The Bearer of Bad News: Greta Thunberg and Social Revolution

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Greta Thunberg has recently burst onto the world stage as the champion of the climate movement. With some justifiable rage, she seeks to organize the world’s young people, and listening adults, to combat the threat to everyone’s way of life posed by climate change, and the stubborn inaction of entrenched economic, political, and military interests on this most urgent and universal of problems. Before addressing the substance of Thunberg’s activity, it’s important to look at core ways in which she is read or “interpellated” by her worldwide audience.

While celebrity culture is a trap in an of itself, people have become notable and deemed worthy of emulation and interpretation since time immemorial. Cultures are made by visionaries who show what is possible and invite others to join them. Such figures attract much attention, empty flattery as well as misguided hatred. In this, it is Thunberg’s courage as much as anything else which makes her exemplary. In considering dominant narrative frames surrounding her, we can help crystallize focus on her particular impact and resonance as a political and cultural figure.

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  1. Childhood

Pieces have already been written about the complexity of political readings of Thunberg arising from her age. Diana Georgescu explains:

The polarization [Thunberg engenders] is not down so much to political divide. Rather, the split in opinion is due to our deep-seated belief that childhood is an age of innocence and being dependent on adults, a time that aligns with the private, not the public and political sphere. Before the 1800s few adults held this view: it only gained acceptance with the rise of the middle-class in the nineteenth century.

With these words, we see that Thunberg is challenging much more than environmental policy, understood in the narrow sense of meteorological change. Thunberg is challenging norms of how people are supposed to engage in society. Of course, there have been child activists before—Malala comes to mind—but also, notably, child workers, from factory workers to child entertainers like Shirley Temple. Thunberg is different, in rallying for a cause which is truly global in scope, and complex in its appeal. The climate movement is an economic movement, calling attention to the imminent breakdown of our economic system; it is also a moral movement, issuing a challenge to those with influence, big or small, to act in the way that is right and not the way that is easy (for the moment); it is also a spiritual and cultural movement, exploring the ways in which people can interact with the world and other people.

In this, Thunberg has stepped out of the role of children which has increasingly become the role of adults as well: sit down, shut up, and listen to what the teacher tells you. Whether the teacher is at a school, in the courtroom, on TV, or in office, the time has come for all of us to put our childishness aside. The enthocentric view of childhood which has predominated is being destroyed by the obliteration of any protection of the private from the public. Climate change is coming for us personally, and so each person can become attuned to its challenge.

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  1. Asperger’s

Thunberg is also notable for embodying non-normative cognition in the form of Asperger’s syndrome. Those with this syndrome, such as Benjamin Banneker (pictured above), have been characterized to

typically have delayed access or no access to this phenomenon of human communication and share a problem that is called mind-blindness. Since interpersonal communication is approximately 65% nonverbal, you can quickly see that not being able to formulate a theory of mind leaves these individuals at a distinct disadvantage in relationship with others because the behavior of other people does not make sense to them.

It may seem counterintuitive that someone who lacks some of the normative foundations of empathy would lead a global movement for environmental justice. Yet the mystery dissolves when we think of how much in our environment is actually not trying to influence us for the better. How many things in life is it better to miss out on? Further, we see in Thunberg a change in the logic of the activist, especially the privileged activist. Instead of being inspired by the pain of others, this new activist starts with the self and its complexity, and moves into the social domain because the social is related to the self. This form of engagement is more authentic, since it leaves aside in its grounding the question of “looking right” to others or letting passion be overcome by politeness. Climate change is a problem because we are all worried about it; Thunberg was so worried she stopped going to school. Everyone should stop doing everything they can until we figure out this problem, not for other generations or the Third World, but because the ecological, metabolic disconnect in our society is tearing each of us apart, this instant. In this way we see that simpleminded critiques of Thunberg for “this focus away from personal responsibility” are misguided; far from blaming only corporations and governments for the problem of climate change, Thunberg is furious with the complacent people of the world who are allowing this to happen and not forcing the issue to solve this pressing economic, ecological, and psychological issue.

