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Excess as a transcendental condition for nothingness

Bataille´s La part maudite is a great book. He writes as if he knew he had gold in his hands. He found something of the enormity of simplicity: excess. To be, at least in the surface of the Earth, is to consume an excess that is always there, always requiring something to be spent. The excess, to be sure, is not a complement, it is not like the extra water the camel carries. It is, rather, a supplement, that needs to be spent somewhere in the surface of the Earth. The Sun throws energy on us all and, bordered by luxurious exhuberance and sheer alergic violence, instills a curse, the accursed part.

Bataille talks about death as being a product of excess, a consequence of our having to spend on luxuries. Organisms that reproduce themselves by scissiparity are eternal. There is no need to die, but without death there will soon be no room for the increasing excedents everything has to handle. Death enables the survivors to carry on both growing and engaging in their spending activity. Organic limits to growth have to be overthrown (and this is what capital does; it is in the neighborhood of a body without organs because it promised unlimited growth unbound by organization constraints). Death is a way to handle excess.

Further, one can think with Bataille that every civilization is a way to consume, a pattern of spenditure, a way to handle excess. Ours is concentrated on metaphysics - the gradual development of nihilism. The introduction of nothingness - by the parricide - made death be not only disappearance leaving space in the scene of what is still in the surface dealing with excesses but also a lapse into nothingness. Nothingness is introduced as permanent fear that makes room for religion, metaphysics and archive in general - being is ephemeral, it must be kept in memories somewhere. Assume metaphysics is an epoch in the history of being, or a dispensation of being, as Heidegger claims. That is, it is peopled, not only an account of how things are but also a configuration of things that include (metaphysical) thought itself. Made this assumption, the history of nihilism can be seen as the history of a pattern of spenditure - excess can be handling by avoiding nothingness, through religion, salvation, archive or whatever. Nihilism amplifies the luxury of death - it makes into something worth spending energy to fight or counter. Excess is what makes nothingness possible because it presses non-necessity in an otherwise Parmenidian world where what exists is necessary. Excess can be handled through the ephemerity of beings - and then, nothingness has to be mended, and nothing can fully mend it. The energy required to dry a block of ice is needed. Nothingness is a civilizational guide in that it is a program of employment of excessive energy.


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