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Asceticism   Listen
noun
Asceticism  n.  The condition, practice, or mode of life, of ascetics.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Asceticism" Quotes from Famous Books



... wrote hymns, I composed sermons. If I found my attention moving from heavenly matters, I grew angry with myself, and I renovated my flagging attention with inward ejaculation. I had all the madness of the anchorite upon me in the midst of youthful society, yet without his asceticism, and ...
— Rattlin the Reefer • Edward Howard

... sound reasoning prescribes a training with the given purpose of bringing the instincts of the individual into harmony with the interests of the whole social organism. Theology trying to lay down an absolute law sometimes encourages the extremes of asceticism, sometimes it inclines to antinomianism; and sometimes sanctions the condonation of sin in consideration of ...
— Prose Masterpieces from Modern Essayists • James Anthony Froude, Edward A. Freeman, William Ewart Gladstone, John Henry Newman and Leslie Steph

... self-adulation; but he offset every such allurement by constantly withdrawing from trifles, excitements, and seductions, and spending long hours in the unbroken solitude of thought and the awful neighborhood of God. If both these extremes brilliant public triumphs, and severe seclusion and asceticism had their special dangers, Madame Swetchine was his resistless guardian against them both. No one who has not read their correspondence, reaching richly through a whole generation, can easily imagine ...
— The Friendships of Women • William Rounseville Alger

... monasticism of the Benedictines, was long preserved in a remote corner of Christendom. Patrick, the most famous of its scholars, transmitted its type of monasticism to the Celtic Church which he founded in Ireland, and the vast numbers, the asceticism, the loose organization of such abbeys as those of Bangor or Armagh preserved to the twelfth century the essential characteristics of Lerins. Nor is this all its historical importance. What Iona is to the ecclesiastical history of Northern England, what Fulda and Monte Cassino ...
— Stray Studies from England and Italy • John Richard Green

... broken his vows, and come forth into the world. The cell and the cloister were left behind, were things to be forgotten, with the grating of the confessional and the dim routine of service and of asceticism. He had been borne on by the wave of a brilliant, a violent hour, away from them. Let the angelus bell ring; he no longer heard it. Let the drone of prayers and praises rise in a monotonous music by day and by night; he no longer had the will to heed them. ...
— Flames • Robert Smythe Hichens

... enchanted land of the fable: princes immortal, princesses eternally young and fair. The St Agnes and Sir Galahad, companion pieces, contain the romance, as St Simeon Stylites shows the repulsive side of asceticism; for the saint and the knight are young, beautiful, and eager as St Theresa in her childhood. It has been said, I do not know on what authority, that the poet had no recollection of composing Sir Galahad, any more than Scott remembered composing ...
— Alfred Tennyson • Andrew Lang

... honors destructive to the human race, which, had they assumed the proud name of philosophy, would have been blazoned in his brightest words, because they own religion as their principle—sink into narrow asceticism. The glories of Christianity, in short, touch on no chord in the heart of the writer; his imagination remains unkindled; his words, though they maintain their stately and measured march, have become cool, argumentative, and inanimate. Who would obscure one hue of ...
— The History of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Volume 1 • Edward Gibbon

... continued, "from the corrosion of time nor the asceticism of a devotee, who vainly thought she was serving God by voluntarily withdrawing from a world into which he himself had sent her, and by foregoing duties which he had expressly ordained she should fulfil. Don't start at the sight of the cross; it is the ...
— Nature and Human Nature • Thomas Chandler Haliburton

... not lacking in passion; had they been they could not have moved the world; but their passion was transmuted to the service of Humanity itself, for nothing else was great or wide enough for such a love. Does anyone suppose that it was a mere instinct of asceticism that drove St. Francis to make out of snow, cold images of wife and child? Was it not rather the sudden resurgent desire of the greatest of the saints for some more humanly warm affection, something more individual, something that nestles more closely ...
— Sex And Common-Sense • A. Maude Royden

... simple, plain manner, without needless luxury on the one hand or undue asceticism on the other. Preach fearlessly to the hypocrites in the church, no matter what their social importance or wealth. Show in some practical form His sympathy and love for the common people as well as for the well-to-do, educated, refined ...
— In His Steps • Charles M. Sheldon

... forerunner of a whole series of articles in Russian literature on women, wherein the latter are depicted in the most absurd manner, the most gloomy colors—articles known as "About Evil Women"—and founded on an admiration for Byzantine asceticism. In his Household Regulations Sylvester thus defines the ...
— A Survey of Russian Literature, with Selections • Isabel Florence Hapgood

... "We all go wrong," said Hawthorne, "by a too strenuous resolution to go right." Lady Byron was to him an intolerably irreproachable person, just as Stevenson felt a little of the same towards Thoreau; notwithstanding that he was the "sunnily-ascetic," the asceticism and its corollary, as he puts it: the passion for individual self-improvement was alien in a way to Stevenson. This is the position of the casuistic mystic moralist and not of the man who sees ...
— Robert Louis Stevenson - a Record, an Estimate, and a Memorial • Alexander H. Japp

... short, this master of visible things, this so ardent lover, will be a lover of the invisible, with—Yes! there it is constantly, in the Platonic dialogues, not to be explained away—with a certain asceticism, amid all the varied opulence, of sense, of speech and fancy, natural ...
— Plato and Platonism • Walter Horatio Pater

... to remain in life when they might have the blessing of death. Selfishness, fear of death, love of riches, and love of luxury, these were all unintelligible to the Kosekin, as much as to us would be self-abnegation, contempt of death, voluntary poverty, and asceticism. But as with us self-denying rulers may make others rich and be popular for this, so here among the Kosekin a selfish ruler might be popular by making others poor. Hence the words of Almah, as they were made known, gave rise to the wildest excitement and ...
— A Strange Manuscript Found in a Copper Cylinder • James De Mille

