The Press and The Revelation of Arès
A reply by Michel Potay to comments touching on the media, journalism in particular, and the absence therein of The Revelation of Arès, translated by djd.
Oh, yes, so as not “to fall into the throes of censure and propaganda” journalists censure themselves and make their own propaganda. It is a snake biting its own tail, thus they go around in circles, locking themselves in a cycle from which they cannot escape. As they cannot get out of it, they keep seeing the same things and cannot find us!
You are right: there have only been two journalists among us, both were Breton, working for Ouest France at the end of the 70’s, beginning of the 80’s. One fell ill and died, the other disappeared. But that is all. Journalism is a profession some members of which have approached us on a strictly private basis and not more than as sympathisers but never on a professional basis. Another profession is in the same case, lawyers, notary publics, judges. Our sister Lucette P., now defunct, was the only professional lawyer to be a member of our assembly in Marseille, although she never participated in the mission.
A journalist near the end of his career, member of the director’s board for the group Express wrote to me in the 80’s more or less the following: “There are some personalities of which one can never speak ill, the Pope, the Dalaï Lama, etc., and there are some personalities of which one can never speak good, Michel Potay, for example. The best thing a journalist who holds you in esteem can do is to remain silent.” Therefore I consider the press’s silence on my subject to be a sign of sympathy. My police record is blank, I have never even been investigated, I pay my taxes and no one has ever been able to redress me in that domain, no one has ever lodged a complaint against me, therefore journalists, who know that I am now 88 years old and that the movement issuing from The Revelation of Arès will be 44 years old in January, don’t know what to say about me. The same is true of our big family of Arès Pilgrims, there are only honest people. I nipped in the bud the rare attempts of corruption or abuse that could have happened in our assembly. Prevented from saying good about us and not having anything bad to say, journalists are vowed to silence. This is the auto censure I mentioned at the beginning of this reply.
I have often formed an idea of what a journalist could say about us if he were to keep to information pure and simple. For example, this short article, strictly informative:
“Michel Potay, ex-engineer and ex-ecclesiast, affirms that he was visited by Jesus as the Creator’s Messenger in 1974 and by the Creator Himself in 1977. He consigned the message that they gave him in a work called The Revelation of Arès (Arès is the town in the Gironde department of France where the supernatural events took place) now with 350 000 copies in circulation.
The Revelation of Arès does not found a religion but revives a spiritually liberating movement similar in spirit to Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. The members of this movement are called Arès Pilgrims.
They have been street missionaries for 44 years. Their message is quite simple: Man, know that it is not your religion or your prayer that will save you, but rather the Good that you do. This Good is called penitence: love, forgiveness, peace, spiritual intelligence and freedom, in The Revelation of Arès. In other words, evil will not be conquered by religion, morality, law, courts, etc., but simply in your heart!”
Why has not one journalist been capable of having printed such a simple article? It is a legitimate question, intriguing. Well! I think it is because journalists never stick to just giving the facts. They think, they interpret and want their thoughts and interpretations to be known. Thought in their eyes is to establish one or more projects, to say what crosses their mind. The journalists thought makes him something more than one who informs. He wants to participate in the laws of the universe, politics, the world of thought, to give meaning to the moment, to technique, to History, to our presence in the world.
The journalist does not see this work of thought as being purely informative. For him it is also interpretive. He wants to show that he is capable of deducing. For him, to change the world (Rev of Arès 28/7) is first to understand it and he considers that a simple statement of facts does not permit comprehension. He wants to understand the meaning of what is. So he gives an opinion and this opinion about the supernatural at Arès is first and always, doubt. He will say that he doubts because it’s in the air of our time, but he considers that if he says he is in doubt, many readers will also doubt, and that would possibly be a shame, etc. From there, a contradiction which generates a certain impotence for journalism to treat this kind of subject.
What conditions must be met so that a journalist would limit himself to the facts in an adequate manner? I do not know, but I know that this goes further then the idea that I have of pure journalism, which in reality doesn’t exist, because The Revelation of Arès questions the reader about being, the fact of being, the reason for being, in short, man in all his depths, and that the journalist wants to add his grain of salt.
The Revelation of Arès raises the question of life or death, existence or nonexistence of the soul and in this realm, it is probably no longer the role of the press to reflect but rather a theologian, a metaphysician, a philosopher. The journalist then asks himself what is his role, he perceives its limits but that irritates him, he tries to push its limits. Not everyone has the extraordinary talent of a Jack London or a Joseph Kessel for presenting things as they should be, that is to say, while remaining a journalist, to invite the reader to ask himself metaphysical questions. The journalist thus fears remaining, if I can say “unthought”. The result is that for us, Arès Pilgrims, the best spokesperson is perhaps not a journalist but for example, a philosopher, an essayist, maybe a historian… a philosopher, an essayist, or a historian with a large audience of course.
