On the Day of Slavic Literacy and Culture, according to the old tradition, praises will be poured. And according to the "new and modern" tradition, the Slavic of literacy and culture will be challenged because it is something that is not "purely" Bulgarian. I plan to refrain from saying clichéd praise. Against the negative ratings for the holiday, I am in a negative mood enough to pass them. But I will express some personal impressions with the idea of seeing the spirituality of this brightest day. I recently happened to have an attitude on an interesting point.
Why do so many Czech intellectuals become involved in the cultural life of Bulgaria immediately after the Liberation (1878)? And why Czechs, not Austrians, Germans, Hungarians, French, English, Americans?
I think that in order to be intellectually interested in someone from Bulgaria (or from any other country) one has to feel that country in some way. Proximity in intellectual communication is always achieved primarily on the basis of language - in this case the closeness between the Czech and Bulgarian languages, especially pronounced and emphasized in the different dialects and Old Bulgarian. So, when an intellectual comes from a purely intellectual (scientific) interest, it is because he feels attracted to the Bulgarian, which is close to him. It is easy to guess that from Western countries outside the Balkans, few intellectuals can feel closeness to the Bulgarian language and Bulgarian. We know about the Frenchman Louis Leger, who is doyen in western Slavic studies, but few like him are proficient in Old Bulgarian / Church Slavonic and may feel in "their own waters" when discussing problems of the Bulgarian past (language, folklore, history). There is nothing strange about small countries like ours. Learning Bulgarian is extremely difficult for a foreigner who has little to do with it. This is the reason, for example, that Swedish, Norwegian and Dutch intellectuals are ignorant about specific Bulgarian intellectual issues, and vice versa - Bulgarian intellectuals are ignorant about the narrowly specialized scientific topics of these countries.
Whereas, if people related in any way to the humanities come from countries close to Bulgaria in terms of language - to take Serbia, Croatia or Russia, for example - they can always seek and express what they have in common with ours. One Stefan Verkovich, an undergraduate, a monastic novice from a poor Bosnian family, went to Macedonia, collected Bulgarian folk songs and released them in Serbian, a year ago. Miladinovi brothers to release their Bulgarian folk songs. Earlier, Yuri Venelin was already engaged in collecting Bulgarian folk art in our lands. Victor Grigorovich is responsible for the discovery of medieval Bulgarian written monuments (Ohrid Gospel, Mariinsky Gospel, etc.). Today, the tradition of the Bulgarian interest in Slavic-speaking foreigners is continued. Some time ago I attended a scientific conference on the occasion of which I met two young part-time teachers who came from Serbia and Croatia to teach their native language at the University of Plovdiv. Both intended to write dissertations comparing common lexical aspects between Serbo-Croatian (Serbian and Croatian) and Bulgarian. They have quickly grasped the closeness between their spoken language and ours and want to express it scientifically.
There is no cultural or linguistic barrier for the mentioned people - they were originally educated in Bulgarian. They come here to look for something that is close to them and with which they are at least partially acquainted, they find it, and that is what benefits science and benefits us all today. This is not how the various Western intellectuals and travelers who ended up in the Bulgarian lands react. And not because Westerners from the "developed" countries necessarily dislike Bulgarian (one Lamartine, let's say, is very well situated to us), just that kinship in language always creates a form of closeness, and the absence of such closeness puts an invisible barrier between people. And so that the Bulgarian people and the other people close to him can preserve and spread their closeness in time, so that the close people can recognize each other through the written word - this is the responsibility of the holy brothers Cyril and Methodius.
This is what we are celebrating at 24 May: the ability to acquire our own image, ie his own education in his native Bulgarian language. Cyril and Methodius accomplish the great goal of speaking the spoken language of the vast Slavic community in time. Thanks to the holy brethren, the common language of so many people is preserved to this day, but most importantly, this language receives its educational value.
What does educational value mean?
It is very important to understand and comprehend, otherwise one risks saying a lot of nonsense on the subject. For example, I have heard comments of the sort: what so much did Constantine the Philosopher do, added a few letters to other ready-made etc. Graphic and character systems have a lot, how much one needs to adapt one to one's needs (to the Slavs), here are some today write in latin in social networks etc.
In order to receive an educational value for a language, the graphic system that depicts it must have acquired the 'ability' to educate. To put it simply, the graphic system must portray something very clever, meaningful, educational, impactful, arousing the imagination that unlocks the artistic endowment of the individual. This graphic system must be based on literature that has existed in our time. And then this graphical system becomes literacy. Literacy is not a sign of barrels and pitfalls, but a symbolism of human sensuality and spirituality. Let anyone who claims that there were other scripts based on their native language in Bulgaria and in the Bulgarian lands, should say the title of at least one literary work from that script. There is no such work and no such writing. Because the holy brothers Cyril and Methodius are the Bulgarian, and of the other Slavic peoples, the first teachers. It is our duty today, knowing all this, to value and honor them. Cyril and Methodius are able to realize the idea of their loved ones to recognize each other not only by their speech, but also by their literacy.
Due to the success of this idea, we are celebrating the Day of Slavic Literacy and Culture today. Because this success is the prerequisite of all that today we call Bulgarian education. Thanks to them, and to their students, the spoken language of the vast Slavic community was able to be preserved, becoming one of the first languages of literature, culture and art in all human history.