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Article: Religious vows

Religious vows

Religious Vows in Christianity

  • Monks and nuns following the Rule of Saint Benedict make the Benedictine vow, which includes obedience, stability, and conversion of manners.
  • Mendicant orders like the Franciscans and Dominicans profess chastity, poverty, and obedience.
  • Clerks regular, such as the Jesuits and Redemptorists, follow a similar format and may add a fourth vow.
  • Poor Clares profess a vow of enclosure.
  • The Missionaries of Charity, founded by St. Teresa of Calcutta, take a fourth vow of special service to the poorest of the poor.

Types of Religious Vows

  • Religious vows can be temporary or final.
  • Simple vows and solemn vows are the two varieties of religious vows.
  • Solemn, perpetual vows represent the highest level of commitment.
  • Some religious congregations can invite their members to solemn vows, while others can only take simple vows.
  • The pope can supersede a perpetual vow if a member is chosen to become a bishop.

Other Forms of Consecrated Life in the Catholic Church

  • Secular institutes, diocesan hermits, and consecrated virgins live consecrated lives in the world.
  • Diocesan hermits individually profess the three evangelical counsels.
  • Consecrated virgins express their commitment through a public 'sanctum propositum.'
  • Societies of apostolic life also exist within the Catholic Church.

Religious Vows in the Lutheran Church

  • Further information about Lutheran orders and societies can be found in the category dedicated to them.

Religious Vows in the Eastern Orthodox Church

  • Vows became a normal part of the tonsure service in the Christian East over time.
  • Orthodox monks take vows of chastity, poverty, obedience, and stability.
  • The vows are administered by the abbot or hieromonk.
  • There are three degrees of monasticism in the Orthodox Church: ryassaphore, stavrophore, and schema-monk.
  • Tonsure must be performed by an ordained priest who is at least of the same rank as the candidate.

Jain Ethics and Five Vows

  • Jainism teaches five ethical duties known as five vows.
  • These vows are called anuvratas (small vows) for Jain laypersons and mahavratas (great vows) for Jain mendicants.
  • The five vows are Ahiṃsā (non-violence), Satya (truth), Asteya (not stealing), Brahmacharya (celibacy), and Aparigraha (non-possessiveness).

Ahiṃsā (Non-violence)

  • Ahiṃsā is the first major vow taken by Jains.
  • It means causing no harm to other human beings and all living beings, particularly animals.
  • Ahiṃsā applies to actions, speech, and thoughts.
  • It is the highest ethical duty in Jainism.
  • Practicing Ahiṃsā helps reduce negative karma and promotes compassion.

Satya (Truth)

  • Satya is the vow to always speak the truth.
  • It means not lying or speaking what is not true.
  • Jain laypersons should not encourage or approve anyone who speaks untruths.
  • Upholding Satya promotes honesty and integrity.
  • Speaking the truth helps maintain trust and fosters harmonious relationships.

Asteya (Not Stealing)

  • Asteya is the vow to not steal.
  • Jain laypersons should not take anything that is not willingly given.
  • Jain mendicants should ask for permission before taking anything.
  • Asteya promotes respect for others' belongings and property.
  • By practicing Asteya, Jains cultivate a sense of contentment and detachment from material possessions.

Brahmacharya (Celibacy) and Aparigraha (Non-Possessiveness)

  • Brahmacharya is the vow of celibacy for Jain monks and nuns.
  • For laypersons, it means being faithful to one's partner.
  • Aparigraha is the vow of non-possessiveness.
  • It includes non-attachment to material and psychological possessions.
  • Jain monks and nuns renounce property and social relations, owning nothing and being attached to no one.

Religious vows Data Sources

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