Hildegard of Bingen was a German nun who lived in the 1100s. She was a learned polymath and had numerous achievements in various fields, including medicine, nutrition, theology, botany, music and literature. She would have been familiar with illuminated manuscripts from that time and the Latin language as well. She was gifted with visions from God from a very young age. She also wrote letters, poems, and speeches. Hildegard became an abbess of a Benedictine monastery in Germany. In 2012, Pope Benedict named her a Doctor of the Church.
Although Hildegard of Bingen was a nun and a celibate, her life holds many lessons for singles. Here are the top five lessons for singles from Hildegard of Bingen.
1. EAT HEALTHY FOODS & TAKE CARE OF YOUR BODY
Hildegard of Bingen wrote many pieces on nutrition and medicine and was a skilled herbalist as well. She believed that certain foods gave humans more joy while other foods took away from our joy. The lesson for singles is to eat more fruits and vegetables, especially green vegetables. Try to cut out sugar from your diet, which can drain our energy and lead to depression.
Often in the Bible, God talks about how the leaves of certain plants are medicinal. In the same way, what we eat can heal our body. Taking care of our body is part of good stewardship and that is one step toward being a good spouse. It’s part of being a better you. Taking good care of our bodies helps us to serve the Lord better. So, take time for meals.
Also, consider switching to green tea as your beverage of choice, along with many glasses of pure water. Green tea contains antioxidants which are anti-inflammatory and very healing for the body. Green tea will help you look and feel great. Investigate the many types of green tea available, such as matcha, toasted brown rice flavor, or mint-flavored.
Also, check with your doctor first and then consider taking a vitamin D supplement. Vitamin D is crucial for the body. Those of us in northern climates don’t often get enough of this vitamin which is so important for many body functions. The normal person should take 8000 I/U of Vitamin D daily.
A daily probiotic is also very healthful. The intestinal flora is the key to our immune system. A probiotic helps to keep the intestinal flora in balance.
2. MAKE HERBS PART OF YOUR LIFE
Hildegard of Bingen would have had a vast knowledge of herbs. These wonderful plants often contain a lot of chlorophyll which is very healthy for you. You can often finely chop herbs such as parsley, cilantro, green onions and add them to the top of your salad. Sprinkle the top of your salad with some fine olive oil, the juice of a lemon, and some sea salt. Basil, dill, and thyme are other herbs that can be wonderful additions a meal. Another fine herb is chamomile. This herb is lovely as a tea. Enjoy!
3. NEVER STOP LEARNING
Hildegard was gifted in numerous subjects. She had a love of learning and took an interest in the natural world around her. S he made contributions to the fields of medicine, botany, music, theology, and literature. Theologian, musician, scientist, poet, botanist-Hildegard did many things.
All of us have gifts and talents from God. God wants us to use our gifts and talents and to develop them. As a single, you have more time in your life now than possibly in the future. So use that time well-take courses, read books, develop your gifts and talents and make a contribution to our world. Turn off the television and spend time in study. Learn another language, improve your public speaking ability, or write about what interests you. Hildegard wrote many speeches, and preached throughout Germany. She also wrote beautiful celestial-sounding music as well as composing morality plays. The world and the Church need your gifts! This will make you a better spouse and possibly a better parent in the future as well.
4. CULTIVATE VIRTUE
Hildegard wrote plays about the seven virtues and the seven vices. As a nun, she also would have visited the sick. This exemplifies the virtue of charity in her life. As singles, we should work on improving our souls, we should work on practicing a life of virtue and on rooting out vice from our lives. Find out what virtue you most need to work on. Pray to God. Ask Him to help you grow in that virtue. Root out vice from your life by fasting and by the sacrament of penance. A life of virtue will better prepare you for your vocation if you are called to marriage and family life.
5. PRAY FOR THE GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
Hildegard certainly had many gifts of the Holy Spirit including the gift of visions as well as others. Pray to God for the gifts of the Holy Spirit. God certainly has gifts that He wants to give us. The gifts He wants to give us usually correspond to our mission. Gifts of the Holy Spirit include the gift of wisdom, understanding, knowledge, discernment, counsel, fortitude, piety, and fear of the Lord.
Hildegard of Bingen’s life has many lessons for today’s single. We can all reap the wisdom of her life.