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Arquivo para a ‘Pintura’ Categoria

The palliative society or the absence of pain

13 Apr

Palliative society explains Byung Chul Han has nothing to do with palliative medicine, as the Korean-German philosopher explains: “Thus, every critique of society has to carry out a hermeneutic of pain. If pain is left solely to medicine, we miss its character as a sign” (Han, 2021).

It reminds us of a saying by Ernest Jünger: “Tell your relationship with pain, and I will tell you who you are!”, so a critical society is not possible without a hermeneutics of pain, the relationship with each suffering not only that produced by history, but that which is in the particularity of each Other.

“Survival society completely misses the point of the good life. Enjoyment is also sacrificed to high health for an end in itself” (Han, 2021, p. 34).

He recalls and quotes Agamben in his vision of homo sacer and via naked: “Without resistance, we subject ourselves to the state of exception that reduces life to bare life” (Han, 2021, idem).

In the palliative society “The art of suffering pain is entirely lost to us… Pain is now a meaningless evil that must be fought with painkillers. As a mere bodily affliction, it falls entirely outside the symbolic order” (Han, 2021, p. 41), emphasis added by the author.

So today, pain is removed from any possibility of expression, it is condemned to remain silent, and “the palliative society does not allow to enliven, to verbalize pain into a passion” (p. 14), emphasis added by the author.

Vargas, Cecília (2018) Systems of Pain/Networks of Resilience project in one gallery. Curated by Cecilia Vargas, Dickson Center at Waubonsee Community College, June 7-July 10th(foto).

HAN, Byung-Chul. (2021) The palliative society: pain today. trans. Lucas Machado. Brazil, Petrópolis: Vozes.

 

 

The Civilization Crisis

23 Nov

It is not just an idea of the apocalyptic, the pessimistic and the tragedies, dark spirits who do not really reflect on reality, it is those who think humanism, who look to a polarized, fragile and powerless life in the face of a pandemic (see Europa in the previous post) is the crisis of fragility that does not see itself as fragile.

Arrogants, pseudo-sages, and pseudo-prophets are on call, but even an optimist like Edgar Morin bends over when he sees a system that cannot deal with its fundamental problems, it disintegrates, thus began his recent lecture on the metamorphosis of humanity, he told the event : “he becomes even more barbaric”, but remember that this is not the first and probably not the last metamorphosis of humanity, we were at the origin (he said for over 100,000 years) hunters and gatherers.

There was no army, no state or classes, but little by little some groups wanted to dominate others, this happened in India, China and the Middle East, in the Andes where an Inca Empire was organized and in Mexico (where he gave the lecture).

These societies have metamorphosed for better or worse, he has not made a statement about this, but he thinks that a metamorphosis over our nation-states is possible.

It states that it is necessary to have hope, but hope is not certainty, the hope that in the past was a belief now, but if hope exists it is the necessary leaven for great transformations, and it is understood that this is the moment we are living this reality, in a postmodern or post-postmodern world, there is a transformation.

It remains for us to know which one leads us to destruction, and which one is truly the bearer of hope, it doesn’t give great tips, but let’s do an exercise.

The first great destruction is war, with the arsenal of ultra powerful weapons, even interplanetary, there are several objects around the planet, it is necessary to defend peace with the same force that we defend justice, a war would now be a catastrophe.

The second major destruction is social imbalance, insecurity and the lack of a sustainable plan for the use of natural resources, the large meetings only discuss the issue of pollution and deforestation in some regions of the planet, when they should discuss the planet as a All in all, nature shows signs of exhaustion and a greater imbalance in natural forces, of planetary proportions, is expected.

As Edgar Morin says, it is necessary to have hope, we have already gone through other stages of the civilizing process through similar situations, of course the proportion is now planetary.

Edgar Morin – Do esgotamento à metamorfose dos sistemas – YouTube

 

 

The cry of the afflicted

04 Nov

In many moments of personal difficulties, world conflicts and natural tragedies, there is always an apparent cry of despair and pain, but our time is a silent cry for those who lose their reason for living, the pandemic has also caused many anguish, loneliness and despair.

The famous pcitura Norwegian Edvard Munch’s The scream represents an androgynous figure in a moment of deep anguish and despair, with the Oslo fjord at sunset in the background, characterizes well what affliction means in our time, in addition to misery and lack of solidarity , the anguish and anxiety of the figure may be the author’s own, the phrase written at the top of the painting: “it could only have been painted by a madman”, analyzed by the Oslo National Museum concluded that it was the author’s.

