Additional Remarks on the Relentless Honesty of Ludwig Wittgenstein

Consider Wittgenstein´s chief philosophical problem was how logical sentences can be translated into ethical sentences (and the impossibility of that). The Tractatus was an undertaking to reveal the structure of the world which ended with the conclusion that a logical analysis cannot account for the „mystical“ aspects of our existence, i.e. the truly interesting ones. The philosophy of the elderly Wittgenstein was then to undermine and deeply question the foundations of the supposed logical structure of the world (i.e. whereas the Tractatus and related philosophy would imply an ideal language and ideal logic, the Philosophical Investigations shatter such a notion and imply that there is no deep structure of language but that language evolves via practice and is prone to produce misunderstandings, etc.). In between there was Wittgenstein´s Lecture about Ethics (held when he came back to Cambridge in 1930) where he stressed that stuff like „the supreme good“ are not logical expressions but metaphors and, within a logical language, „unreasonable“ – that´s their nature. – Colin Wilson remarked that Wittgenstein was an odd fellow who was keenly aware of the problem of ethics in philosophy and that it cannot be resolved by logical „talking“, only to evade it and spend the rest of his life (logically) „talking“. Wittgenstein´s „nephew“, Paul, remarked that the two elder brothers of Ludwig, who (apparently) commited suicide, would have been even greater geniuses than Ludwig, for instance more poetically talented etc. – Remember, however, that, according to the Tractatus, the meaning of a sentence cannot be said, the meaning of something can only „reveal“ itself. And so, while Wittgenstein was silent as a moral philosopher, it was the way he lived his life with which he gave example and illustration of the ethical that is of objective importance (same can be said of Kafka and Beckett). Intentionally or not, this illustrates the great man. Talking about ethics or moral systems sooner or later leads to dead ends or contradictions, but Wittgenstein´s ethical conduct of life was (largely) free of contradictions.

Ethics and logics: There are things I am responsible for. If I take care for the things I am responsible for, I am ethical. If I deny it, I am unethical. If I take care for things I am not responsible for, my ethical conduct is superior. If I take this notion of ethical supremacy to its logical consequence, I will always be a failure, since the limits within which I can operate are narrow (which often produces crises within ethically supreme individuals). Maybe the categorical imperative of the supreme good is to treat the other better than he treats you.

Whether the universe is ethical: I think Einstein said our most basic choice is whether we think we live in a benevolent or a malevolent cosmos. The concept of Shakespeare´s/Verdi´s Jago or of the sadistic raisonneurs in the novels of Marquis de Sade of a malevolent, malicious God who creates things only to destroy them cannot be ruled out logically – however, they´re the cosmology of sociopaths. The philosopher and metaphysicist will be very interested and likely to get immersed into the stuff he investigates and he will develop high empathy for them (as a common characteristic of the exceptionally gifted). Therefore the philosopher will be a kind of ethical enthusiast. Let us generalise the ethical into „constructiveness“. It is, maybe, a transcendental principle, or a Transzendentalpragmatik, to think of a deep ground of the ontological as well as of the epistemological as something that is based on constructiveness. Philosopher Emmanuel Levinas comes up with the idea that the ethical is primary to anything else. To him, the ethical is respect for the other and the face of the other which is (as it is not identical to my face) the infinite. That we confront the other in this world, respectively our worldview and any knowledge of the world can only (effectively) constituted via the confrontation with the other, is something primary, and that we have to get along with the other is something primary. However, if the other is full of shite, my patience will sooner or later come to an end; apart from that some others are more proximate to me than other others, and great hostilities and wars are not caused by human hatred or disrespect for the other´s face but by natural interest conflicts. Friedrich Nietzsche, probably the most intelligent of philosophers, remarked (in the subsequent introduction to Morgenröte) that all philosophers have tried to make ethics the foundation of their work and their systems – and every time, it collapsed! Hence, he began to question ethics and moral themselves. Otto Weininger, who was probably even more intelligent than Nietzsche, wrote the probably greatest work on Individualethik which is, however, remembered as fiercely antisemitic and misogynist today and shot himself dead at an early age for obscure reasons: one of his final conclusions was that the supreme good cannot be achieved by the individual, what remains is the idea of the supreme good, as a guiding light. Wittgenstein was very fond of Weininger, but for obscure reasons considered his work as a colossal though grandiose mistake later in life.

