Let’s save our Humanity

 

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a man in Rio living in poverty

Being human, is being physically a man or a woman, no matter the height, the weight or the color. Furthermore, it is also having humanity, which is kindness from a man to another man, considering every man or women equally, regarding to any aspect, if he stands, if he’s been educated, if he has an opinion, if he breathes. But we live in a so controverted world that our humanity is being attacked and is in jeopardize. The factors of us losing our humanity might stand in different aspect of our society that men were not prepared for, the first aspect is violence in society, there has never been a year of peace all around the earth and there are reasons for it. Then, as we are getting involved deeper and deeper in technology in our modern world, and as we are going away from nature we leave our natural habitat, and might lose part of what we are. But how is this provoked?

 

Firstly, have you ever thought about how would be your life without this laptop or computer on which you are about to read this blog? It won’t have been the same, what do you think you would have done instead of being behind it, and reading this? Did you thought about going out taking a deep breath in the countryside walking along a river or between trees of a massive forest realizing what really matters or where do we come from? Aren’t these lines about nature making you feeling better and relaxed? Today, in France more and more workers are practicing sport, about 5% more this year according to the INSEP, it is a good thing, it disconnects them from their everyday life and technologized one. But, have they ever thought that if they need sport is because their body needs to rest from this technology that surrounds us? People need to feel themselves experiencing, on the net we don’t live and we don’t experience. Moreover, if people try to get a signal in the brain of someone in front his laptop they won’t get anything because this person is a spectator not a protagonist of what she lives, the only thing that thrives us is to experience with our body. Reading makes us imagining things, watching a video makes us being vegetables.

Years after years, we have disconnected ourselves from the land in gathering in big cities trying to reach the sky, which seems no more to be our only limit, to get away from the earth and the water from where we really come. But also in getting on our laptops instead of going out to see the world. We are depriving ourselves of our humanity, in losing our feelings and connection with our origins.

Men, as people like to remind themselves that they are “intelligent” but according to Ashley Montaigu, human are confused about what they are really supposed to do, what should really be their aim, we are supposed to live and our intelligence is supposed to help us to invent and to innovate, but this only led us to let machines doing what we were supposed to do, and created a terrible mess. All of this explains why we are destructing our Earth, on which everything is founded, without asking the right questions at the right moment. The further we go in technology, the more we destroy the Earth and the more cut ourselves from it and our humanity. To get out of this today, would be a very big challenge because industries and the market are the ones who decides of the innovations and make profit of it, asking it to just innovate for the good without the assurance of profit might be nearly impossible, but engineers have to be aware of this fact to change things.  Furthermore, our loose of humanity is described in how violent are the conflict today and how they are created.

 

As are showing the Second World War and the conflict with ISIS today there is an escalation of violence and cruelty in our society. And according to the new articles in “Le Monde” about the torture possibly made by the Americans in Iraq, or what history tells us about the horrors during the Second World War, people because they aim to survive are ready to forget their humanity, because of their fear of death they are ready to be crueler than their enemy. However, this violence doesn’t exist in our gene and isn’t only spread by our society, with a market based on a selfish consummation of products. It is also a problem of education, still today we raise our children following a German model build a century ago, that considers that when the child express his first will that the parents are not eager to satisfy, they should show they won’t and can at most beat him aiming to have a total obedience in the future, however this led to child abuse. But Alice Miller demonstrated that this violence to obtain obedience was memorized by the body and if this fear and this rage felt during being beaten is interiorized by the body isn’t intellectualized it can in the future be expressed in another way by the child and this way is to spread violence in society. This violence can be from any form: racism, sexual abuse, and this is maybe the reason why so many people followed Hitler. Here we are not saying all German citizens who followed Hitler were child abused but that they all had fear and rage and that this model of education provokes this type of feelings inherently in the body.

And because of how our body memorize this, people suffering from this trauma will maybe act “unconsciously” beating their children without really wanting it but more as it was a reflex, transmitting their suffering.

