Authors: Carla and Franca Podo
This historical-philosophical essay is a vibrant proof of the pacific movements born during the World War I, and then courageously spread across Italy and Europe in the first half of the 20th Century.
A hundred years ago, Lugi Trafelli, mathematician and physicist from Nettuno, near Rome, got his first philosophical-religious essay printed at his own expense (Pistoia, 1917) and distributed the free copies among a limited number of readers. The title was “XX Secolo dopo Cristo – Ubi Christianus? (Experimentum crucis)”. The book deals with the incompatibility between war and Christianity and represents a vivid witness of the pacifist mindset in Italy and Europe in the first half of the Twentieth Century. One of the Trafelli’s most remarkable messages is the synthesis between the brotherhood preached by Jesus Christ, the Greek-Roman Stoicism’s observance of civil laws and the balance between man and nature envisioned by the Epicurean poet Lucretius Caro. The harmonious adoption of these pillars of the “liberty of human spirit” would likely help us in tackling the most pressing humanitarian and environmental challenges of the 21st Century. The publication of this book (edited by the Trafelli’s last descendants, Carla and Franca Podo) aims at creating a bridge between the world and the era described by the author and the present generations.
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Born in Nettuno (Italy) in 1881, Luigi Trafelli was mathematician, physicist, philosopher and pacifist during World War I. As a member of the Italian Society for the Progress of Sciences and of the Italian Physics Society, he contributed to the newest hypotheses emerging in the early 1900’s on the nature and structure of atoms and subatomic particles. Trafelli was also the inventor of patented electromagnetic devices. In 1917, during his convalescence from a severe disease contracted in war, he wrote his first historical-philosophical essay “XX Secolo dopo Cristo – Ubi Christianus? (Experimentum crucis)” followed, in the next two decades, by a number of other essays which focused on Christian “Metanoia“. He died in 1942, after a life dedicated to scientific and humanistic studies and to a passionate teaching of mathematics and physics at the “Liceo Classico Umberto Primo” in Rome (currently dedicated to Pilo Albertelli) and in Italian schools abroad (Cairo and Alexandria in Egypt, and Tunis). He represented, for the young generations, a rare example of love for the liberty of human spirit, of intellectual righteousness and carelessness for any kind of “worldly glory”. The Italian Ministry of Education named the Istituto Tecnico Industriale Statale (I.T.I.S.) in Nettuno after him.
By the same Author:
Idee Scientifiche e Umane attraverso Tempi e Scuole – Saggio di Studi Lucreziani (Tipografia Franco-Belga G. Bonaccorso & S. Pulejo; Cairo, 1923). Dottrina di Cristo – Haceldam (Libreria Editrice Mantegazza di P. Cremonese; Roma,1924).Dopo Trecento Anni Paolo Segneri S.J. Ritorna Contro la Ragion di Stato (Società Anonima Libraria; Roma, 1924).
Dalla Dottrina di Cristo al Catechismo (Vox Cla-mantis; Roma, 1926); also translated and printed in English (Are We Really Christians? H.R. Alleson, Ltd, London; 1932); in German (Wir, Bűrger vom Reiche des Satan Publicitas, reg Verlags-Gen. m.b.H.; Wien, I., Hofburg, 1931) and in French (Nous, Citoyens du Royaume de Satan (traduit par Maxime Formont) Presses de E. Ramlot et C.; en vente aux Messagerie Hachette, Paris, 1928-1929).
Il Testamento di Cristo (Atar S.A.; Ginevra, 1933).Je Repète ici la Parole que l ’on ne Doit pas Taire… (Editions Ambiorix; Rethel, Ardennes, 1935).L’Encyclique Testamentaire de l ’Ile de Deportation et de Martyre du Pape Léon XIV (Editions Ambiorix; Rethel, Ardennes, 1935.
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