Empress and some Pope and what not, they all go somewhere Someone asked for how do you live at Fonte Avalona and so he wrote basically what ends up being a long customary of Fonte Avalona in the 11th century the Avalonita Constitutions It's fun to read We have it in English You just have to know which opus and which volume to look at If you're interested in reading it ask me and we'll find out which page and which volume it would be


Really you have to find out who he's writing it to that's one way of discerning because it's not in a systematic way the Englishman the American scholar who's doing this Owen Blum B-L-U-M is a Franciscan at the Catholic U and he's doing it Opus 1, Letter 1 Letter 2, Letter 3, he's doing it that way you know and that's what it's called and so he's doing it from a chronological standpoint and so it's not helpful at all to find, if you're looking actually for the certain work you need to know who he wrote it to or about when he wrote it in his career Okay 1063, another golden year for him he's sent off on a papal mission to the Abbey of Cluny which is a very, very powerful abbey at this time The Pope sends him to Cluny to settle the issue between Cluny


and the Bishop of Marcon This Bishop of Marcon in whose diocese Cluny existed wants some of that power and some of that wealth that Cluny has amassed to itself and is trying to question the whole papal exemption thing under which Cluny lived and under which later on Camaldoli will live protection from, by the Pope from bishops any bishops So he goes and clears up that issue of course Cluny wins the Bishop loses even though Peter Damian's an archbishop and a cardinal he's also a monk Cluny wins as it should have won, I mean it had papal exemption and we have a nice description of that trip which I want to


translate at some point we only have it in Latin and I've never seen it anywhere else even in Italian of that trip to Cluny sort of a travelogue not too long 1066-1067 he's sent on another big mission the one to Florence where the monks the Valambrosian monks the monks of Valambrosa are fighting the bishop of Firenze and I don't remember who wins or what the issue is of that particular one I'm just not recalling probably the monks win a lot of the bishops at this time are statesmen and you know they're into power 1069 is another year


he's sent on a papal legation to the Diet at Frankfurt in Germany I presume that's an imperial diet at that time that's what it would refer to I think so he's sent to the court to deal with some court church related issue and again I don't have it written down here what the exact issue was but he's sent as the Pope's representative in 1071 we know that he's at Monte Cassino with Pope Alexander II who is a good friend of his maybe that was Luca don't remember and they're there for the dedication and consecration of the new church at Monte Cassino that Abbot Desiderius has built Abbot Desiderius to whom Peter Damian writes a number of


these treatises and letters is a very good friend of his he then later becomes Pope Victor III Peter Damian's the only one of this whole group that doesn't become Pope even his very close friend Hildebrand becomes Pope shortly after Peter Damian dies it's probably a very good thing that Peter Damian didn't become Pope he's probably better off as a trouble shooter you thought I was going to say troublemaker didn't you so we know that he was there at 1071 1072 he dies he dies in Faenza he was on his way back from a legation this particular legation was at I'm thinking Fano of all places


that's what my memory tells me was Fano and he was dealing with a family there and some church related issues money had to do something with it, anyway he straightens things out there and he's on his way back to Frontierland he catches a virus just as they're hitting Faenza on the way and so there's a little monastery that was a little monastery called Santa Maria Foris Portum, Foris do you remember your Latin, Foris? does it mean just outside? I couldn't remember if Foris was outside or just within it yeah yeah and so they put him up there that night and he died and there is a there was immediately as soon as the word got out everyone in Faenza went to that


monastery and they wouldn't let the monks take the body away he died at Faenza and so the body has been at Faenza ever since almost a thousand years now the body is in the cathedral there, the Duomo of Faenza and I still haven't made it there one of these times I hope to go there 1076 so four years after his death his very very good friend Hildebrand becomes the famous Pope Gregory the 7th who institutes the Gregorian Reform this Pope in the same year he's made Pope elevates Fonte Avalona and all its dependencies so all the little places that found it, all the monasteries that have asked Fonte Avalona to take them under and there have been additions


not only were there foundations but a number of monasteries asked to come and be protected by Fonte Avalona and be part of the family and so it was a rather huge group at this time in 1076 he makes that the Avalonita congregation also known as the Avaloniti the congregation of Santa Croce the Holy Cross or also the earliest name was the congregation of the Doves Doves because of the they had there also almost the same stemma the what is it in English? a sort of heraldic what would you call a stemma? coat of arms for the, yeah, coat of arms for Fonte Avalona yeah stemma, I can only think of the


