Thursday, March 9, 2023

26th Series of Language

Deleuze begins this series with the statement that "Events make language possible." This describes, in a general way, the subject for the rest of the book. This series marks a dividing line or a major inflection point in The Logic of Sense as he shifts his focus to psychoanalysis in the next series and stays with it until the Appendices.

Deleuze performs his philosophy with the form of the book. In the previous series on Univocity, he said the problem has shifted to how does the individual transcend their form and syntactical link to a world. He also discussed the Eternal Return in the previous two series. After suggesting the individual transcend their syntactical link, he returns to language, and spends the remainder of the book writing about how this syntactical link gets formed. This first part of this series recapitulates and reiterates material from Series Two, Three and Four, another kind of Return. After this review, Series Twenty-Six explicitly returns to looking at what makes language possible. This series also appears isomorphic with the incorporeal line-frontier that separates bodies from propositions. It separates the first twenty-five series, primarily of philosophy (concepts and ideas), from the remaining eight series concerning the "dynamic genesis," the development of the human body from birth into what Jaques Lacan calls the Symbolic Order, i.e. incorporating language into their world. Events and sense get used interchangeably. Deleuze explicitly states their equivalence. It's equally correct to say that sense makes language possible. The verb constitutes the ring of the proposition bringing signification to bear upon denotation. A verb has two poles that it oscillates between: the infinitive which indicates the sense or event, and the present which indicates its relation to a state of affairs. It is from the verb that we infer what the ring conceals or coils up or what it reveals once it is split, unrolled or deployed over a straight line - sense or the event as the expressed of the proposition.

Thursday, February 2, 2023

25th Series of Univocity

Deleuze gives his ontology in this series as Univocity or Univocal Being. "The univocity of Being signifies that Being is Voice, that it is said, and that it is said in one and the same "sense" of everything about which it is said." This sense is that of the eternal return.

With the affirmation of divergence and disjunction as a positive synthesis, the problem has changed. It no longer appears as the alogical compatibility or incompatibility of events between each other. All events are compatible with other events. They only become incompatible with individuals, persons, or worlds. The problem now gets stated as: "knowing how the individual would be able to transcend his form and his syntactical link to a world in order to attain to the universal communication of events." Further study on Univocity can be found in Difference and Repetition, p. 35 - 42 and p. 303-304 Columbia edition. Delezue ends Difference and Repetition discussing univocal being and the eternal return.

Thursday, January 5, 2023

24th Series of the Communication of Events

Deleuze begins this series by examining causality dividing it into the causality of bodies in their depths (and the depths can go down to the quantum level), and the causality from the incorporeal effects that result - quasi-causality. Destiny results from both causes from bodies and quasi-causality. The former acts from necessity, but this shifts in quasi-causality to expression. Moving from necessity to expression suggests free will. "The Stoic paradox is to affirm destiny while denying necessity."

What are these expressive relations of events? Events appear to have relations of compatibility and incompatibility with one another. Chyrsippus looked at hypothetical propositions with conjunctions and disjunctions (eg. If it is light, it is day) and concluded they expressed their relation as a non-casual correspondence. "Astrology was perhaps the first important attempt to establish a theory of "alogical incompatibilities and non-causal correspondences. Deleuze examines identity and contradiction. Is that necessary for events? Moves to Leibniz and compossible and incompossible worlds. Moves away from Lebiniz because he excludes predicates of incompossible worlds from each other. Deleuze wants to affirm their difference have them communicate through each other through resonance. When their difference gets affirmed, but not conjoined, he calls this a disjunctive synthesis. Three kinds of synthesis: 1. connective synthesis ( "if ... ,then ...") which forms a single series. 2. conjunctive synthesis ("and) forming convergent series (worlds). 3 Disjunctive synthesis (either/or) which distributes the divergent series. Example of Nietzsche affirming the difference between his sickness and health by his gaining the know-how of reversing perspectives. Recommended reading: It helps a lot to read two of the books Deleuze cited in the previous Series - the chapter on Zeno (beginning of Book 7) from Lives of Eminent Philosophers by Diogenes Laertius and "Meditations" by Marcus Aurelius.
Also, cited in this Series, De Fato by Cicero. You can read this here.

