In my new project on water as an archaeological object I have already jumped into my first case study in an effort to get a firmer grasp of object oriented ontology (ooo). This first case study is supposed to become an article sometime in the near future.
It is as a fluid we have been used to conceptualize water. Water has become synonymous with the fluidity of the world of becoming. Heraclitus famously stated that “no man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man”. In this perspective time and sometimes even space flows just like water. Water has been a substance difficult to control as it leaks, evaporates, flood, etc. Its lines of flight have been many.
In this article, and in my project overall, I attempt to use this liquid to turn things upside down, to stop the habit of seeing it as a flow. What happens if we see it as an object isolated from its relations to its own past and to other entities, with withdrawn qualities? Water can become part of a greater object that remains intact despite its internal changes. The hydrological cycle can be conceptualized as a hyper–objectthat is widely distributed in time and space. Local manifestations never reveal the whole object itself. Rain drops falling in Yo’okop’s aguada reveals part of this cycle but we never experience the hydrological cycle itself. The “cycle” itself is not a fluid, its exteriority does not change. Nowhere and everywhere will you find the hydrological cycle. The real hydrological cycle is hidden and withdrawn so it is only the sensual object we encounter when rain falls, water runs down hills and mixes with the aguada water, the sun evaporates aguada water to join the clouds above.
Human bodies take part of the hydrological cycle as 2/3 of our body temporarily keeps water bound up into other objects. When we sweat, urinate, bleed, vomit, becomes dehydrated, dies, etc. this is part of the greater hydrological cycle as well.
In this article and in the greater case study (I will also deal with caves), the hyper-object of water cycle will face other hyper-objects. Such a hyper-object of interest here is kingship or ajawlel. These two hyper-objects are crucial in the settlement layout, inscriptions and iconography of the object known as Yo’okop. In short, the archaeological site of Yo’okop will be seen from a hydrocentric perspective rather than the traditional anthropocentric perspective.