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  1. Conspiracy Theories

The most detailed conspiracy of the many surrounding Thunberg is the idea that she is really an actress, Estella Renee. This theory mirrors the idea that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is an actress. We see here how political paranoia and art are intermingled, a long-running theme in Western, and indeed world, culture:

All the world’s a stage,

And all the men and women merely players;

They have their exits and their entrances;

And one man in his time plays many parts,

These lines from Shakespeare iterate the poetic truth that we are all actors, that all of life is a play-act in some sense. This poetic truth resonates in the way that people account for anomalous social events by characterizing them as phony, in the literal sense that witnesses to a mass shooting may be “crisis actors” merely playing the role of traumatized bystander. In a way, all this is logical. Governments regularly intervene by staging “set-pieces” to corral public attention and opinion; Donald Trump would then be the greatest crisis actor of all time, as he has raised the aesthetization of politics to the highest level yet seen.

Back to Thunberg. Her movement for the climate fits neatly into paranoia surrounding Agenda 21. Proponents of such thinking may hold “that Agenda 21, a 23-year-old non-binding UN resolution that suggests ways for governments and NGOs to promote sustainable development, is the linchpin in a plot to subjugate humanity under an eco-totalitarian regime,” or other symbolically equivalent theories. From this perspective, ecological activism is “concern trolling” initiated by shadowy government operatives and fallen for by simpleminded liberal virtue signalers. Fundamentally, it matters not from this perspective whether Thunberg is herself “in on the game,” or one of those duped. Either way, he activity is accounted for within the logic of “traditional society vs. communist, collectivist innovators” which has become the dominant narrative in world discourse.

 

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Underneath it All

All this to say that Greta Thunberg clearly represents the forefront of social entrepreneurship at this time, and that her meteoric rise and dynamic sustained presence on the world stage represents an invitation to all of us to follow in her footsteps. Not only in the service of her project, but our own. We must take heed of Thunberg’s youth, and see that advanced societies have domesticated their populations so as to make them infantile. Now, even children are called to action by a world situation that requires the attention of each one of us. We should see in Thunberg’s challenge to childhood the invitation to challenge our own childishness. In Thunberg’s condition, Asperger’s, we should see one aspect of what is important now: truly valuing our selves and being able to “shut the world out.” Only in this way can we meet our own challenge in the world, and find the intrinsic motivation to change our way of life. Finally, in the conspiracy theories surrounding Thunberg, we should see how we are all susceptible to reading situations in a way which confirms our own pet theories, and how this tendency tends to dismiss or defame anyone who rises above to live according to a higher challenge, and disseminate that sense of personal overcoming to the whole world.

Thunberg is the Joan of Arc of the 21st century. Already, in the past two years she has dramatically impact global culture by helping to normalize a new role for children, and indeed for all people. In a word, Thunberg possesses assertiveness, a boldness she has honed and is in complete communion with. I mean not to reduce Thunberg to her age or cognitive mode, but rather to show that aspects of her experience likely helped her to find her passion and articulate it. Hence, we should feel no guilt about “tuning out” the world for a time, surrounding ourselves with our passions and comforts. Only in this way will we find the personal resonance, leading to dramatic social intervention, this historical moment requires of us.

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Hegemony of Hypocrisy: Aspiring to Democracy in United States & China

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By Adam Wadley & Colin Hill

The ancient proverb “The Enemy of my Enemy is My Friend” ignores the stark reality that most conflicts are not between heroes and villains but two or more asymmetrically odious villains. As much as we love to watch underdogs take on the big bad, most of the time in global politics we are forced to watch the New York Yankees play the New England Patriots in an insufferable game that can be best described as the unholy marriage between celebrity golf and amateur cricket. So it goes with Hong Kong, the Chinese Communist party (CCP) and United States, iterating a meme war ongoing since time immemorial.

When Hong Kongers began to protest against their treatment by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), it was natural for them to appeal to Western governments and publics for moral, political, and financial support. After all, Hong Kong wants democracy, it wants a system like the West…! Right? In fact, to the extent that the movement in Hong Kong stands for the spirit of freedom, it cannot be given aid in its expression by Western powers or peoples, because the idea of freedom has died in the West. This is not to say that China is undeserving of challenge; China remains locked in the same cold global civil war waged since 1945, and it, like all powers, must be confronted in order to force the issue of misguided bureaucratic meddling.

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Too often, we think that our job in interpreting the news is to figure out who is “more right,” and go all out in supporting our champions and answering for their inconsistencies. Rather, thinking must continue in a methodical procession, a dialogue of arguments, counter-arguments, and counter-counter-arguments that continues until we can make sense of our reality (or die trying). At the ordinary of political thought, we see that Hong Kong wants democracy, that United States claims to have democracy, and that the West is assembling the firing squad to crucify China on human rights. The first impulse of millions of Americans is to side against China, but crucially with United States. Our next response might be to defend China from Western criticism, making a metacognitive choice that the normal interpretation is wrong because United States is the aggressor in the situation. Thinkers, we must go further! It is necessary to engage in meta-metacognition to see that simple-mindedly agreeing or disagreeing with the dominant opinion is foolish.

