the best version of yourself

February 7, 2010 Leave a comment

drawing-leopard-dinisguarda

trust me you are what you think about it, and stop for a while, what is the best version of yourself? how can you bounce back from some kind of your own poison? is there any scientifical or technologically blueprint with transformative powers…?
how can one defeat the inner dark side? – “people and things do not upset us, rather we upset ourselves by believing that they can upset us.” albert ellis                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     still not always thoughts have the capacity to create a world of its own, and it is necessary a prescription for contented behavior, it is important to avoid the mass extinction of hope (inside the machine of mind)… there is a liquid leap of suggestion… look for the right and sound deoxyribose nucleic acid, the chemical reaction that transforms each one of us… in the short attention span of an amnesia of 400 millions years life
….
sometimes one lives inside a black hole (and nothing is pure thought), and although, as abraham lincoln put it, “people are about as happy as they make up their mind to be.”
it is quite complex the wandering of nuances, and most of the time one sees only the things one fears… in a deep global internal, external navigation; a cold water becoming ice and hitting you… there are ghosts you have to pursue; every obstacle can become an opportunity (but also a failure)
….
so the challenge is to draw the things you really want and need in your inner blackboard (and make sure you remember to read it at least once a day!)… and please do always whatever you are terrified fear to do (but do it fast). and go confidently in the direction of your own… think for a while do you live the life the way you’ve always wanted?

a tragic view of mankind and my own mankind

December 6, 2009 Leave a comment

dark tragic mountain

In the developing inner thougts and contradiction one lives there is a mythic fight between a balanced and a tragic vision of humankind. The wandering for a seriousness and dignity that are the basis of the tragic involves someone, normally a great person of virtue who experiences a reversal of fortune. And this tragic view results in the concept of Tragedy, a catharsis or can we call it now an emotional (dis)orders or cleansing, healing or excape from the world, the reality through the experience of these emotions in response to the suffering of the characters in one own drama, stage of life.

Independently of what each one believes, mankind lives an existence of inherent limitations and flawns and this concept of tragic and non tragic, mostly present in the western world, in essence is based in the fact of the fear of being able to reach or not the principles of inner peace and balance. These limitations, fears based on past experiences, on the weight of judgement and conflict are ultimately the drivers of the tragic.

That makes one think what might be the best formula to understand that if one wants to get some kind of inner peace it requires an acknowledgment of the necessity of transformation and an emotional intelligence for going in the way of connectedness with the environment around you more than to create any kind of conflict with it.

The best way to do that implies that each person urge its acts towards a point where any individual and collective action derrives from an energy that has the power to transform and balance the wired complexity of the mind versus the instinct and animality of the body in a systemactic controlled ability to think and act spontaneously rather than on prejudice towards the affects of fortune.

There is a fragile line between raw emotional intelligence and emotional competency. One kind of plays with an invisible fire, where the rules are rewritten by forces of education, tradition and vulnerability inside the wires of the brain cells, mirror neuron mind and its neurosciencefactors. What can one believe in the end is that we are in a body with limitation and in a mind with huge capacities but with powerful black holes. And one can think about working with the flow of the river of the snap social decisions and the personal myths and fictions one constructs through the elements of culture, education and each own physical bodies.

There are no official intellectual definitive “answers” and I think that no one in his own mind might be actually confident that he knows anything with certainty. Everyone tries to get their own how-to-reach-happiness-in-a-number-of-steps in a kind of post-structuralism simplistic vision of the utopian vision, associated with Thomas More, Rousseau, Godwin, Condorcet, Thomas Paine… Still the truth is that we are a “lost” species in a world / universe that no one of us can completly understand.

Mankind is indeed a species of chaos and instinct, with a sense of understanding both the move another person is about to make and their feelings, and instantaneously preparation to imitate that movement and feel it. Daniel Goleman, in his books Emotional Intelligence and afterwards Social Intelligence, the New Science of Human Relationships mentions that as a part of “social brain”, a neural circuitry operates while each of us interacts something which explores how emotions are manages in the brain.

But the old question that is the matrix for the tragic (that the Greek literature synthetise in its biggest three writers singers of the tragedy: Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides) or non tragic view of the mankind is what are the ingredients of life success. This is the electric question that everyone at a certain moment has to answer.  How can we synthesize the broad range of topics that keep us focus and balanced? And this questions one needs to do it wether if one looks deep in the broad scientific findings, or wether one tries to draw together the separate strands of research between theory and practice?

