The Rule of St. Benedict: Chapter 70
I have often found it easy to set myself up as judge and executer. From my perspective trapped behind my two small eyes, I succumb to the temptation to act as though I see the world as it is, unadorned and objective. My angry reactions are then justified as acts of defense in the service of Truth and Justice. Our Father Benedict seeks to uproot this disposition here in Chapter 70. Sr. Joan comments,
Benedictine spirituality depended on personal commitment and community support, not on intimidation and brutality. Benedict makes it clear that the desire for good is no excuse for the exercise of evil on its behalf. . . . To become what we hate--as mean as the killers, as obsessed as the haters--is neither the goal nor the greatness of the spiritual life.
As Benedictines, let us consider carefully the posture we assume toward each other, with those we encounter in our daily lives, and with our ideological adversaries. As much as it might appear at times to be the case, we have not been set up as vigilantes for God's own Truth.