My problem is that I don't so much like rules. Any of them, I'm not choosy. I don't read instruction manuals, and I don't like people telling me I'm doing it "wrong." I'm hard headed that way, and in my children I find a mirror of what happens when one refuses to "listen." Funny, but that's exactly how the Rule of St. Benedict begins, "Listen, my children..." Just like a young vine needs guidance in its growth from the arbor, so a child needs guidance from his parents; and (reluctantly acknowledged) I need guidance from my spiritual fathers and mothers.
Fine... I'll listen. Are you willing to listen to Benedict? I discovered he's not a preacher, not a priest, but a "layman." An ordinary working stiff who was trying to help his friends find some sort of center of soul in the busyness of working. And he wasn't talking to just religious people, as he says, "To you, therefore, my words are now addressed, whoever you may be, who are renouncing your own will..." Hmmm...there's a secret there, from Benny, that the rule is first to listen, then to admit you may be going about things all the wrong way. Thousands of men and later women listend to Rule #1 from Benedict of Nursia. That's why he came to be known as "the founder of western Christian monasticism".
So... Rule #1 from Benedict today is simple.
Stop and Listen...you may be wrong.