Arquivo para November, 2018

Look at the signs of the times with serenity

30 Nov

In spite of all the fatigue, an active stimulus, the overload of work and even of emotions, it is possible to find shortcuts to a simple and well-lived life, even in times of sharpness.

The first essential step is to have the right diagnosis, so many self-help books, good nutrition, recipes of happiness that do not seem to move people from anxiety, fear, anguish, and with increasingly serious syndromes like Burnout.

Diagnosis is a society that has pushed us to a job, not only functional but necessary, but with additional burdens of political, social, religious and even family activism as being “necessary” to live well.

There is no room for contemplation, even for rest, for leisure activities, because in them we also put more activism, endless queues of cars for beaches, fields or other retreats that are nothing more than to lead the agitation in the suitcase.

We do not know how to read the signs of the times, and with this activism only increases the emptiness and the sense of concern, the diagnosis already pointed out by Nietzsche has a recipe in Kierkegaard to return to being what we are, and from there to change and evolution with serenity .

The apocalyptic will say signs of the times, the pragmatics will say humanity is thus, always was and always will be, incapacity to read the times, non-fundamentalist reading about the end times “Take care that your hearts are not insensitive because of gluttony, of drunkenness and worries of life, and that this day does not suddenly fall upon you “(Lk 21:35), can serve for our times well before the end of the world that will be delayed.

It does not matter if this would be the end of time, the problem is to become insensitive, or still intoxicated or too preoccupied with life, it becomes obscured.


Serenity, diagnosis and education

29 Nov

The apparent cause of our day-to-day problems seems to be the latest advances, innovations, social life, social media “media” and human work in many areas, we embark on the easy discourse of liquidity, hypercommunication, and excess information, this diagnosis is correct.
With the wrong diagnosis, we prescribe the wrong medicine, put more exercise into our lives, an exercise life, Sloterdijk would say, more natural food and more active life for it, fault of diagnosis error and absence of a clear future.
The clearing can only come from the thought, the appeal to practice is the worst remedy we have not have a weekend of rest and recreational activities because there are matters “urgent.”
The diagnosis of this current drama was already in Nietzsche (1834-1900), wrote in Human too Human: “For lack of rest our civilization is headed for a new barbarism. At no other time did the assets, that is, the restless ones, avail so much. Thus it belongs to the necessary corrections to be made as to the character of humanity to greatly strengthen the contemplative element, ‘a clear indication of the date of the present problem.
It may even be earlier, Kierkegaard (1813-1855) wrote: “the remedy for anxiety is to be as we truly are,” pointing out at the beginning of modernity the ontological problem of which humanity suffers a great deal, wanting to be what one is not , even if the daring and the search for new horizons is good, it must be done in solidarity with the Other.
The diagnosis, said Priest Manuel Antunes, whose birth celebrated 100 years on November 3, is to counter the homo mechanicus, the fruit of modernity, which created what the Portuguese wise man called “foam man”: light, without consistency, without fidelity and without strong convictions.
The education that must follow must be highly dialogic, comprehensive and transdisciplinary, defended Father Manuel Antunes, defend Edgar Morin, Basarab Nicolescu and so many others, however a method is necessary so that it does not stop in the speech.
The method proposed by Gadamer in his reading of Heidegger is the hermeneutic circle, the possibility that from preconceptions we arrive at a fusion of horizons and a greater possibility of re-reading of the present time, outlining ways for the future.


