Posts Tagged ‘peace’

Some fresh water and hot food

16 Jul

While the powerful fight for dominance, colonization and power ignore the lives of simple people, of basic service workers who are necessary in any country and culture because they have forgotten true community and moral values.

They can talk about this in everyday life, but their minds, articulations and efforts are focused on achievements and power, not the achievement of a good friendship, of a few hours of relief and pleasure in a day to day life and in a society that pushes us towards maximum efficiency and fatigue. to the limit of strength.

When hiring some construction service workers, they told me that they would like that in order to work they needed good fresh water and hot food, lunch boxes needed to be reheated and sweat was restored with simple fresh water.

They are also grateful for a dignified treatment and a little rest after lunch, it is incredible that a large part of the affluent society is unaware of these simple things that can bring great happiness, balance and peace, the tired society ignores this.

The centers of power are surrounded by ambitious people who know (or think they know) how to deceive simple people, but they are unaware of the day-to-day lives of these people.

I see when they form conversation circles, the issues and concerns, there are almost always concerns about relationships that are lost, the use of violence and chemicals that permeate their family life, as human values ​​crumble and fall as well. upon them the worst degradations and inhumanities.

A good word, it is also a little fresh water now in a figurative sense, but no less true, true cultures and religions keep this “fresh water” in their thermal jugs and where the food of the soul can be digested and provide energy for everyday life. .

The biblical passage in which Jesus speaks to the crowds, and his family seeks him, he has a surprising answer Mt 12,49-50: “And stretching out his hand to the disciples, Jesus said: “Here are my mother and my brothers. whoever does the will of my Father who is in heaven is my brother, my sister and my mother” “, does not mean that he ignores his family, but he wants to give those people some good food and fresh water.

The world we live in is not ignored, in fact those in power ignore it, but its good to bring a little peace and hope to the souls that survive in a society of tiredness, hatred and neglect.


Insecurity in Europe and attack in the USA

15 Jul

NATO decided to place American missiles in Germany, the Tomahawk ballistic missiles, which can hit targets up to 2,500 km away and carry nuclear ammunition, there are also hypersonic weapons in development, which increase European firepower, Russia already has weapons of this type and which are already spread out in strategic locations.

The Russian reaction came through Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov “Europe is in the crosshairs of our missiles, our country is in the crosshairs of American missiles in Europe. We have already experienced this. We have enough capacity to contain these missiles, but the potential victims are the capitals of these European countries”, which would be the trigger for a 3G.

The fighting continues hard, a secret document reveals that the death toll is already immense in the war and Russia would have 750,000 soldiers killed or injured, the number in Ukraine, although unknown, must be close to this figure, and neighboring countries Poland, Latvia and Lithuania and the Scandinavians threaten to send troops if Ukraine becomes more fragile.

Former president and presidential candidate Donald Trump was attacked when he was holding a campaign rally in Pennsylvania, several shots were fired, killing one person and injuring another, Trump was hit in the ear and removed from the scene by his security guards, the shooter was killed and the FBI investigates the motivations, the first is clearly political.

Although the scenario is frightening and there is no shortage of warmongering spirits, at this moment there is a civilizing crisis installed because from the center of power to ordinary citizens there is an animosity that does not perceive the danger of intolerance, violence like this not only awakens more authoritarian spirits but also strengthens them, and should not receive applause from anyone.

The good news comes from Iran where the moderate Masoud Pezeshkian, President-elect of Iran claims to be willing to hold ‘constructive dialogue’ with the European Union, the announcement was made in an English-language newspaper bringing great hope.


Resistance of the spirit and pacifism

09 Jul

What Edgar Morin defines as resistance of the spirit, he is 103 years old yesterday, is beyond thought and political force, what is spirit for European philosophy is mediated by the idea we formulate about the world, and spirit here has to be beyond current everyday thinking.

Human beings are capable of thinking about peace in their relationships, cultivating their interiority, an exhaustive theme in Byung-Chul Han’s ontology, and delving deeper into values ​​such as: humility, fragility and the need we have for each other, we do not live isolated.

