18:52: Very humid air, no wind whatever, grey sky, everything is wet after rain. On the way here I spoke briefly to a middle-aged man who was collecting discarded cans and newspapers. 'An example to all of us' I said - but he was not ready for the remark. 'It's for recycling' he said.
Then I saw a rather mobile sheet or blanket, completely covering two people on a bench. You could only see their legs - or the legs of one of them. They seemed not to care if others could guess what they were doing - provided they themselves could not see who might be watching. Would I do that? Yes perhaps. Perhaps we all would if sufficiently aroused and in love. Perhaps we need to do such things and forget convention. Social blankets?
Today I concluded (from a chance sampling of two books*) that formal government may be a (poor?) substitute for the magic of presence and the sacredness of certain people which enables some tribal people to do without formal government.
In one of the books I read of tribal people waiting to see what revered elders would do and then following their example. No one gives orders.
Reminds me of when I asked trainee teachers what they remembered with pleasure about their own teachers, and parents. They remembered what their teachers and parents did and what they were, not what they said, or taught, or told them to do. To be a good example - what a challenge.
Reminds me also of art - in which copying of precedents is important, and can I think be more creative than it seems?
If this is so then creative democracy (and other such attempts at constructive anarchy) will not succeed without social magic of some kind. Getting nearer.
Lucy Mair, Primitive Government, Penguin Books, Harmondsworth 1962, page 66:
This tells that belief in special inherited powers of certain individuals is important where formal government in minimal.
Arthur Schnitzler, Dream Story, Penguin Books, Harmondsworth 1999, page 52:
'Release him,' said the nun, 'I'm willing to redeem him.'
There was a moment of profound silence, as though something appalling had occurred...