And the challange is how to conduct a way through the believe and not believe. How to drive to a personal transformation that gets a balance between the tragic of mankind (its memory, layers of complexity and negative fears)  and my own mankind, the way I live with myself each day. This is the biggest challence for anyone of us to be willingness to fly beyond the scarcity of consciousness and prejudice. And of course the challenge that can makes us believe and get out of that state of tragic export – how to get absence and live out of judgment and negativity.

e-formula: no matter how bad a heart is broken the wheel of the world won’t stop for that grief

December 6, 2009 Leave a comment

I believe in formulas for eternity made with simple samples of time,
day by day, made with focus on what is really important
(mainly when one is afraid).

i believe that it isn’t always enough to be
forgiven by others. i believe that most of the times the more important is that one
has to learn to forgive ourselves,
getting read of ourselves,
washing faces with yesterday and
tomorrow
rain

waters.

I believe mainly
that i am responsible for being under the light of everything i do,

(even when most of the times i do not know what i am doing
and the sky is falling on
the radar of conscience).

no matter how i feel the only thing is that i will never be afraid of trying anything
because of whatever the others say or think or my misconceptions might tell me.

I believe
in dreams and ambitions but in the end i believe in people
(and the most difficult is to live with other people, because we create fictions
and when we don´t reach the utopia of those fictions we just run away
(we think it is easier)
,

but the bigger prove of love it is not to give the other face (only)
but to be there when it is hurts the distopia,
it is to inspire

mainly when you don’t get it and there is too much smoke
and your mind is burning

most of the time when I am not expecting,
i am looking for something and I get another
and things fallen from its spaces

leaves getting out from very old trees
(and still we are always reborning)

I believe
that no matter how bad a heart is broken
the wheel of the world won’t stop for that grief.

even when you discover a region of spaces in which
all the gravity well is so deep that even gravitational time dilation halts time

in fact emotions and feeling form completely event horizons in us,

(so i am not afraid
even of that black hole that reaches the senses and absorbs all the light that hits it,
reflecting nothing),

and sometimes one can reach a one-way surface into which objects can fall,
but i believe that in the end there is always some kind of redemption

i believe that when one finds someone that touches him deep
one should not give up of that person if that person is
honest as the morning wind

(and yes i know that I got too close to u)

unpredictability and disambiguation

April 13, 2009 Leave a comment

sunlight mysteries

the shipwrecked cruise ship listing dangerously after it
struck ice in antarctic waters
,

the 67-million-year-old dinosaur mummy unveiled…
(the not well defined murmur of the memory of the
fundamental structure of the universe
,

and its capriciousness);


do you know how to complete the task of the beginning of the
the temperature of times?

do you know the many possible translations?
do you know how to pick the one with minimum semantic distance?

(a great smile after knowing someone
that makes me feel very well)

? what is the real important instruction to live with
or for completing a task

?
have you realise that you are being guided by
a sudden immersion in unpredictable impulses

love is much more than qualitative or quantitative (?)
predictable (?)

and evolves like a comet in a rate of divergence

there exists no general rule to predict the behavior of
(emotions)

in the line of evolution
and the approach for equilibrium of a butterfly,

there exists no general rule to predict the behavior of
the chaotic behaviour in nature,
the dynamics of the satellites in the solar systems,
the time evolution of the magnetic field of celestial bodies

and i want your clarification

remove me from you words of ambiguity
!
you are my biggest chemical reaction
the reason for my chaotic behaviour
,

the dynamic of the simplicity and complexity of everything i
am afraid of

you are my exponential growth of
perturbations
.

the aura of the xxth century

April 11, 2009 Leave a comment

metro train lisbon

with consumer confidence at a record low and house prices climbing and falling
the ticket anesthetics of a poker-faced boredom or
the money markets feeling bull and bear anxiety
– all the sensori-emotional values of car accidents, garbage bins and iron skeletons…
the tragic beauty of the photography
of marylin monroe laying naked in her bed after suicide,
all models are wrong, but some are useful.” George Box

it is the winter season, the orbits in this skin river with a remarkable shift
in the way that vast numb numbers live,
the result of technological, medical, social, ideological, and political innovation
– disneyland of beam pervaded,
(the maiden in her chamber just don´t pray for us anymore)
… and one can see the gangster in chicago or in sicilia,
the jurisdiction of the sodium wars,
plugging the cold extinction and
fragile mrs kennedy polished after jfk’ s assassination,

or the progress of statistics turning wreckage,
besides pandemonium and viral broken collateral message
.