The paper, Cicero's "De Fato" in Deleuze's "Logic of Sense" by Michael James Bennett shows the basis of quasi-causality in Stoic thought. A pdf can be downloaded here.

For more on the disjunctive synthesis, Deleuze cites the third appendix in Logic of Sense called Klossowski or Bodies-Language.

Friday, December 9, 2022

23rd Series of the Aion

This series discusses Deleuze's two opposing readings of Time, Chronos and the Aion. Chronos is presented from the point of view of Plato's philosophy. Chronos is circular, encased by God. Chronos, the present, is the time of mixtures and blendings and corporeal causes. The Stoics distinguished between good and bad mixtures, whether they spread order or chaos. The "bad mixtures" Deleuze calls the becoming-mad of the depths. This becoming-mad tries to subvert the present; this is how Chronos attempts to die. Deleuze presents the argument, via Meditations by Marcus Aurelius that another element is needed, the Aion.

The Aion is a straight line (Chronos unfolded) that goes infinitely into the past and future, but is limited because its present only lasts an instant. The Aion is the world of surface effects and allows language to be abstracted from the sounds of the body. The Aion articulates the frontier between bodies and language, between things and propositions. Pure events ground language. It is what is expressed in its independence that grounds language, i.e. sense. Events and sense are the same thing. Sense brings that which expresses it into existence. Aion lasts for an instant in the present then divides into the past and future simultaneously. Aion is the eternal truth of time: pure empty form of time. Suggested additional reading: 1. Parmenides by Plato which is a dialogue between Parmenides, Socrates and Zeno, the founder of the Stoics. 2. The section on Zeno (Book VII, first philosopher) in The Lives of the Philosophers by Diogenes Laertius. 3. Sections on the empty form of time from Difference and Repetition by Deleuze, p. 87 - 91 and p. 294 - 300 in the Columbia edition. See the index under Time for more references.

Saturday, November 26, 2022

22nd Series – Porcelain and Volcano

In this series Deleuze explores a concept he calls "the crack," a crack in the surface organization. He uses F. Scott Fitzgerald's memoir piece, The Crack-Up as a jumping off point. In it, Fitzgerald discusses the disintegration of his life comparing it to a cracked plate (porcelain). He also looks at the crack through Malcolm Lowry's novel Under the Volcano. Deleuze attributes the crack in both these cases to alcoholism and does a brief psychological analysis of that disease.

However, the crack may have a beneficial side: "If one asks why does health not suffice, why the crack is desirable, it is perhaps because only by means of the crack and at its edges does thought occur, that anything that is good and great in humanity enters and exits through it, in people ready to destroy themselves - better death than the health we are given." (Logic of Sense, p. 164 - 165 Bloomsbury edition). Deleuze wants to know if it's possible to utilize the crack without compromising our health. The crack can also be brought about by schizophrenia (Artaud & Nietzsche), drugs or sudden loss of wealth or love, etc. Is it possible to get the revelations given by drugs and alcohol without chemical means? Counter-actualization seems a key to using the crack. Counter-actualization takes a difficult or tragic event and turns it into something else. The Crack-Up is both the title of a post-humous collection of Fitzgerald's letters and short stories and the name of a particular piece containing three short memoir stories originally written for and published in Esquire magazine. In the video, I incorrectly state that it was for Vogue magazine. It is the short story, The Crack-Up, that Deleuze uses. It can be read for free at the Internet Archive by registering for a free account. It begins on page 69 at this link.
It can also be purchased here. Under the Volcano is available here.

