Monastic History

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Monastic History Class

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If I could see the novices, right afterwards, just for one minute. Are either one of you cooking? You two? Okay. John Aldrona doesn't cook, so. Okay. Also, I have finished, I've been working on the last few days, my bibliography for, at working up my course in Commodities History. And I have some 80 entries now, and then it'll probably go up to about 100 when I get back from Commodity. I need to, there are things they have that we just don't have, especially on certain things. Commodities, like we don't get it, so. Musician. Graziano. We have enough on Ambrugio, Traversari, but a few of these biggies that I want to put


into the course, I have to get the stuff there. Also, some local histories of the various houses, which we haven't got any big houses. I'll have to get there, there's some happening here. Now, if anybody would like a copy of this bibliography, just let me know, and I'll make a copy for you. Realize that out of the 80 entries, 70 of them are in Italian, German, or French, or Latin. So, if you have any one of those languages, there'll be something in here for you. This is our Commodities History. This is the preliminary bibliography I'm using. So, if anybody wants that, even if you just put it in a file, because you know that later on, you're going to learn the languages, and later on, you'll have the abilities. Let me know, and I'll run it off to you. And there's no rush, because I've got it in my computer. I want to see the analysis right after class, just for a minute.


Okay? And you all brought your readers, yes? Good. So, you've all read the selections from Picomius. We'll wait until we get to Picomius, if you have anything to say about that, or any reflections on it. What I want to do today is finish up the general remarks on Egyptian Sonovatism, and then I think we'll be able to finish Picomius today. So that next time, we will do Shenoudi of Atrepe, who's a real kick. He's the other side of the Sonovites in the Egyptian desert. And begin Basil, Basilian monasticism. So we're going to Cappadocia next week. Ergo, for next week, for next Wednesday, you need to read the section on Basil. Now, there's sections in there, selections of just one of his works in the reader.


What is it? Something on the... His Aesthetical Works. His Aesthetical Works, yeah. So that's from the, if you know the Fathers of the Church series, you know, the one you want to learn. The one in there, Aesthetical Works, I chose some things from there, from the Greater and Larger Books, probably. You'll notice that most of these readings are right in the beginning of the course. So, after a few weeks, after February probably, you won't have any more readings. So you'll have two left, but you'll have to wait a few weeks. So the reader is going, we're going to zip right through that reader, because a lot of the documents that I have there are from the earlier years in Aesthetical History. Okay, so that means next time we meet, also bring the reader, in case we want to talk


about the particular selections. I would think with Basil, we may not, but you may find some things in there you want to bring him. Look, when you're reading what he has to say, look for differences in what we've experienced thus far in this primitive beginnings of monasticism, and what's going on with Basil and his type of monasticism. We'll talk about that lecture-wise, anyway. I have some handouts here, but we'll wait until we get to the corners. Did you bring your maps? Good. Okay, we'll need those for when we get to the corners also. I know you've got another biggie for you. These are great maps. I'm going to put these in your file. Here's monastic life from 300 to 700, including what is now France. So we'll have the West and the East, and Cappadocia, it's all there, Palestine, and


all the little crosses where the big monasteries were, da-da-da-da-da. So we'll get that in just a few minutes. Okay, what I was finishing up with then last time were the elements of Egyptian synovatism in general, and I said there were four main elements, the first one being regularity. The second one is herarium, which is tied to regularity, right? The herarium, the schedule. So regularity is basically, we're taking this linguistically, we're taking it pretty strictly. Regula, regula, meaning rule. So the regularity part, although it's tied to herarium, it's its own beast also. We're saying with synovites in Egypt, we get written rules. They put things into writing, and people have a setup, a plan of action.


