Psychology as a social device

(If you use psychology, you trust its functioning, you feel sick, etc … probably this presentation of ideas may not be for you)

Psychology (as a social device) abstracts all the concrete conditions that make us up in an abstract and unreal way, in this sense it mocks reality and denies it.

Its purpose as “science” is to create a series of abstractions and generalities that describe the “human being”, regardless of any characterization that makes it concrete. All scientific or knowledge methodology tends to seek the most general concepts of its “field of knowledge”, this choice is always a critical moment, a selection, an elimination of other possibilities.

But this choice becomes meaningful the moment it is made, discarding all other possible options.

“Scientific” psychology masks concretions in favor of political generalizations. Policies because they ignore the powers operating in each individual, policies because the selection of generalities is congruent with a way of operating in society, consistent with their powers.

All those characters adapted to the market and production are enhanced, which become virtues. On the other hand, it is found in deficiencies, negativities, absences, unadapted characters. Those from whom labor, capital or submission cannot be extracted.

They are political generalizations precisely because of their ability to mask differences and all the aspects that individualize each circumstance.
It equates and identifies all the factors, simplifying a model so that only individuals and circumstances exist. The funny thing is that such individuals and such circumstances are never equal to each other, and their differences would really be the key to understanding the problems.

On the other hand, a medical-administrative division by genders, races, ages, classes would only have a statistical purpose and would not go out of the scheme in any sense. In a way it would only sarcastically deepen the masking.

“Scientific” psychology acts as a biological and medicalizing closure of the explosive energy of each individual. It institutionalizes and is institutionalized, elaborates and establishes normalities and abnormalities.

If all this were not enough, medicalization and pharmacologization generate “patients” as any other industry generates its products.

It locates suffering, or what it considers an absence or lack, in an isolated conceptual place, and denies the possibility of linking that place with a discourse that links different general and concrete aspects of human life; to extract relations of power and injustice in that network where discomfort appears.

It uses universal teleological postulates, which define a priori everything that has not yet been covered by humanity.

To illustrate what I mean, I will give an example. To specific individuals who feel bad in a group or when interacting, a generality such as: “human beings are social” is blurted out, which acts as a deductive and casuistic theorem or etiology (science of causes).

It serves both to discover the abnormal and to prescribe a solution. In addition to serving as a moral and behavioral rule.

We do not know if such a statement is intended to be an ethical imperative or if it rather refers to a biological configuration as a species. If it is the first case, free choice should preside over that imperative, if it is the second we find ourselves in the murky waters of natural species and their characteristics of normality and abnormality.

Only if we could place ourselves outside the world, outside the real, outside of time could we verify this postulate about the sociability of human beings, their meaning, their need or their intensity.

In our real world, we are beings shaped by circumstances, classes, races, sexes, economic power, hierarchical relationships … and anchored to a history and a never resolved future.

How can we know in advance the content of those universals that direct the inner life of human beings?

***
An anarchist or libertarian psychology should not define human principles and capacities a priori, it should, on the contrary, denounce every micro power and subordination that generates frustration. It should point out every painful element in every vital circumstance. Show alternatives to the cultural, political and social structures that generate frustrations.

The universal index to which their universals would be directed would be a vector direction, and each atom of individual concretion would be “moments” of that nebula of directions. The universal postulates would no longer be defined but with the passage of time they would fill with meaning.

We still do not know what the human being has to be, we cannot define it according to the needs of a historically specific society. Not much less according to the structures and interests of the concrete domination system. This will never be knowledge.

***
Excursus

Depression is a warning, and a wake-up call to our circumstances, an opportunity for introspection.

Since medicalization stole our “states of the soul” we can no longer enjoy the deep feeling of introspection of our sadness.

They have been socialized in a particular and laboratoryized way. We have stopped possessing our insides, we may never have had it, certainly not now. They have stolen the states of the soul and the enjoyment of chatting with them, contemplating their tones, colors, scales and landscapes.

