desire, diagram, future, language, life, machine, ontology, outside, philosophy, thinking

Implosion

Philosophy begins in aporia, with a paradox or inconsistent consensus. Thus, the most ancient metaphysical figure, which we also recognize as the most simple, the shadow of the parasite upon the unconscious: a thought which denies and provokes, which produces a paradox through its utterance, through its very way of existing. Precisely, then: a prohibition which prohibits its paradox from being thought. The most ancient trope of philosophy begins and ends with this “must,” which exceeds its limit, and so cannot “seriously” be interpreted as a prohibition. But now what does this injunction become? It functions as a portent — a premonition: do not think this now, but perhaps some day. Thus a portent in the precise sense that the paradox prohibits itself from being resolved, and so remains inextricably open, ex-posed to an outside of thought — to a possible future. A denial of the impossible — which follows as a necessary consequence of the possible. Thus the prohibition is not a “discipline” of mind but a rigorous passivity or vulnerability which allows the compulsion of a result, even against the heart’s own desires. Hence the labor, and danger, of thought.

The prohibition barring the very Thought is a portent in the literal sense that it proclaims the immanent Reality it simultaneously denies. The world is swept away and transfigured, merely by a breath, a word, a thought: the originary paradox of becoming, already giving birth to both those of language and being, of discourse and discipline. The philosopher’s stone is only an implosion; to philosophize is to make legible this indecipherable transformation, to reveal this uncanny origin of writing, and to uncover the divergent roots of sensation and signification: in short philosophy’s task today is to crack itself open… Philosophy is a vulnerability, not a power but precisely a humility before thought, a restrained reason which is finally capable of inventing a way out of the black hole, of engendering immanent becomings… We are only beginning to diagram this machine. Philosophy sometimes realizes itself to be one with its result, and poses the question of its foundational prohibition in rigorous terms as the force of a concept: this “strange” energy attending the donation of signs. We may well ask: why are we continually returning, or rediscovering this result, this symptom? Reality itself become symptom; of what origin is this “hidden” glare, this resonance, this infinite inter-mediation, this fold?

An odd but simple paradox which is immediately the production of an entire system of mixtures, a complex and diversely-constituted assemblage, rigorously but madly constructed — axiomatic and diagrammatic by turns. A machinic immanence, where we had thought to discover life; and a new humanity, where we had “only” thought to invent machines. We are moving outwards from the middle of language, turning towards an outside. The essence of language is not this journey but the sound of pure silence, the tension of the saying without a “said,” which indicates a unique vulnerability before truth: the sincerity or truthfulness which is the very donation of the sign itself; thus beyond essence or before being, this giving without a given, this ambiguity.

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aristocracy, Christianity, evaluation, evil, good, human, judgment, life, morality, nobility, origin of language, power, psychoanalysis, question, reality, subject, the future, utility, value

Evaluating Value

Under what conditions did men invent for themselves these value judgments good and evil? And what inherent value do they have? Have they hindered or fostered human well-being up to now? Are they a sign of some emergency, of impoverishment, of an atrophying life?

Or is it the other way around—do they indicate fullness, power, a will for living, courage, confidence, the future?

Friedrich Nietzsche, Preface to the Genealogy of Morals

Why is this work a genealogy of morals? Nietzsche does not ask for the origins of good and evil as essences. Nor even does he ask for the conditions of possibility for good and evil as judgments. In fact, he proposes a third and entirely more subtle question, concerning the “conditions” under which these value judgments (“good” and “evil”) were first invented — he presumes that they were invented by human beings — and perhaps owing to this assumption, he immediately turns to question the inherent value of these value judgments themselves. To be precise, he asks what inherent value they possess — whether, for instance, they have so far hindered or fostered human beings.

We already grasp here in rough outline a critique of the metaphysics of morality — what we may perhaps call an extrusion of the irrational “core” or “substrate” of moral valuations — which seeks to question the value of morality itself. To put it briefly, this “question mark so black” asks about the worth of the “unegoistic,” the value of the pity-instinct — in short, it questions the value of ascetic values. The problem of pity is not an isolated question mark, but in fact demands a critique of moral values whose first object is to question the very value of these values. In other words, we need “a knowledge of the conditions and circumstance out of which these values grew, under which they have developed and changed” — the kind of knowledge which not only has not been available until now, but has not even been wished for.

The value of moral values has been taken as given, self-evident, beyond dispute — i.e., that “good” men are more valuable than “evil” men — but Nietzsche asks us to pause before common sense, and consider the possibility that the opposite were true: “What if in the ‘good’ there lay a symptom of regression, something like a danger, a seduction, a poison, a narcotic, something which makes the present live at the cost of the future?”

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breath, celan, expression, flowers, growth, heidegger, humboldt, inorganic life, intensity, language, life, light, organism, speech, spirit

Speaking (of) Flowers…

The stone.
The stone in the air, which I followed.
Your eye, as blind as the stone.

We were
hands,
we baled the darkness empty, we found
the word that ascended summer:
flower.

Flower – a blind man’s word.
Your eye and mine:
they see
to water.

Growth.
Heart wall upon heart wall
adds petals to it.

One more word like this word, and the hammers
will swing over open ground.

Paul Celan, “Flower”

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art, counter-symmetry, creativity, culture, difference, divinity, enlightenment, equilibrium, history, image, information, life, nature, noise, probability, revolution, Science / Mathematics / Technology, separation, symmetry, war machine

The Future of Information

In reality, goals are absent.