Whereas with the anchorites, no, you get these collected sayings, wise sayings and little stories and whatnot, but you don't have this da-da-da-da-da-da with the subheads and all the rules of the house. The herarium among the Egyptian synovites was very subtle. It's nothing daunting at all. Even if the rules can look a little daunting from time to time, their own schedule was fairly free, in the sense that there was nothing that was absolutely common. You really didn't have to show up for anything. That is, there was nothing in the schedule where everybody had to be there. Okay? In the Egyptian desert. That sounds nice, huh? I'll have to write that down. Jonah thought that sounded nice. We're including divine office, mass, or let's call it Eucharist at that time.


Oh, excuse me, not Eucharist. I didn't mean Eucharist. I meant the divine office, the liturgy, huh? Liturgy of the hours is what I meant. You don't have to go. Even the meals is not an absolute, but that's as close as an absolute as you can get in the Egyptian synovitic desert. That is, if there's anything you should try to get to, it's the meals. Because according to the rules, they're heaviest on that one. But even then, they're fairly flexible. And the rules are much more ritualized than we have them nowadays, with the various prayers and readings and the whole business. So if you know anything about, have read any books about the monasteries of Mount Athos or attended lectures or have been there, there are a number of laurae and monasteries on


Athos that still work that way. You don't have to go to anything. If you do, fine, and you can flow in and flow out. You know, they come in the middle of the thing and join in the singing and then dance out, you know. It's all very, very free and flexible. And that's how it was evidently, schedule-wise, among these synovites. Another part of that element ... Oh, you know, I'm really off today. I think it's because of the hard day yesterday. No, that's okay. Let me make this correction. Heraurium is not the second point. It's the second point under regularity. Rules and then Heraurium. And there's still a third point under regularity. And that is, if you've got a regula and you've got a sort of a schedule that people sort


and follow, what else do you need? If we're talking about coming into a group, living as synovites with an Abba at the head, what else is there going to be, too? I mean, it might be free, but it can't be all that free, huh? It can't be chaotic. Discipline. Discipline. Exactly. Discipline. So, you need some kind of supervision. Even with the flexibility, they had a definite system for supervision. But it's interesting how this works out. We would think of it as discipline. That is, supervision of the monks or regulation of the monks. Use that etymologically again. The monks being ruled, that is. But primarily not out of discipline for the various rules, small r. All they do regularly. But for the spiritual reason.


We're talking synovium now. Among these synovites, the main reason for this series of deans that they set up. Sort of like minor superiors in the community. There was a certain number, depending on how big the communities were. And they were to share in the spiritual supervision or spiritual help to the community of the Abba. So they shared in the Abba's ministry to the community. Interesting. Because in the West, what you're going to get is a lot. You're going to have deans set up, for instance, with the rule of Benedict, huh? But it's going to be primarily, I think, for discipline. More than the spiritual. You have both there, always. That would be ideal. But the real reason, the West tends to be more disciplined than spiritual ministry.


When you get to somebody like the rule of the master. So the big rule preceding the time of Benedict. Just preceding the time of Benedict. How many of you are familiar with the rule of the master? You've read something at least. Yeah. You know what it tastes like. There you get the epitome of having minor superiors for nothing but get out the rulers from the old grade school days. They're there to pound the rules into the monks and to discipline them to make sure everything is running like a train. Okay. The second major element then for the Cenobites is dispossession. It's very big for them. Well, it's pretty big for the Anchorites too, isn't it? I mean, just look at Abba Anton.


He read the Vita Antonia. How did he start out? He just gave away everything and went and lived in a tomb. I mean, that's pretty dispossessed. In Pacomian monasticism, the aspect of dispossession is really stressed, real big. Just in general, it is. As it will be with Benedict also later on. Of course, remember the rule of Benedict is going to have a profound influence on all the Western rules like the rule of Benedict. When we study the rule of Benedict, I'll have a diagram for you showing you all the different things that flow into the rule of Benedict. All the different rules and sayings. It's incredible how much goes into that formulation by that time. Just in 300 years, what would have happened? In fact, maybe when we get to Benedict, I'll share that with you here in this class.