The aspect of anxiety would remain veiled, were it not for this analysis, since the author stated on one occasion: “I have suffered a deep feeling of anxiety that I have tried to express in my art”, and this reflects our contemporary fears.

GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder) is one of the symptoms of this condition, which can also be bipolar or some other type of lack of control, this type was generically called Neurotic Anxiety, but there are two others: Realistic and Moral.

Realistic anxiety refers to the fear of something existing in the outside world, so a pandemic or a natural catastrophe (hurricane, earthquakes, sudden changes in climate, etc.) is basically a kind of fear of something real happening but that puts us in a different adrenaline.

Moral is the one that refers to the feeling of guilt, which triggers a fear of being punished, and this leads to a situation of conflict in the interior, so the person loses sensitive aspects of their interior: the unconscious threatening to enter the conscious what it means in practice a loss of self-control.

But the afflicted are also the helpless, the abandoned and the rejected by society, the various types of prejudices on which current controversies are born.

In the Christian reading, the text of Matthew (5:4) although some translations put as “afflicted”, the translation we prefer here: “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted!”, because beyond the aspect of “sickness “there is structural evil and social evil that push many people into this state, and blaming them just means adding to any kind of “affliction” the neurotic anxiety that is born of a disproportionate sense of guilt, and this is the great kind of current social pressure.

But what would be the comfort the bible speaks of, the comfort of those who believe is that the only evil they should fear is the soul, so contrary to what many moralistic interpretations say, it is a balanced morality and without the exaggeration of guilt that it leads to an inner state without this kind of anxiety.

 

 

 

The intermittents of death

31 Aug

José Saramago (1922-2010), in addition to his famous bookEssay on Blindness, written in 1995 and which later became a film directed by Brazilian Fernando Meirelles and scripted by Don McKellar, wrote many other novels: O memorial do convento (adapted from an opera), The Gospel According to Jesus Christ, Essay on lucidity, and many others, I highlight here As Intermitências da Morte (2005).

In 1998, he received the Nobel Prize for Literature, but two works seem prophetic for today: The essay on blindness, which we have already posted, and the Intermitências da Morte.

Skeptical and ironic, Saramago did not fail to notice the dramas of our time, but the unexpected way it ends. Lucidity, I would say using the Heideggerian metaphor that clearing is possible if we penetrate the existential drama of life.

In The Intermittencies of Death, he penetrates into the existential dramas of life, as a religious skeptic, he will also mock the outputs with an answer “from above”, that is, transfer to “another world” our permanently mundane dramas, among them, what it’s life itself.

He says in a passage on page 123: “It is possible that only a painstaking education, one of those that is already becoming rare, along, perhaps, with the more or less superstitious respect that in timid souls the written word usually instills, has led readers, although they were not lacking in reasons to manifest explicit signs of ill contained impatience, not to interrupt what we have been reporting so profusely and to want to be told what it is that, in the meantime, death has been doing since the fatal night when it announced the your return.” (in the photo a picture of Gustav Klimt’s painting).

After inquiring in every book about life, something unusual these days, because all you want is a return to frivolity, the normality of emptiness, the absence of life, consumption and false joys, the author will say in end of the book that death is normality, said like this:

“He stayed in his room all day, had lunch and dinner at the hotel. Watched television until late. Then he got into bed and turned off the light. Didn’t sleep. Death never sleeps.” (Saramago, 2005, p. 189).

And he concludes that his common irony in times when the pandemic was not even dreamed of (his pandemic was The Essay on Blindness), he says about death: “(…) I don’t understand anything, talking to you is the same as having fallen into a labyrinth without doors, Now that’s an excellent definition of life, You’re not life, I’m much less complicated than it, (…)” (Saramago, 2005, p. 198). Oh what a pity, a pity even that Saramago had never believed in a true life, this disbelief is also in all his work, especially “The Gospel According to Jesus Christ” (1991), but at least he was not indifferent to the theme, something “bothered him”.

SARAMAGO, José. (2005) The intermittence of death. Brazil, São Paulo: Companhia das Letras.

 

Bliss and beatitude

27 Oct

Although the term is associated with Christian holiness, and is also one of its aspects, the term in classical antiquity had a more generic meaning, a permanent state of perfect satisfaction and fullness that only a wise man could achieve, so thought Aristotle, but today it is conditioned only to the religious sense, it is intended here to show that they can be closer than we think.

