L’art (cours de philosophie)

Cours de philosophie sur l'art.
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L’expression de soi à travers l’art est simultanée à l’existence humaine; un regard jeté sur les murs des grottes de l’homme primitif est une preuve que l’humain a un besoin universel de l’art.

Ci-contre, un cours de philosophie de l’art:

The power of stories 1

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Contrary to common beliefs that technology and machines being the ultimate impact on populations, stories make the world go ’round and round. Mythologies, religions, legends still have the same power on us like they did centuries ago. That being said, what is their source of power? And how did they evolve?

In ancient times, myths and legends were of oral traditions. A story teller, with highly distinctive talents, would tell a story in front of a crowd. Stories were then a collective activity. The force of a story could be found in both the orality and the collective activity.

When a story is told orally by a story teller, it enhances human faculties such as awareness, imagination, concentration, listening; and for the smarter ones, critical thinking. However, since the mass was not educated, these stories became their system of beliefs which Karl Gustav Jung referred to as the Collective Unconsciousness. In addition to all the above, the fact that story telling was a collective activity, it encouraged sociability and interaction between people.

How had things changed with the invention of the printing machine?

La conscience (Cs) garantit-elle l’autonomie du sujet?

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Il est communément admis que la conscience (Cs) est ce qui définit l’homme et ce qui serait une garantie de son autonomie. Cependant, l’on se demande parfois pourquoi on n’est pas libre, pourquoi on a des addictions, pourquoi on n’arrive pas à dépasser certains traumatismes etc. Ces questions ne remettent-elles pas en question la corrélation de la Cs et de l’autonomie du sujet?

Ci-contre, un plan de dissertation dont la question est: La Cs garantit-elle l’autonomie du sujet?

In and out of yoga

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It is said that the relationship with the mat is the same like the relationship to life. Some days we love life and some others, a lot less. So, it is not strange to be in and out of yoga, and I mean by yoga here is the physical yoga or asanas.

I have much respect to disciplined yoga students with daily practice. But I am not disciplined and this attitude of mine made me wonder and ask questions here and there. As a skeptic myself, I thought something was wrong with me. However I came into a deep realization.

Yoga is not only a workout as it has been marketed on social media as I have written about it on a previous post The IG Yoga. Yoga is made of my many paths to enlightment and Hatha yoga or asanas is one of them.

Looking closely at my behaviour, I noticed that yoga makes one connected to the universe. When my connectivity to the universe weakens due to daily life hassles, I feel it in my body which makes me unroll my mat and practice.

Le temps

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Nous sommes formés de temps et par le temps. L’être humain conscient s’inscit dans l’historicité de par sa conscience qui fait du temps un élément majeur dans la vie de l’homme. C’est la raison pour laquelle l’homme a créé la montre, l’horloge, l’emploi de temps, les fuseaux horaires etc. Cette historicité spécifique à l’humanité a permis la conscience de la finitude ou de la mort. L’homme sait qu’il est un être pour la mort comme disait Heidegger. Il voit ses conséquences sur les transformations de son visage, de son corps, sur les autres et les choses de la nature et du monde. D’où le fantasme humain de remonter le temps ou de le suspendre, d’en effacer ses traces sur le corps et sur les choses, de travailler pour allonger l’espérance de vie et ce jusqu’à l’immortalité. L’arbre de l’immortalité n’était-il pas le deuxième arbre interdit à Adam et Eve?

Maitriser le temps, c’est devenir Dieu!

Alors comment concevoir le temps? Est-il cyclique ou linéaire et téléologique? Est-il malgré notre conception majeure du temps relatif? Le temps est-il objectif ou subjectif?

Vous trouverez ci-contre un cours sur les différents concepts du temps pour essayer de répondre brièvement à ces questions:

The 20th century, the revenge.

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Atrocities everywhere: Afghanistan, the Middle East, climate change, cancel culture, violence, crisis on a global scale raise the question and skepticism about liberal democracies, New World Order, international organizations, multinationals, capitalism and in general, world politics and economics.

Are we forever stuck in the 20th century?

Main ideas and global political systems are still the same but with different tools. However, the world is in a new era. Logically speaking, using the same old methods for new encounters can only lead to the same mistakes but more complicated.

The 21st century, as aforementioned, has different problems, some of them are residue of the 20th century ideas and systems, a sort of continuum of the same disasters. Other issues are purely 21st century made. Isn’t it time to find new solutions before there is no turning back? Isn’t it time to create new fair systems of social justice?

The power of sunset.

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It is always here transiting from day to night. Sunset is that time of the day where confusion is here. The day is not over yet and the night isn’t very far. . Angst is the feeling accompanying sunset.