In the Pacomian setup, there's absolutely no private ownership at all. At all. In the idio-rhythmic cycle, or form of monasticism, what do I mean by idio-rhythmic? What am I referring to with idio-rhythmic? That's a common monastic term, but unless you've studied church history or Eastern theology, Eastern spirituality. What does idios come from? It comes from the Greek. What does it mean? Yes. Like idiosyncrasy. Own. Your own or the self. Yes. Okay. So the rhythm is one's own. So we're talking about out in the desert, the Anchorites, where each, they have their own thing.


They have their own rhythms, their own setup, with just a couple of disciples or whatever, each doing their own thing. They only come together once, what is it, on weekends. So idio-rhythmic. So we talk about idio-rhythmic monasticism today, you're talking about, for instance, the skeet situation. I think you'd call that, yeah. Well, it depends. But with them, you know, you could have your own property. You probably didn't have a lot, living out in the desert wilds of Egypt. But you don't make the point like Picomius does, that you can't have anything. Nothing's yours. It's the community's. You don't have that with the other ones. There's no community to be the owner. They have what they need, and they make their money enough to do hospitality for visiting monks. But their concern is not taking away everything.


Whereas with Picomius, it's already becoming communal. It's the community's property. It's the, it can come apart, type of thing. That's what Cenobitism is all about, vis-a-vis poverty. Okay, the third main element, then, is the higher forms of prayer. The higher forms of prayer. We don't have an awful lot to go by with the Picomian evidence we have regarding contemplation. But if we look to Cassian, just for a moment, we can see something about this. That is, with Cassian, already with Cassian, you have, in the same person, in the same monastic theory, two rather antagonistic standpoints, standing side by side, or positions, regarding contemplation.


First of all, with Cassian, you have the whole idea that we're all on a journey. We're all on a spiritual journey. So it's a dynamic approach, a process-type approach. John Cassian's, in fact, process for monastic perfection. And we'll treat that very subject when we get to Cassian, down the line. But with Cassian, you have the active phase of one's journey being equated with Cenobium. And the contemplative phase is being aligned with the desert, or the hermit, the hermit life. And so for Cassian, the Cenobium becomes a lower state, normally. Or one that only reaches its fulfillment in the hermit.


However, in his Conference 19, John Cassian, both Cenobitic and hermitical lives are proposed as two parallel ways. Each with its own goal, and each completing itself. This is the same man, right? And so this conception, or this viewpoint, although it still maintains, there's a certain flavor that the hermitical is still higher. That's not to put down the Cenobium. The Cenobium has its own authenticity and its own goals, etc. But all through Cassian, you're going to have this sort of, eh, I remember the desert, how I miss the desert, how I miss the... You know, because, well, you'll see when we treat him, he traveled all and lived among these Egyptian desert fathers. Before he ended up in Gaul, at the behest of his Pope friend, making or setting up monasticism for the West in Gaul.


In practice, Cassian sees contemplation as possible in the Cenobitic life. Possible. But the nostalgia that he has for the desert is always tempered in Cassian by the realism. The realistic view that solitude within community and the contemplative gifts within community are something one has to work at, for the most part. Because, you know, he's living Cenobitically there. And so even though he can remember, with nostalgia and whatnot, theoretically, in practico, he's seeing the possibilities in how this has to somehow get worked out in Western monasticism, within a different situation.


He doesn't have this dichotomy of active, contemplative, and theory, and practice, and all... Oh, excuse me, not Cassian. I'm switching now. Pacomius doesn't have all these dualities, huh, that we tend to think of as normal in our contemporary monastic theory. Active, contemplative, Cenobitic, Aramidic theory, practice, apotheia, and then the black hat, you know. No, Pacomius isn't into all of that theory stuff. For him, for Pacomius, contemplation isn't anything else but having a taste, or let's say, being hungry for the things of God. And if you're hungry for God, if you're hungry for the things of God, the experience of God, you are in contemplation. That is what contemplation is.