If I were crazy, medicalized and sick, I could “understand” what is happening to me. There would be a socially validated reason for my feelings. My interior would become part of the common and institutional discourse and thus, I, like my surroundings, could find consolation.

My ravings would have a translation in a network of normality and pharmacology would be my silent social bed. The entire network of signs of medicine, psychiatry and psychology would cradle me to rejoin reality, even from its far edge.

Not being able to translate experiences into a discursive normality is living on a different plane, at the antipodes of the human sense, in an unwanted but unavoidable exile.

If he were mad, he could be exterminated in a gas chamber or lulled by a chemical cage of pharmacology according to the oscillations of power.

If I were crazy, I should relax my passions and exaltation, so as not to force the web of reality, it would be my main obligation. Returning as soon as possible from the trip out of the meaning and accepted symbols.

If I were crazy, I would accept that my ideas have no meaning in an outside, that there is no outside in my madness, that everything happens inside me. Interiority is the place of madness, without exteriority, nor relationship with the rest of human reality.

Madness as a social construction is an immense wall against immigrants who come from the chaos within us.

La psicología como dispositivo social

The logic of consumption II

Could a geography of consumption be made? But not one that matches cities and countries, continents, trade routes. If not one that maps more than physical places, conceptual places, their forces, gates, openings, flows and magnetism. The routes it creates and unfolds, the plains and moats it builds.

But such a static view would not reflect well how it works. We need a dynamic description, to make the consumption process independent in order to describe it in its deprivation / promise processes. Its static and dynamic places.

It would be necessary to have a Theory of consumption flows. Imagining consumption as the flow of a liquid with channels and gates. A hydraulics. Consumption maps would emerge from it and, from its operation, possibilities of movement. Permitted, prohibited movements and directed physical flows.

Obviously the hydraulics of consumption is a part of the more general of capital, and the other side of the hydraulics of production. Notwithstanding its logic, it needs particular aspects, it needs a comprehensive protection system for the merchandise, it needs a merchandise promotion system and finally it needs a system for relating merchandise to its consumer.

Vision of paradise

Marketing and product design have raised merchandise to a new dimension, color, lighting and variety emulate the primordial sensation of the vision of naked nature in all its brilliant variety (the psychedelic vision of perceptional liberation).

As in a journey in which the primordial reality and nature show all their naked and radiant colors. An encounter with proliferation and exuberance is the vision of the crowded shelves of products

A paradise of lighting emotions, of games of colors and shapes, accessible to the eye and to the hand, arranged in a linear arrangement that generates perspectives and angles. There is no place for distraction, for rest, for repose. Tidy according to reason, generous like mother nature.

The shelves surround us, there is no room for distraction, all the goods are there at our fingertips, there is nothing outside of them. In large supermarkets the ceiling is ungraspable, too high to stare at. Only by looking at the ground could you avoid the vision of paradise, but avoiding looking is a humanly reprehensible gesture and attitude. One would have to constantly be looking at hell in order not to see paradise.

In supermarkets the flow runs from the superfluous to the most necessary. The foods that have always been considered basic are in the most inaccessible and lateral places. The unnecessary is the central protagonist of the theatrical arrangement of the merchandise.

Fruits and vegetables are generally not packaged. Its own presence is paradisiacal, it does not need a marketing that transmutes it, as a wrapper turns a simple handful of dried corn into a desirable portion of heaven.

Out of the flows

A blow to indifference, a turn of the corner Why are beggars always lying on the ground, level with him? Why are they never perched on something, elevated, above passersby? What history does begging hide? Why is a prayerful, supplicating position, something that is below us?

It allows us a superior vision, a vision of the Lord. When someone begs standing up we almost think that he robs us. Animalize, crawl, reptilize, for them it is an obligation that helps us calm down, the tranquility that order provides.

