Looking out for surrogates

5 02

A surprisingly modern dissertation, in this article, published in the «Fides» magazine in 1960, Giordani analyses the situation of the family, and particularly of the youth…

The youth are prone to heroism. But in a materialistically equipped society there is a lack of ideals and opportunities. And so they start looking for surrogates, far from home and the law. These kids no longer nurture themselves with the Gospel, but live on literature that exalts robbery, early sex, and violence, and literature that reduces all to profits, technicality, and productivity.
We come to wonder: is it only the modern, dynamic and mechanistic lifestyle that provokes evasion and detachment in the boys and girls of our times or are there other causes?
A sense of detachment of sons from their parents is normal and it has always been so.  Today the features and fears of this fact conforms to the times we are in: and the times, of course with sports, the radio, literature, cinema, and travels, distract them, and physically lead them away from the home, more so today than in the feudal eras…
However, the serious phenomena of the disintegration of solidity, harmony and unity of the family, that distinguished our time does exist.

Certainly today, we see the powerful influence of machines and sports. Dialogue between parents and sons often seem to come about in two different and unknown languages. And the kids often tend to close themselves up or limit themselves to communicating with their peers.
But other factors come into play. Even in the good schools they hear from the excellent teachers, interpretations of events and people that do not always coincide with the interpretation of their dads and mums: thus the discussions, controversies or gaps of silence, at home.  Then comes politics with its rage and disputes that arouse dislike and too often, introduce into the same family nucleus a controversy that easily becomes wrath and ends up in dividing the family. Besides politics, the many things happening outside provide a contrast – a real competition – between external events and education received at home.


But the greater impulse to evasion and detachments, whenever or wherever it occurs, lies in the home itself: and is the onset of grievance. The family bond is live. And the same goes for the entire society. As on the outside, if not determined by love, civil coexistence ends up in an aggregation of individuals, perhaps all gathered together but not united. Likewise on the inside, if love is missing, the family coexistence is held together only by a culinary and residential factor, or by fear and convenience.

And love is increasingly valued when it becomes charity: on a supernatural level. If in this type of love the bond of perfection fades, there is an onset of delusion, and it fosters division which is degradation.
Detachment may be nurtured by subconscious materialism, and may be accompanied by religious practices: due to which mum and dad look like they are always assailed by economic problems and are projected into the future with projects and thirst for wealth. And so they ruin their life, the present moment, and the bonding with their sons, which is the real family life – and these parents, upon evading the reality of the home, seek imaginary things that they may never achieve.  The fever of pleasure, with the anxiety for profits and the related vice, separate them from God in heaven and from the family on earth. Vice necessarily divides.

These types of phenomena underline the urgency to recompose unity, with the sanctity of the family.  And it is recomposed and preserved – through a sole resource: a “supplement of love.”
Love educates towards love, that is, to service and the quest for the common good. 

Igino Giordani, «Fides», 1960, PP. 212-213

Published On: 03/02/2016Categories: Writings

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