CHAPTER 16 – The Celebration of the Divine Office during the Day

Seven times a day have I praised you... RB 16:1

Benedict is quoting Psalm 119:164 in Chapter 16 of the Rule. Seven literally means “sevenfold”. In Scripture this phrase is used to indicate that one needed to pray often.

John Cassian, an inspiration and source for Benedict, claims in his Institute (2:1) that the real point of praying seven times daily was not so much to match the number, but to “pray always”.

The suggestion of praying seven times a day was used by early monastics to help seekers be mindful that the life they were embracing was a life of prayer, gratitude, and thanksgiving.

May our lives be filled with these same important values.