Not long ago they had a Henry Fonda retrospective at the Filmmuseum Wien. There I saw The Grapes of Wrath (1940). The Grapes of Wrath is about uprooted and impoverished farmers who fall prey to obscene capitalism in the depression years. The film opens as Tom (Henry Fonda) is released from prison and tries to go back to his family´s farm (only to find it sold to capitalists). On the way he meets former preacher Jim Casy (John Carradine), who once baptised him but now has ceased to be a preacher as he had „lost his faith“, and refrains to make ethical judgements anymore since, as he found out, people are just doing what they are doing (and there is probably neither sin nor virtue). Unassuming and friendly, and somehow carrying silent wisdom, he joins the family as they move to California to find work. Shocked by the conditions impoverished farmers/proletarians fall prey to, he courageously helps a person that is persecuted by the law and finally dies as he tries to organise a strike against inhuman conditions (something that Tom opposed in the first place but later finds out that Jim was right to do – Tom´s history somehow repeats itself as he unintentionally kills the person that deadly hits Jim, and although the government becomes protective of the workers, Tom has to flee and leave his family again in the end). Jim Casy is a Christ-like figure, he has ceased to preach, he has ceased to judge, he just helps and supports and he does the right thing even if it means self-sacrifice. He has a calming presence. Occassionally there are people with such a calming presence, like Wolfgang, or Erich. At any rate, I want to dedicate this note to the memory of ex-preacher Jim. And as I can see on Wikipedia, the real-life inspiration for the character of Jim Casy was Ed Ricketts. So I also want to include Ed Ricketts in that.