... a scout of civilization. In his day he led the vanguard. He found the prosperous part of the world given over to greed and gluttony. The so-called religious element was in partnership with fraud, superstition, ignorance, incompetence, and an asceticism like that of Simeon ...
— Little Journeys To The Homes Of Great Teachers • Elbert Hubbard

... an element of absurdity in the thought that the aim and purpose of human life is for each soul to hunt for the sins and imperfections in others. The enjoinment of self-criticism and self-culture seems a simpler and less circumstantial rule of life. Asceticism, abnegation, prayer, remoteness from the passions that rend the worldly, bring peace and content. But they limit experience and give a false simplicity to the problems of life. Early Christian monasticism held that as this ...
— Mountain Meditations - and some subjects of the day and the war • L. Lind-af-Hageby

... beautiful and useful when it remains in harmony with all our other instincts, and helps along in the common battle for Christ, who has given them to us. But this instinct can be perverted and run wild into asceticism and a passion for self-mortification, as hunger into gluttony and ...
— The Bride of Dreams • Frederik van Eeden

... of asceticism in the young men. Believe me, it is necessary to manhood that men when they are young should drink a little, gamble a little, and sow a few wild oats—as necessary as that a nation should found itself by the law of the strongest. How else can we look for the moderation to follow ...
— What's Mine's Mine • George MacDonald

... that recluse abode of the inhabitants of the forest of Naimisha. Having been entertained with due respect by those holy men, he saluted those Munis (sages) with joined palms, even all of them, and inquired about the progress of their asceticism. Then all the ascetics being again seated, the son of Lomaharshana humbly occupied the seat that was assigned to him. Seeing that he was comfortably seated, and recovered from fatigue, one of the Rishis beginning the conversation, asked him, 'Whence comest thou, O lotus-eyed Sauti, ...
— The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 1 • Kisari Mohan Ganguli

... A.H. 105-125 (724-743), a wise and discreet ruler with an inclination to avarice and asceticism. According to some, the Ommiades produced only three statesmen, Mu'awayah, Abd al-Malik and Hisham; and the reign of the latter was the end of sage government ...
— The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night, Volume 7 • Richard F. Burton

... Bible does him as direct a service in rebuke and guidance as if every sentence in it had been written for himself. It is interesting to note that the quotations from it are from a version that preceded our own. His rules of self-discipline and spiritual culture, while wholly free from unwholesome asceticism, nevertheless required the curbing of all desires, and the utter subjection of every natural prompting to a crucial test, before its innocent or edifying character ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 13, No. 75, January, 1864 • Various

... a happy view of life amongst the upper classes as is indicated by their philosophy, and with that merry disposition amongst the peasants which shows itself in their love of song, it is not surprising to find that asceticism is practically unknown in ancient Egypt before the time of Christ. At first sight, in reflecting on the mysteries and religious ceremonies of the nation, we are apt to endow the priests and other participators with a degree of austerity wholly unjustified by ...
— The Treasury of Ancient Egypt - Miscellaneous Chapters on Ancient Egyptian History and Archaeology • Arthur E. P. B. Weigall

... his sister and her children. Signora Lucretia responded to the welcome of my parents with expressions of fervent gratitude, calling them the saviors of her family. She was a short, slender woman, in whose dark eyes, long, finely-cut features, and pale, thin face one could discern the spirit of asceticism and the traces of past afflictions. Of the children she had buried, all had reached their tenth year in apparent health and remarkable for their physical and moral beauty, but from that age they had rapidly trodden the pathway to the tomb. None of her children had ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, Vol. 15, - No. 86, February, 1875 • Various

... so great as this, from Giotto, Perugino, and Cima, to Tintoret, Titian, and Veronese, as the religious ideals, will, indeed, amaze all who read it. Yet this is but the logical consequence of his progression hitherto. If he commenced with a belief that asceticism was religion, he would recognize Perugino and Giotto as the true religious artists; but if, as seems to be the case, he has learned at last that religion is a thing of daily life, mingling in all that we do, caring for body as ...
— Atlantic Monthly Volume 6, No. 34, August, 1860 • Various

... you make wholesale condemnation of progress, and would lead us back to the good old times—to asceticism perhaps." ...
— The Simple Life • Charles Wagner

... the Church a compromise, which it would have been difficult to refuse, and in which she perceived art first no peril to her dogmas. When the conflict of the first few centuries of Christianity had ended in her triumph, she began to mediate between asceticism and the world. Intent on absorbing all existent elements of life and power, she conformed her system to the Roman type, established her service in basilicas and Pagan temples, adopted portions of the antique ritual, ...
— Renaissance in Italy Vol. 3 - The Fine Arts • John Addington Symonds

... music is as weird and passionate as the libretto, and moreover perfectly in keeping with its plot. It would be difficult to do justice to it, for in order to appreciate its complicated grandeur, one must have heard it performed. It combines sublimity with asceticism and wickedness, ...
— The Standard Operaglass - Detailed Plots of One Hundred and Fifty-one Celebrated Operas • Charles Annesley

... some people seem to see yawning between East and West. It is deplorable that the world should think that there is such a complete difference between East and West. It is usually said that self-denial, asceticism, sacrifice, negation are opposed to self-affirmation, individualism, self-realisation; but I do not believe in such a gap. I wish to destroy the idea of a gap. It is an idea which was obtained analytically. The meeting of East and West will not be upon a bridge ...
— The Foundations of Japan • J.W. Robertson Scott

... waged eternal war against each other with wretched man as the prize of victory; and the priest, self-constituted interpreter of the will of the gods, stood in front of the only refuge from harm and demanded as the price of entrance that ignorance, that asceticism, that self-abnegation which could but end in the complete subjugation of man to superstition. He was taught that Heaven, the refuge, was the very antithesis of Earth, which was the source of sin. To gain for himself a seat in ...
— Mother Earth, Vol. 1 No. 1, March 1906 • Various