duchamp enigma haunts the replication of the machines – he
who renounced art to play chess instead,
(maybe the randomness of the black swans that were discovered in australia.
or the sight of just one black swan that detonated the theory)
the eternal sphinx looks perfectly in the night exposure,

it is hard to tell whether i am in a voyeuristic
amnesia travel through the blood-struck surface
or simply lost in a narcissist unconsciousness of massive amounts of data and
applied mathematics
that replace every other tool that might be brought to bear
;

no one has an explanation, our loving sarcasmus,
own theory of relativity backward-turning
or your quantum physics of inhibition,
you drastically changed the world-view, causing me to realize that the universe
in my hands is by far complexer that all cardiac knowledge,
and thus dashing all the hopes, the serial scientific understanding,
(nothing remains hollow in the derogation of destiny)


beauty is crystallized in the automatic make up of the splash of time
open like a flood
in the genealogy of a ghost three with hundreds of years,
discovering gene-protein interactions
and other aspects of epigenetics challenging the view of
DNA as destiny and even introducing evidence that
environment can influence inheritable traits,

thus the eternal fear is still there in the corner of the thoroughly absorbing viewing,
in this is this “just now” bottom of the overspilled,
the death of a flush counter in the life of a tulip,
the death of formed billing belief
…everything once considered a genetic impossibility

most of us are just reviving something that is ancient,
but still transcending the birth of the

new projected ironic light
beating in the sand and

skeptical pandora made enlightened argumentum
in this whole of organic and mechanical technology
(the more we learn about biology,
the further we find ourselves confused from models that can explain it)
the scrupulous care of Stanley Kubrick spectrum
and charlie chaplin playing the outcast

this late cult of the sunflower
:: ashes and wind shadows drizzle and dis…satisfied

Have you noticed that Portugal is not the best kept secret in Europe?

April 11, 2009 Leave a comment

During Salazar’s dictatorship, Portugal was “sold” abroad, in a mythical tourist campaign, as the best kept secret in Europe. It is ironic to reconsider this image of our country, in the present, troubled days.
I recently saw on CNN a publicity spot for New York’s Wall Street Journal, depicting a businessman running up a stairway, demonstrating strength, determination and an enormous will to catch the train. This action was taking place in a beautiful, futuristic train station. The station appearing in the publicity of that important journal of world-renowned reputation was precisely our own Estação de Comboios do Oriente, by the arquitect Santiago Calatrava, conceived for the Expo 98, in Lisbon, and currently a strategic point of our CP train network.

It is significant to analyse the above situations in order to sustain possible conclusions.

What image does Portugal have of itself? The metaphor suggested by the Wall Street Journal publicity hints that the country possesses the privileged spaces and structures to be that determined businessman, and yet this is not the vision we have. What do we lack for this to be true? We lack confidence. To edify our self-esteem is the challenge that we must take upon ourselves, and it is, at this moment, of critical importance. We must not continue to be a postponed country, delayed by sceptics, and feeding on inconsequent promises and mediocre messiahs. Rather than preoccupying ourselves with who is responsible for the things that happen in our country, we must assume, each of us, a part of the responsibility and the blame for the good and the bad. We are not a god-chosen people, nor are we illuminated or blessed; we are no longer “conquistadores”, and our pride has become a sore excuse to maintain ourselves closed off from the rest of the world. D. João II is dead, Infante D. Henrique is dead, Vasco da Gama is dead, the Fifth Empire never existed, and it is we that populate the country now: we are the Portuguese people, with our virtues and our faults; men and women of flesh and blood; real people with real problems: computer experts, designers, businessmen, doctors, engineers, writers, research scientist, diplomats, football players, artists, filmmakers…

We live in a time of impact, of too many and contradictory impacts. The rapidly changing order of technology, information, modern biology, international politics and economics is overwhelming; we are emerged in a high speed world of drugs, images, sounds…
These are complex times, yet the world continues to progreed and change whether we have or have not an active part in the process. None of this is new, nor is it unexpected, yet the moment may have come to analyse the situations that surround us, to define objectives, to trace courses of action.
A problem that applies to individuals, but also to countries, and in this particular case to Portugal is, in addition to the lack of confidence, the lack of clear and definite objectives. Should we overcome this lack, we will succeed, as we succeeded in producing the Expo 98, and as we succeeded in modernizing our nation in scarcely two decades, an unprecedented deed in the history of our country.
Unprecedented in our history is also the quantity of works, books and essays that have been written and published lately, and of undeniable quality as is testified by the recently conferred Nobel Prize to a Portuguese writer. Never before has there been such a vast production of movies, theatre plays and artwork, or such a growth in our science, design, architecture and music. Even in the midst of a recession, there is alot of reading, writing, cinema-going, research and creation going on.
The fact is that Portugal is no longer as it was; so why continue to be afraid of assuming who are, and of showing with pride the things we do?
We are living a new moment: we are no longer included amongst the poor countries that attract multinational corporation funds, that in their thirst for profit seek out third-world places where labour is cheap and exploitation is easy. This is a good thing, and it should make us conscious that a positive stage of our development is concluded. Moreover, put aside the natural tendency to exaggerate our problems, the truth is that we are aware of our actual situation, and of where our weaknesses and strengths lie. Gradually but surely, we must continue the work and the structural changes that will take us forward one step at a time. Portugal has survived the last 860 years, and one lesson at least we must draw from our past, and that is to be patient and persistent.

