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Sunday, 30 September 2018

Deictic Absolutes 4

In two recently published articles I sketched two elements of the book - indexicalism as a paradoxico-metaphysics and the problem with speculation.

Deictic Absolutes 3

Another part - the bit on Proximity.
Proximity is about what is almost the same but not quite. It could be a species of the genre 'almost' if the latter is a genre of the order of the other.

When we depart from sameness, proximity is the sole guide and in that sense it is a projection of sameness into the other. Friendship is often thought as a figure of proximity: Aristotle thought friends were one soul in two bodies and Montaigne thought friends have everything in common and responsibilities between them are no longer felt as such. Bojana Kunst understands friendship as a departure of the sameness of my identity – of the idiocy of my own endeavors. An interruption. It is through those who are in proximity that I find my neighborhood

I can only cease to be an idiot if I find somebody who is like me, who is almost the same. What we have here is a kind of a paradox: I cannot find who I am only with myself, yet I can find who I am with somebody who is almost like me [...]1

Proximity points towards the minimal exterior – towards what is slightly out there. A small variation and, in that sense, what comes in a small distance. The near, in that sense, is the next. Friendship, as Kunst and others notice, is both the actual form of proximity and a consequence of it. Proximity is both a requisite and an expression of friendship. It is as if there were friendship before friendship – as if the actualization of friendship were an act of friendship. Friendship helps making clear that proximity is both a state and an event; it is an event prefigured in a state – or rather, in other events.

Indexicals are about what is near – this, that and the Other are close to me, located around where I am, found from the position I occupy. Proximity contrasts with a view from nowhere. The horizon of an interiority is constituted by an indexical environment from where what is real appears; I am the center of the environment, but a center cannot dispense with what is in my proximity. Proximity, what is nearby, close, in the (indexical) neighborhood, constitutes an interiority.

The notion of proximity (proximité) is central in Levinas' Autrement qu'être. There, it is articulated with the notions of substitution and recurrence. Proximity points at whoever comes after me, the one that will follow me and in that sense will substitute me. The Other is in my proximity because it is the Other that substitutes me, the Other that steps on my shoes. In general, proximity is a condition for substitution: one can replace wine more easily with grape juice than with peach juice, someone close to me can replace me in a decision-making meeting, lilacs can be used to replace purple better than brown. Similarly, the Other in the proximity could be having the piece of bread I'm eating. Substitution is also the starting point of Levinas conception of a subjectivity not as an identity but as recurrence: I am replaced by the Other and then I start a journey back to where I was.2 There is no agenda of mine pushing through a substitution and a recurrence.

The Other is present in me in a proximity that triggers a responsibility: the scope of what I care for is not my own body, but my proximity. A subjectivity is not oriented towards itself, it is rather oriented towards what is close. The position in which it is situated is not structured as a center where there is a self and a periphery where an (indexical) environment circumscribes the center. On the one hand, there is no (substantive) identity in the center closed off from what is in its proximity. On the other, there is always a returning point where the center of the subjectivity is available. More than a governing capital, this center is more like a refuge. The middle point between the two poles is what makes subjectivity a recurrence: it is not a position separated from what there is in the proximity but it is a place to return. In that sense, it is a returning point maybe like a homeland that one returns to with a different mind after the journey, rather than an identity. The movements of a subjectivity within the space in its proximity is that of incomplete return. Proximity is a constitutive part of a subjectivity. Further, subjectivity requires proximity; subjectivity becomes hostage to proximity. The plot of being called by the Other and being substituted – and eventually recurring to me which has now become different from my point of departure – takes place in the proximity. Since indexicalism understands an interiority along the lines Levinas conceives of a subjectivity, the indexical environment is what is in my proximity.

