What do you contribute to the world?

If art is not good philosophy than it is not art. If philosophy is not good art, it is not philosophy.As Heidegger stated, philosophy is raising the question: “Why is there being and not nothingness?” For art the same question is true. If art is not raising the most fundamental, extensive and original question it is not art. But this is not an intellectual exercise. For intellectualism, reasoning, scholarship and science are the enemy of art and philosophy, they are the enemy of live itself, they destroy, rape and kill. Real art and real philosophy is being connected to being. There is a pre-ontological knowing of what being, existence means, and we are the only creatures on the earth that are able to connect to this knowing. Connect, because although we all “know” that we exist, no one will ever be able to grasp being or existence in words or any other expression. As Lyotard said, we can be connected to it by showing a little fragment of it, thus suggesting the complete riddle of being. That’s what makes the Workers Shoes of my fellow Dutch artist Theo van Gogh real art. The painting just shows a pair of shoes from a farmer. Nothing more and nothing less. But it is not what you see that you see, it transforms itself in to a meta-physical allegory of being. It connects to this being and raises conscious or not directly the question: Why is there being and not nothingness? If you look long enough to it, it is disturbing, uncomfortable to look at and timeless and without context in its questioning. And what is also important: it is political: why is it that there are farmers and on the other hand people who don’t have to work for example. A question that is not just modern but it is a question since the oldest history of mankind.And let me explain very clear what the word meta-physics means. Because even this word is covered by the dirt that centuries of intellectualism, reasoning, bourgeois covering of reality and religion threw upon it.The word meta-phycis, was probably first used by Andronicus van Rhodos who delivered the books of Aristotle. Aristotle, the man that ended the great movement of philosophy of being the Greeks started, changing it into epistemology and into the more than criminal idea that knowledge and logic is more important than being. He thus is the father of our modern machine world. Thank you Aristotle. In this new Aristotelian tradition, our friend Rhodos did something only a scholar can do, he ordered the books of Aristotle, the idiot, and completely the way Aristotle would have loved. One of the books, called physics, he let follow with “meta tá fysica” , the books that follows the book called physics. This books had nothing to do with something that comes after physics but, the idea was seen by others, who arrested it and raped it by using it for their own purposes. The religious scholars used it to talk about their god and the ridiculous idea of an afterlife. The political powers used it to proof that there is a pattern in everything that gives them the arguments to behave as they do. Like Marx with his pattern of dialectic fight. Thanks to them millions of people were killed, because the pattern was more important than the people itself.Heidegger in the tradition of Nietzsche who did a lot of work in uncovering all this dirt from the original ideas of the pre-socratian philosophers, showed that if there is anything that follows upon physics, it is being itself. Following is expressed in terms of transcending. “Being” meaning as in being beyond physics.“Lets go back to the case itself” Husserl said ones and thus founding phenomenology. Let´s go beyond this era of epistemology, knowledge and technical science and come back to this question: Why is there being and not nothingness. And for me this is not a question that needs an answer, it is raising the question again and again so we can be aware of our position.Nothing is what it appears to be. Don’t see what appears, it is not what you see. Don´t read what you read, it is not what it means. Don’t hear what you hear, the sound is not there. As soon as we start to understand this, we start to understand the task of philosophy and art. It is us that make definitions of beings and make them things and thus rape them and take away their possibility of just being, which is limitless. Let´s make the world flat, let´s make the complexity of reality one moment flat. Lets make two groups of people, artists and everyday man. The Cronópios and Famas invented by Julio Cortazer. Everyday man, John Doe, John Average, wants everything to be covered up. It is his way of living. They say to each other: let´s forget being and cover up everything that is not nice. Let´s play the game of keeping up appearances. As Robert Laing said: “They are playing a game, they are playing the game that they are not playing a game. If I show them they are playing a game, they get angry”. Nobody wants to know what they know. Nobody wants to be confronted with reality, with being, with reality itself.They impose: Don’t talk about this most fundamental question! Don’t question the political consequences of it: why some people have everything and others, the majority nothing? Why is there being and not nothing?Let´s make the world flat and suggest there is a majority of bourgeois that´s aims to cover everything and a small group of artists and philosophers, that just life different, close to a place that Nietzsche called “Das Ungeheure”, Das ungeheure as abyss of all the things we have to question when we start to think but of wich we don’t have real answers. Questions like where are we now, where did we come from, where are we going to, why is there being and not nothingness. Only those that can raise these questions in its most profound way are real artist, are real philosopher.These few that really make art are not part of this covering. They are not the ones that make the things as they really are, those are the ones that “go back to the case itself! And for them the questions are manifold, the world appears new and fresh, every second again. And it becomes political. Why is it that the world is as it is and not different? Why is it that in a rich country like Brazil, where everything is available there is extreme welt and complete poverty? People come with reasons, not with answers and don’t even want to see the world they life in. The poor, that are the others, not us. In this exposition we see one answer. As the France philosopher Levinas stated: it is easy to open our hart, it is more difficult to open our purse, but it is almost impossible o open our doors for those who are different for us. It is almost impossible to make a photo of a homeless in the house of middle class Brazil. The process to make the final photo is much more interesting than the photo itself.In this way we have to understand the theme of the mask. The mask is manifold and ambiguous. Just to describe two ends of the endless possibilities the mask can represent. Nietzsche said to those that uncover, to those that discover: Everybody that is deep wears a mask. So wearing a mask for him was a way to survive, to life with those who do not question. The famas. He who challenged the complete western society in its nihilism, in its choice of a christian meta-physics, he who proposed a fundamental change of all the values: his revaluation of all values: going beyond good and evil. He, internal Dyonisus, he, internal dynamite, he internal having the power of a volcano, a thunderstorm that is still raging. He was known as a very gentle visitor of the hotels where he lived. He, in order to achieve his task, he wear a mask of gentleness in a bourgeois world of the violence of keeping up the appearances at all cost. He lived in his works. And on the other hand we have the mask of those that want to cover up. Those people that will never show themselves. Those who really believe that the personae they create is the same as the authentic self. This is the mask of violence. Protected by reason, sciences, all the defense mechanisms people develop, all their hiding from each other, not speaking up, not “Living in truth” as Vaclav Havel translated the Paresia of the noble of the Greeks: The obligation to always speak the truth. And truth not in the representative way of scientifical thinking. Truth as if that what some one says has to have a one to one connection with an object in the world.Truth in the meaning of the light some-one can shine on being. What is it that you think of any phenomena that you encounter? Thus creating difference and the start of dialog. Learning to question everything anew. Daring to go where nobody wants to go and shine light, uncovering discovering, raising questions a new, no matter what. Is this really a cauliflower or what? Is this really love or what. What possibilities of being does it hide? What do I not see when I look at it. Am I raping it by just making out of it something that suits me? Am I just a follower of fashion, giving meaning to things in order to avoid to shine my own light on it?
So this finally connects the first question of all questions: Why is there being and not nothingness?” to the most political question of all times: What do you contribute to the world?

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