The first form of monasticism was the lonely hermit. Anthony is regarded by many as the first monk and soon had hundreds of imitators. With Constantine’s adoption of the Christian faith, there was a resultant decline in Christian commitment. Thus, the hermit often fled not so much from the world as from the world in the church. This protest of a corrupt institution led into the dangers of a pronounced individualism. From its beginnings in Egypt it spread to Syria, to Asia Minor, and eventually throughout Western Europe.
[tags]Anthony, BlogRodent, church-history, ChurchRodent, Constantine, history, Monasticism[/tags]