From hell to hell

From hell to hell

The slaughterhouse, the „animal farm“, the places of „breeding“, the „animal industries“ are the most atrocious attempts to establish the illusion-of-a-fact, that Man (the human species) is the one who can decide about “heaven” and “hell”, and animals can, without impunity, be condemned by him/her to be to be born, to live and to die in hell – to go through hell. Humans have decided that the animal is predestined to not ever be able to ever escape the Man-given fate, brought about by the defamation and by the homoncestrist philosophy and practice that rules the acts and the thinking in his/her society.

On this basis an artificially established sense of a fake “heaven” can be equally aroused and set up by creating enclaves of “rights shareholders”, a contractualist construction and plotting, to which all humans theoretically belong, on the scale of being more of a “master” or more of a “slave”.

We all are except from the man made hell, and we all destined this not-place to be the place for animal life.

We think, we plot, therefore we CAN be the unpunished culprits, we think … .

What lets you escape the plot of man-made hell, is to understand and to set forth that A BEING IS, AND THEREFORE HE/SHE/IT THINKS, AND THERE FOR YOU THINK because you bond with the worldly phenomenons. The plotters consider such a perspective as invalid, and under his/her terms as “un-objective” – within the frame of reference his thinking allows him the draw. With this perspective onto our shared world, we would indiscriminately share this type of a “thinking” with everything/everyone that/who just IS.

We set up a demarcation line, cemented by that “hell” we create on all scales everywhere where the not-human space IS.

It’s a massmurder on the biological argument.

Another concept of a hell

I reckon that the real hell, that I think humans tried to combat as an idea, by establishing their own game’s rules, the real hell is the consciousness that creates an inner pain in the soul when one knows that one does injustice to others.

The artificial hell of unfair judgement i.e. injustice, destroys the logic of responsibility, respect and love, and it punishes the good and “protects” the wrongdoers or rather evildoers.

But the question will remain forever though. Injustice can never be sold as justice, on the long run. Injustice brings more injustices with it. There is no “human order” such as we hold it for real now. The natural order always encompasses the human concern with it. The natural order is not that what we want to make out of it in pure self-interest and evilwill.

The question remains: where our conscience will take us to: to heaven or to hell, within our own thinking.

From hell to hell – I am. And therefore I think.

The animalesque features of the devil show how much at absurdity our humanity lies with itself, when it comes to who is the evil and who receives the evil.

This is a fragment. I have written a longer and more “prosaic” or structured (or less poetical) essay about how an assumed “human good” seeks to establish itself towards an unjustly attributed “animal(-esque) evil”. I hope I get around translating that text sometime soon. For those of you who can read German, here is the link: http://www.simorgh.de/own_public/pl_vom_guten_menschen.pdf

Thoughts about the languages of animals

multicolored dog by farangis yegane

THOUGHTS ABOUT THE LANGUAGES OF ANIMALS
Palang Latif

I can’t see how a term such as ‘animal language’ could pose a problem to anybody when it directly refers to an animal’s way of communication. I am however critical of people who ‘translate’ animals in stereotype ways.

Nevertheless I could apologize for using a word that describes the phenomenon that humans see as exactly the very one criterion which most sharply shows the difference between humans and all other animals. The word ‘language’ has evolved in the human mind and possesses as such its linguistic legitimacy.

The word ‘language’ belongs to one of the core conceptions of the most drastic forms of negative speciesism. Regarding this presumed ground I have to stand upon, I apologize for the insufficience of my attempt to communicate something for which I can insofar only borrow this word, and I dare to ask you to perhaps think of a second word ‘language’ – free of value in a sense – which would only describe what we may not be able to describe yet within the borders of our set of regulations as we have them currently in regards to language; I am well aware that people usually don’t want to accept that this one human term ‘language’ can be used tightly paralleled to animal language, and that so far the word ‘animal language’ has only be tolerated on a scientifical level to refer to human parameters that have been applied to animal communication.

Animals speak their languages, but what their languages consist of, could only be understood if we communicated with them on a level that allows them to use their language.

Animal languages work like human languages, where you can translate what you understand and try to put how-you-can-understand-the-message or that what you understand into your terms of your language.The same happens when I talk to any other individual: I comprehend what she/he/it conveys in the restrictedness or unrestrictedness of my own terms. My terms don’t merely underly semantics – though they might be translated back and forth into semantics, morphems and syntax. My own terms and concepts have, in spite of their belonging to my system of language, a restricted meaning. In a very basic sense I have to rely on that what I understand or confer to that what I perceive.