... that grace of love which is more terrible than the thunderbolt that fell on the road to Damascus. A woman oftenest yields to the passion of love only when age or solitude does not frighten her. Passion is an arid and burning desert. Passion is profane asceticism, as harsh as religious asceticism. Great woman lovers are as rare as great penitent women. Those who know life well know that women do not easily bind themselves in the chains of real love. They know that nothing is less common than ...
— Serge Panine • Georges Ohnet

... of purpose (in sacrifices), the Vital principles,—these illustrious and vow-observing beings in their personified forms, and many others too numerous to mention, attend all upon Brahma in that mansion. Wealth and Religion and Desire, and Joy, and Aversion, and Asceticism and Tranquillity—all wait together upon the Supreme Deity in that palace. The twenty tribes of the Gandharvas and Apsaras, as also their seven other tribes, and all the Lokapalas (chief protectors of several regions), and Sukra, and Vrihaspati, and Vudha, and Angaraka (Mangala), Sani, Rahu, ...
— The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Part 2 • Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa

... chaff each other. Cyril preaches to Everard, when Henry scolds him for fasting, and his laxity of faith and practice. They pass Belminster, when Cyril betrays unconscious ambition at Everard's jesting prophecy that he would preach as bishop in the cathedral. Asceticism is defended by Cyril and condemned by Everard. Cyril speaks of the discipline of sorrow, and presses a spiked cross under his clothes into his side. Everard exalts the discipline of joy. The friends have been privately educated together, and were ...
— The World's Greatest Books, Volume V. • Arthur Mee and J.A. Hammerton, Eds.

... life. In my relation to the world are given my duties. The renunciation of outward duty makes the inward life barren. The principle which is to transform the world wears an aspect very different from that of stoicism, of asceticism or even of the individualism which has sought soul-salvation. In the midst of unworthiness and helplessness there springs up the consciousness of reconciliation. Man, with all his imperfections, becomes aware that he is the object of the loving purpose of God. Still ...
— Edward Caldwell Moore - Outline of the History of Christian Thought Since Kant • Edward Moore

... pleasure and to fly from joy appears to me the worst insult that one can offer to nature. I am assured that during their lives certain of the elect of thy god abstained from food and avoided women through love of asceticism, and voluntarily exposed themselves to useless sufferings. I should be afraid of meeting those, criminals whose frenzy horrifies me. A poet must not be asked to attach himself too strictly to any scientific or moral doctrine. Moreover, I am a Roman, and the ...
— Penguin Island • Anatole France

... atonement, could be transformed into the purely spiritual festival which we celebrate to-day' (Montefiore, op. cit., p. 160). But the day is none the less associated with a strict rite, the fast. It is one of the few ascetic ceremonies in the Jewish Calendar as known to most Jews. There is a strain of asceticism in some forms of Judaism, and on this a few words will be said later. But, on the whole, there is in modern Judaism a tendency to underrate somewhat the value of asceticism in religion. Hence the fast has a distinct importance ...
— Judaism • Israel Abrahams

... turning-point of his history. He resolves to quit his self-inflicted torments as of no avail. He meets a shepherd's daughter, who offers him food out of compassion for his emaciated and miserable condition. The rich rice milk, sweet and perfumed, restores his strength. He renounces asceticism, and wanders to a spot more congenial to his ...
— Beacon Lights of History, Volume I • John Lord

... easier than to give Christian asceticism a Socialist tinge. Has not Christianity declaimed against private property, against marriage, against the State? Has it not preached in the place of these, charity and poverty, celibacy and mortification of the flesh, monastic life and Mother Church? Christian Socialism is but ...
— The Communist Manifesto • Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels

... used lightly but I can find no other. Like most Catholics I have been wont to believe that to be a mystic a man must first be an ascetic and Gilbert was not an ascetic in the ordinary sense. But is there not for the thinker an asceticism of the mind, very searching, very purifying? In his youth he had told Bentley that creative writing was the hardest of hard labour. That sense of the pressure of thought that made Newman call creative writing "getting rid of pain by pain"; the profound depression ...
— Gilbert Keith Chesterton • Maisie Ward

... such as it is fabled to send upon those who sleep in it. At such times he seems more like one who has come from a planet farther away from the sun than our earth, than like one of us terrestrial creatures. His home is truly in the heavens, and he practises an asceticism in the cause of science almost comparable to that of Saint Simeon Stylites. Yet they tell me he might live in luxury if he spent on himself what he spends on science. His knowledge is of that strange, remote ...
— The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. (The Physician and Poet not the Jurist)

... window—from the Old Man of the Mountains—the Head of all the Creed—explaining the Manifestation in the most beautiful language and soaking up all the credit of it for himself. The Englishman, said the letter, was not there at all. He was a backslider without Power or Asceticism, who couldn't even raise a table by force of volition, much less project an army of kittens through space. The entire arrangement, said the letter, was strictly orthodox, worked and sanctioned by the highest Authorities within the pale of the Creed. There was great joy at this, for some of the ...
— Indian Tales • Rudyard Kipling

... scrupulous veracity; but, on the contrary, such faults as arise from austerity, too harsh perhaps, and gloomy—indulgent neither to others nor herself. And, at the time of relating this incident, when already very old, she had become religious to asceticism. According to my present belief, she had completed her ninth year, when playing by the side of a solitary brook, she fell into one of its deepest pools. Eventually, but after what lapse of time nobody ever knew, she was saved from death by a farmer, ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 57, No. 356, June, 1845 • Various

... weaknesses, his suspicions and dreads, his temper and self-abasement. The nobility that Martin had in him was true nobility, his very weaknesses came from his sharp consciousness of what purity and self-sacrifice and asceticism really were, and that they were indeed the only things for man to live by. During those weeks he saw so truly the sweetness and fidelity and simplicity of Maggie that his conscience was killed, his scruples were numbed. He did not want during ...
— The Captives • Hugh Walpole

