Dreams of eternal life

Death of St Benedict
Death of St Benedict (Montecasino)

“To desire eternal life
with all spiritual ardent yearning,
to daily keep death before one’s eyes.”
(Rule of Benedict 4.46-47)

According to the General Social Survey, more than 80% of Americans believe in life after death. Some people think it’s a shadowy existence, others a time of intense activity. Conversationally, people mention feeling close to loved ones who died, or say they will “spend their eternity” for some cause.

No one is busy making plans for eternal life or talks of it with ardent yearning. Perhaps we are comfortable and well-fed; earthly life no longer seems a “vale of tears.” Perhaps we can no longer see or imagine the depth of beauty and wonder God places in each human spirit.


Tooling Through Lent is a series of brief reflections on Chapter 4 of the Rule of Benedict, The Tools for Good Works.

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