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Living With A Saint: Monastic Identity, Community, And The Ideal Of Asceticism In The Life Of An Irish Saint

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Chapter Summary

Irish monasticism was dedicated to the ideal of communitas and, although asceticism came to characterize the unique spirituality of the Irish church, commitment to coenobitism would have been essential to the survival of monastic foundations. This chapter begins with a brief look at the ideology of Irish monastic identity and some pertinent aspects of Irish monastic foundations. It discusses the context in which the life was written and its possible influences on how Darereca is portrayed. The chapter presents an examination of relevant portions of the text which describe a steady development in her saintly career from her first faltering attempts to balance the characteristic actions of a saint with the needs of her community to her achievement of a successful balance between ascetic practices and communal life.

Keywords: asceticism; Darereca; Irish church; Irish monastic identity; Irish Saint



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