Hello 2020

Publish date 21-03-2021

by Max Laudadio

You know what I'm telling you? I wish people didn't think so. He keeps repeating that the year 2020 must be canceled as if it were a championship won by cheating at the game, even someone adds that it was the evil of all their evils. Is absurd. And now I am quite certain that it is.
A few days ago Don Silvano came to see me, my priest friend who, as you may know, I consider to have been the armed wing of the good Lord when he decided the path of my conversion. And as usual, our chat was engaging, full of reflections, sentiments, planning. This time, however, in the words of the lively priest I breathed something more, which made me euphoric.

After about an hour of continuous exchanges, the eighty-year-old priest left in fourth place, and did not seem to have returned from a month of isolation for having caught Covid.
The reflection focused on pain, death, suffering, personal limitations, as well as on fear of an unpredictable situation, but it had an unexpected ending when he said that, for all these reasons, a year like the one just passed it had to be remembered very well. And it had to be done because every time we felt omnipotent, our ego would be forced to apologize.

Don Silvano stressed that the feeling of precariousness we are experiencing should be transformed into petrol to fuel the fire of our inner change, and should force us to review the priorities of our life; to change the wrong habits, to abandon the most extreme beliefs and part of our useless certainties, and perhaps also many of our future projects. And to do that, we should start asking ourselves four simple questions: What does it mean to listen with the heart? What have we missed? Where could we have done more? Where do we find the strength of forgiveness and understanding? Then, we should be able to answer each other honestly, with conscience and in full freedom.
The real restart, however, will still take place when we understand that we were not born to live alone.
Don Silvano's simple, but logical statements might seem very obvious but in reality they are not at all, because they are the prerequisite of something very demanding to face.
Being able to ask the questions that the don has listed as if they came from the shopping list is apparently not convenient, because doubts, thoughts, feelings of guilt arise, and it is evident that not everyone is predisposed to face such a deep inner journey. It becomes easier to trivialize the topic, making it for a select few and demonizing 2020 was the result of a spell, but without in the least realizing what we are depriving ourselves of and the wonder that could ensue.

As a very enamored dreamer, when Don Silvano left, I found myself imagining the beauty generated by the joint action of millions and millions of people who had only the merit of having had the courage to answer in truth to the four simple questions of my dear friend, and it was like confirming that there is no other way than that of the soul to rekindle hope, the true one.
For days these questions have prevailed in my thoughts and for days I hope they are, or will become, for many others. And when I placed them at the top of my list of good intentions, I decided that they were not to be postponed until the next year but asked for my immediate commitment, without excuses and without fear.

Max Laudadio
NP January 2021

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