What is a Visionist?

"A visionist is an artist, a creator or an individual that sees beyond what is visible to the eyes and brains of human beings. Visionists are thinkers, they are the recognisable brains in soociety, but most times they are seen as absurd, "nerds" and misfits – they just don't fit into the societies. They are people with great dreams and minds."

The English Wikipedia

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Finding the Zeitgeist

Zeitgeist. I am not sure I would have used another "high-brow" term to discuss what I am trying to achieve here, but after hearing Will-i-am of the Black Eyed Peas use it, I thought -- What the hell. It's a great term, and in truth, a visionist must be able to capture the "spirit of the times." You have to know where you are, to be thinking about where things are going and more importantly, where you want them to go. At some level, we are all trying to figure this out, to discover where in the world are we. We want to be in touch with reality, on top of things, going with the flow and want to be not only "in with the in crowd," but also moving ahead of the crowd because we already know where things are headed. This process begins already in high school, where kids wish to be cool, and ahead of others in matters of dress, music and style, so much that if strongly defines their identities, aspirations and relationships. You don't want to argue with a high school kid about his/her identity. This gets very tough when it comes to things like tattoos and body piercings.
I have always admired writers who seem to be good at this. Such futurologists as Alviin Toffler, who's Future Shock and subsequent books, made a big impact on me, or writers like Tom Wolfe, whose hip writing style and even hipper sartorial tastes for me defined the 1960s. Such an aspiration assumes that there is such a thing as "the times" or eras, or generations and if so that they can be defined as having a spirit. Such an assumption, I believe is no less an act of faith as is religious belief. But it seems almost inescapable.

In any event, it is my hope that in this blog I can help to both find and define the zeitgeist of this age we live in. Globalization I believe largely sums it up. We often use the term "Information Age" to describe our historic era. I was fond of post-modernism for a long time, and it was very popular in intellectual circles in Brazil when I lived there in the '80s, though some of my academic friends who took postmodernism for a ride, now say that it is somewhat out of style. I just want to know something: what ever happened to the Age of Aquarius anyway? And, oh yes, this posting is not in any way, shape or form an endorsement for the online film Zeitgeist, which I think is a bunch of bunkum.

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