Thursday, October 15, 2015

Select Sections from The Carmelite Rule of St. Albert #6

"21 [XVI, xviii]
The apostle therefore recommends silence, when he tells us to work in it; the prophet too
testifies that silence is the promotion of justice; and again, in silence and in hope will be your
strength. Therefore we lay down that from the recitation of Compline you are to maintain
silence until after Prime the following day. At other times, though silence is not to be so
strictly observed, you are to be diligent in avoiding much talking, since scripture states and
experience likewise teaches, sin is not absent where there is much talking; also he who is
careless in speech will experience evil, and the one who uses many words harms his soul.
Again the Lord says in the gospel: an account will have to given on the day of judgement for
every vain word. Each of you is to weigh his words and have a proper restraint for his mouth,
so that he may not stumble and fall through speech and his fall be irreparable and fatal. He is
with the prophet to guard his ways so that he does not offend through the tongue. Silence,
which is the promotion of justice, is to be diligently and carefully observed."

"[21] The Apostle would have us keep silence, for in silence he tells us to work. As the Prophet also makes known to us: Silence is the way to foster holiness. Elsewhere he says: Your strength will lie in silence and hope. For this reason I lay down that you are to keep silence from after Compline until after Prime the next day. At other times, although you need not keep silence so strictly, be careful not to indulge in a great deal of talk, for as Scripture has it - and experience teaches us no less - Sin will not be wanting where there is much talk, and He who is careless in speech will come to harm; and elsewhere: The use of many words brings harm to the speaker’s soul. And our Lord says in the Gospel: Every rash word uttered will have to be accounted for on judgment day. Make a balance then, each of you, to weigh his words in; keep a tight rein on your mouths, lest you should stumble and fall in speech, and your fall be irreparable and prove mortal. Like the Prophet, watch your step lest your tongue give offence, and employ every care in keeping silent, which is the way to foster holiness."

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