Italian again it's two doves and the cup it's a little different from the I have a t-shirt from Fonte Avalona I can show you the stemma on the t-shirt oh no I gave that to Raniero I think he wanted it because he likes yellow it's a yellow t-shirt and I never wore the thing anyway this congregation and it's subsidiaries this situation or this setup lasts until 1569 at which time the congregation is suppressed and ordered into the Commodolese congregation so by force in the 16th century Fonte Avalona


and all of its subsidiaries is just swept into the Commodolese congregation which is not a big thing for them because well it was and it wasn't but they were Romaldian from the beginning and of course Commodole was the last foundation of Romeo and da [...] and also there were even during the days of Peter Damian there were some significant links between Commodole and and Fonte Avalona and Peter Damian because Rudolph who wrote his hermetical writings used these Avalonita customaries the Avalonita constitutions to formulate his own customary Commodole and so he was obviously


reading Peter Damian so there was some kind of relationship going on. They had copies of his writings. So Fonte Avalona was like the mother house of a new congregation in the Benedictine world that was Benedictine and Romaldian but influenced by Petey. Right, right. So like Velabrosian or Right, like these other groups, yeah. And it's good that you said within the Benedictine world because like we would say within the Benedictine order, well you know if you had said that then they would have, well they really weren't a part of an order as such but the Benedictine world, yes. The Benedictine world consisted of so many groups and what do they have in common? At least the RB. They have the RB in common. So when we


we're going to treat this again then when we run through the history. Next time I'm not nearly done. This is going to go over so I'll tell you when your time. When we hit the historical overview which was probably run two or three periods then we'll treat Fontevillan in more and more depth and of course the whole congregational development both congregations. What do we know about him, about Petey? Well we know he was very gifted. We know that he was very demanding. And at times really hard to live with. Very difficult man. Because he wouldn't compromise. He just wouldn't compromise on anything. He was very strong in his monastic principles to a point where he just wouldn't he was uncompromisingly so. And he was


feared by many many people. That's probably one reason he was never made Pope during all these elections. Even the prelates. They all feared him because he was just a firebrand who was screaming out against any abuse whatsoever and a lot of the prelates of course were guilty of certain abuses. His best friends were people who agreed with him. Many of whom did become Pope and who were also reformers at this time. We know that he was hated by many clerics during his lifetime. Mainly on the issues of sexual morality among the clergy because he spoke out publicly regarding the sexual of the clergy of the day. That's what this book here is about. The book of Gomorrah.


We also know that he was really prophetic as far as church reform went because a lot of what ends up being the Gregorian reform certainly from one aspect is coming from Cluny. And the Cluniac reform sort of melds into a Gregorian reform for the whole church. But it's also from the other side strongly affected and articulated by the work of Peter Damian that he had done for decades for the church as well as for monasteries. Okay. We also know that he suffered greatly this vacillation between wanting desperately to be a hermit and having to go out and do all this church work and being a cardinal archbishop. And then running away


from it again and getting back to Fonte Avalon and then being dragged out for another legation and whatnot. He actually resigns from active church ministry and returns to a hermit existence but again is pulled out later on for more work. He's just very good at what he did in solving major, major problems in the church. We know that he was a writer certainly, a reformer. He was prior. He was a poet. He was a musician of sorts. He wrote hymns. He was at least from the literary point of view of hymnody a musician in that sense. He was a diplomat. He was a teacher all through his life. Cardinal archbishop and later doctor of the church. He isn't made doctor of the church until I think the 18th


century or 19th century. Not remembering. His works. Well, there's a whole lot of works. I just want to mention the most important ones. And if you really want well, actually if you want a list of his books, you can just, you can look at his works and photocopy the index if you want a copy of all of his works. Already remember while he was teaching the monks of Pomposa, he was writing there. He was writing a tract about the Jews during that time. I know nothing of that particular work. But that was before he started his life of Romul, which he wrote at Fourlo on the way back in 1042. In 1045 he wrote the rule of the aramidical life. And this is the work that Rudolf IV of Camaldoli is later going to use in his own


rule of the aramidical life. As well as his constitutions, how life is lived at Fonte Avelana. He wrote that five years later in 1050. ... Three of the more important books, Domus Obisum, you'll hear this off and on during your lifetime as a Camaldolese. The Lord be with you. And also with you. Did you know they're changing that liturgically? This new language thing that in English we have to go back to saying and with your spirit. Well, I'm having a final decision on that. ... This one here is about sexual morality among the clergy. So it became a... It's not nearly... If you're going to give me a list of five books I should definitely read by Peter Damian, this is not one


you should read. But it's just one of the more famous ones. And you should know what it's about and what it is when you see it. Because it's often used out of context and whatnot for all kinds of purposes. The Liber Gratissimus also is an important work, and that's his work against Simony. And remember that his work against Simony is adopted by the Pope as the theology against... the doctrine against Simony for the Church. It was between him and Cardinal Umberto who had wrote three books on the same topic, and they chose Peter Damian over the other one who were both writing against Simony. And then there's a number of smaller works that are monastic that are important. If you read Peter Damian, you should read


