The Rule of St. Benedict: Chapter 2, part 4
The religious superior must guard against all criteria that serve to set some people over others. Not only must she be wary of criteria in society at large, such as money, degrees, appearance, or politics, she must guard against criteria within the Church, where those visible acts of devotion and piety that Jesus mentions in Matthew 6 can serve to elevate personal status.
The only acceptable criteria within Benedictine community by which the superior evaluates the vowed members are those of obedience, good works, and humility. Obedience is to the word of Christ heard in prayer and from the superior; good works are the fruit of that obedience; and humility is the attitude that enables the ear to listen and hear.
Our Father Benedict's vision of the cenobitic religious life regarding family and social status is a profound departure from the norm of his or any age. To truly drop one's inherited history, good or bad, at the door and be subjected to evaluation on the basis of one's spiritual identity alone is a step most human beings will never take. It is, quite literally, a radical decision, but one that opens the vowed religious to a beautiful world of true spiritual friendship as described by the 12th century Abbot of the Cistercian monastery at Rievaulx in Yorkshire, Aelred.