Sola Fide, Semper Fide (english poetry)

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Another (Sinelos) composition, as they are all I can write start-to-finish, these days. Roughly 1,300 men died building the Palace of Mafra, at the Time, a Convent and not a Palace. I thought it would be interesting to write something about it, as we do not know who they were, but we do know what they died for. A brief disclaimer: this poem does not quest to heat-seek why people believe, but rather, how they rationalised those beliefs, and how they served (and still serve) as firm utilities to dismiss very human emotions. Constructions, either metaphysical (Absolutes) or physical (A Convent), are not worthier arbiters of our lives than we are.

If you disagree, that is great! Let me know, as my thoughts may be (and probably are) incomplete, and I might come to agree with a firm argument. To live, is to learn.


JOHNNY

Hoje sou tudo no nada que sou, amanhã serei outro.

15 thoughts on “Sola Fide, Semper Fide (english poetry)

  1. This is brilliant, just fantastic!! The historical reference of the palace of Mafra, the depth, description… bravo!!! I am gonna read all your poetries in depth and leave review!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Tanya!, you are always so kind to me! I will find a way to repay you, I promise!
      Keep being your gentle, beautiful version of yourself that you’ve been presenting here, in my little corner. I’m sure you will enchant many in your path.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Well done. I enjoy the fact that it takes several readings and a little research for me to understand your work. This means I am learning something new. The theme of anonymous sacrifice is a powerful one, and you capture it well here.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Only after I’ve posted, did I consider the fact that not anyone may be familiar with the expression “Sola Fide”. It’s a common thing to run by in the Western World, but little anywhere else.
      That being said, I am the one that must thank you, for bearing exercise in the understanding of my writings. I never saw my work worthy of so much energy dedicated to it, so it means a lot to me. Thank you Zerk.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I hasten to add that I get what you were saying. It’s a powerful message. Church and State leaders have abused their powers of social contract to enslave the common man for their own personal wealth and dignitas.

      Still, having that phrase there opens up the murky waters of predestination which the Catholic Church isn’t guilty of, at least not yet anyway.

      Liked by 1 person

      • This wasn’t meant to tie directly to Catholicism. It is true that the Covent itself was Catholic, but the philosophical medium applied was similarly employed by Catholics as it was by literally any other institution of any other religion. “Sola Fide” was claimed by the Lutherans, yes, but the seed of that thought was planted way before by the likes of, say, Augustine of Hippo, who questioned this herd-like vision of faith as an ultimate justification. Lutherans surely used a short-cut to that by claiming the expression and philosophy behind it, but its false to assume they themselves originated the idea, they largely did not. We can trace back Sola Fide mentalities to even Christ himself.

        The overseers of Mafra’s construction surely weren’t familiar with the constructed philosophy, but they applied the same categorical footprints in their tyranny: we will not honour the dead that built this place with remembering their names, or presenting them within the structure, because this was built for God, in the solemn name of God; everyone else involved, dead or alive, was inconsequential. Why? Because collective faith is more important than individual will, thus, their deaths are hall-markedly justified by only mattering within the spectrum of faith.
        I do understand you though, the phrase carries a lot of baggage, I wasn’t smart in using it, that is completely my bad (in part because I love using Latin, I’m a sucker for Latin words)

