The Science of the Political

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ARPINSCHI Anton Carpinschi, Professor of Political Philosophy at the Faculty of Philosophy,

“Alexandru Ioan Cuza”

University of Iaşi.

Author of: Contemporary Political Doctrines. A Typological Synthesis (1991); Current Ideological Orientations.

Trends and Meanings (1991); Contemporary Political Doctrines.

Typologies, Dynamics, Perspectives (1992);

Openness and Meaning in Political Thinking (1995);

The Science of the Political. A Treatise (co- authored by C.

Bocancea, 1998).

















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Abstract:The aim of our study is to single out a possible path towards the recognition culture in a world strained by deep social cleavages and by a strong conflict among values. In this context, we consider that a recognition culture is possible only by activating the comprehensive being that each of us, humans, is. The study attempts to answer the desideratum of the recognition culture by developing a model of the political founded on the correlation of certain aspects of the human and of the political. The identification of the hypostases of the political and the human and the correlations between them help us understand one of the specific anthropo-political mechanisms that may allow us to reach the recognition culture that is based on accepting the other and assuming one’s own fallibility. This is what we define as the anthropological model of the comprehensive political.

Globalization, multiculturalism, recrudescence of identity movements, as well as other current social, political, economic, cultural, and religious processes require comprehensive analyses able to generate reasonable suggestions and realistic solutions. There is a need for research capable of nuanced interpretations, proper adaptation, and

feasible recommendations regarding the dynamics between identity and alterity, unity and diversity, inovation and tradition etc., within the scope of deliberative and participatory democracy and of the recognition culture.

Key Words:

recognition, comprehension, comprehensive being, recognition culture, the hypostatic triad of the human, the hypostatic triad of the political.

In this context, being aware of the terapeutic importance of the recognition culture, we first wonder if such a cultural model is even possible nowadays, in a world strained by deep social cleavages and a strong conflict between values. In our opinion, the synthetic and multidimensional concept of “the culture of recognition” brings together the resources and the requirements for a research project and for an education program for the future, as it gives to current debates valences of comprehension and dialogue, which are so necessary for our survival as humans and as species in this world of postmodern challenges. Therefore, this study attempts to sketch a possible path towards the recognition culture.

This way can certainly be projected from different perspectives. We assume that the politically engaged human factor is one of the important vectors of the recognition culture and suggest an operational model of the


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

inter conditionings between the human and the political. The definition of and the movement towards the willingly embraced practice of tolerance, recognition, and dialogue in an organized social frame depend to a great extent on education and the quality of the assumed policies. It is not by chance that we have dedicated this study to the hypostases of the human and the political. The identification of the hypostases of the political and the human and the reading of their correlations help us understand one of the specific anthropo-political mechanisms that may allow us to reach the recognition culture, that is based on the acceptance of the other and the assuming of one’s own fallibility.

Of course, our suggested way towards the recognition culture has certain stages. After we have made sure that a recognition culture is impossible in the absence of a recognition politics, in the first stage we state our concern in an ontological-anthropological context and to state our research thesis and hypotheses. In the second stage we shape a human model, that of the fallible man, from a double perspective: theological and anthropo-philosophical. In the third stage we develop the anthropological model of fallibility by correlating the hypostases of the human and of the political. As naturally consequent in the logics of the argument, in the fourth, fifth, and sixth stages we go into the details of each of the three hypostases of the human and the political that, due to their intrinsic dynamics, engage the “engine” of the fallible man towards the recognition culture. Finally, in the seventh stage we unravel the recognition culture as a cultural synthesis of the full-grown mankind, the open society of the fallible humans who are capable of social learning.

I. A recognition culture is impossible in the absence of a

“recognition politics”

Used in various scientific contexts – empirical and normative, diachronic and synchronic, structural-functionalistic and systemic, etc. – the concept of culture induces different meanings. Thus, we hear of “high culture” and “mass culture”, “refined culture” and “average culture”,

“television culture” or, more recently, “internet culture”; “urban culture”

and “neighborhood subculture”, “popular culture”, “peasant culture”, political, economic, theological, classic, modern, etc. culture. Fragmented and confusing at a first glance, this list raises a series of questions as well as the issue of necessary delineations. Of course, over time there have been countless attempts to define the term “culture”. During the eighteenth century the Enlightenment meaning was highlighted and culture referred to the “education of the soul” by sending children to school. Later, during the century of the positivism culture, it was defined as a social reality, making way for ethnological researches on culture perceived as a “people’s way o living”, inherited through learning. Unfortunately, ethnic, nationalist, and racist skidding occurred, inspiring the fundamentalist and


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

segregationist policies of the twentieth century. What about the culture of the twenty first century? How could this become one of the identity recognition and of the right to differ in the context of globalization and interference between cultural models?

One answer to be used for formulating our point of view is that a recognition culture is impossible without what Charles Taylor called the

“recognition politics”1. The subsequent questions refer to the content and to the operationalization of this concept. How can we design and apply the recognition politics? Which analytic model of the human, society, and politics can be the basis for our design and construction of the recognition politics and the recognition culture respectively? What does recognition mean? What are the meanings of this promising, yet ambiguous, word?

What values and requirements does a recognition culture imply?

Therefore, we need to define the concepts and the relations among them, as well as the thesis and the hypotheses central to the entire study.

In this context, our thesis runs, a recognition culture is possible only by activating the comprehensive being that each of us, humans, is. As a special life form through the conscious participation into being, the human being is, despite its contingent existence yet because of this very participation, a comprehensive being, a self-conscious entity. It is also an entity conscious of the world it lives in by understanding the meaning of the being and the occurrences of the existence. We consider that the activation of the comprehensive being implies the activation of the mechanisms of recuperatory-recognition, empathetic-transposition, and anticipatory- imagination. Thus, through continuous cognitive-affective-volitional practice, it implies the induction of comprehensive truths and policies. The complementary and comprehensive truths and policies are essential instruments to the recognition culture because they assume recognition as a subjacent experience that can inspire and shape the mental processes through which we know the world, the positive and negative feelings of relating to the world, the decision-making ability, and the will to act.

