Why have Christians often established insular communities set apart from the world?
What is a monk? Monakos from greek –alone. A particular person which by their own desire decide to
go out of the world and stay alone.
The Torment of St Antony – Michelangelo. Antony being attacked by 8 demons. Antony – asceticism
from Greek askesis meaning practice or training.
Antony is asceticisming to turn to the God. Antony is battling with the demons. The battle is the idea of
the battle with the temptations.
Salvador Dali- the temptation of Antony. Demons become the temptations of the world. Temptations
such as women (flesh), money etc. Temptations – keeping people away from the God.
Hermit – desert or wilderness.
“If u want to be perfect, sell what u have, give all the proceeds to the poor and come to me” – Antony
does that and he goes to the desert.
Athanasius of Alexandria “ The life of Antony”. There are thousands of men and women going out to the
desert and finding these institutions to get away from the world and go closer to God.
Hagiography – Greek for Holy writings or holy stories.
Why were people doing this? What compelled people to do it and bishops to write about this people
and suggest that this was something to be followed?
Jesus is interpreted as the second Adam. Jesus has redeemed that and he resisted temptation.
Just as Jesus was killed for not denying God etc that is the same thing that Christian monks follow in
their actions. Earliest monks were enjoying this sort of practice.
Mother Mary of Egypt – she was a prostitute. She loved her “work”. She went to the church (built in the
empty tomb of the Jesus) and an unseen force did not let her in. Therefore, she went to the desert in
Judea and she spent 47 years festing.
Why would Mary be so important? Just like Perpetua, it is very sexist. If a woman (like Perpetua