Nietzsche

Rivalry is only a spectacle; it is the state of appearance. Equilibrium is phenomenal, and the distance is real. The law of opposition belongs to phenomenology; the law of irreversibility or of falling downstream is real. Behind all representation.

Michel Serres

A Genealogy of Modern Science
Science appears to begin with the Greeks: somehow, somewhere, a resentful pre-scientific impulse begins to criticize the unity of life and culture. Some say that before this interruption, there must be an alien infiltration (the arguments for Oriental contributions to Greek culture,) but ultimately the “true” source is irrelevant, for it is this real criticism, this faithful engagement with the material culture, with everyday life, that is at once of the greatest importance, that is the authentic germ of enlightenment (Greek or otherwise.) For this criticism already contains a larval critique of creativity, of society, and most important for the development of a scientific instinct, a criticism of divinity and images. By Plato and Aristotle, science will separate itself completely from creativity, from works of the imagination and from art. Plato’s criticism of images (what we would call “advertising”) is well-known; Kant’s rejection of the empirical as a source for truth reproduces the same critique in reverse. In short, it is by rigorously separating life and culture that science discovers itself positively (i.e., as this objective dissocation, this symmetrically dis-sociative personality.)

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abyss, autopoeisis, chaos, creation, death, decay, deviance, fecundity, health, inevitability, libido, life, machine, nature, parasite, space, symbiosis, Thought

Liquid Generations: Decay, Creation and Morphogenesis


Flow

The moment of death is uncertain and inevitable; its shadow approaches from an unknown region like a silent stranger. Death does not need to follow us; it just meets us where we will be. Like a memory fragmenting, bodies rush towards singular points of annihilation, just as the very possibility of negation is implied by the presence of the law. Protection is absurd, insulation a pure minimum; there is but the most fragile and insufficient veil between ourselves and our vulnerabilities.

Even laughter is a deflective shield for the futile anxiety over this very insufficiency. The subject exhausts its becoming and dies; thus until death he is not composed of a lack but indeed an overflowing surplus, of new expressive modalities, energy transformation-processes, event encoding/decoding regimes. Death crumbles the ground beneath us; it is the pure undecodable, it is a decoding space, a pure body with organs, a body full of pulsating acephalous organisms.
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being, infinity, life, music, observer, sense, universe

Living and Being


Fantasio
(You can find more of his and other excellent original artwork here.)

Life explodes and bursts ontological boundaries in its rampant and chaotic proliferation. But does life transcend being? If so, we must understand such a transcendence in the erasure of the gap between ontological layers, or in the ‘splits’ between, and productive of, generations. Such gaps are ‘magically’ or ‘miraculously’ mended by fecundity.

Being, on the other hand, never truly carries multiple names. As Deleuze emphasizes it is only ever spoken of in one sense. Yet life, if it ex-ists, must speak on uncountably many ontological layers simulatenously. If it is being which stretches and folds, that is, whose curvature is produced by motion– then it must collapse under a folding which converges geodesics (metrically differential spaces.) Being is folded into itself, but is only itself– which is why it cannot bear being stretched or folded without decomposing into fractal spaces: the universe of the observer.

Life, which is the highest expression of the autopoetic force, is an unfolding and self-organizing, and therefore fractally active on an infinitely complex though immanent field. Language exemplifies this sort of transcendence-within-immanence. Words are alive though language appears to enjoy an independent existence. The independent perspective is not to be found in the transparency of sense, nor the opacity of the text, nor even of the pure a-signifiying bodies around which the texts are adjoined. The independence of language from its referent is an illusion, just as the independence of perception from a subject is a rather transparent illusion.

Sensation itself is political, so nothing is neutral. Only our hypocrisy, or desire to maintain an illusory distance, is universal. This leads us to believe that a scientific study of sense would be a sort of pseudology. We call simulation the essence of the sensical because of this illusion, sense founds itself violently, through a sort of a-signifying pseudo-bifurcation. Life itself in the contamporaneity of fractally divergent ontological zones presents simulation as such, that is– a decoding… which encodes.

Nothing escapes this.

Our very being is overcoded. Our lives are seemingly free, yet we are enslaved to the sociopolitical responsibilities of speaking. Even the creative energy which animates our bodies is treated as a sort of universal commodity, for sale on the open market. No aspect of our life or existence is free from political influence, from the process of producing separation by subdivision. No sensation as such is a-political, because sense is a differential articulation of masses.

Sense is simulation because life suffocates in ontological isolation and only exercises power, only draws surplus value from a coincident inter-relation of ontologically distinct realities, which may fractally resemble one another, but then again–may not.

In fact this fractal self-similarity is really only characteristic of the ontological unity of the immanent field of existence, which as such can only be spoken of in a single sense. There are not and could not be multiple ontologically distinct realities.

Yet life multiplies realities as independent unities, and thus all life (and sensation) in inextricably political. Life coordinates topologically complex ontological arrangements. Sense is a science of rigorous hypocrisy because living is social. Perhaps life is even ultimately one, but such that it is a one which could never be actualized as a univocity of being. Life articulates its organiazation on infinitely many layers and levels at once. We even say: life organizes the empty spaces of a mechanistic universe into an instrument for song

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