Porto Liberal, A route right to The Heart
To belong. Keyword of humanity.
The capacity to form and maintain relationships – the capacity to belong – is a fundamental force that pervades all Humanity. We are born and grow in the context of our “clan”, family, community, culture … Without others, without belonging, we neither survive nor thrive. This biological need is so powerful that when a child’s caregivers give her unwanted signals, dear – not to belong – the neural networks of the brain can activate a shut down response. Even if you have calories (food), your child can lose weight and even die. Moreover, this need to establish and maintain relationships is not limited to the present … we need to establish a connection with the people of our past. If we are not given the possibility of establishing this connection – this narrative – it will be almost impossible to dream the future.
But Porto … ah, Porto feeds on the future, because its dream is rooted in the heritage of freedom, prosperity, equality and tolerance … of the Liberal Port.
The Route that we are proposing to you is here and there, before and after the purpose of just making known the Siege of Porto. We want and believe that through the places, buildings, streets, landscapes, collections, memories …, you can connect with the people who, in the 19th century, made Invicta the one who was already the “most noble and ever loyal” City of Porto.
Let’s get started. Wherever, wherever we may meet.
The first step is always that of utopia. The Douro, especially in the contemporary era, was a sign of openness to the world, to commercial exchanges but also to ideas, innovators and progressives who, tide the tide, book by book, soaked the Portuguese in the desire for political, economic and social transformation.
Second step. The path of transformation is decency. Can this seem strange? It is decent society that does not humiliate its members, cares for the losers and protects the fragile; It is decent society that assumes the moral responsibility to include. Is it not therefore decency that we can glimpse in the trilogy Freedom, Equality, Fraternity, conceived in the middle of the century of the Lights under the inspiration of the ideal of liberalism, and which illuminated the French Revolution? At one time, this trilogy was an object of political combat and a project of change in the social structures in force during the Ancien Régime.
Third step. The medium of transformation is hospitality. Attribute of the people of Porto, certainly. And more? Hospitality is a mark of the human, since civilization has taken a decisive step, perhaps the (decisive) decisive step, in the day when the foreigner, from hostile, has become a host. This passage must be given over and over again, and each generation must be educated to carry out this passage and not fall back into the deadly logics of contraposition between “us” and “them.” Hospitality. Thus was the Port for D. Pedro and for the liberal values. Open heart to welcome, lives delivered to defend. That is why this is a direct route to the Heart. If “love with love is paid”, hearts with Heart are rescued!
Steps for more? It’s yours … come from there!