The religious meaning is also that of happiness, but in the sense of joy of balanced pleasure of the soul, which can only reach those who enjoy the presence of God, that its fullness can be achieved only in eternal life, but does not mean discarding earthly life, “I have come that everyone may have life, and life in abundance” (John 10:10), so proclaims the evangelist, but what is different between the two proposals for happiness.

Aristotle in the book “Of the causes” will say that the end of beatitude is relative to its desire, so the ultimate nature of this end moves mainly by desire and this is pleasure, so much so that it absorbs man’s will and reason to the point of make other goods despise.

Both Boethius, that the church also beatified him (that is, he proclaimed him happy, blessed and holy), and Aristotle dealt with the theme, and their question is what if pleasure is really the ultimate end of happiness, of beatitude and that it also Tomás de Aquino will argue the contrary.

What Boethius says is that the consequences of pleasures are sad, all those who want to remember their sensualities know it, because, if these could make them happy, there would be no reason why the brutes too would not be considered such, and this is very reminiscent of current cases of abuse and objectionable violence.

For Boethius: “The beatitude is the perfect state of the union of all goods”, and so it seems that through money you can acquire all things, because the Philosopher, in book V of Ethics, says that money was invented for to be the guarantor of everything that man wanted to possess, which today can be translated as money buys everything.

In addition, Boethius also says: “Riches shine more when they are distributed than when they are conserved. For this reason, greed makes men hateful, generosity makes them illustrious ”, and so wealth is not condemned, but its bad distribution.

In the representation above the painting “The cheerful violinist with a glass of wine” (1624) by Gerard van Honthorst (1590-1656).

 

 

Between tragedy and idealism

11 Aug

The big theme during the pandemic, which attracts crowds is happiness, not by chance, since happiness was in everything that is now closed: the mall, the cinema, the houses of orgies and drinking, the simple ecstasy of being in a frenzied crowd for some frivolous reason, after all it is the frivolity that everyone wants to come back, there will be nothing great to penetrate the tragedy of a pandemic, it is necessary to find the culprits and punish them for banishing frivolous life and putting us all in constant tension, in fear and far from simple enjoyment.

Nietzsche wrote about The Birth of Tragedy, and blamed Empedocles for his death, but it was Hölderling who will write about Empedocles’ Death, it was he before Nietzsche who rediscussed the tragedy, and the tragic of the tragedy, in a dialogue with German idealism and that’s when he coined his most famous phrase: “where there is fear there is salvation”, almost in the same vein as Cassius Clay who became Mohammed Ali: “it is the lack of faith that makes people fear challenges”.

The pandemic is none other than the fact of understanding the limits of the human, the persistence of tragedy in our lives and destinies, and the fatality of death, those who never thought of it are those who fear it most now, it is never so close of all, but tragedy is evil, or the false sale of easy happiness, it is in it that the charlatans of philosophy, faith and even science without “label” rely.

The Death of Empedocles, an unfinished play, where Hölderlin worked from 1797 to 1799, in his poetic texts from this period, where he thought about the essence of the tragic is marked by a great antagonism, but above all the unification of antagonism with contradiction, where he makes it clear that the theme should be “the true modern tragedy”, perhaps not during the two tragic wars we face, but now in an endless pandemic.

In his analysis, Empedocles hates civilization, is a mortal enemy of limited human existence, cannot bear to live under time, suffers for not being a god, for not being in close union with the whole, and for a need that stems from his being deeper, I decide to die by throwing myself into the volcano.

He is less of a liar than the real ones of simple formulas for happiness, but tragic that he wants to be a god himself and that he would be more “noble” than to admit a God, killed not by tragedy, but by German idealism, after all from Fichte to Schelling, the great expression that transgresses the limit imposed by Kant on human knowledge, when considering all intuition, that which is sensitive to objects, becomes intellectual intuition and artistic intuition, being able to give an immediate knowledge to the absolute, of possibility revelations that are directed to the whole.

So in the essay “Foundation for Empedocles” says that tragedy is the expression of the “deepest intimate unity” that is exposed by real oppositions, the idea owes not only much to Schelling’s analysis, which defines the Greek tragedy as a reconciling presentation of contradictions of reason, but anticipates the Hegelian view of the tragic poem as a presentation of the “tragedy that the absolute eternally stages with itself”, but the absolute here is vague, ideal. In the “foundation for Empedocles”, Hölderling explains how the harmonious opposition between art and nature takes place, presenting the process by which nature becomes more organic and man, more agorgic, more universal.