At this level, we can see that United States claims to stand for democracy, and that many people believe it. At the same time, United States is the empires of public relations. For over 100 years, it has poured ungodly wealth into the project of molding its people’s minds in the most efficacious manner. By this time, the populace is so simple-minded that many are shocked to discover that just because you say you are something doesn’t mean you are it. This is an example of something that a pre-spectacular mind would grasp intuitively, but which has been lost in generalized childishness.

This is all to say that someone’s true motives can be something other than what they say they are, and that our own motivations can remain a mystery even to ourselves. It is not necessary to have one’s papers in order before one speaks to power, yet when one’s blind spots are pointed out it is proper to accept the revision, and not double down on dreary dreams of dogmatism. This is a plea not to drop criticism of China due to Western hypocrisy, but to reform Western hypocrisy if we are to have any hope of assisting the Hong Kongers, like David facing down a much larger and more powerful enemy. Indeed, most likely the project of instituting democracy for the first time will involve simultaneous engagement at a global level.

My fellow Americans, what is our station? We Americans, with our precious rights, solemn oaths to country and constitution: our littered trail of bloody corpses on the road to freedom. United States has responded to movements for increased democracy with political assassinations and systematic persecution, forced electroshock therapy and solitary confinement. The deaths of JFK, Malcolm X, MLK Jr., and RFK showed that America is a land of bloodletting of those who challenge the ruling military junta. And all this in a 5-year period! From the start, United States has operated as an oligarchical military junta, with violence directed outward in every direction to maintain the fantasy of tranquility and freedom within. The “freedom” of United States is unmasked by the misery and desperation of its people.

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Those in United States are not able to see China in a disinterested manner due to the inculcation of vulgar anti-communism in the American public. This is an example of how Western dogmatism holds even the West back: in seeking protect property rights, allegedly the most sacred rite in the world, the West has endeavored to teach its children and even leaders foolish stories of the simple superiority of our system. Any wise ruler, or citizen, of any land, must consider all the ways it is possible to fall into error. To establish blinders for thought, “Communism is Evil,” is to murder the mind, and, in fact, doom the nation. No blinded nation has yet won a lasting victory.

The Red Scares in United States following the Russian revolution betray the bad conscience of the American elite. They know that they preserve human misery for personal profit; and not even absolute but relative profit. Our entire system is set up to worship the objective virtue—property—at the expense of anything timeless or sublime, simple or dignified. We see it in the non-stop glorification of the military police on monopoly propaganda outlets known as CNN, MSNBC, and Fox, in the drive to consume more and more of what is not worth eating, and feel less and less of all worth sensing. The Red Scares were great crimes, which cut down the noble and sensitive few who may have helped avert the tragedy of the last century.

This is not to say that a satisfactory communist vision has yet been articulated. Instead, it is to say that the conversation is not settled, and those who reinforce their cognitive biases with wealth and capital make themselves no more right. Illusion must give way, and cannot be forever sustained; in fact, we already have the critical mass of those uncomfortable and questioning which is the raw material of the moment. To fashion something like democracy, it is merely necessary to see the true target: not just China, Iran, or those other objectionable governments who also happen to be official enemies of the resident junta, but rather the entrenched weaponry, ignorance, and drive to control which is present in mankind.

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Among us all—United States, China, and their respective publics—we constitute the Hegemony of Hypocrisy.

Group Hypocrisy
United States Government Claims to support democracy, is military junta
People’s Republic of China Claims to fight oppression; is a totalitarian bureaucracy
United States Public Claim to support democracy, accept servitude and ignorance and serve interests of junta by denouncing official enemies
Hong Kongers Claim to want democracy, but really just pay lip service to get support from the West, don’t question injustice internal to Hong Kong

 

With the talk of China’s genocide against the Uyghurs, we should note that United States treatment of its internally colonized so called black population also constitutes genocide. Enforced poverty, brutalization by internal colonial enforcers known as police, and sequestration in solitary confinement, all on the basis that “this is simply how things are.” Property relations do not simply “exist,” they are political conventions that we can challenge. The Western public has lost the stomach to acknowledge that we are, on the whole, completely subservient to a military and corporate elite which is blundering us all into extermination.