... free themselves from human passion are most rare. And who knows if, even among those few privileged ones, some are not driven by the demon of vanity to increase the asceticism of their lives, thinking of the glory of being on an altar! The priest who succeeds in subduing his flesh falls into avarice, which is the ecclesiastical vice par excellence. I have never hoarded from vice; I have saved for my own, ...
— The Shadow of the Cathedral • Vicente Blasco Ibanez

... relieve the unhappiness of the world, has been always to suggest ways in which this vulnerability may be lessened; and thus their object has been to disengage as far as possible the hopes and affections of men from things which must always be fleeting. That is the principle which lies behind all asceticism, that, if one can be indifferent to wealth and comfort and popularity, one has a better chance of serenity. The essence of that teaching is not that pleasant things are not desirable, but that one is more miserable if ...
— Where No Fear Was - A Book About Fear • Arthur Christopher Benson

... release from the common ways of men can be found only through art," Stroganoff would apostrophize. "The final and only true solution of life is to be found in the life of the saint. True morality passes through virtue, which is rooted in sympathy into asceticism. Renunciation only offers a complete release from the evils and terrors ...
— Mystic Isles of the South Seas. • Frederick O'Brien

... once, among the children of Israel, a man of the devout, for piety acclaimed and for continence and asceticism enfamed, whose prayers were ever granted and who by supplication obtained whatso he wanted; and he was a wanderer in the mountains and was used to pass the night in worship. Now Almighty Allah had subjected to him a cloud ...
— The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night, Volume 5 • Richard F. Burton

... civilization. The same spirit, in rejecting the authority and teachings of the Church in matters of purely secular knowledge, led to the questionings of the precursors of modern science and the discoveries of the early navigators. But in nothing did the reaction against medival scholasticism and asceticism display itself more strikingly than in the joyful enthusiasm which marked the pursuit of classic studies. The long-neglected treasures of classic literature were reopened, almost rediscovered, in the fourteenth century by the immortal trio—Dante, Petrarch, ...
— A Text-Book of the History of Architecture - Seventh Edition, revised • Alfred D. F. Hamlin

... the old familiar stories of visions and miracles; of strange adventures befalling the chalices and holy wafers;[425] of angels with wax candles; innocent phantoms which flitted round brains and minds fevered by asceticism. There are accounts of certain fratres reprobi et eorum terribilis punitio—frail brethren and the frightful catastrophes which ensued to them.[426] Brother Thomas, who told stories out of doors, apud saeculares, was attacked one night by the devil; and the fiend would ...
— History of England from the Fall of Wolsey to the Death of Elizabeth. Vol. II. • James Anthony Froude

... him and in Lucifer, who personifies the creative fire, is aroused against the narrow asceticism of orthodox Christianity, embodied in the wan and feeble Titurel. Satan decides to imitate the Lord of Christianity, by begetting upon a virgin, Candida, a son who is to save the world from the sterility of asceticism. Candida is briefly introduced, acknowledging the power ...
— The German Classics of The Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, Vol. VII. • Various

... eloquence, the youth throws off his disguise, appearing as the god Shiva himself, and declares his love for her. Parvati immediately discontinues her religious asceticism; for ...
— Translations of Shakuntala and Other Works • Kaalidaasa

... noble countenance with black eyes, black hair streaked with threads of white, a delicate, compressed mouth, a prominent and angular chin. His head, full of graceful majesty, was covered with the episcopal mitre, a headdress which gave it, in addition to the character of sovereignty, that of asceticism and evangelic meditation. ...
— Ten Years Later - Chapters 1-104 • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... rejected by Schopenhauer on the ground that the destruction of the individual cannot prevent the One Will from manifesting itself in other individuals. Curiously enough he appears to approve of suicide by starvation, as indicating a renunciation of the will to live. But his general recommendation is asceticism, renunciation of the striving for pleasure, the voluntary acceptance of pain. Through this the Will is to be taught to apprehend its own nature, and, thus, to deny itself. How a general asceticism on our part will rob the one universal Will, revealed in the ...
— A Handbook of Ethical Theory • George Stuart Fullerton

... and soon by a great part of the southern nobility, the heretics gained ground in the south, and in 1119 the council of Toulouse in vain ordered the secular powers to assist the ecclesiastical authority in quelling the heresy. The people were attached to the bons hommes, whose asceticism imposed upon the masses, and the anti-sacerdotal preaching of Peter of Bruys and Henry of Lausanne in Perigord. Languedoc and Provence, only facilitated the progress of Catharism in those regions. In 1147 Pope Eugenius III. sent the legate Alberic ...
— Project Gutenberg Encyclopedia

... cold-blooded man, although his obstinacy seemed sometimes to point to a fiery fanaticism. But he was not a fanatic any more than a mule is one when he plants his feet four-square and refuses to go forward. No compliments nor threats could move him; he would have lived, had he had a spark of asceticism, a hermit far from the haunts of men, but even that withdrawal would have implied devotion. He was devoted to no one, to no cause, to no religion, to no ambition. He spent his days in maintaining things as they were, not because ...
— The Cathedral • Hugh Walpole

... a principle of organization, 87. Moderation and thrift, 87. Honesty, veracity, and tact of the prudential form, 88. The inherent value of the prudential economy. Individual and social health, 88. Temperance and reason, 90. Prudential formalism, or asceticism, 92. Asceticism illustrated by the Cynics, 92. Prudential materialism or sordidness, ...
— The Moral Economy • Ralph Barton Perry