Having the above-mentioned thesis as a starting point, the study attempts to answer the desideratum of the recognition culture by developing a model of the political founded on the correlation of certain aspects of the human and of the political. This is what we designate as the anthropological model of the comprehensive political. It is a model2 because it occurs as a more or less schematic, natural, and understandable depiction and representation of the political universe, designed in an operational, systematic way, through words and phrases logically articulated into explanatory-interpretative-prospective reasoning. It is an anthropological model because it relies on a certain shaping of the human, one of the aspects of the actual human engaged in the daily praxis. It is an anthropological model of the comprehensive political because it is a reconstruction of the political as understood and experienced by each of us as comprehensive beings. So, the aspects of the comprehensive being


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

engaged in the political organizing of his/her community have inspired our anthropological model of the comprehensive political.

Derived from the Greek word hypostasis3 meaning the act of placing itself underneath, support, basis, the term “hypostasis” refers in our study to a distinctive state of the human being that determines a certain way of being. During his existence, the human being manifests itself through specific behaviors and conducts. During our contingent existence, each of us is a comprehensive being in which the bio-genetic nature, the moral- spiritual condition, the practical essence are experienced states, intermingling and inter-conditioning hypostases. The nature, the condition, and the essence are the states which constitute the basis of the corresponding behaviors and conducts: the intelligence of surviving in a continuous selective competition, the forming aspiration to spiritual values, the human essence publicly engaged. We are and we permanently manifest ourselves through this dynamic hypostatic triad in which nature, condition, and essence act as true “tectonic plates” of the human, whose continuous movements and clashes maintain the dramatic connections and the frail balance characteristic to us, as fallible humans.

As distinctive existential realities, the bio-genetic nature of the individual and the spiritual (moral) condition of the person confront and complement each other into the essence of the citizen engaged in praxis;

therefore, each constitutes a hypostasis of the human being. As part of nature, the human aspires to the spiritual fulfillment of his human condition and unravels his essence in action. In our opinion, humans are comprehensive beings, capable of communicating and thorough understanding through recognition, transposition, and anticipation, because they are special entities resulting from the dynamics of their defining hypostases: an individual at the level of their bio-genetic nature, a person from the spiritual condition perspective, a citizen by expressing their political essence and engagement in the public sphere. The possibilities of the human nature, transposed at the altitude of the human condition, find their ends through the action of the human essence. As genetically intrinsic, the intelligence of the “human phenomenon”4 is projected at the level of values and fulfilled in praxis.

We attempt to reconstruct a comprehensive model of the political by correlating the hypostases of the human to certain hypostases of the political, which we name: the proto-political, the meta-political, and the political praxis. In other words, we try to reconstruct the political as understood by each of us as comprehensive beings. In the management of the common good through the legitimate possession of the sovereign power, on his way to the recognition culture, the politically engaged comprehensive being, makes use of both the natural needs and of the possibilities of the proto-political, as well as of the constructive reflexivity of the meta-political.


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

Through the dynamics of his hypostases, the comprehensive being of the human fulfills his meaning and, thus, his fate in a recognition culture.

The fact that, in the stream of being, humans sense the significance of their being proves the need for returning to the explicit ways to being, through guiding thematic interrogations of the comprehensive being. Such a way is configured in this study, in which each of us, as comprehensive beings, by reconstructing an anthropological model of the comprehensive political, realizes his/her fallibility in the world and aspires to a recognition culture.

In this onto-anthropological context, our hypotheses are: 1) As comprehensive beings searching for the sense of their existence in the world, humans take on a way of recognition and comprehension. 2) On his way to recognition and comprehension the human is the fallible human, actual being, imperfect yet perfectible, who needs comprehension and recognition and who is capable, after prolonged searching, of performing them. 3) From a theological perspective, the anthropologic model of fallibility depends on the existential duality of the divine and the human assumed through recognition by the Christian revolution and, from an anthropo-philosophical perspective, on the dynamics of the hypostases of the human. 4) The hypostases of the human favor the creation of certain ways of being of the political. Constructed through the correlation of the hypostases of the human and the ways of being of the political, the anthropological model of the comprehensive political is an interpretative- prospective model and, as such, a possible strategy for a recognition culture.

5) The development of the anthropological model of the comprehensive political implies a direct approach through an existential exercise, as well as an onto-theological openness apprehensive of enlightenment and revelation because, according to Saint Thomas of Aquinas, “nothing stops that the same things, treated of by the philosophical disciplines to the extent that they can be known through the light of natural reason, be treated of by another science as they are known through the light of divine revelation”.5

II. The fallible man, a privileged being on the way to recognition and comprehension

The recognition-comprehension continuum

Aware of his own fallibility, the comprehensive being exercises his understanding ability through the recognition of his limitations. However, simultaneously, the comprehensive being is capable of yet another type of recognition, the ultimate-recognition, the recognition of the infallibility of the being-as-such. We observe that the binomial recognition- comprehension bestows a double direction on its terms: from recognition to comprehension, a path of knowledge in the natural light of reason; here, recognition is way to reach comprehension, deep, and thorough understanding of things. But recognition can be experienced as an end of the way back of the comprehension to the recognition, when, understanding


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

and eventually accepting the limitation of the human being, we reach the recognition of the being-as-such, in its simplicity and universality of its pure act of-being (ipsum esse). Then, after reaching the rational limitations of comprehension, through the revelation experienced by the fallible man who has faith, the onto-theological openness can occur, the recognition of God as the name of He-Who-Is, because “the quiddity of God is the very act of existing”6.

On the way from recognition to comprehension, using recognition as a means, human beings become able to better understand things in their diversity. In other words, comprehension is a thorough and explicit understanding because it recognizes the real things. Operating in a cognitive manner at the level of extensional recognition, a recognition–

through the cognitive processes of memory and imagination – of the extensional being, of the being transposed – through multiplication and spatiotemporal diversification, as well as through its historical making – into the great number and diversity of the existing things and phenomena.

From an extensional perspective, recognition has a cognitive meaning regarding the transmission, the reception, and the growth of the size and quality of information, as well as of the volume of knowledge. Extensional recognition through the intervention of memory identifies the object of a real representation with a previously perceived object. The corroboration of perception and memory produces a better examination and understanding of reality. That is, in this informative and neuter meaning, the recognition as such, without axiological connotations, of a person or of some places; the recognition of the itinerary before the official race; the military action of recognizing the field; the proper recognition of a book as an object; or the recognition of a headline, a text, a song, etc. Extensional recognition is a recuperatory mental process through which we identify and better understand existing things and phenomena.

