8 Feb. 9 June. 9 Oct.
The eleventh degree of humility is, that when a monk speaketh, he do so gently and without laughter, humbly, gravely, with few and reasonable words, and that he be not noisy in his speech, as it is written: “A wise man is known by the fewness of his words.”
One might, following Saint Bernard’s Twelve Degrees of Pride, sketch a portrait of the man infected with pride by considering the opposite of what Saint Benedict describes in this Eleventh Degree of Humility. The prideful monk speaks loudly and punctuate his discourses with great guffaws and outbursts. He is always seeking to dominate the conversation, to put himself at the centre of the stage. Often he will speak in a continuous flow of words, never stopping to allow another to speak, or even imagining that another may have something to say. If another succeeds in getting a word in, he treats it dismissively, and resumes his own discourse as if nothing has been said. Saint Bernard describes such a man:
The monk who is unable to discharge his superabundant