Phronesis and serenity

28 Nov

It is no coincidence that Gadamer adopts Phronesis as one of the key elementsin his discourse on Truth and Method, incompletely translated as prudence, the term actually to be confused with “wisdom” practice of serenity, free translation.
This is because in our view, Gadamer is a rehabilitator of practical philosophy, those who call for practicality, objectivity (sic! Idealist), are impractical for lack of wisdom, impulsive and active, typical of the society of fatigue.
In the Greek sense, ethics is added, but it is not a private knowledge in the moral sense, but public and social, which aims to minimize exacerbations of ego self-impulsiveness, when placed in a perspective of the work of art reaches a level of universal principle.
This includes the work of art because it was the excessive centralization in the self that reduced the relation of ethics to aesthetics, public amorality, slavery is not a new aesthetic, not even the negativity sometimes necessary to art, is its absence by lack of relationship with ethics and the training process.
Gadamer retrieves phronesis from Aristotle’s proposal in the Nicomachean Ethics, where he seeks to establish the articulation between the universal and the particular, still more between the individual and society, within historical forms of life, but with a common ethos.
One can thus establish a relationship with education, at a time when one talks about a school without a party, one has to think that there is another, without wanting neutrality because it will be an illusion, we explore in a post to follow.
We need to establish the relation of the phonesis with the techné and the episteme, which is the theoretical knowledge and know-how of techné, which is etymologically linked to art (τέχνη) and to crafts.
The harmony between the three forms of wisdom results in practical wisdom, praxis


Serenity and a sonata to Kreutzer

27 Nov

Serenity was the theme of a speech by Heidegger on the occasion of 175 years since the birth of composer Conradin Kreutzer in Messkirch on 30 October 1955, but the same Kreutzer was worthy of a novel entitled Sonata a Kreutzer by Leon Tolstoy, which tells the dialogue about marriage on a train trip, in a position that is almost antagonistic because there is a climate of suspense between both that causes intrigue and pessimism.
Heidegger’s thinking will be demarcated by two of his writings: Serenity, 1955, and another from a conversation about thinking that took place on a country road, 1945, where Heidegger chronicles a long dialogue between three characters, the Researcher , the Scholar and the Teacher, on the question of thinking.
The starting point about thought can be What is metaphysics? Written in 1929, where Heidegger says: “it is by no means the most accurate thought,” precisely because it is attached to the ultimate goal of calculation, which ” reduces all countable to enumerated, for use in the next enumeration. The calculation admits nothing but the enumerable, “this comes against the neologism of the Vienna Circle, and algorithms.
What causes in thought this logic is the pretense of all encompassing and submitting, calculating thinking “can not suspect that all calculable calculus is already, and before its sums and products, in a whole whose unity undoubtedly belongs to the incalculable one that is subtracted from itself and its strangeness from the clutches of calculation “(Heidegger, 1943, 248).
There are, therefore, two types of thought, both being in their own way, respectively, legitimate and necessary: the thinking that calculates and the reflection (of the Nachdenken) that meditates. […] a thought that meditates arises as spontaneously as the thinking it calculates. Thought that meditates sometimes requires a lot of effort. It requires a long workout. It lacks care even more delicate than any other real craft. However, like the farmer, he must also know how to wait for the seed to rise and mature. “(Heidegger, 1955, pp. 13-14).

What Heidegger is going to explain in this work is that the relation between thought and will, in conflict and from where Nietzsche part to his reflections, is not evoked according to tradition, the representational thought that already has in itself one of the forms of the will.

According to Heidegger, the form of liberation of thought, which enables form (we would say thought) in the approximation of things, there is a non-objectifying, non-appropriatory approximation marked first of all by a “awake to serenity” .

It may seem, but it is not passivity, for the act which lies at the core of serenity is of a higher order than that of the usual human machinations which sends action, it does not necessarily imply activity as it is commonly understood.

For the thinker this elevated form, which although the day is not associated with meditation and contemplation, is mistakenly associated with a weakness of want, serenity, since it would be fundamental to restrain itself as a path of meditative thought is presented by Heidegger as the highest form of human action, so necessary these days.
Serenity is rather a restraint to mere impulse, anxiety and compulsory action.

HEIDEGGER, Martin. Serenidade. Tradução de Maria Madalena Andrade e Olga Santos. Lisboa: Instituto Piaget, 1955.

HEIDEGGER, Martin.  Que é metafísica? In: Os Pensadores. Tradução de Ernildo Stein. São Paulo: Abril Cultural, 1973.