Starting from the extensional recognition – a recognition of the diversity of the things and phenomena in their actual and present being – the human being goes along the way of comprehension through an empathetic transposition into the situation, understands the other, and anticipates future situations. Along this way, in the light of natural reason, at the maximum level of its explanatory-interpretative capacity, comprehension becomes the recognition of the being as such, of the being in his intensionality and universality, comprising and synthesizing all the acts of- being, all those-who-are, and all those-who-were, but also all those who- will-be. In our opinion, this is the intensional recognition specific to the human being who is a comprehensive being precisely because he became capable of deeply understanding the being as such and of explaining the being as intesionality, the being as pure act of-being, infinite and a-historical.

The recognition of the being in his intensionality is an ontological recognition different from the extensional one that is gnoseological.


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

On the reverse way, of understanding the recognition as an end of the natural way of reasoning, confronted with the abyss of the being and the divine mystery of the ex nihilo creation, the comprehensive being of the human reaches the rational limits of its explanatory-interpretative- anticipatory power. Under these circumstances, the comprehensive being may benefit from an additional resource: intuition, its revelation and the belief in it, experienced as recognition of the supernatural, divine nature of the being-as-such mystery, a willingly assumed sacred and divine. Exhausting its rational-comprehensive resources, the fallible man faces the infallible being-as-such, which he recognizes as such, and, in order to address it and adhere to it, he calls it God, the Absolute Person. We call onto-theological recognition such a composite form of the intensional recognition acquired at the end of the comprehensive reason. But there is also the direct recognition of God through the gift of believing, recognition outside the rational- comprehensive endeavor that is offered exclusively by prayer and faith.

The dimensions of recognition and the openness of comprehensive being

Of what we have stated so far, we note that the comprehensive being is capable of recognizing different ranges and dimensions: extensional- gnoseological, intensional-ontological, intensional-onto-theological. To these we may add the direct recognition through the faith in God. We refer to extensional-gnoseological recognition at the level of common knowledge and of scientific reasoning about the world of existing objects and phenomena. Ontological recognition occurs at the end of the comprehensive being’s efforts, through philosophical judgments and reasoning. The ontological openness of recognition unravels through the comprehensive being’s effort, when it becomes capable of recognizing the being in its intensionality, of the being-as-such. The onto-theological openness of recognition occurs when it is placed at the end of the effort of the comprehensive being, that each of us, fallible men, is, when we recognize in the intensional being the absolute Referential, the infallible Being – omnipresent, omniscient, omnipotent – that becomes, through communication and communion with each of us, the absolute Person called God. Therefore, from an ontological perspective, intensional recognition refers to the comprehensive power of the human being to recognize the being in its intensionality and in the ways it relates to existence; from an onto-theological perspective, it refers to the assumption of the human fallibility confronted with the divine mystery of the being- as-such, hence to the recognition of the creative omnipotence of the being in its universal and comprehensive intensionality, as God.

Finding himself at the end of the comprehension road, the fallible man has the power to recognize the limitations of his rational ability. But, through the onto-theological openness, recognition offers again


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

comprehension the chance to religious belief, the option to believe. Due to its double positioning – ontological and onto-theological – intensional recognition correlates the recognition of the being in the natural light of comprehension and the recognition of the being in the supernatural light of revelation, of the belief in the comprehensive and omnipotent being called God. After he recognizes onto-theologically, that is, after he recognizes God as the personalization of the name of all-that-is, the fallible man can directly address to the absolute Person. The acquiescence in the Person of God offers to the comprehensive being of the human an explanation and a moral and emotional support, in other words, o reason strengthened by belief with the goal of action.

Engaged in its daily existence, the comprehensive being as a rational being open to religious belief becomes capable of empathetic feeling, self- improvement, and self-objectification, of putting himself into the situation or the position of the other, of recuperatory recognition and anticipatory imagination. By comparing his own fallibility to the divine infallibility, the human being integrates himself comprehensively and in a state of total recognition into the divine order of the universe, the world and its own lucrative and justifying action. This means that recognition acquires, at the level of the different spheres of human activity, in the context of the regional ontologies of the social and the political, openness and a series of shapes, depending on the level of depth and on the manifestation range of each of the comprehensive beings that we, the fallible humans, are.

The fallible man and the facets of recognition

At an axiological level, the fallible man is becoming capable of recognizing when, by correctly reporting and evaluating, he is managing to appraise and validate the competencies, the abilities, and performances of a person or group. Axiological recognition goes beyond informational recognition, but does not overlap moral recognition. One can be recognized or appraised professionally, politically, economically, artistically, or sportily, etc., without being recognized morally too. Life was and continues to be the witness of the activities of persons who are important professionally, politically, economically, artistically, etc., but who are far from meeting the standards of minimum moralia. The degrees of axiological recognition vary according to the value of the work or the activity in question, the field, spatiotemporal coordinates, etc. Thus, we speak of recognition at a local, national, regional, and international level. It is a fact that the evaluation and hierarchy establishing processes are some of the most complex and controversial human activities, which frequently generate a genuine “swirl” of vanity, envy, and animosity.

From a legal perspective, recognition means the formalization of something or someone, the acceptance of a person or political, religious, sexual, ethnic, age, etc. group as having a legal status, the consecration of a


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

matter of fact previously legally not recognized. Something’s or someone’s legal recognition does not automatically imply their axiological recognition and, even less, their moral recognition. Legal recognition seems to be the closest to tolerance from all forms of recognition. One may not agree to homosexual behavior or to certain exotic cultural models, but if these do not hinder the freedom and security of others, if they are not a social danger and do not destabilize a democratic regime, they are gradually accepted and legalized as such in stable democratic societies.

Beyond its disputability, this personal choice is sanctioned as such, legally, in case it assumes a political form. The criminal character of this activity excludes extremist parties and movements from the legal, therefore recognized, political spectrum.

The non-fundamentalist religious recognition of a person or group outside one’s own religion, first and foremost, implies legal recognition.

This can also be an axiological and moral recognition to various degrees, even if one does not adhere to that religion. If one does not recognize the dogmatic truth of a religion or belief, this does not mean that one cannot accept the legal recognition of that religion or belief, provided that these do not harm the rule of law and democratic principles in any way. Legally, to religiously recognize a group is to formalize it, to recognize the organization and religious practices of that group.

In a moral sense, the recognition of something or someone means, as the case may be, their acceptance, admiration, or respect. After all, moral recognition has the maximum comprehensive power and, implicitly, is the accomplishment of the human condition, man’s fulfillment as human.