Remarks on the Relentless Honesty of Ludwig Wittgenstein

Personality disorders and emotional biases are something that does not evaporate at the higher levels of cognitive ability, as far as I can see. Whereas the main philosophical subject of my first book (Yorick) was the prison of subjectivity and the downsides of principium individuationis, the subsequent (and considerably less successful) ones have been about breaking the flesh prison and transcend personality to get an unbiased look at the world – they followed immediate bodily urges headed towards transcendence, quite painful ones, like my chest breaking open due to high internal pressure (i.e. there are internal states that are truly (and universally) meaningful and that cannot be philosophised away as a (mis)reading of Wittgenstein might imply). The transcendent mind is the honest. Yesterday when I started writing this note and wrote most of the subsequent paragraphs I intented to write about honesty in intellectuals e.g. Freud and, more significantly, Marx, both strong and determined and humanistic Aufklärer who however also were mystifiers and fanatics due to their emotions i.e. dishonest, but now I don´t feel like doing that at great length and in general I do not like it to be overly critical of others, not least I wanted to write about the biases and dishonesty of their followers which lies in that they have a (usually above average-penetrating) insight into a fragment of society which they then mistake as a glorious insight into the whole and want to spill it over the whole and they aren´t good at distinguishing descriptive from normative shit, etc., however it came to my mind recently that politics is an arena where forces (motivated by various interests) clash anyway, not a sphere of harmony and stability of reason: it is agonal, history, at large, a somehow mitigated chaos anyway, it is just that the Absolute Mind will be a somehow detached observer of that all. (That politics is agonal is something Marx said and where he clarified something, however he mystified it when he reduced it to the primacy of class struggle and when he said that the stupid proletariat is the locus of absolute truth; I wanted to say that it is, on the whole, amazing how a person as intelligent and seemingly sober as Marx who could generate powerful insights on the one hand could be so blind to the shortcomings and the reductionism in them on the other hand … probably because of this he became a much less productive intellectual in the second half of his life; there are assumptions that the elderly Marx ruminated a lot about whether his framework wasn´t somehow too simplistic and for instance he ruminated in a conversation about the possibility that it wasn´t class struggle as the supposed prime mover of history but rivalries between nations, but nowhere he systematically elaborated on that (and other stuff) and he does not even seem to have systematically thought about that (and other stuff); he had written the voluminous Grundrisse within months because he anticipated a crisis of capitalism and wanted to have a theoretical framework ready, the crisis came indeed but, however, was not an indication of a final cataclysm of capitalism, thunderbirds in the sky, as he had thought/hoped, but just a cloud that passed; in the latter part of his life he endlessly wrote on Capital (and could not complete it, though much of its content is already contained in the Grundrisse), whereas in his former years he had ejected profound writings on a somehow annual basis; maybe Marx did not want to weaken the worker´s movement by casting doubt on Marxism, but what seems more apparent is that Marx was actually incapable of doing that; I need to closer investigate this and somewhere in the future will write on Marx.) The friendly Zen masters teach us that out of 10.000 people who want to reach true Satori, 3 or 4 will finally do (which however does not invalidate Satori as an ideal that gives orientation and triggers aspiration and where convergence to it is fractal-like anyway: Should the Transbodhidharma come, also Bodhidharma will look a bit stupid, etc.). Perfect Satori, realisation of Absolute Mind/Master Intellect/Omega Mind or Cosmic Consciousness, as R.M. Bucke calls it, is something individuals like Laotse or (according to Bucke) Shakespeare or Balzac have achieved, however (according to Bucke) Walt Whitman was the first one in history who did not „succumb“ to Cosmic Consciousness as a somehow supreme instance (and then founded a religion or cult, or made unearthly things next to the most rational ones, like Pascal), but made it, well, instrumental and a tool for himself. If I am correct that was what I was thinking as well when fantasising about the #whitelodge. I am aware that this paragraph, because of its density, unelaboratedness and excessive jumping between disciplines, will be a bit unintelligible to people (at the first reading, but exegesis is, of course, possible) but I don´t fucking care and I just do what I like.

Shortly after Wittgenstein had withdrawn from philosophy and became an elementary school teacher in Lower Austria he wrote to Russell that he´s under the impression that the people of rural Austria are even worse than anywhere else (Russell, however, tried to calm him and replied that he thinks that they are just as bad as anywhere else). It has been noted that Wittgenstein beated his pupils when he lost his nerves with them. He tried to be constructive with them, however. When they had a hiking day and walked through the woods and a child became scared of the scenario, Wittgenstein approached him and said: „Hast du Angst? Dann musst du nur ganz fest an Gott denken.“ After Wittgenstein turned into philosophy and had gone to Cambridge again, he became himself ethically anxious and ruminated about his „sins“ because he was such an ethically conscious person. („What are you thinking about?“, someone would ask him. „Logics, or your sins?“ „Both“, Wittgenstein would reply.) The following Christmas holidays, when he had been in Vienna again, he took the uncomfortable trip over the Wechsel (a four hour trip in the midst of winter) to offer his sincere apologies to the girl he had brutally beaten years before. Meanwhile a woman, she replied with an indifferent „ja, ja“, and Wittgenstein had to take another four hour trip back home (over the Wechsel). Such was Wittgenstein. – When Wittgenstein gradually died from cancer he wrote in a letter to a friend that he was not fond about good news that his health had become better again after the first bad diagnosis, since he „did NOT have the wish to live much longer“, because, although he wasn´t very old physiologically, he had an „old soul“. Some years later when his doctor told him the end is finally close, he replied: „Good!“ His last words on his death bed, before he lost consciousness, were: „Tell them I´ve had a wonderful life.“ Such was Wittgenstein.

