The Human Person: A State of Emergency. John Waters on Meeting’s title
If you don’t rediscover your relationship with the Mistery, life gets unbearable
“I feel loved by Christ. Without this love, life would be unbearable. “John Waters talks about his experience, comparing it with the title of the 34th Meeting for Friendship among Peoples: ‘The Human Person: A State of Emergency’. He tells his life, his sufferings, his dependency on alcohol and his redemption within the rediscovery of the beauty of reality in the relationship with the Mystery. Emilia Guarnieri, President of the Foundation Meeting for Friendship among Peoples, opens the central meeting this week, scheduled at 5 p.m. in Auditorium – D5 space – and introduces the editor of The Irish Time and Irish writer. He is entrusted with the task of getting to the bottom of the question of freedom and humanity of each. “Letting ourselves be provoked – draws Emilia Guarnieri – because man is always defined by a positive cry.”
John Waters talks about a humanity that has given up on God, presuming to be able to do everything by itself. He recalls that Pope Benedict XVI, as a guest of the Bundestag in Berlin, spoke of the “bunker that man has built for himself to live.” “A bunker with no windows – says Waters – which operates according to the logic of positivism. Everything must be provable, verifiable. There is no room for mystery. “This bunker exists in everyday life, education, politics, popular culture, myth. In the bunker, man feels safe. “The bunker eliminates the surprise – continued the speaker – shutting out the uncomfortable mysteries of existence. We believe we are the masters of our lives and our destinies. In the bunker man pretends not to be a creature, but the master of himself. ”
However, mankind’s history shows that life needs more than what it is able to imagine or create in order to sustain itself. In man’s heart there is the need to keep a look on the infinite, the eternal. All that man can create is only false hopes sustaining him for a while and then dissolving, leaving him frantically trying to grab the next hope. For this reason, in achieving mastery over reality, the modern man has tried to stifle his own spirit.
“Let’s imagine that the destruction of the sacred in our culture is a function of the path of time – Waters says – but the problem of faith in modern culture is not due to a lack of reasonable evidence, but the inability to use the available facts to strengthen the most of human reason and to destroy religion. “Therefore, it is much more serious than the destruction of a scaffold moral or cultural identity. Its consequence is the loss of the ability to live with mystery, to look at the world with amazement,” but above all to maintain the vision that allows the human person to live fully, to hope and yearning for total human destiny. ”
That is what the human person’ state of emergency which Meeting put at the center of reflection and discussion: “Man has lazily parked God in a corner – says Waters – he has trivialized him. And in so doing we put aside the question of our destiny. “The question of God does not seem to be relevant anymore because is not about real life. Instead, the experience of the journalist and writer is different: “The addiction to alcohol and the effort to get out of it made me aware of the fact that I was created, I was addicted, that I had not been done by myself; that I am mortal, but my desire is infinite. And I met people who had done a similar trip and they told me: the answer to your question is God. ”
Man must learn to get out of the bunker, but above all he must experience familiarity with Christ within the love to himself and to others in everyday life, in the instant. He must regain a never-ending hunger for life and for living. “Just for the fact of being here, somehow, I feel loved – he admits Waters – I’ve had this feeling all my life, but I was not aware of it until a short time ago. I took this for granted or I used to deal with this feeling of serenity and peace that I was given as a natural phenomenon. I had an understanding of the love of God, but as something abstract, distant. Without this sense of love which I speak of, life would be unbearable and nothing in the bunker would be able to protect me”