Monday, July 11, 2011

In praise of being noble and dancing

What does being noble mean? It seems to me that being noble is a non-calculative attitude. It doesn't mean acting without consideration of the consequences, nevertheless very similar to that. It is acting while being aware of the consequences but refusing to change the action because what results of it. It is a conscious resistance to be determined by the consequences.

Well, most of the time this kind of attitude is a result of defending identity. But I think being a result of defending a fixed definition of "me" makes it a vulgar act rather than noble. It says "I am afraid of what is going to happen to me". It says "I have to resist in order to survive". It is too self-conscious to be noble.

To be noble, you have to consciously forget about everything that falls out of the action itself. The consequences are among those that fall out. The cause on the other hand is a little tricky. The cause of the action should be such a cause that would not involve any calculation whatsoever other than something that could not be called calculation: that is aesthetic evaluation. This is an evaluation of the action itself, in itself and by itself. In other and simpler words, it is going with the world without resisting but like a talented dancer, figuring out every move you make together with the world at every moment. There are no predetermined rules when it comes to life. So, being noble is the awareness of this indeterminedness and enjoying it. It is being light in the face of heaviness of consequential thinking or what might be called "the soul of gravity". It is dancing just to dance. Because it is the right thing to do, it feels good.

But what are the chances of such an attitude in a world in which everything is considered to be calculated even though it is not at all so? How could a good dancer enjoy dancing with the people who are so far removed of the concept of dance? Of course she could still dance with the world, the events by herself. But while everyone around repeat their memorized, one-way electro moves (so depressively dull), is it possible to dance alone freely? Does not a dancer need a few other dancers and a good music to dance?

To be noble necessitates a few other things it seems. First of all, it is impossible to be noble for a long time in an environment in which not considering the consequences is thought to be a dumb thing to do. This is where action itself loses all its power when it is tied to a simple lack of consideration. So the event cannot regenerate and multiply itself. This is a dead end. Just like the repetitive moves of (bad) electronic music.

Secondly, thinking of being noble as a way to resist and defend identity is in cross purposes with being noble itself while the aim is lightness as opposed to heaviness. All that calculation is a heavy burden to carry around just to survive a little bit more. Could crawling be called a life while there is a possibility of flying?

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