And the way you're going to get there, more and more and more, is to have purity of heart. That is, if you live a life of purity of heart, that will lead into a communion of contemplative union, according to Pacomius. Without going into all kinds of hairy theories. That isn't Pacomius' style. We don't have a philosopher like Pacomius. We don't have a strong theologian. This is not an invagrius, right, in Pacomius. The last, fourth and last element, then, in the general treatment of the elements of Cenobitism, is enclosure. Or, let's say, enclosure and outsiders. That is, this is different from the deserts of Maitreya and Cetus, huh?


What are we talking about with the Cenobium? We're talking walls. They've definitely got an enclosure, and there's good reasons for it. If you want to stay alive, it becomes increasingly more important to have those walls, and have them higher. And they got them. It's a very hard to miss, right there, walls around the monastery. They've kind of abandoned and hungered for martyrdom. Well, yeah, literal martyrdom, yeah. Because, once again, all these, you know, remember that original impulse was to be a martyr since no one else is being persecuted. But once the persecutions start again, or in this case, hordes of, you have a lot of monks quickly building walls, yeah. Good point. We were too, I suspect, most of us.


Put barbed wire on the garden walls. These Cenobites had a definite enclosure, and many of them banded together into Cenobia in order to have the support of others, as well as the physical security. And when it came to guests, yes, they had guests. But the guests had their own quarters. They were able to come to the Opus Dei, that is, they were able to come to the liturgy. But they had their own quarters, and the women's quarters were outside the walls. I don't know if in the first Pacomia, maybe if we'd sit down and look it up in the rules of Pacomia, we'd find out that the guest house for men was also outside the walls.


But the one for women was. And the monks didn't go many places. You could go to funerals. For instance, if your relatives, close relatives died, or if you had family members who got real sick and needed help, needed care temporarily, the monk would be given permission to go for that. With the proviso, and this is stated very strongly in the Pacomian structure, and we'll hear many echoes of this down the line. When he comes back, he's not to say anything, anything about anything he saw, anything he heard, anyone he saw, any clothes he saw, any food he ate. I assume everybody understands why that is that way.


Anybody have a question about that? Is that where Manek is from? Well, and others. It'll just become part of the monastic practice. Just shut your mouth about the outside. We're having a hard enough time living this life and living this theory without bringing all that stuff back into our consciousness. Let's get into Pacomias. I have here just a chronological table. Who's missing? Ezekiel. So one of you, Jonah, do you want to? You're probably checking on the exact human infirmary anyway, aren't you? Keep one for Ezekiel. Was there another person missing? No. This is just a nice little chronological table of these early years in the desert, the monasticism.


So it gives you some dates, some pointers. The Pacomian Quenonia I was talking about is a three-volume set from Cistercian studies. The first volume here are the lives of Pacomians. The famous lives are the Boheric Life, which is Coptic, which is written in Coptic. And then the first Greek Life. Those are the two real famous ones. And of course, obviously, the Greek Life is a Greek. And there's a number of other fragments and some other lives too. The second volume of this Pacomian Quenonia is the Pacomian Rules and sort of the chronicles of those early years in the monastery.


The third, I don't have my own copy this way. I photocopied my own copy, part of it. And the part I kept are the letters and testimonies of Horziasi. Horziasi was Horzi. Horzi, let's call him Horzi. Horziasi. And he was the second big leader. Not necessarily the second chronologically, he's not, but the second biggie after Pacomians. Who carries on the tradition. Okay. The dates for Pacomius are about 292 to 346. As you can see on that handout I just gave you, about the third or fourth entry is the birth of Pacomius. And if you go down about 10, you see his death at 346.


His spiritual journey as a monk began around the year 394. And that was when he joined a hermit in the desert named Palamon. If you knew that date. What did I say, 394? 294. 294, he lived almost 100. Two years old. Oh no, not on him, that's on somebody else. Pardon? He was only two years old. 314. This is just a bad day. It's a real bad day. 314, he joined a hermit named Palamon. And lived with him. This is after he was a Roman soldier for a number of years. He was not born a Christian. He converted as a soldier, as a Roman soldier.


