was drawn to the monastic life because it seemed to stand for what I
loved most about the faith of my fathers and mothers. I loved how counter-cultural
it was. Monks were not supposed to seek power, or prestige, or money.
They were disciples of Christ, following the Will of God with a radical
simplicity, hospitality, poverty, and faithfulness. But then, I also
was drawn to the life of a monk because of how it seemed very different
from my fundamentalism. I loved how miracles can happen in a monastery.
The life was full of Spirit and seemed to contrast with the cold beam
of my rational faith. There are many things in life that show God’s
presence here and now, not just in history and scripture, according to
monastic spirituality. And the love of God can allow us to sometimes
do things that do not make complete sense to those we love.
--from “Washing Out My Ears,” installment 11 of
“Born Again and Again: Stories of the Spirit, Lessons for the Soul”
this essay in its entirety