The languages of animals (there are more animal languages than human languages of course) are seen by us as having a super restricted meaning. If we take the position of the nonhuman side in general, we can say though that human languages are restricted in that they only apply to humans. And seen from a standpoint which takes into account the question of perspective, I can say that if I don’t understand a dog, it’s because she belongs to a different animal ‘group’ when compared to my human group.

‘Communication’ infers meaning to the act of communicating on any level of any sound produced by a communicative agent.

Does language necessarily have to be connected to the history, the past, the present and the future of human progress? Why should animals have ever evolutionary or in any wise chosen to contextualize their existence with the human existence? A being of an animal group or I’d like to say an animal culture, clearly differenciates that what is important to their own existence; and I would call this rather their philosophy instead of just an evolutionary occurence.

I find it permissible to use a word of the human language to describe something I witness, on an experiential basis, about the side of someone (animals) who uses another language. Also ,I prefer to call the expresssed existence of nonhuman animals a philosphy, since it is too simple and anthropocentrically self-serving to underlie animal existence pure evolutionary ends. I do draw from my personal observations which seem sufficient for me to make my own judgements in this case and to make a decision about what to think here.

Basically I think that everybody knows that animals have their languages, but that we usually deny that these languages, that we don’t understand, have any meaning at all. But how would we not deny any meaning of animal communication that would go beyond the notions that our societies generally have about even the being itself of animals; we deny the fact of a self-authorative being of animals in itself in it’s whole meaning. So, no surprise that we draw major qualitative lines. In terms of language, we create a complicated building of restrictions to exclude the nonhuman animals from the comparatively tolerant perspectives that we have in regards to the pluralism of human languages. (It’s ok for a human language to be completely different, just because it’s human.)

We deny another animal that it’s not instinctal, because it’s not a human. You can indeed call everything an instict. Still you can’t really prove that it is “instict”. You can just put the ‘supposed carrier of an instict’ in a setting where they are treated as such instinctual things and seen as such, and interpreted as such.

Possibilities

Human rights in favour of animal rights may hopefully be another way to convey that an opinion of a human majority can’t represent a truth about any individual animal and the whole animal groups:The animal individual itself is a truth-bearer since it exists, and simply by that it represents, through how it lives (in its own rights and in its own terms) a truth. Just like I judge humans I meet by the impact of truth (their actions are possible just by shere existence), I would want to be as just as I can towards the ways in which individual animals live.

Art doesn’t function through semantics, since there are shapes and colours!
Micky Mouse doesn’t function through semantics, since there are figures and action!
Snowball doesn’t function through semantics, since there is Lisa taking her seriously enough!
Music doesn’t function through semantics, since there is play and composition!
Oppression doesn’t function through semantics, since there are suppressors
Love doesn’t funtion through semantics, since there is understanding and misunderstanding
Peace doesn’t funtion through semantics, since there are underlying actions … And this array could go on and on. Anyway, and still this is all part of our language?

What we do when we speak about ‘animals’ and ‘language’ is: We reduce the complexity of animal communication to linguitstical terms into which they may not fit. Instead of admitting the existence and relevance of other communicative systems as being really independent from our systems and thus not explainable through purely and solely biologcal criteria (insinct).

I have compounded two things:

1. the function of the term ‘instinct’ as a) serving to restrict the notion of a socio-ethical plane as to only having developed in and being attributable to humans and ‘human groups/cultures’ and b) its intended reduction of the scope and meaning of communication in nonhuman animals to a biologically explainable and manipulatively determinable code,

and 2. I have defined linguistics as an inadequate means of setting general rules for a communicative validity.

Instincts and linguistics are things that are working in our systems of categorisation.

In regards to the self-cetegorization going along with this, I also want to point out that our own language does not base a) on merely a functional basis neither in connection to the agent that uses language nor in connection with the subjects that language seeks to deal with, and b) that our language might also not just be a compound of what linguistics (and maybe physiological aspects of speaking added or so) alone can make out of it.

Generally: Cultural (in a non-homocentric sense, i.e. implying “the natural” on an equal scale)) and individual aspects play a role too, as well with humans as with animals when communicating!

I do state again that the word culture can to my opinion also be applied to animals – if one allows a culture to be really and profoundly different [from “our” cultures] too.

The multicolored dog in the top left corner is by Farangis Yegane, from her book ‘Farbenlehre’ – Color Theory, see an excerpt here: http://www.simorgh.de/objects/251107_1 .

This essay ist also on my veganswines.com site at: http://www.veganswines.com/andishe/animallanguage.htm and published in my veganswines reader 08 (Paddling of the Ducks educational press) in a printed form.

Molavi Balkhi (Rumi): Denke, welche Welten im Handel mit der Vernunft sind!

Denke, welche Welten im Handel mit der Vernunft sind! Wie weit dieser Ozean der Vernunft ist!

In diesem süßen Ozean bewegen sich unsere Formen schnell, wie Becher auf der Oberfläche des Wassers:
Bis sie sich füllen, schwimmen sie wie Schüsseln oben auf dem Meer, aber wenn die Schüssel gefüllt ist, sinkt sie hinein.

Die Vernunft ist versteckt, und allein eine Welt der Phänomene ist uns sichtbar:
unsere Formen sind die Wellen oder die sprühenden Tropfen dieses verborgenen Ozeans.

Was auch immer die Form zu einem Mittel der Herangehensweise an die Vernunft macht
– durch dieses Mittel wirft der Ozean der Vernunft die Form weit hinfort.

So lange wie das Herz nicht die Ursache seines Bewusstseins sieht, so lange wie der Pfeil nicht den weit-schießenden Bogenschützen sieht,
denkt er, der somit blind ist, dass sein Pferd verloren ist, obgleich währenddessen er sein Pferd starrsinnig auf der Straße vorantreibt.

Dieser gute Freund denkt sein Pferd ist verloren gegangen, während sein Pferd ihn voranträgt wie der Wind.
Lamentierend und suchend rennt dieser Hohlkopf von Tür zu Tür, in jeder Richtung, und fragt und sucht:

„Wo und wer ist der, der mein Pferd gestohlen hat?“ Was ist dieses Tier unter deinem Schenkel, Oh Meister? „Ja, das ist mein Pferd, aber wo ist mein Pferd?“

Oh behänder Reiter auf der Suche nach deinem Pferd, komme zu dir! Der Geist ist aus der Sicht verloren, weil er so manifest und nah ist:
Wie, wo du deinen Bauch mit Wasser voll hast, bist du trockenlippig wie ein Krug?

Molavi Balkhi

Übersetzung: Palang Latif

 

WHAT ARE “RIGHTS”?

What makes up a „right“?

Image: Farangis Yegane http://moosh-o-gorbeh.farangis.de

Is it you yourself who decides about what you consider to be your “right”? It’s an inner process, isn’t it, that you believe you ought to have a right to breathe, a right to walk wherever you want to, a right to say whatever you feel like saying.

There is another layer of the term “right” that is not an inner process but that marks instead that what the society, or the whole human world considers to be a “right” or your “right” respectively. This form of a “legal right” – lets ground it upon the basis of a generalized form of all legal human rights taken together as, so to speak, a “generic” type of a right the humans actually “grant” you, themselves as a group, or a group within the human group – this generic type of an exclusively human right (our current “legal right”) can be detached and even really be something different than the type of right you give yourself.

Without the outer form of a right that is given to you as a person or that is in contrast NOT given to any other living sentient being, you or any sentient being still has their inner sense of what I would call a right. It’s not so that a sense of right (which has something to do with rights and wrongs, as strange as we may think this would be) is something that only exists if you are told what is wrong and what is right. A sense of what you personally may consider a right is something dependent on the beings socialization, on its social contexts. And yes, I do call the behaviour of nonhuman animals amongst other nonhuman animals too a form of social behaviour.

Now if people say “rights” are nothing natural in the case of “animal rights”, and Animal Rights can only be granted on a more or less arbitrary basis, they are wrong insofar in which one can easily realize that all rights in the purest form are something that has to be dealt with on a subjective and a socio-ethical plane.

Rights are natural, because rights stem from self-experience and social interaction. Legal rights on the contrast are quite arbitrary.

Palang Latif, Animal Rights and Politics, I had previously posted this specific fragment on our visual opinions workshop blog http://www.farangis.de/blog/what-are-rights

Animal Rights and Human Rights, your rights, as interconnected

Image: Farangis Yegane http://crownofthecreation.farangis.de

This is from my short fragment series: neo-vegan perspectives

Animal Rights and Human Rights, your rights, as interconnected
Palang Latif

How can Animal Rights and Human Rights be interlocked politically in a constructive way, instead of using Human Rights against Animal Rights.

We often tend to think that Animal Rights and Human Rights would exclude each other, and the stereotypical AR vs. HR question, about whom you would save first if you had to: your dog or your child, is being asked as if one had to pass a witch-test which is going to decide your fate as a proper Human- or Animal Rights advocate. A more reasonable view would let us come to the conclusion that narrowing things down to the extremes isn’t really a good approach upon which a rights debate can be lead.

The focus in such a question that seeks to radically separate two instances (two situative phenomena occurring in a wider context) from each other, is almost suggestive, if not ignorant, in its view towards the facets of reality that make up the complexity of life as the living beings experience it.

Put in a situation where we had to decide between rescuing one living being and another, it is likely that we would not want to decide for one and against the other. We should consider the perspectival option that we’d want to save every being that’s in despair or in a desperate situation. We could think: in any situation where a being needs help, a being needs a helper!

As Animal Rights advocates

As Animal Rights people we clearly want both: a full consideration of human interests and rights and a full consideration of what we can understand to be the rights other animals are natural holders of – by virtue of their self-autonomous existence in this world.

And to take this a step further: we probably want to interlock Animal and Human Rights, so that both reaffirm and solidify each other. How can this be reached? And how can this, even more so, be reached in our current human societies, where Animal Rights is not regarded as positively relevant for the “’own’ – collective human concern”.

One aspect that builds an euphemistically put “automatic” way to bind Animal- and Human Rights together, is, as simple as it may sound: the environment. Whereby ‘the environment’ can be a term for what the German poet-thinker Goethe more comprisingly called “das All-Leben”, the all-live – a term that hints at the interconnectedness of all life forms on earth and beyond.

The environment, nature, is the habitat of nonhuman animals and humans alike. It’s the sphere of living existence where both humans and nonhuman animals meet in their natural state of being, and it’s the very political ground ( that is: a sphere of life and thus of interests) that needs to be re-captured for the ethical side that is to it in regards to Animal Liberation and Animal Rights.

There are three core aspects that bind humans and animals together in their enviromentalistic and nature bound context:

A.) Existentially we got the shared ‘outer world’ on which life depends in its individual and collective existential value.

B.) The conflict between the (major) life forms is produced by ‘the culture’ in which life finds its contextualization, ranging from predominantly destructive in homocentric human societies and, environmentally seen, constructive in animal cultures and their form of relating to the natural.

C.) The solution, the bridge, lays in the will for re-establishing a natural balance, that encompasses its participants, the living beings, as co-creatant, co-existential “agents of an self-created contextualizing existence” – that can be understood as something that we emotionally would induce with “dignity”.

Dignity is the felt and the realizable foundation of Rights. Being co-existent in this world and acknowledging the agency of nonhuman animals in the environmental context is a basis that should tie Human- and Animal Rights constructively.

http://veganswines.com/andishe/on_homocentrism.htm

Sidetracks and main tracks

Why don’t the “lefties”, the democrats, the socialists or even the greens take up animal rights as a part of their political agenda? With animal rights meaning : animals are ends in themselves, and need their rights granted on this very basis. (Likewise to the Kantian premise of: “humans are ends in themselves”, and as thus holders of rights.)

Hunting seems to be “fashionable” for a lot of people, no matter if they tend towards the left or the right. We do have animal rights as a political issue up in the discussion in our society now, still this concern is not being embraced by any political fraction.

Does that indicate that where there is no interest in animal liberation, there in reality is also no real interest in a human liberation? Liberation from what you might ask. Well, from everything that is ethically questionable when we put ourselves in contexts with our environments, ie with nature and humans, context-wise.

However, what we do, is that we prefer to keep ourselves and the others sidetracked with an old fashioned style political demagoguism, garnished with real hardcore speciesism. We get subtle and very obvious forms of most of the socially ruinous -isms, for example, which overlay the catastrophic tragedy of our destruction of the nonhuman animal world and the natural environment, and which overlay the fact and that who don’t care at all about the natural world: morally!

We all share a common interest, it is assumed, in exploiting and degrading the world. And politics is little but a game of backgammon where you can just dice yours rounds. Nothing is gonna happen to us as “the people” statuswise. The moral circle shall always just include us (an assumption which is a philosophical fallacy) and we locked nature out.

I plan to talk about my concept of nature later.

In all the bad ways, the political merry-go-rounds of left and right that leave animal rights (AR) and environmental concerns out, are keep going back and forth on intrahuman concerns, conflict-mongering, and we can keep reassuring ourselves that everything apart from us doesn’t count …

Food ethics

veganism is veganism is veganism, perhaps

You get either those one who prioritize their self-concern by talking endlessly about health and yummy food  – instead of giving one basic useful info about how you can be creative eating and cooking with a staple diet consisting of fruit veggies and herbs and spices and legumes and grains.
Or, you get those ones who prioritize their self-concern by talking endlessly about why human rights really matter more that animal rights, and why we can’t expect people to change their “food choices” who live in hard contexts – instead of talking about where vegetarianism really came from: namely from cultures and peoples all over the world and history, who chose ethical and resposible diets.
Both types are mostly interested in how they can make their careers with veganism and get their money. In reality they see veganism as some political (hopefully) social fashion. Which it is though.

To sum it up: the plant based diet and the animal rights driven ethics of people create two major strands of opportunists currently, who put their homocenstist outlook for us as a nonplus ultra of veganism.

I don’t want to try to trash some people’s positive intents, I just think that an eagerness for one’s own “survival” grounded on using a morally and ethically weighty subject, will inevitably cause conflicts between the requirements of the subject dealt with, and the needs of steps that I ought to take in order to “reach something” (money, fame, and such) in the types of societies we live in today.

Perspectives on priorities

Not everything within the political realm works as stringently as one would like to have it. The same old question and we heard it many times is: what deserves to have the highest priority. In the past this would have been answered for most part that ‘their nation should come before anybody else’s matter’. Today though we know that the stories of places wherever in the world are interwoven, and we do know that human rights issues in one other place will surely affect us in the end of the day, at least in a form ‘our nation’ likes or dislikes – for the sake of their own interests.

Now finally we enter a third phase where – after we realized that ethnocentrism, racism and national chauvinism is bad for others and for us and that the problems other nations suffer will eventually likely cause instability to the other nation states – today we are confronted with a variation of the question about political priorities that touches the concerns of the environment and nonhuman animals.

Many would still understandably like to say: no we must first reach more goals in regards to humans rights and social justice, only then we can help animals and nature, BUT and that’s a big but:

is it really true that when you say “NO animals and nature need the same care just now and the same amount”, that you should pull your heard in and feel guilty cos you look like an ignorant bad ass towards human rights?

No you don’t have to be shy about that, because we need to have a look at how things are interrelated from the expanded point of view, where our newly discovered moral and ethical concerns really come into play and form a multitfocus.

***

The other side of the coin

Bertrand Russell made this wonderful observation about how the circle of ones selfishness expands, to finally grasp the entire universe:

‘Politeness is the practice of respecting that part of a man’s beliefs which is specially concerned with his own merits or those of his group. Every man, wherever he goes, is encompassed by a cloud of comforting convictions, which move with him like flies on a summer day. Some of these convictions are personal to himself: they tell him of his virtues and excellencies, the affection of his friends and the respect of his acquaintances, the rosy prospect of his career, and his unflagging energy in spite of delicate health. Next come convictions of the superior excellence of his family; how his father had that unbending rectitude which is now so rare, and brought up his children with a strictness beyond what is to be found among modern parents; how his sons are carrying all before them in school games, and his daughter is not the sort of girl to make an imprudent marriage. Then there are beliefs about his class, which according to his station, is the best socially, or the most intelligent, or the most deserving morally, of the classes in the community – though all are agreed that the first of these merits is more desirable than the second, and the second than the third. Concerning his nation, also, almost every man cherishes comfortable delusions, ‘Foreign nations, I am sorry to say, do as they do do.’ So said Mr Podsnap, giving expression, in these words, to one of the deepest sentiments of the human heart. Finally we come to the theories that exalt mankind in general, either absolutely or in comparison with the ‘brute creation’. Men have souls, though animals have not; Man is the ‘rational animal’; any peculiarly cruel or unnatural action is called ‘brutal’ or ‘bestial’ (although such actions are in fact distinctively human) (1); God made Man in His own image, and the welfare of Man is the ultimate purpose of the universe.’

(1) Compare Mark Twain’s Mysterious Stranger

( See just a few more interesting citations of noteworthy people on here: http://www.simorgh.de/thequest.html )

“After all we are all human” – yes, but we are all so different

“After all we are all human” – yes, but we are all so different, and I think we should rethink “our” humanistic values, about which we theoretically and practically learn at school first and later possibly at the universities.

THINKING doesn’t need hierarchies. Thinking is the innermost ability in any individual to make her/his own decisions. Schools and academia, such as both institutions function now, create hierarchies.

The only way you “learn” to think there. is to draw together that what others have already said, and to quote them and draw conclusions based on your findings. But you can never draw from any new thought, any new idea. You can’t just think by yourself and take other points of reference – observations that are new or different, and haven’t been written about yet – into full consideration.

Thinking is an individual process. The way you learn to reason in school though, is to make thinking a common and collective process. Also mind: a thought doesn’t even have to be intelligible, to be valuable and rich in meaning, for the thinker and her/his context.