As I prepare to write a note about Marcel Duchamp I have just read Calvin Tomkins` biography (now for the, I guess, fourth time) and there it is mentioned that gallerist Sidney Janis was very fond of Duchamp, as he found that Duchamp was nearly the only artist he had ever met who had the „inner security“ to tolerate vastly different viewpoints and approaches as well and who was interested in art and artists very different from himself as well – as Sidney put it, he did not consider it necessary to „defend“ his own approach all the time (the other only artist he had ever met to be like that was Mondrian). I reiterate: (According to Janis) Duchamp and Mondrian were the only two artists who had such a quality of „inner security“, which I, a worm, would not have expected to be associated with great security, honesty or bravery at all but just a natural human quality. (I also want to write a note about Mondrian because 1) his wonderful, soaring in higher regions-name 2) the harmony of his spheres 3) because in Kunst des 20. Jahrhunderts edited by Walther it is noted that of all the De Stijl artists who all wanted to reach harmony, Mondrian was the only one to actually achieve it.) – Note however that artists and people in general are usually not as bad as their reputation, quite frequently they are quite ok and when you meet them personally they are nicer than their behaviour on the internet would imply.

Wittgenstein is acknowledged as being the only philosopher who has developed two different philosophies in his lifetime (as a matter of honesty). However, I do not find it outer space to develop a (seemingly) different philosophy every week. I guess if the Hegelian Absoluter Geist is realised, there will be only one philosophy, it will be a consciousness over all the other philosophies, and it will be fully identical to itself. (Whether the realisation of the Absolute Geist pays off is something I don´t know though.)

P.S.: There is an early portrait of Wittgenstein at age 1. The physiognomy is already very impressive.

The relentless honesty of Ludwig Wittgenstein

Rationality, Hyperrationality and Metarationality

Rationality means someone acts according to reason, i.e. thinks about cause and effect, adequacy of means and ends, intersubjectivity, a favorable outcome that is understandable for anyone not deluded (i.e. somehow according to the Kantian categorial imperative). It means you are not (immediately) slave to (blind) emotions. There are different and somehow distinguished types of reason (and e.g. postmodernism and critical theory, in their attempt to liberate us, probably have denounced natural forms of reason as alienations („instrumental reason“, „culture industry“ , etc) or inflated our notion about the heterogeneity of reason too much (but that is not as much a problem as anti-postmodernists are inclined to think)). Max Weber distinguishes between wertrational (value-rational) and zweckrational (goal/instrumental-rational), where zweckrational means orientation towards a rational outcome and wertrational means acting and reasoning in a rational way according to values (which, themselves, are not rationally investigated). Other types of action are, says Weber, emotional/affective action and traditional action (which are not rational). Rationality will be the dominant thinking mode of the somehow intelligent person. How much a person can distinguish himself from the downsides of Wertrationalität is a matter of psychology. Whereas strict Wertrationalität makes the stubborn fanatic, complete ideological/emotional unbiasedness is rarely ever there among humans, and, irrespective of what Western or Eastern enlightenment (KantHegelMarxetc vs. TaoZenShankaraetc) propose, there are probably no thoughts that are not based or come in with emotions at any rate.

Hyperrationality means permanently adjusting his worldview and actions to that what the sober rational insight demands. The hyperrational person will have insight and (at least a rational) access to that that is wertrational, zweckrational as well as affectual and traditional, and overview over the grand scheme and over the fabric of society which means that in his understanding of society (i.e. of the great heterogeneity) the hyperrational person will be flexible, fluid, experienced and quick. In order to execute hyperrational understanding over complex problems (i.e. problems to which there are, opposed to complicated problems, no definite solutions) a high crystallised intelligence is necessary (that will be accumulated via a vivid fluid intelligence). Hyperrationality means a higher level of awareness than mere rationality and, at least concerning the intellectual insight, less stubbornness, but does not rule out stubbornness due to emotional reasons. High intelligence means someone is likely to draw correct rational/logical conclusions from assumptions, however this does not mean the assumptions are correct, their selection can be heavily ideologically biased, and that high IQ persons have the same petty political opinions (or petty understandings in many other domains) and use the same weak rationalisations to justify their emotional or tradition-based choices as persons with a very low IQ is quite frequently the case. The probable downside of hyperrationality are detachedness from the living world and missed opportunities, but that need not be the case.