... of rhetoric, an Assyrian by birth, who was converted to Christianity by Justin Martyr, but after his death fell into heresy, leaning towards the Valentinian Gnosticism, and combining with this an extreme asceticism. ...
— The Gospels in the Second Century - An Examination of the Critical Part of a Work - Entitled 'Supernatural Religion' • William Sanday

... atmospheric enchantments, Carlo Dolce the effeminate grace, Titian the voluptuous energy, Guido the placid self-possession, and Raphael and Correggio the religious sentiment of Italy; Watteau put on canvas the fete champetre; the peasant-life of Spain is pictured by Murillo, her asceticism by the old religious limners; what English rustics were before steam and railroads Gainsborough and Moreland reveal, Wilkie has permanently symbolized Scotch shrewdness and domesticity, and Lawrence framed ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 1, No. 4, February, 1858 • Various

... of the Egyptian deserts who were clad in palm-leaves, and lived on the roots of the earth. But do not think that by praising these I am disparaging the others; all I mean to say is that the penances of those of the present day do not come up to the asceticism and austerity of former times; but it does not follow from this that they are not all worthy; at least I think them so; and at the worst the hypocrite who pretends to be good does less harm than ...
— Don Quixote • Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

... of his court. His queen, the gay, haughty, and pleasure-seeking Eleanor of Guienne, never admired him in this trim, and continually reproached him with imitating, not only the head-dress, but the asceticism of the monks. From this cause a coldness arose between them. The lady proving at last unfaithful to her shaven and indifferent lord, they were divorced, and the kings of France lost the rich provinces of Guienne and Poitou, which were her dowry. She soon after bestowed her hand and ...
— Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds • Charles Mackay

... criticism. In the sphere of religion, the hereditary priesthood of India stands over against the British ideal of a clergy trained for their duties and proved in character. The Hindu conception of a religious life as a life of sacrificial offerings and penances, or of ecstasies, or of asceticism, or of sacred study, stands over against the British ideal of religion in daily life and in practical philanthropies. To the Hindu, the religious mood is that of ecstatic whole-hearted devotion; the Briton reverences as the religious mood a quiet staying ...
— New Ideas in India During the Nineteenth Century - A Study of Social, Political, and Religious Developments • John Morrison

... twin-brother, Sir Bartholomew Berghersh, was one of the most famous of those stern warriors who had planted the Cross of St. George before the gates of Paris. With lips compressed and clouded brow, he strode up and down the oaken floor, the very genius and impersonation of asceticism, while the great bell still thundered and clanged above his head. At last the uproar died away in three last, measured throbs, and ere their echo had ceased the Abbot struck a small gong which summoned a ...
— The White Company • Arthur Conan Doyle

... appreciate generous and kindly sympathy, and could be won by it. But this cool and inflexible elaboration of character, where only the end is considered, and all our timid shrinking and human weakness are ignored,—this austere asceticism which despises the present world and life,—is to me unnatural and monstrous. I confess I never read the Bible very much, and have not listened when it was read. I have half forgotten the story of Lazarus. You left off where Lazarus was ...
— From Jest to Earnest • E. P. Roe

... other, the traveller is more impressed by the subtle analogies they suggest than by the differences of their architectural forms. On week-days, when the church is empty, they seem to prefigure the two ideals of the religion which they serve—the stern, self-conquering asceticism of a Saint Dominic, and the exquisite, radiant visions which Saint Cecelia saw when heavenly music was vouchsafed her. Or, if one has time to fancy further, the nave is the epic of its great religion; the choir, a song which is the expression ...
— Cathedrals and Cloisters of the South of France, Volume 1 • Elise Whitlock Rose

... entailing "high thinking and low living" at all times. A restricted diet, the exact nature of which is in dispute, was observed by all members, and long periods of silence, as conducive to deep thinking, were imposed on novices. Women were admitted to the Order, and PYTHAGORAS' asceticism did not prohibit romance, for we read that one of his fair pupils won her way to his heart, and, declaring her affection for him, found it reciprocated and ...
— Bygone Beliefs • H. Stanley Redgrove

... Olympian. Personally he was not in the least like his art, a crime that sentimental persons seldom forgive. A Burgundian—born at Lyons, December 14, 1824—he possessed all the characteristics of his race. Asceticism was the last quality to seek in him. A good dinner with old vintage, plenty of comrades, above all the society of his beloved Princess Cantacuzene, whose love of her husband was the one romance in his career; these, and twelve hours' toil a day in his atelier made up the long life of this distinguished ...
— Ivory Apes and Peacocks • James Huneker

... against the liberal doctrines of the great Antonine jurisconsults." This he attributes to the prevalent state of religious feeling that went to "fatal excesses" under the influence of its "passion for asceticism." ...
— The Truth About Woman • C. Gasquoine Hartley

... no compensating superiority. But Christianity tended somewhat from the very first to narrow this remarkable liberty. Led at first by justifiable disrelish for the loose practices of the decaying heathen world, but afterwards hurried on by a passion of asceticism, the professors of the new faith looked with disfavour on a marital tie which was in fact the laxest the Western world has seen. The latest Roman law, so far as it is touched by the constitutions of the Christian Emperors, bears some marks of a reaction against the ...
— Ancient Law - Its Connection to the History of Early Society • Sir Henry James Sumner Maine

... with the old problem. His life was sworn to the service of the people. He had crowded his days with thoughts and deeds and plans for them. Almost every personal luxury and pleasure had been abnegated. He had found a sort of fierce delight in the asceticism of his daily life, in the unflinching firmness with which he had barred the gates which might lead him into smoother and happier ways. To-night he was beset with a sudden fear. He rose and looked at himself ...
— A Lost Leader • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... that produced the wild asceticism prevalent in the Christian Church during the Middle Age and previously, the fearful macerations, scourgings, crucifixions of the flesh. It should be understood that, though some of the phraseology of the Scriptures is tinged by the influence ...
— The Destiny of the Soul - A Critical History of the Doctrine of a Future Life • William Rounseville Alger

