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Friday, 25 May 2012


Sometimes thought is strongly triggered by Nemesis - by envy and jealousy of whatever makes itself present. Jealousy of what was chosen to happen: why on earth has this and not something else taken place? It had to be driven by undeserved luck. Thinking is moved by a jealousy towards happening. It makes thought boil with despite, contempt and obsession with issues of merit. It drives criticism - the skeptic, the rebellious and the explosive ones. It feeds the taste for nothingness. It feeds the lack of taste. Or rather, the envy that nothingness holds towards being. Leibniz´s insistence that this was the best of all possible world was in a sense addressing that jealousy: one can expect whatever for the future, but concerning the past, no jealousy is to be allowed. It is an attempt to tame wild jealous thoughts. To guide imagination through a principle of sufficient reason. There is a reason why he left me for somebody else so that I don´t have to go back to black, I don´t have to collapse in the pot of my acid juices and cook my flesh forever. Reason, that handler of wild thoughts, gives me a special dispensation: I don´t have to squeeze myself in the ditch between what has happened and what I stood for.

Discussing with Leonel the thesis that Deleuze finds in Proust: jealousy makes one think more than friendship. Jealousy triggers all kinds of thoughts, it ferments the imagination. It provokes thoughts that tear apart their objects. It is no friend of wisdom, no friend of the wise - the wisdom doesn´t deserve to be wisdom. It is about suspicion. It looks for conspiracies. It makes sure there is a hair of the devil in our gaze. Phtonosophy rather than erosophy, rather than philosophy.

1 comment:

  1. This contrast with friendship only applies, I think, to naive or fusional friendship, monist friendship that is not aware of the incommensurable gaps in thought. deleuze presents another idea of friendship as necessary to thinking in his exchange of correspondence with Dionys Mascolo, and also in WHAT IS PHILOSOPHY? I think the superiority of jealousy over naive friendship is that it introduces wariness or mistrust in the place of trust, and Deleuze ties this in WIP? to no longer accepting concepts as given transparencies but as needing to be created by distancing oneself from the naively given. I talk a little about this here:
    Perhaps the two cinema books contain a similar nuance applied to all affects. Jealousy taken in the action schema would not let the imagination develop or favour the creation of concepts. Jealousy would deploy this capacity only in the time schemas where linear chronological time loses its dominance.