In this part of my life, I have focused on exploring the history of experience. (For the artistic part of my life see here.) First, I have devoted myself to the concept of experience. And I have written a number of essays and books about it. Experience is the way we get in touch with reality. Yet there are many varieties of experience: sensory perception, imagination, fantasy, thinking etc. These varieties have something in common, because they are all a kind of conscious participation.
Eventually I found that humanity had not mastered all varieties right from the start. Instead, they have evolved gradually in the course of history. And this discovery inspired me to look at the history of experience more closely. Therefore, I wanted to know how the structure of experience has evolved from deep history to the present day. Finally, I found a total of nine changes. The first of them took place in the Paleolithic Age. It was the turn from unconscious information processing to conscious perception. And the most recent one was the discovery of the unconscious. In between there are seven more experiential turns. So the ”History of Experience” is about the tribal history of human experience.
These experiential turns affect all areas of existence: the course of individual lives as well as human history, the dynamics of culture, political order and ecology alike. Currently, I am finishing a book that gives an account of this experiential evolution and a novel reading of human history.
In 2018, I outlined my main theses in an essay entitled “History and Experience”.