Mariano Fazio presents a new volume which adds to his prolific literary and essayistic repertoire. Fazio is a priest, historian and philosopher, and professor of History of Political Doctrines in the Faculty of Communication at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross in Rome. He has also been the first dean of that faculty and rector magnifico of the university. He now serves as auxiliary vicar of Opus Dei.
The choice of the book's theme, freedom, comes as no surprise. In the introduction to the book, the author makes a mention of gratitude to the Prelate of Opus Dei, Bishop Fernando Ocáriz, stating that he is at the origin of the book, due to the abundant personal meditation he has done on his pastoral letter on freedom published in January 2018. Nor is it surprising the way in which he approaches the subject, doing so hand in hand with great classic authors of all times.
Substantially, the author tries to show how freedom is oriented to love, and how this affirmation has an enormous importance for the Christian life. The reader will be able to observe throughout the pages how some passages from the Gospel are intermingled with authors such as Dostoyevsky, Tolkien or Dickens. The tone and the pleasant writing of Fazio invite to a meditative reading of the book, which will offer some guidelines for a true spiritual and human growth.
"We have been created free to love, and when we do not reach the proper end of freedom, we are faced with an existential failure. We all desire a successful, fulfilled, happy life. To achieve it, the key lies in doing everything freely, out of love". This thesis, which the author puts forward in a simple way, -"all great truths are"-is complicated to put into practice. Mainly, as Fazio also points out at the beginning of the book, because contemporary cultural currents abound with conceptions of freedom that are far removed from this thesis.
Taking the classics of literature as fellow travelers, the author confirms that "there is a series of values to which humanity has aspired since its beginnings and which deserve protection and custody". Therefore, Fazio wishes with these pages to present an aid to readers that will enable them to "decipher the profound meaning of this high concept of freedom".