About time: who makes time?

13.01.2021 - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil  - Eduardo Alves

This post is also available in: Portuguese

About time: who makes time?
uenos Aires, 29-12-2020. Women celebrate the achievement of a utopia. (Image: la vaca, Mu)

To clear up any potential confusion, this text does not intend to discuss or portray in any way the seasons. We could say that the natural differences named seasons were baptised by human beings. What was natural has now been mixed socio-historically around homo sapiens, which makes its natural effects and consequences far greater than its apparently natural impacts.

However, when it comes to the seasons, even without knowing much, without having experienced the maximum impact of each one or the deepest impact on human biology, at least the vast majority would exclaim: spring, summer, autumn and winter. Even if all vectors of common sense are barriers to knowledge, conscience and freedom, they are not barriers to communication. All communications have an objective, even if it’s not presented or clarified, or disguised in the sophism that organises people, even more so in present times. But apart from that, we have “all the dreams in the world” within us. So, it is worth asking after all: Is this a dystopian time? Is there a dystopian time? Is there a utopian time? Who makes time into something, all or nothing?

Even with the impact of the natural effects that exist in the world, such as what’s known as gravity, it is human beings that make time exist. Indeed, they are not all the same, they encounter differences and inequalities. The private and oligarchic appropriation of the most COMMON, the most “natural”, already utterly denaturalised by human intervention, indicates the basis of the existing conflicts, confrontations and multiple tensions. In this movement, among other impacts over time, utopias and dystopias experienced multiple and varied conflicts. There is nothing natural about the predominance or hegemony of any aspect absolutely formed in history by humans, and time cannot chart it. The patterns blur in multiple conflicts between utopias and dystopias and in the powerful friction that exists in the confrontation of meanings pushed by people in time.

Movement is part of nature, but social movements are created by humans. In social relations, there is no apoptosis, but in living beings there is, programmed of course, and cells die and create a balance of multicellular organisms, such as the human body, for example. This process of historical and social conflict is determined by the movement of power and interests: this supreme power, which appropriates nature and all the things or beings that could be organised to stir the accomplishment and expansion of human creative power. There are, therefore, many challenges for human beings who recognise themselves as living subjects to carry out an unnatural “apoptosis” in defence of life. Herein lies the challenge of utopian time, in the present, in life, materially and symbolically, for these human beings in every chronology of existence. For there is no such thing as dystopian or utopian time; in time there is. And everything else is the action of humans in history, under the concrete conditions of life in society and built by humanity. In this sense, the ideology that supports naturalisation or dehumanisation of historical times wants to attribute a human quality to time: it is not time that organises us, it is we who organise time, under certain conditions. So we are the ones who act in history to change it in our favour or against us. Attributing qualities to current times means naturalising what is social and historical and, with that, dismissing the power that we have in changing the course of history. Fetishising time is a conservative movement: it assigns to it a divinity under which we bow, resign and obey. To say that we are in a dystopian time or that we are subjected to the cyclical movement of historical time, is nothing more than to remove from ourselves the conditions to act tangibly in history and dispute its course. It is the same as holding the new coronavirus responsible for the health crisis and the thousands of deaths, instead of recognising its historical and human origin – the way we deal with Nature, animals and the environment – and, above all, the political nature of the crisis.

Thus, utopian time must be organised by people who want changes in the structural and superstructural domain of power – it will not blow up in natural syntheses. And in that same organisation of thoughts and actions, there is no dystopian time. There is the dystopia imposed by those in power or even those who, without holding a position of power, live the ideologies of destructive sophism regarding life. Thus, it becomes easier to engage in the romanticism necessary to buy, isolate, distance oneself than in collective revolutionary actions that are impulses for the obstructed creation to open cracks of presence in the world. In other words, dystopian time does not exist: dystopian ideology is created by human beings and, even when it inconveniences other humans, if there are no utopian movements in favour of a full life, cell death prevails in people without any natural movements to maintain balance. In contrast, what prevails in any version of dystopia, the most romantic, exciting or disastrous, are movements that reinforce oppression and exploitation. After all, these are the movements that prevail in the capitalist world.

This is, therefore, a great challenge of our time: building utopias that unify different people to overcome, with the multiple singularities built, what is imposed by people who dominate power, but do not dominate time. We are the subjects of our time, whether we know it or not, whether we like it or not, whether we want it or not, we are subjects of our time, each one of us humans. And we are stronger with the collective intelligence that multiplies the cells of thinking and doing in defence of life. This is the great utopian movement of our time.

Getting utopia to overcome dystopia poses challenges with knowledge, with the community, in the most profound and collective coexistence among non-unequal people. Whatever the dystopia, whether it’s driven by the desire to return to the past – which will not exist – with all the romanticism, or by the more violent practices and ideas that acquire primordial status in the aesthetics of wars, or by the influences of feelings and sensations associated with anomalous placement of organs, be it due to the emotional, psychic, aesthetic and fundamentally eschatological affectation of ideology, it will not be this that will sustain the engine of change that we want. On the contrary, it will be the construction of a utopian, substantially unified, compassionate and active time that will lead us to the principles necessary for this change. And in any case, it is not peace that cries out to us. What calls us in our utopia is the broadest collective formation and action that overcomes barriers, so that collective intelligence and creative human power can pulsate in humanity. It is up to us, with only the workforce to survive, and which we achieved as subjects of the revolution in favour of life, to create the most fertile road for humanity in broad, dignified and profound humanisation. Let’s create a UTOPIAN time.

 

Translation by Madalena Translation from the voluntary Pressenza translation team. We are looking for volunteers!

Categories: Human Rights, Opinions, Politics, South America
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