The Drama of Love a youth magazine on love, sexuality and relationship
This magazine is made in the context of
The HUMAN Project Education for Life and Dignity
TH a European youth meeting September 2-6, 2009 Brussels, Belgium
“We believe that the authentic development of society can occur only in a culture that fosters integral human development characterized by physical, spiritual, mental, and emotional growth in a climate of respect for the human person and the family. ” World Youth Alliance Charter Using the opportunity of the WYA’s tenth birthday (Decade of Dignity and Development) the goal of “the HUMAN project’’ is to recentre our education policies on the human person’s integral development, dignity and on the primary role of the family in raising future generations. Local events have already taken place in Paris, London, Madrid and Vienna and participants are preparing for
this ﬁnal event on September 2nd through the 5th in Brussels. This will be the opportunity of deep discussions and trainings between young people and politicians, new members of the European Parliament and academics! Simultaneously, the participants are also invited to express the beauty of love and the gift of self through an inspiring photo contest called ‘Let’s Talk About Love’.
World Youth Alliance Europe Rue Belliard 23A, bte 6 B-1040 Brussels, Belgium Phone: +32 2 732 7605 Fax: +32 2 732 7889 email@example.com
THE DRAMA OF LOVE a youth magazine on love, sexuality and relationship
Only the lover sings! Dear Reader, As the German philosopher Josef Pieper states well in his book Only the Love Sings , it is a necessity for human persons to be able to contemplate and appreciate beauty and love to develop their full humanity.
Editor in Chief François Jacob WYA EUROPE Director François Jacob Director of Operations Iris Reinmiedl Contributors Thomas Bezak, Cono Giardullo, Christina Gilfedder, Thérèse Jacob-Hargot, Domas Konciene, Gabriele Konciene, Iuliia Kryvenko, Mojca Magdic, Marystella Ramirez Guerra, Edoardo Rosso. Graphic Design Cono Giardullo, Edoardo Rosso (firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com)
this magazine was made with the contribution of
This magazine is an attempt to do so. It was written by a group of young people, drawing from their experiences of longing and searching for true love and humanity. In the context of its 10th anniversary celebrations, World Youth Alliance has indeed gathered a team of participants from 7 countries from the European Union – France, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Slovakia, Slovenia and the United Kingdom - and from Ukraine and El Salvador, for a 4-day summer camp called ‘Viviamo!’. Together, they have assembled for you this unique set of articles, photographs and thoughts to express their vision about Man’s driving force: love. I invite you to explore these pages as you would go hiking in the mountains. First leave all your fears behind and set yourself the highest goal: �inding out what true love means and how this leads to an authentic ‘human integral development’ (page 4 and Love Generation interview p. 5). Then breathe in, get inspired by poetry (Bella Vita p.6) and unleash your creativity with the Let’s Talk about Love photograph contest (p.7). On your journey, you need to feed your soul with the teaching on love through history and art (p.8 and 9). At the end of the day, trust the ancient heroes like Joan of Arc and hopefully reach the sky, like our fathers tried when building cathedrals (p.10). Bravo, you’ve made it! Here you are... ready to join us at World Youth Alliance in our mission to promote humanity dignity and solidarity. In the end, I just wish this magazine could help you to discover your unexpected human potential of living and giving love. It is indeed an inspiring programme for students at the beginning of a new academic year, as well as for new Members of the European Parliament and assistants at the beginning of a new 5 year legislature...and as it should be for all of us, no matter who we are, since we all have dignity. Enjoy your reading, François Jacob World Youth Alliance – European Director
by Iris Reinmiedl and Mojca Magdic
(I.R) So, I am supposed to write about passion, desire and amorousness. Yes, about these subjects I know a lot, but how they work within marriage I haven’t got a clue. Somebody said: “The best medicine against amorousness is marriage”. Na great. That’s not really the best advertisement for it... since with passion and being in love one feels alive, dynamic, motivated, inspired and lifted up (otherwise stories like that of Romeo and Juliet, Goethe’s Werter or Twilight would not be so popular). Therefore, how can the longing (usually we long for what we do NOT have), desiring and the passion go together with marriage? Not a clue (only hope), but I remember a poem by Khalil Khalil Gibran:
(From “The Prophet”)
Are you really afraid of love? (M.M.) In love many questions come to light: why am I with this person? What do I love this person for? What do I want from this relationship? etc. The answer to why we fall in love and why we then continue to love this particular person can never be complete and satisfying. There is no right answer. Love calls and we answer to it. In the long run of loving somebody one question is important: Is the love that I am living creative? Does
You were born together, and together you shall be forevermore. You shall be together when the white wings of death scatter your days. Ay, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God. But let there be spaces in your togetherness, And let the winds of the heavens dance between you. Love one another, but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup. Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone, Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music. Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping. For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts. And stand together yet not too near together: For the pillars of the temple stand apart, And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.