Moral recognition focuses on moral conscience, on the ethical evaluation and the moral values, and less or at all on the evaluation of professional, political, economical, sportive, etc. qualities. Even if it suffers certain losses at the level of axiological or legal recognition, moral recognition is the signal of having reached the human condition. A defeat in battle or in the swirl of professional, political, artistic, or sportive competition may turn into a moral victory, when one rises up to the level of the human condition, when one starts from the recognition of one’s own limitations and mistakes, one is capable of recognizing the superiority of the other.

Moral recognition provides a lesson of reasoning and correctness, of spiritual maturing and self-improvement.

The variety of the meanings of the term recognition can be highlighted through other delineations among levels. At the level of voices, it can be reflexive, active, and passive. First and foremost, one may speak of reflexive recognition when, in the context of the coagulation of self- awareness and of the creation of the personality, an essential role is played by the reflexive moment of self-knowledge and self-recognition. In the process of the formation of comprehensive truths, one’s self-knowledge and recognition are also validated through the knowledge and the recognition of the other. In some situations, even before recognizing


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

something or someone, we need to get to know ourselves and to be capable of recognizing our own qualities and limitations as well as possible. It is desirable that we go on to evaluating the others only after we have solved the reflexive moment of self-recognition as correctly and sincerely as possible. The honest recognition of one’s own limitations and mistakes also implies courage and trust in the critical judgment, reasoning, and understanding of the others.

Recognition implies an active moment – recognizing someone or something – and a passive moment: being recognized by someone.

Consequently, recognition can be nonreciprocal or reciprocal. It is nonreciprocal when it takes place in one direction, either active or passive.

You recognize someone but you are not, in turn, recognized by he/her; or you are recognized by someone, but he/she does not recognize you. For instance, A recognizes B as a professional, but B does not recognize the professional qualities of A. In this case, there is a univocal, one-way, nonreciprocal recognition. Recognition is reciprocal, uniting the active moment and the passive one, when is two-way: you recognize and are, in turn, recognized.

Another distinction that depends on the number of the involved actors and may have important socio-political consequences is that between inter-personal recognition and inter-group recognition. This distinction operates at different levels: informational, axiological, legal, moral, religious, and political. The greatest political problems – concerning the acceptance, projection, and construction of a recognition culture – are raised by minority groups in their relations with the majorities or in the relations among themselves, when specific problems and interests regarding profession, culture, religious beliefs, gender, age, etc. occur. The leap from the inter-personal level to the inter-group one places recognition not only in a perspective of multiplication and complication of problems, but also in one of the political complicacy and of the multiple implications it infers.

As we have seen, the various facets of recognition have unraveled the richness in meanings and nuances of recognition as fact and process. But the experience of recognition implies, as stated, a certain human type. The real human, aware of his own fallibility, capable of recognizing the other, becomes a genuine comprehensive being. What does this human type look like? How can we shape the profile of this actor, of the comprehensive truth, and of the comprehensive political, in the aspiration to a recognition culture? In our opinion, the anthropological model of fallibility is grounded, from a theological perspective, on the ontic duality of the divine and the human, induced by the Christian revolution and, from an anthropological-philosophical perspective, on the dynamics of the hypostases of the human.


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

The divine and the human, an ontic duality assumed through recognition

The theological reflection upon the divine and the human is based on the assumption, through reflection and faith, of the ontic duality divine- human. Through establishing the duality of the divine and the human, that is, through recognizing the two worlds and relating this secular and relative world to the absolute spiritual universe, and, at the same time, through assigning free will to the human person, the Christian revolution established human being as comprehensive being, a privileged being capable of understanding through recognition, and of recognizing through understanding. Through both separating and relating the divine and the human, Christianity bestowed trust and value on the individual as a person in this world, therefore making possible the subsequent differentiation and evolution of the secular world, the emancipating occurrence of the modern individualism at an economic, political, and cultural level. The Christian establishment of the ontic duality natural-supernatural, human-divine, and lay-sacred gave the comprehensive being of the human the right to exist freely and dignifiedly. As it is based on the recognition of these dualities at an ontic level, the ontological duality thinks and processes, while, at the same time, separates and relates the sacred and the lay, the transcendence and the immanence, the holy city of God and the worldly city of man. Projecting into the transcendent the creative divinity as an absolute instance, the ontological duality induces the tension of the necessary separation of the worlds, as well as the responsibility of the passage from the divine range to the secular through secularization and, reversely, from the secular to the sacred and the divine, through sacralization and divinization, respectively.

The omnipotence and omniscience of the creative divinity, on one hand, and the freedom and the responsibility of the human creature, on the other, prepared the theological-anthropological conditions of the delineation of man as comprehensive being. This was a necessary delineation because, in its omnipotence and omniscience, divinity gave freedom to its own creation within the limits of the secular world. However, we need to highlight that the freedom of man is necessary when the comprehensive being recognizes his own fallibility, is responsible, that is, oriented towards God, the supreme Good, and is grounded on understanding the Trinity “as one”, which reveals to us that everything comes from God, the Father, through Jesus Christ and through the Holy Spirit. The engagement of the comprehensive being in the secular life is necessary because it is responsible and supports himself on the continuous presence of God in the world.

The understanding of the existential duality of the divine and the human marks only the beginning of the reconstruction of the fallible man model. Next, there is the anthropological model of fallibility through the


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

dynamics of the human hypostases. This is, the revelation of the Holy Trinity as a hypostatic triad of divinity inspires the philosophical reflection on the hypostatic triad of the human. This is what Carl Schmitt called

“secularized theological concepts, not only because of their historic development …, but also because of their systematical structure”7. This famous phrase is true to a great extent. A series of key concepts in modern political-legal analysis come from theology; exception, the state of emergency, the sovereign, decision, human nature are “fundamentally systematical and methodological analogies” of the theological concepts, miracle, God, divine will, the nature of man. This is also a proof of the “prolific nature of political theology”, designed by the German jurist as an instrument for the diagnosis and a means of legitimating the political order.8 The Theological and the Political communicate because they both comprise, in Carl Schmitt’s decisional way of thinking, the requirement of a “potential ubiquity”, otherwise worrying for the secularist orientations in modern political thinking.9 Far from being secularists, we are aware that we are operating a necessary secularization through the identification of the hypostatic triad of the human.