Because, this pedagogy called by A. Miller “the poisonous pedagogy”, is creating a so deep trauma people should change their way to educate and the biggest challenge stands in accepting every side of our child, no matter if we like them or not. Accepting these sides, is the first step to truly love our children, saving them from this trauma is saving the humanity of the future generation. Here, we’re not talking of stop any violence on children but to find another way to find obedience, which could from recognition more than fear.

Anyway, other factors can turn our minds upside down and create fear that surrounds our humanity.

 

Our world faces a big economic crisis which started in 2008, and because of the instability it created people are afraid for themselves and forget about the others. People fear to be jobless, to run out of money, they fear the other, and the ones who are different. Because they had to find an excuse to their situation, some of them thought other were responsible and this part of why there is racism, and the fast growth of it in France as shows the first win of ‘le Front National” at an election last year. However, racism creates separation which creates communitarianism, even sexism can be created by fear of losing job or things like that. It is fear that transforms differences from strength to weakness and danger.

 

To conclude, it is fear and confusion about our future that deprives us from our humanity and makes us lose our humanity. To speak simply, relearning how to be human means that we have to go back where we come from, we have to seek for our origins and our real needs, making abstraction of what our society wants to sell us. Moreover, for centuries people are following a bad way to educate their children that provoke traumas and can corrupt their humanity right during their young childhood. But there has always been fear in society and there will always be, the only thing we can do is trying to get rid of it.

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policemen of Rio in front of a painting talking about love

Where are men and women in our Occidental society?

 

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Women ofen have the same right to support their country.

Scientifically speaking men and women are different, they don’t share the same phys
iological bodies, the same hormones, and the same physical abilities. These differences have been translated naturally in our society no matter the period, from the Antiquity till today men and women have never shared the same roles in society. Today, women are claiming the equality between the genders feeling they are being disrespected or forgotten by our society. Nevertheless, people are less aware of the fact that this change can come as much from men than from women actions, because men are also aspiring to enlarge their role in different domains such as the paternity, because today their role in the families is more and more troubled. Thus, many progress have been made in our society but the roles of men and women are still assimilated to bias that need to be broken down. The question people should ask to themselves is, what could we change to achieve a greater equality? This question leads to state the place of men and women in our society through history and also today in the idea to better understand the needs and the stakes of our society.

 

During the Medieval-Ages and the Antiquity men and women didn’t share the same roles at home or in public life. At this time the religion occupied a great place in people’s life and the roles of men and women were clearly defined. According to Didier Lett and his book “Homme et Femme au Moyen-Age”, women were excluded from the priesthood and it is still like this today. Their exclusion was very strict and in 1290 a man was verifying the male attributes of the pope before his election. But some women in very special occasion had some power in the priesthood, in Fontevraud a woman was made abbess from a male monastery, but we still don’t know if it was an humiliation or because of her social rank. Even though they were excluded from the clergy life women had a role in society.

At work, men and women had defined jobs because of their gender women were supposed to take care of the milk, the wool and to do the household while men were working in the fields and were sometimes helped by women. Even if they had a job women were not considered equal to men when they were working, often when they were helping working on the fields with their children they worked for free, they didn’t get a salary. Because of that a group of Anglo-Saxon historian women specialized in women anthropology thought that the medieval society was a 2 spheres system, with on the one hand men taking care of the public life of the family, of the state’s affairs, and the agriculture. And on the other hand, the women were taking care of the household, the family and were supposed to represent  nature at home.

However, even though they had a role and a work women were also banned from the political life, in Greece, citizens were only men born from a father already citizen of the city, women were considered equal to slaves, strangers and children. However, in Europe in 1324 it was also forbidden to women to come into the political building excepted if they were supposed to deliver a testimony or if they were being trialed. Their exclusion was justified by Innocent the Third because of the of their gender considered as weak. After that, Balde in 1400 said that women could command a county if there were no men to do this. Even queens were excluded from power, however they were right in the heart of the nation. However, some women had power such as the several regent queens but they were often contested and their authority was not often well accepted by their ministers.