The genius is commonly perceived as an eminently or hyperrational person who seemingly also has access to the irrational (respectively to the abstractions of the irrational and to the aesthetic realm). They develop their rational concepts by asking themselves questions like how it would be if one travels along a ray of light, or they test their hypotheses by putting a blunt needle in their eye or endanger their eyes because of gazing into the sun. While such questions (and actions) are not actually irrational, they are not likely to come to the mind of a person who has a purely rational epistemology and way to look at things. It is difficult to sort out the true nature of that (and probably it is not one thing only), but the genius thinks eminently intuitively as well as counterintuitively and (apparently) paradoxical, and, in a way, ultradialectic, as he throws up many ideas and then tries to illuminate them from all different angles, with not much propensity to favour a specific angle over others (while on the other hand usually being extremely value-oriented concerning a universe that makes sense, which made Newton a theological alchemist and Einstein opposing quantum mechanics, i.e. somehow stubbornly irrational). It is as if the genius can see into an additional dimension that is invisible to others, obviously due to capability of making plethora of (counter/intuitive) associations to any given concept (which, in a genuine way, is no necessary quality of mere intelligence and convergent thinking, but of creativity and divergent thinking, respectively, as Cooijmans calls it, associative horizon). However, it usually turns out that the genius just sees what is so obvious and rational that other people, due to their indoctrinations, don´t see it, because he brings back a very basic rationality to the perspective (that gravity is a force and means curvature is, upon reflection, actually quite obvious). Let us say the basic/dominant way of thinking of the genius is metarationality.

Spirituality, Mysticism and Religion

More recently I purchased CDs with Masses by Orlando de Lassus, Hymns and Songs of the Church by Orlando Gibbons, some cool CDs from the Harmonia Mundi label with music for Epiphany and for Corpus Christi, and some other early music. I attended Christmas Mass at the Russian Orthodox Church this year and got me some CDs with respective music, I occasionally listen to Renaissance music on the internet and years ago I bought a CD with works by Thomas Tallis (motivated by the Fantansia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis by Vaughan Williams, which is very beautiful). Apart from the ethereal vibration of that kind of music, resemblant to that of Scelsi, I was always attracted by the sacral, though I am not actually a religious person and not exactly a believer. But I seem to have always liked gravitas and sincerity, and the mix of sublime and the celestial as well as piety and humility, specifically expressed in such a kind of music. It gives me a sense of the gravitas and sincerity, the depth of the world – with, however, the deep ground not being a hostile or nihilistic abyss, but something that cares and protects, unobtrusively, even if that is only a mirror image of myself amidst cosmic indifference. Think of darkness in a late november evening, there is a cabin in the woods where inside there is a subtle light that illuminates and warms. That is the religious deep ground of the world.

Spirituality means a heightened and intimate intellectual/ethical/emotional attachedness to the world, somehow resulting in transcendence of personality and a transcendent perception of the world. There is a notion of a certain amalgmation of subject and object/world, respectively with the transcendent (God, infinity, nature, Tao et al.). It should bring about tenderness and familiarity with all that exists. A spiritual disposition can exist in a person per se and need not be something difficult to achieve; spiritual attachedness can be to anything, there is also superstitious or occult spirituality, or it can be a tool for a person´s narcissism.

Mysticism on the one hand refers to a deep (and very sincere) connection to the world, but to (aspects of) a world that is not immediately there but that are concealed, mysterious, deep and profound. The true mystic experience is considered to be a matter only for a very elevated mind, the mystic´s path usually involves pain, profound life experience and some sort of asceticism. Mysticism also refers to the unio mystica, i.e. the becoming one with God or with the supreme or primal instance of existence (e.g. infinity or Tao). It is not as plebeian as „mere“ spirituality, but maybe invokes false sense of grandiosity and megalomania. Mysticism involves some potential for obscurantism and diverse hallucinations, or it can be a tool for a person´s narcissism.