Proximity is alien to descriptions. It is not a family, a tribe, a physical neighborhood that is in the proximity – it cannot be described in substantive terms. Friendship is an approximation. What is nearby is precisely what happens to be the nearby – attempting at a description of proximity dismantles proximity.3 The presence of the Other in my environment is not something that engages with my thinking that would open what is outside to my own sovereignty. Rather, the Other towards whom the question is asked “n'appartient pas à a sphère intelligible à explorer. Il se tient dans la proximité”.4 Proximity doesn't require thematization or any sort of structured thinking, it precedes thinking in the sense that it is the point of departure. The exterior is present in the proximity precisely because it precedes every engagement of a sovereign effort of addressing a theme – it is the environment from where thinking obtains its focus. Levinas writes that the essential of his thesis is that “la proximité n'est précisément pas une conjunction quelconque de thèmes, une structure que formerait leur superposition”.5 What is in the proximity, is not an object but part of the open structure of subjectivity. The subject is not a closed individual, but a point of departure and return from substitutions that take place at her proximity.

Levinas claims subjectivity appears to thinking as a pronoun.6 Proximity – indexical environment – is where subjectivity becomes what it is. The notion of interiority in indexicalism has a similar structure: interiorities have addresses, points of departure and what is in its proximity form an environment from which deictic operations are brought to the fore. Interiorities are situated; they are never hovering everywhere. They are tied to engagements; they are somewhere.

Precisely because proximité is not structured in terms of the substantive description of a position, Levinas understands it as an-archic. Proximity is not family connections, it is not familiarity either – it is an an-archic force that could be tied to anything nearby.7 Proximity has to do with vulnerability to the surroundings as much as it has to do with responsibility – and the scope of my responsibility is not determined by a substantive description. Levinas makes clear that proximity is not like disorder where a different order could be found if the effort of thematization – the engagement in substantive descriptions – is sufficiently pursued. Proximity is indifferent to thematization and, often, it runs against it. My proximal surroundings are not determined by any substantive description of my position, it is composed by what appeals to me, to what has a capacity to be present in an environment that is neither of my making nor alien to my subjectivity.

Here again the ontological argument of Totalité et Infini can be recalled: what is exterior imposes itself as such within my proximity. The exterior inside proximity comes from no determined place. The anarchy of proximité is the unpredictability of contact: spatial contiguity introduces an element that is forcibly exterior to any organized structure. It is this contiguity that is invoked in the notion of proximity, but Levinas considers that substitution – my neighbor is the one who follows me – is behind contiguity, including spacial contiguity. He wonders whether contiguity itself could be intelligible without a sense of substitution and therefore of justice.8 This anarchic sense of justice is one that evokes the responsibility for what is within the reach of my indexicals – for what is close enough to be pointed. It is an-archic because there are many technologies of contact and many spaces of contiguity. Levinas takes this an-archic justice that gives rise to contiguity to be human. That means that no other subjectivity is crossed by proximity. I'll discuss these restrictions placed by Levinas later; what matters now is to be clear that the anarchy of proximity brings in substitution and therefore the responsibility a subjectivity senses for what is around. Indexicalism takes interiorities to be placed in an environment, and to respond to it. The anarchy of proximity, however, makes sure nothing can be predicted concerning the entrenchment of any interiority: they just happen to cling around.

Heidegger opposes proximity (Nähe) to what knows no distance in his Einblick in was das ist. The Bremen conferences exposes the opposition and the gradual replacement of proximity by Ge-Stell, which can be translated as frame, device, as I shall prefer and with Andrew Mitchell's translation, positionality.9 While proximity is related to attending to the pace of events, positionality is rather a state where what is around becomes at one's disposal. Positionality sets apart all distances, while this brings no nearness. Nähe is about a presence that is not forced, it's about not placing something in a map, but rather wait until it makes itself present. It is akin to having something in one's horizon. In contrast, positionality, like a device, exposes and produces objects placing them in standing reserve. The distinction between proximity and positionality lies in the form things make themselves present – in positionality they present themselves of their own accord. Positionality extracts things from proximity and make them available to be viewed like in a showcase. It is as if it placed things outside a neighborhood to expose it in a way that it could be seen from nowhere.

