They were free to perform cultural activities and at the same time were bound to the fundamentals of the Church. Later on, similar things developed, namely attempts to bring this monastic spirit more into groups other than the monks themselves. I can mention two groups – the knights and the knight orders who were fighting against the pagans and conquering eastern Germany; and if you want a sweeping historical statement, these knight orders who fought a thousand years ago for a Christianization and at the same time Germanization of the East of Europe, as far as possible, have now been conquered, in this 20th century, with the help of the Christian nations of the West, namely the Slavic groups have retaken what was taken away from them by the knight orders of the Middle Ages, and Christianity was suppressed for the sake of the Communist form of a non-Christian secularism.
It was a great world-historical event (as great as the battles of the knights in the Middle Ages) when in the20th century, especially in the conference of Berlin in 1945, Eastern Europe was surrendered and the Germanic population which lived there for a thousand years was thrown out.
Now if you see the situation in this perspective, then you also see a little of the importance of these medieval orders.
Related to them are the Crusades and the spirit of the crusaders. It was also an introduction of the monastic spirit into the lower aristocracy, and the effect was that they were to conquer – for a certain time at least — Palestine and the eastern Byzantine Empire. But they also finally were repelled.
3) This is monasticism. Now I come to Sectarianism. Sectarianism should not be understood so much from the dogmatic point of view, as one usually does – of course sometimes they have crazy speciality with respect to doctrine, and leave the Church for this reason; but never believe them: that is not the real reason. The reason is psychological and sociological much more than theological. Sectarianism is the criticism of the Church for the gap between its claim and its reality. And it is the desire of special groups to represent groups of consecration, of sanctification, of holiness. It is an attempt. to carry through some of the monastic radicalism – not all of it, not the ascetic elements, often – radically or moderately, as the case may be, but in terms which are anti-hierarchical.