As they are generally, and in anthropological contexts, frequently used, the terms “nature”, “condition”, and “essence” have different meanings. Next, we raise the problem of the definition and the correlation of these concepts by exploring their contents, dynamics, and finality within a philosophical-political anthropology. In this sense, we reiterate our view – nature, condition, and essence can be seen as hypostases of the human and, respectively, as political ways of being.

III. “Nature”, “condition”, and “essence” – a hypostatic triad of the human

Nature, the nature of things, and human nature – some semantic remarks

Derived from the Latin term natus, etymologically speaking, the word

“nature” means something you are born with, the original character and the fundamental traits of an entity, character and qualities that one is born with, as opposed to those referring to technicality or arts, and therefore to exterior, subsequent interventions of man or the society. Extending it, the term nature includes all the entities that make up the universe, “the contents, the structure, and the development of the spatiotemporal world as it is in itself”10, as well as the internal principles for the production or the determination of things, the laws that coordinate them. The term

“nature” generally refers to the learnable universe, to the principles of emergence and to the evolution of things in the range of immanent, natural, and created energies, a range that is rationally comprehensible, essentially different, and subordinated to the supernatural order, to the


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

iconomy of the divine mystery of uncreated energies, accessible only through revelation and religious belief.

As for the concept “the nature of things” and phrases such as “it is in the nature of (that) thing … to be that way” or “it was natural that …”, it must be noticed that they are still ambiguous, vagueness that, in our opinion, results from the fact that they comprise two dimensions, two explanatory claims, respectively: causal and teleological, both also found in the concept of nature. The causal why as a source for the emergence of a real thing or process meets and competes with the teleological what for, having the “what for” of that thing or process as its final goal. This can be explained by the fact that the concept “the nature of things” and the phrase “it is in the nature of (that) thing … to be that way” take certain defining elements from the mother-concept of “nature”, that includes both a generative-causal dimension and an evolutionary-teleological one. When we speak of the “nature” of things, we transfer upon them the causations and the properties of nature, regarding both the innate, generative-causal, non-artificial character, and the ordered and necessary character that has a certain goal. For this reason, specialized dictionaries and encyclopedias define the nature of a thing as “the principle that produces the development of an entity and its realization as a certain type … all the properties that define it”11, “all the characters that make a thing or an entity belong to a species or an established category”12. Therefore, the nature of a thing is its way of being and evolving according to its origin and for the purpose it has to accomplish. Each thing has its own nature, a causal datum and a final ratio, because its common behavior comes from its origins and has to fulfill a certain goal: fire burns, water waters, humans speak, lunatics rave, animals hunt, etc.

As relatively different from the classical conception of the human nature characterized by an ethical, legal, and cultural determination, sometimes implacably nuanced, the more recent ecological and systemic- auto-poietic concepts attempt to give back the term nature its ecological and bio-genetic meanings. As for us, we attempt to recover the scientific, biological meaning of the concept of human nature, the bio-genetic- ecological hypostasis of the human respectively, by parting it from the classical-modern meaning of the term human nature that highlighted the contribution of the natural law and rights of the individual to the liberal creation of the theory on the citizen. We find this position right because, in our view, the moral and legal dimensions are those that characterize the human condition, another hypostasis of the comprehensive being of the human.

An ever changing interaction between capacities, conditions, and necessities, the human nature is dynamic and contradictory. “The key of human nature lies in its variety”, according to John W. Chapman, “Our nature is flexible and malleable. We symbolize some self-modeled cultural artifacts. Or, rather, our nature is a mixture of tendencies and attributes


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

permanently confronting a variety of circumstances and meanings”13. Instinctive and rational, optimistic and pessimistic, constructive and destructive, ordered and disordered, heroic and coward, tragic and comic, humans display an amazing diversity that cannot be understood starting from a simple and rigid principle of unity, but rather from an aggregate of generating principles that act specifically in various historic contexts. Their multidimensional nature makes humans ever more paradoxical and unpredictable because of the cleavages between the bio-genetic basis, the richness in cerebral activity and psychological experience, the social plurality, and the diversity of interest groups.

Starting from this point of view, we will next approach Edgar Morin’s paradigm on human nature, which is most useful since the French philosopher rejected, from a systemic-auto-poietic and ecological perspective, the cultural and anthropological unilateralizations and skiddings.

Human nature, a rediscovered paradigm

Published in 1973, Edgar Morin’s The Lost Paradigm: Human Nature14 is a fundamental anthropological work that rejects “the insular notion of man”

withdrawn in his own nature and re-launches the subject of human nature in the context of the new ecological awareness. As a reaction to the closed paradigm of anthropologism, sociologism, and culturalism, the new ecological awareness demonstrates, through a decantation of the developments in ecology, ethology, and molecular biology, that between the three overlapping strata – man-culture; life-nature; physics-chemistry – there are no adiabatic boundaries (without receiving or losing heat to the exterior). Therefore, the French thinker concludes that we need: “neither pan-biologism, nor pan-culturalism, but a richer truth that would assign human biology and culture a greater role, given the reciprocal influence each has over the other”15. This new ecological awareness looks upon the ecosystem as a whole functioning on the logics of negenthropic self- organizing. In this context, the organizing of living systems takes place through a process of continuous self-production, of auto-poiesis, or of continuous self-reorganizing. The turning of the “noise” into information and the integration of a new element resulting from an aleatory conduct into social order has become the logics of the hominization process as well.

According to the French thinker, ecological catastrophe, genetic deviation, and sociological dissidence are the triggers of the hominian revolution, and the anthropogenesis resulting from the ecological, genetic, cerebral, social, and cultural interferences are based on the cerebralization uniting all organizational developments. In the light of the research conducted during the last several decades, the anthropological field can be therefore defined as an anthropological totality through the dynamics of its complementary and competing elements: the genetic system (genetic code,


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

genotype), the brain (fenotypic epicenter), the socio-cultural system (phenomena-generating system), and the ecosystem (ecological niche, environment). The ecosystem controls the genetic code, the brain, and the society; the genetic system produces the brain that conditions society and the development of cultural complexity. In its turn, the socio-cultural system updates the brain’s competencies and abilities, modifies the ecosystem, and influences genetic selection and evolution. This means that, scientifically, any human behavioral sequence has a genetic feature, a cerebral, a social, a cultural, and an ecosystemic one, which means, philosophically, that the human is a multidimensional being, lacking a particular essence, such as an exclusively genetic or a cultural one. The biologic and the cultural strata coexist and the human is, by nature, multidimensional, circumstantial, malleable, and creative.

