Indeed, we must recognize that the feasible utopia is the one that has inspired the most, the one that has motivated and driven the most to action. Even though sometimes it is not achievable due to the effective conditions that exist in society. However, it has always been a motivational resource, an axiological repository of reasons to fight, to work, to act and even to live. That is why it has been so important for man, who seems to be, by essence, utopian. Hence the interest that he arouses in us, and that is why we will dedicate our attention to him.


 Various definitions of utopia have been given, some pejorative, others positive. But, in general, and without relying on these qualifications, we can say that utopia is the construction of an ideal society that tears us away from the reality, sometimes so deplorable, in which we live. It is an exercise of the imagination, which is why it is considered something typical of our collective imagination, of the social and cultural imagination. Indeed, we are always building utopias, albeit small ones. They are something natural to man. Utopia has been viewed negatively when it leads to unrealizable things or, conversely, when it leads to things that can be achieved but are bad, as has happened especially recently. They have imagined societies in which men lack freedom, dignity, etc. However, here we will focus on the utopia that has more overtones of goodness and that, likewise, does not seem far from reality, that is, from being carried out here on Earth. Seen in this way, utopia is a product of creative imagination, not mere wild fantasy, although it can sometimes be. In it, human beings express their desire to get out of the deplorable situation and build a better world. Sometimes it is given a negative or pejorative meaning, as a false illusion, or escape from the world that commits us, but it must also be seen as an ideal as well as a commitment to change reality. It seems that utopia is something typical of the human being. For some, it is even an index of freedom, since it arises from rebelling against the specific situation in which one lives. For this reason, we find that utopias are perspectives of liberation because they mark paths towards an improvement of the situation in which we find ourselves. But, for that very reason, they are symbols, they are models of man, which we want to achieve, to realize ourselves as humans. That is why they are symbols. They have a symbolic force, they mark directions, they contribute values, and they give meaning. That is the main thing about utopia. Although it has been compared to ideology, understood as false consciousness, or inverted consciousness and falsification of reality, utopia is not a misconception, since it knows that it is not real. It is, rather, the attempt to overcome what is given, it is a cry to heaven, to achieve an improvement of what one actually has. It is aspiring to the ideal.


 Utopianism has, moreover, a long history. In ancient times, Plato's Republic is well known, although his utopia is rather contained in another of his dialogues, The Laws. And he even alludes to an ideal society, which was that of Atlantis, in his Critias dialogue. But above all these ideals were given in modernity. Notoriously in the Renaissance. The most famous is the one that gives its name to the genre, which is Utopia, by Thomas More. It is said that he undertook it after studying The City of God, by Saint Augustine. He also knew, of course, as the good humanist that he was, the Republic of Plato. It is said that More wrote this utopia because he was dissatisfied with the real situation in England. The landowners, instead of cultivating the land with various products, such as cereals, preferred to plant pastures since this served to feed the sheep, which gave them more profit. With this, they took work away from the peasants, who were forced to go to the cities and dedicate themselves to begging or stealing. The work is entitled De optimo reipublicae statu deque nova insula Utopia, published in. "Utopia" meant "No Place", and was the name of an island discovered on one of Amerigo Vespucci's voyages. There was no private property, so it has been considered communism. Oreo and silver, which were used for very vile instruments, were not appreciated. All the inhabitants cultivated the land, and every two years they changed their peasant work. That's why no one was idle. In addition to being farmers, they all had some other trade. His work lasted only six hours, under the supervision of magistrates, called sifograntos. What time they had left they occupied with reading and recreation, and studied mainly philosophy and natural sciences. They all had religion, but the modality was tolerated. Indeed, they all believed in God, but each worshiped him in his own way.

