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!

The life of X

 

“My name is X, X like the unknown in an algebra equation. I suck my thumb, playing with my hair and diagnosed with intellectual obesity. Lonely in this world but not lonesome, I have numerous friends but isn’t all ephemeral?” X kept telling herself this.

“X”, a beautiful letter, almost a piece of art, but is called the unknown. Why aren’t A, B or other letters called the unknown? “I was born X and I dream to become a whole word, a meaningful beautiful smart word. But I don’t do anything. I am always sitting on lines, flying towards the sky, above the world as I am still and motionless. I scare them all, I know them all, me the unknown, ironically the most known of the unknowns. I shall become visible one day”. Paradoxical daydreams, X’s desire to free from the linguistic curse, decided one day to move out from its paper and flew to find Y, the other unknown. X+Y became an item, not a word. They realized quickly that in a noisy loud speaking world, words are useless. Sentences and texts are time and energy consuming. What to add more to a talkative world? How to become visible? Visuals, symbols, signals. Binary codes! That’s the answer! So X and Y ruled the world, transforming themselves into silent codes, coding our daily life, from genetics to clothing, from finances to cybernetics, from religions to nutrition. The story of giants. Only recognizable to the connoisseurs.

X and Y were always there in our subconscious. The desire to survive by knowing and solving the unknown led X and Y, our subconscious fears and dreams, to construct a predictable world, like never before in history. Codes, algorithms, equations, formulas, X and Y and others signs lead us all. Survival instinct becoming conscious, communicable through language, different languages, grammar, emojis we created the cold monster and the monster will eat us, masticating our minds.

X is immortal. From being written on boards and papers to overruling our systems, the life of X is quite a journey that most of us stupidly ignore, being totally absorbed by the system.

On transhumanism

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#philosophy #ethics #transhumanism

Recently I read Origin by Dan Brown. Not only I am a big fan of Brown’s novels where I get to learn a lot about art, religion and symbols while being caught up in a great thriller, but also this time he wrote about the evolution of humans which made me think about transhumanism.

Transhumanism is a theory that the human race will evolve beyond its current physical and mental limitations thanks to science and technology. It is a philosophical movement that wants to realize the dream of mankind: immortality, or the efforts to stave off aging and death already found in mythology and history like the Epic of Gilgamesh, the Fountain of youth and the Elixir of life etc. The early transhumanist thinking started with scientists in early 1920s such as J.B.S Haldane in UK who was interested in applying scientific technology on human biology to enhance the latter in terms of health and intelligence. Nowadays, the growth of transhumanism and artificial intelligence can be seen in industrial developed countries such as the U.S. and in some other parts of the world where robotics, cyberculture, nanotechnology are thriving. Hundreds of articles and seminars on transhumanism can be found on the net and to be honest, it is as much interesting as scary.

Interesting to discover evolutions and revolutions of science and technology and how much efforts are deployed daily alongside hard work and innovations. I can’t help showing my respect for all of them; it is admirable to see how great we humans are when we want to do good and big. Scary, because…where are we going ??? Transhumanism, the everlasting fantasy of every single person to reach immortality, raises a lot of ethical questions regarding tolerance, religion, further discrimination in social classes, the future and so on and on. Should we then fight it or accept it? Should I for example accept to insert a chip in me to enhance my faculties or not? Should I be able to manipulate genes to have a flawless baby? and what is flawless? Who sets the standards? On the other hand, what will happen to a baby who didn’t have the chance to be genetically modified, on both social and psychological level? How do we evolve as a specie with all these modifications? Will we become a different specie? Do we have the right, in the name of ethics and beliefs to stop the evolution of science?

I don’t have a clue on how to answer these questions. Like facing every big innovation, questions and protests raise; no one wants to be in the unknown. One thing is clear: we will not be the same specie, I only hope our becomings will be slow paced.

