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!

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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!

Summertime… and the living is easy! 10 ways to become happier

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#praticalphilosophy #mentalhealth #selfhelp #wellbeing

It is everywhere on social media: recipes for distressing, for changing thoughts patterns, new ways for well-being, for longtime happiness, for balance. Although these new ideas and tips are crucial for our daily lives – we are all aware of the unbearable stress that we go through and its effect on our mental and physical health – most of those given tips are not as easy to apply as they sound. What they lack in pointing out is the importance of intentions. If the goal is to be healthier, then one must move with intentions, think with intentions and eat with intentions. The latter only comes from an inner will to change; otherwise all tips won’t work, no matter how brilliant they are. Once the inner will and intentions are “activated”, I personally found that summer is the perfect period to try new things and play around with our own thoughts to ditch the old and create a new life.

Summer vacations are all about relaxing for some, moving and travelling for others, discovering new places and meeting new people. More interesting would be meeting new cultures. Nothing compete an eye-opening discussion about everything and nothing, while perspectives on life cross each other’s. Summer is the opportunity to get us thinking outside the box, and play like children do – a wink to Nietzsche’s ubermensch theory, only achieved by “becoming who you are”, that means becoming a child again, joyful and curious. Here are ways to hit the “refresh button” of your mind:

1- Meet new people, the more different, the better. It will widen your thoughts horizon and helps you to make more connections.
2- Meet foreigners. It is always a cultural choc and a mind stimulating exercise to discuss everything, from food, to clothes, to habits, to big ideas.
3- Read a book. Sometimes, nothing matters anymore in presence of a good captivating book. It is a way to unwind and distress and to make a person smarter
4- Visit new places, even in one’s own country. This is a new experience (good or bad) every time it happens. Whether it is the beach, a new pub or a restaurant, a new club, a site seeing, you name it! Enjoy it and come out of it more mature.
5- Go to a museum. A new museum or an old new. Archeology, ancestry, history made us what we are today. It is obviously a way to learn something new.
6- Meditate. This is a higher discipline and a lot of people think that, by closing their eyes and think, they are in meditation. But no, they are not. The 2 keys to meditation are breathing control and concentration. One needs a coach or at least a good book to train them to meditate.
7- Long walks, preferably in nature but if not, then everywhere would be fine.
8- Yoga, to get one conscious and in connection with their body and mind.
9- DIY: painting, knitting, crafting, travel journal etc. anything that makes hands and mind work together to create something new and tangible.
10- Love: your family, your lover, your friends, your work, your pet etc. only love can make a person free and happy.

Here are to me the 10 tips on becoming happier in our skin and around others. Trying to include one of them in a daily routing will help a lot. They are not difficult to achieve but always do it with intentions. You would be surprised on how much you can achieve when you put your heart and your mind to it, in other words, your intentions.

On Anarchism… by Noam Chomsky

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Insightful book about Anarchism and the importance of its serious consideration in politics today. In this essay, Noam Chomsky defines Anarchism as a skepticism about any type of authority which needs to be questioned constantly in order to justify its legitimacy. In other words, any authority that doesn’t justify its actions is not legitimate and therefore should be dismantled or replaced. This book is a wake up call to all people to question themselves first on their blind acceptance of their political structures the way they are. Second, it is a call to read Anarchist philosophers and to be inspired from their actions.

It is crucial to distinguish the American concepts of Anarchism and Liberalism from the European ones. Historically, in Europe, Anarchism is a political movement, spontaneous sometimes, that as aforementioned question authorities and fight for freedom and social justice. European Anarchism is synonymous to Liberalism. Whereas in U.S.A, Liberalism is ultra-conservative and capitalistic, which is the opposite of the original Anarchism. Moreover, the word “anarchy” as chaos was forged from the word “anarchism” by the opponents of the latter to point out its danger. Any authority is scared of Anarchism because Anarchism doesn’t believe in any system unless it is a voluntary organization based on the general will of its people.

To give more objectivity to his speech, Noam Chomsky analyzes some historical events, mainly the Spanish war and others, only to find that the real revolutionary people who wanted to change the world and make it a better place, were all anarchists.

This book is a great read. For the full review please check the link below:

https://www.academia.edu/40028592/On_Anarchism_Noam_Chomsky

Vegan way or the high way!