With all these in mind, the human can be considered a genetic-cerebral- socio-cultural system whose organic epicenter is the brain, the true “bio- cultural foundation rock” through which the individual organism, the genetic system, the ecosystemic environment, and the socio-cultural system communicate. As the result of a long process of encephalization, the brain of Homo Sapiens, an integrating center of the anthropological universe, ensures communication between the biological and the cultural, conferring the specificity of the human being through comprehensive reason and articulated language.

The person in a human condition perspective

Plastic and innovative, intelligent and amoral, the human nature allows people to show various forms of manifestation and adaptation. The social consequences and risks of this matter of fact, regardless of moral and legal values, reveal the limitations of human nature and of the proto- political as a natural politics. Moreover, since it obeys the implacable natural laws, the human being remains, because of its biological nature and bodily existence, a limited being, morally sinful, and depending on various conditionings. Representing “the most complex system of rationality turned into art”, the human body is, according to Dumitru Stăniloae, “a palpable, real, special rationality related to the palpable, real rationality of nature”16, therefore a finite and imperfect rationality turned into art and bound to die. However, the painful awareness of the finite existence, the emotion of facing death, the need for moral principles and values have caused humans a “thirst for immortality”, the subjective consciousness grounded on the belief in the spiritual values of transcendence and trans- mortality. “When facing death”, writes the Gaudium et Spes encyclical letter, “the mystery of the human condition reaches its climax …. The seed of immortality it carries within, unable to turn into matter, rebels against death”17 and, through the divine revelation, the human finds out that, being created by the perfect and infinite Being called God, with a


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

comprehensive power and to a happy end, was given the dignity of moral consciousness, whose grounds lies in the calling of man to communion with the eternal Being of God.

Surpassing the palpable rationality of the body and the passive sensitivity of nature, the soul is, as a comprehensive “subjective rationality”, the creation shared to man by the eternal personalized Being called God. This is the reason why the soul is also personal, in dialogue and communion through the force of faith and revelation with the almighty creative God. The soul is nothing more than the personal awareness of the way that needs to be continuously taken between the immanence of the human nature and the transcendence of the human condition or, in other words, the way of the conscious transcendence of the fallible man to the spiritual values and principles of the human condition.

In a nutshell, the transcendent nature of the comprehensive being called man cannot be understood from a human nature perspective, the biological nature of the individual. Despite his fundamental fallibility, the human assumes and surpasses his own biological nature by understanding the being in his intensionality, the being as such, in his pure and self- sufficient act-of-being, and also by recognizing the omnipresence and creative omnipotence of the divinity in the intensionality of the being. In fact, simultaneously with the emergence of the “anthropological breach”, through the rational exercise of comprehension and the assumption of religious faith, the human took the first step towards delineating his spiritual destiny from the natural one. Indifferent, objective, and implacable, the human nature could not penetrate, sua sponte, the world of ethical values, spiritual freedom, and personal responsibility. Only by aspiring to the state of axiological maximum and to the spiritual altitude of the human condition is the human capable of resonating with the transcendence and the divinity. Digging deep inside consciousness, the human discovers that “a law does not impose itself on him, but he has to obey it, and its voice, always calling him to love, to do good, and to avoid evil, echoes in heart’s ears at the right time: Do this, abandon that!”18. The comprehensive being manages to reach the divine altitude of the human condition only by freely assuming its own option, experienced as a belief in the pure, simple, and perfect act of the Being itself, known as the absolute Referential.

To sum up, the status of the human condition could not be realized without the assumption of faith within the intensional being as divinity, the recognition of the demiurgical role of the embodied Word and the Trinity as one. The joy and the love shared by the divine creation ensures that the human soul reaches a state of grace and has the ability to distinguish between the imperfect beauty of the human nature and the perfect beauty of the human condition. Or, in the unique words of the theologian-priest Dumitru Stăniloaie, “only as an embodied spirit or a soul,


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

from the first moment of its existence, is the human spirit a factor injected into the world, yet distinct from nature, but able to freely use it”19.

The dramatic essence of the human in act. “Actus humanus”

We consider that in the anthropological model the term “human essence” defines, together with “human nature” and “human condition”, one of the hypostases of the fallible man as a comprehensive being. Unlike the bio-genetic nature and the moral-spiritual condition, the human essence embodies the intermediary hypostasis of the fallible man who is tearing apart between immanence and transcendence, between the instincts of his own nature and the aspirations of his spiritual condition.

This dramatic situation is amplified and complicated at the level of the aggregation of individuals in action and of the politically organized communities. As an active and social hypostasis of the comprehensive being, human essence comprises of the defining states and acts of the fallible man in his real existence, that is multiply conditioned and, at the same time, teleological oriented. When we speak of existence we have in mind the extensional being that is transforming through the spatiotemporal extension, multiplication, and diversification, a being with countless forms and modalities.

The hypostasis of the human essence opens up an outlook on the problematic of man because it underlines the vastness and diversity of the existential range. Unlike the depth and hermetism of the being’s intensionality, who, in its pure act-of-being contains everything in nuce, the being in its extensionality turned into existence comprises of numerous forms and manifestations of the being, including its duplication into subject and object. The coordinates of this ontic duality (intensional- extensional) help explain the richness of the existential expressions of the human being, respectively the diversity of scientific, philosophical, artistic, and theological perspectives of knowledge, interpretation and expression.

All these contribute to the build-up in historical experience of the human civilization.

In the anthropological model we suggest, the human essence, as a hypostasis of comprehensive being, focuses on action and efficiency.

Individual or/and collective, the action consist of the resources, capacities, interests, and ideals of the fallible man, providing a standard for his value and that of the society he lives in. Therefore, the human essence defines the man as a responsible action within the limits of his existence, of his comprehensive being in the existential reality, a specific hypostasis, yet related to the others, the bio-genetic nature and the spiritual-moral condition.

