Tomorrow, August 8th, is the Feast of St. Dominic, the founder of the Order of Preachers, otherwise known as the Dominicans. It is always appropriate to celebrate a feast on the eve of the feast. And as we are celebrating the 800th Anniversary of the Dominican order this year, we could actually celebrate Dominic everyday.
The photo above is detail of a fresco named, Madonna delle Ombre at the Convento (or now, Museo) San Marco, in Florence. Dominic holding what we call his last will and testament. According to his brothers, he gave this to us on his deathbed: ” Have charity, guard humility, hold fast to voluntary poverty.” He promised that he would continue to guide them in spirit. He died on August 2, 1221, and was buried as he wished, “at the feet of his brethren.”
The world as pure object is something that is not there. It is not a reality outside us for which we exist….It is a living and self-creating mystery of which I am myself a part, to which I am myself, my own unique door.
– Thomas Merton, Contemplation in a World of Action