According to the latest UN statement, we have already used our energy reserves for 2019! Pretty scary that resources are becoming scarcer and it is directly linked to climate change. Therefore, it is not only about recycling and awareness, it is a radical change in our way of life, meaning: less consumption in food and energy, reusing, decluttering and going minimalist. I don’t know how fast we can adapt to this emergency wake up call since we are used to something completely different. And we all know we are creatures of habits and our brain creates patterns to which we respond constantly and, that being said, we love our habits. In a way, veganism seems to be the only option we have so far to save ourselves from a bigger crisis, maybe from multiple catastrophes before we starve or we get burnt. In The Guardian, this article shows how it is a political revolution to go vegan. Tell me what you think about this 👇

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/aug/03/ipcc-land-use-food-production-key-to-climate-crisis-leaked-report?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

Ode to dancing

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The sound vibrates from the heart of the earth all the way to our spine; extend your arms and feel the energy. That same cry of the universe celebrates its birth, and still on lingering intensely through our bodies. OM, life is singing, the sky is thundering, the ocean is roaring and the wind is blowing. Everything moves to the sound of life, from planetary rotations to Sufi whirling, from falling leaves to flitting butterflies. Fast and light, slow and heavy, spinning to party, spinning to pray, spinning to music, this is the highest ode to life. Rumi (Jalal ud-din), the Persian and mystical poet wrote once:

“Stop acting so small. You are the universe in ecstatic motion”.

Sufi spinning is an active form of meditation performed within a worship ceremony. This is sought through abandoning one’s ego or personal desires, by listening to the music, focusing on God, and spinning one’s body in repetitive circles, which has been seen as a symbolic imitation of planets in the Solar System orbiting the sun. The influence of the Persian poet Rumi (Jalal ud-Din) on Sufis is significant. It was his meeting with the dervish Shams-e Tabrizi on 15 November 1244 that completely changed his life. From an accomplished teacher and jurist, Rumi was transformed into an ascetic.
Shams had travelled throughout the Middle East searching and praying for someone who could “endure my company”. A voice said to him, “What will you give in return?” Shams replied, “My head!” The voice then said, “The one you seek is Jalal ud-Din of Konya.” On the night of 5 December 1248, as Rumi and Shams were talking, Shams was called to the back door. He went out, never to be seen again. It is rumoured that Shams was murdered with the connivance of Rumi’s son, ‘Ala’ ud-Din; if so, Shams indeed gave his head for the privilege of mystical friendship. Later, Rumi believed passionately in the use of music, poetry and dance as a path for reaching God. For Rumi, music helped devotees to focus their whole being on the divine and to do this so intensely that the soul was both destroyed and resurrected. It was from these ideas that the practice of whirling Dervishes developed into a ritual form. Rumi wrote:

“The lover’s cause is separate from all other causes
Love is the astrolabe of God’s mysteries”.

If religion, any religion, isn’t of that beauty, then it is not a religion and doesn’t deserve to be one!

Money and spirituality: the old new war!

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#philosophy #spirituality #anarchism

It is about spirituality and not religion, the lesser talked about part in religions, the quest of oneness and connection, the feeling of cosmic love and equality between all beings. Religion on the other hand, is a system of beliefs, of cults, of dogmas and morals, partly spiritual, partly social and political; the latter is better known as religiosity. While money may not be the opposite of religiosity, it is somehow a dilemma to spirituality. Nowadays, the same spiritual thirst is still persisting, the same battle of money making and the search of freedom and fulfillment: machinery and enslavement, behind the illusion of freedom, the illusion of celebrity, the external recognition and the perdition of the inner one.

Money is making so much noise that one becomes deaf. For survival and so much more, for sustainability and power, money is linked to the paradigm of success in modern and actual societies. Simply put, success is about embracing the system: from A+ grades in school to financially enriching majors in universities, to supreme carriers, because all of these are connected, children are sent to schools to be one day on the work market and to fit a social paradigm. So money making, success, carriers are all about obtaining an external power, mainly to protect ourselves form others. Adding to this terminology is the word “job” which is a paid position of regular employment, or a paid task. Synonyms to job are: position of employment, post, assignment and many more that fall into this category of achieving something for money. Observing this situation, one can notice that the enslavement abolishing turned the whole world into a gigantic slave place, accompanied by the endless praise of labor and financial freedom, transforming the world’s sense of freedom from political freedom to civil freedom. Tocqueville noted in 1848 about the working-class:

“It is true that they are less inflamed than formerly by political passions properly speaking; but do you not see that their passions, far from being political, have become social? Do you not see that, little by little, ideas and opinions are spreading amongst them which aim not merely at removing such and such laws, such a ministry or such a government, but at breaking up the very foundations of society itself?”