To sum up, we must note that, when we speak of the central role of action in determining the human essence, we refer to the human act as to an “actus humanus” according to Cardinal Karol Wojtyla’s view. From a


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

“realistic, objective and, at the same time, metaphysical” hermeneutic tradition, the great theologian highlighted that this uninsciental Latin phrase suggests that the interpretation of the act is the result of a

“conception regarding the being and, immediately, from the view on potential-actus, that the Aristotelians and Tomists used for explaining the changing and simultaneously dynamic character of the being”20. Hence,

“actus humanus” emphasizes the voluntary, subjective role of the man who acts consciously and freely, therefore as “actus personae”. We certainly take “actus personae” as a confirmation of the anthropological model of the hypostatic triad nature-condition-essence because “actus personae”, as “the personal existence underlying the dynamic cohesion of man”21, expresses the role of the person in act22, the hypostatic contribution of the human condition, together with the nature and the essence.

IV. The human nature, a matrix of the proto-political

The proto-political or the political dimension of human nature As a dynamic reality expressing the natural essence of the human, the human nature evolved during the hominization process through the requirements of survival and selection of the better equipped individuals.

In a prehistoric context, the procurement and distribution of food, the satisfaction of sexual instincts, the fight for leadership of the group, and the organization of the hominid collectivities around the strongest began to manifest themselves as true proto-political problems. Along hominization, the proto-political hypostasis became ever more visible and foreshadowed after the emergence of the historic societies, the establishment of the rules of the power game and of the resources distribution. Unlike animal species that homeostatically coordinate their collective behaviors, the human species acquired, due to the development of the neocortex, the ability to imaginatively anticipate and, thus, to originally adapt to the environment and to the unknown. Encephalization and socialization led to the emergence and to the concomitant evolution of humans, society, and politics. “The human was not the first one there, then society, and then politics”, states Julien Freund, “they were all given at the same time and from the very beginning, so that trying to reach beyond the political or the society is trying to reach beyond the human”23. Since an anthropological research cannot go beyond man and his deeds, from a natural reason perspective, this means a tarrying at the level of the scientific analysis of human nature.

As a political dimension of the human nature, the primary stratum of the proto-political is not only a bio-historic acquisition buried in the dark and distant past, but also a constant and daily presence taking the shape of the latent political within every individual who attempts, through force and tactical abilities in an emotional atmosphere, to solve his immediate needs and necessities. After all, the proto-political expresses the


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

fundamentally amoral human nature, in a competitive and conflicting context that is directly controlled through relations of power, domination, and obedience. Expressing the organic link to life, the proto-politics allows for the biological survival through political organizing as well as for the political survival through biological organizing. That is, solving the primary needs – territory, energy resources, etc. – occurs through force and natural intelligence, through direct adjustment of the power relations between individuals and collectivities.

Needs, innovation, skidding

The diversification of the way of living in human collectivities through social innovation also meant the emergence and development of the interaction between social systems – biosocial, eco-social, economic, cultural, communicational, and political – and, implicitly, the construction of a global society. Anthropological findings suggest that the societies with a specialized and differentiated political system are those that, at a certain point during their history, had to face certain challenges and to innovate.

Irrespective of this challenge – be it the integration of socio-cultural differences, the assimilation of the results of a scientific revolution or of an economic development, or the administration of territories and populations – those societies had to face some acculturation, migration, cohabitation, or internal social differentiation processes. Thus, it was proved that the societies that are more open to energy and information exchange with other societies are also more innovative and develop a complex and efficient political organization. On the other hand, closed autarchic and ethnocentric societies are not innovative and, because they lack a differentiated and specialized political organization, they lose when confronted with more dynamic and politically better organized societies.

Recall that the survival of human groups does not simply mean continuous conservation and reproduction by repeating, but also change and adaptation to new conditions through social innovation. The societies that vanished as a result of genocide and ethnocide caused by wars or major economic-political crises are those that did not know how to innovate and better organize themselves politically. Hence, the hypothesis: the relations between social innovation and political power can provide a frame for the understanding of human societies that made history. After all, the dynamics social innovation–political power proves to be a test for the intelligence of collective survival.24

The diversity of the types of political organizing, the variety of the forms of political competition, and the efficiency of sectorial policies can be explained by the dynamics of social innovation correlated with the structuring of political power. The diversification of life styles and cultural models, the creation, imposition, and acceptance of new rules lead to the emergence of social innovation as a system of transforming, refreshing,


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

and civilizing collective action. The dialectics social innovation–political power helps us understand the social reproduction mechanism, the diversity of human societies, and the variety of the political systems that regulate social cooperation and competition. The inter conditions of social innovation and political power explain the varying efficiency of political systems and, implicitly, the diversity of forms in political organization.

The proto-political experienced numerous skids, mostly politicianist, throughout history. Turning the political into politicianism implies the corruption of the moral-civilizing condition of the political, the altering of its rational-practical essence, the falsification of the constitutional- legitimizing modality, and the abandonment of the social-regulatory end.

While the political is the practical-rationality, at a society (social-global) level put into practice on the basis of the legitimate control over state power, politicianism means the narrowing to elimination of the legitimacy basis of political action, the degrading of its rationality and morality. The contradiction between politics and politicianism is the contradiction between the civic-moral condition of the citizen and the immorality of the primary egotism; the pragmatic rationality of the political human and the incompetence of imposture; the constitutional-legitimizing modality of the rule of law and the discretionary voluntarism of dictatorship; the social- regulating end of the deliberative and participatory democracies and the halt of the societies shortcircuited by oligarchies.

V. The human condition and the reconstruction of the meta- political

The meta-political or the theoretical reconstruction of the political

The meta-political was born within the melting pot of the reflexivity of the human condition, the political that turns on itself, that thinks itself. As a systematic form of thinking, the meta-political emerged when people started to think rationally about life and to formulate theories25 on the governing of human communities. Political theory is, after all, an explicit and personalized reaction to the problems generated by the organizing of community life. As a theoretical reconstruction of the political, the meta- political is the point where scientific, philosophical, and theological- political endeavors meet. As a specific intellectual activity, distinct from action, political theory attempts to learn, interpret, and understand the various aspects of current politics through numerous causal, functional, conditional, genetic, motivational, thematic, etc. explanations.

