Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Simplexity and Complicity

We generaly despise prejudice as a vicious attitude, but without prejudice, we wouldn't be able to function in this world. The fact is that our brain takes a number of shortcuts when interpreting the overload of sensorial data arriving for processing every milisecond. We don't take the time to analyse all the nuances of shape and color for every image that reaches our retinas, we just cut and paste everything in a fraction of seconds, throwing roughly-cut shapes into big categories such as, dunno, 'furniture', 'animals', 'plants', 'tools', etc. This is a pretty sweet evolutionary deal: you don't want to reflect on the existence of a tiger when you see one, you wanna have a knee-jerk reaction of getting the hell away from anything that even resembles something that could kill you in no time.

This has, however, made us incredibly dumb when it comes to civilization. When we left behind most of the daily struggle for survival, as a species, we came to face ever more complex and nuanced problems. There is no simple answer on the pressing issues demanding our decisions... We have achieved plenty, but there is much more to overcome. The sheer fact that over a billion people are starving right now, as the food that could feed them is wasted away in richer countries is evidence of our collective dumbness when it comes to societal governance. There is no shortage of examples, but I'm not taking that road right now.

My point, with this post, is: The problems we face are complex and its solutions will be no less intrincate and difficult to dicern and implement. We shouldn't, as citizens, let savvy politicians fool us with oversimplifying, demagogic arguments. What we should do is work together to evercome our differences, and learn to hold on to our principles and values. For freedom is to be able to decide for ourselves what is better based on what we believe is true. Not trying to fool ourselves or any other person, not trying to impose our views, but accepting that everyone sees life differently and that no one has privileges. Anyway, I do hold that those with wider scopes for understanding and action have a greater responsibility to apply it for the greater good and not just to serve themselves a larger piece of the cake.


  1. Wise and timeless yet contemporary. There is no way the future is lost with youth this willing and able. You have a lot to teach to the elder generations, I hope are patient and are humble enough to do so, for many are receptive and make it gratifying.

  2. Mandei as fotos pro seu mail.Tem cd do supreme beings of leisure de bobeira num sebo da 307n.Eu sei pq tive que vender meus pra poder farrear carnaval...

  3. Filipe,
    Parabéns pelo seu texto. Gostei muito. O inglês está fantástico.