The history of dieting

http://the dieting dilemma

Our constant obsession with dieting led me to think it is a contemporary issue. With abundance and gluttony came obesity and diseases. Who to blame? Monetary societies and increasing production or our lost common sense? IF or intermittent fasting now so trendy, has been around since the dawn of humanity. Did we lose our reminiscence along side our will of power and reason? Eating is the only lonesome pleasure. Linked to our emotions, food is intertwined with our social persona and with our subjectivity. Has it always been like this or is obesity a symptom of our time? The latter was my idea on the subject. I decided then to do some research and to my surprise I found the following:

One of the first dietitians was the English doctor George Cheyne. He himself was tremendously overweight and would constantly eat large quantities of rich food and drink. He began a meatless diet, taking only milk and vegetables, and soon regained his health. He began publicly recommending his diet for everyone suffering from obesity. In 1724, he wrote An Essay of Health and Long Life, in which he advises exercise and fresh air and avoiding luxury foods.
The Scottish military surgeon, John Rollo, published Notes of a Diabetic Case in 1797. It described the benefits of a meat diet for those suffering from diabetes, basing this recommendation on Matthew Dobson’s discovery of glycosuria in diabetes mellitus.[11] By means of Dobson’s testing procedure (for glucose in the urine) Rollo worked out a diet that had success for what is now called type 2 diabetes.
The first popular diet was “Banting”, named after the English undertaker William Banting. In 1863, he wrote a booklet called Letter on Corpulence, Addressed to the Public, which contained the particular plan for the diet he had successfully followed. His own diet was four meals per day, consisting of meat, greens, fruits, and dry wine. The emphasis was on avoiding sugar, sweet foods, starch, beer, milk and butter. Banting’s pamphlet was popular for years to come, and would be used as a model for modern diets. The pamphlet’s popularity was such that the question “Do you bant?” referred to his method, and eventually to dieting in general. His booklet remains in print as of 2007.
The first weight-loss book to promote calorie counting, and the first weight-loss book to become a bestseller, was the 1918 Diet and Health: With Key to the Calories by American physician and columnist Lulu Hunt Peters.

Only to mention the modern ones, but dieting existed since forever. Siddhartha Buddha was one of the pioneers of vegan diets for spiritual purposes. Cleopatra ate light cheese, fruit and vegetables, nuts and fish. The list goes on and on. If our ancestors, and not all of them obviously, wanted to lose weight in societies that were not as abundant as ours, then the common ground between now and long ago is gluttony, probably the essence of human nature. When Buddha proclaimed that all problems have one source and that is desire, he was not that wrong after all. Gluttony, or overeating is linked to survival of the individual; whereas orality is our first ways of knowing and discovering the world. It is not by chance that Freud turned it into a complex: the oral stage. According to Freud, a person who is fixated at the oral stage, for example, may be over-dependent on others, and may seek oral stimulation through smoking, drinking, or eating. My question is: are we all fixated at the oral stage? perhaps since the dawn of humanity? Aren’t we all over-dependent, smokers, drinkers and eaters? Anorexia then appears so strange: it is transforming the body into a “body without organs” as Gilles Deleuze describes it. Anorexia is a refusal of social consumerist behaviors. Without cheering anorexia, I do believe that in consumerism as a social ideology, anorexia is a revolution… but a deadly one. Shut down the body! Shut down desire! Shut down gluttony! Hello life.. but not through food. It is another form of asceticism. In all cases, we only function by desire, that’s the only certainty… and judgements are so relative!

We are only desire beings!

Scratching on paper or… typing on keyboard?

#philosophy #books #writing #blogwriting #writers

Although being a technology lover, in writing I love Paper! Call me old fashioned, there is no comparison hold between writing on paper and typing on computer. They are two different writing experiences to me and I am trying to figure out why.

There is somehow a connection between the writing hand, the reading eyes, the hearing ears of the scratching pen, the touching hand of the paper, all this and the brain, emotions, sensitivity. Strange enough I can’t feel it this way when I am typing just like I am doing now. By the way, I am thinking about the whole process right now as I am typing. Somehow I am more rational on my PC, whereas I am more creative pen writing words, scratching curved letters and adjusting my handwriting, although nobody would read it but me. I think in comparison to the conventional writing method (I just hated myself now saying this) that computers, just like any machine is cold. It is an impersonal way of writing or drawing or making music or any activity of this sort. This doesn’t mean that there are no creative artists out there who do it all through computers and softwares but I am just talking about the process. The intimacy is lost with the computer. Although being just a tool, computers turned us into bureaucrats in a way. Staring at a screen, unsmellable, untouchable in its core, no dancing hand in shaping letters. What goes for writing, goes for reading. Reading a paper version book is not the same as reading it on a tablet. Very practical indeed but lifeless. Somehow again, we lost our memory because of smart tablets, that outsmart us actually. I remember back in the old days, when we use to write down phone numbers or manually save them on our phones, I used to memorize them. Same for books. Feeling guilty about trees in spite of what I said and about to say: I buy books, I buy notebooks, I use pens and pencils and I can’t function otherwise. Do you feel the same about this duality of the writing/reading experience? Or am I losing my mind? Would love to hear from you 👇

Traffic jam wisdom: epic!