Given the present conjuncture, things could be better; but the question that now arises is what is missing in Portugal? Spirit of enterprise; we need people that have clear objectives, and that are determined. Portugal no longer is the best kept secret in Europe, which is fine, for that was equivalent to being a country closed upon itself, and thus, staying behind others. It is not an effortless course we have before us, but then again it never was. It is required that we continue to work and to invest; to invest in ideas, in continuous education, to travel and make contact with that which is beyond our frontiers, and reinforce allegiances, and most importantly we must have a strong civil conscience in all we do. We must keep in mind that we have come some of the way, but that there is still so much to achieve. Things must be carried out in a positive and serious manner so to conquer respect and credibility, and not falter at the first obstacles that are encountered. As a country we have a structural, educational and cultural delay of decades, and it shouldn´t be expected that changes will happen from one day to another.

Traditionally Portuguese people are a melancholic and pessimistic people, but then they are also known to be dreamers, stubborn, courteous and easily adaptable, and it is these proverbial characteristics that must be put to use for the edification of a better Portugal. For 860 years Portuguese people have complained and wondered about the fate, but now it is important that they look ahead. It is about time that they started appreciating ourselves and worked for the future.
Dinis Guarda

Passion For Living and Dreaming: Neurological Games

September 30, 2007 1 comment

lost island spot

“I am an invisible man. No, I am not a spook like those who haunted Edgar Allan Poe; nor am I one of your Hollywood-movie ectoplasms. I am a man of substance, of flesh and bone, fibber and liquids – and I might even be said to possess a mind. I am invisible, understand, simply because people refuse to see me.” Ralph Waldo Ellison, The Invisible Man, 1952

Neurology is a branch of medicine dealing with disorders of the nervous system. Medical professionals (such as Biomedical Doctors and Physicians) specializing in the field of neurology are called neurologists and are trained to diagnose, treat, and manage patients with neurological disorders. Most neurologists are trained to treat and diagnose adults with neurological disorders. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neurological

We are all the invisible man of Ralph Ellison’s novel, living in a society that, in every area, feels the need to create more information, more layers, more connections than the preceding industrial society. We are all the invisible man in this world of images in photographic, moving images and multimedia platforms formats. We live in an aesthetically complex world, which is stimulating in a critical manner, both in terms of significance as well as in terms of its ambiguity. A world that asks difficult questions and resists facile conclusions. We all live in a reality that is a process of mediation by the individual who is perturbed by the impossibility of acting with the correct sensitivity in this enigmatic data world.

We are all Ralph Ellison’s invisible man in the tendencies of implosion that speed digital technologies impose upon this world, juxtaposing cultures, transcultural encounters, taking things to the limits of national, material, psychological and technological frontiers. We are all the invisible man, hybrid creations and creatures, identities and cultures that emerge from the infinite reconfigurations of our intrinsic codes: genetic, spiritual, atomic, numerical and digital.

“Penser le vêtement, c’ est déjà metre du langage dans le vêtement.”
Roland Barthes, Le grain de la voix

Thus, in an age that makes me remember of this Roland Barthes’ quotation, in which he discuss that the function of the clothes is not to protect and to be esthetical, but also to be a way of communication and send information, I think about art and culture the same way. All the images and information, all contemporary creation, all the contemporary platforms in the internet: Google, blogs, myspace, itube… have the best word – “Hybrid” – to translate the characteristics of the conditions of our times of complex dialogues that take into account interconnected histories. We live in a landscape made up of vectors and co-ordinates of a “neurological hybridisation”, in an atmosphere of automatic vigilance and a kind of self-guiding missiles beyond imperial hegemonies and national narratives. We live in an ambiguous landscape in which connectivities and notions such as Society, Economies and Politics are hybrid. The world is a complex game of hybrid Cultures and Identities and the eyes and brain of humanity are located precisely within this landscape of hybrid Creatures and Ecologies.

We live in a world of neurological complexity that permeates our way of thought, a crisis of nerves. We live by navigating the world of information, immersed in a sea of data, sound and noise, and, in these circumstances, we have to learn to play the “neurological game”. And to learn to play the “neurological games” that are appropriate for the needs of a global society in the age of information does not mean inventing something that is completely new. On the contrary, it is better to return to the learning of the past. To remind old theories, philosophies and icons, and view them in a new light, expanding upon those memory elements that can best be used in present times. This is our belief, within these complex systems, that have become super-complex ways of seeing the world, with its cultural politics of globalization, and living in it, we have to simplify life, we have to co-exist and live with the most elementary human principles and remain true to them.

It is here that I place my acting point of view in society, culture, arts and literature, following Foucault and its “politics of multitude”. Art and culture have to be something within its time, learning from the past and looking for the future. Contemporary creation is not assumed in the new understanding of politics; contemporary creation has to be political. It is this notion of hybridisation, this lucid action that is really important to me nowadays.

Dinis Guarda