When reading about the Rule of Saint Benedict and the categories and lifestyles in which they lived under I was surprised to learn that some of these forms were considered monastic living. My prior understanding about monks and their lifestyle was that they were individuals devoted to a very simple life composed of bare necessities in order to focus on leading a life committed to the service of God and obtaining a certain level of spirituality. The Rule of Saint Benedict explained four categories of monks and the lifestyle that typically follow each category. Surprisingly, I was unaware of the kinds of monks that identified with the Saraibites and Gryatory- it was interesting to me that those who followed such lifestyles were considered monks; usually, one would not infer that a monk would tailor his beliefs and regulations according to momentary interests so conveniently, but perhaps my understanding from the reading is skewed.
The plan of the St. Gall monastery impressed me in its large scale. Given the time period in which it was designed, it is remarkable to see the detailed planning of a site dedicated to conform the lives of monks. I believe the main appeal of completing the plan of St. Gall, aside from tourist attraction purposes mentioned in the article about its construction, is to preserve the authenticity of monastic living and to reinstate the influence of the Rule of St. Benedict in religion.