Romantics love sunset. It is a period of softness with warm colours stretching out there everywhere. Sunset is the perfect time for a friends’ gathering before everyone goes home. One must keep busy during sunset since loneliness, at sunset, provokes anxiety and loneliness.

Sunset is psychologically more impactful than dawn although both are transitional periods. Whilst dawn is a daily rebirth and awakening, sunset is a reminder of aging, of a dying before darkness sets in.

J-P Sartre: La conscience est intentionnalité

La conscience et le monde sont donnés d’un même coup : extérieur par essence à la conscience, le monde est, par essence, relatif à elle. C’est que Husserl voit dans la conscience un fait irréductible qu’aucune image ne peut rendre. Sauf, peut-être, l’image rapide et obscure de l’éclatement. Connaître, c’est « s’éclater vers », s’arracher à la moite intimité gastrique pour filer, là-bas, par-delà soi, vers ce qui n’est pas soi, là-bas, près de l’arbre et cependant hors de lui, car il m’échappe et me repousse et je ne peux pas plus me perdre en lui qu’il ne se peut diluer en moi : hors de lui, hors de moi. Est-ce que vous ne reconnaissez pas dans cette description vos exigences et vos pressentiments ? Vous saviez bien que l’arbre n’était pas vous, que vous ne pouviez pas le faire entrer dans vos estomacs sombres et que la connaissance ne pouvait pas, sans malhonnêteté, se comparer à la possession. Du même coup, la conscience s’est purifiée, elle est claire comme un grand vent, il n’y a plus rien en elle, sauf un mouvement pour se fuir, un glissement hors de soi ; si, par impossible, vous entriez « dans » une conscience, vous seriez saisi par un tourbillon et rejeté au-dehors, près de l’arbre, en pleine poussière, car la conscience n’a pas de « dedans » ; elle n’est rien que le dehors d’elle-même et c’est cette fuite absolue, ce refus d’être substance qui la constituent comme une conscience. Imaginez à présent une suite liée d’éclatements qui nous arrachent à nous-mêmes, qui ne laissent même pas à un « nous-mêmes » le loisir de se former derrière eux, mais qui nous jettent au contraire au-delà d’eux, dans la poussière sèche du monde, sur la terre rude, parmi les choses ; imaginez que nous sommes ainsi rejetés, délaissés par notre nature même dans un monde indifférent, hostile et rétif ; vous aurez saisi le sens profond de la découverte que Husserl exprime dans cette fameuse phrase : « Toute conscience est conscience de quelque chose. » […] Que la conscience essaye de se reprendre, de coïncider enfin avec elle-même, tout au chaud, volets clos, elle s’anéantit. Cette nécessité pour la conscience d’exister comme conscience d’autre chose que soi, Husserl la nomme intentionnalité.

Jean-Paul Sartre, « Une idée fondamentale de la phénoménologie de Husserl : l’intentionnalité », Situations [1947], Gallimard, 2010, p. 10-11.?

Four books by Friedrich Nietzsche you should read

Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) was a German philosopher and one of the most influential of all times. He is considered as one of the first existentialists philosophers and his books are still widely read and discussed. Let’s take a look at his most important works, highly recommended to be read:

Thus Spoke Zarathustra

Very much inspired by Jesus’s parables like way of speaking, this book is the most representative of Nietzsche’s philosophy and vision. In it, one would find  the issue of the death of God and Superhuman appearance.

On the Genealogy of Morality

Nietzsche discusses various concepts of ethics, morality and religion. His idea is to reject the “slave morality” and adopt the Superhuman way of thinking.

Ecce homo

It is the autobiography of Nietzsche, written little before he became ill. He examines his life and his work, an intimate intake on his conceptual and beliefs system.

The Birth of Tragedy

Nietzsche describes life as tragic and music is the correlation of the existential tragedy and aesthetics. This book is a profound essay on art as intertwined with life.

David Hume on thoughts and perceptions (original text)

“But setting aside some metaphysicians of this kind, I may venture to affirm of the rest of mankind, that they are nothing but a bundle or collection of different perceptions, which succeed each other with an inconceivable rapidity, and are in a perpetual flux and movement. Our eyes cannot turn in their sockets without varying our perceptions. Our thought is still more variable than our sight; and all our other senses and faculties contribute to this change; nor is there any single power of the soul, which remains unalterably the same, perhaps for one moment. The mind is a kind of theatre, where several perceptions successively make their appearance; pass, re-pass, glide away, and mingle in an infinite variety of postures and situations. There is properly no simplicity in it at one time, nor identity in different; whatever natural propension we may have to imagine that simplicity and identity. The comparison of the theatre must not mislead us. They are the successive perceptions only, that constitute the mind; nor have we the most distant notion of the place, where these scenes are represented, or of the materials, of which it is compos’d”.

