Since the phrase Totus Tuus means “Totally Yours,” and since John Paul II took the motto to show his devotion to Mary, then that means he was “totally devoted to Mary,” or so some say. How does one refute this?
[quote=Returnee]How does one refute this?
There is no need to do so. All that one need do is to explain what is meant by the idea of being “totally devoted to Mary.”
There are certain unstated assumptions upon which proper understanding of Catholic devotional piety depends. That is because the devotional piety is being presented to a group (i.e., Catholics) presumably familiar with the tenets of the Catholic faith. In this case, John Paul II’s motto stated that he was dedicating himself totally to Mary, but left unstated that Catholics know that such devotion to Mary was dependent upon and found its source in devotion to Christ.
It is because one is totally devoted to Christ that one also can be totally devoted to those individuals who were themselves totally devoted to him. As Mary is the archetype of total devotion to Christ, Catholics know that total devotion to her does not end in her but points to Christ and finds all its value in Christ.
For more information on the concept of unstated assumptions in human discourse, please see the article linked below.
The Universe of Discourse by Jimmy Akin