Culture perplexes me existentially and I think I have a personal vendetta against it.
I am too constantly aware of social institutions (micro and macro), and I have gotten to the point where I believe that everything is culture (since I believe that the nature culture dichotomy is a extremely flawed conception of the world). But I realize that I am constantly attempting to strip my own self of ‘cultural trends’- in the guise, as I put forth purportedly, to subsequently become a human being who is conscious of the fabrics of her relations within this world. I would become one who lives in full awareness of why it is I live. I would become fully aware of why it is I do the things I do, an ineffable answer to which I would have arrived after I consciously reconstructed myself. This means that I believe that it is possible for myself to not only comprehend (objectively? purely? honestly?) every aspect of my life, although their intricacies would most likely become amalgamated into broad overgeneralized concepts… it would also mean that I BELIEVE that at one point in my life, before I start ‘reconstructing’ myself, I will be Pure Animal without culture. First off, this is ridiculous. Secondly, this contradicts my belief that there is no such thing as an opaque line that distinguishes the ‘cultural’ realm from the ‘natural’ realm. I, who on first sentence herein, declared that I have a personal vendetta against culture, want to STRIP myself of culture in order to choose for myself THE quintessially wholly manipulated culture. This is the most pathetic thing. I am a lost soul!
I have to redirect my life. I am an Animal. I rather be an animal than a cultural thing.
I extoll intuition, and have been constantly nurturing my vagrant hippy desire to live back on land, in the brush. Yet, I spend my life studying the cultural; that concept is so undefinable… I think it should be referred to always as Human Culture. Everything has a culture. Yet, people believe that human culture is distinct from all others because we are the only ones who are conscious about said culture. We have the power to change our lives. But we believe that animals do not have this power. !!! Therefore, we become superior beings, because we have deemed ourselves so! HOW obvious that we would name OUR OWN species the superior species. I bet all animals do that; or better yet, no they don’t! We are the only ones conceited enough, self-centered enough to come up with such a vain idea. But we do so, and I believe in some sense we from the Western world are all ‘aware’ of this so-called superiority. We now ‘own’ everything. We ‘own’ the land. And our language, and these ideas, permeate our manifest world, so much so that they create our entire conception of it. We no longer SEE nature, SEE the forest, we SEE the idea of the forest, we SEE what nature is to us, we SEE how we feel about it. We see with our ideas. We taste with our culture. But perhaps all beings are like that. If thought process structures the way we do things, and the way we manipulate the world, well this means that we’ve always had thought, since we have all been active since birth, and this is true of our entire species. And if all action, (inaction is still action!) follows thought (our mindful consciousnesss/awareness/assessment of the world as seen or felt by senses), then why should that be restricted to Humanhood? All species, everything that breathes.
You’ve got the humans species, superior to the animals. Interstingly enough, within the human species womb, you’ve got human ‘genotypes’ that are superior to other human ‘genotypes. This now is known as Racism. It took us a damn long time to tag that word, and to react to the message it conveys. I wonder how long it will take us to realize that species superiority is racism? But alas, perhaps it is not. Racism is a concoction of the human mind, a creation of our culture, and therefore to perceive species superiority as racist would be off. Perhaps it is our intuitive natural selves that strive to superiority; to become the King of the Jungle. But when you realize that all ideas, like the imagery of the ‘king of the jungle’, or the concept of ‘superiority’ are in fact cultural creations of an expanding mind-consciousness… then you begin to realize that words and ideas have no unanimity… they grow exponentially in numbers. Perhaps on the 22nd there will be felt on this here earth a great shifting of energies, and we will all be astounded at the revelations of a Oneness of Love. But if that doesn’t happen, there will always be popular currents of thought, popular systems of beliefs, popular ways of life. But perhaps this is what is going to happen… back it up back it up… to a time where there are different peoples living in different areas of the world, all distinct from one another in their traditions/geographies/beliefs. Fast forward in time, development of technology facilitate voyage and transportation, population growth, curiosity, sharing of ideas.. than we become inevitably, more and more influenced by the people we meet. Cultures adapt to other cultures, wars, allies… Cultures reinterpret themselves, emphasize values as to distinguish themselves from others… but amalgamation process has Begun. We now are moving in a more similar direction, believing in many of the same ideas worldwide, creating institutions that regulate the entirety of the world. The Council of the World. Earth becomes One Country, run by those peoples that hold most Powers. We all slowly convert to one or two unifying languages… Mandarin and English. Then we all start speaking an english mandarin slang for some centuries… then we become One peoples. We have become now, one culture, one peoples. BUT BUT BUT. it is my BELIEF that in fact, this unified peoples will be the most un-unified peoples of all times, since all would be so estranged from themselves.
“I must create my own System or be enslaved by another man’s / My business is not to reason and compare; my business is to create” – William Blake
Man must either live by a System which has been created by another, or he must live by a system created by himself. If a man lives by a system thrice removed thirty five times remarried and five times bastardized, it might be hard for him to get a grasp on his ‘identity’. Imagine a young child, and he’s in a room in which 5 people are holding a violin in 5 different ways. Now, you take the child aside, and you tell the child: ‘Child, I want you to hold that violin up.’ Well, that child is going to either choose one of the techniques he saw employed by all the others, or he will choose to hold it as he pleases. Replace ‘holding a violin’ with everything and anything you can think of that is related to humans, and you get an idea of the sheer grandiosity of sociocultural human development. This is NOT how children learn; there is no time for this. There is commonly one way to do things, and the child learns that way. Now, it might so happen that innately the child feels that strong pull to do things his way; those are the great spirits. They stick out. Now, this is analogy is relevant, as it helps understand the immensity of decision making it would imply for a social individual to feel at ease with being ‘themselves’ in a cosmopolitan world. If every generation, people are becoming ever so unique in their ways because of this pot-pourri of cultures in which we live, then people will keep on getting more and more unique. This is what is happening in Academia! We are stripping subjects down to their core, picking at intricacies in surfaces, or reinterpreting them completely. There are so many of us humans researching the same topics that we need to come up with intricately and artistically specific co-related/interconnected subjects. Everything is being investigated under a magnifying glass, and they keep on creating new ‘stronger’ magnifying glasses… so we keep on keeping on the investigations!
I must therefore take this New Found knowledge of myself, and apply it to my life. It must be revisited constantly – this new organ will not be atrophied.