Like consciousness is always consciousness of something (if you believe Husserl), making sense is always to someone, to some particular first-person singular. It’s interior, private, personal. That makes sense to me. But I have to ask you, Does this make sense to you?Continue reading Making sense
If black lives mattered, then all lives would matter. If women’s lives mattered, then all lives would matter. If Jewish lives mattered, then all lives would matter. Black in the racialised sense of “not white”. Such that mattering would mean the abandonment of white supremacy.Continue reading Living matters
Continue reading “The luxury of isolation”
So I find myself thinking, if there’s this group of people, who are being labelled “essential”, but are being treated as sacrificial, [and] then there’s this other group of people, who are at home – like us, right? – who have the luxury of isolation. So what are we, if we’re not essential? [laugh] Are we superfluous? Are we being kept like pets? For who? What is our role?’ ~ Naomi Klein
(in conversation with Arundhati Roy, A Global Green New Deal: Into the Portal, Leave No one Behind, 19 May 2020, Haymarket Books, 26:15–26:44)
I am so tired of all the posturing. The lines drawn to keep everything in its place and everyone accountable. The absurd insistence that people do not change.
Consider the Anthropocene. A couple of centuries of industrialisation and empire – mere decades, not even a tick in geological time – and boom, our own epoch is etched upon the earth.
So, yes, things change. It was not ever thus and will not be thus forever. People change. May we get on with it. Amen.Continue reading For a post-millenarian philosophy
Last week, I had the pleasure of addressing a conference of family mediators in Cape Town on the topic of “Wisdom in mediation”.
First story. An ethics professor once said to an undergraduate philosophy class, “If you believe that a professor of ethics is an ethical person, you are making a category mistake.” The students recognised that this was true. At the same time, at least one of them thought, “Yes, but you ought to be.”Continue reading QA 60. None the wiser (On the obligation and cultivation of wisdom)
Beating the opponent at his own game. The pluck and courage of the underdog to outwit and overcome. Why does this strike everyone (I’m talking to you, Western culture) as a good trope? Underdog becomes top dog, it’s still a dog.Continue reading underdog schmunderdog
These “mixed feelings” of yours. If you have no reason to feel the way you do, and yet you do, it doesn’t necessarily mean that there is no reason (you are irrational), or that you’re wrong to feel that way (you are mistaken), or that you should feel otherwise (you are dissolute).Continue reading equivocation, ambivalence
My review of Jill Stauffer’s excellent and important book, with a special focus on what it means for counselling.Continue reading Review of Jill Stauffer (2015) Ethical Loneliness: The Injustice of Not Being Heard
What did it mean: to join the Party? Brecht says it best. I was not an exploiter, so I could grasp it.
To dedicate oneself to a more human society. For justice and peace, bread and roses. Against exploitation and oppression. Against all odds. To understand the indivisibility of freedom. To adopt José Martí’s willingness to share one’s fate con los pobres de la tierra. To know the world again, differently, in many dimensions, ranged along new coordinates. Eyes open, edgy. To become serious, disciplined, responsible. To get over oneself, forsaking singular, private prides and fears. A kind of loving, of deference.Continue reading QA 59. To be a comrade
Annals of philosophical counselling/practice with others
“But it doesn’t work like that!” I say this in response to some proposed scheme or strategy of yours. I mean that, in terms of what you want to achieve, what you are doing seems either futile or malicious because you have a mistaken view about what’s going on. (I could be wrong, of course. We can talk about that.)Continue reading QA 58. “But it doesn’t work like that!”