        Like

      • We still celebrate a festival here every year, when our orthodox bishop was stuffed into a barrel and thrown into the ocean by Catholics, even though many of us have now become Catholic ourselves. Our books and records were burnt or censored because eastern orthodoxy was considered heretical by Rome… My community lost their history… But we also know that it was all a power play, by greedy men wearing robes and sailing caravels. I do not blame Catholicism or Portugal for what happened, but rather a few greedy and vile men of authority. (We do not like Vasco da Gama in my home state) Corruption is rampant in any social institution, religious or otherwise, the concept of blind faith used to wield power over people’s minds like a weapon. The same things happen in other social institutions as well. Opportunists take advantage of the system, until some Hero rises to challenge them. That’s when we get reformation and progress. Witness the rise of the Trumps et al, peddling impossible dreams to the masses, for the benefit of those 1% fellator podexes! (That’s about the extent of my Latin vocabulary) Empire was always built on the backs of Slaves, and the corresponding rise of the super elite. Punic wars brought Spanish slaves, and the foundation of a Roman Empire. These abuses of Nation and Religion are things that we will eventually evolve out of… It’s only a matter of time. Sorry for going all over the place with this. You’re dealing with many themes dear to my heart, and this comment box is a real pain to use on a phone!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I do not know how to accurately reply, as I do not know what home state you refer to! Perhaps Goa or Karnataka, since you mention Vasco da Gama.

        If you are from the U.S, I am not aware of Vasco’s influence there, if there was any. Maybe Northern Africa? The possibilities are endless, that man sailed everywhere, he was restless.

        You are correct! I wish my poetics could delve deeper into those things, but upon a certain point of sincerity, I’ve noticed that poetics take a more allegorical shape. It is either a limitation of my talent, or my execution, yet I’m sure time will tell.

        And again, you are always free to write anything, entire essays if you will! In Portugal (bad timing to use a Portuguese reference, I’m aware, haha), we say “Saber não ocupa o lugar.” roughly translating to “Knowledge doesn’t take any space away”, so I always welcome anything you are willing to share.

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      • Kerala 🙂 Though Goa was a good guess. Karnataka likes the man. He brought them chillies, vanilla and horses, as well as a military alliance, which the French continued later on.
        Aw, like I said, Portugal isn’t to blame for any of that… Only a few mediaeval kings, and some cardinals.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Ok first of all I will go point wise:
    1. The use of faded lines and its contrast with normal lines, something entirely new to me. But it works great.
    Specially when the concrete isnt there yet.
    2. A very humane work. The helplessness of mankind I could feel. But then it seemed you expressed the helplessness of time and everything, to a flow much bigger, a flow that might have some link to faith at most. Thus making the helplessness attributed sonehow to their owl believes.That was very sureal.
    3. One question : if cells think them too much as cells, mourn for cells dying more than they fear the organism’s death, kis that bad for the organism and cells alike, or not? What do you think?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you!
      The “faded lines” as you put them, are actually made using the “shadow” option. This poem was not composed by-hand — unlike most of my work — but only digitally, so all the faded lines are shadows casted by verses in the actual body of the poem. Interesting to play with, might have some good applications in the future.

      Cells do not think, and they are wired to die, as they do almost daily on any organic body. Some individual species do have cells which do not age nor die, and that is a natural anomaly, but entirely possible. But cells cannot themselves be self-aware of their death, or even their function. Or aware of anything really.

      What governs those fields of experience, in all animals and especially humans, actually consists mostly of electricity waving between neural cells. Neural cells are repositories of information, and the sharing of information is the action in which something new may truly be generated, like, say, awareness.

      If you are asking if one’s own understanding of impermanence may be detrimental to the overall state-of-mind, well — no. There is no other existence but an impermanent one, therefore, there is no verifiable experience of any person or brain-bearing species which is unaware of its own impermanence.
      Our cells are made to die, and so are we, and inasmuch as they do not care for such Death, neither do we. What humans generally fear isn’t Death itself as it is conceived, but rather, the possibility of great ineptitude with the time that we’re given, but that is my personal belief.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Johnny. I am sorry. I have been a bit distant from the blog recently for some reasons. I could not reply earlier.

        Thank you. Your answer did mean a lot. I was recently very disturbed, but something in your answer did give me some peace, well if not peace, atleast a co-minded pat on the shoulder. I am not able to fully explain.

        Its not the death, but dying without being of any or much worth. Thus living a life that haunts us through its futility. The lack of meaning, of fulfilment. You are right. That is what haunts us. Maybe to some extent rightly so.
        Thanks again.

        Like

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