Advice from Medieval Monks on Avoiding Distraction

They saw the mind as an inherently jumpy thing. Medieval monks had a terrible time concentrating. And concentration was their lifelong work! Their tech was obviously different from ours. But their anxiety about distraction was not. They complained about being overloaded with information, and about how, even once you finally settled on something to read,[…]

Secluding Nuns in Early Christian Monastic Communities to Avoid Scandal

Since the early days of monasticism, the presence of nuns led to restrictions that limited contact between men and women. Pope Francis recently stated that Catholic nuns in various parts of the world, including Africa, Europe, India and Latin America, have suffered sexual abuse at the hands of priests and bishops. In his comments during a news[…]

Medieval Monasteries: Community Centers of Technology and Education

Monasteries were important centers of learning which educated the young and produced new technologies for agricultural and other needs. By Mark CartwrightHistorian Introduction A medieval monastery was an enclosed and sometimes remote community of monks led by an abbot who shunned worldly goods to live a simple life of prayer and devotion. Christian monasteries had first developed[…]