Positionality is indeed similar to thematization: Heidegger described the gradual passage from proximity to Ge-Stell by the difference between physis and thesis. The former is understood as bringing-here-forth, it is the opening of something closed from itself and therefore like letting something presence of its own accord. Thesis, in contrast, arranges a presence in a position. A stone presenced by physis is arregimented into a staircase and its steps by thesis. Here we see how thesis disguises itself trying to present things as if they presence in the physis way; as if they were in view, exposed, out there of their own accord. Hence, the project behind positionality is to place things in fixed addresses, formulated as much in a de dicto form as possible. While positionality is a conscription, proximity guards things by allowing them to conceal, to retreat and to withdraw from exposure. Heidegger also describes the passage from proximity to positionality as the turning of the world into a Ge-Stell. The latter places the world in danger because things in the world become persecuted, followed, objects of pursuit, in order to be exposed, to be presented against their grain. The effort of thematization is therefore a betrayal of proximity, a departure from a state where things are guarded and present themselves of their own accord.10 Thesis conscript them and place them in a state of exposure where they are available to be seen, to be presented from anywhere and are not near to anything in particular.

Heidegger's account of proximity has some similarities with Levinas'. Above all, he also contrasts proximity with what is available to a view from nowhere where distances are abolished and asymmetrical relations vanish. However thematization (or thesis) is not, for Levinas, a betrayal of proximity – it is precisely where proximity shows its presence and its strength. Mostly because Levinas sees in thematization the effort of saying (dire) and therefore of a diaphonía that makes the Other present. For him, to say that there is an indexical structure behind thematization where there is an inescapable dialogue is not to claim that the dit could possibly cease to exist. Thematization is the locus where the Other and its asymmetrical relation to me is present. Surely, thesis doesn't get detached from dire in a way that it could be the truth-bearer of a totality – the said never exhaust the saying. The relation between them, though, is not one of contrast or of passage where thesis is gradually replacing proximity but rather that thesis is always accompanied by an underlying structure of proximities that is not often explicit. In other words, the Other is present in the way thematization takes place; there is no Other and no indexical structure if there is no effort to claim something. The asymmetrical relations between the different indexicals are inseparable of the efforts in language to thematize – rather than a friction between thesis and proximity, there is a complementarity where the latter expresses itself in the former. Proximity, in the form of saying, requires something being said, something that expresses a claim and at the same time is hostage to a structure where there is an exterior element that makes it inescapably corrigible. Language is a realm of vulnerability – everything is ultimately responsive to an interrupting interlocutor. This account of language where indexicality is always implicitly present but doesn't stand without claims about something is one of the cornerstones of how the Other affects a subjectivity from outside. Further, the idea that the Other cannot be present but through claims that implicitly refer to dialogue and diaphonía anticipate some central tenets of Derrida's deconstruction.11 Although not focused on writing, Levinas espouses the idea that there is a plurality of interlocutors in any act involving language, what is thought or said has an underlying structure of dialogue that is typically expressed in claims.12

Levinas agrees with Heidegger that proximity is not an opening to being but rather an exposition to it.13 This is because proximity exposes the Other – and the indexical structure underlying what is thought and said. The exposition to being, however, doesn't dispense with thematization – thesis is not the opposite of proximity but rather it is where proximity is expressed. Further, Levinas understands experience itself, and the sensible in general, in terms of proximity. While the content of the perception – the outcome of an experience – is already in the order of something said, the sensible itself where experience takes place lies in proximity. Proximity is a relation with the Other, a relation that spells vulnerability and can be described in terms of fruition and wound.14 Sensibility is proximity, it is where things are presented to the perceiver – as Wahl once wrote, perceptual experience is not about explanation but about presentation.15 The Other is presented through sensibility – it is the moment where something exterior makes itself present in one's indexical environment.