This intervention is made to try and prevent the descent into simpleminded jingoism and support for the establishment which have been the trap laid for Americans dozens of times over the years, and into which we ‘til now have ever fallen. Luckily for we Hum(a)ns, the future need not resemble the past, and we may yet dream of a better mode of life, as yet unarticulated, but eagerly waiting.

November 3, 2019

 

THIS IS HALLOWEEN: Driven to Social Revolution by the News

On this show, I plan to talk about world events and wind up laying down some of my philosophy of history and get sidetracked in a million nuances and side-plots. That’s the beauty of improvisational radio! I dub this the year of “World Revolution,” following Wallerstein’s analysis of 1986 as such in his essay “1968, Revolution in the world-system. I look at the bubbling conflicts in Hong Kong, with the Uighurs, and in Chile, and discuss why revolution hasn’t broken out in United States. A learned listener calls in and we discuss the slave trade and indigenous people in South America at length. I remain ignorant about many things, but I don’t claim to speak definitively on them, either.

I’m starting an open-source think tank, if you want to get involved message me at speakingbroadlyshow@gmail.com, or anywhere else, and describe your interest and/or skills

“The Project”: Open Source Think Tank, Outlook on History, Transposing Conlict into Cultural Challenge

On this improvised recording, I brainstorm my idea for an open source think tank and possible research questions. I wind up talking a lot about my philosophy of life, the world, history, cultural anthropology, and much more. Not much jargon, just straight dope ideas. If you would like to join my research project, send me an email at SpeakingBroadlyShow@gmail.com or DM me. Talk about your research interests or what you think you can bring to the project. Also getting into providing affective/cognitive support for those struggling with circumstances and making a change. Hmu to get involved

 

 

Dr. Peter Lindsay on “The Craft of University Teaching”

Dr. Peter Lindsay is a professor of Political Science and Philosophy at Georgia State University. He joins me to discuss his new book, “The Craft of University Teaching,” available from the University of Toronto Press as well as from Amazon.

Dr. Lindsay and I discuss the importance of getting students (or anyone we are engaging with) to be motivated to learn more about the subject, not simply to fill their heads with what we want them to think. We talk about the persona that a professor puts on to teach, and more dynamics that go into making a good classroom. I think that Dr. Lindsay’s ideas apply to our attempts to educate each other as well, and so their relevance extends far beyond the classroom into daily questions of motivation and conversational strategy.

Joker: Carnival and Cannibal

 

Everyone’s making analyses of Joker, so I guess I have to also! Here’s 80 minutes of a deep dive into Joker and the first few pages of Baudrillard’s Carnival and Cannibal. It’s just the beginning, but I already get into the themes of whiteness, childhood and intergenerational trauma, world history, and aesthetics. Whew! More to come, sometime, but until then this insomniac recording will have to tide you over.

Note: I edited this to make to make it louder, but I don’t know how to remove the distortion so this is as loud as it can comfortably go. Hope you can hear it. I will be going over all of this again in the time to come

Abolition Part 2: Proletarian Self-Abolition, Nagarjuna, Baudrillard

On this episode, I deliver the second part of my theory on abolition as it brings together “identity politics” in its highest forms, the movements to abolish race and gender. I show how these movements lead naturally, if uneasily, to the Marxist project of proletarian self-abolition, whereby the proletariat destroys itself, and all other classes, it its coming to exist for itself as a class.

This paradoxical notion leads us to Nagarjuna, who 1500 years before Marx was already working through the problem of mounting a global movement of awakening (Bodhicitta or the Buddhist project of eliminating suffering in all sentient beings) while not believing in categories. Nagarjuna was an early anti-essentialist and also shows there is nothing European about questioning essentialism.

Lastly, we turn to Baudrillard for his own views on abolition (of the distinction between life and death), and his own blend of imminent uptopianism. True revolutionaries “speak of the world as non-separated,” and these sense informs all transpolitical activity.

Stay tuned! Next week I’ll be interviewing Dr. Peter Lindsay of GSU, and I’m sure we will have another episode soon on this abolition business.

Abolitionism Part One: Race, Gender, Class

I’m going solo this week to share with you the fruits of a book I got at the Radical Book Fair: “What Is Gender Nihilism?” I draw on essays by “Nihilist Women,” Monique Witting, Noel Ignatiev, Laboria Cuboniks, and more as I delve into gender nihilism, which means the denial that gender is a properly existent entity. The effects of its perception are not denied.

