I am pleased to share this poem by my friend, Rafael Jesús González, who raises the question posed in the title of this DM.
(To hear the poet read his work in Spanish and English, click HERE.)
We were surprised by the place
to which the star brought us
so little worthy of a king’s birth,
but our calculations left no doubt —
a stable redolent of hay and dung
inhabited by an ox and a donkey,
occasioned by lambs and kids.
The child like all new born
had nothing to distinguish him.
The little woman, like all good mother
sweet and tender, the man no longer young
showed tenderness and solicitude;
they were even more surprised and perplexed
by our visit than we for being there.
We left the gifts we had brought from so far:
the little gold coffer chased
with lions and suns, the ivory box filled
with incense, the ebony urn filled with myrrh,
and we left in silence.
Finally the youngest of us murmured,
“Perhaps he brings revolution.”
The other two kept in silence
the hope his saying awoke.
What is the “Revolution” and “hope” promised on Epiphany Day?
Not ending a peaceful transfer of power and with it the end of democracy.
Not the triumph of the kind of masculinity that builds empires and marches to war and worships the gods of Patriarchy such as Control, Lies, Fear, Cowardliness, and Knowledge that trumps Wisdom.
A revolution and kingdom of justice that flows like water and peace that no one can take from us and compassion rules and manliness is defined, for men and women alike, as integrity and virtue. As St. Thomas Aquinas put it, “It is a great thing to do miracles, but it is a greater thing to live virtuously.”
From such a place, hope follows.
See Matthew Fox, The Tao of Thomas Aquinas, pp. 91-120.
To read the transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.
Banner Image: Mural honoring Archbishop Oscar Romero of El Salvador, martyr and “voice of the voiceless.” San Salvador, exterior of La Hospital Divina Providencia. Photographer unknown, posted to Twitter by BAMEAnglican.
Queries for Contemplation
Meditate on the poem above. Now offer your own insight about the meaning of Epiphany—Manifestation—to you and humanity today.
The Tao of Thomas Aquinas: Fierce Wisdom for Hard Times
A stunning spiritual handbook drawn from the substantive teachings of Aquinas’ mystical/prophetic genius, offering a sublime roadmap for spirituality and action.
Foreword by Ilia Delio.
“What a wonderful book! Only Matt Fox could bring to life the wisdom and brilliance of Aquinas with so much creativity. The Tao of Thomas Aquinas is a masterpiece.”
–Caroline Myss, author of Anatomy of the Spirit