The concept of aorgic here is fundamental, and the reading here is by Françoise Dastur “Hölderling, tragedy and modernity” where he defines it as “it is nature without organicity in its infinite uniqueness”.

The organic is the art, which supposes, on the contrary, organization and, therefore, opposition from the parties”.

In the aorgic relationship that can be found the pandemic, the culprit is ultimately the virus, the control of the virus is questionable until you have the vaccine, we were in favor of social isolation and at certain times of #LockDown, however it is in nature devoid of organicity, a virus that until then was foreign to the man who altered it and became hominating, putting the civilizing process in check, and nature seems to fight back what humanity proposed.

Hölderling, Friedrich. (2008) The dead of Empedocles A Mourning-Play.  NY:  State University of New York.

 

 

A pandemic with many outbreaks

13 Jul

Although the large centers, São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro States in particular, registered declines in the number of infected and deaths, the pandemic has internalized and now reaches the innermost part of the country, which includes small poor cities, indigenous villages and regions with little access. Restroom.

The general graph (of deads) shows a stabilization around 1200 daily deaths, but it does not mean the control of the disease, nor any indication of a fall, since the expansion into the interior and deprived areas can cause new explosions, allied to an innacute opens of trades without criteria.

We present the general graph above just to indicate a general graph, since the policy under the responsibility of the regional governments and mayors (it was determined by the STF) does not allow us to say that there is a national policy of combat, although the regional health secretariats communicate and governments make state laws, such as the one that obliges the use of masks, with some regional control.

Another controversial issue is the use of medications, hydroxycloquine, the initial controversy, and now azithromycin, ivermectin and nitazoxanide are not recommended by medical criteria, the drugs in the background are given on a case-by-case basis, for example, for infectious conditions, depressive symptoms or respiratory problems that are acute, but each patient may or may not have conditions that prevent the use of a certain medication.

At the international level, some measures on economic weakness are beginning to be considered, such as helping the unemployed, how to articulate joint action plans between countries, the great example of which is the euro zone.

Preventive measures must continue for a long time, which I prefer to call social distance, because flexibility is already growing and little controllable, wearing masks, maintaining a certain distance in transport, walking even considering that they are done in airy areas are necessary and are part of of the so-called new normality, it is enough to see the countries left the peak.

At the social level, measures to prevent the worsening of the social crisis should be considered in the world.

 

 

The cultural crisis and the pandemic

15 Apr

The second great blindness of the Western crisis is culture, the book Anything Goes by Theodore Dalrymple, pseudonym of english´s psychiatrist Anthony Daniel who treated dangerous prisoners, is an anthology of short stories written from 2006 to 2009, and called his studies declinology (see the video below) but in the book cited there are beautiful passages on how to read a culture. in many countries. 
Since the dawn of human culture, the discovery of the Chauvet Cave (dated 32,000 BC) proves this, man builds and records his culture, and here a parallel with #StayAtHome this is done in a cave, probably a meeting place and protection of families.
It may seem too much the term used by Peter Sloterdijk, but human domestication is nothing other than the structuring of “domestic” life, and also the Greek origin of the word oikos-nomicus (we have already made a post) means oikos – home.

We add here Xenophon’s Socratic dialogue, which refers to the term how to be a good gentleman, Kalokagathos (good in beautiful, in Greek), which is thus a reference to culture.
Byung Chul Han, who wrote Salvação do Belo, where he criticizes the culture of the plain and in particular that of Jeff Koon and his sculptures of “baloons” (figure) that say a lot or nothing, the desire for total immunity, without seeking the co-immunity, concept of its master Sloterdijk, that can be applied to the current pandemic.
A hard article, even for me as an appreciator of Chul Han, about the current pandemic crisis, published in El País, states that: “it seems that Asia controls the epidemic better than Europe”, quotes the data of March 20 when the epidemic had not yet reached its peak in Europe and is based on the disciplined and ancestral structure of the east. 
Earlier than us, they bet on Big Data, says the author, and “they suspect that big data may have enormous potential to defend themselves against the pandemic” says in the article by El País, but warns that this could lead to a digital dictatorship, as in China and this is not a change.
About the current culture, the author affirms “today not only the polished is turned to the beautiful, but also the ugly” in the work A Salvação do Belo (page 19), we hope that the scourge of the virus will move our hearts and make us go from discovery from interdependence, as Morin says, to solidarity.
https://veja.abril.com.br/videos/clube-do-livro/uma-aula-de-decliniologia-com-theodore-dalrymple/  

 

