Is anything illogical called madness?

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Indeed it is, mainly in the West but not everywhere. The concept of illogical as the opposite of madness comes from the long philosophical tradition which culprit was in the 18th century, the century of Enlightment and Reason. Then, illogical means irrational, emotional, intuitive, imaginative and any other state of mind or idea that didn’t fill the logical criteria.

However, life is not logical.

If one has to apply logic in their day to day life, it would appear this way: wake up, work, eat, sleep, wake up, work, eat, sleep etc. again and again in the same repetitive actions for the next decades. Taken to this level, life in itself is put aside.

The most beautiful moments happens outside of logic, in moments of foolishness and carelessness. If love has to be seen through the eyes of logic, it would become the most idiotic human experience. Call it madness, love is the most beautiful !

To call madness anything illogical is to step out of life because there is a dimension (if not dimensions endlessly stretched out) beyond logic.

What is a strong will?

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We hear a lot these words. Commonly known as mental strength, a strong will is acting with intentions towards a goal by overpassing inner and outer limits.

Most of the time, inner limits are the real limits whose determination distinguishes a “strong” will from a “weak” one (only if the word “weak” can be an adjective of the will). In other words, it takes decision, discipline and consistency to have a strong will.

But is it really all the work of a free will? Or is it the action of a certain type of will? Maybe is it something deeper?

Perhaps, a “weak” will is a choice of a free will to be irresponsible.

Is intelligence a moral value?

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As always, philosophy is the science of definitions. A philosophical writing, long or short, must include definitions of main concepts so analysis can be possible.

Intelligence is the ability to learn or understand or to deal with new situations. It is the synonymous of reason and logic. Intelligence is also applied to animals, plants, and technological objects (think of smart phone for example).

For a long tradition inherited from Christian catechism, intelligence is referred to as a moral value: an intelligent person is an ethical person; a bad person is not intelligent but clever and cunning. Which leads us to the following question: so a bad person, for a example a criminal, can never be qualified as intelligent no matter how intelligent they can be?

In order to promote ethics, moral values and Good (which is not a bad thing), religions made of intelligence a moral value. However, in its definition, intelligence is cleverness, smartness and cunningness since it is the ability to deal with a situation.

Intelligence is only an intellectual capacity, hopefully to be used for the good of humanity.

2020 the Halloween year

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Worldwide, everyone is wearing a mask; even the Venetian carnival couldn’t imagine it. The eyes without a face syndrome had become synonymous to citizenship. By uncovering the failure of the world medical system, facing a pandemic is a confusion between a patronizing totalitarianism and medical emergency.

Until now, the origin of the pandemic is still unknown. However, what is clear now, it the fault of capitalism in its current form, at least for the last 10 years. When absolutely everything is salable, including people’s health and freedom, then Covid19 did us a great favour in spite of its ugliness. The virus demystified what we thought was the ultimate success. The “phantom of the opera” in its 2020 version.

2020 is the Halloween year: the US presidential elections anyone? The uprise of racism and fanaticism? Decapitation of a history teacher down the street? Corruption? Climate change and pollution?

Wearing masks helped unmasking the perverted political systems.

From Mothers To Witches | Exploring Traditional Female Roles In Literature

Written by Lay Sion Ng @ Issues Under Tissues Chinese Malaysian, American Literature at Osaka University, Japan.   Traditional Female Roles in Literature: An Introduction   In the earliest works of literature, the basic roles of females are frequently determined through their relation to men. The submissive ones were rewarded while the rebellious ones were […]

From Mothers To Witches | Exploring Traditional Female Roles In Literature

Walter Benjamin on mass distraction!

Walter Benjamin (1892-1940) was a German philosopher who committed suicide for not being able to escape under sieged France. The text was below was taken from his books The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction (1936), an essay on cultural criticism on mass reproduction that undervalues the uniqueness of art.

“The mass is a matrix from which all traditional behavior toward works of art issues today in a new form. Quantity has been transmuted into quality. The greatly increased mass of participants has produced a change in the mode of participation. The fact that the new mode of participation first appeared in a disreputable form must not confuse the spectator. Yet some people have launched spirited attacks against precisely this superficial aspect. Among these, Duhamel has expressed himself in the most radical manner. What he objects to most is the kind of participation which the movie elicits from the masses. Duhamel calls the movie “a pastime for helots, a diversion for uneducated, wretched, worn-out creatures who are consumed by their worries a spectacle which requires no concentration and presupposes no intelligence which kindles no light in the heart and awakens no hope other than the ridiculous one of someday becoming a ‘star’ in Los Angeles.” Clearly, this is at bottom the same ancient lament that the masses seek distraction whereas art demands concentration from the spectator. That is a commonplace.

Distraction and concentration form polar opposites which may be stated as follows: A man who concentrates before a work of art is absorbed by it. He enters into this work of art the way legend tells of the Chinese painter when he viewed his finished painting. In contrast, the distracted mass absorbs the work of art. This is most obvious with regard to buildings. Architecture has always represented the prototype of a work of art the reception of which is consummated by a collectivity in a state of distraction. The laws of its reception are most instructive.

The distracted person, too, can form habits. More, the ability to master certain tasks in a state of distraction proves that their solution has become a matter of habit

Reception in a state of distraction, which is increasing noticeably in all fields of art and is symptomatic of profound changes in apperception, finds in the film its true means of exercise”. 

We are tired of this blindness

Modern capitalism has ignored the lessons of history in the ignorant and short-sighted pursuit of individual wealth. See for example the article Economics for the People by economic historian Dirk Philipsen in Aeon magazine, from which I quote at length, due to its eloquence: In preindustrial societies, cooperation represented naked necessity for survival. Yet the […]

We are tired of this blindness

What is Platonic Irony?

What is Platonic irony?  When reading Plato’s dialogues philosophers are often keen to highlight irony within his texts.  Irony, however, is not necessarily what we think of it today.  Rather, Platonic irony is carefully constructed and inserted into the text by Plato himself.  Platonic irony is deeply dialectical in the Socratic sense, since Plato’s literary […]

What is Platonic Irony?

Classic Liberal Thought by John Stuart Mill

The only part of the conduct of any one, for which he is amenable to society, is that which concerns others. In the part which merely concerns himself, his independence is, of right, absolute. Over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign. John Stuart Mill, On Liberty In last week’s post […]

Classic Liberal Thought by John Stuart Mill

The writer’s block exists

The idea behind this title is not the block as a block, since one can write whatever comes to their mind. However, the writer’s block exists in terms of creativity and ideas flow.

In philosophy writing, a block can be undone by starting with definition and analysis of the main concept (or concepts). It ensures a depth of the writing without passing by some ramblings found here and there to add more lines/pages. Added to this, and it is the most important part of a philosophical writing ( whether it is an essay or a dissertation or even an explanation of a text) is the questioning part. That’s the real philosophical exercise; otherwise it will be just a presentation.

Then, one can get inspired from other writers or philosophers in case of a philosophical essay. Perhaps quoting some of their paragraphs or even comparing them to other thinkers/philosophers/writers (all depends on the content to be delivered). Not to forget to keep the questioning going.

In conclusion a writer’s block exists in terms of depth and analysis.