Monday, October 3, 2011

"So, you say you want a revolution?"

In this budding political season, in which it is very difficult for me not to be disheartened, I am reminded that my salvation and that of the world is not brought about through politics, electoral or ecclesial. We are always promised progress, a more glorious and prosperous future. This pseudo-promise (it is false because it cannot be realized, at least not by political and juridical means) prompted Luigi Giussani to ask, in whose hands would we entrust this promise, assuming for a moment these means could bring about the desired end?

It seems that regardless of our ideological and political pre-dispositions, we are content to entrust ourselves to the powerful, to "those who have the force and circumstances others do not. Those rich, who perhaps no longer rise to the top by the sweat of their brow, but are born with a certain shrewdness for the political life or the use of an inheritance" (The Religious Sense 78).

Due to this, as well as the rise of technocrat with all that entails, Giussani insisted "that there must be a revolution for the defense of what is human, and this revolution can only come about under the banner of religiosity. It must be authentically religious, and therefore, with authentic Christians on the front lines" (79).

John O'Donohue

One such person was John O'Donohue, who wrote:
While our [Western] culture is all gloss and pace on the outside, within it is too often haunted and lost. The commercial edge of so-called "progress" has cut away a huge region of human tissue and webbing that held us in communion with one another. We have fallen out of belonging
For Christians, especially Catholic Christians, we become, as Pope Benedict noted in his homily in Germany the Sunday before last:
The Lord concludes his parable with harsh words: “Truly, the tax collectors and the harlots go into the Kingdom of God before you. For John came to you in the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the harlots believed him, and even when you saw it, you did not afterward repent and believe him” (Mt 21:32). Translated into the language of our time, this statement might sound something like this: agnostics, who are constantly exercised by the question of God, those who long for a pure heart but suffer on account of our sin, are closer to the Kingdom of God than believers whose life of faith is “routine” and who regard the Church merely as an institution, without letting their hearts be touched by faith

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