DAVID HUME, A Treatise of Human Nature (1739), Book I: Of the understanding, Part IV: Of the sceptical and other systems of philosophy, Section VI: Of Personal Identity

P.S: Don’t forget to check on my blog, in Portfolio, my philosophy free teaching documents, published on every Saturday in July.


Baruch Spinoza on God

In the Ethics, Spinoza directly challenged the main tenets of Judaism in particular and organised religion in general:

– God is not a person who stands outside of nature

– There is no one to hear our prayers

– Or to create miracles

– Or to punish us for misdeeds

– There is no afterlife

– Man is not God’s chosen creature

– The Bible was only written by ordinary people

– God is not a craftsman or an architect. Nor is he a king or a military strategist who calls for believers to take up the Holy Sword. God does not see anything, nor does he expect anything. He does not judge. He does not even reward the virtuous person with a life after death. Every representation of God as a person is a projection of the imagination.

– Everything in the traditional liturgical calendar is pure superstition and mumbo-jumbo

However, despite all this, remarkably, Spinoza did not declare himself an atheist.

The unprecedented desire for routines

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It is understandable that, in shaky situations, one would like to stick to a routine, any routine, for the sense of security and survival. This is why social media is full of videos, podcasts and posts on routines and practices and this tendency skyrocketed since the beginning of the pandemic.

However is it beneficial?

Neurologists explain that the brain functions in patterns. Once an activity becomes regular, the brain takes it as a pattern and forces the person to do it regularly. Hence the feeling of guilt or confusion in missing the regular habit.

Does it mean that we all must be doing yoga, meditation, daily workouts, journaling, drinking lemon water every morning etc.?

Although the above-mentioned practices are beneficial and recommended, it doesn’t mean every person should be doing them. Maybe one hates journaling, must they force themselves to do it? Maybe one feels uncomfortable with yoga or something else, should they do it in spite of it all?

The answer is no. A routine is a personal (sometimes collective) chosen activity for security, pleasure, health etc. or for any enhancement that leads to a better survival.

The problem when something so private becomes a mainstream on social media, it is highly misunderstood or unproperly applied.

P.S: Starting the 1st of July and for every Saturday of the month, I will publish free philosophy teaching documents. You can find them on my main blog page in “Portfolio”.

Platon: “Le poète est une chose légère”.

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“De la même façon, c’est la Muse qui par elle-même rend certains hommes inspirés et qui, à travers ces hommes inspirés, forme une chaîne d’autres enthousiastes. Car ce n’est pas en vertu de la technique, mais bien en vertu de l’inspiration et de la possession que tous les poètes épiques, j’entends les bons poètes épiques, récitent tous ces beaux poèmes. Et il en va de même pour tous les poètes lyriques, les bons poètes lyriques ; tous ceux qui sont pris du délire des Corybantes n’ont plus leur raison lorsqu’ils dansent, les poètes lyriques n’ont plus leur raison lorsqu’ils composent leurs chants si beaux. Dès qu’ils sont entrés dans l’harmonie et le rythme, ils sont possédés par le transport bachique, et ils sont comme les bacchantes qui puisent aux fleuves le miel et le lait lorsqu’elles sont possédées et quand elles n’ont plus leur raison, exactement comme le fait l’âme des poètes lyriques, selon leur propre aveu. Car c’est bien là ce que nous disent ces poètes, que c’est à des sources de miel, dans certains jardins et vallons des Muses, qu’ils puisent les chants pour nous les apporter à la façon des abeilles, en volant comme elles. Et ce qu’ils disent est vrai. Car le poète est une chose légère, ailée et sacrée, qui ne peut composer avant d’être inspirée par un dieu, avant de perdre sa raison, de se mettre hors d’elle-même. Tant qu’un homme reste en possession de son intellect, il est parfaitement incapable de faire œuvre poétique et de chanter des oracles’.

Platon, Ion, 533d-543b

N.B: A partir du 1e Juillet et pour tous les samedis du mois, vous trouverez sur la page principale de mon blog, dans la rubrique “Portfolio” des cours de philosophie gratuits.

The new normal

TOPSHOT-BRITAIN-HEALTH-VIRUS
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This new concept is everywhere now, underpinning new behaviours, new reflexes, new apprehensions and a new way of life. The so called “new normal’ is a normal reaction to an aftermath.

Knowing this fact, why to hate the new reality?