Finally, at home women were also submissive to their husband, such as the servant to the king because the husband was in the house what the king was to the country, he was the embodiment of God. But at home roles of men and women were also interchangeable and men were often taking care of the sick and injured children. Moreover, at this time sexuality was not seen in the same way we see it today, it was considered as “something that someone does to someone else” which is very different from how we see it today, and it shows that in this domain the equality has made some great progress. Still talking about sexuality, adultery were seen as feminine crimes “sexual act accomplished with another man than the husband with consent” but was considered as a lot worse when it was made by men because the society had higher moral expectations for them, on contrary today people think that adultery are made by men but according to the stats of “ELLE” 2/3 women had an adulterous relation versus 1/2 of men. Isn’t it a surprise?

 

As women are asking for rights and taking some other revenge, today their role and the roles of men are also changing. Today, 40% of women have to face a change in their professional activity when they have a baby versus only 6% of men. But, men don’t become father as women become mothers. And their role has been modified a lot in the 50’s and the 70’s because men and women were being more equal, as we have moved from the role of the pater familias, who was more the husband from the woman then the father of the children, to the “Christian father” who is the biological father but not the spiritual one because it had to be God , now it is once again different, we are able to see that men are the voice while women are the body, it is the role the child gives the mother because of the conception. Because of this the role of the father most of the time depends on the role the mother is ready to give him and we can quote from Simone Korff Sauss in her book “Être père aujourd’hui un modèle à réinventer”, “if the mother is the present at the time the father is a journey over the time”.

Socialy speaking, virility is being modified, according to Serge Hefez because the young men are now able to work in cosmetics and other domain that were reserved to women years ago, but men are not the only gender to discover the traditional works of the other genders women also. However, this phenomenon is going slow because of the coeducation that is reinforcing the genders preconceived notions about work and women are still not having as much prestigious job as men do. Even though in 2000, 67.5% of women had their baccalaureate versus 55.5% of men. Thus, women are also less paid than men and are often forced to not work at full time, because their superior are always taking account that a women is a future mother and that she might have to take a maternity break.

Today, people are having a lot of socializing activities, and one of the most important is sport for men but also for women, nevertheless during the twentieth century women didn’t had access to sport because the coaches weren’t wanting to train them and used the excuse of the difference in the male and feminine physiology. For example, women were enabled to practice pole vault only in 1987 because it was supposed to hurt their organes. Some sports were considered as masculine because they were a place to set a model of virility during economic and social changing period. And at this time women didn’t had access to sport and when they had they had to find others like dance. Moreover, during the ninetieth and the twentieth centuries sports were a way to express virility at a time when fights on the street were starting to be punished by law.

Furthermore, women are not present in the sport’s media according to 2006 stats, 1000 H of masculine sports are on television versus 521 H of mixed gender sports, but only for example 20 H of gymnastic which one of the most popular sport in the world. Even “L’Equipe Magazine” published only 16% of articles about sportswomen. This shows that people don’t take sport for women as seriously as we do for men. Finally, men and women don’t have the same roles but both want things to change, men want to fix their role in their families while women would like to conquer society and markets.

 

To conclude, the role of men and women has changed a lot since the Antiquity in Europe and their role is no more the same at home, in social life or at work anymore but their roles are still not equal, furthermore their equality depends on them. At home women are the ones who have to keys about the relation of the father with its children although at work men still have the powerful jobs and can give their chance to women in giving them some responsibilities that they might expect, not making their working hours shorter only because they are women. Thus, women can also try to cope with the bias during their studies to reach what they dreamt about when they were children. And people who have power can redistribute the chance. Than politics, or people by strikes can also change the way of schools to teach in stopping coeducated classes because it is what stops women and it would at the end create more skilled workers. However, this essay is only about our Occidental society, but everyone knows that all around the world these roles are very different and are not changing at  the same rhythm.