Finally, having a true otherness, the fear of otherness is when there is difference and we “put ourselves on the defensive”, for example what is called preventive wars, guarantees of sovereignty over other peoples or other cultures, this generally starts wars and does not prevent them as intended.

The main reason, say many authors, one that is not questionable for denouncing “the open veins of Latin America” is Eduardo Galeano, who said that the big reason is the theft and the jokes of the people to be dominated, today in addition to this they are also clashing empires.

The spirit of resistance and pacifism is historically not an easy or “neutral” position, it is to avoid the humanitarian catastrophe that characterizes all wars, on a global scale this means an unprecedented civilizational crisis, since the military power today is immense .

It takes a very high, truly altruistic and missionary spirit, since current wars easily find allies, even among the simple population, both polarization and the use of the media to promote almost all biased narratives, are what give substance to the warlike thinking and spread throughout the social fabric.

Congratulations to the long-lived Edgar Morin, his resistance is visible due to his age, the lucidity he still maintains and may his words echo and civilization finds a path of resistance.



Ukraine in danger and change in Iran

08 Jul

The scenario in these two wars, among many others that exist on the planet, had opposing points this past week, Vikton Orbán’s visit on Friday (5/07) to Moscow, and the victory of moderate president Masoud Pezeshkian in Iran, represents a breath of peace.

Vikton Orbán does not speak on behalf of the European Union and Putin is only interested in discussing the “nuances” of proposals for a ceasefire, as Russian forces are currently threatening the second largest city in the country Kharkiv with more than 1.5 million inhabitants and an important industrial center (in the photo the city hall square).

Wars always involve hatred and heinous crimes, of course they must be investigated and punished, but it is hardly clear everything that is inhumane and cruel that was done during a war, the prisoners exchanged the previous week, for example, showed signs of torture and ill-treatment in Russian prisons.

In the Middle East, Israel announces a new delegation sent to Qatar to negotiate peace with Hamas, but an operation with drones by the Israeli army left 6 dead in the West Bank, and there are still fears of a war with Hezzbollah in Lebanon.

The elections in France are also in this chessboard scenario, the right curiously supports Putin and the left allied with Makron supports Ukraine, a republican front formed at the last minute ended the elections with the largest number of seats in the French National Assembly.

In the USA, there are still fears of Biden’s defeat to Donald Trump, the American president seems to no longer enjoy good health and disposition, but there are still no options.

When the prospect of peace is small, it means that men have distanced themselves from seeing the world with a stable and sustainable future, the spirits of difference and hatred are loose, but as Edgar Morin states, it is necessary to have resistance of the spirit, to have hope.


Lebanon, elections in Iran and Eastern Europe

01 Jul

The elections in Iran have already taken place on 28/06, indicating that the correct prognosis of slight favoritism for the reformist Masoud Pezeshkian, the most voted with 44.40% over the ultraconservative Saeed Jalili with 40.38%, the second round should take place the next day 07/05 and the elections mean a lot for the West and for the future of the relationship with Israel.

The elections were brought forward due to the death of former president Ebrahim Raisi in May in a helicopter crash in the north of the country, the regime is subject to a board of clerics under the command of Ayotalá Ali Khamenei, who succeeded the famous leader Khomeini and the president submits to this board of clergy.

However, the tension in the Lebanon region, where it is seen by the population and several governments as an imminent attack by Israel, is part of this chess where Iran is seen as an ally of the Hezbollah group which is based in this country, some countries have already asked the its citizens not to travel to or leave Lebanon urgently.

The possibility of a reformist government in Iran and growing pressure on Israel could help change the scenario in the region of war and escalating tension and a very dark future.

Tension in Eastern Europe is also growing, the escalation of the war has reached Crimea under the Russian government and the retaliation has hit Ukraine’s energy sources, Russia is under the tone due to the West’s growing support for Ukraine and directly accuses France of sending troops, what a declaration of war means in practice.

