A musical map of peace, part 6

Let’s move on with our map. I fear that even though this is supposed to be a musical map, the music has to wait a bit. (We have something to look forward to!)

What becomes increasingly clear is that we are looking at a picture with two halves. The center point seems to be the twins Agon/Concert.

WAR-AGONY-ANTAGONISM-AGON¦CONCERT (subliminalis/ instrumentalis/ humana)

Somewhat arbitrarily (or intuitively) I have put war to the left and peace to the right. Let us pursue this left-right dichotomy further.


Left and right is not just normal but the norm in much of our thinking, especially in politics.

Sure, we have gradations like “far left” and “extreme right”, but these don’t reduce and soften the polarity but only make it stronger, even more tension-filled and explosive.One probable reason for the ubiquitousness of left-right thinking is that is it so easy. We have a body with a left and right side, a left and a right hemisphere. But even more basic is the view in front of our nose: our two hands.

The word “right” has a double meaning in many languages, indicating both a direction and a value (the right thing, right thinking). In Hungary this is extremely clear in the name of the radical right wing party Jobbik. “Jó” means good, “jobb” means “right” as direction and “better” as value, while “Jobbik” means “even better” or “even more to the right”

Now that’s a good meme for a party that wants voters (and which party doesn’t?).

It would now be quite natural and predictable for me to make the suggestion: Let’s get away from our left-right thinking. Let’s be holistic and look beyond; think outside the box, go outside our differences.

But what my map has uncovered, what it has turned up to be, IS actually a left-right model. Only different from the usual political one.

So I will retain the left-right model but redefine, magnify and widen it. In doing this it actually will become holistic, go beyond our usual thinking. It will include, encompass and “hug” our bad old political left-right model.

So, all of the political left-right model will be on the left side in my map.

Agon and antagonism go well together with our usual political thinking, which is mostly competitive, aggressive, critical, polarized, exaggerating differences of aims and agendas in order to get a clearer “profile”. (One doesn’t want voters to think: “These parties have so many similarities that I might as well vote on the one or the other.” That way political defeat lies, or at least party defeat. Which might not be such a bad thing from my perspective.)

So polar tension is magnified, not diminished. And all this competitive tension takes place on the left side of our map.


The right side of our map, on the other hand, is almost apolitical.

It lacks exactly that tension which seems to be the stuff of politics. It does not talk about ratings, statistics, winners, losers.

Of course success and failure, even fiasco, are not unknown in art, music and theater. They can sometimes act as thrill and “spice” in art and music (at least while we still enjoy the excitement of Agonistic energies).

And right here I want to STOP because I hit on a very good word for the Left Side: Agonistic

That would be the adjective, and Agonism the noun.

In this way, all the polarity, quarrels, fighting and wars between left and right can now be moved to the left. They are the New Left. A different kind of Left.

Thus we arrive to a


If is tempting to think in terms of the classic dichotomy Yin And Yang, but I don’t see an obvious correspondence at the moment.

One should not invent unnecessary neologisms but here I feel that we can benefit from two new words.

Agonism would be the first one, our new left side.

The right side, following the logic of having concert as the twin of Agon, could be Concordism, our new right.

AGONISM: Contest, competition, battle
CONCORDISM Concord, friendliness, co-operation
In this way we can continue talking and thinking about left and right. We can still look down on our hands, but see a new meaning in them.

The old left and right (battling, competing, warring, explosive) would both be included in the New Left side. While the New right would be a largely unwritten page, leaving us with new hopes, giving new aspirations and new optimism.

Part 7

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