By connecting sensibility and proximity – and therefore with the presentation of the Other – Levinas hints at a conception of sensibilia as engaged in contact. It is through exercises of sensibility that indexical environments gain their contents. But they cannot do that indifferent to what is said in experience. Here again we cannot strip the saying from the said: we cannot strip the presentation of something in an indexical environment from what is presented. The indexical structure in the sensible doesn't have a content of its own. The sensible presents the Other with a content, with something said – there is no sensible without exercises of sensibility. Chapter 3 will present a somewhat more detailed conception of sensibility as exposition to the Other. The exposition reveals a deictic structure where what is exterior becomes present. The exposition to being is precisely this revelation of a deictic structure; in other words, the exposition to being is, according to indexicalism, nothing less than the exposition to the deictic structure of what there is. This is what the sensible is capable of doing through proximity. There is no such thing as a proximity content separated from what is thematized; the saying comes with the said. But through proximity, the sensible exposes the indexicals that underlie what is said. In any case, considered in terms of proximity, the sensible as contact is not restricted to the organs of sensibility – it expands to wherever contact takes place, even beyond the limits of human sensibilia.

Deictic Absolutes 2

A first bit of the book in a draft, on speculation and its problems. It contrasts Meillassoux's views with the doctrine recommended by the book - indexicalism, the view that sees deixis as the main components of what there is.
The section is called: After speculation

Meillassoux has his own way to overcome correlationism which is different from the other alternatives he mentions. He intends to seize what is beyond what is for-us. Rejecting any metaphysics of subjectivity, he rejects what is without-us in the sense of being for-the-others and settles for what is in-itself or for-nobody (or rather, for-nothing). It is not enough to embrace what is without-us by being for-someone-else (or for-something-else) – the absolute that is hidden behind any (factual) correlation is for-nothingness.

Meillassoux seeks this for-nothingness precisely in the relation between occultation and facticity. He claims that the absolute is what makes occultation possible, that is facticity. In other words, what is absolute is that reality eludes and therefore there could be anything behind the scenes; what is absolute is the contingent character of everything. If it is a bad (speculative) move to make correlation absolute, it is a recommended (speculative) step to find in the non-transparency of reality grounds to consider contingency itself absolute. The metaphysics of subjectivity in its many varieties find the absolute by taking as a premise what is the surest thing in the age of the correlate – the correlation itself. Given that the absolute cannot be contingent, Meillassoux then takes contingency as a premise to reach the absolute facticity of everything. The ubiquity of contingency is itself a problem for the claim that reality is transparent: everything could be very different from what it appears; it is as if contingency erodes any supposed absolute character of correlation if it entails the transparency of reality.

By confronting correlation and the absolute, Meillassoux contrasts the speculative procedure that starts from the known correlation to reach the pervasive nature of correlation with the speculative procedure that departs from the accepted idea that something is always hidden in a correlation to absolute facticity.

In both cases, the speculative method is in play. In both cases one begins with a well-known or accepted phenomenon and goes beyond it by taking it as an example of something broader. Speculation, like a flight from an airplane in the image Whitehead presents, goes from a certain taking off lane to a less certain and more general view from above beyond what is established.1 Whitehead is also adamant that the better the point of departure the broader the view one reaches. Speculation is a jump towards the unknown that can be corrected afterwards but has no reason to proceed with restrain.

Meillassoux speculative conclusion is that what is absolute and non-correlative (and not only non-human) is the principle that everything is contingent – except the principle, of course. It is the principle that is manifested in the misleading character of any appearance. Correlation itself is an example of the intrinsic link between facticity and reality; nothing is transparent, everything could be something else. Being absolute, the principle is neutral: it is independent of any perspective, standing location or situation, it is taken to be for-nothingness. Through the principle, something absolute can be thought (and known). According to the absolute (and neutral) principle, everything is under its scope; nothing escapes this hyper-chaos.2

