it is a problem that cannot be solved just by intimacy, by saying that we should be good and love one another. we have to translate that into another thing in which economy itself, in its own radical fundamental conception, perhaps now is bound to change.
By ro / lu in misc
Published: Friday, 30 March 12 - 09:00 AM (GMT -06:00)
Last Updated: Saturday, 31 March 12 - 12:46 AM (GMT -06:00)
marina abramovic made me cry portraits - marco anelli
hello brothers and sisters, it's claudette the intern.
i have a confession to make as i bring to you the shifting paradigm, the 5th and last bit in the art meets science and spirituality in a changing economy video series. i sort of cheated. i didn't just watch the videos and then came up with the very astute commentary i've indulged in, week after week after week after week after week. ;-) no, i also read unedited transcripts of the panel discussions at this fascinating symposium, collected in this volume, which also includes biographical texts, images of art works and extra interviews by awesome louwrien wijers. it has been great and so has this whole exercise. i am aware of the inevitable discomfort engendered by references to spirituality but i do hope, at the very least, to have entertained you a little.
let's go right to it, shall we? on this panel, we have artist marina abramovic, scientist fritjof capra, spiritualist raimon panikkar and economist hj wittveen.
unlike in previous panels where the scientists philosophically dominated the discussions, this one, in my opinion, goes to raimon panikkar. in the introduction, panikkar is said to live on the boundaries between europe, america and asia; hinduism, buddhism and christianity; philosophy, science and theology; mysticism and prophecy…. and i quote. wow. and yet, with that medley of credentials, he's a simple and eloquent thinker. here are some of his ideas. nicely enough, these are compatible with some of abramovic's.
the problems the world faces are overwhelming, yes. but, what concerns panikkar is the framework itself in which the world operates. the period of western reformation is over and now, according to panikkar, we have to head towards a complete transformation, a metamorphosis. and that is difficult.
"this study has the humble, and thus courageous, ambition of contributing to a radical re-orientation of contemporary man by situating him in a 'open horizon' embracing the millennia of human experience crystallized in the different cultures of the world. it is a sin of pusillanimity [n. lack of courage] to believe that man has no memory beyond that of his individual history. the very language we speak and the biology which sustains our lives manifest in a condensed way the experiences of innumerable generations."
marina abramovic takes cues from those millennia of human experience crystallized in the different cultures as a starting point in her work as an artist. she partially credits her ability to sit motionless for days, to her time spent with the pintubi peoples of the red plains of central australia. it is there - the literal and proverbial desert - that she went through what she calls a "mental transformation" and her work shifted from incredible, self-inflicted/initiated physical strain to the increasingly psychological. fear is extremely important if you ask abramovic, so is losing fear by breaking the patterns of everyday life. if i understand it correctly, abramovic is more interested in the state of the mind, her own, and how it can be stretched to its absolute limit, to a higher state of consciousness, in order to be without fear.
fear of change in entitlement is what panikkar sees as the modern man's greatest dilemma. we own. we hate and fear not owning. when there in no principle of entitlement, there is nothing to fear. it is not that we shouldn't own; the essential thing is to be non-attached to what it is that we own. there's a difference between detachment and non-attachment according to panikkar. to achieve this non-attachment, panikkar suggests simple contemplation (a sort of reflection, like jcj van heyden would call it). contemplation is the act of looking inward, focusing on the mind itself. but we don't have to be abramovics. contemplation takes you slightly closer to that mental limit abramovic is comfortable with. to be contemplative in this day and age is to be à rebours, against the grain, or radical which is probably one of the panikkar's most used words during the discussion, making him my personal favorite panelist.
brian redhead (the moderator) asks: "how does one make, from this new perception, that mental jump?"
panikkar responds: "by jumping."
please jump today.
posted by claudette gacuti
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