In the declining symbolic order „practice” was understood mainly as the execution of a theoretical concept, whereas „theory” was considered superior. We do not accept this dualism.
A contradiction between theory and practice can exist only if action is misunderstood as manufacturing, and ideas are considered to be something that has to be implanted through certain techniques, methods, and programs into reality according to a given picture. The idea that to take action means to solve a problem—repair a defect or fabricate a product – comes from this logic of production.
We can approach a good life only through practice, or better yet practices, forms of action that are closely linked to reflection on these practices and their implications. Practices are invented when people agree to try doing something different than before, and later consider the changes that have resulted from that new approach (pause for thought), and continuously reshape this practice in accordance with the quality of the experiences during the process of change.
Practice, therefore, does not mean working out certain programs in advance and then implementing them step by step, but acting in the world while being aware of the fact that the outcome is always unpredictable and unplannable.
One practice the women’s movement of the 1970s invented was to meet only among women. This practice has triggered many important changes. But where it became a dogma, where women regarded separatism as a solution to all their problems with the other sex and persistently adhered to it, this practice no longer contributed to developing society towards a good life for all.