The « Numerical Revolution, » a silent earthquake

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This is a picture of people taking a photo of people photographing an athlete with her medal instead of admiring her.

The « Numerical Revolution » is the upheaval of our societies with the comming of internet, the computers. Moerover because of this the communication have exploded and there is a way larger idea circulation than before.

When I was younger I used to go shopping with my mother to buy clothes and shoes; however, now we stay at home on her I-pad as I try to find a new pair of shoes. In the meantime, my father is often reading an E-book that he bought on his computer, while sitting at home, on the. Furthermore, today people do not need to go out to get what they need. They hardly talk face to face. Instead they use their phone to communicate. What is technology doing to us? What is happening to our knowledge? How do we deal with it? In front of such innovations as the numerical one, people usually have two types of reactions, some are feeling they face the devil and other think it is only our future, but what numerical really changes in our lives? How can people transform this change in strength? Technology seems unstoppable. According to the INSEE (National Institute of Economical Stats and Studies) in 2007, 32% of the French population had already bought something on the internet, but this number is increasing quickly. In 2012, it was no longer 32% of the population, but 59% of the French population who had bought something on the internet.

With the burst of technology, people are reacting and behaving in different ways. Some are crazy about it, happy to have what they call the “future” in their hands, and we can see this in many advertisements of different devices when people are having a great smile testing new things. Other people view it as the devil avoiding using it and thinking horrible things will happen because of it. They are not completely wrong. In 1980, a French philosopher said that each innovation was having worse consequences than good effects and that each innovation to solve these consequences were going to have even worse consequences than the one before. This is seen in the creation of cars. We can go faster and we can go farther, however we are polluting our earth and killing her resources. Now we can go faster to another place but we are also polluting the earth faster and drying her resources, then. To help try to solve this problem, people created electric cars, but what are we supposed to do with the old batteries. Are we able to recycle them? No.  Moreover, to explain this statement we can quote the Atlantic Monthly of 2008 “science moves faster than moral understanding. However, today humanity is at a point where numerical is everywhere in our cars, in our classes and in our hands. Furthermore, numerical devices have a very large impact on our society.

Today, people talk about “ the Numerical Revolution ” which surprisingly began in the late 1950’s with the very fast spread of the digital devices. Otherwise, this revolution has a massive impact on our knowledge. In fact, today people have anything they want to know at their fingertips because, “ google knows everything .” This statement scares me because google knows but what about us? Do we still know anything? As it is said in “Terminal” a newspaper about science, google enables us to inform ourselves without anyone to teach us, but informing is not learning. Moreover, google is also a danger for people’s health because of the billions of answers google can give us. It can lead some people to feel vulnerable and they may face depression. Furthermore, google is always needing new answers. According to Le roman de Flaubert, people now need to copy everything “ no reflexion, we just copy, the page needs to get filled, the monument needs to be completed ”. The internet is in itself a new place of knowledge but a much more complicated one to control because of how fast and accessible it is. In other words, it can seem uncontrollable. Otherwise, this access to knowledge is not a great thing because people do not really know how to relay this knowledge to themselves. And in fact, it is not like in class or in a museum… on the internet, there is nobody to tell them how to understand what they read. Furthermore, we could also agree with Louise Merzeau who says that “we need to relearn how to learn” and, that is why schools had to adapt. Schools were still trying to teach as if people  did not have the knowledge, and professors should have used it as a strength for their classes. Now, people  can search things easily if they are told how to do it. They have everything at their fingertips, they just need to appropriate(find a different word) it to themselves. According to Bruno Devauchelle, “there are many exact answers but only one completely true” and it is because we do not all fully know how all these “things” are working that we can have a feeling of freedom which can be an illusion.