In the USA the pressure is also growing, in the presidential debate the topic was relevant, the elections in the country will take place at the beginning of November, and in the first debate Biden found himself worn out and now there is talk of replacing him as candidate.

Russia under the same tone, even commenting on the pathetic coup attempt in Bolivia, seen by the Kremlin as a Russian ally, but there was an exchange of 90 prisoners between the two countries (photo) in a rare moment of truce in the middle of an entire border zone under a strong military contingent.

Peace is always possible, it takes hearts and minds capable of overcoming hatred and violence.



The war could spread to the East

24 Jun

The inclusion of more protagonists in a war environment encourages its escalation, and Russia’s response to the meeting in Switzerland was immediate.

Putin met with the president of North Korea, one of the most closed and warlike countries in the world, and then went to North Vietnam in search of cooperation for the war in Ukraine, South Korea’s reaction was immediate, the South president -Korean Yoon Suk-Yeol stated: “It is absurd that two parties with a history of launching invasion wars, the Korean War and the war in Ukraine, now promise mutual military cooperation based on the premise of a preemptive strike by the commonwealth. international situation that will never happen”, however it is a clear threat.

The document called the “Comprehensive Strategic Partnership Treaty” has the same spirit as the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), which provides assistance from the entire bloc to any attack that a member suffers, Russia already has the partnership of Belarus, and This is how the alliances that preceded the second war seem to have been formed, at the time the Axis was Germany, Italy and Japan, and later Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary, Romania and Slovakia (Finland, which did not participate) also joined forces. Stalin of Russia even agreed to the agreement and then, betrayed, he became an enemy of the Axis and joined the Alliance that was fighting them (USA, France and United Kingdom).

One can imagine that this climate was absurd, people who lived in peace allied themselves in this way, but if we look at our daily lives today it is no different, if we look at the almost always polarized vision and creating narratives for wars we can understand how this climate installs, wanting peace is also an option and few think so, at this moment the Korean president highlights in his speech the clear idea that the country sees no reason for war, but does not rule out sending aid to Ukraine and thus a new pole of conflict comes up.

Reacting passively in a conflict does not mean omitting oneself or otherwise, it is the toughest position because it shows that there are mistakes whenever the resource is war, reading a narrative is not the narration, as stated by Byung-Chul Han and Walter Benjamin (The narrator), remember that the story told by Herodotus of King Psammenit “serves as an example of his art of narration” (Han, 2023, p. 21).

In it the Egyptian king Psammenit when defeated in war by the Persian king Cambyses, a after seeing her daughter reduced to a servant and her son being taken to be executed, she remains with her eyes to the ground, but upon seeing among her servants prisoners, an elderly and frail man “hit her head with his fists and expressed deep sadness” (Han, 2023, p. 22) because perhaps I would prefer to be in that poor man’s place, war destroys our deepest humanity, the narrative distorts and dehumanizes history.

Therefore, a sensible, serene narration is needed, the current war potential of the world can lead us to the most serious civilizational crisis far beyond barbarism and could reach extermination or an insurmountable limit of hatred and violence, we have hope for peace if there are still peaceful people. The biblical reading says: “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God!” (Mt 5, 9).

Han, Byung-Chul (2023). A crise da narração. Translate: Daniel Guilhermino. Brazil, Petrópolis: ed. Vozes.


The Just, wrath and serenity

21 Jun

Martino Bracarense, an author from the 5th century AD who is little known but is one of those responsible for the days of the week in the Galician-Portuguese language Monday, Tuesday, etc., stated that “Anger transforms all things that are best and fairest into their opposite”, There are many philosophical, psychological and even poetic reflections on anger, William Shakespeare stated that: “Anger is a poison that we take waiting for the other to die” (the photo on the side is by Andre Hunder on unsplash).

