The monastic order.

history of religion tells us about the spiritual quest of various peoples through the ages.Faith has always been a companion of man, it gave meaning to his life and motivate not only the achievements in the field of internal, but also on the worldly victory.People have been known - a social, and therefore often seek to find like-minded people and create a union, which could work together to move to the target.An example of such a community are the monastic orders, which included brothers of the same faith, united in the understanding of how to implement the covenants mentors in life.

Egyptian hermit

Monasticism originated not in Europe, it takes its origin in the vast deserts of Egypt.Here in IV century there were hermits who sought to approach the spiritual ideals in a secluded away from the world with its passions and vanity.Find no place among the people, they went to the desert, living in the open air or in the ruins of some buildings.Often, they were joined by the followers.Together they worked, preached, prayed.

monks in the world were employees of different professions, and each brought something different to the community.In the year 328 Pachomius, who was once a soldier, he decided to organize the life of the brothers and founded a monastery, which was regulated activities in the charter.Soon they began to appear similar associations in other places.

Light Knowledge

In 375 AD Basil organized the first large monastic community.Since then, the history of religion flowed in a different direction: the brothers together not only prayed and learned the spiritual laws, but engaged in the study of peace, understanding of nature, philosophical aspects of life.Through the efforts of the monks through the dark ages of medieval past wisdom and knowledge of mankind, not lost in the past.

Reading and improvement in the scientific field is the responsibility of the novices and the monastery at Monte Cassino, founded by Benedict of Nursia, considered the father of monasticism in Western Europe.


530 a year is considered the date when the first monastic order.Benedict was known for his asceticism, and around it quickly formed a group of followers.They were among the first Benedictine monks as named in honor of their leader.

life and work of the brothers was conducted in accordance with the charter, designed Benedict of Nursia.The monks could not change the place of service, to own any property and were subject to fully abbot.Regulations prescribed offering prayers seven times a day, constant physical labor, punctuated by hours of rest.Charter defined the meals and prayers, the punishment for the guilty, necessary for reading the book.

structure monastery

Subsequently, many religious orders of the Middle Ages were built by the Benedictine regulations.Save and internal hierarchy.Head of Abbe was chosen from among the monks and the bishop asserts.He became the representative of the life of the monastery in the world, leading the brothers with the assistance of several assistants.The Benedictines have been fully and humbly obey the abbot.

inhabitants of the monastery were divided into groups of ten, headed by the deans.Prior to the Abbot (assistant) to monitor compliance with the statute, but the important decisions were made after the meeting of all the brothers together.


Benedictines have not only become an assistant of the Church in the new evangelization of peoples.In fact, it is thanks to them that we now know about the content of many of the ancient manuscripts and manuscripts.The monks engaged in copying books, preserving monuments of the philosophical thought of the past.

was compulsory education from the age of seven.The number of objects included music, astronomy, arithmetic, rhetoric and grammar.Benedictines saved Europe from the harmful influence of the barbarian culture.Huge libraries of monasteries, deep architectural traditions, knowledge in the field of agriculture have helped to save a civilization at a decent level.

Decline and Revival

In the reign of Charlemagne has to a time when the Benedictine monastic order had not the best of times.The Emperor brought tithes to the Church, demanded that the monasteries of a certain number of soldiers who gave the power of the bishops of the vast territory of the peasants on them.Monasteries became enriched and be a piece of cake for anyone eager to increase their own wealth.

representatives of temporal power were able to establish the spiritual community.The bishops will broadcast the Emperor, more immersed in worldly affairs.Abbots new monasteries only formally engaged in spiritual matters, enjoying the fruits of donations and trade.The process of secularization has brought to life the movement for the revival of spiritual values ​​fell deeply in the formation of new religious orders.Centre association at the beginning of the X century became a monastery in Cluny.

Klyuniytsy and Cistercians

Abbot Bernon received a gift from the estate of the Duke of Aquitaine in Upper Burgundy.Here, in Cluny, founded a new monastery, free from the secular power and vassal relations.Monastic orders of the Middle Ages experienced a new upswing.Klyuniytsy prayed for all laymen, lived according to the ordinance, based on the provisions of the Benedictines, but more strict in matters of behavior and daily routine.

