The Gift

on the non-fixity of world identity.

It is not a definitive world by which reality is understood as a singular and fixed truththat is significant. The various opinions, attitudes and mentalities based in subjective meaning upon the stable ground of reality are not the issue.  Rather, it is the relationship that we have with things which is truly significant. 

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I had a moment with a young individual today.

I don’t know how it is in the rest of the world, but in the US it is a strange kind of trend of adolescents who are depressed to self harm. I don’t know if this is a global thing but I know it is a United States thing.

It seems that there is a rash of depressed and or anxious young people who, lacking any particular sharp tool, such as a razor blade or perhaps a knife, will scratch themselves in one place with their own fingernail, often short, until The skin finally breaks and a wound develops. They will continue to scratch that one place longer and wider until some unknown threshold is achieved and then they will produce another one right next to it, often parallel and sometimes in squared or triangular designs. And they will do this, many of them, until their arms are covered with these kind of burn sores. When you get a bunch of these children together, it is at once striking and at the same time strangely of no concern; for in part, one might be just as inclined to wonder why a group of kids will start smoking tobacco or in our current situation, vaping. One has to admit there is a certain amount of fad or trend or whatever you would want to call it. Because anxiety and depression does not necessarily mean that you have to self harm, and indeed when I was young there was many kids my age, many who were depressed or had problematic families who were friends of mine, who never thought of self harming in the way that seems so trendy and ubiquitous for our children nowadays. It is sad and strange.

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My intention for this post was not to discuss the philosophical fixtures of mental health theories or to offer any sort of help necessarily to these young people.

I really brought it up because this one person I was talking to today used to self harm, and then stopped for a couple years and only recently had started again because of some sort of life event that was triggering.

This person was also depressed but having more issues with anxiety. I was talking to this person and they happen to mention how they are not suicidal because their best friend had committed suicide a few years prior, so they never contemplate killing themselves.

It struck me how they said this so matter-of-factly, for it is common with people who suffer from great and long lasting general anxiety as well as depression to have to also battle with intrusive suicidal thoughts.

And I said to this person:

You know, that’s kind of amazing, in a strange way, when you think about it. What you just said…

Your best friend died? I said.

And so you never think about killing yourself, you simply don’t have thoughts about killing yourself? I said.

Then I said, you know, in a strange way, your friend gave you a gift, for he gave you a reason to live.

And this person began to slowly tear up, as I did also, with compassion in my heart.

They were looking down but then they kind of looked up at me through the tops of their eyes and gave a sleight little smile On top of that kind of frown that you get when there’s a deep hurt that just quickly surged to the surface, when your face can’t help but strain into an childish ugly grimace. A kind of embarrassment and yet of connection.

Yeah; maybe… they said.



Sometimes we need a different way to look at things. Sometimes we can hold what seems as two opposing sentiments for the sake of at once mourning and yet celebrating, missing and yet respecting.  and yet, sometimes when we see it, it seems so obvious. Like, why didn’t I think of that.

I think some of it may be not so much that this person didn’t think of that, but they did not allow themselves to think of it because of the polemically reductive fashion by which we arrive with our ethical selves to the encounter with the world. We are often not permitted to think but in specific ways about specific things.

Often we just hold the sadness a certain way because we think that’s the only way that sadness is allowed to be, holding it so dear that we fear that person is going to be disrespected, as if it is this supremely fragile thing. Whereas actually it could be a source of the most profound strength and Resilliance. 

The modern ideological and ethical sense sometimes misleads us into seeing tragedy as one way, into what Kierkegaard calls the “either/or”, which is the mentality of fixation, of limit, of finitude. 

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How much does my identity depend upon this either/or reduction towards self and world, as if indeed they either have to be 100% intertwined and subjective, or 100% separate, psychological and objective?

Maybe the relationship changes under various conditions.  maybe it is both.





Stiegler’s Faux-pas?

I have been chipping away very slowly at Stiegler’s Negathropocene.