In its various hypostases – as history of political thinking, as reflection on the concepts, principles, values, and interests in the public sphere, as well as on the relations between the public and the private sphere, as a shaping of political behaviors, as general theoretical-methodological frame, explanatory-evaluating in the context of political science, as


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

exegesis of political doctrines and ideologies – political theory confronted a series of dilemmas generated by the relations between object and subject, deeds and values, deeds and norms, immanence and transcendence, description and prescription, truth and interests, particular and universal, thought and action etc. Gianfranco Pasquino did not accidentally state that

“there is no universally accepted idea about what ‘political theory’ is (and should be). Several ways of theorizing and several theories confront each other in a probably correct manner. The clearest distinction is that between the theory understood in a Weberian perspective, as a complex of empathy and understanding called Verstehen, and the positivist theory, specifically defined by, for instance, Kaplan (1964)”26, as a system of laws.

Attempting to systematize clearly, Jean Leca suggested a system made up of three axes, in order to position political theory, as well as any other product of political thinking: “the axis between the most general theory of the political (“essence”, “pure politics”) and the theoretical aspects of any research activity; the axis between ethical and empirical, and, finally, the axis between speculation (or contemplation), prescription, and pragmatic”27. Depending on its position within such a system, it is our opinion that one can generally argue for two meanings of the concept of political theory, or, more precisely, for “the competing existence of ‘political theory’ (pt) as a sub-domain within political science, and ‘The Political Theory’ (PT) as an interdisciplinary activity stretching way beyond the community of the politologists, including philosophers, linguists, historians, memoirists, essayists, actors who attempt to come up with general reflections on society and politics starting from their own experience”28.

Political theory between the empirical and the normative

An important distinction between the meanings of political theory is therefore provided by our point of view: general-interpretative-normative (prescriptive) or theological-political (Political Theory), particular-empirical- realist (descriptive) as a scientific result (political theory), respectively. The existence of the three levels of the ultimate goals of the political, as proposed by Julien Freund29, the teleological, the technological, and the eschatological, suggest a possible criterion for the identification of the meta- political at a philosophic, scientific and theological level, respectively. The teleological level, concerning the management of the common good by ensuring external security and internal concord, belongs specifically to the philosophically normative political theory. As a normative political theory, the meta-political can be defined as “the learning of the nature of political things”30, as systematic reflection on the goals of government, on the existing political institutions, and on the ways these can be changed. Also known as “traditional theory”, the philosophical Political Theory (PT) implies a complex of fundamental questions and contradictory answers to


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

controversial problems regarding the nature of the political and the human condition, a dialogue throughout an intellectual tradition of over two thousand years. The technological level characterized by the achievement of the real objectives of policies from various areas pertains to the field of scientifically causal-empirical political theories. As a scientific theory, political theory took over the inheritance of modern epistemology. This means that it took over the standard conception or the logic-empirical model of scientific theories characterized by: the positioning of the subject outside the object to be known and the belief that, thereby, one can reach objectivity in knowledge and measurements;

the preeminence of observation over speculation, of the reality of facts over qualitative analysis based on interpretation; the quantification of reality, the preference for numbers, measurements and quantitative analyses concerning data from reality; the gnoseological optimism grounded on the trust in the potential of the calculating reason and the force of rationalist determinism; the idea that mathematical ratios govern phenomena and, implicitly, that any future evolution exists within the present state. In turn, eschatology is the moral-religious theory on the ultimate destiny of the world and mankind, on the end of the world and the judgment day, as well as on the ways of salvation the human soul from sin. The eschatological level concerns the rule of finalities, of the ultimate values that mankind takes on in order to render meaning to life and to history. This third level seems to belong to the theological meta-political.

It is the level that independently legitimizes the political, the significant concepts of the modern theory of the state being, as already said, the theological concepts secularized both because of their historic development and their systematic structure.31 The politicization of theological concepts, especially of that of sovereignty, in search of new forms and theories on legitimacy is characteristic to the modern political thinking as a whole.

Therefore, the image of the meta-political is that of the cooperation between reflexive-normative, value-oriented theories and descriptive, empirically-oriented, operational and causal theories. In a society where rational curiosity and comprehensive rationality coexist in an effort to justify and explain the reason of human acts, the meta-political remains an open horizon for thorough explanations.

VI. The human essence and political praxis The politics, an Ianus bifrons

Currently defining politics as: the exercise of power, the art of governance, the making of collective decisions, the authoritarian allocation of resources, etc., as well as the science of governance or political science, common judgment gives political action two opposite meanings: a positive, noble one, regarding the pacification of society and


Anton Carpinschi The Political And The Hypostases Of The Human

its orientation toward certain superior ends called, as the case may be, “the common good”, “the public business”, “the civic ethos”, etc.; and a negative, pejorative one, that often sees politics as an amoral, degrading activity, the domain of egos and intrigues, the arena of arrivists and demagogues. This deliberate distinction is grounded, in our opinion, on the differentiation between the hypostases of the human nature and of the human condition. Many people declare themselves apolitical, bored or disgusted by politics, precisely because of certain proto-political manifestations emerging from the amoral depths of the human nature. On the other hand, noble in its end – the creation of civility based on the values of the human condition – politics is forced to appeal to the explanatory-interpretative valences of the meta-political discourse.

Relating itself to the needs and potentialities of the proto-political, as well as to the reflexive-interpretative valences of the meta-political, politics is a multiform and dynamic activity concerning, from a functional perspective, the organization and the rule of the various specialized systems and sub- systems of the global society; from a structural perspective, it regards the relations of power, force, and influence among individual and collective actors; from a spiritual perspective, concerns with the ideas, conceptions, and mentalities of those actors. In a nutshell, we may say that human essence is highlighted by political praxis, by the organizing and rule of global society, more precisely, by the distribution and redistribution of resources and values by the legitimate political power. As a competition between group interests, a game of force relations and, simultaneously, a management of the common good, politics regulates social order through

“the monopoly of legitimate physical violence” (Max Weber) and through putting public policies into practice.

The citizen or the political essence of the human

Seen as the essence of the human, the political is a fundamental category of the human conditioned socially. The identification of the political essence of the human implies the use of certain criteria in order to take out this essence from the many constituent aspects of socio-human activity. Just as ethics, aesthetics, or economics have their own identification criteria, so does the political has the criteria to determine the specificity of its activity. Just as the good and the evil, the beautiful and the ugly, the profitable and the non-profitable are the criteria of ethics, aesthetics and, respectively, economics, the relations among command and obedience, private and public, friend and foe make up, as highlighted by Julien Freund, the presuppositions underlying the identification of the political as central essence of the human condition and the social order.

As a criterion for the political essence of the human, the relation command-obedience sets the directions for the force and authority orientations of any type of socio-political order. Political goals and




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