Breaking The Silence


Brother John entered the ‘Monastery of Silence’ and the Abbott said, “Brother, this is a silent monastery, you are welcome here as long as you like, but you may not speak until I direct you to do so.”

Brother John lived in the monastery for a full year before the Abbott said to him: “Brother John, you have been here a year now, you may speak two words.”

Brother John said, “Hard Bed.”

“I’m sorry to hear that,” the Abbot said. “We will get you a better bed.”

The next year, Brother John was called by the Abbott. “You may say another two words Brother John.”

“Cold Food.” said Brother John, and the Abbott assured him that the food would be better in the future.

On his third anniversary at the monastery, the Abbott again called Brother John into his office. “Two words you may say today.”

“I Quit.” said Brother John.

“It is probably best.” said the Abbott. “All you have done since you got here was complain.”