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The path and the narrow gate

07 Dec

It is common sense culture that we should seek a region of comfort or security, but it is neither in the great paths developed by current ideologies nor by the wide door of facilities, in fact the great populists of today are sellers of facilities that are expensive security and the popular economy.

[It is always easier and more popular to propose what seems obvious, to distribute benefits or to favor big companies and big banks to make the economy grow, but they are the greatest causers of havoc in the popular economy, as we developed in the last post to idea of ​​tolerating crimes as a way of destroying culture and favoring marginality, what is called impunity is actually the wide door path to social cultural re-education.

People who grow up and develop a safe and secure life, if they are not thieves and sellers of facilities, are those who have gone through deprivation and difficulties to build a stable and sustainable life, even in the midst of crises and periods of difficulties such as the pandemic is being. which is hard to complete, social health agencies are important, but without personal care what they do is palliative.

For Christians, the biblical passage that says (Mt 11k28): “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” is complemented in the following verse Mt 11,29: “ Take my yoke under you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart and you will find rest”, which is omitted by religious people who proclaim the wide door of miracles and favours.

In the numerous correspondences that the famous physicist Niels Bohr exchanged with Albert Einstein, one of them is quite revealing, in which Bohr writes to Einstein that the root of all evil lies in the idea of ​​men that someone can possess all the truth, she who was not a believer writing to Einstein that he was, brings a fundamental idea to know that all wisdom is not present in human consciousness.

Likewise, those who proclaim the pride of possessing all the truth or all the answers to human designs, even if they proclaim divine ideas, do not hold the whole truth, which is why the importance of the verse we pointed out: “learn from me that I am meek and humble in heart,” there is no haughtiness in godly wisdom and no desire for war or strife.

 

 

What did they do with the culture?

06 Dec

Theodore Dalrymple, is the pseudonym of the English psychoanalyst Anthony Daniels, who worked in English prisons with highly dangerous criminals, and saw in them not only aspects of poverty and exclusion, but also the development of a culture of tolerance for acts of arrogance, theft and immoralities.

In a book of 26 essays he describes how the cultural media spread this culture (picture inside).

He wrote in one of his works: “For the sentimentalist, there is no criminal, but only an environment that did not give him what he owed”, and so those who said aloud that they suffered a lot in trivial situations of life, that many people go through and this does not mean that they fall into delinquency, of course this does not mean that re-education is not necessary, but preventive education is better than medicine.

It is not an exclusive sector of society, or just an ideological issue as many authors point out, but a matter of cultural influence, especially radio, television and cinema, when everyone starts to justify violence, hatred and cruelty , I remember phrases from the movie Joker that were repeated in a cult tone, for example, “cold, sarcastic and heartless. That’s what I became and I thank society”, the question is which society he chooses: efficiency or solidarity.

I don’t want to give popularity or play the role of the cultural industry that I condemn, and it is the true producer of strange values ​​and without a humanistic perspective, as the psychoanalyst points out in his books, values ​​penetrate society through the selective publishing culture that is highly permissive in values ​​and customs.

True solidarity does not just condemn, there are cases where condemnation is necessary to repress violence and hatred, but education, gives dignity and rebuilds people who have succumbed to a society of efficiency and arrogance, I remember here another successful book, which I read up to the tenth page: “The Subtle art of turning on the f**k” (in English the word also starts with f), yes it is true that there is in the book a cry against perfectionism and the culture of the extremely efficient in photos and texts in the “ media” of social networks, but it is important to remember that the author is American and there this is a general culture and not just in the media.

If last week we posted about the “paths” and the “paths”, we now want to emphasize the micro-culture, the day-to-day with more empathy, more respect and less hate, and if possible more polite.

There is no way to find ways of solidarity and peace in society if the vast majority chose to fight with weapons equal to those that the haters fight.

 

DARLRYMPLE, Theodore (2O07) Our Culture, What’s Left of It: The Mandarins and the Masses, 

 

 

The War in Eastern Europe and Covid

05 Dec

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz spoke with President Putin for the first time since September, last Friday (12/02), for more than an hour, but made little progress.

The German leader tried to find a diplomatic path to the war, suggesting a withdrawal of Russian troops from the disputed regions of Ukraine, using the words “as soon as possible”, which indicates a possible escalation in the near future.

The shipment of long-range weapons to Ukraine suggests that an attack on Russian territory is possible, which would represent a new escalation in the war.

