Front Page Titles (by Subject) CHAPTER VI: CONCERNING SILENCE - The Rule of St. Benedict
The Online Library of Liberty
A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.
Search this Title:
Also in the Library:
CHAPTER VI: CONCERNING SILENCE - Saint Benedict, The Rule of St. Benedict 
The Rule of St. Benedict, translated into English. A Pax Book, preface by W.K. Lowther Clarke (London: S.P.C.K., 1931).
About Liberty Fund:
Liberty Fund, Inc. is a private, educational foundation established to encourage the study of the ideal of a society of free and responsible individuals.
The text is in the public domain.
Fair use statement:
This material is put online to further the educational goals of Liberty Fund, Inc. Unless otherwise stated in the Copyright Information section above, this material may be used freely for educational and academic purposes. It may not be used in any way for profit.
Let us do what the prophet says: “I said, I will watch my ways, that I transgress not with my tongue. I set a watch upon my mouth, I became dumb and humbled and silent from good.” Here the prophet shows, if one ought sometimes to abstain from speaking good for the sake of keeping silence, how much more ought one to be deterred from evil words on account of the penalty of sin. Wherefore, even though it is always for good and holy converse that tends to edification, let but rare leave to talk be granted to fully trained disciples, on account of the importance of silence; because it is written: “In much speaking thou wilt not escape sin.” And elsewhere: “Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” For to speak and to teach becomes the master, to be silent and to listen beseems the disciple. And so if anything has to be asked of the superior let it be asked with all humility and with reverent subjection.
But all manner of buffoonery and idle, mirth-provoking words we adjudge should be perpetually restrained in every place; and for such discourse we permit not the disciple to open his mouth.