I came across this essay in my personal files. It is written by Marian Larman, a Benedictine priest who taught philosophy. This essay has a personal import for me. Larman wrote it during the last year of his life. He had retired as pastor of a small church in Saint Benedict, Louisiana. Because of declining health, he moved into the infirmary at the monastery where I was a monk. On some mornings I would visit the infirmary. Two parakeets inhabited a birdcage in the solarium, a rectangular room that allowed in plenty of sunlight. Father Marian would sit in the solarium reading a newspaper or a newly acquired book on Saint Thomas Aquinas. While an ardent Thomist, he did not hold to the belief that there we through faith we have access to an overarching truth. There may be an absolute truth but finite beings are limited to what we can know. We would have quiet conversations sometimes. I mainly listened as he told me about his ideas. Father Augustine, who took care of the infirmary allowed Father Marian to write in the infirmary. He acquired a small manual typewriter on which he wrote the following essay. While he equates truth to adequation in the following piece, a position I find difficult to swallow, since I have difficulty with the concept of absolute truth (especially in regards to theology), the following essay is a fine example of a Thomist attempting to square his views with relativism and the charge that all is merely subjective and everyone has their own version of truth (or, the verso, all is objective and all there is absolute truth). I have simply typed his essay as it appeared in the typewritten manuscript.
I am an educator and a writer. I was born in Louisiana and I now live in the Big Apple. My heart beats to the rhythm of "Ain't No Place to Pee on Mardi Gras Day". My style is of the hot sauce variety. I love philosophy sprinkles and a hot cup of café au lait.