Saturday, November 5, 2022

21st Series of the Event

Transforming hardship like a Stoic. Illustrated with the story of French poet Joe Bousquet and his wound. How he apprehended the universal truth of the pure event of his wound and through Will became a quasi-cause for transmuting it into something else; in his case, becoming a poet and writer.

The only ethics worth having - to be not unworthy of what happens to you. This relates with Nietzsche's concept of Amor Fati. Also goes into Nietzsche's concept of "ressentiment" (resentment) as an attitude of slave morality. Those who feel the events of their life seem unwarranted or unjustified - it's always someone else's fault - are full of ressentiment as are those who "pick at their sores." Touches upon the two big problems of war and death. "There is, nevertheless, a good deal of ignominy in saying that war concerns everybody. It does not concern those who use it or serve it – creatures of ressentiment." The Stoic sage, the "actor," also called the Operator in this Series - I would also call a Magician - becomes a quasi-cause relative to any event in the depth of the body that may bring misfortune (a wound) by willing the pure event with splendor and magnificence which is sense. Sense can dry up the misfortune, this gets done by the static genesis and the immaculate conception, i.e. humans who know how to produce sense. The Operator takes the splendor and contour of the pure event and transmutes the misfortune into something else. The example of Bousquet using his wound (which left him bed-ridden for life) to establish a writing career. The Operator aims to turn war against war and death against death. The paradox of the actor and the ambiguity of the event relate to the two modes of time, Chronos and the Aion. The actor actualizes the event in the present moment in a state of affairs (Chronos); the pure event always bypasses the present moment splitting into the infinite past and the infinite future. The pure event is the actor's role. Quotes from The Space of Literature by Maurice Blanchot illustrate this ambiguity.

Sunday, October 30, 2022

Live Music: Dalrymple and the Wild Daimons

 Today is the first day of the rest of your mythology.

A crack between the worlds opens up November 10th, 7:30 pm  at the historic Nevada Theater in downtown Nevada City, Ca with a concert by Dalrymple and the Wild Daimons and a special guest to open the show.

The ensemble currently performs several pieces from their forthcoming 2023 album release, We Are Gods. 

The album is a musical blueprint born out of the need to align human beings with the personification of their individual destiny, the center of the source of inherited power.

The band took their name from the Greek word for Provider/Divider of destiny/fortune, i.e. The Daimon.

“There was a Daimon in me and in the end its presence proved decisive.”

~Carl Jung

Dalrymple and the Wild Daimons was conceived in the frosty confines of the Dream Factory in the isolated winter of 2020. Part band, part comic book, part conceptual art project, they defy categorization but align with the visionary artists who inspire them, David Bowie, Bahaus, Nick Cave, Carl Orff, Terry Riley, Moondog, Alan Moore and Carl Jung to name a few.

The music of this power trio borders multiple genres and tonal expressions such as neo-classical, gothic-folk, chamber-psych, avant-rock and doomy funk, all charged with cosmic undertones.

The band is comprised of multi-instrumentalist Dalrymple MacAlpin, performing guitar, piano, synth and gut-string medieval harp along his idiosyncratic counter-tenor vocals. Dalrymple is backed up by two rhymically oriented Wild Daimons, Michael Clark on drums, gongs and percussive oddities and Michael Wronski on upright and electric bass. Guest Wild Daimon Ben Milner provides textural sonic soundscapes.

On display at their live shows will be the first 9 pages of the bands forthcoming graphic novel, Planet Daimon, written by Dalrymple and illustrated by Sacramento based artist Greycat. The graphic novel is a further extension of Dalrymple and the Wild Daimons mission statement~

“To save as many Daimons as they can from being ignored, repressed and annihilated, using the divine electricity that courses through the cosmic fields of music, art, theatre, magick and the power of active imagination. Today is the first day of the rest of your mythology.”

Get your tickets HERE

For more information or to listen to their new single Blood on the Concrete (mixed and mastered by Yours Truly) go THERE to their website.