Why our migrations?

Given the way migration is treated and narrowly viewed by the media and by political, social, and even economic interests, whereby a certain "undefined" group agrees to "help" those referred to as "migrants" (a term that is widely used, but ill-defined), is it still possible to ask "why", to ask what meaning our migrations have, all our migrations?

In Brussels, since 2012, the Josefa Foundation has been trying to meet this challenge, operationally, around and within the Josefa House, but also politically, through its vision "All of us, migrants", using a global (physical, psycho-intellectual and spiritual) approach.

Although this may not please some people or even the majority of people, the issue of migration can only be addressed using a global (social, economic, cultural and faith-based) approach, accounting for each individual’s singularity, and moreover, on the basis of our migrations, of our humanity.

Therefore, the question "Why our migrations?" throughout the ages, in the past, present and future, does not necessarily need an answer, but rather an in-depth look at the meaning of the inherent human condition of our migrations, a contemplation, if you will, of our migrations.

This need for contemplation (although shared by the Josefa team members) is not espoused by everyone. In fact, humanitarian urgency, political interests, unreliable or biased media sources, and unfortunately and often legitimately, the social economy (subsidised aid), discourage or even prevent people from asking this fundamental question: "Why?" Today, some sociologists, anthropologists and socio-political actors are focusing on the letter, and not the spirit, of the issue; they are trying to find the root causes: lack of development, education..., in short, the search for solutions to a so-called problem (including when some dare to give specific virtues – economic, cultural, culinary... – to the presence of "migrants") that can be seen as a paradox: "I do not accept my neighbour, because he would have opposing political views and a different social status, but I am a host or a friend of a "migrant", because they are "a migrant", without even knowing if potentially they are not my worst enemy, and not only politically speaking.

Admittedly, the humanitarian challenges are enormous in the event of wars or violence and we cannot deny the need for intervention. But this does not, in any way (at the risk, like today, of a political failure), obscure the urgent need to agree on the seriousness of asking "Why?"

Indeed, our world is lost and torn politically and financially (what money wasted!) in the "how" or the "what to do".

With Josefa, let us first of all agree that our migrations are the foundation of our humanity. And then, the "Why" can emerge. A phenomenology of our migrant-being is made alive. This certainly doesn’t mean that we are negating the plight of many of our migrations, but to question the "Why" is to offer meaning where most of us (certainly, for those who are directly experiencing it, it can be legitimately and fully justified) only give nonsensical answers.

Our migrations have a meaning that escapes us, especially because few want to question them and, in that way, offer them the possibility of a vague meaning because it’s mysterious (it is perhaps also why our rationalist world does not lend itself to it): it is the price and fruit of our migrant humanity. Each migration is unique, each migrant is unique.

The meaning will be revealed if our human freedom takes the risk of asking "why".