A Land of Light

Sooner or later every teacher makes himself or herself these questions: what is the culture I want to leave to my students? What is the nation I want to leave to my students? What is the society I want to leave to my students? What is the world I want them to grow up into, and how I can make that world possible?

Actually, this is a question that every citizen must make himself at some point in his life: what is the kind of culture I want to create? What is the kind of nation I want to create? What is the kind of society I want to create? What is the kind of humanity I want to create? How I can make them possible?

As had happened before, I can’t answer these questions without answering as a Christian, not just as a teacher and as a citizen.

Fist question: what is the kind of culture I want to create?

I want to create a culture of life.

What is a culture of life? Let’s remember…

A culture of life is a culture where all life is embraced, where all the human rights of everyone are recognized, where everyone is seen according to the image and likeness to God, where everyone is unconditionally embraced as a human being. I mean: everyone.

If you see carefully, you may realize that there is a tendency of humanizing only those who are according to certain ideologies. For example: if you are a person whose ideological vision is leftist, you will probably be used recognize as human beings only those who are convenient to your vision: LGBT people, migrants, Muslims, black people… Another example: if you are a person whose ideological vision is rightist, you will probably be used to recognize as human beings only those who are convenient to your vision: Christians, the unborn, pro-gun people, conservatives… So on.
Let’s ask ourselves this simple question: in what moment of history we got used to recognizing as human beings only those who are like us, those who are convenient to our ideological vision, those who agree with us?

That’s what Hitler did, dear brother and sister. Exactly that.

Usually, when people hear about “culture of life” it is understood as a “pro-life” culture in the sense of defending the unborn.

Nope, that is not exactly what I am talking about.

A culture of life is a culture that embraces every person as a human being, no matter what. If you have a human DNA (no matter if you have an extra chromosome), you are a human being, unconditionally entitled to human rights, unconditionally entitled to be respected, unconditionally entitled to a dignity that only human beings have. That is a culture of life. Of course, a culture of life includes recognizing the unborn as human beings, including respecting their human rights, but is far broader: a culture of life embraces all as human beings. Do you remember all those examples I mentioned? Yes: LGBT people, migrants, Muslims, black people, Christians, the unborn, pro-gun people, conservatives… All of them are human beings, no matter what. A culture of life affirms that no matter what is the ideological vision, nor any other factor, a human being is a human being. Everyone’s dignity is unconditionally affirmed from the moment of conception until the natural death, with all the consequences that it may mean.

When you get used to humanizing only those who are convenient to your ideology, that is an ideological culture. As I said, that was what Hitler did with macabre efficiency. That what we want to become as a culture, a dehumanizing culture, like Nazism was? I know that people from both left and right are very fond of calling “Hitler” each other… That’s not funny, not at all. There must be a stop to this kind of behavior: dehumanizing those who are not like you, who don’t agree with you, who do not have your ideological vision. Our human identity can’t depend on ideologies: we are human beings, no matter what, and that must always be respected, even in those people who commit crimes.

There is a very, very short distance between an ideological culture and social abortion: to abort those who are not convenient to the ideology. Holocaust, Apartheid, slavery, abortion… there are many tragic examples of where an ideological culture leads.

Make yourself these question: do I see everyone as a human being and respect everyone as a human being, unconditionally, or I only affirm those who are convenient to my ideological vision? Do I affirm everyone’s human rights, or only the human rights of those who are like me, who think like me, who are convenient to my ideological vision? What kind of culture do I want to create?

Answer them yourself, in conscience. I am quite clear in my answer: I firmly believe in a culture of life, and here I am, giving my own life for creating it.

Second question: what is the kind of nation I want to create?

I want to create a nation of Love that grows in communion.

I am not talking about any kind of Love. I am talking about the way God teaches us to love: a Love that grows in communion, a Love that helps the other to grow as the best person he can be, as the person he is called to be.

A nation of Love that grows in communion is a nation where everyone can grow and become the person who is called by God to be, where everyone can grow until becoming the best person he can be. This means that the growth that doesn’t help everyone to grow as we are all called to be––human beings that grow in communion–– until becoming the best person we can be… is not truly human growth. We must seek to help to grow every one. The growth that only helps to grow those who are convenient to your ideological vision, those who think like you, those who are like you… is not growth, is dehumanizing propaganda that destroys our nation and our culture… and eventually, humanity itself.

Our nation is called to be greater than that. We are all called to be greater than becoming ideological propaganda. We are all called serve our nation by becoming our best, by giving our best, by loving everyone as God does, by growing in communion as God calls every human being to grow. Of course, in order to create a nation of love that grows in communion, you also need to create a culture of life that embraces everyone as human beings.

Make yourself these questions: do I help everyone to become who they are called to be, to become the best person they can be, or I only help those who are convenient to my ideological vision? Do I affirm everyone’s growth in communion, or only the growth of those who are like me, who think like me, who are convenient to my ideological vision? What kind of nation do I want to create?

Answer them yourself, in conscience. I am quite clear in my answer: I firmly believe in a nation of Love that grows in communion, and here I am, giving my own life for creating it, for helping to grow everyone as God does, like rain that falls for all.

Third question: What is the kind of society I want to create?

I want to create a democratic society.

Usually, a “democratic society” is usually understood as a society where their citizens can choose those who govern them.

