Alexander Pschera

Alexander Pschera, born 1964 in West Germany, studied German, Philosophy and Music in Heidelberg. He is an author, publicist and translator.

Source: shutterstock Pointing to the divine origin of all substance: saying grace

Endangered gestures:Saying Grace

Invokes community

Grace can only be said where there is still a commonly used table. Only where people gather for a shared meal is it possible to keep alive the memory of that which saying grace reminds us of: Christ blessed food for his apostles and for the community, not for himself. Every time grace is said, it implies and thereby includes a communal gesture of pausing in thankfulness; a gesture that, in the age of the individualist ‘anything goes’, is disappearing more and more. A communal meal begun by saying grace was remembrance and evocation in one. With it, time was suspended. Today, a meal is no longer a social act and certainly not a metaphysical act which would point to the divine origin of all substance. Eating is either a function sacrificed to the rush of life and worked into the timing of existence, accomplished somehow or other and in passing, or a hedonistic celebration of food consumption that has gotten way out of hand, immortalized thousands of times on Instagram. They are, in both cases, expressions of nihilism, in which matter takes control over spirit. Incidentally, the demise of saying grace, which in past times was said in Latin by the father of the family, who would stand, is also a reflection of the demise of humility, discipline, education and hierarchy.

Translated from: Cato Magazin, 4/19.

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