In the XI century a Cistercian monastic order, who took it a rule to follow the statute, its rigidity discourages many followers.The number of monks increased greatly due to the energy and charm of one of the leaders of the Order, Bernard of Clairvaux.

great many

in XI-XIII centuries new religious orders of the Catholic Church appeared in large numbers.Each of them is something marked in history.Camaldolese famous for their strict charter: they did not wear shoes, welcomed the self-flagellation, do not eat meat, even if they were sick.Carthusians, who honored and strict rules were known as hospitable hosts, who considered charity an essential part of his ministry.One of the main sources of income for them was the sale of liquor, "Chartreuse", which developed the recipes themselves Cartesians.

His contribution to the religious orders in the Middle Ages and made the woman.At the head of the monasteries, including men's, brotherhood Fontevraud stood Abbess.They were considered namestnitsami Virgin Mary.One of the distinguishing points of the charter was a vow of silence.Beguines - the Order, consisting only of women - on the contrary, had the statute.Abbess was chosen from among the followers and all activities directed to the charity track.Beguines could leave the order and marry.

jousting-monastic orders

during the Crusades began to appear new union wing.The conquest of Palestinian land was under appeal to the Catholic Church to liberate Christian holy places from the hands of the Muslims.In the eastern lands directed a large number of pilgrims.They needed to protect in enemy territory.This was the cause of the military order.

members of the new association on the one hand, given the three vows of religious life: poverty, obedience and continence.On the other - they wore armor, always had a sword with him and, if necessary, take part in military campaigns.

Knightly religious orders had a triple structure: it consisted of Chaplains (priests), fellow soldiers, and fellow servants.The head of the Order - GM - was chosen for life, his candidacy affirmed by the Pope, who had supreme power over the union.Chapter along with the Chapter of Priors periodically collected (general assembly, where important decisions were approved by laws of the Order).

to spiritual-monastic associations are the Templars, ion exchangers (Hospitallers), the Teutonic Knights, swordsmen.All were participants in historic events, whose importance can not be overestimated.Crusades with their assistance significantly influenced the development of Europe and the whole world.The name of the holy mission of liberation was due to the cross, which were sewn on the garment knights.Every monastic order used color and shape to transmit the character and the appearance was different from the others.

Fall credibility

At the beginning of the XIII century Church had to deal with a huge number of heresies have arisen.Clerics have lost its former prestige, propagandists talked about the need to reform or abolish the ecclesiastical system, as an unnecessary layer between man and God, condemning great wealth concentrated in the hands of ministers.In response, there was the Inquisition, designed to restore respect for the people of the Church.However, a beneficial role in this activity played a mendicant order, staked a prerequisite for refusal to serve a full property.

Francis of Assisi

In 1207 the Franciscans began to take shape.Its head, Francis of Assisi, saw the essence of his work in preaching and renunciation.He was against the foundation of churches and monasteries, and his followers have met once a year at the appointed place.All the rest of the monks preached to the people.However, in 1219 still a Franciscan monastery was built at the insistence of the Pope.

Francis of Assisi was known for his kindness, the ability to provide easy and with full dedication.His love for the poetic talent.Canonized just two years after his death, he has gained a lot of followers and revived respect for the Catholic Church.At different times of the Franciscan Order were formed branch: the Capuchin Order, Terzian, min, the Observants.

Dominique de Guzman

On monastic associations and the Church believes in the affairs of the fight against heresy.One of the foundations of the Inquisition was the Dominican order, founded in 1205.It became a founder Dominique de Guzman, an implacable fighter against heretics, read austerity and poverty.

Dominican Order one of its main objectives has chosen a high level of training preachers.For the organization of suitable learning conditions were relaxed even initially stringent rules prescribing brothers poverty and constant wandering around the cities.Dominicans thus were not obliged to work hard physically: all of their time, so they dedicated education and prayer.

At the beginning of the XVI century church again in crisis.The commitment of the clergy to luxury and vices undermine credibility.The success of the Reformation clergy forced to seek new ways of honoring the return of the former.Thus it was established the Order of Theatines and then the Society of Jesus.Monastic association sought to return to the ideals of the medieval orders, but time took its toll.While many of the Order exist today, from former greatness little that remained.