The sense of pain and sacrifice

10 Apr

Death causes us pain, fear and even despair; in the face of a pandemic, it reveals aspects of tragedy, anxiety and apprehension, and we can do everything we can to prevent greater pain, but some go further and worry and donate to reduce the pain of others.
This is a human meaning, but the divine goes beyond what it means to be able to donate one’s life, or to put it at risk for the sake of the Other, only in this limit do we really understand the meaning.
Teilhard de Chardin, after admitting that the cross means “evasion out of this world” (p. 114), will explain to us that it is precisely it (in the present case the fear of death by the pandemic, “that exactly the path of human effort , supernaturally rectified and prolonged.
Because we have fully understood the meaning of the Cross, we no longer risk thinking that life is sad and ugly. We simply become more aware of its unspeakable seriousness.”(page 115).
So we thought of the happy days that we could walk freely and savor the air of the city, see the beaches now banned from being visited, the joyful family lunches, but it is for this loss that we now look with other eyes whose blindness could not allow.
How beautiful it would be an Easter Sunday with the whole family, or just going out to see happy autumn days in the southern hemisphere or early spring in the northern hemisphere, but it is this pain and this terrible pandemic that makes us “change glasses”, also in spiritual aspect.
So Chardin points out: “the cross is not an inhuman thing, but a superhuman one. We see well that the origin of Humanity today, the Cross was erected at the front of the road that leads to the highest peaks of creation ”, we will have to rethink home and social life after this pandemic. Chardin invites us to the mystery: “let us get closer. And we will recognize the flamed Seraph of the Alverne (picture), the one whose passion and compassion are “incendium mentis” *. For the Christian, it is not a question of disappearing in the shadow of the Cross, but of ascending in the light of the Cross.” (page 116).
Take advantage of this night of the pandemic to shed light on the “night of culture”, on the “night of God” and on the “night of the senses” that seemed to make us suppress all sensitivity to human life and the Other.
Let us live these three “nights” well to achieve an Easter (in sense of passage) for all humanity.

* incendium mentis – David Grummet says that in Chardin it is “fire of divine love in our soul”.
Chardin, T. (no year) O meio divino (The divine medium). Lisbon: Editorial Presença.

 

Tragedy and the arts

30 Jan

I am not speaking here of tragedy in the ordinary sense, but as an artistic category that is not only important for understanding the arts and beautiful Greek, but is claimed as a new idea of ​​tragedy “as proposed by Hölderlin, Hegel or Nietzsche.” (Ranciére, 2009, p. 25).

Just as Byung Chul Han in “The Salvation of the Beautiful” will problematize the dualism between contemplation and action, typical of modern philosophy that separates subject from object, Rancière penetrates further by proposing his “aesthetic revolution”, stating that what is there is “The abolition of an ordered set of relations between the visible and the sayable, knowledge and action, activity and passivity” (Ranciére, 2009, p. 25).

I said this when analyzing the Oedipus of the “psychoanalytic revolution” that invalidates “those of Corneille and Voltaire and who intends to resume – beyond the French tragedy, as well as the Aristotelian rationalization of tragic action – as the tragic thought of Sophocles” (idem , p. 25).

Ranciére will discuss in the following pages of his chapter on the “aesthetic revolution” on psychoanalysis saying that it is “invented at that point in which philosophy and medicine are mutually questioned to make thinking a question of disease and disease a question of thinking ” (Ranciére, 2009, p. 25), in paint above Marie Spartali Stillman (1844–1927),.

A large part of modern neo-therapies (I call exoteric psychoanalysis) go around, as if the problem of idealistic thinking was “disease” and a large part of human suffering could be solved as “thought” transforming it into disease.

This happens due to a bad relation with the thinking of tradition, late modernity is nothing but the bad reading of rationalism and idealism, or the delayed reading of empiricism, the thinking of Hanna Arendt’s “active” action, expressed in Byung Chul Han , is also part of the thinking of tradition that Ranciére will identify in the “representative regime as an absolute power of making” (Ranciére, 2009, p. 27).

It clearly identifies this regime in Baumgarten’s discourse on “confused clarity”: “in the aesthetic regime, this identity of knowledge and non-knowledge, of acting and suffering, which… constitutes the very way of being of art ”(Idem, p. 27), of course this is the art of tradition. And so it says, that the aesthetic revolution had already started with Vico, in his New Science, who against Aristotle and the representative tradition, although Rancière knows that his problem was not the theory of art, but the theological-poetic problem of “ wisdom of the Egyptians ” about hieroglyphs.