We can estimate but never predict the future. We never know what changes in the wind may occur once we throw the arrow of our actions. For this reason we never know exactly how our lives will be once we put our planning in action. The target, then, works only as inspiration, direction and reference. To act is always a risk taking. When travelling to Israel I thought my experience there would be of hard and boring work, and it was, but many unexpected experiences came along and left their stamp in my memories which makes me forget about the boring and hard moments as irrelevant. My expectations may have caused me to appreciate the experiences much better, reason why positive expectations can be dangerous, making one not appreciate the positive aspects of experiences because of higher goals. Negative expectations can be even more dangerous, because we think we are happy for what we got since it is more than we expected, accepting what actually may still make us miserable, for believing to be in an advantage or privileged position, not willing to risk losing it with further action. Like when I talk about the health care in Germany not being public, not being universal and not being free but the contrary, it is private and very expensive. - Different from what people abroad believe and say, and, also different from what a lot of Germans tell foreigners or even tell to themselves. When presented to such questioning the answer is often a comparison to others countries - specially comparison to American health care system, not because it is good but, the opposite, because any other system looks good comparing to America's - in order to point what they got as better than what they are comparing it to, and so to accept it as it is, as justification to not take the risk of action to change it, overlooking its own reality.
We look for happiness and pleasures in life. Different from what many people think, happiness and pleasure are not sensed in a constant state of mind, body and life. It is found in the changes, in the overcoming of distress. They are the transitional state of mind. "It is action, not rest, that constitutes our pleasure" (John Adams). This is what games do for us, they present us distress to overcome and then to sense pleasure out of the challenging stress. The game, or the entertainment, is a safe spaces to risk action for not belonging and not affecting our real lives - unless we bring our real lives to it or it to our real lives - so it can be a distraction from the challenges of real life, as a way to accept what you got in real life for having somewhere else to risk action and whatever else to pursue pleasure.
We all have the impulse to act and from our act to create something. These things that we create, is the materialization in the world of what is in our mind. The mind which is what Antonio Damasio demonstrates to be created by our emotion and feelings (somatic experiences) . The risk of not having control of the outcome of our action is the reason in mythologies the hero tends to die, or suffer at the end of his life . The hero's mythological narrative is the expression of a fear of what we today call the Will. The hero is the person with a strong Will to act in life, but who also suffers the consequences of the unpredictability of their act.
Every Will to act comes with the opposite force in us which blocks us to act, because of fear. The fear of losing control of our act or the unexpected outcome . This fear is unconscious but it is where our taboos empathies and social rules come from. People who lack it act beyond moral, ethical, empathy or social norms, willing to risk everything in their action without fear; They are psychopaths. 
Otto Rank described three types of individuals. The first is the so-called normal people, which is what society judges to be the people who fit in and adapt well to society's psychological ideology. The so-called normal people, according to Rank, are the ones who can well balance their act and their fears. They can do that because they feel being part of the total in society. Their act, work, creation, contributing in a small proportion to their families, communities, societies, jobs, makes them feel integrated to it all and so fulfilled. It requires no much impulse to act, or will, to feel fulfilled from their action – so having a sense belonging .
The neurotics are the second type described by Rank - using the term from the past, which among others are the anxious people today. They are the people who have a psychology that don't fit in the dominant psychological ideology, and so, have troubles to adapt or change their psychology in order to fit in. For society, and its modern and postmodern standard ideology, they have psychological problems that must be fixed, because it is interpreted that any psychology that doesn't fit in the modern and postmodern economic demand is seen as illness. What Otto Rank and many other thinkers from the past suggest is that neurotic people have no psychological problem at all, no illness. Their problem, instead, is society which excludes them. Their illness is caused by society forcing them to repress who they are in order to fit in its limited standards. This limitation was narrowed with the capitalist work doctrine and the equality ideology. The neurotic agony is that they feel segregated and alienated from society because it is how society sees and treats them. Because of their segregated feeling, different from the so-called normal people, they have a strong desire to act as attempt to fit in, to "becoming normal", and with their actions feel belonging ; Because a such strong impulse to plunge in life and act in it, it creates an equal very strong fear, making them unable to act ; They find themselves blocked in their fear and so the feeling of being aside of society; The society which demands the neurotics to fit in and "be normal" and not "lazy".