In stormy times, to maintain justice and serenity, a great effort of character and temperance is necessary because the normal thing is to react to the pain of hatred with some form, even if disguised as hatred, Aristotle stated: “a desire, accompanied by pain, to perceived revenge, due to a perceived disregard towards an individual or his neighbor, coming from people from whom disregard is not expected” (Aristotle’s Rhetoric).

What does accompanied (anger) by pain mean? This requires Aristotle’s definition of pathê: “emotions are all those things because of which people change their thoughts and disagree with their judgments, being accompanied by pain and pleasure, for example anger, pity, fear and all other things similar to their opposites”, is clearly not an exhaustive definition of anger, as it would require psychological and pathological elements and a more in-depth analysis of the topic.

The important thing is to know that it: escapes justice, produces intemperance and is placed in a sequence of structural hatreds, it ends up creating a total absence of serenity, of capacity for reflection and, in the end, it produces a great source of injustice and even even psychopathologies.

 Another point is to think about the antidote to this state of mind, often cultural, structural and produced by those who believe they defend peace, of course in essence these same individuals are themselves pathological cases, because disguised anger, or as the popular saying goes “distilled poison”, unlike medicine, is not antithetical, it is poison in continuous and progressive doses.

Where then to find serenity? The answer is simple in hope, the very hope that waits, that breathes and that meditates and contemplates, a theme exhaustively elaborated in Byung-Chul Han in almost all of his themes, In the swarm where he exhorts “respect” as the only form of symmetry, silence and contemplation in “Vita Contemplativa” and the concept of affective tone in his work “Heidegger’s heart: about the concept of affective tone”, although he never sites the term directly, I think that is what he ultimately intends to contribute to contemporary thought to recover its ability to think, contemplate and Be.

The religious thought of our time also needs to recover more than serenity, sobriety, because they seem to be enveloped by certain intoxications of our time, as stated by Judeo-Christian thought, the wind came and God was not there: “after the earthquake there was a fire , but the Lord was not in it. And after the fire there was the murmur of a gentle breeze” (1 Kings 12) and the storm of Jesus among the sleeping apostles and a storm happening is also famous, He wakes up and tells the sea to calm down to the astonishment of the apostles (Mk 4,39).


Tensions and pressure for peace

17 Jun

The G7 summit managed to bring together 90 countries and met without the presence of Russia and without the approval of China, which considered Russia’s participation essential, the Kremlin’s reaction was ironic in relation to the meeting that demands that Ukraine’s territory be kept in In all its integrity, despite Zelensky’s diplomatic victory, the war battle continues to be cruel.

On Thursday (13/06) the USA signed a ten-year cooperation pact with Ukraine, which puts it on an equal level with the partnership with Israel, however a Russian nuclear ship that arrived in Cuba raises the level of tension close to the famous missile crisis in the 1960s, although today global involvement in the crisis is much greater as much of Europe feels threatened by Russian military incursions and militarization is increasing as a more nationalist political turn evolves.

In addition to the 7 countries that make up the G7 US, UK, Canada, Canada, Italy, Japan and France, another 82 countries attended the meeting that discussed a possible peace agreement in the war in Eastern Europe, highlighting the presence of Pope Francis, remembering that the Vatican is also a sovereign state.

Also noteworthy is Prime Minister Modi of India defending the well-being of the Global South, emphasizing the importance of Africa in global affairs, a point that escapes much debate, but some aspects of colonialism still survive, both in the economic and social aspects. cultural, and the defense of these countries is essential.

In 1918, with the end of the First World War, American President Woodrow Wilson proposed a “peace without winners”, although Germany should be better analyzed in the agrément (in the photo the countries of the Treaty of Versailles, 1919, which established the borders).

Little known, the 14 points that established a new peace policy after the Second World War, known as the 14 points, were the following: 1. Open diplomacy without secret treaties, 2. Free economic trade on the seas during war and peace, 3 .Equal trading conditions, 4. Decrease armaments among all nations, 5. Adjust colonial claims, 6. Evacuation of all Central Powers from Russia and allow it to define its own independence, 7. Belgium will be evacuated and restored, 8. Return of the Alsace-Lorraine region and all French territories, 9. Readjustment of Italian borders, 10. Austria-Hungary will be given an opportunity for self-determination,11. Redraw the borders of the Balkan region creating Romania, Serbia and Montenegro, 12. Creation of a Turkish state with free trade guaranteed in the Dardanelles, 13. Creation of an independent Polish state and and 14. Creation of the League of Nations.

