“His guideline was truth and not the spirit of the time.”

Speaking of the current age of philosophy which cuts out the supernatural and is “a time of concentrated nonsense which sits well because it has the appearance of truth” she referred to the characteristic unity of her late-husband’s thoughts which, in contrast to the “blunder” of Aristotle, kept God as the reference point.

If you examine his thought in different philosophical areas, she explained, “there is a perfect line of continuity, you can predict, so to speak, what he’s going to do … he becomes a Catholic and he understands this is ‘the truth,’ not (just) ‘a truth’ because Christ is the only person, neither Mohamed nor Moses, nor anybody, ever dared say ‘I am the truth!’

Dr. Hildebrand explained that, according to her husband, “if you truly understand the meaning of truth, it leads you to the truth and then you fall on your knees and you adore.”

His philosophy, she explained, “did not dictate what he had to think, it was simply an approach to life: let the object reveal itself and purify your mind, eliminate prejudices.”

This, she said, is why he was able to take a new approach to the classical philosophies, purified and with fresh eyes.

“His guideline was truth and not the spirit of the time.”

And in his final days, he called her to his side. Noting the weakness of his body but the “soul of a lion” that remained, he told her that if ever in his writings there was even a hint of incongruency, “if you find a line which does not agree with the Church, burnt it all!

“And that,” she exclaimed, “was my husband, Dietrich von Hildebrand!”

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