... d'Oreilles. Many of them are devoted Catholics, but liable at times to lapse into intoxication. The Jesuits have a thriving mission among them, with a neat church, whose clear ringing bell sounds strangely enough in the mountain recesses. The strict asceticism of the fathers, their careful nursing of the sick and wounded, and their cordial co-operation in all objects of philanthropy, have enabled them to wield an immense influence among the Indians. The white miners also, who have often lain sick or frost-bitten in their hospitals, except these zealous ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 18, No. 106, August, 1866 • Various

... of the limbs is an essential preliminary to success in this art; and such a feeling can only arise among a people who set much store on feats of bodily strength and agility. This has never been the character of the Hindus, whose religion encourages asceticism and mortification of the body, and points to mental self-absorption and detachment from worldly cares and exercises as the highest type ...
— The Tribes and Castes of the Central Provinces of India - Volume IV of IV - Kumhar-Yemkala • R.V. Russell

... abbe, "that I do not like monks, that I distrust their humility and abhor their lives of inaction. But this man spoke in so sad and kindly a manner; he was so filled with a sense of his duty; he seemed so ill, so emaciated by asceticism, so truly penitent, that he won my heart. In his looks and in his talk were bright flashes which betrayed a powerful intellect, indefatigable energy, and indomitable perseverance. We spent two whole hours together, and I was so moved by what he said that on leaving him ...
— Mauprat • George Sand

... glamour of tradition to render them immortal—they are the saints now whose lot was humblest upon earth. The Crusader has clashed through the ages with the noise of sword and armour, attracting the lover of romance, though he performed less doughty deeds than the monk of stern asceticism, whose rule forbade him to break peace. He enjoys glory still as he enjoyed the hour of victories, and the battle that might bring death but could not result in shame. The Brethren of St Dominic and St Francis shrank in life, at least, from the reverence paid to the sacrifice ...
— Heroes of Modern Europe • Alice Birkhead

... accept his picture of the poet's as "a soulless life ... wherein the foulest things may loll at ease beside the loveliest." It seems to me at least as obligatory on a poet as on other men to keep his garden weeded and his conscience active. Indeed, I believe some asceticism of soul to be a condition of all really great poetry. Also Mr. Davidson appears to be confusing charity with an approbation of things in the strict sense damnable when he makes the Mother of Christ abet a Nun whose wanderings have no nobler excuse than a carnal desire—savoir enfin ce que ...
— Adventures in Criticism • Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... had placed me next to James, so I listened to more asceticism. "He oughtn't to do things like this! People will say he likes to eat rich food and to drink. It's bad for the movement for ...
— They Call Me Carpenter • Upton Sinclair

... assuming immediately the head of his own table, he took the responsibility of the party's merriment, and made the good humor flow like the wine. I know not how it was, but ere the meal was over I found myself joining in one of his choruses; Frau Kranich forgot her asceticism and exhumed all her youthful air of gayety; James Athanasius Grandstone promised the host to set his wines running in every State of America. But the prettiest moment was when the two brides rose and touched glasses, mutually and to the health of the company, apropos ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science Vol. XV., No. 85. January, 1875. • Various

... fruit among the leaves. In Italy seeing is sensual: the eyes enjoy color, as the palate and the tongue delight in a juicy, scented fruit. Christophe flung himself at this new repast with eager childlike greed: he made up for the asceticism of the gray visions to which till then he had been condemned. His abounding nature, stifled by Fate, suddenly became conscious of powers of enjoyment which he had never used: they pounced on the prey presented to them; ...
— Jean-Christophe Journey's End • Romain Rolland

... known as Santri Birahis are said to adore devas and the forces of nature.[451] Less obvious, but more important as more deeply affecting the national character, is the tendency towards mysticism and asceticism. What is known as ngelmoe[452] plays a considerable part in the religious life of the modern Javanese. The word is simply the Arabic 'ilm (or knowledge) used in the sense of secret science. It sometimes signifies mere magic but the higher forms of it, such ...
— Hinduism and Buddhism, An Historical Sketch, Vol. 3 (of 3) • Charles Eliot

... compliment to his supposed monastic vocations affected him almost as uncomfortably as the "Star's" extravagant eulogium. He was obliged to recall certain foolish experiences of his own to enable him to rise superior to this presumption of his asceticism. ...
— Cressy • Bret Harte

... the sacerdotal order: the monk Hildebrand, afterwards Pope Gregory the Seventh." Born the son of a poor carpenter in the Tuscan village of Soana, this extraordinary man rose to eminence as a monk of Cluny, where he became famous for his extreme asceticism of life in an age of undisguised clerical corruption and luxury, when simony, lay investiture and priestly marriages were the rule rather than the exception on all sides, so that but few Churchmen were able to rise above their surrounding ...
— The Naples Riviera • Herbert M. Vaughan

... education, without any attention to the moral and intellectual, and he will go to pieces like our prize-fighters and athletes. But the Christians went to the other extreme. They practiced the most absurd system of asceticism, depriving themselves of natural food and rest, and, of course, the results which followed on a grand scale were just what would follow in the individual. Let a person follow the course they did, denying himself necessary raiment and food, taking no exercise, ...
— Brave Men and Women - Their Struggles, Failures, And Triumphs • O.E. Fuller

... usually called social reform. It is not 'modern', and it is also dependent upon a mistaken argument in ethical theory. An unfortunate confusion made by what is called Eastern, Stoic, or Mediaeval asceticism led to the idea that because the mind is more important than the body, the body has no importance at all. But we need not deal with this theory in detail, especially as the general attitude of to-day is opposed to it. There ...
— The Unity of Civilization • Various

