Ascetic



a person who dedicates his or her life to a pursuit of contemplative ideals and practices extreme self-denial or self-mortification for religious reasons.
a person who leads an austerely simple life, especially one who abstains from the normal pleasures of life or denies himself or herself material satisfaction.
(in the early Christian church) a monk; hermit.
relating to , the doctrine that one can reach a high spiritual state through the practice of extreme self-denial or self-mortification.
rigorously abstinent; austere:
an ascetic existence.
exceedingly strict or severe in religious exercises or self-mortification.
Contemporary Examples

As ascetic as Aries is, you delight in luxuries now, indulging any urge to splurge.
Zodiac Beast: April 24-30 Starsky + Cox April 22, 2011

Not surprisingly, this did not sit well with the ascetic early Christians.
Meet Krampus, the Seriously Bad Santa Jay Michaelson December 4, 2014

Faith may bolster the ascetic, but boredom wears him down—grime and solitude breed apathy.
A Book About Boredom Is Anything But Jeremy Axelrod June 19, 2011

An Arab legend has it that the intoxicating effects of hashish were discovered by an ascetic monk in 1155.
The Chronic Chronicles: A History of Pot Roger Roffman July 5, 2014

Yet he was also a Catholic bishop who died in poverty after giving his money to the poor and devoting himself to an ascetic life.
How Noah’s Flood Spurred Science: David R. Montgomery’s ‘The Rocks Don’t Lie’ David Sessions August 27, 2012

Historical Examples

St. John is the lean prophet of the desert, the ascetic, and the eater of locusts and wild honey.
Catalogue of the Gallery of Art of The New York Historical Society anonymous

Here was the pale face of the ascetic, and there the guileless eyes of the saint.
The Christian Hall Caine

The next Birth Story relates that he was the son of blind, ascetic parents, to whom he acted as a faithful servant.
The Kingdom of the Yellow Robe Ernest Young

But the ascetic on the cross is a God for the sick and aged.
The Great Hunger Johan Bojer

Those who saw him pass would have said that there went an ascetic bent on judgment.
The Golden House Charles Dudley Warner

noun
a person who practises great self-denial and austerities and abstains from worldly comforts and pleasures, esp for religious reasons
(in the early Christian Church) a monk
adjective
rigidly abstinent or abstemious; austere
of or relating to ascetics or asceticism
intensely rigorous in religious austerities
adj.

1640s, from Greek asketikos “rigorously self-disciplined, laborious,” from asketes “monk, hermit,” earlier “one who practices an art or trade,” from askein “to exercise, train,” originally “to train for athletic competition, practice gymnastics, exercise.”
n.

“one of the early Christians who retired to the desert to live solitary lives of meditation and prayer,” 1670s, from ascetic (adj.).

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    a person who dedicates his or her life to a pursuit of contemplative ideals and practices extreme self-denial or self-mortification for religious reasons. a person who leads an austerely simple life, especially one who abstains from the normal pleasures of life or denies himself or herself material satisfaction. (in the early Christian church) a monk; […]

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