Welcome Maratona

Abandon hope is written over that gloomy entrance. Yes, the huge problem still exists. Small hearts understand each other, they have small problems; but big hearts have big problems, just as great minds have to address unsolvable problems. The bigger the issue, the more difficult the solution. No, the comedy does not end divinely, Dante’s task is not fulfilled with Heaven. Now it’s time to put things in practice. What can we do?

Of course, we cannot turn a blind eye to all the good and beautiful things out there, we cannot lose hope. If we blow this tragic, and for many dramatic, moment out of proportion, it will give rise to a lifeless sadness that only nurtures submission. In that case, yes, we would find ourselves defenceless as we watch catastrophe draw nearer.

We have the ability to choose. We can regress, insistent pessimists do not contribute to a better world, convinced that bad things will get worse; yet they are often considered to be more intelligent than optimists and manage to convert others with their relentless demeaning of everyone and everything, continuously planting seeds of doubt and senses of guilt, spreading mistrust and perplexity. All too often, it is history that teaches us this; it is a lack of awareness, amplified ignorance, that creates problems and causes harm. Nihil sub sole novi, nothing new under the sun: those who claim to have gathered the right opinions on complex topics from tweets, high-impact images or, at the most, from a newspaper or by watching a single local news bulletin, will never be able to escape from their incredibly limited and pessimistic world. Letting out a stream of invective verbally and on social media won't help anyone to improve their lives.

Humans are obliged to maintain their commitment to grow, inside and out, without allowing themselves to get caught up in that continuous sense of fear. We can educate ourselves to see all the beautiful things, we can train our eyes to be astounded by the first gentians in the Dolomites, by these stunning peaks that couldn’t care less about our daily dilemmas. We can learn from the words of the Pope, which are equally as beautiful. It may well be true that humans do not survive in the same way as many other species that are disappearing at our hands, but we must believe in the ability to be flexible. Human talent, our thirst for knowledge, our ability to react quickly and to find solutions to problems that first appear unsolvable: all these skills show us that we can achieve a lot. We can and must make plans, move forward, looking towards the future; we can ensure our actions are proactive.

The passes to climb are steep and difficult, but the best way to tackle them is not to focus on the pain and fatigue, but rather on how healthy it is to cycle along, enjoying every single movement of the pedals and all the beauty that surrounds us. We are constantly surrounded by life’s challenges; it is a job that is never done. We shouldn't give too much importance to those who believe that science will save us, nor to those who believe in everything that goes badly. The world's driving force will be the open-minded people, and I am one of them.

michil costa

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