Writing is an illusion, because with it there is the pretense of stopping time, of saying essential things, which faithfully reflect reality. But the real reality is the human relationship lived with freedom and truth. Only by itself can the relationship be adequately reflected.
The truth of the human relationship convinces us of its depth: every other attempt we must look at it with suspicion, consider it with relativity and approximation. Words have value only insofar as they speak of a real, existing, verifiable experience, and have meaning only when they are said, since their permanence (in writing) never in itself implies the permanence of the relationship to which they refer. This is why in the history of human thought there are often regressions, betrayals, with respect to the heights and depths of a given thought.
Men must do everything they can to safeguard the human relationship, the possibility of living it, the method to be able to live it. The rest can also be lost if there is an obstacle to achieving this goal.
Perhaps one day the claim of words (written above all) to fix something (a truth, a virtue, an interpretation …) will end: words can never replace facts. Furthermore, the claim does not stand the flow of time, indeed when it aspires to immortality, it is also revealed to be profoundly false and mystifying, since the truest sense of the words is relative to the context in which they were formulated, and the reality of this context is not it is never exactly reproducible (not even a photograph or a cinematographic shot can faithfully reproduce reality) and in any case the meaning of a specific reality escapes the understanding of those who are unable to identify themselves with its structure and dynamics (the which in a comprehensive way can never happen).
Words are valid as a sign of something else, that is, as a reference to something that is deeper than what they can indicate. It is not knowledge that sets you free. The Johannine expression: “The truth will make you free”, a flaw in intellectualism (or Gnosticism), since only freedom makes you free, and freedom is not the result of an acquisition of thought (as idealism wants). It is the fullness of life, the satisfaction of knowing that in social life there are no people subjected to humiliation and exploitation. Nobody has the right to feel free when there are a thousand ways of being slaves around him.
On the level of thought, the supreme form of man’s truth is tautology. “Man is what he is” and no word can hide the reality of man, no one can modify it without the intervention of the will. Tautology is not the end of thought, but its perfect conformity to practice. Indeed, tautology can be lived only in the present, according to the laws, values, and customs of the present, since the antagonistic contradiction can only be overcome in the present.
Therefore words must always be “weighed”, since they can very easily constitute a deception, a fiction, a useful tool to hide the emptiness of one’s life. Words are useful when they refer, like the wave of an echo, to an ongoing experience, practicable by the listener. Words are effective only in so far as they are applied: this criterion should easily discriminate speeches having an operating method from those which are ends in themselves. Without such practicality, words are useless, they are mere opinions and do not put men before their responsibilities. Man should come to live an experience whose credibility is so evident and immediate as to render any theoretical exemplification useless. But is this possible?
It may not be possible, but if it is not, then it is good to know that all writing is basically a form of alienation, a kind of mystification.
The excessive weight that we give to writing in our civilization is an indication of a separation between theory and practice, between being and having to be. We tell ourselves what we should be because we fail to be what we are, or what the most aware people would like to be, and the more we write things for having to be, the more we move away from being, since the multiplication of writing is sure index of growing alienation.
We in fact no longer know what being is. Our being there is like the screenplay of a film: pure form, devoid of substance. Our whole civilization is based on the appearance of forms that do not refer to anything significant for being, because they presume to justify themselves or in any case to justify a system of life against being.
Writing as a pretense of solving life’s problems is illusory, and writing as a mere observation of problems is futile. We are inundated with words that don’t really tell us anything, that don’t improve us. Words are now written on their own, they do not come from something significant, vital, essential for human life, but rather from the absence of something that should make us be.
Writing is the reflection of a society that no longer knows who it is, that has no memory of itself, which is composed of isolated atoms, devoid of social identity.
Writing is the pretense of giving meaning to life, after having done everything to remove the natural and human meaning it had from life itself, that which was transmitted through the generations, without any writing, but only orally. When there was the oral transmission of knowledge, his memory was better preserved.
Today we have no memory of anything. We rely on encyclopedic memories, purely notional ones, whose knowledge is only a huge amount of abstract notions, while our life, to be what it should be, needs only a few certainties, tested and tested by previous generations, in the course of centuries, indeed millennia.
All our encyclopedic knowledge, all our pervasive knowledge does nothing to help us improve our lives. We actually do not even know what are the most spontaneous and natural attitudes, thoughts, words that we should have, try, say …
Social relationships have become terribly complicated because on the one hand we cannot pretend that there have not been two thousand years of history in which we have tried to assert human and natural values, and on the other we are nevertheless aware that these values have never been realized, and the discrepancy between theory and practice today is leading us to madness.
