Monk’s Christmas Vow

Preparing for the once-a-year speech

At a monastery high in the mountains, the monks have a rigid vow of silence. Only at Christmas, and only by one monk, and only with one sentence, is the vow allowed to be broken.

One Christmas, Brother Ben is allowed to speak and he says, “I like the mashed potatoes we have with the Christmas turkey!” and he sits down. Silence ensues for 365 days.

The next Christmas, Brother David gets his turn, and he says, “I think the mashed potatoes are lumpy and I hate them!”

Once again, silence for 366 days (it’s leap year). The following Christmas, Brother Rod rises and says, “I am fed up with this constant bickering!”

She who is silent consents. - French Proverb

Liberty is the right to silence. - Unknown

Silence if the eternal duty of man. - Thomas Carlyle

Tea is a religion of the art of life. - Okakura Kakuzo

Silence is a source of great strength. - Lao Tzu

Poetry is what gets lost in translation. - Robert Frost

I've held silence a remedy for harm. - Aeschylus

Every religion at its core is exclusive. - Ravi Zacharias

Silence is the sleep that nourishes wisdom. - Francis Bacon

Silence is the true friend that never betrays. - Confucius

Silence is a place of great power and healing. - Rachel N Remen

Silence is one of the hardest things to refute. - Josh Billings

Decency is indecency's conspiracy of silence. - George Bernard Shaw

Nothing strengthens authority so much as silence. - Leonardo da Vinci

Silence makes idiots seem wise even for a minute. - Carlos R Zafon

Don't talk unless you can improve the silence. - Jorge Luis Borges

Time and silence are the most luxurious things today. - Tom Ford

I drank the silence of God from a spring in the woods. - Georg Trakl

Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich. - Napoleon Bonaparte

The silence is not suppression, instead, it is all there is. - Annie Dillard

A rigorous religion can be conceived and nurtured in ignorance. - Ravi Zacharias

For the man who prays in his heart, the whole world is a church. - Sylvain of Athos

The more you understand silence, that's where the balance comes. - Rick Rubin

To be born in India is to arrive into the world swimming in religion. - Ravi Zacharias

Give me a couple of pages of the Bible, and I'll give you a picture. - Cecil B. DeMille

A thorough knowledge of the Bible is worth more than a college education. - Theodore Roosevelt

Keep silence for the most part, and speak only when you must, and then briefly. - Epictetus

He who does not understand your silence will probably not understand your words. - Elbert Hubbard

I definitely want my son Brooklyn christened, but I don't know into what religion yet. - David Beckham

You can listen to silence and learn from it. It has a quality and a dimension all its own. - Chaim Potok

Within us is the soul of the whole, the wise silence, the universal beauty, the eternal One. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

If religion is to be treated with intellectual respect, then it must stand the test of truth. - Ravi Zacharias

I think 99 times and find nothing. I stop thinking, swim in silence, and the truth comes to me. - Albert Einstein

I am the indoctrinated child of two lapsed Irish Catholics. Which is to say: I am not religious. - Meghan O'Rourke

No matter how carefully you stored the lights last year, they will be snarled again this Christmas. - Robert Kirby

The whole religious complexion of the modern world is due to the absence from Jerusalem of a lunatic asylum. - Havelock Ellis

I choose to love you in silence because in silence I find no rejection, and in silence no one owns you but me. - Unknown

Everything has its wonders, even darkness and silence, and I learn whatever state I am in, therein to be content. - Helen Keller

Some movie stars wear their sunglasses even in Church. They're afraid God might recognize them and ask for autographs. - Fred Allen

Mathematicians are like Frenchmen: whatever you say to them they translate into their own language and forthwith it is something entirely different. - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

see also   Christmas  &  Religious  Sections
Celebate or Celebrate?
Friar Thumper
Gambling Chips
Greek Monk
Monk On A Rope
Monk’s Fish And Chip Stand
Monk’s Story
Silent Monks Singing Hallelujah
Tiny Monks
Voices In My Head


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Leading a Remote Life
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