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Sacred Signs: The Altar
This liturgical meditation is reprinted from Romano Guardini's book, Sacred Signs. Man has many powers. By knowing them, he can seize upon all things around, stars and mountains, seas and rivers, trees and animals, and all manhood which surround him, and he can draw them all into himself. He can love them; but he can also hate them and repel them from him. He can set himself against them, or he can long for them and draw them to him. He can grasp and transform the world round about him according to his will. Waves of all kinds pass through his heart, of joy and longing, of sorrow and love, of peace and excitement. But his noblest power is that of recognising that there is a higher Power above him, of reverencing this Power and of dedicating himself to It. Man can acknowledge God above him, he can adore him and give himself to Him, ‘so that God be glorified.’ We are to let our souls be lit up with God’s greatness: we are to adore that greatness, we are not to remain selfishly enclosed within, but we are to stride beyond ourselves and set ourselves to the task of glorifying God in the highest. This giving of ourselves is sacrifice.