Religion etymologically refers to „careful consideration“ and devotion to the commandments. Unlike spirituality and mysticism it primarly refers to awe and deep respect for a higher instance that is forever out of our reach, and that is, finally, intangible. Although I am not exactly a religious person I referred elsewhere that I appreciate the idea of gravitas involved in that sentiment and that, although not exactly a believer, I like the idea of thinking of an instance that is forever more intelligent and better than myself and considering what it might say to me and how the instance would judge me, somehow like Kierkegaard´s jubilation about the idea that „against God we are always in the wrong“. Religion is a means for imposing power of a ruling class over people and also a means for giving an identity to people and a collective. Holding on to religious beliefs may be primarily based on lack of creativity and need not change or elevate a person very much (i.e. a paranoid person will have a paranoid understanding of religion, an anxious person an anxious one; good and altruistic persons will see it as an amplifier of goodness and altruism, etc.), or it can be a tool for a person´s narcissism.

To truly experience spirituality, mysticism or religion i.e. to increase attachment to the world and establish communication with the horizon of the world (i.e. the transcendent), it needs to involve the fundamental aspects of spirituality, mysticism and religion. Spirituality, mysticism and religion is a kind of trinity. Einstein´s „Cosmic Religion“ (based on awe for the sublimal depth and harmony of the universe and the quasi-sanctity of the truth-seeker) is like that and an expression of the extreme „mystical“ immersion and empathy of Einstein´s scientific mind and may be the expression of a religious sentiment in a modern, scientifically enlightened age, and gives a sense of how correct balance of the individual and the (horizon of) the world can be achieved, and, bearing that in mind, on rare occasions even be transcended: Extremely sophisticated and pure individuals like Sufi mystics Attar of Nishapur or Bayezid Bastemi are even in the position to argue and express anger (however: not revolt) against God, due to his shortcomings, occasionally they win the argument, occasionally they lose.

I see the spirituality/mysticism/religion trinity as a kind of sun before me, however it shrinks to a shining sun (or white dwarf) in my hand, maybe I move along, there are other planets surrounding me as well, but that one is, of course, important.

Metaphysical Note about Extreme Metal

More recently I purchased the following CDs:

  • Abyssal: Antikatastaseis
  • Adverserial: D.E.N.A.T.B.K.O.N.
  • Mitochondrion: Archaeaon
  • Pyrrhon: Growth Without End
  • Sarpanitum: Blessed Be My Brothers
  • This Gift Is A Curse: All Hal The Swinelord

I welcome it that after a period of stagnation there are fresh and fruitful developments in extreme metal again! While extreme metal bands of former generations like Morbid Angel or Meshuggah sounded like if they came from another planet, bands like Abyssal, Pyrrhon or Mitochondrion sound as if they directly came from the depths of outer space (maybe from close to the region where Azathoth dwells). I call this progressive. Within those song structures we have nice chaos invocation and abstract beauty amalgamated with uncanniness giving an impression of the sublime. It gives you a sense of place – of belonging and forlornness. Of your attachedness and your seperatedness in the universe, etc. It´s a borderline, exurbia and edge phenomenon; look at how ambiguous it is and how much enigmatic meaning it carries, permanently shifting the Great Frontier! It´s metaphysical.

What I always liked about extreme metal is that it definitely confronts you with other, strange worlds (that aren´t so strange after all and for instance the occasional lyrics about Satan etc. are much more realistic and less phony than the love songs you hear on the radio). – It is both strange and surreal, and hyperrealistic and more human than human. It adds a (or multiple) dimensions to your perception. It confronts you with that that is the other and that that is unexpected. It unites the hemispheres.