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I’m stuck in a traffic jam, who isn’t? A traffic jam, one of the most stupid consequences of urban modern life, what a waste of time and energy. Is there any good out of it? Hardly any! The idea of standing still when I must run, is inevitable. What can we do in a constant growing world where queuing and waiting are fate? Each one of us is losing their vital space! And we breed! We breed to conquer what’s left of empty lands. We breed like no tomorrow! You just have a kid? Congratulations and welcome to the forced immobility in a fast world! We are living in a paradox! The beauty in being daily in a traffic jam is, once the frustration is under control because one must learn how to master stress, deep thinking kicks in and some dreaming to, it all depends on the music.

Music: switching from one radio station to another, I couldn’t help asking myself this question: what on hell is happening to music these days? So we are submitted to nonsense commercial music, that is without any damn identity? That mix of cheap latino, not even the good latino, with the same repetitive beat, even Madonna is on it now! Please, I can’t recognize the artist singing, they all sound exactly the same! Isn’t it strange, that in a world free as never before, its four corners connected restlessly, isn’t it strange and shameful to end up listening to this crap? Music with no identity, artists with no identity, and making money and achieving, is our responsibility. Thank God for Bohemian rhapsody the movie, it brought back Queen on radio stations. “The show must go on” Freddie and I are screaming on the top of our lungs right now… it managed to put a smile on my face!

People: in between rare good songs and a lot of bad ones, I look around to other people stuck like me in their cars. Anyone who live in a crowded city knows what I am talking about. People.. and the expression on their faces: boredom? maybe.. despair? maybe.. daydreaming? maybe… frustrated? maybe… happy? maybe… hopeful? maybe… All emotions come up to one single expression! The best part is when I start to imagine what they are talking about, or to write their stories in my mind. “They are a new couple but not that happy together” or “He is single but so rude (I don’t know why) I am sure he works a sale man” or “She is doctor, she doesn’t smoke” etc. Stereotypes can help me go on with my life happy and content with what I have.

Beggars: plenty of them in every city and their number is increasing, they appear during traffic jams to beg for money. They are the invisible people. Nobody look in their eyes. Or let’s say they are all alike. They all look the same. They are the ones without faces. They remind us of life’s cruelty. And we tend to look away when they come closer, even when we decide to help them. Another consequence of urbanization and capitalism: rich become richer, poor become poorer and more in number. So after all, being in a car stuck in a jam is not the end of the world.

Planning: I am constantly planning, specially my daily workouts. Gymoholic or a gym obsessed, who cares, I picture moves, exercices, sets and reps, classes, tools.. Kettlebell is one my all time favorite. One can get creative with it. Perhaps, I am working out in my mind because I am stuck? The lack of movement is hard. Think about all the people who are prisoners, in a small space or in their own bodies: terrible!

Success: it comes to two words: achievement and fulfillment. One can achieve a lot without being fulfilled. As much as one can be fulfilled without achieving much. It all depends on perspective on life. But sometimes, it is hard to tell the difference between achieving and fulfilling. I guess we all like what we are good at. Therefore achieving should make us fulfilled. Sometimes it does and most of the time it doesn’t. Somehow there’s a blurry line between the two states.

That was one hour in the traffic jam for a distance of 20 km. How fair is that? But it helped write a post!

Albert Camus and the problem of absurdity

A bit of Camus never hurts! From the absurdity of life to the meaningless life, Camus asked this question: is life worth living? Therefore is suicide legitimate?

Like Sisyphus, we repeat actions daily believing this is apart of an order or a way to pur happiness whereas life itself has no meaning, no sense, no aim. In the Stranger, my favourite of his books, the narrator kills a man only because there was too much sunlight. Irony of life, Camus died in a car accident, as absurd as life could get, exactly how he defined it in his works. This article below pays tribute to the French icon that he was and it is worth reading and enjoying!

https://blog.oup.com/2019/05/albert-camus-problem-absurdity/#__prclt=iwVJQ0PN