“How do we know, that we are holding a rock in our hands?”

A perplexing neo/cyber hyper modernist existentialist story with French Fries, a tiny philosopher and the sensation of empty rocks inside the Future of Tao...

Written by Raúl Gasque

“How do we know that we are holding a rock in our hands?” usually we know because a stone is sharp. From the moment we hold it with the intention of throwing it, it hurts us. In a delicate paradox that reminds us the meaning of a natural pact. We want to destroy, hurt or transgress; even a little bit…that same object will scratch ourselves. We know that is weight can mean a lot and at the same time, depending on the strength with which it is thrown, it can break in two a skull like a coconut.... Once the rock hits its target the blood would flow in gushes —“The head bleeds a lot.” Someone whispers—everything will be full of a thick deep blood or tiny pieces of the materials that we just cracked. That skull can be a system. The rocks we hold wants to smash against what keeps us in a contemporary sate of voluntary oppression—A little song with a soft cello gets inside this text like a wild Taiwanese neon snake—Throwing a rock is exactly what makes us human. It is the instrument we used to defend ourselves and hunt, to survive—A little philosopher jumps inside our rare text and starts to dance. He has a beard like the ancient Greeks and sings “Harvest Moon” with the voice of Jane Birkin. Shaking his little hips around the sentences that lays in these lines—Its parallels are only found in sex and painting—Our little dancing philosopher open his hands with the rhythm of a teletubbie—everything is a cavern—“O yes!” our little philosopher says while he shake his head in tiny circles—Memory. What we were, what we are. What we want to destroy. What we need to sustain for our strength to keep us from as human beings... in the fall of 2016 we all felt a compelling need to do that—Thunders in the sky of the text. Everything turns dark and in a schizophrenic purple. Our tiny Philosopher touches his head in a painful way…. His beard becomes sand that falls and flies away in the sky. Then, his legs. Then, his arms. Then, his face. Then. Then….—an open xenophobe arrived to power in the most militarily powerful country in the world. All the humanists grabbed their stones and threw them against his semiotic absurd dystopian filthy image. We were/are so angry. Let the humanists shout. Shoot against the system. After a big rage and charge was released we saw our hands. And they were empty. No dust mixed with blood. No scratches. An endless ocean of emptiness….—Where did our tiny philosopher go? where!”—but we felt that we threw them. Now we realize that we didn’t have rocks ... Hajoe Moderegger and Franziska Lamprecht whisper to us “what we have done is mastered the ability to throw stones with empty hands". They keep asking us in a language of light and pixels “Have we achieved any targets?” “How many transgressions did we achieve?” “Did these stones hit in the center of the system and resound to the point of breaking down?” —No—the sound of the inner earth talked. Perhaps the only thing that happened is that as Moderegger and Lamprecht traced in a flying delicate yet fulminant metaphor…the only thing that has happened is that we have fallen into a trap. Now in “The Future of Tao” we can witness that we are all surrounded by a gray mass, empty ... without content. Without stones. With mirages without a face. Without direction. Annoyed, and prisoners inside a black hole of a pejorative nothingness. And while the system continues to suffocate, more and more the humans keep falling into the faucets of the matrix. So deeply that now they/we live all through a digital system of fictions that stimulate the deepest part of our limbic system.

In this dark circle the annoyance is explicit. But nobody looks at anyone. You do not know who is who. They are all upset. They only babble. Arguing. Moving their hands with endless violence.

Deaf and dumb, the avatars or digital humanoids throw things that are supposed to be stones. This is how they feel. But the reality is that just as the palms of our hands don’t have a scratch, the system has not only remained intact but also strengthened.

And so without realizing it, we are in the depths of a system called The Future of Tao. Here we can see a universe. It is not uniform. A mirage with a green and purple light shines throughout this space. The bizarre mirror rotates with its own light. In which the consequent clues are more venerable and contain other approaches. Because each dystopia has its own utopia.

But this Utopia is not sweet. It smells like if we are inside a MAC computer box when it just got opened. There are multiple vibrations. But the stimulus, the feeling and the emotions are still here, reminding us that the most powerful organ of a human being is inside the brain.

In the green and purple interior we see before the curtain of multifarious light an abstract trace by Sheryl Cheung. It seems to indicate us an opposite way from the angry lost avatars circle that we have just abandoned. Now the interior of a virtual reality looks like a memory: how does a plant feel—An invisible voice whispers—... and we see there distant gestures of reflections of an artist who show us a series of things that we do not see coming after throwing impossible/invisible stones. “What is she trying to convey to us?” “Is it a nod to not die of thirst on the infinite path of a virtual eternal solitude?” Before we finish this thought we are approached by Xia Lin's art project '3C Xing Yi Quan'. We see a white light curtain that is ineligible to the human eye. On screen, two humans begin to challenge the virtual matrix. “You imitate us, we can also imitate you” —Oh yeah! The voice of the tiny philosopher appears in a tiny glimpse of blue light—. “Now we will be one” the two humans say without saying. “We will have the ability to transgress our own organs to move like you”. “Now we will be integrated not only through the retinal but also from our body”. “Before silicon and plastic sprout from our arms and legs, we will become you.” Vibrations start to move like a hard rock volcano in the very center of Down Town Taipei—The MC Donald’s and Seven Elevens get completely smashed and French fries start to fly and arrive into this rare world where the light, now, is softer…

A miraculous helmet comes from the sky. We become a machine. The NAXS corp device covers our sex. Our extremities. Our conscious. Our feelings. We descend slowly into a large cave of immaterial lava—The tiny philosopher grabs our hand, we don’t see him but he is shaking his head and talks in the language of a Vangelis electronic organ—the machine and our universe vibrates again. Water and comfort coldness gets into our inner self. We become one. With the machine. “Where do we go?” “Where are we” “We don’t know”. We are a machine. We are humans. The rocks will be stones again in other materiality. The Future is now. The future of Tao…

Raúl Gasque is a Mexican photographer, writer, journalist and artist who works with conceptual ideas. His work is a continuous exploration of issues related to anthropology, history, psychology and other social sciences. His life has been an ongoing exploration in different parts of the world, a situation that has stimulated to try to explore things from unconventional angles. R.Gasque is currently based in Taipei Taiwan, a place where he developed a project of exchange on contemporary photography between Mexico and Taiwan.

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