„WESTERN“ METAPHYSICS

Let us, ideally, say that the „Western“ mind is analytical, scientific. It is about isolating and analysing things to gain rational knowledge about the thing, with the possibility (or the permanent horizon) to get to know the „thing in itself“. It strives for knowledge to manipulate things and transform civilisation via technology. It is concerned with the possibility of solid knowledge.

„EASTERN“ METAPHYSICS

Let us, ideally, say that the „Eastern“ mind, exemplified e.g. in the metaphysics of Zen, is more about getting to know and experiencing the faculty of perception and rationalisation itself. It is about dissolving the subject and amalgamating it with the object world, into a state of (for the sake of simplicity) productive mimesis. However, this state will involve serenity and sedateness, an acceptance of a certain resistance of things against manipulation and an acceptance of fate. It is concerned with the possibility of solid awareness.

UNPRODUCTIVE SYNTHESIS

Bhagwan says, people in the East have soft, fragmentary egos, and they are able to surrender and devotion (Hingabe) easily – yet their surrender is not very deep: it remains superficial. People of the West have strong and solid egos, and they are resistant towards surrender and spirituality. He concludes that a person that synthesises East and West may become something that is really interesting and transformative, but that is difficult.

„Eastern“ metaphysics somehow was designed as a pacification from unproductive upheaval and turmoil in a pre-scientific age i.e. when things could not fundamentally be changed. „Eastern“ metaphysics does not „solve“ the metaphysical problems but dissolves them, but unfortunately may also dissolve physics respectively the scientific mind, and its relaxedness may result in apathy, the insight that some things cannot be changed may make people forget to try to. The „Western“ metaphysics of the rational mind may lead to a tunnel vision and feelings of estrangement and disconnectedness from a greater whole, a disrespect for „soft“ sciences and arrogance. The „Eastern“ downside is being unscientific, the downside of the „West“ is being soulless. From a sociological point of view, Eastern societies are collectivist societies whereas Western societies are individualistic societies (with both easily abhoring each other or finding each other uncanny, although the productive synthesis includes the better elements of both).

THE CONSCIOUSNESS OF THE OVERMAN (PRODUCTIVE SYNTHESIS)

It is said East and West are very different and difficult to unite. They are respective others. However, if you approach the other you can gradually internalise it. The trick is not to make the other a toy of your ideology and accomodate it to you, but to take it serious. The full internalisation of the man´s world is the overman. It can also be described as the so-called unitary consciousness where all forms of life, where reality, dream, fiction, time, space, matter unite into a single, fluid, penetrating experience, where contours of individualities do not dissolute but become osmotic. The analytical mind is not pacified but intensified and empowered. There is not perfect exchangeability of background and motif as you have it in the vision of Zen, rather a fractal geometry of the universe, i.e. where the „deep structure“ can be progressively revealed and calculated and where there is no stubborn resistance against „inconvenient“ truths or discoveries, since nothing is truly „inconvenient“.

By permanently approaching and confronting the other, you increase your experience and widen your perception. By trying to integrate the other and internalise it, you widen your intellect and your personality, and you reduce your indoctrinations and your ego (if, however, you don´t have much of an ego in the first place). You transcend personality into the transpersonal and become open space. It is very profound.

Meaning of life – and meaning in general – lies in establishing connections (and pathological/endogenous depression means inability to establish true connections to anything). By connecting to the other, the most wide-ranging and permanently evolving connectivity is possible. Overmen usually appear „otherworldly“ (whereas they are also the most realistic persons) because they primarily relate to the other and to their respective counterpart (Socrates and Kierkegaard talked to anyone in the streets, T.W. Hickinson noticed that obscure Emily Dickinson was very aware and concerned about him as her counterpart, Shakespeare is hardly tactile as an individual but rather seems a transpersonalised consciousness over the tapestry of life, Wittgenstein, Kafka and Beckett were also very concerned about others including the possibility of self-sacrifice, etc.). Therefore, they include otherness and the Great Other in themselves and therefore they carry and execute the so-called divine law in themselves. They appear „alien“ as nothing is alien to them. And why? Because they actually relate to the other!