Today there are new issues such as the real borders of Ukraine, the lack of a territory for the Palestinian people (Hamas is just a group from this nation), the forgotten Kurdish people, the conflicts in the Kashmir region (there is an Indian and a Pakistani one) , the end of conflicts and tensions in Africa that hide new colonialism and some guarantees of peace on Russia’s borders that can very well be understood (Russia calls them “neutral” regions) and the complex tension Taiwan x China.

Ultimately, it is not impossible, but it is necessary to draw a global map of peace and isolate governments and groups that threaten the freedom and autonomy of people.


The Other as a political category

11 Jun

In the history of philosophy, Being, Entity and Essence were three fundamental metaphysical categories, as modern philosophy threw the “dirty water with the child in the basin”, in addition to the forgetfulness of Being as pointed out by Heidegger and his interpreters and dialogues (Hannah Arendt, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Peter Sloterdijk, Byung-Chul Han and others), there is also a rediscovered, or even new, category from outside religious culture: the Other, seen as the “neighbor”, the “brother” or the “faithful”.

Paul Ricoeur wrote about the neighbor and the partner, to differentiate the relations between the two in the modern utilitarian relationship, but also Lévinas (Time and the Other), Martin Buber (I and You) and Byung-Chul Han, in a more contemporary analysis, wrote The Expulsion of the Other, but Junger Habermas’ work “The Inclusion of the Other – Studies in Political Theory” is one, as the title says, that tries to include this analysis within the modern polis, it says in the introduction: “I defend the content rational basis of a morality based on the same respect for all and the general joint responsibility of each one for the other” (Habermas, 2002, p. 7) and condemns the distrust of a universalism marked more by the appeal to difference than “the same respect for everyone extends to those who are similar, but to the person of the other or others in their otherness” (idem).

The author says: this moral community is not just the mere inclusion of the Other (pg. 8)”, but the “inclusion of the other” means that the borders of the community are open to everyone – also and precisely to those who are strangers who are strangers each other – and they want to continue being strangers and constituted exclusively by the idea of ​​discrimination and suffering” (pg. 8 and the entire first part of the book refers to this issue.

The second part refers to a reply and a discussion with John Rawls, who was invited by the editor of the Journal of Philosophy, where he analyzes in terms of concepts, the moral institutions that guide Rawls and clarifies that his reply also serves the purpose of clarifying “the differences between political liberalism and a Kantian republicanism as I understand it” (pg. 8), I remember that also Paul Ricoeur “The Just or Essence”, written in two volumes, also aborted the ideas of John Rawls.

The third part of the book “intends to contribute to the clarification of a controversy that resurfaced in Germany after reunification. I continue to follow the line that I began in the past in an essay on `Citizenship and National Identity’” (pg. 8), but the author knew that the theme would be so current today.

The fourth part was one of the motivations for this post, as Byung-Chul Han talks about Kant’s eternal peace, the author talks about human rights at a global and national level (in Germany obviously), on the occasion of the bicentenary text on Peace Kant’s perpetual, “The light of our historical experience”.

The book will have a no less thought-provoking fifth part on “the theory of discourse regarding the conception of democracy and the rule of law” (pg. 9) and this is all just the author’s preface, and the first topic is about the cognitive aspect of morality, which must be prior to the other chapters, as it presents its foundations.

The author writes: “moral manifestations bring with them a potential of motives that can be updated with each moral dispute” (pg. 10) and thus “moral rules operate by making references to themselves” (idem) and will establish “for this two levels retroactively coupled to each other” (pg. 12).