Rational principles are synthesized in the belief in a creator and provident God, in the immortality of the soul, and in the rewards and punishments in the afterlife. The only thing that was not tolerated was preaching against divine providence and human immortality. That is why some have seen More as the antecedent of deism and religious naturalism. But others, more judiciously, have seen it as presenting man as naturally Christian and ready to receive the Gospel. Some have said that More's utopia had its origin in the discovery of that new world described by Amerigo Vespucci. That's funny because he even had attempts at realization in America. One of them was that of Bartolomé de las Casas, in Cumaná (1521), but it failed. The other, better known and more lasting, was that of Don Vasco de Quiroga since it is said that his town hospitals wanted to be an application of the work of Moro. In fact, Silvio Zavala reports an annotated copy from the hand of that bishop of Michoacán. Likewise, the reductions of Paraguay were given as a utopian enterprise, carried out for a time. There were others, such as The City of the Sun, by Campanella, a very strange utopia, which even speaks of the metaphysics that would be found in it8. He wrote it in prison in 1602 and it was published in Frankfurt in 1623, which he translated into Latin as Civitas Solis in 1629. It is inspired by Plato's Republic and More's Utopia. It deals with the island of Trapobana, on the equator, to which a Genoese sailor arrived and narrates it to the Grand Master of the Hospitaller Knights, in a dialogue. It gave the impression of a monastery, divided into seven quarters. On a hill in the center was the temple of the sun, which was worshiped as an image of divinity. It was a theocratic and communist hierarchy. It was like a natural religion. The power, which was political and religious, was held by Hoh, prince, and priest, who was the supreme metaphysician and theologian, a kind of sun, a reflection of the absolute unity of God. Three ministers received authority from him, corresponding to the three primalities that Campanella postulated in his system: Pon (power), had force and war, Sin (wisdom), he had sciences, arts, and industries, and Mor (love), he was touched by economic problems and the regulation of marriages. Other judges and priests followed. Everything was in common, without private property. They were assigned a room, but they were changed every six months, to avoid attachment. They ate in the community, in silence so that instructional books could be read. Jobs were assigned, four hours a day, and the rest of the time was spent reading, discussing, walking, and cultivating the arts and philosophy. Marriages and births were regulated, and there were no families. Men and women were equal, with the same jobs and military service. The children were given an intuitive education, using a lot of engravings and paintings of historical figures, maps, plants, animals, etc. They had ships that sailed with propulsive devices and machines that flew to the stars. The religion of these citizens was natural, but ready for Christianity, which, according to Campanella, only added the sacraments. They worshiped the sun, prayed to the four cardinal points, and had a confession. It was done with the priests, these with the triumvirs and these with the great metaphysician, and this one with God. It was a way of being informed of everything that was happening in that society. Another was The New Atlantis (London, 1627), by Francis Bacon, who picks up this Platonic legend and exposes it in a little unfinished work. It is an island where experimentation is practiced to apply science and technology for the benefit of society. They have machinery and laboratories to improve agriculture, mining, etc. They talk about the purpose of all this:

“The purpose of our establishment is the knowledge of the hidden causes and movements of things, and extend the limits of the human empire to effect all things possible”

  It is in the ideal of the other works of Bacon, on the experience at the service of man, according to what "Knowledge is power". And there are many more utopias. Simply in England, there were several others. Closer in time, we remember a very famous one by Aldous Huxley, namely, Brave New World (1932); only that it is a pessimistic vision of the future, a negative utopia, which speaks of a world to come, in which psychological conditioning will be used and with a society with very rigid castes. And another ─in this line of psychological conditioning─ is that of the behavioral psychologist B. F. Skinner, Walden two (1948), which parodied the work of the American romantic thinker Henry David Thoreau, Walden, or life in the woods, in which he extols the human existence in nature. Only Skinner's utopia was a life in the concrete woods, d Theology consisted of some modern cities. There he applied his behavioral psychology, which conditioned people, in the line of his other work: Beyond dignity and freedom. That is to say, it was a utopia of society with happy (but not happy) men, due to psychological conditioning so that they would do what they were told and thus be happy. Karl Mannheim has philosophized about utopia in his book Ideology and Utopia, 1929. It is a book that wants to be an introduction to the social sciences. There he defines ideology and utopia. He turns ideology from a negative to a positive meaning. That is to say, it moves away from the pejorative meaning of ideology on the part of Marx, as well as from the negative vision of utopia on the part of Marxism, which spoke of utopian socialism as opposed to scientific socialism, which was precisely Marxist15. He also speaks of a utopian mentality, which response to man's wishes, to oppose his bad situation and improve it. He distinguishes four forms of utopian mentality:

 1) the orgiastic chiliasm of the Anabaptists; 

2) the liberal humanitarian idea;

 3) the conservative idea and 

4) the socialist-communist.

