We talked about Country Philosopher before (in two earlier posts at least, 1 and 2). We said how he is free from doubt and how his argumentations, often categorical and at times naïve, are however not deprived of interest and of this ancient fascination so hard to explain.
In the following passage, freely summarized and which will hopefully better clarify this point to our readers, Dario Bernazza – his real name – tells us how there is like a balance in our life.
When liabilities exceed the assets, our life is a failure. When the contrary occurs, our life is successful and happy. Simple. Categorical. This is Bernazza.
Let us try to understand.
[Dario Bernazza, Vivere alla massima espressione, Editrice Partenone - Luciano Bernazza & C - Roma 1989, pp. 12-22]
Life is such that we cannot avoid its offensive – bitterness and sufferings of all kinds. These are life’s liabilities.
Which are these liabilities?
Since our childhood we are exposed to numerous internal and external enemies.
“Among the internal enemies: ignorance, dishonesty, little respect for truth, selfishness, conceit, inclination to excess, worship of money, lechery, anger, sloth, unproductive envy, hate, lack of authentic affections, ennui, loneliness, excessive shyness, superficiality, lack of ambition, incorrect reasoning, intolerance, wrong pastimes, disregard for other people’s rights, wrong solutions, tendency to join the herd, undue submission, acquiescence towards the avoidable, pessimism, optimism … .”
“External enemies: to be born in a foolish family, lack of (or wrong) education, inadequate school teaching, bad company, incapability or dishonesty of politicians ruling us, difficulties of any kind, job-related worries and fatigue, lack of money, unfavorable unexpected events, diseases, all flaws and errors by others, wrong clichés, perverse temptations, evildoers of any kind … .”
This is only a partial list of our dreadful, obstinate, sometimes alluring, enemies – argues Dario Bernazza. They are responsible for our sufferings, namely our life liabilities.
In order to make our life advantageous it is necessary to oppose some adequate assets to those liabilities. It is obvious, says Bernazza.
But which can these assets be?
“They consists, naturally, in the sum of every pleasant moment, of every satisfaction and success that we are capable of attaining during our whole existence. If such sum is greater than that determined by our life offenses, or liabilities, it is ok. If it is instead lower, then it would be preferable not to have come into this world.
We must in fact be brave enough to honour truth – says Bernazza. Who can in fact say it is preferable to start a firm whose liabilities exceed the assets, instead of not starting it altogether? Only a fool can say that.”
[From which we infer that Bernazza is a non believer]
We must also consider – CP argues – that while these liabilities are spontaneously inflicted on us by life without any mercy, the assets are not given us as a gift, but we must earn them day by day, bit by bit.
And the only way to earn them is that of giving the best solution to the major problems of our life. If we can do this, we divert or soften life liabilities, or sometimes we can even eliminate some of them.
Bernazza then identifies 20 major problems we must necessarily solve in the best possible way in order to minimize life liabilities and live a fruitful life (or advantageous, as he says).
We will talk about that in a future post.