Once upon a time there was just one language...


Once upon a time, long, long ago, when the Earth was still young, there was a place where it all began, and the place where the first words were spoken was magnificent. Here men built Babel, which was much more than a simple home. It was a tower, in actual fact, tall and trim, that could hold everyone and everything.

It s appearance was almost magical: people believed that men and women had built it to get closer to heaven. And in fact Babel was just that: a stairway to heaven. In the dead of night the top disappeared among the clouds and, or at least so it was said, up there you could even fly…

Nevertheless, it would seem that the men and women were prone to being lazy. Of course they wanted to make things, to get ahead and to learn, but, as still sometimes happens to this day, they weren’t particularly interested in the distant future and they didn’t want to move.

God, on the other hand, wanted them to discover the whole world, and to force them to move he decided to create more languages.

So, one morning when the men and women woke up, they found themselves all talking different languages. Babel descended into total chaos! A place like that could not support all those sounds, ideas and words…

So the people spread out across the Earth, which they conquered. Once again they were surprised as they admired the variety of breathtaking places and things that awaited them. A world of wonder and unspoilt landscapes of natural beauty. This beauty brought back harmony: fortunately too they hadn’t forgotten that they had to continue to work together to try to get closer to heaven.

A new lease of life returned men, and they began to meet up again, to work together, to exchange their wares, and to try, as always, to do good business!

As a consequence they were forced to communicate more and more. And little by little this is how they became multilingual: everyone learned everyone else’s language. The extraordinary and unique experience of Babel had turned into an incredible variety of communities, each one with its own characteristics and history. It was as if from just one treasure, a hundred thousand others had been made, each one with something to bring and give to the others.

And this was the real surprise for people: sharing one’s own fortunes with others enriched everyone. The tower of Babel had become “Glocalland”: a global reality enhanced by local wisdom, where knowledge meets and grows day by day, making men wiser... And more serene on their journey to heaven.

Printable PDF version in english and italian.