For example, the role of a historian of ideas would be to examine the ideas contained in The Revelation of Arès and in the thought of the witness, the prophet, to understand their signification, to evaluate their coherence and reach, to show their genealogy, to note the filiations.
But the journalists with whom I met in the 80’s quickly saw that I am a man without the least concern for my own self and that caused them such a problem, that so disconcerted them, that they finally said, “This guy, let’s just crush him, since he has such a lack of care about his own person.” In effect, and I know this is a handicap in this day and age, I do not have the slightest desire to enter History, nor to be famous in any way. I only wish, as this is the role given to me by the Father, to find a sufficient number of penitents, ripe ears of grain, and it is the journalist that appears to me to be most apt to contact the world via the press. But for me personally I couldn’t care less if I am buried anonymously in a common grave at the rear of a cemetery. After my maternal grandmother died in Arès, as she had become an Arès Pilgrim, we went to Toulouse for the cremation (there was not at that time a crematorium in Bordeaux, 1982 or 1983), while she was burning in the oven, I went walking around the cemetery and found myself in the area of the unknown dead, a small mound of earth and a little stick with a number: “867” or “B148”. I said to myself, “That’s what I would like,” to be buried anonymously – I dare not say like Calvin or Mozart, because one would think I am comparing myself to these geniuses, I who am a zero, but I dare say like…let’s say…a Trappist, because I believe that Trappists do not have their name on their sepulchre. That’s fine, because the soul, if one has a soul, does not bear a name, and if one is nothing more than a spectre, it does not bear a name either; they are nothing but unnamed entities in the light or in the shadows according to the case. As for myself, I do not know if I have earned a soul, I hope so, but no more than that.
After all, how many journalists have brought a contribution to the history of thought and ideas? Very few. Some editorialists undoubtedly, such as Charles Péguy, Albert Camus, Raymond Aron and a few others. Yes, very few journalists have drawn fruitful charts of the interpretation of events, ways of seeing the world that might help it progress. Then why do they not act as humble informers? Can there not be found simply a journalist who would keep to the facts as I proposed above? One does not expect a journalist to think about the nature of mankind, society’s origin, a new theory of value, the essence of capitalism, communism, Christianity, Islam, life after death, etc. A journalist is not expected to found the basics of a philosophy of the depths. Péguy, I believe, did a bit of journalism and how interesting it would be to know what Charles Péguy would think about The Revelation of Arès, but that was another time. A time when, as you say, there was a Zola to write “J’accuse”. Poor Péguy was blown to smithereens by a German shell or riddled with bullets, I don’t know which anymore, during the 1914-1918 war. Derision of brute soldiers who believe that destroying a grand thought is defending justice. Poor world!
The world is led by love or hate, generosity or selfishness, truth or lying. The old question of whether or not ideas lead the world has not been answered and above all, not in the realm of journalism. Journalists have never constituted a force capable of underlying the foundations of History, to change the will of mankind, to define moral determinations, social interactions, innovations leading to happiness. Look, after seventy-five years of soviet journalistic propaganda and the hammering of Marxist ideas on the radio and television in the URSS, what is left today? Nothing. That should incite journalists to be strictly informers, but no! They wish to be considered thinkers. That is the problem.
Journalists should know, and know it better than anyone else, that intellectuals (those who think) have a bad reputation in many circles, are perceived as idea jugglers, to whom reality is foreign, for the facts are no longer reality when one gives an interpretation of them, holds forth on them. There has been ancient thought, scholastic thought, the Cartesian revolution, the Kantian revolution, modern historicism and there will be one day or another Arèsian thought, of which I will be the minuscule mediocre initiator hoping that others better than me will express in a more sublime way, more spiritual, more celestial, more decisive, in order to make this world a world of men of love, forgiveness, peace, with the heart’s intelligence and freedom. We Arès Pilgrims are very far from noisy revolutions, grand human explosions that journalists love so much because that gives them scoops, promotions, raises, but these big explosions have no tomorrow. We will have a tomorrow and who in fact can speak about tomorrow? Journalists?
The Revelation of Arès provides the human being a way of thinking which can understand the historic moment humanity is living at the present time and change its course which is leading to the sin of sins (Rev of Arès 38/2). Perhaps the journalist could add this to the small article found above?
20jul17 187C3 Réponse