And here is a paragraph from the end of Part 2 in the book that I thought encompasses, what we might call, a faux pas in reckoning.  Similar to Lacan’s mistake , i’m calling this author’s mistake a faux pas because it seems to me that his mistake he could not help because of his investment in the ubiquity of the social criterion, or so it appears.

In particular I bring out to relief his suggestion that what is required is a change in the theory of value.

what I am calling a faux pas in the context of his proposal is the same type of error that is indicated in Lyotard’s “The differend“, and elaborated on in “ThePost modern condition”.

So It is interesting to me that just prior to this posted paragraph the author comments how he attempts to show where Lyotard’s condition Is insufficient. My answer before I even read his piece is, “of course it’s insufficient because from your position you are required to argue a denial of the situation at hand”, which I have discussed in other posts of mine.

I submit, that if we understand what Zizek has described as “A change in how we reckon change” as an indication of the same requirement that Stiegler is talking about, then he (S) would have to first give us a disclaimer about how what he is writing about a change in the theory of value is not already invested in the very value that is attempting to change by the submission of this essay. Without it, That is called duplicity. Often we have an example of why these theoreticians who are so invested in the social equation and the phenomenological involvement of subjects actually serve to function the perpetuation of the theory of value that they would so hope to change through their use of discourse.

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The question that haunts every modern philosophical text is whether it embodies and thus accounts for this odd incongruence. It is the incongruity that shows up in the lacuna between Hegel and Kierkegaard, As well as Kant and Wittgenstein.

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When we get beyond the either/or of quick subjective assertion (I want to be heard! And seen! ) then the political realm garners a more appropriate response. Such reply then has little to do with value as an issue, for the adversary is understood as and inherent part of the struggle. It becomes less an effort of attempt to rid or dispel the adversary and more about changing the relationship. A theory of value is that which is inherently changed by virtue of the fact that the real relationship is changed.  Thus does not occur in politics (the ethical universe), and thus the political effort of argumentation does very little to change the theory of value (see Kierkegaard). But again, this is not an either/or statement (Kierkegaard was caught in his historical moment: hence his despair). It is not suggesting that a person somehow becomes or refrains or steps outside of the political sphere;!rather, the individual’s orientation upon that arena has changed implicitly.

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This condition should be what Stiegler stands upon. In this sense, the “macro-economic” reorganization does hint at a recognition, but I think the either/or might have him by the bit, which then leads him in a circle, or maybe and ellipse.

So it seems that Stiegler is arguing the condition that must be brought about by his discussion, and so moves beyond Dasein in as much as he must argue history and society already in the motion of getting beyond: negentropy: which sounds suspiciously Similar to what he is arguing that he is stepping beyond, or that we have stepped beyond. He begins to sound startlingly similar to a child singing in the dark instead of flipping the light switch which she knows lay just in reach on the wall.

I am not sure his historical argument is quite sound beyond the mere words.

But I will read on, and i will report later upon my progress through his book, and I will reflect upon whether or not I was incorrect in this initial assessment of mine.

“Faith Turned on its Head”

Choosing Belief with Kierkegaard

https://notentirelypyrrhonian.wordpress.com/2019/09/06/choosing-belief-with-kierkegaard/
— Read on notentirelypyrrhonian.wordpress.com/2019/09/06/choosing-belief-with-kierkegaard/

This linked post is a great case by which to begin to understand the parameters of the conventional philosophical orientation upon things.

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I disagree with the writer: the leap of K is the absurd situation of already having occurred. It is not “into a choice” of faith, rather, such a choice is evidence that faith is already there.

Sartre, as I see him, misunderstood K and posited a free choice in light of the absurdity of brute existence, as S might have been reacting to the reality of the Final Solution and World War 2. But in his bewilderment of such atrocity, as with others of his time, like Fankl and May, his reading of Kierkegaard was produced in his (Sartre’s) astonishment, where as Kierkegaard was not astonished, or, he was more astonished that the brute reality of existence was/is missed so thoroughly by most (the crowd, or those oriented in such a way for their identity).

I see Sartres existentialism as a complete misreading of K. But that’s not to say that S did not have good insight given the condition of his moment.

However, the trauma (ww2) limited his ability to view; it refined his view such that the tiny pin hole he was looking through appeared to grant focus to the “whole”, perhaps like a small apperature of a photographic lens has a longer depth of field.

But we know now with trauma, the tiny view just takes over the field rather than representing it truly.

The traditional conventional readings of Kierkegaard routinely misrepresent his works (or thinks only inside the close reading of his words rather than the whole meaning of all his works — that is, philosophically rather than psychologically . Many of Ks works are indeed called by himself “psychological” btw.) Hence in order to render the meaning of his works properly for our time, one must turn thier idea of faith on its head, turn it upside down.

K’s reprimand is of the “inauthentic” individual who simply is always in despair to will to be oneself. Such individuals, ironically, 😘 find and found solace in Sartre’s existentialism because Sartre and his peers (and others) were shook by the apparent inhumanity that humanity would be party to — and such individuals understand the view from despair (the view that despair brings about) as indeed the true view, the viewing of the true existence, but it is the distortion. I call this distortion the “real” view, because it is the view that must be reckoned with first, in reality. So, in a way, Sartre was actually giving a sort of psychologically compassionate statement by his philosophy.

Like the analysis of Trauma, the view that is true of the situation is not found in the reasonable conclusions gained in the traumatic coming upon such brute force. Rather, distance allows the true picture to come into focus without restimulation.

From the brute existence already having been forced and come to terms with The reading of events is no longer informed through the “post-traumatic” apprehension-reaction against a circumstance of things; the person no longer involuntarily enacting actions and views from the still resonating “close-range” and the re-encountering of the traumatic stimulus. Or, in Sartre’s way: The encounter with the abyss of freedom is traumatic, hence one revolts from it, rejects it in order to reshape one’s own life through choosing it out of the chasm of nothing upon which identity is based.

What Kierkegaard already had processed and viewed truly was already lost, as we see in K’s reprimands of Christianity. What Sartre “rediscovered” was a reading of Kierkegaard through the lens of deflowered ignorance: In despair to will to be oneself. Hence Sartre’s Existentialism just posits that one can will to be oneself through the free choice to no longer be in despair. This reading, while good for the modern citizen who is already in despair merely tells everyone it is ok to live in ignorance of oneself through choosing to deny thier despair through the free act of choice.

Judge Wilhelm (in Either/Or part 2) describes the condition of those who would wish to “join in love” with that which is apparently unknowable, and hence the ground of ethical choice that is despair.

While such a reading can be therapeutic considering that most of society citizens do their best to try and avoid their brute existence, the reading, such as evident in the linked-post (as well as the scholarly reports) nevertheless is opposite of what K was saying.

Ks use of the trope “Christianity” often throws off interpretation, as we see with Sartre; for who could still think God was in history after the Holocaust? Sartre’s whole philosophy is informed by active trauma: the trauma of having the very human force of belief confronted at its core, that is, as an actual force connected with causality.

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Read more insights into philosophy in THE SECOND PART of The Philosophical Hack: The Object of the Subject.

The Concluding Unscientific Postscript to Event.

Coming to mind whether you want it to or not.

A Basis or Manner of Discernment for the Two Routes: Either/Or.

Review: Either/Or

Review: Either/Or
— Read on lotzintranslation.com/2019/02/28/review-either-or/

My comment:

I think his central point is that there is no choice to be made. That A and B, as there may be a perception of either/or, amounts to a false choice, A manner of being a particularly “inauthentic” individual, not universal, or in denial of existence. The authenticity is found in the absurd notion that there is no choice to be had. The Two Routes – Which by the way are not equivalent to A and B and Kierkegaard’s either/or – outline the specific parameters of K’s absurdity, and thus the full acceptance of one’s existence as a universal mandate. Which is to say the ridiculousness of such an ideal as it might call for a willful belief or opinion upon the matter.