Pause time: can we

26 Nov

There is still a remnant of November and December already appearing on the horizon, everyone is waiting for something we should always do: pause, wait and meet with friends and family, the question is: do we succeed?
Looking at the world, the dark signs continue, bigger than liquids, because if something were really changed from the solid to the liquid, it would even be desirable because something is moving, but it seems like the sameness, everything is going to look the same.
The protests against Macron and his taxes, is not so different from Portugal or Brazil, the state is huge and weighs on society, who will pay the bills, and the retirees will be the ones who will pay the bill? uncertainties and a single thing really clear: crisis of time.
There are signs of a revival, a word used by the philosopher Martha Nussbaum, I would say yes, but just where the heaviest criticism falls: the globalized world, the internet and the “solid” state that is taking a darker, dangers right.
I participated in a 100 year event of Priest Manuel Antunes, this transdisciplinary man, was the theme of a lecture written with a friend in his work Repensar Portugal, said that it was necessary to seek in politics, the “temperate zones” where human nature is more comfortable, but the 2018 sample is from more radicalized regions, in the bad sense of the term.
It is necessary to pause, even when forced and in discomfort, to look at the future so that it is possible to have hope, peace and a closer approach of the peoples, the national radicalism is perverse, Europe sews a possible agreement for the exit of England from the block , the so-called Brexit.
The US ends the end of the year with the dreamed Trump Wall, and Mexicans pushing across the wall, proving that it was not a solution but the announcement of a crisis.
New governments to the right in Brazil and Colombia, the left in Mexico wins after many years of a party monopolizing power, while Nicaragua and Venezuela parade catastrophic left-wing governments, Bolivia, Ecuador and Uruguay are in temperate zones.
Thinking about a more integrated world, climate issue and income distribution has become more difficult, what can be expected is a vigorous reaction of human thought, man has always been able to face the challenges that have appeared, perhaps the retreat is a resumption


The truth that really sets you free

23 Nov

It is common to instrumentalize the truth to favor our opinion, our “doxa”, a certain exaggeration or a little liar detail, or even a distortion of the facts, this has nothing to do with the episteme or with the sincere search of the truth.
The truth that liberates, therefore, is never instrumentalized, it is an opening to the other, an attentive listening beyond our preconceptions, it is never unilateral, it is able to penetrate the hermeneutic circle, the reasons beyond our egos and vanities.
Thus the post-truth and ignorance of the “opinion” or the doxa that contributes to it and creates true twisted, in a sense all fundamentalist religions in one way or another, can only be overcome with dialogue in the light of the facts, acceptance mutual understanding of preconceptions and the openness to new aspects that arise from the fusion of horizons, is the hermeneutic circle that Heidegger and Gadamer sought to explain as a method of arriving at the truth.
It is therefore ontological, this has nothing to do with formal logic, be it positivists, neo-positivist or purely idealistic, it is a logic of Being that admits the Other, and its view of the world and its values.
Scholars, exegetes and fundamentalists say little or nothing at all about the fact that Jesus was born, that’s why Christmas is a special celebration, and it came ontologically with its Being to bear witness to the truth, has little or nothing truth with the logical or legalistic truth of our days, in John 18:37 he states, “I was born and come into the world for this: to bear witness of the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice, “and says this contrary to the Pharisees and Pilate, fundamentalists and law.


