Pope Warns Against Dangers of Computer

Source: FSSPX News


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Benedict XVI granted an audience to the rector, the professors, the students, and the staff of the University of Parma (Italy) on December 1, 2008.

Using the example of St. Peter Damian (1007-1072) who had been a student in Parma, and was a reformer in his time, the pope exhorted university students to be “sensitive to the spiritual patrimony left by St. Peter Damian” who had managed to reach a happy synthesis between the eremitical life and ecclesial activity, and a golden mean between “solitude and communion” in his life as a Camaldule friar. The pope also warned the “younger generations” against “the twofold danger” caused by the “new computer technologies.” On the one hand, he explained, there is “the danger of a diminution of the capacity of mental concentration and application on the personal level,” and on the other hand, “the danger of an isolation of the individual in a reality which is more and more virtual.”

The consequences are felt in the social dimension which “is bursting into a multitude of fragments”, whereas the personal dimension “closes in on itself and tends to refuse to build any relationship with others,” Benedict XVI explained. Next he underlined the positive role of the university to which man feels himself “spiritually attached”, and which, on the contrary, lives “thanks to the virtuous equilibrium” between the times of private life and of community life”, and between “research and reflection” and “sharing and discussing with others.”

Next, Benedict XVI evoked the university reform which is underway in Italy, and is the object of many criticisms in the Peninsula. “A university reform is of any worth only if it is confronted with freedom: freedom to teach, freedom to research, freedom of the academic institution as regards the economical and political powers,” the pope stated. (Sources: apic/imedia/VIS)