A Week for the Good Life

Under the Patronage of the Pontifical Council for Culture

Fr Mascarenhas shares his wisdom

The “Settimana del Buon Vivere” that is the “Week of Good Living” has again taken place at Forli, North Italy with two moments obtaining the patronage of the Pontifical Council for Culture.

An opening Round Table was held Forlì, 26 September 2012 – Museum of San Domenico, Refectory on “The (anti)economy of culture or culture as development of the economy?”, with the participation of Monsignor Franco PERAZZOLO (Official of the Pontifical Council for Culture) Enrico MENDUNI (Writer) Gabriele LAVIA (Actor and Theatre Director) Piergiuseppe DOLCINI (Banker) Roberto BALZANI (Mayor of Forlì and Historian), under the moderation of Francesca PARISINI (Journalist, La Repubblica).

The exchange of ideas, which was much appreciated by the many people present, can be synthesised in just a few lines: life can become meaningful if it goes in the opposite direction to the way in which the world has been chasing financial interests and profits and engaged in an unbounded acceleration to a sort of economic integralism. If profit, as Schiller admonished, "is the great idol of our time (das große Idol der Zeit), at which all forces serve and all talents must pay homage", then the centrality of the human person is the most efficacious act, not least in how it reveals each person's identity, which a human community can fulfil to interrupt the circuit of egoistic gain and personal profit which excludes the common good. In fact, the objective of money and knowledge should not be the conquest and the possession, but the suspension of their tyranny, or the quest for the meaning of being.

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The Director of the event

The final day was characterized by three events of great importance: In the morning, Cardinal Tarcisio BERTONE, Secretary of State of His Holiness blessed the pilgrims for the pilgrimage of via dei Romei, a symbol of the inter-Christian dialogue between Catholics and Lutherans. In the evening, the play “Suoni e danze per un viaggio nel mondo di Rumi” based on the works of the “Dante” of Persia, the poet Jelaluddin Rumi was presented at a Press Conference. Mons. Franco PERAZZOLO from the Pontifical Council for Culture participated in the Press conference along with Alessandro GIUPPONI (Director) Shariar ALEMI (Producer) Alessandra INFASCELLI (Producer) Yahya Sergio YAHE PALLAVICINI (Vice-President and Imam of the CO.RE.IS -Comunità Religiosa Islamica Italiana.) Mons. Perazzolo concluded his intervention regaling the audience with Rumi’s celebrated verse: “You've no idea how hard I've looked for a gift to bring You. Nothing seemed right. What's the point of bringing gold to the gold mine, or water to the Ocean. Everything I came up with was like taking spices to the Orient. It's no good giving my heart and my soul because you already have these. So- I've brought you a mirror. Look at yourself and remember me.”

Later in the evening, Fr. Theodore MACARENHAS of the Pontifical Council for Culture participated in a Round-Table conference along with  Enzo BIANCHI (Prior of the Monastic Community of  Bose) Moni OVADIA (Journalist and Writer) Serigne Mame MOR MBACKE (Spiritual Head of the Mourides - Senegal) and Yahya Sergio YAHE PALLAVICINI. Giuliano GIUBILEI (President of Festival delle Nazioni and Vice-director of Tg3 RAI) moderated this concluding event, a glittering and exhilarating conclusion the Week of Good Living, the Round Table Conference on the theme, “The Common Good as a Paradigm of Cohesion between Peoples.” Organized by the Legacoop Forlì-Cesena, Istituto Romagnolo di Ricovero e Cura a Carattere Scientifico (IRCCS-IRST), and the Lega Italiana per la Lotta contro i Tumori (LILT)  the event had Fr. Mascarenhas stressing the need of a dialogue based on reciprocal and mutual respect quoted Mahatma Gandhi, “"I do not want my house to be walled in on all sides and my windows to be stuffed. I want the cultures of all the lands to be blown about my house as freely as possible. But I refuse to be blown off my feet by any. I refuse to live in other people's houses as an interloper, a beggar or a slave." 

The week-long event which took off on 24 September brought together personalities from different cultures and people from all walks of life. The Pontifical Council for Culture besides patronizing the event also had its representatives, Mons. Franco PERAZZOLO and Fr. Theodore MASCARENHAS.

Lega-Coop Forlì-Cesena along with the other organizers and specially the conceiver of the project Ms Monica FANTINI deserve kudos for a job well done and for a project that will bring great fruits in cultural history of humanity.