The Benedict Option is, in my opinion, is misunderstood. Here is another perspective to consider.
There is a dizzy-ing amount of thinking now in the public. My first inclination is to say that not all of it is worth one’s time. It is, however, true to say that an educated person is going to want to deeply think about the issues raised in the Option. Whether you believe the line written by Alasdair MacIntyre “We are waiting not for a Godot, but for another—doubtless very different—St. Benedict,” should have ever been written, or that the author regrets writing it is now in the public form and people need to digest it appropriately and reasonably.
Rod Dreher is opening the door to deeper understanding of the Christian life and our engagement in it. Of course, we nee to be docile (to have some discernment with) to the Holy Spirit –this is required. What I see are knee jerk reactions and romanticisms. There is no doubt that an “option” needs to be interrogated, verified, and subjected even to ecclesial review and insight.
As Dom Gérard once said, “Monks built Europe unintentionally. Their adventure is primarily, if not exclusively, interior. They are moved by thirst for the absolute, thrust for another world. Thus monasteries, pointing silently to heaven, are an obstinate reminder that there is another world of which this world is but the image, the herald, and the prefiguration.”
One way to deepen your thinking on the Benedict Option is to read St. John Paul’s work on the vocation of Christians, Christifidelis laici and the Benedict Option material together. Then look at the way we worship, then come together to speak about the Dreher proposal.