Kremlin diplomats conceded to German pressure, and Putin’s response to Schols was: “reconsider your approaches to the context of Ukrainian events” and drew attention to the “destructive line of Western states, including Germany” and therefore rejected the diplomatic negotiation proposals.

Dmitry Peskov, spokesman for the Kremlin, told journalists earlier that Putin was open to negotiations aimed at “securing Russian interests”, but it is clear that Moscow is not willing to accept the conditions imposed by the US: “what President Biden said in fact ? He said that negotiations are only possible after Putin leaves Ukraine”, and this hypothesis does not exist for Russia.

War continues to worry humanity and its escalation could lead to a conflict of catastrophic proportions.

Another problem that affects humanity is Covid 19, whose numbers have risen again, although less than the peak of the Pandemic, in Brazil 86 deaths have been recorded in the last week and a moving average of 26 thousand cases.

 

 

Blindness and new paths

02 Dec

The greatest of all personal blindnesses is hatred, and the greatest social blindness is war, in which men lose their reason and become fanatics.

It is common in times of crisis and few know and actually defend the path of serenity and wisdom in these moments, polarization and war were signs, resorting to authoritarianism and social misguidedness is the consequence.

The visual physical limitation made me have the exact feeling of what this means, first recognizing my own blindness and then knowing how to walk with it and accept the limits resorting to healing.

Socially it is not quite like that because the narratives make men believe in what they say and say and what they imagine they see, we have already posted here Saramago’s essay and other blindness, also their meaning around the pandemic.

The social course of a society in disequilibrium and under tension is always worrying, because common sense does not always win, remember the two wars and their humanitarian disasters and other pandemics.

The Christian liturgy at this Christmas time does not speak only of the advent of the baby Jesus, it also speaks of the Parusia, that is, of a new advent, where it also says that there will be cuts and changes (Mt 3,10): “The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire”, that is, the root of all evils and disagreements.

In religious terms, conversion is asked, a change of route, in social terms it is necessary to recognize what is not in the path of hope and love, and cut it at the root because it is the only way to change.

 

Not everything that shines is gold

01 Dec

Who proclaims or hears about changes, thinks of values ​​and immediate situations that indicate earthly benefits and not straight and new paths that lead to a superior ascesis, then this is not the time to come, this is not a new advent.

Structural changes imply a change of mentality, in religious terms they mean conversion, not for this or that particular position, but for a new moral and social asceticism.

Words are often said to convince men, but they do not mean that if in fact there is coherence in what is said, in current terms they mean building narratives to favor personal interests.

Just as not everything that is new is revolutionary, and as the popular saying goes, not everything that glitters is gold, also for those who believe, not everyone who claims to be religious is in fact changing values.

The literal reading is (Mt 7,21-24): “not everyone who says Lord, Lord enters the Kingdom of God, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Therefore, anyone who does not listen to these words of mine and put them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the Rock.”

When in fact the changes start to happen, times of crisis always indicate this, consciences will also be enlightened, they will enter a “clearing”, but for now everything is confused and uncertain, each one wants to prevail his point of view, and so if fanatically opposes what he considers opposed to his interests, but a new advent is announced.

More than prophetic or apocalyptic words, they are necessary conditions and structures for a new social, moral and spiritual time, everything is immersed in conflicts of interest groups and immediate politics.

So, while the house is being put in order, everything looks upturned and uncertain, and in fact it is.

 

 

Straighten the paths

30 Nov

What is out of kilter In many times of transformation, the confused and decadent environment induces irascible reasoning and temperaments and gives vent to what philosophers called drives or, if we want to simplify, a tendency towards what is easier, more useful and more pleasurable, without worrying about the consequences.

This type of impulse can be what in the English language is called “drive” (to direct) or in German trieb (both in the negative trieben deriva, and positive. Triebende driving force), so it is possible, in a very liberal reading, to see these values ​​as positive, but historically they were signs of decay, as at the height of the Roman Empire or at the end of the Middle Ages, the maladjustment of social morals was clear.

However, in all these times, there have always been political, intellectual and social reactions to this decadence, and with that, history walked and some problems were solved, totally or partially, for example, the Roman Empire died little by little with the liberation of the colonies, already the period of liberalism and anthropocentrism at the end of the Middle Ages, gave rise to economic liberalism that led to the construction of new colonies in Africa and America and with this new forms of political and social decay extended until the French Revolution, for example, and in the English case, the coexistence of the monarchy with the republic.

