Culture Magazine

Bruno Latour on Laudato Si! – " The Immense Cry Channelled by Pope Francis"

By Bbenzon @bbenzon
The first two paragraphs, as translated by Stephen Muecke:
The audacity of the Laudato Si! encyclical is equalled only by the multiple efforts to deaden as much as possible its message and effects. Once again, ecological questions, as soon as they are introduced into the regular course of our familiar thought patterns, modify from top to bottom the attitudes of all the protagonists. ‘How can a Pope dare to speak of ecology?’ ask both the faithful who expect an encyclical either to reinforce a doctrinal matter or clarify some moral question, and the indifferent who have never touched an encyclical in their lives, nor expected anything at all from the magisterium of the church. Many of the faithful block their ears so as not to hear the voice calling for radical conversion (§-114. “All of this shows the urgent need for us to move forward in a bold cultural revolution”) while the indifferent prick up their ears to listen to the voice of someone who they don’t for a second imagine could be ‘on their side’ (§-145. “The imposition of a dominant lifestyle linked to a single form of production can be just as harmful as the altering of ecosystems.”)
Like all major religious or political texts, Laudato Si! requires a realignment of all established positions and requires one to take a stand in the midst of battles that one did not know to be so violent, nor that the Church could play a part in them. The church has long been alienated from political, moral or intellectual innovation, and until now limited to a more or less strict preservation of the ‘treasure of faith’ and to bringing in the moral police. And now it is sending a message putting it at the heart of the most vital arguments as if it were still present in history. What? Has the Pope written a new Communist Party Manifesto? Some are scandalized, others rejoice. Everyone is surprised. We must shut this down immediately! The Vatican belongs to the past, it can’t be in the present…
Find the rest at 

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog