Saving Transcendental Freedom. 

I thank my WP friends because they help me see where I am blind. Understand (with reference to my last post), I do not suffer anxiety or panic attacks of the usually psychological sort that comes to mind. Even as philosophical notions might address such mental malady, I mean more in concert with the anxiety of Kierkegaard’s note, as well Heidegger and others.


Probably close to the last thing I’ll have to say about some sort of science of the phenomenal subject, I guess so to speak, reminds me of a scene from the movie ‘Saving Private Ryan’ . I don’t speak German, but a friend told me that what the soldier is saying to the guy he’s killing is basically “it’s happening…just relax accept it… It’s happening…” Things like that. (maybe someone could give me an actual translation of what he is saying).  But that really leads for this essay’s final thoughts or almost final thoughts on the science of this situation.

First just a short analysis through the clip. Private Melish, the American soldier that is in the ground struggle and is killed by the knife, might be seen as the [insert various philosophical problematics that center around terms for the thinking human being], the subject or general topic of continental philosophical discourse. We might be able to see his character as this philosophical subject of the last, say since the 70’s: With the post moderns, Derrida and Delueze and such thought they could defeat the encroaching knowledge of itself through a diversion that reified transcendental agency. One should keep in mind, though, that the various terms philosophers use to attempt to distract ones attention to the agency that is being granted by an aspect that is always outside the discourse itself —

(Delueze and others want to call this ‘immanence’ or ‘a plane of immanence’. The problem with this idea coupled with the attempt to describe it is the problem at hand, what I am, and they are, attempting to describe. I have come upon describing the situation as a problem of apprehension and meaning, and not about some ontological condition. The problem is that even while one might describe the situation as imminence as opposed to transcendence, in order to be able to posit such a situation to another human being, which is to say to fact of the distance implicit in the posture of communication, there must be an aspect informing that situation which is outside of the situation, but yet also must be influencing or allowing for the situation. At all times, again, despite what one wants to say or argue, this situation always relies upon a transcendent aspect, a clause of discourse that occurs transcendent, outside, above, beyond, the communicative play. This is because if i am by myself, then the issue is moot. The issue is thus how discourse is appropriated for meaning, but also how the human beings involved in this discourse perpetually want to argue that this situation is not the case. For the question always seems to return to the condition of separate and autonomous human thinking agents who might be coming upon such an understanding.)

— Private Melish at first put up a good fight, but the fight isn’t going quite how he wants it and somehow feels he is gonna lose and so pulls out the knife for, hopefully, to quickly end this physical struggle that he is losing. The post-post moderns thus see their discourse as a last effort to save the transcendental agent.

The German soldier can be seen as that which is most threatening to the agent of transcendence: science. The agent of transcendence, its freedom, is always based in discursive strategies because, philosophically, as we see beginning with Wittgenstein and later Derrida, is somehow can see that discourse appears to reflect a condition that is wholeheartedly understood as reflecting real truths, or able to reflect real truths. The agent (AoT) thus works to subvert this real condition from encroaching upon its essential freedom through the manipulation of discourse; the ability to manipulate discourse for this agent (not all humanity; this is a power play going on here) is understood as coming from somewhere that is not the agent him or herself (we see many authors admitting this in various ways), and indeed much of the continental tradition is concerned with how to situate this ‘otherness’ in discourse, while at the same time reserving it, protecting it, from that which would impinge on its freedom. Science is the aspect that manages, that effects control. Human Beings resist being controlled, but at the same time, enact and elicit that ability to be controlled at every moment.

Corporal Upham, the soldier that is coming up the stairs, crying, getting his rifle ready but apprehensive, desperate, might I even say, in despair. He is the spirit we are actually concern with.  If we are familiar with the rest of this part of the movie , he is the ammo guy, he supposed to have the ammo for the large 70 mm machine gun that is up in the loft to which he’s returning with more ammo . He sees the German guy go into The building and he is going back at least with the idea of helping by surprising the German . He is loaded with ammo around his shoulders . But he is the example of the spirit that is destitute, unable to act. The anxiety of his existence is nearly unbearable. He knows that the German soldier (science) is going to ambush and kill is comrade the machine gunner in the loft (AoT); he feels that he could help Private Melish, but somehow he is unable. But in fact, after Private Malish (the agent of transcendence) is killed, the German Soldier coming down (science) the stairs meets Corporal Upham (the spirit), and leaves him be.


I won’t go much further in this analogy that to say that the agent of transcendence always wins; ‘science’ always yields to science. “Saving Private  Ryan” could be said to be less about saving a precious individual agent, and more about the condition wherein spirit resides, is effective, ineffective, seen and unseen.

The science is the ToA will happen, despite its protestations and discursive manipulations, and Yet the ToA will also always have to know that is has essential freedom in reality, it must have an arena in which to exercise is freedom unhindered. Hence, I come back to my “Star Wars” analogy of the situation at hand (coming up next, I think).



Author: landzek

My name is Lance Kair, a philosopher, a counselor and a musician who is being questioned.

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