 But he surpasses even that, since he speaks of new utopias, but closer to reality, that is, lighter, less orgiastic. He has also recently dealt with Paul Ricoeur's utopia, precisely in a conference on ideology and utopia. He reviews the notion of ideology in Marx, Weber, Mannheim, Althusser, Habermas, and Geertz. He also reviews the concept of utopia, in Mannheim, Saint-Simon, and Fourier. But the most important thing is what he puts in the opening lecture, in which he says that, although ideology and utopia belong to opposite poles, both are products of the social and cultural imagination. In our Mexican media, Horacio Cerutti has dealt with utopia, and has dedicated several books to the study of it: Essays on utopia, I and II (Toluca, UAEM, 1989); From various utopian (Essays on utopia, III, Bogotá: Central University, 1989); Omen and topic of discovery (Essays on utopia, IV, Mexico: UNAM, 1991); Utopia is commitment and responsible task (Essays on Utopia, V, Monterrey: CECYTE, 2010). Cerutti walked in Marxism, and those who were of that current have maintained their ideals of equality and justice, so that hard dedication to the study of utopia does not surprise me. Perhaps these intellectuals, after condemning utopian socialism ─contrasted with scientific socialism─, realized that all socialism is utopian, perhaps for the same reason as scientific and that it is not easy to achieve. There are also critics of utopia, some who have questioned them, considering them unrealizable. For example, we can mention Robert Spaemann, who goes against the modern utopia of absolute freedom, detached from any domain. He says that a rational power will always be needed to limit freedoms and control them so that society is not affected. He also questions the utopia of the good ruler, which has existed since Plato, and is currently maintained by Habermas, but assures that this is no more than a lofty ideal. Also in the philosophy of liberation, utopia has been criticized, but it is unrealizable. They usually establish a principle of feasibility. As it has Marxist inspiration, perhaps that is why some of its exponents see utopia as that of utopian socialism, that is, unfulfillable, and reject it. Thus Franz Hinkelammert wrote a Critique of Utopian Reason, in which he says: “Perfect knowledge of all the facts of interdependent human social relation is impossible. This impossibility is as valid for each one of the human beings as for any human group”. For this reason, in the same line of liberation, Enrique Dussel adds the claim of feasibility, a principle of compliance, so that a utopia that can be realized is proposed. If an ethical or political proposal is true and valid, it is still not good for that, it has to be practicable, and it must be feasible. This principle of Dussel, of feasibility, is very analogical, surely along the lines of his analytics, that is, a dialectic animated by analogy, or an analogy mobilized by dialectics since in this way utopia will have a metaphorical face. , which is the one that pulls towards equivocation, to the mere idea, but also a metonymic face, which ties it to the earth, to reality, which tends towards univocity, towards concrete and firm reality. The theme of utopia deserves our attention since it expresses the collective imagination, the social and cultural imagination, which is very powerful. It is somehow what drives us to move forward in existence.