For me, a democratic society is not only a society where you can choose those who govern you. Of course, being a democratic society includes being able to choose those who govern you, including your president––something Puerto Ricans can’t do––, but for me is something far broader than that.

For me, a democratic society is a social order centered in the person: in helping to be, to do, to grow and to radiate every citizen as a human being. This requires two very important factors.

The first factor required for a democratic society is the correct conception of the person. If a society conceived the person as an ideological object, only promoting those aspects of the personal formation that are convenient to the own ideology, or only promoting the conception of the personal formation in the way that is convenient to a certain ideology, the conception of the person is corrupt, and so the society will be corrupt also. For achieving a democratic society is imperative to achieve a conception of the personal formation that embraces everyone as a human being. Without this, there is no democratic society possible.

The second factor required for a democratic society is something extremely related to the first factor: human rights. A society where human rights are not affirmed unconditionally there is no democracy possible. A society where dehumanization is allowed cannot be a democratic society. Of course, in order to create a democratic society, you need to create a nation of Love that grows in communion and a culture of life that embraces everyone as a human being.

Make yourself these questions: do I help everyone to be, to do, to grow and to radiate unconditionally, or I only help those who are convenient to my ideological vision? Do I affirm a society centered in the person, or a society centered in ideologies, a society that doesn’t conceive the personal formation correctly and that doesn’t affirm human rights unconditionally? What kind of society do I want to create?

Answer them yourself, in conscience. I am quite clear in my answer: I firmly believe in a democratic society, and here I am, giving my own life for creating it, like breathing air that is given to everyone unconditionally.

Fourth question: what is the kind of humanity I want to create?

I want to create a world of fraternity. I want to create a world where everyone can grow as a brother and a sister, a world where everyone can grow as part of the human family, where everyone can grow with dignity, a world where everyone can be seen as a gift of God that we are all called to help to thrive, a world of peace where any kind of dehumanization––discrimination, illiteracy, inequality, poverty–– is fought passionately.

Of course, in order to create a world of fraternity, you need also to create a democratic society, a nation of Love that grows in communion and a culture of life that embraces everyone as a human being. This is a whole revolution of Love!

Make yourself these questions: do I see everyone as a brother and a sister, or I only see as a brother and a sister a few, those who are convenient to my ideological vision, those who I consider “my own”? Do I affirm a fraternal world, a world where everyone is part of the human family? What kind of world do I want to create?

Answer them yourself, in conscience. I am quite clear in my answer: I firmly believe in a fraternal world, and here I am, giving my own life for creating it, like creating a land of light

So, finally, here comes the last question…

How I can make this possible? How I can create a culture of life, a nation of Love that grows in communion, a democratic society, a fraternal world?

I just said the answer: I am making them possible through creating a land of light.

What I mean with “creating a land of light”?

To understand this, you need to see every human being as a ray of light that comes from God’s Love, and you need to see yourself as a star of heaven called to radiate God’s Love in a unique way.

A land of light is a land where every human being shines like a star. Each star gives a light that only that person can give, and as long as each star gives the light that is called to radiate, every culture, every nation, every society, the whole world… becomes a land of light. Of course, we can’t radiate on our own. We need to help each other radiate the light that God’s Love gives us, until becoming together the humanity that we are called to be, the human family we are called to be, the stars of heaven we are called to be. I truly believe that seeing the unity of the whole humanity as a constellation of stars, each one shining a unique light, is a very beautiful and vivid vision of what we are called to be as humanity. We are not called to shine by our own: we are called to shine together, as brothers and sisters that see each other with the loving gaze of God’s light and that radiate together as God’s family, helping every human being to grow as He does.

We have a choice, right here, right now: to become the culture of life we are called to be, to become the nation of Love we are called to be, to become the democratic society we are called to be, to become the fraternal world we are called to be… to become the land of light we are called to be. We have the choice of not allowing any kind dehumanization to destroy our culture, our nation, our society, our humanity…

For me, that choice means to radiate God’s Love unconditionally, right here, right now. I am creating a land of light with the radiation of God’s Love to my culture, to my nation, to my society, to my humanity… like an incarnated theology of light.

Make yourself these questions: do I see in everyone a light that I am called to help to radiate, or I only see a light in those who are convenient to my ideological vision, those who I consider “my own”? Do I affirm a land of light, a land where everyone is called to shine a unique light? What kind of humanity do I want to create?

Answer these yourself, in conscience. I am quite clear in my answer: I firmly believe in a land of light, and here I am, giving my own life for creating it, like creating a human constellation where everyone can shine and give the unique light that is called to give to our humanity.

So, this is the culture I want to leave to my students, the kind of culture I want to create: a culture of life. This is the nation I want to leave to my students, the kind of nation I want to create: a nation of Love that grows in communion. This is the society I want to leave to my students, the kind of society I want to create: a democratic society. This is the world I want my students to grow up into, the kind of world I want to create: a fraternal world. This is the humanity I want to give to my students, the kind of humanity I want to create: a land of light.

Have you ever asked yourself all these questions? Today is a great day to do so.

Let’s become the culture we are called to be and we will fire our nation.

Let’s become the nation we are called to be and we will fire our society.

Let’s become the society we are called to be and we will fire our world.

Let’s become the world we are called to be and we will become a land of light!

Let’s keep growing!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s