Chapter Seven, Part Seven
The third degree of humility is, that for the love of God we subject ourselves to a superior in all obedience, imitating Christ, of whom the Apostle says: "He became obedient unto death" (Phil 2:8).
This third degree, or rung, of humility seems especially hard to climb for us Westerners. Individualism reigns supreme around here. If not in the outer realm of Ayn Rand-inspired political positions, it reigns inwardly through our enthroned egos, our unfeigned devotion to "our own truth."
We must learn, St. Benedict understands, to comply with the wisdom of another, if we have any hope of shaking off the shackles of our cultural delusion. None of us has flawless perception or impeccable insight. No one can stand alone in the final reckoning between Truth and Falsehood. We each have one voice among many voices, one word among many words. Our work is to listen for the voice and for the word of Christ in the moments we are given to live.
Our Father Benedict's intention is for each human being to discover and live according to his true Self, created as a unique expression of God's own life. But, ironically, if the only voice we heed is our own, we find ourselves unable to embark on the inner journey, unable to climb the mystical ladder that will, through perseverance, lead us there.