On the feast day of St. Dominic we should recall the statement of Blessed John Paul II on the example of St Dominic for faith:
"The first of the principles of faith affirms the absolute primacy of God in the intelligence, in the heart, in the life of man. You know how well St. Dominic responded to this requirement of faith in his religious life: 'He spoke only with God or of God.' If one does not accept this subordination, if one exalts the greatness of man to the detriment of the primacy of God, one arrives at the failure of ideologies that postulate the self-sufficiency of man and give rise to the proliferation of errors which the modern world bears the weight and of which it does not succeed in breaking the cultural and psychological yoke." L'Osservatore Romano, 5 Sept. 1983, p. 4
Faith is a gift in the order of intelligence. It is not a matter of sentiment, feeling, or wish. Maritain wrote: "The truth of Faith is the infinitely transcendent truth of the mystery of God." (Peasant of the Garonne, p. 89) Maritain cites numerous passages from scripture concerning the truth of faith as the truth of God. This torrent of passages overwhelms us in the boldness of the assertion of faith as truth. Any one of these passages are worthy of meditation on this feast day of St Dominic, whose order's motto is "Veritas." Here is Maritain's list:
1 John 5:6 The Spirit is Truth
2 John 3 In truth and love
3 John 4, 8 my children follow the truth
1 John 3:19 We are of the truth
Rom 1:18 men by their wickedness hold truth captive of injustice
2 Thessal. 2:10, 12 they who persih or are condemned . . did not believe in truth
1 Tim 2:4 God desires all to be saved and come to knowledge of the Truth
1 Cor 13:6 joy in truth
Ephes. 4:24 holiness of truth
James 1:18 word of truth
John 14:6 I am the way, the truth . .
18:37 For this I was born . . . to bear witness to Truth
4:24 worship in Spirit and Truth
14:17 and 15:26 and 16:13 on The Spirit of Truth
17:17,19 sanctify them in Truth
8:32 the truth will make you free
1:9 the True Light
1:14 glory of the Word is "full of grace and truth"
1:17 Truth came through Jesus Christ
As a minimum Maritain points out that a Christian cannot possibly be a relativist. In addition, a Christian is committed to the possibility of Truth and philosophically refuses to be confined by modern idealism. Maritain asks "in what drawer of [Kant's] Critique [of Pure Reason] must we put the terms the assertions uttered by our Lord?" (99) Thus he says "the truth of divine revelation throws us to the heart of He who is -- and of what is, with an absolute violence which pulverizes any claim to make our mind the rule of what it knows, or to make what it knows a product of its own innate forms organizing phenomenona."
That spiritual son of St Dominic, St Thomas Aquinas, is the Apostle of Our time, because he is an apostle of Truth. Maritain explains:
The disease afflicting the modern world is in the first place a disease of the mind: it began in the mind, it has now attacked the roots of the mind. Is it surprising that the world should seem to us shrouded in darkness? Sioculus tuus fuerit nequam, totum corpus tuum tenebrosum erit. (Luke 11:34 - The light of thy body is thy eye. If thy eye be single, thy whole body will be lightsome: but if it be evil, thy body also will be darksome. Take heed therefore, that the light which is in thee, be not darkness.) Just as at the moment when the original sin was committed all the harmony of the human being was shattered, because the order that insists that the reason shall be subject to God had first been violated, so at the root of all our disorders there is apparent, in the first place and above all, a rupture in the supreme ordinations of the mind. The responsibility of philosophers in this respect is enormous. In the sixteenth century, and more particularly in the age of Descartes, the interior hierarchies of the virtue of reason were shattered. Philosophy abandoned theology to assert its own claim to be considered the supreme science, and, the mathematical science of the sensible world and its phenomena taking precedence at the same time over metaphysics, the human mind began to profess independence of God and being. . . . The revolution inaugurated by Descartes and continued by the philosophers of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, which merely let loose the destructive forces for ever active in the minds of the children of Adam, is an infinitely greater historical cataclysm than the most formidable upheavals of the crust of the earth or the economy of the nations. -- Jacques Maritain, “The Apostle Of Our Time,” chap 3 of St. Thomas Aquinas (1930) PP. 56-57The Church and Catholic educators, and most Catholic universities, have abandoned St Thomas at the peril of faith. Marx or Heidegger, Freud or Kant, Derrida or Foucault? Well as John Paul II reminds us: "If one does not accept this subordination . . . one arrives at the failure of ideologies that postulate the self-sufficiency of man and give rise to the proliferation of errors which the modern world bears the weight and of which it does not succeed in breaking the cultural and psychological yoke." Nothing less than the primacy of God in intelligence will save and renew humanity. And we have yet to speak of the primacy of God in the heart . . . . and the primacy of God in the life of man. St. Dominic has much to teach us. He loved the Truth Incarnate.