A new cycle of decadence opens in this second decade of the millennium, with a visible fall in social and moral values, where politics is not a separate case.

Thus appear men and women capable of fighting to revert the historical picture of decay, but without a deep analysis the picture is confused, while ideas could be propagated in smaller circles in previous periods, now they travel the world in a fraction of seconds and invade even closed countries, such as Iran (there is a revolt for women’s rights) and China (where the strict confinement because of Covid provokes protests), but the background is a social reorganization.

In a small colony of Judea, in a period of many false prophets and rebellions against the Roman Empire, there was a religious figure called John the Baptist, who challenged the powers and governors, Herodes feared him not because he had an army or because the people followed him, but for the harsh words he had.

The lessons of John the Baptist are valid for our time: straighten the paths and level the hills, that is, seek straight paths that help open minds and forces to social reorganization.

 

Folly and messy house

29 Nov

In addition to the war in Eastern Europe, a possible return of the pandemic, human common sense seems to be out of fashion, days are confusing, even the dates of the week and the end of the year, traditionally more festive and calm, seem to give in to an atmosphere of foolishness and protest, due to the sporting event that involves at least 32 nations: The World Cup.

Although the house is in disarray, all the political rage seems to have gone to football, in fact politics looks like football with organized supporters destabilizing social life and removing authorities from their status quo, the judge who lowers himself to the fool, the president who rebels with the power it represents, new land invasion movements and calls for more authoritarianism in the midst of an evident crisis of authority.

Although the fan threw the LGBTQIA+ flag on the lawn, he was also protesting the war in Ukraine and the oppression of Iranian women (see the picture).

The Cup already had a protest from an Islamic country that did not sing its own anthem, a fan who invaded the field to protest against gender inequality and even a request for the selection to be expelled from the World Cup, the player is injured and the fans themselves celebrates, finally, wisdom seems to be out of kilter.

After all, a sport is fun, it does involve passion, but it is only within its limits, and cultural diversity must also be respected, as well as the right to protest within the limits of the demonstration.

The important analysis is that none of these facts should be taken out of context, an isolated fact or just the manifestation of minority groups, the house is in disarray, there is something dark in the air.

There are isolated and muffled voices that ask for a return to the axis and the solution of problems that are serious, yes, but they cannot be solved with foolishness, a messy house requires care in tidying up every corner, cleaning every hidden object or left aside, and let that sport is what it is in essence, a peaceful way to compete and bring joy to balanced national hearts and sentiments.

 

 

New variant and covid 19 on the rise

28 Nov

Although the numbers are not the same as the peak of the pandemic, the upward trend in cases remains and a new concern emerges as a worrying factor.

According to the German Primate Center (DPX), the Leibniz Institute and the Friedrich Alexander Erlangen Nurbnerg University, the therapies currently approved to treat people at risk of developing severe cases of Covid-19 are also not effective against the viral variants that are in worldwide ascension, especially the underlining of }omicron BQ.1.1. on the rise worldwide.

Also the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) which regulates drugs in the United States as well as the European Medicines Agency (European EMA0, the previous vaccines do not work for this variant, new vaccines in tests are already being used, and as always there are already denialist theory circulating, and the excessive lockdown in China already generates a wave of protests.

What is at stake, as at the beginning of the pandemic, is the fall or rise, now with previous experience, of a new lethal wave over all of humanity, the picture promises to get worse if measures are not taken or if they are not accepted by already exhausted populations containment and preventive measures.

The number is not exaggerated, neither in the moving average in the number of cases, in Brazil in the range above 20 thousand daily cases, nor in the number of deaths, in Brazil less than a hundred (80 at the weekend). However, the rate remains (see the figure).

In addition, in the Brazilian case, the tumultuous transition and government, which generates a certain inertia in the health system, where costs are also high and, according to the elected government, very chaotic.

In the northern hemisphere it is winter and this worries even more, the inefficiency of preventive measures is also a concern, not to mention the aggravating factor of a war that undermines the energy sources necessary for heating environments and coping with the cold, especially in the region where the war does not give truce.

Everyone in the world, and especially in Brazil, is expected to show some sense from the authorities who are ultimately responsible for the health and lives of thousands of people at risk.

 

Changes in earth and sky

25 Nov

Little is analyzed about the great social changes in the history of the earth and in human life, the earth came long before human life, they also represented man’s vision of the universe and its mysteries, and thus there is a correspondence between earthly changes and their corresponding cosmogony , whether this is just a coincidence or divine providence depends on the cosmovision itself, but it has changed for sure.