The artists are like the Neurotics. They also have a very strong impulse to act, also because of feeling segregated from the world as it is. But the artists accept and want to aside from society because they found a way to be who they are in their own world, where they find the pleasure of their act, as overcoming the distress caused by society in creating their own world. What differs the artist type from the neurotics is that the first can eventually find a balance between being who they are and acting in the world. After having the pleasure of acting in their own world, with their art, where they can be who they are, they are able to step in and act in the world as it is; After creating his art the artist feels fulfilled and so they are able to step in the world of the average humans to act in it, until the impulse that makes them to feel segregated from it kicks in again, making them step out of society and isolate themselves in their creation .
The neurotic don't accept his feelings of not belonging, and so they don't accept to be segregated, different, aside from society's psychological ideology norm. Their strong will to act, and fear that blocks them to act, is because they desperately want to recreate themselves to fit in society. While the artist embraces who they are, not only accepting their identity and being aside from society, but they want to go beyond with it by stamping their psychology and individual identity in their creation; acting against society that wants to make them "normal".
It seems to me that the artist type, because they can step in and out of the common world of men and women, - as somebody who can step out of a landscape and so see its total - is able to understand and see certain aspects of life that average people are not able to see so clearly. They can see the stage where people interact with each other, but as spectators and not only as actors.
The classic understanding of hypocrite people is of a person who is not lying to others but to themselves; Because the hypocrite is before anyone else lying to himself he is being sincere to people who he expresses the beliefs he convinced themselves of . In this classic understanding we, in a certain way, are all hypocrites, because we all have two sides; The individual and the social side which we act in society. After a certain age we start to act another self other than our own, in order to have privacy for our individual self; To not over expose ourselves and fit in . Before we are able to act and learn to act, in our childhood, when we feel over exposed and vulnerable in the social arena, we cry of frustration for being lost and not knowing what to do. One of the main functions of playing during childhood is the learning of acting, pretending to be something or someone else and so hide our individual selves. Eventually we become so used to our act that we mistake ourselves with the idealized character we act in public, becoming unaware of our acting and others acting in the stage of social life.
This acting in the social stage of life is what makes us social beings, which the classic philosophers called political beings . Society is an artificial arena we create for ourselves so in it we can be equals, since originally and essentially we are not equals but all different . What makes people equal is the public realm of politics. "Isonomy guaranteed equality, but not because all men were born or created equal, but, on the contrary, because men were by nature not equal, and needed an artificial institution, the polis, which by virtue of its space would make them equal” (Hannah Arendt).
Equality exists only in this specifically political realm, where men met one another as citizens and not as private persons. The equality of the Polis was an attribute of the polis and not of men, who received their equality by virtue of citizenship, not by virtue of birth. Neither equality or freedom was understood as a quality inherent in human nature. They were the artificial human effort and qualities of a man-made world.
This public political appearance, the act under people's eyes, is what makes humans civilized. Without it - without feeling equal - there is not politics but violence, and humans become beasts. This is why the medieval Christian philosophers wrote that God’s ubiquitousness is because he is in the eyes of every person - and in every person; The reason Christianity main philosophy is Agape: Find god in people and people in God, so then people can love each other unconditionally. This love gives two people the trust to act with each other and then feel fulfilled together . Without such love one feels alienated from people and so feeling threatened by them, incapable to act with each other which causes anxieties.
The first thing I noticed when I moved to Germany was that Germans have social anxieties. I would say that Brazilian, who are very social, also have strong social anxieties, but of a different kind. Before Germany I was living in Ireland, where talking with strangers in any situation is common and even the opposite of what I experience in Germany; Instead of anxiety the Irish feel comforted when interacting with another person. What differs the irish from the German is that the first have a more ludic approach to life, to their act, while Germans take it as a serious matter, averse to risk and so to acting.
Every apartment and houses I lived in Germany had problems with the walls, which one can hear clearly on the other side as if there is no wall at all. While it is said that privacy is an important thing for Germans I feel I never had privacy in Germany; I can hear every private talk and intimate life of my neighbours and they can hear mine. It makes me feel I'm never on my own and everything I do I have to be concerned about those who may hear it. For that reason I gave up playing guitar, still photography at home and some workouts at home just to respect my neighbours' space, meaning not distract them with my presence. What was left for me was reading books, Yoga, listening to music and movies with headphones. On the other hand, reading and Yoga is also difficult because three of my neighbours don't have the same care, which makes it hard to do anything that demands a certain concentration.