This principle that enables a total view is for Meillassoux the right antidote for the predicaments of the age of the correlate. Breaking with the finitude issued by the correlation, one reaches beyond the pale towards a view that is neutral with respect to any subject and total in the sense that it sees everything from nowhere. Meillassoux thinks that the opposite of finitude is a total image of reality where everything is available to speculative eyes. It is as if once one is beyond the level of correlations, one finds a viewpoint without a point and spots things from the Great Outdoors. Such a view from nowhere is strictly speaking not a view from above or from outside, it is a view from the outside of the outside. (Things for-nothingness cannot be accessible but from a view from nowhere.) For such a view, there is no asymmetry left, no nearness; everything is equally exposed, like in a showcase where what matters in the general collection and not any item in particular. An absolute principle with total scope – that is about everything except itself – is the right way to avoid finitude according to Meillassoux. Once accepted the principle, one can say that everything is as contingent as our correlation. Through speculation, one projects the same on the unknown – reduces the Other to the Same, in Levinas' apt phrase.3 In fact, speculation proceeds through specular steps, by means of mirrors where what is already seen is projected in the unseen. There is an element of enumerative induction in speculation: it can reach a totality by means of a projection from a sample that act as a premise. In Meillassoux, there is nothing blocking his principle from having anything else in its scope. His speculative move leads him towards a totality, where a principle has everything else in its scope. The principle entails that any appearance is deceitful, and expose how things for-nothingness are – they are contingent and, in this case, one cannot be deceived. Being absolute, contingency is transparent – it is the transparency that makes sure everything is concealed by their appearances.

The speculative method, however, can be blind to the possibility that exteriority is a better antidote to finitude than totality. What confines us to a correlation is not the lack of a total, sideways-on view, but rather a neutralization of what is exterior. Such a neutralization amounts to a perceived indifference with respect to what is transcending, to what is outer or beyond. Finitude is an incapacity to realize that the Great Outdoors are already fully available in the very borders of our interiority.

From the point of view of the metaphysics of the other, it is precisely totality that prevents any access to the infinite which lies in what is beyond. The infinite is the unlimited, the unbound that borders an interiority from outside. It lies in the Great Outdoors that is the opposite of totality – totality is no more than finitude expanded where asymmetry is minimized to make room for specular relations. If a total view is available, there is no Other, there is no transcendence, there is no situatedness and, what is as unattractive as correlationism, there is no Great Outdoors. To avoid correlationism through an absolute that produces a view from nowhere is to move from a restricted finitude to a broader one – from limitation to full confinement. In contrast, the metaphysics of the others holds that access to the world is always limited not because of our finitude, but rather because the Great Outdoors cannot be anything but infinite.

Meillassoux is clear that not even a God could exorcise the principle of facticity.4 He escapes finitude to reach a totality where interiorities and the external world are equally confined. To be sure. totality is also committed to transparency – if everything can be placed in a showcase, than nothing can be concealed – as in Heidegger's image, everything is under persecution. In the case of the total scope of the principle of facticity, at least the contingency of everything is transparent (as much as their capacity to hide behind the appearances). The total image that supposedly replaces finitude is incapable to cope with the infinite of exteriority – and the occultation that follows suit. From the point of view of exteriority, Meillassoux's move is to surrender to a broader finitude by neutralizing the external world and placing the Great Outdoors inside an expanded version of our confinement.

Harman's object-oriented ontology, as Meillassoux's recommendation of the principle of facticity and the metaphysics of subjectivity, rely on speculation. His point of departure, as we saw above, is occultation – the withdrawal of all objects in a secret realm. His rejection of correlationism is closer to b) than to a) above as it emphasizes that concealment is not something our correlation promotes but rather a general feature of every relation between any two objects. His position also resembles the metaphysics of subjectivity because it makes a feature of correlation – occultation – the basis for a speculative jump towards a general account of objects that make room for hidden real objects. Here, the speculative move leads to a totality that is no showcase, it is rather a totality where there are hidden elements in every object. Like with indexicalism, reality is not transparent. As we saw above, however, exteriority plays a role here only in a totality of objects. Here again, speculation leads to a totality and the perceived lack of transparency of all objects for-us become a certain lack of transparency in the general structure of objects.