Thus, the vision of the cosmos at the beginning of Classical Antiquity is as evident as the birth of the Greek polis and its consequences for the modern world, Aristarchus of Samos (310 BC – 230 BC) came to calculate the radius of the Earth long before the circus navigation ( Fernão de Magalhães 1512), and also at the end of the Middle Ages the Ptolemaic idea of ​​Geocentrism gave way to Copernican heliocentrism and the change from feudalism to modern liberalism can be linked to this change in astronomical vision.

In current times, initially Hubble and now James Webb have made man look to the ends of the universe and even a change in the modernity of relativity theory, black holes and wormholes show a universe in greater mutation than we expected, thousands of galaxies are born and die throughout the universe and our system is just a grain of sand.

Perhaps the great revolution is the change in the conception of time, we can look at the birth of the Universe (see our post on the divine locus) which may not be called eternity, but is more than a simple absolute dimension of time and space, and perhaps it is more than Einstein’s space-time dimension.

In the biblical path Adam and Eve appear at a time when man is already sedentary and no longer nomadic, since Cain was a farmer of the earth and Abel a shepherd of sheep, who knows, the death of Cain was the first land conflict of humanity, the It is certain that this fact is linked to a new sedentary worldview, just as Noah would correspond to a deluge, or perhaps a simple flood that occurred in the Arabian peninsula, since it is located below the Negro, where we can observe the narrow Bosphorus, the path of sea ​​between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea.

Thus, the time of Noah may have meant a geographical change, at least in that region of the planet that involved the transformation that took place further down between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, the cradle of Arab civilization, and if there is no historical record of Noah, there is of his descendants: the Semites, from his son Shem, who had populated the region.

Thus, when speaking of the transformations that heavens and earth would undergo, the biblical reading of Luke (Lk 24, 37-39): “The coming of the Son of Man will be like in the time of Noah. For in the days before the flood, people were running and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark. And they knew nothing until the flood came and swept them all away. So shall it be in the life of the Son of Man,” the second coming called the Parousia.

The great civilizational crisis will not have to be just a change in the social structure, but it will certainly accompany a physical change on the planet, since its environmental forces are running out.

 

 

 

Raphael and the World

24 Nov

Manuel Alegre is a contemporary Portuguese poet when he was a military man in the then colony of Angola, he participated in the first rebellion that tried to free Angola from the yoke of his country (he was arrested by the PIDE, Salazar police), he won several awards, including the Camões Prize in 2017, he wrote “Jornada da África” in 1989, “Alma” in 1995 and “The third Rose” in 1998, between others of course, but his book that we reference here is “Raphael” (in picture used in figure of its cover).

During his period of exile after his arrest, he lived in Algiers, which is why he will refer to Rafael in the novel as someone who lived under different pseudonyms, sometimes he feels Spanish, Portuguese or Algerian, but Manuel Alegre’s deepest feeling is of a citizen of the world, nameless and looking for references.

In the Book Rafael goes from house to house, from hotel to hotel, changes his name, lets his mustache grow, wears glasses without lenses, uses a passport in hotels where he hides his citizenship and another to travel, in each new document a name and a different profession, he is clandestine within himself, he has lost his references and his own personal identity, he already is and he is not, he does not use his first name, he has four or five pseudonyms that he prefers, whether he is French, Spanish or Algerian, he is alone, not in the proper sense, as a solitary literature might wish, but as a member of an international brigade, he feels solidarity with it.

Ser e não ser has already been written by William Shapespeare, but in Manuel Alegre it acquires a contemporary meaning, the citizen of the world in solidarity with all peoples, I make here a mystical incursion, which is not in your book and which I consider important, not to be is also part of Being when we are in solidarity with other peoples, customs and cultures, and in my case without losing our own, also the name of the archangel Raphael is significant for me, in Hebrew origin El is God and Rafa is healing, so Raphael has the meaning God heals, here in the sense of a socially and culturally sick world for not recognizing other values ​​and cultures.

I know 23 countries, 4 in Latin America, 19 in Europe, especially Spain and Italy because of my ancestry, and Portugal where I saw more clearly all the influence in Brazil, but I still feel Brazilian and today’s debut day of the national team in the World Cup around the world I will be with neighbors and friends cheering for the national team, without this meaning hatred or contempt for other peoples and cultures.