Understanding ideals is instrumental for social empowerment.
Daily you can read articles and opinions on what's wrong in the world, what's the root of our problems, and what it takes to fix them.
Depending on the beliefs system of the author, the problem range from unrestrained Capitalism, Monarchy, Neo-Liberalism, Neo-Conservatism. Collective solutions, that benefit the 99%, are inevitably framed as roads to socialism or communism. The uninformed are quickly swayed by fear and reject any social-democratic reform that would benefit the entire collective. So we're stuck, "framed in a dead end" by elite narratives echoed by their complicit media.
People who wish to have transparent, accountable democracies, just can't evolve. Dissenters gravitate around online communities and alternative media, that reinforce their desire to belong. Social democrats, progressives, anarchists, believe to be speaking in a coherent, cohesive collective. They often use the term "we" when commenting in blogs or articles.
"WE" is an illusion.But they aren't a community as long as social activism is so fiercely fragmented. A coherent collective consciousness, a community, is one that is in sync with its own shared values. The Civil Society, "Activism," is clearly blind in front of the fact, that its entities, organizations, movements, pages, groups, thrive on competition. Their own instinct of survival makes them compete aggressively and cross-suppress other voices, not cooperate. There is no incentive in cooperation when the birth of a new idea would threaten the income of a community of activists.
For quite some time now, our brightest minds in Astrophysics have spelled out the equation on the force of Gravity, the famous "E=mc2". As they progress in their understanding on Space, Time, and the origins of our universe, billions of light years away from where our "pale blue dot" is, social scientists can't even get a grip on the social forces that would promote social cohesion. Despite the fact that understanding our invisible social dynamics NOW is incredibly urgent, social activism is a legacy of division and conflicts, that argues about peace!
In Social Psychology and Sociology, ideals are invisible forces. They are higher concepts, that carry the hopes, dreams and aspirations of evolving societies. When humans understand ideals better, they are empowered, they are inspired to control them. They forge them, and they evolve. When people understood that health was greatly influenced by diet (role of saturated fats) and cardiovascular exercise, we witnessed the Health Revolution. People suddenly owned health. They knew how "they were health," how they were part of the process of health, and they could see it at the same time as the invisible ideal to understand and conquer more.
What about Peace? Despite numerous speeches and famous quotes by notable public figures and past heroes, from JFK, MLK, Gandhi, Jane Addams, Malcom X, Poul Hartling, the XIV Dalai Lama, all warning that the absence of war is NOT peace, humanity is so glued to the dogma of "War & Peace", that some of the most respectable indepenent media sites have a section dedicated to "War and Peace"
This has been humanity biggest fallacy. We're convinced that, once cleared, this fallacy will engage intellectuals in heated debates. How could we be so blind, so stupid, so clueless, and not realize that the simple analogy of peace with wars, is the precursor of the metaphor "peace is the absence of wars?" This cognitive equation literally prevents, completely shuts down solidarity among social activists, human rights, or environmental advocates.
If you can accept the logic that people wish for peace, debate and theorize on peace, because they are deeply concerned, you are already thinking in terms of fear. You understand the concept that people project their fears onto any kind of conflicts. This fear is the shared primal human emotion, that is the stimulus of fighting social battles and the bond, the inherent key to solidarity, cohesion. Tthe thread that runs through our extremely divided, erratic crowds of activism is the fear we share. The secret of revolt is no secret is simple design.
"E=mc2" or "Peace=Absence of Fear". Can you imagine cohesion now? If we wish to point out a possible root of our problem, we don't need to look any further. Unless we learn how creative cooperative human beings can be and truly get over our differences, the coalitions of campaigns and national initiatives like Climate action, money out of politics, Stop the NSA, Undo TTIP, will remain nice photo-ops, where long list of organizations hold hands pretending to be... cohesive.