They tell us that to defend ourselves from abuse, corruption, arrogance … it is enough to know how things are. But even this knowledge is only illusory, both because it is manipulated and selected at the source, and because ultimately it does not serve us to improve the quality of life. We remain what we are, or rather what we are not , regardless of the knowledge we have.
Having the pretense of saying something original with writing, regardless of the life you live, is pure illusion. The originality lies precisely in not needing writing to feel true.
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Writing has a very limited value since the pretense of theoretical coherence is illusory. And even more illusory is the attempt to want to put into practice what has theoretically asserted itself in contexts other than those in which a specific theory has been formulated.
Theoretical coherence is all the more sought after the less one is capable of practical coherence, and practical coherence must be nothing other than a commitment to the affirmation of freedom for all. Any abstract loyalty to principles makes no sense.
A subject who has revolutionary ideas and is unable to apply them, will easily try to compensate for this frustration by producing revolutionary theory in writing. But such a theory is useless, because it is too abstract or scholastic or dogmatic. Truth is not something one can say “here it is”.
The truth of a thing is never the patrimony of an individual or a group of intellectuals, but is always the result of a direct social relationship between the masses and the awareness of their needs. So it is something very fluid, subject to constant changes.
An authentically revolutionary individual is constantly in contact with people and does not have time to write or in any case is aware that it is not by writing that social problems are solved.
Social problems are solved socially, with the active participation of the people. If there is no possibility to resolve them in an administrative, social or peaceful way, then the question becomes political, conflictual or even revolutionary.
To make revolutions you don’t need “writing”: you need weapons, masses, legal and illegal organization, open and clandestine.
It is a very serious mistake to blindly trust what others have previously written on the subject. We must build on the context in which we live and act with the people who live there.
More important than any theory are the needs of the people, who must find satisfaction with the help of the same people. If you focus on theory, intellectuals will inevitably exploit the needs of ordinary people in order to acquire personal power.
* * *
The writing process is closely linked to the formation and development of civilizations (historically, therefore, it was born about 6,000 years ago), in the sense that the more they improve, the more we tend to give importance to the written word.
It seems that this replaces tradition, fills an existential void, intervenes between real life and the lack of social relationships.
Writing basically serves to deceive the ignorant masses, to keep them submissive, to guarantee the separation of classes, castes, social classes.
It is not only a form of personal illusion, the claim of a formal, abstract, illusory antithetical coherence to an alienated life, devoid of true meaning, it is also a form of social coercion, in that culture is made to coincide with erudition, the knowledge of a people with the knowledge of the intellectual.
The knowledge of the popular tradition, transmitted over the centuries, over the millennia, through the oral transmission of the generations, has been arbitrarily replaced by the knowledge of individual reflection or of small privileged groups, detached from the people, who in the name of writing, scientific and encyclopedic knowledge , have imposed respect for forms of civilization that have nothing of human and natural.
To the point that today we identify history with writing and call “prehistory” everything that precedes writing.
There is only one way to take away its primacy from writing: to live social relationships according to nature, to put nature at the center of one’s interests, shared by a collective.
We must take away from writing its illusory and coercive power.
Coherence does not lie in the logic of words, but in full respect for the laws of nature; without this respect writing is inevitably used as a form of deception towards those who do not master it.
Writing is, in the context of antagonistic civilizations, a powerful weapon in the service of classes that have political and economic power.
The social figure of the intellectual must be greatly reduced.
The intellectual must only become the one who best protects the interests of nature, the one who best conveys the knowledge useful for this protection.
There is no way to accomplish this if we do not make possible a social experience of “nature” that makes the latter emerge from the logic of exploitation typical of antagonistic civilizations.
* * *
We need to live life, which can never coincide with words, both in the sense that words have the power to mystify things, making a life that is not appear significant; both in the sense that, even if words express real life, this is always something more than his words.
Words should be measured, weighed, reduced to the essentials, precisely for fear of saying more than life allows us. We cannot risk having what the Indians called a “forked tongue”, otherwise, when we tell the truth, we will not find anyone willing to believe it. And in our solitude, when it comes because of us, we certainly cannot react with force: the truth does not know what to do with it.
Truth does not necessarily lie in sincerity, but it certainly helps to find it. Perhaps the truth does not even have the words to be said: the truth can only be felt , just as life can only be lived . And those who claim to induce the truth only with words certainly have no more chance than those who want to induce falsehood using the same words.
In itself, words are useless, and indeed it cannot be excluded that human beings understood each other better, in the past, when they had few words or when they didn’t need to say many things. Not because when there are fewer words, there is less possibility of misunderstanding, or because with lesser needs we understand each other more easily, but because, in the past, it was life in common that clarified things, making words superfluous or, at least the words, the most important ones, were not used to understand each other, but only to say each other : they were poetic, musical words, in which the other was easily recognized precisely because they came from the same life.