So his conversion experience happened during his army life. Palamon, good hermit that he was, was in what tradition? Well, give me a name. Antonian tradition. You see, when you're talking about this hermit, the hermitical Egyptian experience, you can call it Antonian. They often do in books, in fact. So this hermit was in the Antonian tradition. The next year, 315, so he lives with him for one year. The next year, 315, he and a number of disciples who have already gathered around him, begin a monastery at Tabernesis.


Tabernesis. Get your maps out. We can locate Tabernesis. That would be the biggie, yeah, the biggie map. So if you find Thebes in there. It's just north of Thebes. Okay, see where it says Arabicus, Sinus Arabicus. That's the water there, what is that called? The Red Sea? Sinus Arabicus. If you just go left of Arabicus, you'll find Tabernesis. See it there? So he's right on the river too, huh? And then if you go down a ways, you'll find Thebes. Where is Thebes? It's close. Take my map.


Echo, echo. Okay. So that's already a year later. He's had a lot of formation, huh? Already he's the head of a monastery they're building in Tabernesis. He must have been a very, very charismatic individual to gather disciples around him that quickly and be building a monastery after one year of formation. I can pass these out now too. You can also find it on here probably, although this is a smaller scale. Yeah. If you just look at here again, Tabaid, Tabaid, Tabaid? Down by Thebes. You'll find where Tabernesis is. The print is a little bit larger. Now keep these maps because we're going to need this map when we go to Cappadocia, for


Basel, when we hit Palestinian monasticism, and even when we begin Kashan. This is good for all of those. So hold on to this map. It's a real good map. For 12 years, excuse me, for 22 years, Proconius builds up this community. It becomes huge. Tabernesis becomes a huge monastery. 22 years later, so in 337, just to the north a bit, he builds his first daughter house. It's called Peblum, Peblum, or Peblum.


Sounds like peekaboo. Peblum, Peblum. Eventually, now we're talking about the lifetime of Proconius. So between 337 and 346, eventually there were nine monasteries. Nine monasteries for men and two monasteries for women. And this became the Proconian congregation, or the Proconian familia, the family. By when? I don't know when. I'm assuming it's during his lifetime. That was one of the hallmarks of Proconian, is that when it started growing, it just grew incredibly fast. They could very well have built all these monasteries in the same years, just in different places, because they got so many people coming to them. Their congregation probably, you know it's always hard with numbers in these early years,


but they think probably really did number in the thousands in the Proconian family. Although you have people arguing against that. But even they will say it's still the biggest group. Whatever the numbers were, it was the biggest group and it grew phenomenally quickly. The rule of Proconius we have was developed over a lived experience in the monasteries. Makes sense. So as they were going along, this rule started being formulated. Of how to put order to all of this. And we have a short version of that rule in this work called Lausiac History by Palladius. He's one of these people, we're going to see a number of them, who is like tour guides. They took groups of people through the desert regularly.


Rufinus was another. He was the classic one. He would take tours of the abbas in the desert. It's all these fine dressed women from Rome and all this stuff. They'd have a caravan and he'd be the tour guide. Anyway, we have written records, thank God. We got these written records. Rufinus' work was History of the Monks in Egypt. The famous one that we have. We have a number of translations of this in the Bible and in different languages. This is really, the rule of Proconius, is really the prototype of all the rules in the West. This is a primary source. And so if you're going to study the rule of Benedict with a passion, you definitely want to read the rule of Proconius, as well as many others.


It is the prototype of all rules in the West and the East. Proconius is a big saint in the East. Eastern Church also. Why not? He is in the East. His rule was translated by none other than Jerome, the great Jerome, in the year 404. So, I mean, this is after he's dead, been dead, what, 60 years? But this translation that Jerome made profoundly influenced Basil, and Basil used it in his formulation of his type of monasticism. Benedict used it, Benedict knew about it. Also, Caesarius of Arles, whom we will treat specifically down the line. Do you need a spelling on that? Caesar, with an I-U-S. Caesarius of Arles, A-R-L-E-S.