Imagine some beggars on anything, like a raised platform. The impression that they would make on us would be terrifying (for us), their life and their meaning would also rise, they would be closer to the truth, closer to the divine, that is why we need them lying on the ground. Its ontological reality is less and it facilitates indifference.

The elimination of beggars, the first commandment of the logic of a consumer geography. Dirty cleaning task that the economic sphere has no qualms about delegating to the State. Task that he takes on with pleasure, “the cold-winded dog” is the necessary infrastructure for consumption.

Every social outcast is a warning note, a shouting sign of the limits of the social project itself. A descending ladder for those who do not comply with social logic. But at the same time they have the utility of showing the majority that there are still limits lower than themselves. That the price to pay would be very high.

Identifying “poverty” with the excluded or with an ethnic minority makes it easier to avoid the reproduction of demands for distribution by the population. Built in a symbolic space of contempt and misunderstanding, scarcity is preferred for all rather than benefiting “those parasites we hate.” As an ideology of control, it is impeccable.

La lógica del consumo II

Anachronism, one-dimensionality and techno-scientific rationality

The “anachronism” is our epochal hallmark. We cannot touch anything without leaving our mark on it. Like a suit of biological contamination: nothing penetrates it, and infects everything it touches.

Techno-scientific rationality has its hierarchies and modes of truth generation, circuits of circulation and recognition. A laboratory “truth” requires the participation of various experts, groups, specialized journals, etc. However, this was not always the case, in baroque science and at the dawn of the Scientific Revolution there was the isolated natural philosopher.

The truth-generating processes were hardly institutionalized, and the work was carried out with great independence and outside the official system. Sometimes with strong opposition. The forms of truth were held in modes of relation to still feudal environments. However, all the “fathers” of science had this profile: lonely aristocrats or artisans from an absolutist and semi-feudal world.

The demolition of the rationalities of the Old Regime had as a consequence the development of a new form of prevailing rationality. Techno-scientific rationality, more than a science project, I understand it as a global project of explanation and justification of reality as a whole.

Scientist thought has a narrative that erases origins and raises an “eternal present” turned into a comprehensive “grid” of all things. This presenteeism creates an explanatory circularity of ourselves (one-dimensionality). A current, factitious and historical state of affairs thus becomes a logical structure of reality, a-historical and with the apparent explanatory force to carry it as a norm for any historical period.

The “presumed” resolution of all logical, metaphysical or even religious problems, in our time extends towards ethics: “We have solved the ethical problems” and if it has not been done it is because “now” we know that it is not possible. The presumed techno-scientific ability to solve all problems becomes ideology, and as a ideology it gives us from the future the complete peace of mind of having achieved all the solutions, even though we do not have them today.

“Scientism” appeals to a closed universe in terms of possible explanations, these will always be of a certain type and also if they do not exist today, they will inevitably exist in the future. Although everything is not explained, it is only a matter of time, that is: with the security of having a “method” that will allow the abolition of darkness, the present, the past and the future lose their essence and are piled up. in a “total present.” Present that essentially expels any alternative option.

It is a form of truth that advances by accumulation or sometimes by substitution. It is parallel to the logic or form of rationality of industrial society itself. We are told that we accumulate “potentials” because the path of development is the right one, or in a publicity stunt, we have to “change” the paradigm in order to continue on the same path of progress.

In this sense, the periodic crises of the Ebola virus are significant. The protection protocol requires an “outside” radical and an “inside” radical. The necessary minute routine of dressing and undressing is a good metaphor for the minute scrutiny of techno-scientific reality. In addition to being a protocolized, meticulous and repeatable behavior. A method that will protect us from asking questions that can be infectious to the balance of the environment itself.

The countries of the so-called Third World continue to be external spheres, where rationality has not yet taken hold and from which all the ghosts of the past can emerge. The mass media create the borders, indeed, they generate the false feeling that there is a border, an exact limit that the “zombies” could be constantly exceeding. Therefore our “anachronism” is a relative of our traditional “xenophobism”. Although the concept of the Third World itself is already anachronistic, it has become a children’s parable to generate limits and terrors of all kinds.