... It was Erasmus who revived the study of the Greek Testament, the charter of the scholar's reformation. He gave the Renaissance, in its origin purely Pagan, a Christian direction, and prevented the divorce of learning from religion. He also protested against the confusion of Christianity with asceticism, and against belief in the superior sanctity of monks. He turned his satire upon corruption in high places, and did not spare the Holy See. His residence in England, his friendship with More, his admiration for the ...
— The Life of Froude • Herbert Paul

... institution in which individuals devote themselves, apart from others, to the cultivation of spiritual contemplation and religious duties, and which has constituted a marked feature in Pre-Christian Jewish asceticism, and in Buddhism as well as in Christianity; in the Church it developed from the practice of living in solitude in the 2nd century, and received its distinctive note when the vow of obedience to a superior was added to the hermit's personal vows of poverty and chastity; the movement of St. ...
— The Nuttall Encyclopaedia - Being a Concise and Comprehensive Dictionary of General Knowledge • Edited by Rev. James Wood

... though singular, by no means formidable. He was a man slightly past the middle age, with a thin face, hollowed at the cheeks and temples as if by illness or asceticism, and a grayish beard that encircled his throat like a soiled worsted "comforter" below his clean-shaven chin and mouth. His manner was slow and methodical, and even when he shot the bolt of the door behind him, ...
— Openings in the Old Trail • Bret Harte

... their minimizing interpretations), it becomes the worst enemy of true philosophy. In Christianity the doctrines of original sin and of redemption are especially congenial to our philosopher, as well as mysticism and asceticism. He declares Mohammedanism the worst religion on account of its optimism and abstract theism, and Buddhism the best, because ...
— History Of Modern Philosophy - From Nicolas of Cusa to the Present Time • Richard Falckenberg

... again, the name of Buddha, 'ameta fo,' or something like that sound. I observed some with lumps on the forehead, evidently produced by knocking it against the ground. The utter want of respect of these people for their temples, coupled with this asceticism and apparent self-sacrifice in their religion, is a combination which I cannot at present understand. It has one bad effect, that in the plundering expeditions which we Christians dignify with the name of war in these countries, idols are ripped up in the hope of finding treasure in them, temple ...
— Letters and Journals of James, Eighth Earl of Elgin • James, Eighth Earl of Elgin

... after generation, our race, or all that part of our race which was most living and progressive, was baptized into a death; and endeavored, by suffering in the flesh, to cease from sin. Of this endeavor, the animating labors and afflictions of early Christianity, the touching asceticism of mediaeval Christianity, are the great historical manifestations. Literary monuments of it, each in its own way incomparable, remain in the Epistles of St. Paul, in St. Augustine's Confessions, and in the two original and simplest ...
— Selections from the Prose Works of Matthew Arnold • Matthew Arnold

... graphic picture of the senseless, corrupting luxury of the Samaritan magnates, on which the Tekoan shepherd pours his scorn, but which is simplicity itself, and almost asceticism, before what he would see if he came to London or New York. To him it seemed effeminate to loll on a divan at meals, and possibly it was a custom imported from abroad. It is noted that 'the older custom in Israel was to sit while eating.' The woodwork ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Ezekiel, Daniel, and the Minor Prophets. St Matthew Chapters I to VIII • Alexander Maclaren

... flying through a window—from the Old Man of the Mountains—the head of all the creed—explaining the manifestation in the most beautiful language and soaking up all the credit of it for himself. The Englishman, said the letter, was not there at all. He was a backslider without power or asceticism, who couldn't even raise a table by force of volition, much less project an army of kittens through space. The entire arrangement, said the letter, was strictly orthodox, worked and sanctioned by the highest authorities within the pale ...
— The Lock And Key Library - Classic Mystery And Detective Stories, Modern English • Various

... makes up for her summer's luxury by fasting, 'not in sackcloth and ashes, but in new silk and old sack;' and instead of standing three months chin-deep in ice, and christening great snowballs her 'friends and family,' as St. Francis of Assisi did of old, knows no severer asceticism than tepid shower-baths, and a parasol of ...
— Prose Idylls • Charles Kingsley

... particularly among the women, and contained ideas which are by no means ignoble but to our modern minds far more truly "religious" than anything to be found in the native Roman cults. To pass through purification, to practise asceticism, to feel that there was a life beyond the grave apportioned to your deserts, to go through an impressive form of worship held every day, and to have the emotions thus worked upon—all this supplied something to the moral nature which was lacking in the chill sacrifices ...
— Life in the Roman World of Nero and St. Paul • T. G. Tucker

... path—lost her in the dusk, and then deep in the woods at one side saw her flitting from tree to tree away from him. But Peter's blood was now warm with the chase—and it was the blood of Peter Nicholaevitch too. Forgotten were the studious hours of patience and toil. Here was a girl who challenged his asceticism—a beautiful young female animal who dared to mock at his self-restraint. She thought that she could get away. But he gained on her. She had stopped ...
— The Vagrant Duke • George Gibbs

... century a great reform movement, emanating from the monastery of Cluny, had transformed the Catholic world, but in this England had but little part. Starting as a monastic reformation, it had just succeeded in bringing the whole Church under monastic control. Henceforth the asceticism of the monk, his ideals in religion and worship, his type of thought and learning, were to be those of the official Church, from the papal throne to the country parsonage. It was for that age a true reformation. The combined influence ...
— The History of England From the Norman Conquest - to the Death of John (1066-1216) • George Burton Adams

... when one finds him so heartily approving of Walt Whitman and traveling to Brooklyn to look upon him and hear his voice. He recognized at once the tremendous significance of Whitman and the power of his poetry. He called him the greatest democrat which the world had yet seen. With all his asceticism and his idealism, he was not troubled at all with those things in Whitman that are a stumbling-block to so many persons. Evidently his long intercourse with Nature had prepared him for the primitive ...
— The Last Harvest • John Burroughs

