The problem is that industrial culture is based on a mode of mimesis that simulates itself over and over again. In our emerging global society, the human being stands in the middle of a “fun zone” with walls of mirrors, where one's reflection is all-too- human. Something is behind these human images-a psychology that supports a mimesis that fails to recognize its origin, and, therefore, it downplays the sensuous life.
Computers, video, radio, printing presses, synthesizers, fax machines, tape recorders, photocopiers – these things make good toys, but terrible addictions.
Finally we realize we cannot “reach out & touch someone” who is not present in the flesh. These media may be useful to our art – but they must not possess us, nor must they stand between, mediate, or separate us from our animal/animate selves. We want to control our media, not be controlled by them. And we should like to remember a certain psychic martial art which stresses the realization that the body itself is the least mediated of all media.
For art, the intervention of Capital always signals a further degree of mediation. To say that art is commodified is to say that a mediation, or standing-inbetween, has occurred, & that this betweenness amounts to a split, & that this split amounts to “alienation.”
quote, rubem alves, confessions: on theology and life
So what? Is there any way out of this situation? One thing I know for sure. In the business of living, one must not live by certainties —but by visions, risks, and passion. Maybe this is what Paul had in mind, when he said that we are saved by hope, i.e., by that which we do not see. The tragedy of our decadent civilization, it seems to me, is due to its fear of losing itself. This is the sin of both nations and individuals. It is tragic to see the sin of nations —their arrogance of power— being reenacted in the sphere of individuals, the absolutization of one’s own experience. And when we are entrapped in our heart which is bent upon itself, can we have any hope of rebirth and new life?
The voyage into distant worlds of the imaginary truly conducts a dynamic psyche only if it takes the shape of a voyage into the land of the infinite. In the realm of imagination, every immanence takes on a transcendence.