his book on monastic perfection, on the perfect education of a monk, also very good to read. He wrote also a series of lives of saints. The next abbot of Cluny, Hugh of Cluny, asked Peter Damian to write a life of Odelo. So Abbot Odelo of Cluny. He also wrote a life of Saint Maur. This is not the placid and Maur of Benedict's Day, but this is the bishop of Cesena. Saint Maur of Cesena, the life that he wrote. He wrote the life of Dominic Loricato, and of all the lives, this is probably the more important one to me. And these lives are very short, four pages, five pages, large pages in minia, I'm speaking, but I mean, you know, relatively small tract.


And another one on Rudolf Oh, and I should mention, and he didn't only write, if you forget everything else about Peter Damian, the one thing you should remember that John of Lodi tells us is that Peter Damian, in his free time, if you can imagine that, in his free time, he whittled wooden spoons for the refectory. Awesome. Yeah, I thought so. And it's a little human touch too, although one could read it another way, I suppose. Just whittling away at the wood, with a sharp knife. That's all that comes out. Anyway, themes. What are some important themes then, that come through the works of Peter Damian? I see three main areas.


First of all, the penitential life. And within this orb of penitence includes solitude. Penance played a very crucial role in monastic life for Peter Damian. The monks call themselves penitentes, which is also used as a phrase by other groups. But their heroes were the great spiritual monastic athletes of the desert. And so, at least during Peter Damian's days as prior, the vigils, the staying awake all night if you can, in prayer, the discipline, fasting, all very important at Fuente Avalana. Almost to the point where they were competing


with one another, it seems. But they did that in the desert too. It fits right in. That whole spiritual athletics genre. Also like the Syrian monastics. You know, I can stand on my pillar longer than you can. That type of thing. The theme of solitude comes across in so many of his works. Certainly all of his monastic works. And later on in other works, where he will take a digression and tell whoever he's writing to at that time on whatever issue how he's suffering not being able to live the solitude of Fuente Avalana. Because he has to do this or has to do that by way of ministry and that he yearns to go back into the desert as he puts it.


Also the care of souls which he saw in a certain light as part of his penance in the sense that he was called to such active church life and embraced that and did a very good job at it. But he saw it as part of his cross that he bore as well. And so I put it within the penitential general theme. Penitential life. The second main theme or thematic area would be compunction which comes through his writings very strongly. Certainly having compunction in a monastic life is unnecessary it's a given for Peter Damian. Everyone who becomes a monk should have compunction for his


sinfulness, for his weakness for his history but not just for that. For his ongoing inadequacy to live the life of Christ in a full way. And to embrace the weaknesses of one's brothers in a full way and in compassion. Also saw that as part of compunction. A minor theme is fuga undi. This whole idea of fleeing the world keeps resurfacing in P.D.'s letters and works throughout his life. And whenever dealing with the whole action contemplation seesaw certainly within his own


life but even theoretically this theme of fuga undi for monks to flee the world comes to the fore. Strongly. Also the whole theme of the passion of Christ for a place that was named Holy Cross Peter Damian certainly was true to the patronal thrust. A lot of his work deals with the whole and mirrors and brings in images of Christ's passion throughout his works. And also within this general area and I don't remember why I put


this one under compunction. I don't remember. Is the whole issue of the unity of the church and of course in Drama of Swabiska that's going to be very powerfully put about the hermit the place of the hermit to the church and the unity of the church and the unity of the church in each individual member of the church the church within the individual. The last the third and last general area of thematic writings would be his whole thing with demonology. It's a whole other area and you have to go to, there isn't just like a demonorum or something like that. You have to, a little bit here, a paragraph there, you know, it's just all over his


writings but not in a systematic way. Last time I mentioned all the chapters of Romuald dealing with demons quite a list of chapters in the life of Romuald. But in his other works too he uses the image of demons and fighting the demons. Certainly whenever he's writing about solitude you run into the demons because the demons don't like monks in solitude. They don't like they come to the surface in solitude and they force the monk to battle and it becomes the test of the monk. And also another part of this theme is the great adventure of living the privilege of love is battling demons. The great adventure of love is dealing with


the whole issue of evil. Okay. Next time any questions or comments? Denouncements. Defamations. Attacks. Positive strokes. I got one. There we go. Next time we'll deal with the triple good and then after that we go into the historical overview which is extreme. That's my part. I'm really interested in our history. that's quite exciting. But first we'll look at the triple good which excites Joseph and others of course.