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Cloister, Mont St Michel, France

Cloister, Mont St Michel, France

When I lived in England I made my annual retreat with the small community of Benedictines at Mont St Michel.

The architecture is a Gothic marvel of economy and engineering brilliance. The lower levels with thick walls support common rooms with thinner walls and pillars and the whole living and working area is surmounted by this light filigree of a Gothic cloister.

The effect is just what a monastic cloister should be: the spiritual center of the monastery: enclosed from the world, structured with the discipline of obedience and rooted with stability, but with the heart being a beautiful garden open to the heavens.

The whole thing preaches the three vows of obedience, stability and conversion of life in timeless stone. The solid foundations of stability, the structured life through obedience which enable the beautiful conversion of life which is the cloister garden.

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