At the beginning of the 21st century, we are faced with terrorism. It is characterized by the murder of "innocent" people, that is, people who are in no way involved in the conflicts and oppositions that the perpetrators of the attacks claim to be fighting. The more the public can identify with the victims, the more emotionally charged they become. This leads to a "demonisation" of the perpetrators and exacerbates feelings of rejection or even exclusion among the Muslims and minorities concerned. Feelings that fuel the recruitment of new "terrorists" or "jihadist fighters", depending on the perspective chosen.. In many ways, the state of our society is surprising. Especially when compared with previous states and civilizations.
In the material field, in terms of techniques, no civilization has ever known such a development, such a mastery of matter, mechanics, electronics, such a debauchery of energy.
In the spiritual realm, the ambitions and speeches of politicians, conveyed by their hagiographers in the press and media, seem by comparison, of abject poverty. If one considers their degree of political awareness and consciousness with that of the moralists of the 17th century, it seems obvious that their understanding of the soul and human behaviour does not touch a single one of La Rochefoucuald's Maxims or La Bruyère's Characteristics. Not to mention Montaigne, Montesquieu or Tocqueville.
Asking why we have unconscious and uncultured "elites" means first asking: how?
And the how depends on education. The institution that improperly bears the name of National Education is not solely responsible for it. The values that are, or are supposed to be, the foundation of democracy and the republic: freedom, equality, fraternity, no longer hold sway in our societies. The terms still exist, but they have been emptied of their meaning, in the confusion of thoughts and speeches that reign in society as a whole. Each term implies a definition and these are not taught or known, even among the "leaders" who should be its defenders. This "definition" implies, as the meaning of the term suggests, setting limits. As far as freedom is concerned, these limits are expressed in known formulas: "Everyone's freedom ends where other people's freedom begins", on the one hand. The corollary of freedom being: Liability, defined by article 1382 of the Civil Code: "Any act of man, which causes damage to another, obliges the person through whose fault he has managed to repair it. "It must be clear to everyone that legislative logorrhoea has sufficiently concealed these principles so that they have become indistinguishable within the rules governing our society. That the restoration of the pre-eminence of these principles is indispensable, to give everyone a clear vision of their rights and obligations.
That equality and fraternity, which are indissolubly linked, are perfectly antinomic and incompatible with competition and competition, which are inculcated from school onwards and form the basis for the functioning of our societies. The fact that success and wealth have become admirable and misery and despicable destitution are only the most visible consequences. Without those who denounce these effects, seem to identify the causes.
And their foundations are in education. The school system now only provides education designed to train "employees", "salaried employees", instruments in the service of companies whose sole purpose is profit. The "growth" that consists in getting fatter and fatter, beyond obesity. Development" which destroys everything in its path, to the point of producing mountains of waste and polluting the planet, probably irreversibly. Providing, in fact, only education, an instruction made of disparate knowledge, in "economically" useful fields. Full heads" when what is needed is "well-made heads". Not to mention all those who are left behind on the road to educational success.
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No doubt the "Middle Ages" did not deserve the name "rebirth". Our materialistic, consumerist, mercantile, monetarist era deserves it more. It is obscurantist. It drowns spirituality in confusion and despises everything that has no monetary value. Malraux is said to have said "The 21st century will be religious or it will not be", or "The 21st century will be mystical or it will not be. "I rather think the 21st century will be spiritual or cataclysmic.
I am not the first to propose to abandon the "golden calf", to renounce "monetarism", the subject was already topical several thousand years ago. We are preparing our own deluge, no longer of water, but of garbage. I am probably not leading the way either. It is not religious or mystical. The way out of obscurantism through religion can only be through the path it has taken: violence, terrorism, war. Inevitably, the attempt at hegemony of one religion will lead to the opposition of other believers, which can only lead to "wars of religion", whose only certain consequences are misfortune, destruction and massacres.
The spirituality to which we must turn is therefore philosophical. Not that I think that we should establish a "government of philosophers", but that moral, civic and political awareness should be the basis of education. Rather, to move towards a "philosophical society", in the primary sense of a love of wisdom. That the most effective fight against obscurantism does not consist in teaching young people mathematics, physics and electronics, but in teaching them to think. That for this the masters I quoted at the beginning of this article, Rabelais or Boileau, are much better examples than those whose thinking prevails at present.
That contrary to what our leaders believe or would have us believe, they will not ensure safety or security through coercion and surveillance. La Rochefoucauld said: "Our mistrust justifies the deception of others. "and "The readiness to believe evil without examining it sufficiently is an effect of pride and laziness. We want to find guilty people; and we don't want to bother to examine the crimes. "These are lessons that our leaders seem not to have understood or learned.
Marc Albert CHAIGNEAU, Author of " De la révolution à l'inversion ", published by Edilivre.