Eventually I developed Tensor Tympani Syndrome, which is caused when one over protects the ears, as I was always wearing earplugs or headphones at home. My problem doubled then, because while I can not leave home or open the windows without protecting my over sensitive ears, because of the developed syndrome, I have now to avoid wearing earplugs as much as possible at home in order to not make it worse.
I tried to talk to the loud neighbours but they didn't help. I talked to the building administrator but he also didn't care, nor the police. What they all say is that the building is old and there is nothing they can do about it. It sounds as a deny to actually face the problem, by accepting it, pretending the problem is not social but individual; Me, who as complaning person don't fit in and want to act. Because it is exactly for the building being old, and having problems, people should be extra careful, not careless pretending that there are no problems. I was even told to not go talk to my upstairs neighbour, for him being very old. I don't understand why I can't talk to a neighbour about them being loud for being old. Meanwhile I developed an illness and nobody cares about helping me to get better but worse, because I am young. I sure would move out if I had the financial conditions. The point is the social norm created to avoid individual action.
This lack of privacy makes it difficult to be alone with one's own thoughts, which is essential for the psychological aspect of the individual being; Being able to step outside of the social stage and have a private life . It might be the reason so many researches show that Germany is among the countries with the highest number of people with psychological illness. "Never is he more active than when he does nothing, never is he less alone than when he is by himself." - Cato
With my ear condition I could not work in the job I had and I should not work on most jobs. From a successful self-employed business I became jobless and I got a part-time job instead. Because it is hard to sleep with loud neighbours when I should not wear earplugs I have missed many days of work because of tiredness, which makes it hard to keep this job or any job I may get. So I got fired from the MiniJob I had got.
I talked to my quiet neighbours and they told me that they don't complain about the loud people because they feel scared or because they know it won't help. They suggested me to put on loud music and hope for the loud neighbours to move out. Apparently it is what many people do.
What calls my attention is the fact people avoid talking to their neighbours. When I try they act as either annoyed, anxious to end the talk or in denial of the loudness despite it being evident. In short, people feel very alienated from each other. When people feel alienated there is no politics, because politics is the safe space where people can talk - and then act - with each other as equals; Where empathy emerges because it means to find oneself in others. As the ancient Greek philosophy says, we are political beings because we are able to talk, which requires interaction with another human being; What makes us humans and not beasts. Without it, without the political space where we can find ourselves in one another, what remains is violence; This violence is often expressed in absolutist certitude, used as a tool to avoid the need to understand people and situations ; Reducing reality to an ideal, and illusion, standard.
While in Germany, and among many people worldwide, it is common for people to show certainty about everything what it hides is the fear of being wrong, of the uncertainty of action's outcome; The strong certitude is the social being hiding the individual being fears and denying it, first to themselves and then to those who they act with. Which is what I believe to be what makes Germans anxious. Their attempt to perfectionism requires absolutist certitude and so people’s unpredictable individualism and particularities are obstacles to it. While one can persuade themselves of knowing and so solving everything, what actually happens is that people resume the reality to a rule standard which makes sense to their certitudes and not to reality itself. They avoid adventure with the unknown outcome of the spontaneous act , for being afraid of it. - Of being spontaneous.
I went to several doctors looking for help with my Tensor Tympani Syndrome. Instead of investigating it, they tell me it is just Tinnitus and nothing else. They ignore my ears' pain complaints as if I am giving an excuse, for being lazy, for not wanting to work or for being dramatic. Because doctors ignore my complaints and pretend there is nothing wrong, my illness only gets worse. So I did what doctors hate the most, I tried to find out about my condition in the internet and I got a rich didactic information, therapy and prevention that doctors in Germany never gave me.
I always thought of doctors as problem solvers, which doesn't mean they solve all illnesses and complications but investigate them as an attempt to understand and solve them. This is not a particular problem in Germany, but Germany has a bureaucratic approach to life. When a doctor told me to avoid loud places I asked her to write it down so I could present it to my boss and to JobCenter. She said she could not do that because, according to her, what I have is just Tinnitus. For the bureaucratic system, which includes the health system, I am not ill, despite my complaints.