The Truth Beyond Practice and Action

22 Nov

The truth of the so-called post truth must be read not from fake news, from editorial groups that are almost always polarized and full of the “doxa” (private opinion), but from a teleological search for truth beyond cultures, intolerances and ideologies.
The interpretation of how Gadamer sees this issue relating violence / non-violence comes from the lessons given by Heidegger in the 1920s in Aristotle’s Phenomenological Interpretations (Heidegger, 1992), where he penetrates the dialogical structure of Phronesis, which is practical-oriented wisdom in Greek philosophy it is distinguished from
episteme and techné.
I open a parenthesis, because this is important and what is the relationship with a policy increasingly subject to the “practical” direction of action and a certain type of violence, because even the perspective of change can not distance itself from what Jacques Ranciere calls Engagment, I would say being more direct, that there is a lack of prudence and tact with practice.
It lacks a notion of mutuality, a fundamental notion in Gadamer’s thought, which emphasizes the dialogical and
practical trait present in his project of philosophical hermeneutics, which may seem a distancing from praxis in the pure sense of engagment, but it is not, in his own words Gadamer is a practice that turns to itself without realizing its
fundamentals and without understanding it as the fruit of reflection and therefore of theory.
Whether it is the work of art or the field of education, or even the domain of relations with economic questions, engagment can rob the essence of artistic, pedagogical or economic doing, and this does not mean art, education or dehumanized economy.
According to Heidegger’s lectures and the Aristotelian philosophy of rhetoric, in addition to phronesis (practice), there are two other features of ethos: appeals to arete (virtue) and eunoia, that is, good thinking or goodwill that cultivates others to receive it.
Thus the practical action without the necessary acceptance of the others, then enters the Other without the virtue can become hypocrisy or unreliable, without the sympathy of the listener can become a disgusting speech without appeal, even with kind and sweet words.

HEIDEGGER, Martin. Phenomenological Interpretations with Respect to Aristotle: Indication of the Hermeneutical Situation. Trad. scored by Michael Baur. In Man and World, 25, p. 355-393, 1992.


Truth, beyond theory and practice

21 Nov

The concept of theory came into little credit if it moved away from practice, because idealism has no other possibility than to consider that it was the practice that determined the truth, or empiricism, because the ideal as knowledge, supreme knowledge of the idea, would have to have some method to discern when a “theory” is valid or not, and only experience could say.
There is a mastery and clarification about the multiplicity of things and, on the other hand, there is a knowledge of a concrete situation as if it were a more adequate orientation.
What Gadamer sought to demonstrate in his Truth and Method, among many other things with the question of historicity and method, was that when it comes to our technical capabilities, and they include our preconceptions and our interpretation of reality, the model of truth is not and should not be unique, and this not significant relativism, but ability to see the horizon posterior to the process interpretation of reality, ie, after the fusion of horizons
In the aspect of our technical capacities, it performs well its function, which is to bring relative security and comfort to some needs that exist and others that were created in the process of fusion of horizons.
When the field in question of our history and language is at stake, our relationship with art and religion, our awareness of death, our self-knowledge, and our choices and responsible actions in the face of our affect us as finite human beings, the model of truth fails.
What the Greeks determine as the spontaneous emergence of an “art” [τέχνε] proper to define the meaning of truth-bearing words [συνβολον], the art of interpreting [ερμηνευτικές τέχνες] has the name “hermeneutics” which represents not only our particular view of an object, but on the contrary our difficulty in determining precisely the meaning of a message,
While the Aufklärung of modernity believed that even the contents of history, which had become alien to us, could also be accessible to us through our rational activities, that is, a theoretical reflection, the idealism the fashion of the “old” Hegelians, the new ones have no reference to historicity, and Gadamer will reflect on Dilthey, who had the merit of abandoning psychologism, without leaving romantic historicism aside.
Thus speaking specifically of art, he argued that in order to properly understand his own works, more important than to grasp the unity between the content of the text and the tradition, is to accept the effort of understanding that only arises where there is the possibility of revising some misunderstanding, or some preconceptions, in other words, the interpretation is of the nature of understanding, since it is part of the possibility almost always of misunderstanding.
For contemporary hermeneutics, with some misunderstandings, Schleiermacher says that the task of understanding a text must also become an effort to understand another individuality, and then there are so many questions about the Other.
Ability to move beyond preconceptions and reinterpret the truth itself is part of the effort to overcome barriers where irrationality and hatred build insurmountable walls, Gadamer make this exemple: “Whoever abandons himself to his particularity is ungebildet (“unformed”) – e.g., if someone gives way to blind anger without measure or sense of proportion”.  


