Lack of commitment to the truth leaves words loose, profuse, invasive, instinctive and fanciful
Maybe you are like me: there are nights when, after a day of work, I can no longer hear a single word. “My God! There are too many words for one day!” I think, longing for some . There is research that has revealed the astonishing number of images we are subjected to every day. However, I have never heard that the number of words we are exposed to each day has been researched.
Words on TV, words on the Internet, in the newspaper, in magazines, in books, on the radio, in music, in supermarkets, on labels, on billboards, in bright bulletins about traffic, in politicians’ speeches, in preaching, in conversations! Words in Portuguese, words in English, words in the mysterious vocabulary of graffiti artists! Words in huge letters, in tiny spelling! Words spoken, shouted, whispered, sung! Simple and erudite words, well pronounced and unintelligible, words broken, stretched and echoed.
Hundreds, thousands of words in one day! And look, it’s a normal day, without retreats, without studies, without special research. We are subjected, in fact, to a bombardment of words in far greater numbers than we could bear and remain mentally healthy.
Maybe, like me, you, lost in so many words, miss people, yes, people, people, those who are a lot and say little, who look deep into our hearts and give a smile. Those humble ones who realize that we exist and that they and their needs are not the center of our lives. Those tiny and still tender ones, who curl up in our arms and fall asleep, forgetting to take care of themselves. Others are already old and hardened, who rely on us to climb the smallest step, no longer able to take care of themselves.
Perhaps, like me, you also feel that there are too many words and too few people.
You may wonder why this is so, since word and person should always come together. That’s right… They should, but they’re not coming! There is, on the contrary, an increasing distance between word and person. You say what you want to imply and not what you are. There is a lot of talk about themselves and very little about themselves. Words are wasted for nothing, in a real waste, knowing that they are always renewed and recreated, in an infinite stock, without commitment to the truth that limits and domesticates them. Who knows, maybe that’s the problem.
Lack of commitment to the truth
Lack of commitment to the truth leaves words loose, profuse, invasive, instinctive and fanciful. AND! That must be it, at least in part. Without the truth to shepherd it, the flock of words runs away, going crazy, invades the cities, the minds, the air. Without the moral commitment to restrict them, they become as if autonomous, detached from the people who utter them, libertine, indomitable, voluptuous. Omnipotent and immature, they take lives for themselves and are responsible for serving lies, hiding people, dissimulating evil deeds, stifle thoughts, making up desires, distorting facts. The result is what we see: too many words, too few people. Unreliable information from unknown people. Tyrannical, domineering words, masters of slaves who seem to believe in what they seem to say, to the point that neither masters nor slaves are sure of anything anymore. Words that enslave people. People who think they enslave words without realizing that, in fact, they are enslaved by them!
Maybe, like me, you really miss coherence. I miss immersing myself in the Word, which is Person and which is Truth. Longing for the power to generate life from that Word in which you were created. I miss hearing her call you by name. I miss feeling it pulsating in your past, your present, your future, along with the beating of your heart: “I love you! I love you! I love you!”.
Like me, who knows, you might miss a Word and a Person that are one thing, without division, without incoherence, without a mask, without death. Lack of the Person-Word that enters like a thin stiletto deep inside you and seizes your tumors. Lack of the Word-Person which, because it is Truth, frees and, because it frees, is life and gives life, is meaning and gives meaning, is the way and shows the way.
Like me, you certainly thirst to hear the sound of the Word spoken in the eternal heart of the Trinity, of the Person generated in the Word-Love of the Person who generates it, of the Word-Love-Person-Truth that, without needing to utter a sound, just is and Word is made by delivery. Thirst to contemplate the Person-Word who makes the delivery and acceptance of Love his secret to communicate so that we, enslaved by words in league with untruth, may be freed.
Ours can be satiated; this longing of ours can be met; our need, filled. From our hands, for the price of almost nothing, the Word-Person can pass into our hearts, entirely coherent, the Word-Truth, entirely liberating, because entirely Love. The Word became people, the Person became man, the Truth was revealed and, clothed in words, it was placed within our reach, it was revealed for generations, it was divided into books, it was placed on store shelves, accessible to all. It was translated into everyone’s language, it was digitized, it was publicized, it was filmed, photographed, reproduced. The Word-Person-Truth-Love, the one that never tires of loving, that never tires of freeing, is at our disposal. Offered. Delivered. Coming to His own. Let us welcome it. Let us rest in the Peace of the One Word.
Maria Emmir Nogueira
Co-founder of the Shalom Catholic Community