 Utopia is something very analogical. It is like a parable. The great semiotician Algirdas Julien Greimas said that the parable was a linguistic resource.analog character icon. It is used to indirectly say what is meant. Well, this is the way of utopia, a kind of metaphor for what we want as a reality. If the metaphor is a change of meaning based on similarity, in utopia we find a change of realities, also based on similarity, but with man, that is, what would be most suitable for him. Analogy means, in Greek, proportion, it is what the Latins translated as proportion. And utopia is something very analogical because it describes what man would want for himself, the ideal to which he aspires, and what he believes is proportional, and proportionate to his own nature or essence. The analogy of utopia is again shown by the fact that it is a model of reality, or a model of society, or of the man himself, a paradigm in which he recognizes himself, and which he yearns for. It has the force of the icon, of the iconic sign, namely, that in a fragment it shows us the whole. This is because in each utopia man projects his essence, the totality of his nature. It was also said that utopia is a symbol, an image that man makes of himself. And it is that he has the symbolic capacity to unite around him those who aspire to that new, different reality. It is a symbol in the sense of the richest sign, it is what the icon is in the American school of semiotics, as for Peirce. It is the richest sign for the European school, Cassirer, Mircea Eliade, Kerenyi, Paul Ricoeur. Indeed, utopia has the power and strength of the final cause: it does not yet exist, and yet it moves and us, polarizes us towards it. It even makes those who are looking for her offer their lives for her, as happened with many Marxists. It is a teleological force, which motivates us to live, and makes existence advance. Positive utopia is like a poem. It makes us vibrate, even if it's not true. It encourages us to continue, makes us put aside laziness, abandon indolence, and decide for life, for its defense, care, and promotion. That is why utopia has to be achievable, it is the one that best suits a man. The unrealizable fills the imagination but leaves our sense of reality, our realism, empty. We need realistic utopias, which commit us to their achievement because they have overtones of reality because they appear to us as attainable. Social reality often disappoints us. This is when we need to resort to utopia. She gives hope. On the one hand, it questions the given, denounces its injustices, its lack of peace; but, on the other hand, it makes us want to achieve it, and it motivates us to make efforts. Utopia, as many have told us, is the result of social and cultural imagination, it is a construct of fantasy. It is a product of the social imaginary, which gives the impression that it always has to be building castles in the air. It is something that accompanies us, that constitutes us. It's a way of not letting ourselves be defeated by the sad reality that is imposed on us. To this valley of tears, which is the world, we oppose the earthly paradise, which we want here on earth, in this life. It is our refuge against pain, our resistance against death An analogical hermeneutics makes us have utopias, but feasible, stretches us towards the ideal but tied to the real. To the metaphorical part of the human being, which raises him up to heaven, but also to the metonymic part of him, which ties him to the earth. It combines utopian socialism with scientific socialism. It proposes, as Dussel thinks, a sustainable, achievable utopia. That's what will make it good, ultimately. And it is that utopian thinking is critical thinking. Utopia arises from a critique of reality, from discontent and disagreement with what is given. It is what shows that we have freedom, the freedom to disagree, to find that what we have does not coincide with what we want. It does not meet our expectations. When we elaborate on something beyond what there is, we go to what we think there should be. It is to go from being to having to be. That is why the accusation of naturalistic fallacy has fallen, out of pure disrepute, at that step, from the descriptive to the evaluative. It would occur in utopia, which is so necessary. It is an index that we are continually valuing when describing, that we spend our time moving from what is to what should be. Utopias are, of course, social; and in that, they carry their moral and political content. More moral than political, because here the political serves to make the moral concrete. But it also has an anthropological content. It reveals a conception of man. For now, utopia is based on philosophical anthropology in which man can be critical, he has the freedom to dream; Even when he was subjugated, he manifests himself as capable of deliberation that makes him free despite the oppressive conditions in which he finds himself. And perhaps even oppression helps him because that is when he most needs help when more utopias are elaborated. Utopia arises from disproportion, that is, from feeling that what exists is not well proportioned to man, because it is too sad, or meaningless. However, the bad, false or unfulfillable utopia is because it is disproportionate for man. After all, it is unattainable. In this way, it only remains to aspire to a utopia proportionate to the human being, that is proportional to him so that he can build it and speak it. For that, you need to know human nature, to know what is well proportioned to it. And the proportion is the analogy; That is why I think that the analogy must be typical of utopia, that a good utopia arises from the application of an analogical hermeneutic, first, to the human being and, later, to what one wants to build for him, to see if it is convenient for him. It is not going to be that, for not having the warning of what is human, we are incapable of thinking of a good utopia, within the reach of man, feasible; and, of course, that it be beautiful, and it will be so precisely because it will have the exact proportion that corresponds to him. It is what will mark the difference between a utopia in a pejorative sense, that is, as something unattainable, and a utopia in an optimistic sense, feasible and attainable, within the reach of man. It is what makes a utopia human, and it is what makes the human being truly utopian. Because we need utopia to be human because we always require something that makes us move forward, but with meaning, with a defined and well-planned direction. But, in addition to the meaning, it must have a reference, that is, it must be fulfilled in reality. A utopia needs to have meaning and reference. Sense, so that it points to something positive, morally good, that makes man happy; and it must have a reference, that is, applicability or the possibility of being carried out in reality, not remaining in what is only possible. 


 We have traveled to Utopia, that is, to nowhere, and we have wandered through it. We do it with the imagination because it is something that does not yet exist in the concrete, but in the abstract. It is the ideal that surpasses the real. It always tends to be realized, but it does not always succeed. There are feasible utopias and others that are not. Yet they move us. They make us live, they give us meaning for existence; that sense we call hope. Utopia is a cause, with that causality of teleology, of the final, which tends to take shape and, even when it does not yet exist, makes us act. The final cause is the one that directs all other causes. It's a mystery. From the real non-existence, only ideal or mental, he builds reality. It drives us to build it. It gives meaning to our existence. That is why it has been important to look at the concept of utopia, since it has such a fundamental role in human life, in social existence. We never stop dreaming, projecting our desires into ideals that we build, and utopias are one of the channels through which they find a way out. And sometimes fulfillment. Because we need the reality principle, in addition to the pleasure principle, so that our desires are not diluted in the air, but are fulfilled on earth.