Many familiar with Dominicans are aware of the Order’s dedication to veritas, Latin for "truth." St. Dominic knew that, given the heretical challenges of his day, the only real path to conversion for his opponents would be through the light of truth, the Word of God in its authentic interpretation. It is for this reason that St. Dominic often is called "the light of the Church" or is represented in images of light, such as a flame or torch. The scriptural conviction that the truth sets the world free is the foundation of all Dominican action as members strive to shine a light on Gospel truth for the Church and for the world. All elements of Dominican life, from contemplation and study to community and ministry, are centered on the search for truth, with God as the ultimate source of all Truth.
Dominicans recognize that, although it may seem contradictory, a major component necessary for this lifelong search is a sense of humility, an understanding that no individual has a corner on truth. Truth never can fully be grasped. It is, therefore, the pursuit of truth - not the possession of it - that guides Dominican life. Sometimes the pursuit of truth even can mean letting go of long-standing, cherished assumptions in favor of previously unimaginable possibilities.
Dominicans strive to follow the lead of their brother St. Thomas Aquinas, who wholeheartedly believed that some truth exists in everyone and in everything. He was never dismissive of others' ideas, but he took all opinions and assertions seriously, reflectively distinguishing truth from error. His beliefs about truth were in concert with St. Dominic's and set a precedent for modern Dominican spirituality and action - that the pursuit of truth is a shared journey of discovery.
Truth is one of many values Dominicans hold dear: