Greetings, dear traveler.
I hope this newsletter finds your well and lifts up your day. I wrote during the full moon to share with you some thoughts on the current zeitgeist, or the spirit of the times, and also invite you to join me in a new time studies group that will be starting at the next new moon, January 21/Resonant 12.
It's so important to recognize the role that culture plays in shaping our understanding of time and the present moment. Each culture has its own unique zeitgeber, or external cues that help to regulate our internal sense of time. For example, in Western culture, the daily routine of work and school, the use of calendars and clocks, and marking of holidays and anniversaries all serve as zeitgebers.
But the current zeitgeist is not just shaped by our culture; it is also influenced by the rapidly changing world around us. The COVID-19 pandemic, for example, has had a profound impact on our sense of temporality, as the disruption of our normal routines and the uncertainty of the future have made it difficult to feel grounded in the present.
In addition to the cultural and historical contexts that shape our understanding of time, it is also important to consider the role of natural and cyclical time in our lives. Natural time refers to the rhythms and patterns of the natural world, such as the cycles of the seasons, the phases of the moon, and the daily cycle of night and day. These natural rhythms can have a powerful influence on our physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being, and can provide a sense of connection to the natural world and a deeper understanding of our place within it.
Cyclical time, on the other hand, refers to the repetition of patterns or events over a period of time. This can include cyclical patterns within nature, such as the cycles of growth and decay in ecosystems, as well as cyclical patterns within human societies, such as the repetition of historical events or the cycles of economic booms and busts. Understanding these cyclical patterns can provide insight into the underlying forces at work in the world and help us to make sense of the present moment.
Despite these challenges, I believe that there is great value in exploring the concept of temporality and the many ways that it shapes our lives. That's why I am starting a time studies group, and I would love for you to join me.
The group will meet once every month or moon to discuss topics related to time and temporality, including the cultural and historical contexts that shape our understanding of time, the ways that technology has impacted our relationship with time, and the role of time in shaping our personal and collective experiences.
In the time studies group, we will be exploring also the various ways that natural and cyclical time shape our lives and our understanding of the world, and how we can attune ourselves to these rhythms and patterns in order to live more harmoniously with the natural world and with each other.
Here I am using the Gregorian Calendar and the 13 Moon Calendar of 28 Days as reference of zeitgebers. I know for a while it can be confusing to see days in both formats, but consider as part of our experiment to decenter our relationship with time. You can download the app circa lunar that I helped to fund to convert other dates.
Starting today, I'm intending to take the time to write to you as a ritual when is a Full Moon: January 6/Rhythmic 25, February 5/Resonant 27, March 7/Solar 1, April 6/Planetary 3, May 5/Spectral 4, June 3/Crystal 5, July 3/Cosmic 7, August 1/Magnetic 7, August 30/Lunar 8, September 29/Electric 10, October 28/Self-Existing 11, November 27/Overtone 13, December 26/Rhythmic 14 and so on. My messages should be on your email around these days.
We will meet online when is a New Moon: January 21/Resonant 12, February 20/Galactic 14, March 21/Solar 15, April 20/Planetary 17, May 19/Spectral 18, June 18/Crystal 20, July 17/Cosmic 21, August 16/Magnetic 22, September 14/Lunar 23, October 14/Electric 25, November 13/Self-Existing 27, December 12/Overtone 28.
The meetings are going to be hosted in English to welcome a community coming from different places and backgrounds around the world. The meetings will always be based on a short piece of content – for example from a book, a movie, or a podcast – informed in advance. It is possible to participate of one or all the meetings.
On the first meeting, we will read, reflect and discuss together based on 'What Is The Contemporary?' by Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben, providing the opportunity for an introduction to participants of every level of the time studies group.
I hope you will consider joining me in this exciting new venture. If you are interested in learning more or signing up, please don't hesitate to reach out.
For now, stay with some of the main ideas and reflections I kept close to my mind and heart during my years of research and I find meaningful to share with you to (re)start this cycle.
How to Postpone the End of the World
There are a variety of cultural perspectives on the end of the world. Many cultures and belief systems have traditional stories and prophecies about it, such as the Hindu concept of the Kali Yuga or the Maya calendar's prediction of the end of the current world age. These cultural narratives often involve complex cosmologies and metaphysical beliefs that I would love to discuss all of them in detail.
As said by the great leader and philosopher Ailton Krenak, from the Krenak people in Brazil, in one of his lectures that now are available in books:
Our time is specialized in creating absences: the meaning of living in society, the very meaning of life experience. This generates a very big intolerance towards those who are still able to experience the pleasure of being alive, of dancing, of singing. And it's full of small constellations of people around the world who dance, sing, make it rain. The type of zombie humanity that we are being summoned to integrate does not tolerate so much pleasure, so much enjoyment of life. So, they preach the end of the world as a possibility to make us give up on our own dreams. And my provocation about postponing the end of the world is always being able to tell one more story. If we can do that, we are postponing the end. It is important to live the experience of our own movement around the world, not as a metaphor, but as friction, being able to count on each other.
– Ailton Krenak
From a decolonial perspective, the end of the world might be understood as the end of systems of oppression and exploitation that have harmed marginalized communities for centuries. This could involve the dismantling of systems of colonialism, racism, patriarchy, and other forms of domination, and the creation of a more equitable and just world for all people. Decolonization is a complex and ongoing process that involves both individual and collective actions, and can be approached in a variety of ways.
There are many things that individuals and communities can do to work towards a more equitable and sustainable future, including supporting social and political movements, engaging in personal and collective self-reflection and learning, and taking action to reduce one's own impact on the planet with the understanding that the big players need to adopt a regenerative approach if we want to be here as a species in the long term. While it is not possible to prevent the eventual end of the current world, it is possible to work towards creating a better future for everyone, humans and non humans.
Mundus is one of the Latin words for world that refers to the totality of entities, to the whole of reality or to everything that is. And our own understanding of what is the whole changes according to perspective and to how deep or far we can see. World can refer to the Earth with its inhabitants, humans, non humans, and all things upon it. But our understanding of what is 'the whole' changes according to our perspective. Someone can say that one's life is one's world. We are part of the answer.
To say the word 'world' in English is a tongue twister for any Brazilian... My hometown, family and friends once were my whole world. When I started to travel with my work through Brazil I expanded my world to the borders of my continental country of origin, influenced by my mother tongue as well. But I knew I was influenced as well by many other distant worlds. Worlds shaped by other cultures and languages not only within my own country but also in other countries and continents around the planet that I didn't have experienced yet. I understood early to relate my understanding of the world with the unknown unknowns. To use the uncertainties as opportunities to expand the horizons of my world.
“…there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns — the ones we don’t know we don’t know.”
– Donald Rumsfeld
The concept of unknown unknowns can be challenging, as it reminds us of the limitations of our own knowledge and understanding. However, it can also be a useful way to approach situations with humility and openness, and to be prepared for the unexpected.
A vista is a view or perspective, often of a wide and expansive nature. It can refer to a literal view, such as the panoramic view from a mountain top, or it can be used metaphorically to describe a mental or emotional perspective. A worldview is a person's overarching perspective on the world and their place in it. It is shaped by their values, beliefs, experiences, and cultural context, and it influences their understanding of the world and their actions within it. A worldview is often implicit and unconscious, but it shapes how a person interprets and makes sense of the world around them. In short, a vista is a specific view or perspective, while a worldview is a more comprehensive and deeply held perspective that shapes a person's understanding of the world.
Being aware of one's own personal vista, or perspective, is important in any situation, but it is particularly relevant in times of political polarization. We've been facing times with the increasing of the division and hostility between different political groups or ideologies, and it is a significant issue in many countries around the world.
One of the key drivers of political polarization is the tendency for people to surround themselves with like-minded individuals and to consume media that reinforces their preexisting beliefs and values. This can create an echo chamber effect, in which people are exposed to a narrow range of viewpoints and become more entrenched in their beliefs. By being aware of one's own personal vista and actively seeking out diverse perspectives, it is possible to broaden one's understanding of the world and to develop a more nuanced and informed worldview. This can help to reduce the risk of becoming entrenched in a particular perspective and can foster a greater sense of empathy and understanding towards others with different viewpoints.
In times of political polarization and fake news, it is more important than ever to be aware of one's own personal vista and to actively seek out diverse perspectives. By doing so, we can work towards a more inclusive and compassionate society. It is important to keep seeing the big picture because it helps us to understand the broader context and implications of our actions and decisions. By considering the long-term consequences and the interconnectedness of various issues and systems, we can make more informed and thoughtful choices that take into account the needs and well-being of both ourselves and others.
Keeping the big picture in mind can also help us to stay motivated and focused, as it allows us to see the meaning and purpose behind our work and to understand how it fits into the larger scheme of time. It can also help us to remain open and flexible, as it allows us to see beyond our immediate circumstances and to consider new perspectives and possibilities.
When I saw the news about how Finland is fighting against fake news with Media Literacy I got so happy to have started to talk about it years ago with my students, partners and clients. Media literacy is the ability to critically evaluate and analyze media messages and to understand the role that media plays in society. It is an important skill in today's world, as we are constantly bombarded with information and messages from a variety of sources.
Being media literate is important because it helps us to make informed decisions about the media we consume and to understand the potential biases and agendas of the sources we encounter. It also allows us to recognize the role that media plays in shaping our understanding of the world and our own identities.
Media literacy is particularly important in the age of fake news and misinformation, as it helps us to critically evaluate the credibility and accuracy of the information we encounter. By being media literate, we can become more discerning consumers of media and be better equipped to navigate the complex and often confusing landscape of information that surrounds us.
But we should not stop there.
Racial literacy is the ability to understand and critically analyze issues of race and racism in society. It involves not only knowledge of the historical and cultural contexts that shape our understanding of race, but also the skills to recognize and challenge systems of oppression and to work towards a more equitable and inclusive society.
Racial literacy is so important because race and racism continue to be significant sources of inequality and injustice in many societies. By being racially literate, individuals and communities can better understand the ways in which race intersects with other forms of identity and how it shapes the experiences and opportunities of people of different races. This understanding can then inform actions towards creating a more just and equitable society.
Ecological literacy is the ability to understand and appreciate the interconnectedness of living systems and the ways in which human actions impact the natural world. It involves not only knowledge of the principles of ecology, but also the skills to recognize and address environmental challenges and to work towards a more sustainable and regenerative future. One aspect of ecological literacy is the understanding and practice of regenerative practices. These are practices that aim to restore and enhance the health and resilience of natural systems, rather than simply extracting resources or mitigating negative impacts.
Regenerative practices are important because they can help to repair the damage that has been done to the natural world and to build resilience against future challenges, such as climate change. Examples of regenerative practices include sustainable agriculture, reforestation, and natural resource management techniques that aim to mimic the patterns and processes of natural systems. By adopting regenerative practices, we can work towards a future in which humans and the natural world can thrive in harmony. Ecological literacy is crucial for understanding the importance of these practices and for working towards a more sustainable and regenerative future.
Temporal literacy, on the other hand, is the ability to understand and analyze the ways in which time and temporality shape our lives and our understanding of the world. It involves recognizing the cultural, historical, and natural contexts that shape our perception of time, and the ways in which these contexts influence our actions and decisions. Temporal literacy is important because our understanding of time shapes the way we think about the past, present, and future, and can have a profound impact on how we approach challenges and opportunities. By being temporally literate, we can better understand the complex interplay of time and history, and how it shapes our lives and the world around us. This understanding can help us to make more informed and thoughtful choices about how to use our time and to work towards a better future for ourselves and for others.
The word 'solar' is also really present around me nowadays and it comes from another Latin word, 'solaris', which means "of the sun." This reflects the fact that the sun is the primary source of energy for our planet and the solar system as a whole. Our local star we call sol or sun is at the center of our solar system, and its energy is what allows life to thrive on Earth.
Your know our planet, along with the other planets in the solar system, orbits around the sun and is held in place by its gravitational pull. We are part of a solar system made up of the sun, the planets, and their moons, as well as a variety of smaller celestial bodies such as asteroids and comets. And, since I'm going towards help to build the big picture here, all of these objects are part of a larger system known as the Milky Way galaxy, which is made up of billions of stars and their planets.
Understanding the place of our planet within the solar system helps us to contextualize our own place in the larger universe and to recognize the interconnections between all the celestial bodies within it. It also reminds us of the importance of the sun and its energy in our lives and the need to care for and preserve the natural systems that support us.
It is important for humanity to envision solar futures because the use of solar energy has the potential to greatly reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and mitigate the negative impacts of climate change. Solar energy is a renewable resource that is abundant and widely available, and the technology to harness it is continually improving.
There are many exciting examples of the use of solar energy in different fields, including in the built environment, transportation, and energy storage. For example, solar panels can be installed on buildings to generate electricity, and solar-powered homes and communities are becoming increasingly common. Solar-powered vehicles and public transportation systems are also being developed, and there are numerous examples of solar-powered infrastructure projects, such as solar roads and solar-powered water pumps.
The solar punk movement is a cultural and artistic movement that envisions a future in which solar technology and sustainable design are widespread and integral to daily life. Solar punk works often depict a world in which people live in harmony with the natural environment and use solar energy and other clean technologies to power their lives. This movement promotes a positive and hopeful vision of the future, and encourages people to imagine and work towards a more sustainable and equitable world.
Envisioning solar futures and exploring the possibilities of solar technology is another important step towards creating a more sustainable and equitable world. By considering the potential of solar energy and other clean technologies, we can begin to imagine and work towards a brighter and more hopeful future for all.
The temporal field of research and studies is what I've been dedicating my work and life to frame all the topics mentiones above through the study of time and temporality and the ways in which they shape our lives and the world around us. Time and temporality are fundamental aspects of the human experience and are deeply intertwined with a wide range of other fields, including history, sociology, psychology, and philosophy. By understanding the ways in which time shapes our understanding of the world, we can gain a deeper understanding of ourselves and the world around us.
The research of time and temporality has practical applications in a variety of fields. For example, understanding the ways in which people perceive and experience time can inform the design of systems and technologies, such as calendars, clocks, and scheduling systems. Similarly, understanding the role of time in shaping social and cultural processes can inform policy and decision-making in fields such as education, health care, and business. Overall, this field is an important and multifaceted, helping us to understand the complexities of time and its role in shaping our lives and the world around us.
To research and study time and temporality can help us to better consider the long-term consequences of our actions and to make more informed and thoughtful choices about how to use our time and resources. By understanding the ways in which time shapes our lives and the world around us, we can work towards a more sustainable and equitable future I've been writing all along.
There are many different temporalities that can be researched and studied, and the specific focus will depend on the goals and interests of everyone. Here are a few examples:
Deep temporality: this refers to the study of deep time as a concept that refers to the vast expanse of time that has passed since the formation of the Earth and the universe. It is often contrasted with the more limited and human-centric concept of "historical time," which refers to the time frame of recorded human history. This can include the study of the history of life on Earth, the evolution of species, and the processes that have shaped the Earth's landscapes and climate.
Historical temporality: this refers to the study of the past and how it shapes the present and future. This can include the study of specific historical events or periods, as well as the ways in which history is constructed and remembered.
Cultural temporality: this refers to the study of the ways in which time is understood and experienced within different cultures and societies. This can include the study of cultural calendars, holidays, and rituals, as well as the ways in which time is used to organize social and political systems.
Personal temporality: this refers to the study of the ways in which individuals perceive and experience time. This can include the study of how people's experiences of time change over their lifetime and the ways in which individual experiences of time are shaped by cultural, social, and personal factors.
Decolonial temporality: this refers to the study of time from a decolonial perspective, which seeks to challenge and dismantle systems of oppression and exploitation. This can include the study of how colonial powers have imposed their own temporal frameworks on colonized societies and the ways in which decolonial movements have reclaimed and reframed their own
This is my personal approach and research, that I call Spiral Temporality. It is a concept that emphasizes the idea that time is not a linear progression, but rather a cyclical process in which events and experiences repeat and build upon themselves. This concept is based on the idea that history tends to repeat itself and that the present is shaped by both the past and the future.
There are several principles that define spiral temporality. The first is that history is not linear, but rather a series of cycles. This means that the same events and patterns tend to repeat themselves over time, and that the present is shaped by both the past and the future.
Another principle of spiral temporality is that the past and present are interconnected. This means that the events of the past continue to influence the present, and that the choices we make in the present have an impact on the future.
A third principle is that the future is shaped by both the past and the present. This means that the events and experiences of the past have a lasting influence on the future, and that the choices we make in the present can shape the direction of the future.
A fourth principle is that the present is a point of convergence for the past, present, and future. This means that the present is a moment of transition between the past and the future, and that it is shaped by both.
Overall, the concept of spiral temporality suggests that time is a dynamic and cyclical process, and that the past, present, and future are interconnected and interdependent. This concept can be useful in understanding how historical events and patterns repeat themselves, and in considering the long-term consequences of our actions in the present.
If you know me for a while you also know that from the beginning I called this project on temporality by the codename 'Torus'. In short, a torus is a donut-shaped geometric shape that has a variety of uses in mathematics, physics, and other fields. Such shape is formed by rotating a circle around an axis that is perpendicular to the plane of the circle. It has the shape of a donut, with a circular hole in the center. Tori are important in mathematics and physics, as they can be used to model a variety of phenomena, including fluid flow, magnetic fields, and the structure of the universe. Tori are also used in computer graphics, engineering, and in other fields that are not my focus to explain without digressing too much right now.
There are several ways in which a torus geometry can help to explain spiral temporality in spacetime.
A torus is a three-dimensional shape that is shaped like a donut, with a hole in the center. This shape can be thought of as representing the cyclical nature of time, with the hole in the center representing the present moment.
The shape of a torus suggests that time is a continuous loop, with events and experiences repeating themselves over time. This is consistent with the idea of spiral temporality, which emphasizes the idea that history tends to repeat itself – or to rhyme – and that the present is shaped by both the past and the future.
A torus geometry can also help to explain how the past and present are interconnected. In a torus, every point on the surface is connected to every other point, suggesting that events and experiences in the past continue to influence the present, and that the choices we make in the present have an impact on the future.
I am really visual during my process of research, study and teaching. Overall, the shape of a torus can help to illustrate the concept of spiral temporality by suggesting that time is a cyclical process, with events and experiences repeating themselves and the past, present, and future interconnected and interdependent.
But why that is relevant?
The concept of spiral temporality can be relevant to the current global zeitgeist in several ways.
First, the idea that history tends to repeat itself and that the present is shaped by both the past and the future can be useful in understanding current events and trends. For example, the current global political climate may be influenced by events and patterns from the past, and the choices made in the present may have long-term consequences for the future.
Second, the concept of spiral temporality can also be relevant in considering the interconnections and interdependencies between different societies and cultures. For example, the actions of one country or group may have an impact on the future of other countries or groups, and understanding these interconnections can be important in making informed decisions.
Third, the idea of a cyclical and dynamic process of time can also be relevant in considering the long-term consequences of our actions and decisions. By recognizing that the present is a moment of transition between the past and the future, and that our choices have an impact on the direction of the future, we can be more mindful of the impact that we have on the world around us.
Overall, the concept of spiral temporality can be relevant to the current global zeitgeist by providing a framework for understanding the complex and interconnected nature of time, history, and society, and by encouraging a sense of responsibility and mindfulness in our actions and decisions.
Change the zeitgeber, change the zeitgeist
More than understanding, I believe we can improve the current zeitgeist at both the global and local levels based on the concept of spiral temporality:
- Understand the past: In order to understand the present and shape the future, it is important to have a good understanding of the events and patterns of the past. This can involve studying history, cultural traditions, and the experiences of different groups and societies.
- Consider the long-term consequences of actions and decisions: By recognizing that the present is a moment of transition between the past and the future, and that our choices have an impact on the direction of the future, we can be more mindful of the long-term consequences of our actions and decisions.
- Foster intercultural understanding and cooperation: Recognizing the interconnected and interdependent nature of different societies and cultures can help to foster greater understanding and cooperation between different groups. This can involve initiatives such as cultural exchange programs, education initiatives, and international collaboration.
- Encourage personal and collective responsibility: By understanding the impact that our actions and decisions have on the world around us, we can be more mindful of our personal and collective responsibilities to contribute to a better future. This can involve individual actions such as reducing our environmental impact and engaging in acts of kindness, as well as collective efforts such as supporting social and environmental causes and participating in civic life.
- Embrace change and adaptability: Recognizing that time is a dynamic and cyclical process can help us to embrace change and adapt to new situations. This can involve being open to new ideas, learning from past mistakes, and being willing to adapt and evolve in response to changing circumstances.
Art, Science and Spirituality
I believe the study and practice of spiral temporality is directly related to art, science, and spirituality in several ways, and finding common ground between these fields is of great importance for understanding the complexity and interconnectedness of the world.
In art, the concept of spiral temporality can be seen in the way that art reflects and influences the culture and society in which it is created. For example, the art of a particular time period may reflect the values and concerns of that society, and in turn, the art of a particular time period may have an impact on the culture and society of the future.
In science, the concept of spiral temporality can be seen in the way that scientific discoveries build upon and expand upon previous knowledge, and in the way that scientific theories and models are constantly being tested and revised. Science also recognizes the interconnectedness of different fields, and the importance of considering the long-term consequences of actions and decisions.
In spirituality, the concept of spiral temporality can be seen in the way that spiritual traditions often view time as a cyclical process, with events and experiences repeating themselves and the past, present, and future interconnected and interdependent. Spirituality also emphasizes the importance of understanding the interconnectedness of all things, and the impact that our actions and decisions have on the world around us.
Overall, finding common ground between art, science, and spirituality can help to deepen our understanding of the complexity and interconnectedness of the world, and can encourage a sense of responsibility and mindfulness in our actions and decisions.
Education on Temporality
At this point I am working on presenting to business leaders and decision makers to invest in education on temporality. I don't see that as a project, but as a life's work I dedicate my own temporality to it. If you believe you can help me in any way, putting me in contact with companies and institutions that I can partner with I will be glad to use the help.
I am truly grateful for the opportunity to work in this field and share my passion for time and temporality with others. It is truly rewarding to see the impact that this concept can have on individuals and organizations, and I am committed to continuing to learn and grow in this area. Thank you for your support and belief in the value of this work, my work.
We are the time travelers we've been waiting for.
– Writen during the full moon of January 6, 2023 / NS1.35 Rhythmic 25.