this love realize all the possibilities inherent in me? Does this love realize all the possibilities inherent in me? Does it make me alive? It does not matter so much if I am with that person from my neighbourhood or from the different side of the world; if I am with a person I have known from my childhood or with somebody whom I have met recently; if that person is younger or older, etc. The important thing is that our love �lourishes. There is nothing more beautiful than saying “I love you today, more than yesterday and less than tomorrow.” Even better: “Loving you made me only more of myself” or “By loving you I realized so much secret potential I did not know I had inside.” Love does not only grow somewhere outside on its own. By its nature love is “bilateral”, something between two persons, something shared. It is neither my love nor your love, it is our love. It involves the totality of you and the totality of me. It asks for your and my emotions, it requires your and my imagination, creativity, time, effort, trust, and nonetheless it asks for your and my will and intellect. Love asks you everything that you have and possess. Furthermore, it requires from you the things that you do not yet have. Love is demanding, though it is the only way to feel yourself; alive and complete. I ask you again: Are you still afraid of love?
Love Generation: young professionals and teenagers discuss sex, love and ideals...
Interview from Thérèse JacobHargot, founder of Love Génération asbl*
Drama Of Love team: What kind of information about sexuality is given today in Europe? Thérèse Jacob-Hargot: It is either non-existent or negative. Sexual education is being challenged by young people today. They have great expectations for quality information and discussions that meet their ideals. DOL: So what do young people want to talk about when it comes to sex? TJH: As Pauline, a 17-year-old girl from Belgium, points out: “One speaks to us about the risks without speaking about love”. On October 1st, 2008 I invited 10 young people between 16 and 18 years old. Then I asked each one of them to tell me what kind of sexual education they have received, if any. The answers were: a testimony of a homosexual person infected by HIV/AIDS; a visit to an abortion centre; a priest promoting the virtues of pornography and encouraging the exercise of various forms of sexuality; distribution of condoms followed by a visit to the family planning centre, etc. To the question of what they want to speak about during sexual education classes, the answer was unanimous: about love! DOL: So what can we do to answer this need? TJH: We need to create places of dialogue where we would discuss the difference between men and women, the respect of intimacy and the deep sense of sexuality and the love. With Love Génération, young professionals are providing information on health issues but they are also offering tailor-made trainings on how all the dimensions of the person – physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual – and how they should be respected and cherished. *Love Génération is a youth movement promoting a positive image about love and sexuality. www.Love-generation.be
by Gabriele Konciene
This poem was inspired by the camp “Viviamo!” in beautiful Orleans, where there was the opportunity to watch the movie “Bella”. There was time to reﬂect on the movie which speaks about different family experiences, suffering due to guilt, and love between friends. Home is a place for life. Here people rejoice in their childhood and they spend their lives waiting for a chance to ﬁx their mistakes. Here they love each other as they are. The home is full of eloquent signs.
Bella vita Imagine a house Old and big With a courtyard and a meadow Imagine a broken mirror hanging in that house Blurry... but still with shiny golden frames It used to be in the front entrance Till once it crashed with all its might Into thousands of pieces Time was passing but no relief was found There was no beauty anymore Just sadness and despair Just pain and suffering in a puzzled world Without a hope for the second chance
But a good thing happened It got �ixed And now it hangs again Like a phoenix The eyes which looks at it Remember times of childhood When the courtyard was a sunny place without a breeze with light shadows under the trees When the meadow was full of children playing Searching for the ﬂowers and sweet smells or collecting the seaside shells When life was like a butterﬂy Beautiful and fragile
ove l t u o b a Let’s talk
photograph submitted by Gerlinde Hufnagel - Austria, 22 The World Youth Alliance Europe has celebrated its 10th birthday and has also hosted a Europe-wide photography contest entitled “Let’s Talk about Love” and an exhibition of the artwork, which has been displayed in the European Parliament, Brussels. Young people from all over Europe, ages 10 to 30, are invited to share their personal experience of love and education, understood as the transmission of: * an understanding of dignity, love and the ability to give of oneself * the capacity to act and live according to it VISIT THE LET’S TALK ABOUT LOVE EXHIBITION IN THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT (Brussels) from August the 31st till September the 4th in the Altiero Spinelli building, right side, level 0. Vernissage on Thursday, September the 3rd, 18:30
by Iuliia Kryvenko
through History Love is the primary issue of all humans; one ponders his mind and soul when questioned about it. Is he/she the one? How can I make sure if he/she is? Is this real or just a fantasy I’m living? The Ancients asked these questions, but no answer might ever be found for all mankind, as “there are as many minds as there are heads and as many loves as there
Odysseus are romantic episodes, but also in context enhance the tragic climax or supplement the hero’s power of will and can describe a love story in the way we would expect nowadays. For example the myths of Echo and Narcissus, Aphrodite and Adonis warn us against characteristics of the person that are the biggest enemies of happy relationships faithlessness
“Nascita di Venere” by Botticelli
are hearts.” But at least the experience of others might clarify our inspirations with good examples or avoid mistakes by unhappy ones... First evidence of a decisive role of sexuality and relationships in the life of a person and consequently within society came to us with the love stories of ancient myth. Love is the one of the most represented themes of ancient Greek stories. It surrounds and captivates the reader’s interest in the story. Many characters and stories of archaic Greek literature are still alive in our imagination. Epic battles and travel adventures have portrayed us as authentic heroes from both the vanquished and the victorious. Certainly the farewell between Hector and Andromaca – one of the most beautiful pages of Iliad – or the love of Kalypsó for
and abundant vanity. Undoubtedly stories of Eros and Psyche, Orpheus and Eurydice, Daphnis and Cloe are verses of unimaginable power and love. Love for the beloved, for nature, for family is often praised in long and somewhat tedious descriptions. It is only through a combined perspective of history, religion and myth that we fully understand that love always triumphs through any adversity.