This is going to be another one in Gaul, present-day France. Real important. This rule of Proconius spread, it spread to Ethiopia first. Okay, so which direction is it spreading? We all studied geography. You'd be surprised how many people don't know geography nowadays. It's incredible. North and south. So it spread southward. It spread southward, and also north, northwest, northwest. So up into Rome. And mainly to Rome through Athanasius.


Excuse me. Athanasius was still ticking. And it also moved east, northeast, to Palestine. The rule of Proconius. And over into Asia Minor. If you look at the map, you have to wonder why Greece is so blank. So blank? Yeah. Yeah, it really is. Monastically, it isn't. Well, it stays pretty pagan there for a long time. Later on, it's going to become, for a long time, a jewel of monastic life. Even today, we have the remnants of large communities in Athos, at least. Was there a Pauline resistance to monasticism? Pauline. Paul had influence in Greece. Oh, monasticism really happened a long time after the apostles were gone.


You mean as churches? Just trying to figure out why Greeks were left out of this. Yeah. I don't know. I mean, I know that we have Greek people, but most of them went to Palestine to join the monasteries in the desert there. Why they didn't set up their own monasteries in Greece, I don't know. There was, at this time, there certainly was the thing about desert. We're talking physical desert. They wanted the physical deserts. So they went to Syria and Palestine and Egypt. And I don't know how important the Christian communities were at this time, in general, in Greece. I don't know. In Greece itself. Greek language and Greek influence certainly was profound, at this time, all over the place. But I really don't know.


Interesting to, you know, search that out, why that would be. The main people who spread this rule were, as I said, Basil. And Palladius and his Lasiak history. Rufinus and his history of the monks of Egypt. And wherever that went, they had part of the rule in there. So it spread around. Jerome, of course, who did his own translation. And Melania and Paola, these rich women from the West who ended up with Jerome, making that foundation outside of Bethlehem. That monastic foundation, which also took care of pilgrims who were coming to the Holy Land in those early years. Speaking of pilgrims, Etheria. Do you know Etheria?


This is a woman in the, what, 4th century? Who left us a written diary, written dialogue of her travels from the West down into the Holy Land and back. Travels of Etheria. She also helped spread the rule of Peconius. Etheria, you can spell it either way, A or E, like the substance ether. You see it with an A, E, or an E. Etheria. Hilary of Poitiers later on, Gaul, is going to become a champion of this rule. And Eusebius of Vercelli is also going to become a champion of this rule. Just to mention the church fathers and mothers who used this rule. Also Athanasius mentions it too. After Peconius, so about the time Jerome is doing his translation of it, 404 I think.


Just before that, in the years before that, the desert is a mess. So we're already moving towards those years when we have invasions, we have massacres. We have the whole Origenist controversy where you got them at one another's throats. Over whether, the question is whether you're going to see God physically in the desert or not. You know, and they literally slaughtered one another over these questions. There became, or there came to be a real need to get things down in writing. And so that's why you have this rule of Peconius being translated and spread all over. And why they start collecting all these sayings of these Abbas in the desert. The Apophegmeta Patrum. This is very, very important. You're going to run into this in monasticism all the time.


These are just those sayings of the desert fathers. The Apophegmeta are the word, the sayings. But it refers to the special kind of sayings. These little wise desert sayings. The Apophthems in English. The Apophthems. All this stuff started being collated in various languages and written down. Because these people were dying and being slaughtered. And things were happening at a fairly fast clip in the 400s. So there was this real need for people like these Palladius and Rufinus travel agencies to get things down. Their accounts down in writing. And it's mainly through them that this spread through all the Dan Empire. Mostly by these Berbers.


