The term closure, derived from the Latin word clausūra, can refer to the obligation that certain religious have not to leave an enclosure and that also prevents the laity from entering it. By extension, the idea refers to the place where this practice takes place and the type of life of those who are subjected to these restrictions.
According to DigoPaul, the closure, in this framework, implies a regime of isolation. The nuns and cloistered monks do not leave the convent or monastery, and in turn prevent people who are not part of their order from entering the establishments.
The objective of the closing is to achieve the propitious climate to get closer to God, focusing on prayer and meditation. It can be said that the cloistered religious intercede between people and divinities through prayer and meditation.
The Discalced Carmelites, the Benedictine monks and the Trappists are some of the religious communities that, even today, live in closed regimes. This does not prevent them from having a certain contact with the rest of society in certain areas and contexts.
As in any community, the people who live in cloistered monasteries must follow a series of rules. In the following paragraphs we will point out some of the most common, taking as reference the female monasteries of Spain, which account for around a quarter of the total worldwide.
Broadly speaking, we can say that the life of the cloistered nuns is more austere and difficult than that of the rest of the women, at least of the laity, since they dedicate themselves completely to prayer and contemplation, as well as the Poor Clares. and the aforementioned Carmelites.
It is undeniable that closure implies being separated from the rest of the people, separated from the world, although this is carried out with the purpose of approaching it through the spiritual plane. In this framework, it is important to point out that the surrender to the authority of a monastery should never negatively interfere with the civil status of religious people, for which the superiors must guarantee them a life compatible with the needs of the outside world.
This brings us to the question that many people ask regarding cloistered nuns and monks: can they leave the convent when they want to? Well the answer is that they are free to make this decision as long as they agree with their superiors. Delving a bit into the rules established by the Vatican, however, it is the Mother Superior who can authorize or refuse entries and exits.
Some common situations in which cloistered nuns leave monasteries are medical appointments and government elections. Regarding the cessation of their commitment to the vow of silence and life in closure, they have the right to do so when and as they wish.
The act that is carried out to end an event or that establishes the closure of something is also called closure. For example: “The closing ceremony of the Olympic Games will take place next Sunday”, “Unfortunately I will not be able to attend the closing of the symposium as I have other commitments assumed”, “The authorities decided to close the restaurant for bromatological reasons”.
Another use of the notion of closure appears in the field of sport. In several Latin American countries, the season of a soccer championship is divided into two tournaments: the Apertura Tournament and the Clausura Tournament. Beyond what the name suggests, sometimes the Clausura Tournament takes place at the beginning of the calendar year.