This observation is being amplified now, people being in appurtenance to smart tools and social media, to opinion invasion all the time, permanently exposed to ideologies and counter ideologies, to news and fake news, added to the stress and constant struggle of jobs problems and scarcity of money, tax payment and the risk of redundancy. It is then natural that many are looking for new ways to cope up, hungry for new horizons culturally and spiritually, since happiness and health being threatened.

Yoga? Meditation? Intermittent fasting? Keto diet? Vegan diet? Or full time blogging, vlogging? Farming? Crafting? Art? An alteration in daily diets for a healthier body, a change of patterns in minds, replacing jobs with work, and a desire for being fulfilled, are all signs for a culture and spiritual hunger. For it is “work” (as different from money targeted jobs) because it is a hobby turned into an activity involving mental or physical effort done in order to achieve a purpose or a result, that is sustainability through fulfillment. Put is simply, the road to happiness is reached through love. And peace through meditation, to change current thinking patterns, and start thinking outside the box; the box being the system or the social paradigm. In other words, it is the quest of inner power (as opposed to the external power of materialistic fortunes and possessions) and core confidence, the quest of physical and mental health (industrial food consumption increased obesity, diseases, and twisted minds), the quest of love for oneself and the universe. Happily ever after, we are all becoming progressively anarchists and that is beautiful!

The Real and its Double… by Clement Rosset

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Clement Rosset is a french philosopher who passed away on march 27th 2018. Student of Louis Althusser, and a contemporary of Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze and many of the poststructuralists. But his philosophy differs from the french theory of that time, being interested in the understanding the Real in its essence and definition rather than being interested in the event as we can see in Deleuze’s works.

The Real is what exists which can be perceived on a phenomenological way and on an empirical state. It exists in one shot, known for its singularity. Therefore, the Real cannot be changed, it is how it is. Being initially out of our total understanding, the human mind will invent doubles of the Real. The Double is our representation of the Real, our fantasy of it, our idea of it, our way to think of possibilities to defer it, the “what if this instead of that” type of thinking, our way to go back in time in our minds by imagining different starts, different plots, different endings. According to Rosset, we live in the Double most of our lives and the ability of bypassing the Real comes from the long tradition of Western metaphysics and psychology. Pinpointing the paradoxes of the theories of Lacan and Derrida, Rosset, inspired by the Spinozist concept of desire as the greatest response to reality, chose the exceptional lucidity that speaks to his Nietzschean-tragic love of life.

Known as the philosopher of joy, Clement Rosset expresses and defines complicated things in a simple way. This book, The Real and its Double is a must read!

On smoking!

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(p.s: I wish I knew the name of the painter!)

A purely human ritual, smoking distinguishes us from animals. According to history, Smoking has been practiced in one form or another since ancient times. Tobacco and various hallucinogenic drugs were smoked all over the Americas as early as 5000 BC in shamanistic rituals. After Europeans arrived in the Americas in the late 15th century tobacco smoking as a recreational activity became widespread. At the banquets of Aztec nobles, the meal would commence by passing out fragrant flowers and smoking tubes for the dinner guests. At the end of the feast, which would last all night, the remaining flowers, smoking tubes and food would be given as a kind of alms to old and poor people who had been invited to witness the social occasion, or it would be rewarded to the servants. Since then, the rest is history, smoking and anti-smoking campaigns coexist. Besides the moral and religious opposition, besides the scientific studies and evidence on linking smoking to serious illnesses, some of us, many of us, are still smoking. Why holding on to a dangerous ancient activity? If so, is smoking an added value to our humanity?
Since 1990s, some smoking defense groups, independent or funded by tobacco companies, have reacted against anti-smoking campaigns, claiming that these new laws are oppressive, which is not completely wrong, in spite of the controversy of that last thought. Smoking free, sugarfree, fatfree, decaffeinated coffee etc. can seem freedom restriction measures. Research implies that the act of smoking generates intimidating impressions, and it has been suggested that individuals of a low socioeconomic status are motivated to smoke by a desire to appear intimidating and forceful, although smoking is not linked to a particular social class. Power, intimidation, recognition, striking ego are purely and strictly human emotions.  Therefore, smoking, vaping, or whatever replacing it will never disappear totally from our societies, it provides pleasure and attitude. In other words, desire and power are the quintessential emotions of the human world, of evolution, even of survival. Unless the fight targets these emotions, which means the mind, no drugs, no cigarettes will be vanish anywhere soon. If only we put more efforts to fight violence, domestic violence against women and children, human traffic, corruption, crimes… the list goes on!

