Opus Dei: An Archaeology of Duty (Meridian: Crossing Aesthetics)
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Regula magistri. The concordance of Vogüé’s edition registers around thirty occurrences for the expression opus Dei and shows, moreover, that already in the first quarter of the sixth century (when, according to Vogüé, the Regula Dei would have been composed) the syntagma had become a technical term for the monastic office. If it is a matter of an invention on the part of the author of the rule, it could derive from his definition of the monastery as officina divinae artis (Officina vero
shadows may cede place to the body and the images pass away with the presence of truth, the ancient observance is abolished by the new sacrament, the sacrifice is sacrificed, and the legal holiday is fulfilled in the very instant in which it is transformed” (Casel 6, 38). From Mystery to Effect It seems difficult to deny that in this passage effectus does not designate simply the Wirkung, the effects of grace produced by the sacramental rite, but even and above all the Wirklichkeit, the
sign of something sacred, but is also efficacy.” Or in the formula that Aquinas cites as canonical, the sacraments efficiunt quod figurant, effectuate what they signify. The paradigm of this effectiveness of the sacrament is the performativity of Christ’s words that is at the center of the eucharistic liturgy. In this sense two passages from Ambrose are fundamental. In them the word of Christ is defined by means of its effective or operative character (for this purpose, Ambrose coins the
Ambrose, and constitutes the specific work of the ethics of late scholasticism, in fact has the goal of conferring effectiveness to virtue in the governance of habit and potential. For this reason, in Aquinas’s Summa the treatment of the virtues is preceded by a theorization of the problem of habitus (Summa theologica IaIIae, qq. 49–54), which articulates and unfolds in a systematic way the hints scattered in Aristotle’s work. First of all, habit is presented here as a specifically human form of
‘pignus’ in der Liturgie,” in Tübinger theologische Quartalschrift 129 (1949). Epiphanius, The Panarion of Epiphanius of Salamis, 2 vols., trans. Frank Williams (Leiden: Brill, 1994). Festus, De verborum significatu quae supersunt cum Pauli epitome, ed. Wallace M. Lindsay (Stuttgart: in aedibus Teubneri, 1997). Foucault 1: Michel Foucault, Le Gouvernement de soi et des autres, ed. Frédéric Gros (Paris: Gallimard, 2008). Foucault 2: ———, Dits et écrits, II: 1970–1977 (Paris: Gallimard, 1994).