What is diffusion of innovation

20 Nov

An innovation to reach the market, if it does not fall into disuse that is a possibility, goes through a process called “adoption curve”.
Everett Rogers, is a recognized in this area of communication studies, professor of department and journalism of the University of New Mexico, his book Diffusion of Innovations, already 5ª. is one of the most cited books in the area, the first is from 1962, and the author died in 2004.
Their main argument is that innovation is communicated over time among participants in a social system, and the origin of their theory spans several disciplines and although it has never used the term, it can be safely stated that it is transdisciplinary.
Rogers proposes that four main elements influence the dissemination of a new idea: innovation itself, communication channels, time and a social system. This process depends heavily on human capital. Innovation must be widely adopted to sustain itself. Within the rate of adoption, there is a point at which an innovation reaches critical mass. That can also be understood as the curve of adoption
The theory characterizes 5 advantages for adopting a technology: 1) the advantage of improving an innovation over a previous generation competitor of a product, 2) from a point, a team must improve the advantage relative to its competitor in potential for there to be no return to the previous product, 3) the new product must be compatible with the previous one, not only when installing and operating, but especially with regard to the potential consumer’s lifestyle, 4) relevancy at the time of launch which means a deep understanding of the conditions that innovation finds in the moment it is launched, and 5) what is the complexity or simplicity of using innovation when it is launched, complex innovations can reach a small audience only.
An innovation to reach the market, if not fall into disuse, is a possibility, goes through a process With its successive groups of consumers adopting the new technology (shown in blue), its market share (yellow) will eventually reach saturation level.


Post-truth incompleteness

19 Nov

Before we know what post-truth is, we must know if there is any definition of truth, and this leads us back to the beginnings of Western civilization, where it was known that the truth was hidden, that is, either for Aristotle or Plato, the At the apex of Greek culture of antiquity, truth was hidden, that is, an aletheia was necessary, a Greek term not to be concealed, manifest, or even more (negation) lethõ (forget), therefore there is only truth about a fact occurred.
For Greek philosophy it was clear that “doxa” or opinion was contrary to episteme, or systematized and organized knowledge, but every episteme implies a method, that is, it comes from that epistemology, or the way to organize and prove certain knowledge.
The issue arose in the context of current politics because some politicians, avoiding names to avoid the doxological polarization (of opinions) started to deny facts, that is, what was registered and proven, and even denied, but this did not it’s new.
Already in her 1967 essay “Truth and Politics,” Hannah Arendt stated that fact-based truth could be substantiated and verified, but politicians insisted on turning back and making speeches based on opinions, so it is not new, and seeing with the media is something else, the monopoly of opinion and that almost always is not based on data.
The fact that there are social network media, networks and groups have always existed only that they were hegemon owners of newspapers and magazines, and now they are not, it starts to have an open confrontation of opinions, that turn into organized twisted, with emotional appeals and doxological.
It is not by chance that populist politicians, who all bordered on or were avowedly fascists, were great orators and capable of provoking fascination in the masses, the fascination today is another, the ability to articulate facts and use images or data that simulate false epistemes.
Brazil was the cases of mensalão, petroleum and other ill-informed people that generated a body of half-truths that inflamed and reached a large part of public opinion, another was little consideration of the cultural and moral values ​​of society, whether religious, whether it be black culture, indigenous culture, or Brazilian regionalities, there were many untruths.
It is so difficult to understand sometimes, that even trying to clarify the facts we are confused, for example, in Portugal there is now a famous case (here) of Tancos, a barracks where a gun truck was stolem the weapons of war, and I needed a Portuguese friend to understand, there is half-truths everywhere and lots of tall people seem involved, and the guns were returned with even an extra box of arms, appear a jokie but ist real fact.

As part of the truth of the facts, there are currents of “opinions” where the term may be inappropriate, currents of divergent or even opposing cultures would be better, without the broad dialogue required the tendency is for cheerleaders to grow and increase number of conflicts, where intolerance prevails the risk of serious conflicts is eminent.
We separate here “opinion” of epistemological, cultural or methodological divergence, since different ways to obtain the truth must be thought apart from the passions, otherwise the possibility of concrete ways to overcome crises are blocked and reason disappears.