This opens the conversation onto gender abolition, which immediately brings along race abolition and tends toward class abolition. Thus, we have great cause to discuss abolishing whiteness, abolishing gender, and how they fit into the proletarian project of self-negation.

This is only part one, because next week we have a couple more essays from the reader to get to, and then citations by Marx, Debord, Baudrillard, and Nagarjuna to round out the analysis. Because we are not just satisfied with funneling identity politics into Marxism; it remains to be seen how Marxism is an identity politics and remains to be transformed by an encounter with Buddhism (Nagarjuna) and Baudrillard.

Towards a Baudrillardian Transversal Science

Recent theory on Baudrillard.

My theory hinges around the idea of the unity of mystification and clarification, the unity of the worlds of symbolic exchange and scientific rationality. This is the endpoint I seek to reach.

  1. The poverty of clarification
    1. We can never capture the world in certain terms because the world is fundamentally ineffable; as such, there is no objective world in the sense that the world is, properly speaking, not an object for us.
    2. As such, we can label the secret the set of salient “facts” which escape our perception due to the limitations of our own perspective.
    3. The Secret encapsulates what would be called one’s “true nature” if such a thing could be an object.
    4. The Secret concerns an alternately vague and foundational sense of complicity and antagonism which is not universal but transversal.
  2. The glory of mystification
    1. Mystification is valorized due to the veneration of skepticism. We seek to induce the state of the suspension of judgment because it is the most apt response to the challenge of the world.
      1. The suspension of judgment is not an end, but a beginning.
    2. Mystification takes places when given terms are destabilized.
      1. When we encounter a math problem, 2 apples plus 4 apples, we expect to get something denominated in apples at the end. Our understanding of apples didn’t change the entire time.
      2. Meanwhile, when we pursue critical activity, our object of study vanishes into its parts, or regional/global flows which constitute or determine it.
  • This insight gains its greatest traction when applied to the human faculty of reason itself, at which point reason defeats itself and we enter into the post-rational age.
  1. After the inauguration of the greater game, which takes as given the mysteriousness of the world and the arbitrariness of communication, there begins a relentless competition of whimsical metaphors.
    1. We have forgotten the game of specifying reality, of wondering who we really are. Instead we wonder how much of ourselves we can forget, and in what delicious ways we might provoke ourselves, our companions, our enemies, and the world.
    2. Forgetting rationalism’s petty frame of the individual, we once again directly encounter the world as our symbolic challenger. It is the world that did this to us, that just had to go and exist. The world did this to everyone else too, so that you can almost feel bad for them; but that would require moving one’s focus for one moment from the challenge the world presents to oneself.
  2. Mystification as Clarification
    1. Certainly, we must hold that skepticism is the most logical doctrine to uphold, and the one which is most faithful to sensuous experience. Still, the highest form of expression must be silence.
      1. Any symbols related to one’s understanding can only be understood as fingers which are close to the moon, or look just like the moon, etc. No symbol is the moon, is the ineffable substrate.
      2. Hence, we are “reduced” to silence, in reality seeing for the first time a world beyond breath, beyond rhythm in its timelessness; and knowing, for lack of a better term, that we ourselves can be in no way delimited from this timeless silence.
  • We are already bored with the divine silence. There is a reason we have created the world, to forget ourselves, to forget the divine silence.
  1. This is the spiritual analogue to Terror management theory, which says that people respond with anxiety when reminded of their death. Well, so too do people rankle at their immortality, in their communion with the divine which ensures that they are already set up with the spirit in the sky, that all of life may as well be in all good fun, a whimsy to pass the eternal moment.
  2. We reject the silence because we are attached to seemingly determinate forms, in ways that are not immediately conquerable; for example, we are seemingly trapped in our corporeal vessels, only to see what must happen to us when we die. Yet since we cannot wake up from being in our bodies, we identify with our experience. Hence, we hate to break away from whatever passing forms have caught our fancy (meaning not just media images but psychological frameworks of self), since we have given ourselves over completely to this world. We fear that to be divine silence is to be nothing, which it is.
  1. If something like skepticism is right, then it is a clearer way of looking at the world than conventional science, and has greater explanatory power, and all the metrics which scientists might value. It also musters the power to create the highest theory of all kinds, being able to dissolve all antagonisms into the root impasse of reason. In this way, the new skepticism will usher in a new era of theory, as positively pre-historic concepts such as linear time will be cleared away, and the ground made bare for the next phase of the skeptical project.
    1. We have reasoned in a circle, defining Mystification as that which makes things less clear, but which in the end must make them clearer, if only because things are themselves unclear—Bigfoot is blurry.
