Ubi Caritas et Amor Deus ibi est
The other day I was thinking back upon my days of school, and also the school motto ‘ubi caritas et amor deus ibi est’ which they translated from Latin to mean ‘where there is love and kindness God is there’ however my friends at google translate suggest it means ‘where charity and love are, God is there’. Either way the point of what I am about to say remains the same.
Whilst contemplating this piece of Latin text I realised that it causes a problem. Being the motto for a Catholic school the motto if taken to be true could disprove a fundamental Catholic belief (providing we add a few implicit premises to the mix). On the other hand if we take the motto to be true aswell as the fundamental Catholic belief then the motto itself becomes redundant, thus needs not be expressed. Now please allow me to explain.
The belief I call into question here is that God is omnipresent, therefore God is everywhere. Now if the motto is true it suggests that God is only where we find love and charity (or love and kindness) and thereforth God cannot be everywhere disproving the Catholic belief that God is omnipresent. However if we take the claim that God is omnipresent to be true, as any good Catholic would and should, then God would be found where there is love and charity (or love and kindess), but as God is everywhere this goes without saying, hence the motto is now redundant as it adds nothing new to the nature of God.
Posted on September 3, 2012, in linquistical, theological and tagged catholic belief, charity, God, kindess, love, motto, nature of god, omnipresence, school motto. Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.