These wandering nomads. Who, like in these later years, have become known as groups of nomadic thieves and murderers. They just go through, it's not just the monks, they'll go through any settlement. And slice off everybody's head and take whatever they can get their hands on. And then destroy everything in the process. And then move on to the next. That was their lifestyle. Not a happy group. But when you start talking about hundreds and hundreds dying and whole monasteries being wiped out. We're talking about the invasions. Whereas the origin thing, it's up and down, up and down for a few years. And then finally it breaks, it blows up in 399.


And then the desert becomes ex-originist. Because they're all expelled. The originists are all expelled. They run off to Palestine, to Syria, and then northward to Constantinople. And many of them end up in the west, in Gaul, Italy. What was their lifestyle like in the Petronian setup? We're actually going to finish comments on that. It was very, very difficult to get in. Surprising, since they had thousands. Since they had to build, what, 11 more monasteries after Tabernaces. It was very, very hard. They took the whole thing about... The whole thing about... The... Being humiliated, remember in the Rule of Benedict? It says they should stand outside the gate for 3 days and be humiliated and all that stuff. Well, this is in Picomius already. And they really mean it. They go out and people scream at them and say foul things.


And you just had to put up with it for a while. And this was a sign that, hey, they can take it. You know, community life or whatever. I mean, I think that's basically the practical reason for doing it. The other reason is the whole spiritual thing about getting rid of whatever pride you have. Just swallow it all, spit it out. That type of thing. Because that's what you have to do in your community life. A monastery, a typical monastery in the Picomian family numbers about 40 monks. Oh no, excuse me. Excuse me. I'm getting that wrong. The typical Picomian monastery is comprised of 40 houses. Now, 40 question mark. They're not sure of the... They think that's about what it was. 40 houses. So you're subdivisions. You have subdivisions with your deans.


And then there's a group of those, and those make up the walled city that becomes the monastery. So it's like if each one of our cells had six or seven of us living there. But, you know, if each one was the dean and then we had a Rolando Robert and that type of thing, we had a big wall around the whole property. Okay? Be like that sort of thing. And each one of these houses was ruled by a proposing to us. I have the word there for you. And all those proposing to you, let's call them deans, all these deans are under one man, an abbot, for that monastery. So there's an abbot, 40 deans, and then disciples around each one of those 40. Now here's where they say, now wait a minute. We're talking tens of thousands if we can keep this up. So they're not sure if 40 is correct. But anyway, there's a number of houses, and that's the settlement.


Each house would take its own week of duty. So the house under Epiphylus, let's say, within this monastery. It's Epiphylus' week. And all the monks in that take care of all the duty, all the kitchen, all the... And each house takes a turn. We only do it maybe once a year if you've got 52 houses, right? So they would still have, like, all the houses would come together to eat and pray? Like... Well... I'm assuming that. But I don't know for sure. I don't have a recollection of whether each house is doing that or whether... I assume they were coming together. Because it still goes under the discretion of the abbot regarding meals and whatnot. And it would seem to me that if it were on a local level, it would be in the propositives.


So I'm assuming they come together for meals when they come. Remember the flexibility of the Pacomian setup. So each house would take its turn during its week of all the grudge work. And then they're done, and the next house takes its turn. That's how they worked it, in shifts. And it was sort of like... If you remember what the medieval guild system was like... This is sort of what the Pacomian... So there was the house that did the pottery. There was the house... Each had their thing. Like a guild system. Like an early guild system. And so everybody... All the bases were covered. A self-sufficient city, basically. Their prayer hours were at dawn, at noon, in the evening, at meal time,


bedtime, and midnight. And they used, in their office, psalms, scripture, and prayers. Sound familiar? On weekends, they celebrated anaphora. Cedric, what's anaphora? Here's your chance. Now, in these early years, anaphora is more than what we think of anaphora today. So anaphora today is the canopy. Well, it wasn't like synaxes. If you remember the abbas in the desert, they would get together on weekends and have synaxes, celebrate synaxes. That was like shared psalms and reading a homily