Behind technology, there is a big shadow, something we could call the background of the internet. More precisely, this shadow stands for the e-identity which is our net-identity, that we all have and create unconsciously when we surf on the net; however, we are not always aware about this. This identity is made of every profile and comment anyone can do make on any social network, but it is also well defined by your mail address or where you write it, to make it simple on any site you subscribe with it there is a trace that you came there. This also called in « Terminal », The spying of the citizens, moreover with it comes the rule of the network which tells first that anything you put on the net is persistent and that anyone data can be scribed, Data can also be copied and finally people must be aware of the fact that there is always a way for people to know what you are doing or writing. Moreover, because some people are more aware than us about how this E-identity works, the threat of cyber-intimidation is greater. In order to make it simple, we feel more free but we are not. For some of us it is not anymore a problem of freedom.

In fact, It appears that people with who are handicap are do not have access to the “Numerical Revolution.” According to Terminal, technologie de l’information, culture et société, some people are taking part to an association in Ile et Vilaine for people who are handicap.  Adapei 35  have shown that people who are handicap are excluded, and only 5% of them had a computer and 6% had regular activity with it; nearly 34% of the patients said that they were interested and needed to know how to use a computer or have one.  Furthermore, these disabled people, who already had difficulties to be integrated in this society, have a new challenge, the numerical integration. This challenge will take place till they do not know how to use it or they do not have access to it. They are put to the side of the society and excluded.

To sum up, the “Numerical Revolution” could have positive effects if people are aware of how the internet works, and all the devices of its devices. For the moment, the good effects it makes us feel closer to an illusion than anything else. People are not really able to appropriate it to them and their freedom is endangered. However, more than an illusion they also exclude the disables persons and everybody should be aware of that in the idea to change this and help them to get integrated the society; because once they will know how to use a computer they will have no difference with us because we are all the same behind a screen. Nevertheless, the illusion of freedom is also an illusion of proximity with our peers and friends. Furthermore, it is well explained in these two videos that anyone should watch and try to apply the lesson taught in it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z7dLU6fk9QY

Ronan

The impact of religion on society.

A major question in our today’s world.

img_2389This subject is far to wide to be treated only by a man like me, but because I am note very aware about the impact of any religion on any society I decided to think about it widely.

   A year ago I discovered an essay written as if it was a novel and it was entitled « Les animaux dénaturés » of Vercors in which the author explain that humans are considered as humans as soon as they trust in superior figures, such as Gods or « gris-gris » for people to feel lucky or to avoid danger , and trusting in something that rules the world, something which is above men and for him it was comming before burrying the deads, he was considering the act of having « gris-gris » as the beginning of religion. That’s why we can say that religion has always had an impact on humans and society, because human’s behavior was guided by their faith, always trying not to disappoint their superior figures. This impact was limited to some geographical areas at the beginning of civilisation because there were a lot of religions with many different Gods, those religions were polytheists or monotheists and people were not sharing it with others because it was hard to travel… We may think that a « country » at this period is still not related to only one religion and that’s why the impact of the religion was relative in a country. But today it is very different and the impact of those religions on our society is very important. And we may Wonder, what impact those religion have on our society today? Firstly this impact exists because of the fact that there are nowadays only five major religion, Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, the Jewish religion, and today the Hindi  because they are only five their impact is far more important and has worldconsequences ! But I think that those two aspect are not supposed to be separated, moreover you will see that in most of my arguments they are linked and I will only have one big thought today.

 

 To begin with, we will consider the fact that there are five major religion, furthermore it implies that more people are agreeing with them and that’s why through history some countries adopted one of them, and this religion became the official one of a country like in France (as it was in 481) since Clovis the country became a monarchy of divin rights because as the story tells us God gave him the force he needed to win a battle against a crowd of ennemies who were surrounding him, furthermore to thank God he was beeing baptized and made the Christianity the official religion of the Frank Kingdom. But this country was not an exception every country or Empire or Federation or whatever in this old Europe had its official religion at this time.

