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A Program of Spiritual Formation for Candidates to the Priesthood

The Lay Monastic Community of Caryana






(The Romance of the Non-existing Future)

Our era is marked by a special attraction for the romance of a non-existing future. It is a psychological fallacy wherewith man refuses to understand what is happening in the present and seeks relief in the much-easier thoughts of the future. . .since the future is non-existent. Man, sort of, forgets his father and grandfather in his concern to map out the life of his grandson. We refuse to remember the dead; we worry of the unborn. The novels and films about the future excite us more than those of the past.

Well, there is a charm in the sight of inter-galactic battles that have not happened; only horror for  battles that had been fought in the soils of Europe and Asia. We look up rather to the man ahead of his time  and never to a man behind his time.

Yet this cult of the future is a perversity that shows the weakness and cowardice of our age. Psychologists call it flight into fantasy. The ugliness of modern armaments is that they had been made for a war to be fought in the future. A realist looks and learns from the past; a dreamer looks at the future. Inventors solve problems of the past; politicians promise bridges to the future or something like the year 2004.  

The future does not exist. And man rushes towards the future because of his fear of the past, both past evils and past good. He fears the evils of the past and the good that could solve those evils. So, man, as from the beginning, has not learned from his past mistakes, i.e. from history. He rejects the evils of the past. But he also rejects the good of the past because it demands too much from him; the virtues are unbearable, the faiths are untenable, the heroisms are inimitable.

The future, as in all psychosis, is a refuge for one's inability to imitate the heroes or even the common men of the past. The future is Erehwon, nowhere, unreality. Man keeps on inventing new ideas because he is afraid to try the old ones; the old ones are too demanding. Modern man is too weak for those.

All men who contributed to the future were those with their eyes in the past. The Renaissance that modernized Europe was a return to the past. And the True Great Catholic Reformation looked back to Patristic writings. Looking towards the future is an imbecility called Nirvana.

Europe is today aiming at a United Europe. But everything they are doing is leading to a divided Europe. They refuse to look back and see that, once upon a time, Europe was indeed united. . ..under the Catholic Church. but nobody wants to try that again; it is too demanding to be a good Catholic. Too much self-denial is involved. So, they look to the future. And in their futuristic drive, they will never try the past, the only time it really worked.

What is wrong with man's thinking? He thinks whatever is past is impossible. Man today lives by slogans like, "You cannot put the clock back." The truth is that you can. Try it. Anything constructed by man, like a clock or society, can be reconstructed on past plans. And, for the Catholic Church, the only way forward is to look back. . .at the golden age of Catholicism, the Patristic age.








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