Friday, August 18, 2006

Humanism and Humanists

There are some persons that are quite puzzling. Defining themselves as humanists, which theoretically should deal with human potential and self-determination, they exhibit troublesome behaviours.

Some advocate psychology as a science, that is, a hard science. What would be the difference between psychology and psychiatry then? And, supposing psychiatry does not exist, what would be the difference between psychology and neurology? But above all, if in psychology you want to find science, why do you go transpersonal?

Others write weird sarcastic poems directed at whoever happens to disagree with them (in full respect of the other person's self-determination I guess), thinking they have proven to be humanists just because they either have
(a) been students of May, Rogers and/or Maslow (as if all the students of Einstein understood what he formulated...);
(b) consistently campaigned for some (pseudo)left-leaning cause (does humanism imply leaning toward the left? I don't think there is an equation that proves a causal relationship between the two things and if there were many of these persons wouldn't have the mathematical background to understand it HAR HAR), and
(c) studied humanism for all their lives (which would, optimistically speaking, JUST prove that they know what humanism means, it still doesn't say jacksh*t about their ontology... but since they are psychologists rather than philosophical guys they miss the difference and dress up the logical findings and implications with a huge lot of rhetoric).

On quite the opposite stand, but with similar consequences, there are the ones that put all human experience in the category of humanism, including absurd stuff like "insight during psychotropic drugs" which is an oxymoron in itself (again, read Parmenides: "the not-being is not, and can not in any way be" --- either "insight" or "psychotropic drugs" folks, but they have to absolutely keep their anti-science dogmatic stand).

Another subatomic pair is the angered pessimistic one (did I say gender-biased, left-leaning, victimist, whiney "professional" that in the name of humanism bashes a human creature -- often George W Bush -- who she happens not to agree with???) and his/her joyful superficial counterpart. The latter systematically overlooks pain and negative situations, speaks of self-actualization while starving or being at war as if s/he has personally endured all those situations (and it's true that most of what one does depends on how s/he decides to react to it, but a little bit more respect for people in pain would be expected from a humanist).

But the angered and pessimistic one goes along with another quark as well: the "I'm-so-holier-than-thou-then-everytime-I-get-p*ssed-I-blame-it-on-your-culture-or-what-you-said-or-what -you-did-or-how-you-understood-Rogers-because-it's-impossible-that-the-problem-is-me" (by now everybody knows she has no problem HAR HAR).

How about self-actualizing, but for real? Not following that relativistic cr*p that we are spoon-fed from each and every school of thought on the planet (religions excluded)... I mean business, real business.

I mean adults able to look at themselves and at their patterns, able to correct them, able to take and give feedback in an HEALTHY way, able to survive and thrive without resorting to the classical defense mechanism (Freud's) and see humanism as a "la la" land where everybody can spit nonsenses and be claimed right, sense-making, or intelligent.

I mean adults "buying" into humanism and self-actualization because it makes sense to the bottom of their hearts, not out of fear of rejection/judgment, fear of being wrong, lack of capability of accepting feedback and criticism, and impossibility to grow up!

I mean adults buying into humanism despite being able to correct one's own patterns (ie: even when they wouldn't need to "forgive themselves", "value their ideas", etc etc).

I mean, adults.

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Blogger Dan said...


Ah, so good to visit here! You haven't lost your edge. What you are writing reminds me of RD Laing's famous little book of puzzles called, Knots.

Here's the first one:

"They are playing a game. They are playing at not playing a game. If I show them I see they are, I shall break the rules and they will punish me. I must play their game, of not seeing I see the game."

Best to you always

9:25 am  

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