    Then because countries had an official religion they had to follow the ideology of the Pope or the advice of the most important priest, figure of the religion on our Earth, and this is a first point in the importance of the impact of those religion. Because it implies that religions had the whole power they were ruling the world for the better and the worst, because the religion were applying their ideology to all countries. This can be seen like countries were states of a religion, it reminds a little bit about Huntington’s theorie, who was a professor in political sciences in the United States of America, moreover he thought about the Civilisation Shock which determined areas around where were localised the religion thinking they were not compatible and their meeting couldn’t bring peace but was supposed to create wars.  

    But religion are basically peacefull in their ideology but they are often misundertsood by men, and that’s how religion war are happenning in our society, such as today with ISIS. This idea puts in light that there are different levels to understand a religion, but furthermore these levels of understanding have really different impact on society form the most violent to the most peaceful.

   Secondly, today religion can’t be seen as linked to a country even if it can be the official one because we can find community of any religion anywhere on the earth. It means that people from any religion spread their faith everywhere fleeing from a war or only by changing country creating some diaspora while leaving the original region of their religion, and in doing so, spreading their religion somewhere else, that makes their religion having more power, while concerning wider areas.  

Sadly being part of a religion has also been a reason to die during the Second World War, as the nazis were persecuting the jues and this should be considered as an impact because if those people who died didn’t had faith in their religion they wouldn’t have died moreover it is the impact of the juish diaspora going to Europe, and in spreading their religion while immigrating to find a better place to live they put their lives in danger.

    Even if they are misunderstood religions are a way of living to go to heaven since they exists ans still today, thus many philosophers as Freud or Marx think that it is the way people have found not to be affraid of death because quoting « religion is the opium of people », it is supposed to be only a moment before a better life thus  people must follow a certain behaviour considered as the right one to be « good » and to be able to prentend to go to heaven, maybe people in our society are just working hard and struggling whishing for a better futur or should we say after. By this we understand that religion do not have a limited impact but that  they determine the entire life of people in their command.

     As we have seen that religion has a worldwide impact we should consider in what topic it remains. Then, we can see that repetidly in history religion has an impact on war, and on so on world relation between states, sometimes creating war such as in Jerusalem ,although sometimes providing peace such as in Europe when the Pope asked for the end of war during the Medieval Ages.

   Then as we said before it also concerns the daily routine as people can have some ritual to accomplish such as going to the church or the mosquee or just praying in a room several times a day.

  

  In a nutshell, the impact of religion on society exists since the firsts people considered as human are on the Earth and the impact of religion is more and more massiv through the years because they are having more power while concerning more and more people. Thus the impact of religion on society isn’t as easy to see as it was before but it is not less important because in all those thoughts we understood that it is planning the whole existence of people from their education to their death through their behaviour and their living.

   As a conclusion, I would like to think about what  one of my professor, Mr Reed Meister, taught us this year, for him religion are understood and applied at different level by people and this can be represented by a pyramid. Furthermore, people who are practising at the lowest level of understanding (bottom of the pyramid) are just fundamentalists, they apply religion without understanding the real meaning  of it and think that people who have an other religion are wrong. Thus they can also be in conflict with people from their own religion who are practising to a higher level, and this way to understand religion is the one which creates Religious Wars and so has the worst impact on societies. At this level people can’t product peace. Otherwise, as you are being at a higher level of the pyramid you are supposed to integrate different values such as morality, ethics  and ideals. Moreover, by doing so the consequences of your level of pratice are being less violent and instead of provoquing Religious Wars it can finally create Religious debates which are at the beginning of spreading peace and are unabling people to share their culture with people from other religion. Finally, at the top of the pyramid there is the mystic, it is a person who feels everything, who is able to make interdisciplinary reflection between religions, things, people, these persons are the one who fully understand things, and from these persons there can just emerge peace, ethic and moral. Finally, this graph can explain why is the impact of religion on society so important and sadly to often bad…

 

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Ronan