Arquivo para January 5th, 2022

Disempathy or untraining

05 Jan

Of course the term does not exist (disempathy), I created it to say that it is neither antipathy nor disaffection, it is a feeling as great as the empathy that dominates the thoughts, culture and habits of a given time, as opposed to empathy, to develop the theme I take a phrase by Margareth Thatcher quoted in the film The Iron Lady (directed by Phyllida Lloyd, 2011).

In the film Margareth Thatcher, played by Meryl Streep (Oscar deserved for best actress) says: “Watch out for your thoughts they become words. Beware that they can become actions, as they become habits. Beware of habits because they become your character”, this to understand how it is possible to detrain neurons so that they are not empathetic and become obnoxious and destructive, unfortunately we are training the opposite side to our natural empathic side.

As we said in the previous post, it is possible to train empathy, it is possible to untrain it (another neologism, something natural that is corrupted by a habit opposite to the instinctive) and induce a feeling of repulsion and hatred, even if disguised or veiled and even disguised in a form of “love” that corrects the other, we must correct everything that is not agape or empathy, but rather, the others are habits or culture.

Let’s follow the path proposed by Thatcher according to the film that intends to be a biography (no, that was the main criticism), so things start with thinking, something must already be corrected right away in contemporary theories and ideologies that say that everything would begin by the “middle”, remember the discourse of contractualists, Thomas Hobbes do Leviathan (1651) indicates that man is wolf the man, that is, he is anti-empathic, whereas John Locke (An Essay Concerning Human Understanding, 1690) defends that the individual must renounce the state of nature and make a contract (which the State regulates) and thus defends its freedom, his famous phrase: “where there is no law, there is no freedom” father of liberalism and in a way of empiricism (I think that it was born embryonic before with the vision of Francis Bacon).

Only Rousseau partly abandoned these concepts creating the “good savage”, the man is good society corrupts him, it is a principle of untraining, but he was also in favor of the contract, so it seems that handing freedom into the hands of the State is a condition “Natural”.

Thus, not only due to contractualism, but throughout the entire historical course, our thinking is linked to its contemporary roots and it is clear to what is within each culture, religion or ideological group, only through reading it is possible to detach from current thinking, and exercise to internalize takes the second step: the words.

Words like that are discourses or, as it is currently said, narratives, which are largely permeated in contemporary culture, only those who read are not linked to the flavor of this culture in its current polarization, remember that the first mental act is imitation (a neuroscience speaks of the mirror neuron), and it can be untrained, that is, it can either be taken back to its natural course of empathy or the opposite of what I have called disempathy.

It is from them that we unleash our actions, much has been said about reflection or active vitta as Hannah Arendt called it, and it was taken up by Byung Chull Han in his book The Society of Burnout, there he argues that we must also have an interior life, reflexive and so we can return to our initial course of empathy (my conclusion).

Finally, actions become habits, a good part of linguistics and semiotics starts the analysis from there, yes it is a fact that it also speaks of secondness (something that exists) and thirdness (what is), Pierce’s categories, but the theme is far and requires a greater depth which I humbly say I do not possess.

We come from habit to character, from the etymology of the word derives from the Greek “charaktér, éros”, or from the Latin “character, eris”, meaning “engraved”, therefore it is what is being carved, and it is possible to become a lack of empathy, that is, a break with the original empathic character, in the current discourse the absence of Subjectivity (proper to the subject), individualism (not looking at the Other) and a series of subcategories that are breaks with empathy.