"My senior for tomorrow told me “I expect you to be 0% knowledgeable but 100% reliable.” I’ve been repeating it to myself all day. THAT I can deliver.." (Scrublifemd - From Twitter).
And this kind of denial of problems, pretending everything is just doing fine, showing a big certitude and being annoyed with any kind of questioning of their "know better", is the norm. The similar experiences I find in the German service industry. Or a very common experience of people smoking on the door way. While they are technically outside the smoke comes inside of the building. So everybody just pretends all is fine because they are technically following the rules, which then becomes a useless rule. A lot of people get angry or annoyed if asked to smoke somewhere else - Ask to adapt themselves to the situation and individuals around them which the rules were supposed to be working for.
The strong attachment to rules seems a way of being able to live in society without concern about people around, without need to adapt to each situation so avoiding interaction with strangers; Avoid Politics. So instead of adapting to individual situations, which requires spontaneity, individual decision and action, they rely on the violence of the bureaucratic rule that maintains people alienated from each other. A bureaucratic social relation and communication. Bureaucracy is impersonal. It is not the individual act choice but the violent imposed rule from above power. From this psychological point of view people feel no responsibility for their act, and so for the consequence of their act on people around them.
Everywhere else, as contrast, we have the motivational ideology preaching that everything has a solution. But such a solution is not for the public helm because problems are privatized . So the individual has to deal with social problems they find themselves in, as their own problems, accepting the social problem as “just how life is”. The solution may not be legal, moral or ethical when one believes that there is no individual problem that one can not overcome on their own, with the stigma of being seen as lazy if they don’t. If there were no problem without a solution we would be God itself. And it is what many people are attempting to but they become evil instead.
Different from the past, today we don’t believe in finding God in others but solely in us, as individuals and not as social beings, which is basically the same as believing to be God itself. In a world where you are seen as lazy if you don’t overcome all your obstacles a lot of people are left behind, seen as deserving their fate, or as victims of reality as it is. Hoping the bureaucratic public institutions take care of everybody so people don’t have to act spontaneous to one another. It makes a society of lonely isolated people , even if they find no real privacy to step out of the public sphere stage.
People try to show their support and help without actually understanding the person but by giving generic advices, which is just pretending to help by convincing oneself of helping others, without trying to understand the individual particularities and spontaneous act to help them in their particularity. It makes people who are supposed to get help and supported feel even more isolated. The anxious, isolated and left behind people, who are feeling depressed, need not generic advices but social integration ; Being able to step in to act in public as they are, and step out to create their private inner world. Otherwise they feel locked in their private inner world and not being able to act in the stage of life, at the same time not knowing their individual self. The biggest and main, if not only, help they need is to be understood, is to have people who listen them, is to be able to act; Play in the stage of life and take it as it really is: just a play where we can materialise our inner world, by express our feelings, which are our somatic experiences.
"The poor man's conscience is clear; yet he is ashamed.[...] He feels himself out of the sight of others, groping in the dark. [...] He is not disapproved, censured, or reproched; he is only not seen. [...] To be wholly overlooked, and to know it, are intolerable." (John Adams).
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[2, 13] ARENDT, H. The Human Condition: Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2018. Second Edition.
[3, 4, 5, 18] RANK, O. Psychology and The Soul. Mansfield Center, CT : Martino Publishing, 2011.
[4, 8, 15, 16] ARENDT, H. The Life of the Mind: The groundbreaking investigation on how we think. New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 1977.
[6, 7, 9] RANK, O. Art and Artists: Creative Urge and Personality Development. New York: W.W. Norton, 1989.
[10,12,13, 14] ARENDT, H. On Revolution. London: Faber & Faber, 2016.
 WINNICOTT, D.W. Human Nature. London: Free Association Books, 1999.
[17, 18] RANK, O. Beyond Psychology. New York: Dover, 1958.
 ARENDT, H. Origins of Totalitarianism. UK: Pinguin Classics, 2017.
 HUSTVEDT, S. The Writing Self and the Psychiatric Patient. Separata de; HUSTVEDT, S. A Woman Looking at Men Looking at Women: Essays on Art, Sex and the Mind. UK: Sceptre, 2017
Street Portraits and No Violent Communication
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Is photography an easy way to make art?
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The photo mechanical eye culture and the need of abstract vision
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Human duality inquietude and creative pleasure.
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My attention is not in technical perfectionism