and singing, you know. And then this here, the anaphora, this is a little developed. This is that plus communion. So you had your canon, your early canon, and flowing into a communion run. So anaphora in the Egyptian desert means that. So they're doing their prayers together, but they add a communion run to it. Early Eucharist. Okay? Early Eucharist. And this was, yeah. So they had priests in their community. This was done, I was just going to say, this was done by visiting clerics that they had who came by on the weekends. If they didn't, if no priests showed up, they trekked, just like the abbas did in the desert, they trekked off to the local parish.


Excuse me, my nose is itching. With the comiests, we have non-clerical monasticism. Now, we'll, well, that's not important. Twice a week, they had conferences with the abbas. Three times a week, they had catecheses. Oh, I think of catechism, huh? They had just basic treatments of the fundamentals of faith. Again, a lot of these people coming into the comiest structure are these ignorant fellahim, very simple people who are coming in. There's a need for catecheses. The monks were expected to read the scriptures.


And so there had to be some training for reading going on, obviously. If monks are expected, most of these are coming out of the desert, they don't know how to read or write. There's some kind of schooling going on. And monks were able, in the comiest structure, to speak with one another at any time about spiritual matters. Their concept of reading, is that still like a practice in Rome, where you read out loud, because it's like... Even with Benedict, you never read in public. I mean, privately, that was not considered reading. Or, if you read in your cell, you read it out loud. Yeah, we're going to see that for centuries now. But that is the way they're doing it. Or, in these earlier groups, you'll have one reading to a group of others, out loud. So it's really ritualized, also. It's like there's a community. It isn't that they didn't have silence. Silence was supposed to be everywhere and always,


in the comiest system. Except for discussions about spiritual matters. That could happen whenever and wherever. But it had to stay in the spiritual plane. Because as soon as levity crept in, that wasn't allowed. You see some of the same things in the comiest, that you have Benedictines down the line, about levity, no laughter, sort of thing. Again, standard phrases that you'll see in these early rules. Again, the work was highly organized according to trade. Sort of this semi-quasi-guild system. But there was a strong emphasis on manual labor. So whether you were in pottery, or you were out in the gardens, or whatever, you're working with, you know, your physical energy. And that was for what reason?


Same in the desert, it's the same in Benedict, down the line. Don't be idle, against idleness. I mean, just the act of working, whatever. Don't be idle. Because idle is the demon. Idleness. One last word. Pecomius appointed Petronius to take his place. This is before he died. Pecomius appointed... No, we're not talking democracy here, huh? He appointed to Petronius... Excuse me, Pecomius appointed to Petronius and said, he is my successor. But the monks had the best laugh, because Petronius only lived a couple of weeks. And he died. And, of course, the AC took over.


Now, theater is in there, too. Theodore was the first co-adjuder. So he was the first ruler who shared the rule with another. Okay? And then took over, when that one died. Theodore was also an early, early leader there. Because they had the whole problem, begun with Pecomius saying, Petronius is going to be my successor. They had a whole... These early years had a whole problem with how do we pick a leader? And so by the year 350, which is only four years after Pecomius is gone,


they decide they've got to have co-adjuders. That is, before the person dies, the other person is in place with him, ruling with him, and then there's accountability. And that's how you get co-adjuders. That's what co-adjuders... We had co-adjuders right down until the Second Vatican Council. And among abbots. Among bishops, of course, we still have all of those co-adjuders. Much of what we know then comes from the writings of Porciasei and Theodore. These two early leaders after the time of Pecomius. Now, I've finished my treatment of Pecomius. We still want to give time for discussion of the life of Pecomius, so you're going to bring the readers back next time anyway because we're going to hit Basel also. So next time we'll start with any discussion or questions


or whatever you want to do with the readings from Pecomius, and then we'll go on with Shenoudi, who's a king. Okay, if the novices will stay for one minute.