We live submerged in words and information. We often don't even understand their meaning anymore. What to do then when it is believed that words and languages are instead the founding character of the identity of the individual for the perception of the self and in the relationship with the others?
Isn't it true that without words we are elided from reality, without their essential, crystalline meaning, we have no vision to communicate, no grip on the world, we cannot go to the origin of things and envisage a path?
We wanted to call one of these paths for and with our boys and girls "English for Life", because with the acquisition of the English language we become citizens of the world, we also improve the language of origin from the comparison that arises, we multiply the results. And the sooner this happens, the longer the life of everyone who benefits from it.
What is important for our life today? As Leonardo said, meaning does not pre-exist experience; we wanted to understand and then we had many experiences. But understand, what?
How to help our planet that needs us today and this is perhaps understood more by boys and girls than by adults, who have led to today's problems.
And so this "English for Life" was a long journey, articulated and joyful, of workshops to learn about and conserve biodiversity, the wealth that we cannot lose because everyone's life depends on it. The first stepswere taken to visit in English the Museum of Natural History of the Mediterranean, their ethno-botanical garden, get to know terrestrial, marine, aquatic, wooded, rich scrub environments, the subsequent ones in rocky hillside environments to collect seeds.
Which we then cleaned and put into dormancy at minus 20° C so that they are kept for the future. We heard directly from the Millennium Seed Bank Kew, Sussex about the value of conserving biodiversity. International protocols involve many researchers who dedicate their lives to the benefit of all humanity by conserving 2.4 billion seeds from plants that constitute food, health and the environment for the future. We designed our bank, visited the Museum/Botanical Garden of the University of Pisa because the purpose of enhancing the natural environment is ancient even in the West, we embraced gigantic trees, we learned that the most majestic tree in the world was named after Mr. Sequoyah of the Cherokee Nation.
We got to know other monumental ones from the Internet thanks to a tree seeker to admire their solitude, their beauty, mindful of the history that has unfolded at their roots, sources as they are of healthy, regenerative environments that simply give us.
All intelligent living beings because evolution has always been characterized by intelligence, which has always favored the vitality to which we owe our presence on the planet today.
We welcomed strangers in Livorno, Mediterranean cruise passengers, who gave us their English to let us practice with subjects of interest, lively, real, interesting, experienced by everyone with the desire to share them, generosity and kindness, outdoors under the sky, to feel together the breath of freedom.
We have studied the provisions of the United Nations, the European Union and the amendments to the founding principles of our Constitution to restore the natural balance.
We wrote stories creating them with images from National Geographic, we drew, listened to musicians, tenors, in compositions about nature, songs from films about the wilderness. We recorded and listened, we played jumping on environmentalist philosopher Bruno Latour's hopscotch in our language laboratory, our headquarters.
Technology once again brought us the fellow citizen who, since he was a boy, had a passion for nature and birds, this new Leonardo to adore their flight and to found the Italian Bird Protection League, LIPU, the Sea and Water Bird Recovery Center, CRUMA, to take care of all the animals because, as Mr. Sequoyah taught us, without animals men would die of loneliness.
And then one experience after another, the ever higher flight, this citizen from Livorno became WWF International's Director General. A brief effective summary from that screen that has not dampened its vitality, of the damage done to our Earth in the last seventy years, but only to invite us, to encourage us to reverse the course. This is what nature is waiting for, to be left free again to have us intelligent like her to still color the entire planet with amazement. Glaciers, oceans, coral reefs, continents, forests, islands, seas, all in one fist and we've all known since we were children that this is the measure of our heart.
After him, with the same heart, brave representatives of LIPU and CRUMA Livorno in the classroom with us to testify with images and words of care, their work for the environment and for all non-human animals living in nature to which they extend their qualified assistance.
We visited the Aquarium, stroked rays, called turtles by name, understood how cruel it is to deceive fish with plastics, how biodiverse and rich our sea is; at the Interuniversity Center of Marine Biology, we understood how the sea and fishing are a resource to be protected, European and national standards in place. Laboratory on the catch with samples of fish to develop the same passion of marine biologists and who knows that we too may develop those not entirely invisible gills and fins to which an important mutation for all has brought them, the need for respect and to feel part together with all living beings of the same natural environment.
Isn't this perhaps the reason why those wings could be glimpsed from the animated arms of the fellow citizen from Livorno, WWF Director General, and branches and leaves from the head and arms of the tree seeker?
And as the inhabitants of the Lakota Nation said, wise to know, respect and promote a union with the Earth, all things are connected, mitakuye oyasin, we said it as a wish, consuming fabulous sweets with the memorable inscription "English for Life" who have not drawn on animals, thus respecting balances to know, to help us celebrate.
What, you ask? The first stage of a journey, having understood the words that now have more meaning because we have gained experience to become part of a shared commitment with those who are convinced, like us, that planet Earth is this simple and splendid home with balances to be respected, to be restored, in compliance with the laws of nature.
Look at each other now, turning in front of a mirror, students of the two modules of English for Life: Nicola, Denise, Giulia, Alberto, Samuele, Luca, Lorenzo, Elisa, Giorgio, Luca, Tommaso, Francesco, Federico, Manuel, Federico, Andrea, Matteo , Giacomo, Fabrizio, Diego, Arslan, Benedetta, Luca, Diego, Lorenzo, Tommaso, Fabio, Diego, Davide, Tommaso, Jamil, Diego, Giulia, Christian, Badr, Irene, Nicola, Filippo, Kevin, Matteo, Nicola, Alessio , Luigi, Chiara, Gioele, to see when wings or fins, branches and leaves will sprout, for a better, more serene, natural, just life on our planet, all together.