“Narciso” by Caravaggio
by Christina Gilfedder
Castle of Chambord, France
In 2006 the �irst Viviamo! summer school organized by World Youth Alliance was entitled The Art of Living and responded to the Millennium Development Goals with questions of human dignity in relation to culture and environment, particularly through the themes of architecture, art and beauty. From this, those young people learned how the environment we live in in�luences perceptions of human dignity. 2009’s Viviamo! The Drama of Love, looked at the importance of love and respect as an experience of the human person. Visiting the Château of Chambord we looked speci�ically at the theme of love in relation to beauty and culture. It is imperative to highlight the importance of human dignity in relation to architecture, art and environment. Many buildings today have been designed primarily for aesthetic experience, which is problematic when the function of the building and entire experience of its inhabitants are not fully taken into consideration. The importance of the person becomes secondary as a result. However, when aesthetic beauty plays an equal role with the function of the building, the experience can be entirely different. It is my opinion that the Château of Chambord demonstrated a respect for the human person as it showed the understanding of the primary function of a building while demonstrating a need and importance for aesthetic beauty. The symmetry of the castle re�lects the in�luence and characteristics of the Italian Renaissance; ratio, geometry and proportions, engenders harmony and grandeur. The staircase, famous for the separate double helix staircase within the same vault, is the central focus in the Greek Cross structure of the main building, which is split proportionally and logically.
There is no clash between scale and design and so beauty arises from the equilibrium of space. It fully takes into consideration the life of the human person and is designed on the basis of function. This direct experience of architecture which respects and upholds the dignity of the human person, challenges us to question the importance of culture in our own lives and how vital it is for the human person to be at the centre of policy and culture.
The “double revolution” staircase attributed to Leonardo Da Vinci
by Domas Konciene and Marystella Ramirez Guerra
What historical places and heroes teach us about love Orléans
ORLEANS - Orléans is located in the septentrional bend of the Loire and belongs to the vallée de la Loire which was in 2000 inscribed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. It is today an average-sized city of 250,000 inhabitants and it still has a strategically central position, less than an hour from the French capital. (Wikipedia)
Cathedral of Orléans
The cathedral in Orléans was constructed in the Classic Gothic style by the architect Robert de Courtenay. The style was made to transmit the beauty of the spiritual world and as a sign of worship to God. Orléans is one of the best examples of the gothic style in all Europe, whose stained glass windows were at that period at the height of development, by allowing the sun to bring the different shades of nature to the inside of the church. The Cathedral reminds us of a time when the expression of love, both to others and to the transcendent, was closely tied to external signs of beauty.
Joan of Arc
Saint Joan of Arc (1412–1431) is a national heroine of France and Catholic saint. A peasant girl born in eastern France, she led the French army to several important victories during the Hundred Years’ War, claiming divine guidance, and was indirectly responsible for the coronation of Charles VII. She was captured by the Burgundians, sold to the English, tried by an ecclesiastical court, and burned at the stake at the age of nineteen. She was beati�ied in 1909 and later canonized in 1920. She is one of three patron saints of France. Joan asserted that she had visions from God telling her to recover her homeland from English domination late in the Hundred Years’ War. The French used to call her la “Pucelle d’Orléans” because of her young age and virginity. Joan of Arc has remained an important �igure in Western culture. From Napoleon to the present, French politicians of all leanings have invoked her memory. Major writers and composers who have created works around her life include Shakespeare, Voltaire, Schiller, Verdi, Tchaikovsky, Mark Twain.
WYA Europe Summer camp
World Youth Alliance is a global coalition of young people committed to promoting the dignity of the person and building solidarity among youth from developed and developing nations. WYA trains young people to work at regional and international levels to impact policy and culture. WYA represents 1 million members through its 5 regional ofﬁces in Africa (Nairobi), Asia Paciﬁc (Manila), Europe (Brussels), Latin America (Mexico) and North America (New York). In Europe, WYA gathers around 3.000 members and 40 youth organizations.
For more information contact World Youth Alliance – Europe, Rue Belliard 23 A, 1040 Brussels, Belgium Tel +32 2 732 7605, Fax +32 2 732 7889, firstname.lastname@example.org. Sign the Charter! www.wya.net
a youth magazine on love, sexuality and relationship