I always wonder why the modern people celebrate a new year. And why many people wish to do something in the special moment like a new year. As a tradition, a new year is celebrated in various way. Yesterday, many people in Jakarta celebrated a new year with fireworks and firecrackers. They come together in around National Monument with their relatives. They watched musical performance and dance. In other side of Jakarta, i hear a news about many people who celebrate new year with pray. Maybe this is a spiritual way to encounter a new moment.
In the middle of a new year night, i watched the news about tradition to celebrate new year in many culture. The people in United States come to Manhattan and enjoyed the celebration. But i shocked when watched a news about Korean people who celebrated new year with sex party. Wow!
Maybe we live in crazy century which usually never gives an explanation about why and how. We have done some activities without reason or an explanation. We just flow like the river and follow the desire in our heart. But how social scientist explained this phenomenon?
I ever read Cultural Contradiction of Capitalism which was written by Daniel Bell. Bell says that there is always a contradiction between economic and cultural in modern people’s way of thinking. In the day, we live with economic principal like rationalism and economical thrift. We work hard to get much money. But in the night, sometimes we spend all of our money in entertainment sections. Entertainment is like a prime need for modern people that makes them to earn more money and to satisfy themselves. Bell says this is a cultural principal. And he also says that both economical and cultural principal always compete and fight in modern people mind.
We sometimes wonder why many people spend all of money in a new year’s party. They want to release their tired, to enjoy themselves, and to celebrate the freedom from the cage in work activity in the day. According to Daniel Bell, the modern people interpret a new year’s moment as catharsis to release their tired and unpleasant feeling in the day. Are you agree with me?