Indexicalism entails that whatever exists is entangled with deixis. It is a paradoxical claim because it is about how everything is and yet it makes trancendence-free totalities impossible. As a claim about what there is, it contrasts both with correlationism and with any attempt to overcome it through a mere exercise of speculation. If correlationism is to be avoided – and indexicalism avoids it as much as it is more than a simple criticism of metaphysics – it is due to its blindness to the outer side of a border. Correlationism is finitude because it cannot face the outer as infinite, as a beyond that can never properly be reached. The idea that it can be reached leads to the quest for a totality that proves to be the very mirror image – perhaps the specular image – of correlationism.

Indeed, the contrast between totality and exteriority spells a difficulty for speculation. Speculation proceeds through projecting more of the same, as if expanding something through its image in a mirror. It is somehow related to totality but also with transparency – the transparency of what is reflected in mirrors. Speculative transparency leads to totality if it is not corrected in its leaning towards an exorcism of the very idea of an exterior. Speculative realism puts forward the issue of how the secret – the concealed, the hidden – reflects itself in the mirror. It deals in a contrast between the transparency of speculation and the occultation that is postulated in reality. It is an issue concerning the specular itself: how is it possible that what is concealed has its image reflected everywhere. It is as if the specular procedure – and the transparency associated to it – could reflect the blind-spots that cannot be seen but leave traces in the mirrors. Reflected in a mirror, withdrawal becomes a procedure that is exposed in its attempt to conceal.

Both Meillassoux and Harman use the speculative method to reach total images from what is not transparent in reality. In both cases, there is a tendency towards substantives – the real object in one case, the hyper-chaos in the other.

In contrast, indexicalism postulates that there is something exterior to any conception of the world. It starts out with deictic operations leading to interiorities, units of transcendence. The outside, the outer, the Outdoors, the Other are components of reality that is more like a horizon than something that can be mapped. Reality is therefore not only incomplete but in-completable. As a consequence, indexicalism is realist about deixis and combines this with the realism found in the criticism of metaphysics. It is not a realism which proposes a totality to cope with what is occult but one which finds reality in the always transcending exterior that makes a total view impossible. It is the realism of an open reality.

As such, it can not resort to unabashed speculation. Indexicalist commitment to exteriority makes horizons a more important metaphor than mirrors. As a consequence, it reflects no blind-spot but only acknowledge them as what bounds the mirror from outside. Contrasting with speculative realism, indexicalism tries no accommodation of the occult in a total view of reality but places the blind-spot is outside the scope of the mirror. There is no reflected image of the secret; a mirror cannot reflect what is outside the field of vision even if this field is extended by the mirror. What is beyond the mirror looms in the horizon in the sense that it cannot be shown but still can be pointed as we point to the exterior from within.

Speculation has to be counterbalanced by an attention to exteriority. The effort to project the Same on the Other is not the last word in metaphysics. Levinas called this effort with the name of ontology, understood as the effort to bring everything to a common ground by removing alterity. The ontologist is in the business of surprising what exists in order to bring its strangeness to neutral shore of a concept.5 To turn the stranger into a concept is to attempt to accommodate what is outer in a substantive description. Levinas rejects the idea that ontology, understood this way, can be a first philosophy – it is not rather not much more than pure violence and it harbors truth in the realm of anonymity.6 Rather, as criticism should precede dogmatism, metaphysics should precede ontology.7 Metaphysics is, for Levinas, a study of transcendence – the metaphysician and the Other are separated and form no totality.8 The precedence of metaphysics is the priority of the Other as Other, not of a mirror image but rather as a figure of transcendence that shapes my borders. The idea of the priority of the others is informative here: speculation, like ontology, should be combined with a respect for exteriority and, further, it should be bound by it.

Indexicalism, and its metaphysics of the others, operates therefore in a post-speculation register. It proceeds in a speculative manner when it moves from my interiority – and my transcendence by the Other – to a broader image of deictic operations and an outer border open to the Great Outdoors. This speculative step, however, leads to no transcendence-free totality; indeed it yields a paradoxical totality that can only be shaped like the horizon – with a beyond that is included among the deictic operators that provide a paradoxical furniture to a paradoxical universe. The paradoxical here follows from a speculation bounded by its starting point – deixis – which already includes the elements of its transcendence.