The past for us presents a double problem, on the one hand we have to explain it from ourselves and our time, but we are also aware that our origin resides in it. How can a closed and absurd past be our father? Selecting isolated figures and decoupling their activities from their whole, like arrows pointing to us, or rather towards the selection created by ourselves.

The marking lines of the past towards us are discursive constructions of a demonstrative and teleological nature. The present was there, but it had not yet developed. Its purpose was latent and the task of History is to show its slow maturity.

Between the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th, philosophy experienced difficult moments, in which it seemed that the scientific project did not leave room for philosophical reflection. The rescue made by Nietzsche’s avant-gardes opened an opening in the wall, which is still open. To the roar of artillery, the stench of the trenches and the smell of mustard gas showed the not exceptional nature of the war in the humanist journey, but rather, its gruesome continuity.

Genealogist thinking has tried to use the synchronic accumulation of discourses to discover their formation and cause their deformation by opening the closed circle. All the philosophies that introduce history produce a certain indigestion to the truth. The truth is that it does not like its history and our techno-scientific world is not interested in its own, except for one that generates an unequivocal direction towards itself. It introduces uncertainty and relativity, as well as room for other forms of rationality.

Anacronismo, unidimensionalidad y racionalidad tecno-científica

The human masses

When were the human masses born? The concept of “human masses” seems to be linked to the sociology of the 19th century.

In the Middle Ages we find the plebs, the mass, who have been defeated by intellectuals since the 19th century, it seems that they refer to a group of undifferentiated human beings, whose attributes can be confused with one another. That is to say, it does not only mean low and vulgar people as it implies plebs, an older concept, it is a concept cooked in the kitchens of the nascent social sciences.

The mass is, therefore, a sociological conceptual scheme that, although it had not been fully developed, served to unify a large number of beings still devoid of (sociological) attributes and that intellectuals used in a derogatory way, but already participating in language and treading the field of the sciences of man.

The plebs were never studied, no conceptual approach to the lower classes was of interest, all knowledge focused on God or the nobility. Perhaps the birth of the masses is at that moment in which it began to be useful to study the common people. When it became studyable, it was transformed into a mass, that is to say, common people turned into an object of study by the human sciences. From there to consumer prospecting techniques there is only one straight line path.

The path could have been: Study of the populations by the enlightened absolute king → study of the human being as a factory producer → study of the human being as a consumer of products.

Las masas humanas

The gaze of the other

In solitude we do not exist as individuals, we exist as an extensive totality with all things. There is no exteriority, everything is a continuous interiority-exteriority. Thoughts, things, the entire existence has a continuity, in which the “I” is not known to be differentiated from the rest. In a way, it could be said that there is no such thing as “I”. Extensive fullness implies that the self is only the point of view from which reality looks at itself.

Being discovered by another conscience leaves our position of balance, that conscience outside us, deprives us of the extensiveness of our conscience with the world, and sends us directly to the discovery of our “I”.

Being discovered by another consciousness makes us “subjects”. It holds us to a part of us and opens an abyss with the world. But also, it generates the way in which we should look at the rest of things, it generates the other as an object. Interiority arises as a response to that rupture, it is a reaction to division.

Tying our interiority opens the field to an objectifiable spatial and temporal exteriority, to the world of reason. It creates the space for all the categories of language, metaphysics or science to appear.

Being perceived by another consciousness places us in another constitutive space, new rules emerge and everything changes around us.

***

Being for another gives us the measure of what we are for ourselves. In a temporary instantaneity we come out of solipsism and we have to indulge in a game of masks. Being looked at by another shows us with transparency the “brutal” equality of human beings, and the discomfort of carrying our “personality”, which tells us who we are compared to that other.