At the first level, they direct social action immediately, to the extent that they compromise the will of the actors and guide it in a determined way” (pg. 12).

At the second level, “they regulate critical positions in the case of conflict… it does not just say how members of the community should behave… it provides reasons to consensually resolve conflicts of action” and sees this in a way very analogous to Wittgenstein’s language games where polyphony is established.

The theme is close to Byung-Chul Han’s Narration Crisis because both, and this also includes John Rawls and Martin Buber although in quite different ways, as Han clarifies: “the face requires distance. He is a You, and not an available It” (pg. 96), and penetrating Communicative Theory, Habermas’ great thesis, Han sees so much in his idea of ​​psychopolitics in the Swarm from a digital perspective, that the only possibility of symmetry is respect , power relations are asymmetrical, and for him so are communicative ones.

Who is the Other, the one I meet and who is often very different from me, if he wishes me peace, says the biblical passage, we will sit and have dinner together.

Han, Byung-Chul (2023). A crise da narração (The crisis of narration). Trans. Daniel Guilhermino. Brazil, Petrópolis: ed. Vozes.

Habermas, Jürgen (2002) A inclusão do outro – Estudos de Teoria política. (Die Einbeziehung des Anderen Studien zur politischen Theorie). Trans. Georg Sperber, Paulo Astor. Edições Loyola, São Paulo, Brasil.




The disenchantment of the world and hope

10 Jun

War is the height of disenchantment, but it is reproduced in narratives, intolerance and small everyday wars that cause the expulsion of the Other, especially when there are different interpretations and visions of what the “facts” are, but they use small wars hidden in their narratives and in a restricted context where it is valid.

The disenchantment of the world, now taken up by the crisis in Byung-Chul Han’s narration, was once the theme of Max Weber who referred to the phenomenon as a process in which the modern subject began to strip away customs and beliefs based on inherited traditions or learned under the fixed pillars of religions or “magic”, nothing more convergent with Han, however it is important to understand how this penetrated the language.

To be coherent with the theme, the final chapter of the Narration Crisis (there is another one in I know it is Storyselling, but I opt for the resistance of the spirit), which we posted notes on last week, begins with the narration of Peter Nadás, of a village that gathered around a large wild pear tree, and there they tell stories to each other, it forms a narrative community “that carries values ​​and norms, intimately linking values ​​and norms” (Han, 2023, p. 121), in it the village indulges in “ritual contemplation”.

Nadás says at the end of his essay: “I still remember how, on hot summer nights, the village used to sing softly […] under the big wild pear tree […] Today there are no more of those trees, and the singing of the village has become silent” (Han, 2023, p. 122, citing Nadás), and “this community without communication gives way to communication without community”.

He imagines like other authors, even cites Kant’s Pax Eterna, but his philosophy also constructed the modern narrative, and says as Edgar Morin dreamed and imagines a radical universalism “a global family” beyond nation and identity (pg. 125  and says “poetry elevates each individual through a peculiar connection with everything else” quoting Schriften Novalis, and this narrative community rejects the exclusionary narrative of identity.

“Political action in an emphatic sense presupposes a narrative” (pg. 126) and presupposes a narrative coherence, recalls Hannah Arendt “for action and speech, whose close interrelationship in the Greek conception of politics we have already discussed [in this blog as well], are in fact the two activities that, in the last instance, always result in a story, that is, in a process that, however arbitrary and random it may be in its individual events and causes, it still has enough coherence to be narrated” (Han, 2023, p. 127), I remember in previous posts Arendt’s idea, also used by Byung-Chul of vita activa and vita contemplativa.

From the final chapter I take advantage of his “To live is to narrate. Humans, as animal narrans, differ from animals in that they are capable of realizing new forms of life through narration. Narration has the power of a new beginning” (pg. 132) which is a sign of hope for humanity in a growing crisis.

Han, Byung-Chul (2023). A crise da narração (The crisis of narration). Trans. Daniel Guilhermino. Brazil, Petrópolis: ed. Vozes.