Deictic Absolutes 1

Been to Olhos D'água for most of this week working on the book that is now called 'Deictic Absolutes - on the proximity of the Great Outdoors'(It was previously called 'The interruption', 'The deictic universe' and 'The interrupted nexus').In the next few posts, more about the book including bits of it.

In the images the house of writing and the tree of feeding.





Thursday, 20 September 2018

Cyberpositive sanctity

Hashtag LevinasDeleuze.

There is an element of cyberpositive in the idea of infinite responsibility (as much as in the ideas of substitution, transcendence of the Other and an-archaic proximity, all of which in the Levinasian sense). If there is no end to satisfying the Other as my responsibility is infinite, there is no sense of self-preservation. I give, I give and stop caring about my survival. Positive cybernetics.

Levinas introduces the idea that I need to be independent of the Other in order to be guided by transcendence, in order to be substituted - this is the territory I start out with and the limits of deterritorialization.
But as long as I have a house, I can host more and more to an infinite drift, except I need to have a house to host. In any case, doing for the Other points towards an infinite drift (infinite responsibility).

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

Accelerationist lines


I was distinguishing between different lines in my class on accelerationism today:

Left ------------------------------------------------- Right (The traditional politics line)

Esquizo ---------------------------------------------- Paranoid (The DG line)

Cyberpositive drift ---------------------------------- Imuno-identity or human security system (The CCRU line)

Weak ------------------------------------------------- Strong (The Nietzsche line)

Bodies ----------------------------------------------- Organs (The Artaud line)

Now, there is a sense in which the Nietzsche line, the Artaud line and the DG line anticipate elements of the cybernetic line, the CCRU line. Now, what happens if we take the traditional politics line to be perpendicular to the CCRU line?

................Cyberpositive drift
..........................|
..........................|
.....................\ | /
.............leftaccel\ | / Nick Land
.......................\ | /
........................\ |/
Left ----------------------------------------------- Right
..........................|
..........................|
..........................|
..........................|
...................Imuno-identity

Well, if in a sense Nick Land insists either that the two lines coincide and the left is always a defense of the human security sistem or that the traditional politics line has to go and be replaced by the CCRU line (this is, I think, the unconditional accelerationist idea), the perperndicular lines enables us to see alternatives more clearly.

More about that soon.

Thursday, 23 August 2018

Der Spruch des Anaxagoras

Starting my lectures on metaphysics ans speculation on tree-like and other graph structures of connection between Same and Other. I started with one and many and the different ways to see how they relate. To the idea of an arché which is origin and government expressed in the thoughts of Anaximander, I contrasted the idea of an assemblage or a composition from different things. I dwelt in the contrast between Anaximander and Anaxagoras I drawed in a now six years old paper on the idea of horizon in Anaxagoras and Anaximander. In fact, Anaximander can be read as suggesting a very different project, different from the ones reducing the different to the same, the multiple to the unity. Reality is composed of multiple elements and not constituted from one or few ingredients. There is no foundation or ground, there is just composition, assemblage; he states that "[f]or none of the other things either is like any Other. And these things being so, we must hold that all things are in the whole." (fr.4) It is the origin of a non-standard conception where reality is tied to difference coming together. Anaxagoras claims that

All things were together, infinite both in number and in smallness; for the small too was infinite. And, when all things were together, none of them could be distinguished for their smallness. For air and aether prevailed over all things, being both of them infinite; for amongst all things these are the greatest both in quantity and size. (fragment 1)

Anaxagoras holds a priority nihilism in fragment 3:

Nor is there a least of what is small, but there is always a smaller; for it cannot be that what is should cease to be by being cut.But there is also always something greater than what is great, and it is equal to the small in amount, and, compared with itself, each thing is both great and small.

But I always think that perhaps the claim that needs more attentive examination in contrast with the idea of a ground is fragment 10:

How can hair come from what is not hair, or flesh from what is not flesh?