The Thought of the Day: Philosophy and Realism
Many a time, my brain goes blank. The impact of philosophy, I guess. The brooding rises high above, far above the bounds of realism or the dictates of the moment. It is a question. It has been this way for so long. For the passing of a star, millions more take her place, and for the passing of each galaxy, an abundance of them light up the sky infinitely. How dare I, then, proclaim a victory over the question?!
And here is another thing: words tell me but nothing. Yore, I thought a word did in fact mean one thing, one and only. To me now, a word suggests numerous indications, including its most basic referent. But a word is also as hollow a container as any other hollow shell, fillable by anything, including by its very opposite. Such an aching joy!
May I understand, then?!
When I looked at the map the other day, I did not see borders, which the media and political analysts draw in color on a piece of paper. Instead, I saw many a shape jointly maneuvering the landscape. Ravines, hills, plains, mountains, valleys, and the sky all impress me as one variegated work of art, each piece harmoniously completing the other and imparting on it a substantial sense of continuity. “Borders” are by nature porous, except when walls are erected by men.
These days, refugees inundate Europe, to escape wars, famine, and bombs. The sight of traumatized women and their children trigger the thought: “This should not happen”. Then, I adjusted my thought thus: “These scenes shall be with the human race till the end of time. Some have had a taste of them, and others shall see their turn”. But time is infinite and suffering is an integral part of the human condition and the destiny of the human race.
With my feet on the ground, I shall deal with the issues straight-forward: “Let not your mind go blank. Replace the question of philosophy by the urgency of realism. Master the word with nuance. See borders even just on a map. Take immediate measures to protect vulnerable groups such as women, children, and the elderly.
In the exercise of education, I shall wear many hats. That way, I will be able to differentiate the colors. The moment of realism quickly slips into the questioning mindset of philosophy. At least, one can that way think of alternative options to negotiate and resolve conflict.
Time to block the noise in my head, with Karma, if that can be done.