“A Seed of a Thought”: an Altersation

Anarchist Philosopher and Best Goalkeeper Persona talk about intuition, philosophy and the 2018 World Cup

Anarchist Philosopher (A.P): Hello, Adriano Patrick. It’s been a while since the World Cup, I’m sure you’re over it by now.

Best Goalkeeper in the World Adriano Patrick (BGK):  This is a lot of sarcasm and it’s very good. It’s very healthy, but not too much of it.

A.P: as in the Aristotelian Golden Mean?

BGK: do you mean the golden middle way? Of course. This is the right way to live. But what I said about sarcasm is less about philosophy and more about being nice and friendly to people.

A.P: I don’t think there is a philosophy that doesn’t revolve around how we treat people. Well, I intend to say, a decent, moral and meaningful philosophy, that is. also, I enjoyed reading your previous alterview, where you talked about the tragedy and what is, fundamentally, the tragic.

BGK: thank you, but this is not philosophy. It is a way of acting and seeing things.

A.P: yes, alright, that’s what I said, that in its essence, what you refer to as way of interpreting and acting in the world, is in fact philosophy. Of course, there’s no doubt a philosophy should be verbalized and methodized, because, well, once it’s not it can be seen as mere intuition, although, of course, intuition, in some philosophical schools, doesn’t exists.

BGK: that is not true.  There is intuition, it is a fact –

A.P: well that, not so much in a strict logical sense, but more as a figure of speech, is a paradox!

BGK: I understand maybe the word ‘fact’ was too much, but yes, there is intuition. And all philosophies need intuition!

A.P: I must stress that I’m not speaking against intuition in a purely deterministic or reductionist manner. What I intend to say was that if we let ourselves base our philosophies and even, so to speak, our ways of life and points of view, on non-verbalized explanations – which we tend call intuition in the lack of better words, although, of course, well, I can think of social constructionism as better words in this sense – then, well, we’d just carry ourselves in the world unaware and to some extent perhaps even unaccountable for our actions and choices. And I see a great basic ethical flaw in that. But perhaps I should have asked, in what sense do you define intuition?

BGK: you use words like they are attacking you. Maybe it’s because you think very fast. I think that I think very fast too, but my thoughts don’t always need words, or maybe they just need less words. I cannot say what intuition is, it’s hard to put in words, like you said. But I believe philosophy speaks our intuitions. The feeling that something is right or makes sense is both rational and irrational at the same time.

A.P: You don’t suppose it’s, well, acquired? As in, for example, when an app is said to be ‘intuitive’, it’s clear that it’s an acquired, technological intuition.

BGK: Yes, very good. Intuition is also acquired, I agree.

A.P: I see, well, alright, so you don’t define intuition as something similar to physical instincts, that is to say, you’re not entirely an essentialist.

BGK: I see a connection between physical instincts and intuition, but it is not the same thing, no. intuition comes with experience. I have intuitions in the goal today that are more sharp than they were ten years ago. This is very easy to see. This is physical intuition.

A.P: did you also have an intuition to play for Brazil in the World Cup, when you have a French citizenship and could have played for France?

BGK: yes, this is very good. Sarcasm. It wasn’t intuition, it was a choice. A choice can be rational and irrational too. This was a choice and I don’t regret it.

A.P: how do you feel about being part of an essentially capitalist, explosive, nationalistic campaign such as the World Cup? That of all places was held in Russia?

BGK: yes, I thought that you will talk about this. I am not a nationalist. This isn’t my box. And I am not blind to the money that is involved in football in these levels. I think about things like that. And I keep my spirit with me to not get lost in the flaws of this world, like you.

A.P: well, of course, there’s a difference between keeping your spirit, which I’m not so sure what it means but I assume it refers to some private sentiment of morality, which, of course, can never be private, because morality is essentially intersubjective and public, and between trying to make a difference, as in, for example, saying that you refuse to play in Russia.

BGK: if I refuse to play, what good will it make?

A.P: Well, of course, delegitimizing Russia for its political oppression, as in, very simply, not allowing it to thrive on a fake image of normality –

BGK: what is a normal country?

A.P: I have no idea what a normal country is, but I know when a government corrupts civil society and demolishes human rights. In fact, today, the more a state is democratic and pro human rights, the smaller the chance it will host a campaign such as the World Cup or the Olympic Games, because its citizens would oppose the meaningless waste of tax money for what is, fundamentally, a gain of aggressive symbolic capital in the form of mass nationalistic entertainment.

BGK: I see, yes, this is very good. This is very good explanation. The pitch isn’t a neutral space, like some people try to say. I understand this also. I also believe that people should mix. When you say the World Cup is nationalistic, I understand this. But I also think it isn’t. I think waving your flag is a more comfortable way of looking at people who wave other flags. I think the World Cup is like a travelling circus. it comes to you and helps you meet people from all the world, and helps you see the similar and not the different in all people. This is why I cannot refuse. Yes, I want to be part of this circus that isn’t always fair, because there is nothing in the world that is always one hundred per cent fair.

A.P: If I go with your analogy, a circus, essentially, is meant to show you those who are different so when they leave, you’d be more comfortable staying with the familiar and the similar. It asserts order, it doesn’t interfere with it.

BGK: that’s very good, because no analogy is perfect. It’s a seed of a thought, that’s the way I think about what I do. You can disagree, it’s also very good.

A.P: I do disagree.

BGK: that’s very good. We are waving our flags to each other. It is better than refusing to talk.

A.P: I never talked about refusing to talk. I talked about refusing to participate in something that benefits and legitimizes power in the guise of sports.

BGK: I understand this, but I am talking about what people can also benefit under the radar of all the big words.  There is always a little light you can find, like fireflies.

A.P: as in Didi Huberman’s “Survival of the Fireflies”?

BGK: I don’t know what it is, but it sounds very good.

A.P: it is. It could support your argument, to some extent, perhaps. but that’s for another time. It was good talking to you, even though you don’t make a lot of sense.

BGK: most things don’t make sense at all.

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