    2. The statement “things are unclear” sums up this contradiction, which hinges on the functioning of the word “unclear.” Is unclear a quality that a thing can have, or is it a status of qualities, so that to say things are unclear is not really to say that they are anything in particular.
  • Perhaps we can go further and clarify the problem by positing that things are “clearly unclear.” What can this mean? In this case, it is a discernable and verifiable fact that things are inscrutable and unverifiable.
  1. So, if we want to say that the world is unclear, such that it is unreasonable to conceive of oneself as knowing or even believing anything, then the status of the clarity of this statement is called into question. What can it mean?
  1. Mystification also clarifies by directly opening the door from science onto the metaphysical landscape of Nagarjuna, Nietzsche and Baudrillard. In this way, contemporary discourse is referred to a set of discourses which must overcome it.
    1. Scientific discourse is itself an inadequate response to skepticism. It posits a mishmash of verificationism, vulgar empiricism, Platonism, and fallibilism in order to feel secure in its set of statements which are never contradicted in experience.
    2. Science must take the world as given, it cannot give an inch when it comes to our certainty of an objective world, despite the fact that the science on the matter is, in fact, muddled. This betrays the fact that faith in science is the weakness of the age; as such, the weakness of science must allow for a new faith of the age.
  • The charm of science derives from its more intelligent participants, those who are able to retain intellectual humility and courage; most, like those in all fields, have succumbed to dogmatism. These sages proclaim that science opens up new mysteries for humankind.
  1. A further charm of science is its predication as a field where statements need not be true, nor thought to be true, in order to have practical effect. In this sense, science is the highest form of poetry, since many a rogue may have wished to destroy a city at one instant, but only the US army finally accomplished it at Hiroshima. This special effect was accomplished in the same way as any ballad, for scientific theories are not presumed correct; they are simply trusted until they fail.
  2. The fact that science works so well is an indication that we are on to something in our investigation of the cosmos, but also that the cosmos is on to us.
  3. Yet as soon as we realize that the most ontologically pure discourse, science, is really simply a matter of poetry and ritual as all else, the weight of this statement is itself deflated. Science has been cast as what is reasonable, the straightjacket which the mad artist seeks to escape. Now, the artist finds the scientist inside his head, and the scientist finds himself in the world. What is so special about the flights of fancy found in poetry if science partakes of the same register?
  • The emptiness of emptiness. We have shown that science is empty, it is a paper tiger. For science is contingent on events, it awaits the appearance of the world, and tries to summon the primal forces of nature, as at CERN. Science waits for the world to appear, and then studies it. Hence all scientific knowledge is provisional, as no serious scientist can contradict radical new evidence, if plausible, with the credo “But it contradicts our theories!”
  • Yet the emptiness of science is also empty, which another way of saying that it is full of Gods as is all else. As such, it too is a fertile field of inquiry for the sage. Above all, we must do away with the allergy to radically other symbolic forms which all cultural milieus possess. Hence the direct thrust into the heart of the matter, and the need to confront each person with the radically indeterminate state of the world.
  1. The object of mystical science is to respond to the challenge of the world. The challenge of the world is incarnation, the tying of awareness to a physical body and the attendant mysteries of identity and morality. Hence, all activity is directed toward responding to this challenge.
    1. Response to the challenge of the world has to do with operating under the given terms of incarnation in ways which destructure the predominant modes of signification present in society.
      1. There is no sense of vilification of society. We are fundamentally disinterested in matters of justice and dignity. What matters is that there is no drive toward anything except benevolence, as we seek to befriend all others in order to further our sense of the mystery.
      2. The challenge has to do with what is set before us. This is obviously open to interpretation, and this is where a subjective sense of what is important enters. We all choose our own starting place, and this is an important method of individuation.
      3. Responding to the challenge has to do with destabilizing the terms of the challenge. If I feel I am challenged as a person with a dysfunctional society, then how can I return serve and challenge my own sense of self or concept of society in order to move forward, or at least to move, relative to the problem space?
      4. Hence mystical science looks a lot like normal science. It is simply that statements which imply certainty are heavily policed and denigrated as incorrect and arrogant assertions.
      5. In addition, mystical science, through cognitive science, pursues the complete assimilation of philosophy and theory to the field of inquiry of science proper. All pretensions of “hard” sciences must melt into the quantum ether, and will be met in the middle by a social studies which will in the next years grow considerably more sophisticated and intricate.