August 2, 2021

“Too often, our ideas become identities”

Interview. Young associate of philosophy – a subject he teaches at the Jean-Sturm Gymnasium in Strasbourg -, Reza Moghaddassi is of Franco-Iranian origin. Born to a Muslim father and a Catholic mother, he embraced Buddhism for ten years. These three spiritual traditions deeply nourish his interior life, animated by a quest for the absolute that he evoked in his first work, Thirst for the essential (Marabout, 2018).

His latest book, The walls that separate men don’t rise to the sky (Marabout), questions our relationship to the truth in a period when convictions collide. ” We do not have the truth, we are at most possessed by it ”, underlines the philosopher, who seeks to get out of the opposition of opposites. According to him, if everyone has the truth, there is no more truth. ” Chaos arises from the inability, as Heraclitus would say, to make the play of opposites the equilibrium which makes the splendor of the world possible. ”

Meeting with a man who opens a path of wisdom and gives perspectives in a society that seeks itself.

Why did you want to write a book on the “walls that separate men”? What are they ?

Reza Moghaddassi. This book is first and foremost a reflection of my story because my father is an Iranian Shiite Muslim and my mother is French Catholic. My parents coming from different countries, religions and social backgrounds, I quickly questioned the relationship to the truth and the possibility of building bridges between our differences. I have always sought to find unity beyond what separates.

It is also for this reason that I turned to philosophy. Because I found through the philosophical concepts what to trace a path towards the universal, even if I understood later that one could reach this universal less by the reason than by the heart. So I bet that there are universal principles that illuminate human life beyond cultural differences.

“The experience of the singularity of the other is effaced behind deadly generalizations and reductions”

The other element that prompted me to write this book is the observation that our society is tearing itself apart more and more. The number of divisive subjects has increased enormously. These pages are a response to the growing hysterization of the debates.

We are building more and more walls between us. These walls come in large part from the relationship we have to our ideas and identities. The problem is not the truth itself, but how we relate to it. Fanaticism is not new. However, there is a greater tension in the face of ideas.

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