Our external reality, asleep in his presence, awakens in screams before the gaze of the other. Our body and the image we have of it is present. The eyes of others become the perfect reflection of ourselves?

What is hidden behind the other’s gaze? Should that look be a mirror, reflect everything that we “feel” in ourselves? “Mirror” is a keyword here, the other’s gaze is a mirror in which we reflect ourselves.

The gaze of the other can become a terrifying experience for those who are not willing to see their own image. But is this image that is reflected ours or the one that humanization sends us? The culture?

For a moment we stop living in ourselves and we only live inside who looks at us. We are alienated from ourselves, and as objects of another consciousness we are capable of feeling the objectification for another as ontological reality.

I do not know the implications of being objectified and its more than possible relationships with madness. But it does seem that the process of humanization and that of individualization seem to go hand in hand, and that the separation between subject and object has been a long and tortuous path that, nevertheless, remains in us as a painful separation or as the fall of the paradise.

***

Could objects in the world look at us as other human beings now look at us? In this situation, would it have been legitimate to call them objects?

How did the notions of distinction between human beings and animals, between inanimate and animate beings, between animals and plants appear?

Could animals and plants as well as the entire natural world become prying observers of an ancient humanity? What did that look make us?

Did an animistic age know of being observed by nature and discovering itself through it?

How could we make an archeology of previous forms of rationality in which neither individualization nor humanization were central elements?

Perhaps the age of reason is too human because it has blinded everything “alien”. It remains for us to explore the relationship between only being Interpellated by human beings and the objectification of the world.

In summary, we have developed:

• The rupture of the inner / outer continuous existence.
• The creation of the objectifiable, which has consequences for the creation of the self and for the conditions of knowledge as we know it.
• The creation of our human self, in front of and only in front of, other humans. This brings us to a time where “the human” becomes central, a special category, while the rest of the natural world is relegated to the world of objects. Objectuality created and generated by the division itself.

“La mirada del otro”

La humanidad ya ha sido destruida

La humanidad ha sido destruida varias veces, habitualmente consecuencia de su impiedad. Es decir, por haber abandonado los designios para los que fue creada.

Eso nos cuentan los mitos. Mas nuestro “mito”: la razón tecno científica y su progreso, parece destruirnos no por negar sus designios sino por cumplirlos. “Per se” sin finalidad aparente, sin aprender nada de ello.

La humanidad se ha hecho sujeto, y como un individuo-sujeto puede morir, perecer ella misma. ¿Quién puede ser garganta y voz de ese sujeto humanidad? ¿Quién habla por ella? ¿Cuál es su voz?

Cuando los dioses decidían destruir a los hombres elegían a alguien que sería el último de esta humanidad y el primero de la siguiente ¿Dónde está esa elegida humanidad que continuará nuestros pasos?

Cuando Roma estuvo agobiada por los bárbaros y temía por su seguridad, los cristianos culparon a los paganos por sus pecados y éstos a los cristianos por haber minado la moral marcial de Roma.

Nuestra narrativa de humanidad moderna nos describe en un proceso de cambio (evolución-progreso), donde el dominio de lo externo es celebrado en cada “paso” y se convierte a la vez en la semilla, ya crecida, de nuestra propia destrucción.

El mito progreso, aparece como una contradicción en sí mismo. Si un dios nos hubiese obligado a “progresar” del modo que hemos hecho, podríamos ahora culparlo por ello, pero nuestro mito nos dice que nació de nosotros mismos, y que somos los únicos culpables, los únicos causantes…

El dios terrible que nos lleva a la destrucción está dentro de nosotros, de nuestra naturaleza, después de todo es normal pensar así ¿acaso no hemos cambiado a Dios por la naturaleza?

Si el progreso es también un mito debe poseer su Hybris, su propia desmesura, sería esa desmesura la que debe ser castigada. Pero el progreso no tiene “desmesura” solo tiene avance o retroceso. No conoce límite alguno.