Minha Vida Pública
Compilação de relatos autobiográficos de
Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira
Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira (1908-1995) did not write an autobiography. However, the fundamental traits of his remarkable life and fruitful work can be drawn from the vast collection of documents that the compilers of these autobiographical reports had at their disposal thanks largely to recordings made on various occasions and later transcribed into digital form. Other sources are oral presentations he made at the request of his disciples and followers, excerpts from conversations, lectures, conferences, books recounting his epic saga, articles, manifestos, interviews, press statements, letters etc.
They did not intend to exhaust the many aspects that characterize the good fight Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira fought in his nearly ninety years of life and seventy years of struggle for the cause of the Church and of Christian civilization. Given the sheer length of the matter and the wealth of its content and aspects, that would not be feasible. So they have only emphasized elements that enable the reader to form a faithful, substantial and clear idea of his outstanding action in the Brazilian scene.
And not only here: His influence extended far beyond our borders. It spread across the world at decisive moments in the history of the twentieth century and indicates, even to this day, a luminous path to be followed in the contemporary crisis.
A reader exempt from anti-Christian bias will easily discern the profoundly Catholic mentality with which Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira engaged in battles defending the foundations of an authentic Christian order. Eyeing the future restoration of Catholic civilization so often announced by authoritative voices of saints and prophets, and even by the Mother of God at Fatima, he fought those battles with unparalleled gallantry and indisputable acumen.
Hence the epitaph inscribed in his tombstone, according to its expressed desire: “Vir catholicus, totus apostolicus, plene romanus” (A fully Roman Catholic and apostolic man).
With a sense of reality that excluded any illusion whatsoever, Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira was always keenly aware that his action developed in a world that had distanced itself from God and remained on its disastrous path, falling ever more deeply into chaos and disarray. At the same time, he saw sparks of genuine conversion light up here and there, in the leaden horizon, like morning stars indicating that a new day was about to dawn. So he wrote:
“Beyond the sadness and supremely likely punishments we are inching toward, we see before us sacral flashes of the dawn of the Reign of Mary” (Catolicismo magazine, No. 197, May 1967).
In order to simplify the outlook for the reader, we could say that the work of Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira was done in two distinct but overlapping fields. First, a prophetic denunciation of the vast progressive conspiracy within the Church which now attains unsuspected levels; and second, a staunch and effective combat, always within the bounds of legality, against the revolutionary process which, from the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries to this day, strives to completely secularize and de-Christianize temporal society.
Even in this second field of action, Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira repeatedly pointed out the deleterious influence of Catholic leftism on civil society.
In the first half of the twentieth century it was still possible to observe how human relations in the West were still considerably impregnated with the spirit of the Gospel and greatly influenced by principles of the natural Law. The role played by Catholic leftists, at the same time followers and advocates of the most advanced forms of socialism, was precisely to replace, in more or less subtle ways depending on the situations and occasions, that mentality and those principles with conceptions at variance with and often opposed to them.
Against this revolutionary design, Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira fearlessly raised the standard of the Counter-Revolution. And over the years, countless adherents gathered around him, especially young people tired of revolutionary utopias and of mediocrity and fatuous pleasures, and avid to serve a higher ideal that was really worth serving.
His masterly essay Revolution and Counter-Revolution describes the core of revolutionary doctrine and action, as well as the effective way to oppose them. The light emanating from that work will constantly enlighten us throughout this volume.
It was therefore in order to defend the Church and Christian civilization that Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira extended his action throughout the world by helping establish independent associations inspired by the same goals and sharing the same ideal.
At the same time he encouraged and supported organizations with similar goals existing in other countries, tending to form a broad front to combat the Revolution. Such a front would bring together all those who oppose the destruction of any part, however small, of the sacred edifice of the Church or the likewise sacred pillars of Christian civilization.
Given the different materials employed in this work it became necessary to adapt the spoken language to written language and also to unify various texts, offering the reader a single style by presenting the texts as much as possible as phrases uttered or written in the first person by the author, thus highlighting the autobiographical nature of the whole. This editorial license in no way diminishes or impairs fidelity to the documents that served as the basis of this compilation; indeed, our earnest commitment to authentically reproduce the meaning of the narrations made by Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira is kept throughout the work. Accordingly, the colloquial character of this text was also kept wherever possible, as it is not intended as a piece of literature but to be easily assimilated by the reader. For readability purposes, on rare occasions we also took the liberty of introducing short sentences to make a harmonious transition between one subject and another.
From Part Ten onward, as the events are closer to the present day and somehow the autobiographical narrations made by Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira in his lectures became less frequent, some of the autobiographical tone that pervades these pages gives way to narratives and comments on current events, always made by him.
All of the vast and invaluable documentation employed is meticulously indicated in footnotes, which also contain clarifications by the compilers.
It would be well to keep in mind the meaning of some oft-repeated acronyms. For this end, please see the Chart of Bibliographical Abbreviations, below.
The public documents and other texts by Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira quoted throughout this work can easily be consulted at www.pliniocorreadeoliveira.info.
We hope this narrative in autobiographical form will enable the reader to appreciate the grandeur of this illustrious Brazilian who so honored our country and yet whose name and lifework are often the objects of a conspiracy of silence within our borders. In contrast, in cultured nations of the northern hemisphere he is renowned as an intellectual, a Catholic, and a man of action.
Having enthusiastically taken up the task of continuing his work, the directors and volunteers of the Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira Institute thus render him this tribute of justice on the twentieth anniversary of his death.
São Paulo, September 8, 2015
Feast of the Nativity of Our Lady
Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira Institute