THE ORIGIN OF CULTURE


Probably, this isn’t the best way to do this is.  No one knows if, by writing this, something changes. It might be considering a lot of nonsense word, or not. I´m aware of the “language problem”, because English is not well dominated for me by now. But, nevertheless, I think that it gives the right message this way, on this method, on this form.

First of all, truth be told, I live in a country that has been sold almost entirely. Practically everything is controlled by foreign enterprises, and the ideas (political, philosophical, economical, scientific, esthetic, and so on), that people use to talk about if they are a little serious, also came from different continents and places. And because of this situation, people around here live in a constant sense of indetermination, fear, worry and hard-work. A lot of hard-work. For me, a single man, born from a simple family without luxuries, regards or excess of joy, it has been the main problem of today´s society.

Let me explain. It´s a big problem, not only for political reasons. That´s obvious. The idea of using other people´s ideas causes more troubles that this particular details. The problem touches the fields of our consciousness, in the sense of a community of humans that uses the ideas to “live” and survive. When the ideas you are using arises from your own thoughts, a quality of identify emerges. In fact, not only from the capacity of thought, but also from your feelings, your emotions, from the all content of the consciousness. The making of ideas is the essence of identity.

Due to this factor, in this part of the world (especially in Chile), the ordinary man don´t have that identify with his thoughts, because none of them were born from him. Except in procedimental ideas (what should be done, where I will live, and so on), the concepts of culture, the theoretic “approaches” to daily life, the objects used every day, or the even language to communicate, all of this came, almost entirely, from other latitudes. So, we can see the absence of this particular element of consciousness in the ordinary person. The identity is missing. People are trying to “grab” any kind of identity, from outside -any style or tendency- and inside – invent some identity feature.

Historically, we also don´t have any attachment or element that helps our empty culture. Instead, our country was born from the war between continents, the war of time and progress, that inevitably brings about the sense of alienation and the feeling of isolation. We can´t feel like ancient Europeans, neither South Americans. And the problems grows, with the very complex situation of considering this particular part of the continent like independent from the northern one. Even if we consider South America as “separate” from North, and accept with liking the Latin identity, then appears the other issue of being very different from other southern nations like Venezuela, Argentina, Paraguay, Colombia o Brazil. The differences are many, not only in economics, but also in ways of live.

In our Chilean Education, we teach the concept of Identity and Culture almost in the final years of the whole process. On these final steps of every student, he has to face the question of what kind of person he is, at first, and then translate that insight to the culture that he is in, later on. One can see, in the process of a single man or in his own existence, that this missing content of consciousness produces tremendous consequences in life. We are so used to being guided, taught, not to make theories or question the existing ones, that our minds becomes lazies, not skillful, and we tend to accept all ideas from other countries, even without think about them in many cases. 

In Chile, the new ideas create fear. And the people which live with fear, are likely to be dominated by politic, religious, army, etc. But consciousness, in this epistemological source, means actually “the knowledge of everyone”. All putted together, is consciousness. So is not mine, or yours, is only consciousness. And, inside of that, as a part of it, should it be our identity? Our ideas? Our theories? So, if the sense of identify is missing from consciousness, in this part of the world, in this country, it brings about the whole problem that is going on.

However, if the actual situation had only that consecuence, it would be a very small difficult. But the problem goes beyond that. The mere “necessity” of identity emerges from a very long time ago, from the origins of our human existence as a group or community. We define “ourselves” because we feel it different from other´s. And we extend that difference to consciousness, dividing all part of it in fragments, united or no united, creating division. All the differences (that essentially there is only a few of them because there is a lot more of common elements) is what we call “identity”, and the same differences, extended to the level of countries, is what we call “culture”. So, “culture” is no more than all the differences of groups of people. Culture is division. That’s obvious!

We call “culture” to all this features and elements that conforms the differences between us.  And we are usually proud of having one (that´s what is expecting to do, at least), according to common sense. But, these elements are, precisely, the principal factor of division and limit that prevent union and joining all together!

Because of this, seeking for our culture only will bring more division, conflict and separation. Of course, the successful conformation of a determinate “Chilean Culture” will gives the identity, but only in a minimum scale, for a short time, and will separate us more and more from the rest the world. In this times of reflection, where the weeks running on are trying to remember to us all kinds of historic days, facts and events, is when our sense of identity arises. And it does, coincidentally, after the national celebrations of independency (with all the questioning about it).

In a city like Concepción, this feeling of doubt and discontent is shown in the faces of everyone. As I told back, we have to deal with the absence of identity in a daily life. But the ideas, when they are created by ourselves, have the quality of communication and replication. An original idea, or at least some part of it, can go through all of us, person by person, like an esthetic form of sound that contaminates the heart of a sensible human being.  We are trying to talk, loud and clear, to the people out there that has been free themselves of the illusion of culture. Free of the illusion of differences and divisions. Because those illusions are prevent the change. Simple as that.

So we send this thoughts, on this way and in this words, in order to transform Concepción city in the kind of place that allows the spirit of freedom, wisdom, change and intelligence. Because we believe that this country, with all this differences, problems, troubles and mistakes, can go beyond the impediments of tradition, and generates the kind of understanding that all people needs.

So, no one knows if this is the best way to do this. But at least, I like to think that is not the only way. Otherwise, we are doomed.


Text: Kalistero

Etiquetado:  culture thepenquist