Watch “How to Unlock the Full Potential of Your Mind | Dr. Joe Dispenza on Impact Theory” on YouTube

I watched this video twice. Our thoughts can make us sick as in creating diseases, and they can make us live longer and have a stronger immunity. Dr Joe Dispenza discusses epigenetic, metacognition, quantum physics applied to the brain and so much more. He emphasizes on the power of meditation to break patterns and thoughts barriers for a joyful life, for productivity, for self empowerment. It is a must watch video 👇

Motivation vs. Inspiration

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#philosophy #selfhelp #personalgrowth

Two words that keep on popping up everywhere now, from self-help advises to personal growth, to fitness, to writing; there is a real buzz and excitement around them, as if they are a sort of a stage or a level to reach in order to get a better life, a better shape, a better health, a better culture, a better writing.. you name it! I came to think that they are somehow overrated, although being important only as a state of mind. This being said, I try to dig deeper into these two words to understand them more and to untangle their respective mechanisms. Then, what is their real meaning? Is there any alteration in our understanding of them? Moreover, why the ongoing excitement around them and fundamentally what do we lack as human beings?

Inspiration. It is the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative, such as a sudden brilliant idea. Longtime being linked to a muse, this idea comes from the Greek and Roman mythology, to which the nine daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne presided over arts and creativity. In modern English, a muse is a person or a certain force/spirit that inspire an artist. Looking closely at the two different definitions, it seems there are two types of inspiration: an outer one, coming from a goddess or a person or a spirit; and an inner one coming from the mind, from the own subjectivity. If we are to adapt the first definition, most of us are doomed, since we are not all artists, and a visit from a creativity oriented force is totally random and aleatory. In this understanding of inspiration, some people/artists are chosen to be visited, maybe because they are brilliant, who knows, the reason of this visit is never clear. But didn’t we adopt this definition precisely to separate ourselves from brilliant awesome creative people? Perhaps the idea of being randomly chosen by a goddess for inspiration isn’t after all recomforting for all of us who don’t want to do the hard work of creativity? Isn’t it in a way our escape from responsibility of deep thinking and sensitivity and hardships, joined to our deepest desire of comfort and ease? Let the genius be a genius and be great, we are not competing with them!

The second definition is on the contrary less random and more “human” in a sense where the idea is triggered from within the mind and developed progressively through hard work. Which makes this process even more difficult because it requires an open mind, an ability to be affected and inspired, an ability to be curious and experimental, different states of mind directly connected to courage and daring. In other words, it requires a change of habits and perspective in order to be inspired. Is the big majority of all of us ready to change their habits, to overcome their beliefs, to let down their traditions, to break free from social molds and to be come a Nietzschean child?

Motivation. A reason for acting or behaving in a particular way, a motive. That also has two main sources: an exterior source and an interior one. The outer reason for motivation is, to cut it short, a desire for recognition: to be a popular writer, to look beautiful, to be successful, to have power etc. The problem with the exterior reason for acting is its shortness in time. It can’t be perpetuated unless it is backed up by the inner one. After the inner inspiration, comes the inner motivation which develops itself more and more during acting constantly. Let’s say, I want to be fit: I will be fitter the more I workout and this doesn’t stop vs. I want to look fit (exteriority and recognition) which can stop the moment I achieve that look. So, what motivates writing is writing constantly; for painting it is painting; for fitness is workout out; for politics is public and social work etc.. Perfection and happiness are found in the action itself.. A wink to Aristotle! To say it differently, self discipline fuels motivation.

Now the same questions remain the same: who is ready to be free and self disciplined? Don’t we prefer our prisons, our daily habits, our comfort to all the unknown? As Spinoza once said it: Why do people fight for their servitude as if it were their salvation?