... in this way was to bring men out from the pits which cynicism on the one side, and asceticism on the other, had dug so deep for them, back to the warm precincts of the cheerful day. The cynic and the ascetic had each looked at life through a microscope, exaggerating blemishes, distorting proportions, filling the eye with ugly and disgusting illusions.[40] Humanity, as ...
— Critical Miscellanies (Vol 2 of 3) - Essay 1: Vauvenargues • John Morley

... common with my father and Don Andreis, or with the religion professed by them and by the priests and the devout laity of Turin. I had not been able to detect the slightest trace of that which in the language of asceticism is called unction. I know not why, but that grave and downcast aspect, enlivened only by a few occasional flashes of ponderous clerical wit, the atmosphere depressing as the plumbeus auster of Horace, in which I had ...
— Library Of The World's Best Literature, Ancient And Modern, Vol 3 • Various

... arms, was its master. It has lived through all these centuries, all their revolutions and convulsions, the usurpation, tyranny, and scandals of the Papacy. The most doubtful point of it, considered as a permanent exemplar, is its tendency, not to asceticism, for Christ came "eating and drinking," but to an excessive preference for poverty and antipathy to wealth which would arrest human progress and kill civilization. We have, however, a Nicodemus and a Joseph of Arimathea, as well as a Dives and a Lazarus. Nothing points to a Simeon Stylites. ...
— No Refuge but in Truth • Goldwin Smith

... hermitage on the banks of the river Malini, and surrounded it with gardens and groves, where penitential rites were performed, and animals were reared for sacrificial purposes, or for the amusement of the inmates. There is nothing new in asceticism. The craving after self-righteousness, and the desire of acquiring merit by self-mortification, is an innate principle of the human heart, and ineradicable even by Christianity. Witness the monastic institutions of the Romish Church, of which Indian penance-groves were the type. The Superior of ...
— Sakoontala or The Lost Ring - An Indian Drama • Kalidasa

... dream only which raises men above the biological norm; and it is fidelity to the dream which differentiates the exceptional figure, the man of heroic stature, from the muddling, aimless mediocrities about him. What the dream is, matters not at all—it may be a dream of sainthood, kingship, love, art, asceticism or sensual pleasure—so long as it is fully expressed with all the resources of self. It is this sort of completion which Mr. Cabell has elected to depict in all his work: the complete sensualist in Demetrios, the ...
— Chivalry • James Branch Cabell

... symbols that become finally but the basis of superstition, in order that it may concentrate attention upon laws that determine the happiness or misery of men upon this earth. Its lessons have never tended to the essential selfishness of asceticism, which is so prominent a feature in Brahmanism and Buddhism, and from which Christianity and Islamism have not been exempt. Its injunction has never been, "Leave the world to itself that you may save ...
— Great Men and Famous Women. Vol. 3 of 8 • Various

... times he would speak to his followers of the Divine mysteries and of the rigorous asceticism by which alone these were to be reached and men to be regenerated and the Kingdom to be won; and sometimes he would sing to them Spanish songs in his sweet, troubling voice—strange Cabalistic verses, composed by himself ...
— Dreamers of the Ghetto • I. Zangwill

... to any ideal never fails of at least one moment of consummate realisation and enjoyment. Such a moment was granted to Matthew Arnold when he wrote A Summer Night. Whether that rather vague life-philosophy of his, that erection of a melancholy agnosticism plus asceticism into a creed, was anything more than a not ungraceful or undignified will-worship of Pride, we need not here argue out. But we have seen how faithfully the note of it rings through the verse of these years. And here it rings not only faithfully, but almost triumphantly. The lips are touched ...
— Matthew Arnold • George Saintsbury

... sits changeless amid infinite series of changes, all-wise amid infinite follies and wickednesses of His creatures, all-merciful and all-loving amid the hate and opposition of weak, finite hearts, becomes a gloomy asceticism, or a fierce inquisitorial despotism, perverting Him—this glorious and loving God—into a cold, selfish, unreasonable Being, as far removed from our sympathies and love as He is from caring for us, and only existing to ...
— Continental Monthly, Vol. 4, No 3, September 1863 - Devoted to Literature and National Policy • Various

... went on with strange elation, "are nothing. The old queer instinct of asceticism within me, that made a preacher of an Epicurean and an athlete, has come back to its kingship. Its sublime authority is now supreme. I despise life, and have learned to live. There is no task so hard but that the king ...
— The One Woman • Thomas Dixon

... broad moral outlook, with a sane idealism which refrains from demanding impossibilities, and resolutely thrusts aside not only the vulgar platitudes of worldliness, but the equally mischievous platitudes of an outworn and insincere asceticism, for the wise sexual hygienist knows, with Pascal, that "he who tries to be an angel becomes a beast," and is less anxious to make his pupils ineffective angels than effective men and women, content to say with Browning, "I may put forth angels' pinions, ...
— The Task of Social Hygiene • Havelock Ellis

... ascetic, reading the charm and throwing some dust on the ashes of Mandaravati, causes the maiden to rise up alive, more beautiful than ever. Then the three quarrel about her, each claiming her as his own. The first says, "She is mine, for I preserved her ashes and resuscitated her by asceticism." The second says, "She belongs to me, for she was produced by the efficacy of sacred bathing-places." The third says, "She is my wife, for she was won by ...
— Filipino Popular Tales • Dean S. Fansler

... the Hall," was the reply, and the monk, with a laugh savouring little of asceticism, said he would seek him there, and accordingly crossed the court to the noble Hall, with its lofty dark marble columns, and the Round Table of King Arthur suspended at the upper end. The governor of the Castle had risen from his meal long ago, but the garrison ...
— The Armourer's Prentices • Charlotte Mary Yonge



Words linked to "Asceticism" :   self-denial, self-discipline, self-control, ascesis, austerity, school of thought, philosophy, ism, philosophical system, monasticism, doctrine



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