Returning to Logica
Abelard recalls that he became a monk at St.-Denis “more out of shame than out of devotion to a religious way of life,” and that Heloise took the veil at Argenteuil amid many tears.1 According to gossip reported by Roscelin, Abelard was still visiting her and bringing her money during those early years at Argenteuil. He makes no reference to her, however, in any of his writings from this period. He reports that when he first suffered castration, he felt like those eunuchs and other animals whose testicles had been crushed, who were therefore forbidden in the Old Testament from entering the temple of the Lord. Returning to teaching logica and divinity provided a way in which he could distance himself from the past as well as from the scandal surrounding his affair with Heloise.
The large number of non-monastic students who attended Abelard's classes at St.-Denis created a problem at the abbey. Criticism of the disturbance they created prompted Abelard to move to an unnamed dependency of the abbey, where he could teach without interference. In the Historia calamitatum, Abelard looks back on these years (1117–1121) as a time when he, like Origen, was able to encourage his students to move from tasting philosophy to the study of “true philosophy.”2 Probably during
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Publication information: Book title: Abelard and Heloise. Contributors: Constant J. Mews - Author. Publisher: Oxford University Press. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 2004. Page number: 81.
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