In the hands of a genius or a saint, or, even more so , a man who, like Bernard, is both, the artificial, the factitious, and art become natural, or, rather, nature yields itself unrestrainedly to art and its laws.
The specific type of cultural engagement of monasticism does not simply dissolve culture. It creates a new culture. Few have illustrated this with such erudition and passion as did Fr. Jean LeClercq, OSB. I opened with his description of the high art of St. Bernard’s prose and poetry.