Reality is a complex concept. The etymology is Latin, res, which means “thing” (for example, the word republic comes from res publica, public thing. A dictatorship calling itself a republic is a contradiction of words). Therefore, reality is the state of things as they actually exist, as opposed to an idealistic notion of them.

Zooming in, it is clear that reality is made of different layers: social reality, political reality, public reality, personal reality, environmental reality, individual reality and so on. A repetitive collective action defines the norm or what is normal or abnormal. Wearing a mask has become a new normal as a planetary and an individual repetitive action due to the birth of a new layer: the pandemics.

This powerful new layer threatens all the other ones. Consequentially, new behaviours and ways of thinking and living have already taken place.

Is our life better or worse now? 

So far, we hate it. Humans are creatures of habits and rituals and the latter played a major role in cultural and social cohesion as well as in cultural differentiation throughout history of mankind. It goes for our safety, our sanity and our survival. Even our cells are units of habits. What is a disease other than a disruptive phenomenon in the genetically programmed organism?

The problem is, humans are not their cells. They are their own minds, emotions and desires. Only a human mind can be in denial of an actual threat while an organism can’t be so.

Modern philosophy defined humans as rational beings but we are not or at least not all the time.

We seek pleasure and we fear pain. We function by reward and punishment. If we were only rational, we wouldn’t be depressed facing the new normal.

If ever the pandemics would disappear forever, its consequences on the different layers of the world reality will remain. The new normal will eventually become the normal.

 

Writing… and why I stopped it for a while

Writing is about inventing something new, as in a life, an existence, a becoming. For the becoming is creativity, a change, becoming other, creating hope for us in this world we live in. Art, philosophy, mysticism have a responsibility: the becoming of our societies!

I wrote this small paragraph the day I started this blog in June 2016, about philosophy in simple words or light philosophy, about philosophical writings for everyone with a purpose: to make myself heard, to make the romantics like me heard, to make misfits heard, to make anyone who doesn’t agree with the mainstream heard. Unfortunately, since 2016 the world hasn’t altered much, not to say it has gotten crazier. The becomings I mentioned earlier which we can see are about crisis: wars, violence, poverty, migration, racism etc. Something that made me stop writing for a long time, just because, as Charles Bukowski said it, if writing doesn’t roar out of your soul then don’t write. I found this video with his voice about being a writer:

http://youtu.be/F_1EiVab_08

It just roared now… and I don’t know why it did. I wish my writing desires would be more roaring but I am on those silent writers, and this can only make sense to writers who can go for a long time without any inspiration. If writing is inventing something new, today I didn’t invent anything, I didn’t write. The word, that precise word is yet to come!

I wish you all a lot of boredom

Placeholder ImageI am sitting in front of the blank screen, thinking about writing. It has been like this for the last 2 days but, all of a sudden, my mind has become as blank as this screen. No words, no images, no thoughts… nothing but a quite peaceful emptiness! Only one questions kept on lingering: what to write? What to write?

This is the experience of everyone of us, the experience of the missing word. And we can’t stand silence easily for it makes us unease. With social media in reach, media, news, explosions, celebrations, discussions, debates, loads of writing and posting, the world is talkative and noisy, too exposed and too exposing. Where one is forced to give an opinion, to protest, to cry, to laugh, to ask, to answer, to speak..is where silence is unbearable! For silence is the luxury of boredom!

Boredom is troublesome because it makes our mind wander. Martin Heidegger pointed out that boredom makes us reach the being! In a more simple language, boredom makes us think about the core, about the substantial: life, love, movements, actions, feelings, death, loved ones, hate, beauty, ugliness, freedom, justice, sex…. Boredom makes us think about the existence… about the being!

I wish you all a lot of boredom!

How the War Made Wittgenstein the Philosopher He Was ‹ Literary Hub

A century ago, Ludwig Wittgenstein changed philosophy forever.

Wittgenstein’s field of interest is mainly language, communication, and the truth behind people’s interactions and understanding each other’s.

He said “What we can’t tell, should kept silent”; something to remind us the limit of language and the limit of the world.

In his quest for limits, he decided to enrol in the WWI to experience life when faced to death and that changed him for good.

This article describes the troubled and troubling thinker that he is and the main ideas of his theory:

“How the War Made Wittgenstein the Philosopher He Was ‹ Literary Hub” https://lithub.com/how-the-war-made-wittgenstein-the-philosopher-he-was/

What is the difference between innovation and creativity?

The terms “creativity” and “innovation” are frequently used interchangeably. While there is some overlap between them, they are distinct. It’s critical to comprehend and implement this distinction in your innovation strategy. The act of inventing something new, whether it’s a variant on a theme or something entirely new, is known as creativity. The act of […]

What is the difference between innovation and creativity?