 

(Written 2015-2017)

Postsciptum: If you think this is stupid and esoteric wait for the various Postscripts to the Metaphysical Note about Extreme Metal which shall appear over time since of course I am able to discuss Kripke and Quine as well, as well as Gadamer and Ricoeur et al.

Prelude to the Metaphysical Note about Extreme Metal

Carl Schmitt, Leo Strauss Meet the Hipster

Carl Schmitt has to be understood as a guy obsessed about order. As a young conservative intellectual in the Weimar Republic he was concerned with the question how a modern state derives its legitimacy, as the influence of religion and the church had waned, monarchies had been overthrown, no consensus and self-conception of democracy had been established and (bourgeois, capitalistic) democracy was under siege from left and right – in such a turbulent age it was actually no mean question about how the modern state could actually be grounded. After the Nazis took power, Schmitt became a member of the NSDAP and although his career suffered a major setback already in 1936, he remained „Kronjurist“ of the Third Reich. After the defeat of the Reich he ruminated, somehow enigmatically, about himself and his role in history (with important writings that expose the core of his thinking been published posthumeously). At the core, Schmitt was a conservative Catholic and his central obsession was that human action had to be grounded in the divine relevation, i.e. in the law of God. He opposed relativism, liberalism and modernity and held antisemitic views. One of his best-known concepts is that the political is about the relationship between friend and foe, and therein an autonomous, and primary, sphere of human existence. In a modern, „pacified“, democratic world, the primacy of the political would easily be forgotten, but could easily break into reality again, as a principal, fundamental conflict within the community (or between communities) of what is, fundamentally, right and what is wrong (respectively about who is friend and who is foe). As tensions mount, the sovereign could call for emergency rule (and, to Schmitt, he is the actual sovereign who can impose emergency rule). Schuh once called Schmnitt a „razor-sharp“ thinker: that is actually what he was – with the apparent consequence that Schmitt was rather not very vocal when it came to think about nuances and that plurality and vagueness are things that make up reality as well (also he was not very vocal when it came to depict what a friend is, but concentrated on outlining the qualities of the foe). In such respects, liberal, postmodern thinking is a nemesis on Schmitt – but Schmitt is also a nemesis for the liberal and postmodern approach. At any rate, Schmitt was a relevant and original political thinker – and when Kojève visited Germany once he said that he would only go to Plettenberg, as Schmitt was the only person in Germany worthy of intellectual conversation. When he was examined after the second World War about his collusion with Nazism, Schmitt describd himself to be an „intellectual adventurer“.

Leo Strauss has to be understood as someone concerned about the role of philosophy and the philosopher vs the realm of the political. That is, in fact, the central question of the oeuvre of Strauss. The political/public realm is where faith and opinions (and, notably, interests) dominate and complexity is not very well understood nor welcomed – the zeal of philosophy is to find out and establish truth (which the public sphere of course also wants and needs), hence the relation between the philosopher and the political is a potentially conflictual one: And Strauss` work mainly elaborates on that conflict in its many facets. Strauss placed great emphasis on the hermeneutic principle that a thinker has to be understood the way he understood himself – and not be abused as a toy to underline one´s own peculiar opinion. Likewise, Strauss also considered the philosopher, and the role of philosophy in the political realm, as one of questioning authority in order to search for truth, to escape from a Plato´s cave of wrong our outdated concepts and perceptions – therein, Strauss also had some reservations against political philosophy as establishing conclusive theory (that somehow longs for totalitarianism of itself and may be supportive to authority) but rather was affirmative of philosophy as a permanent questioning: Socrates was an important figure for Strauss. Strauss´ works were comments on other philosophers and he refuted „originality“ in favor of adressing the great and everlasting questions and truths which are, therefore, anonymous (he said that the gravity of a thinker does not lie in his originality but in his capability to adress the great fundamental questions). Like Schmitt, Strauss was a conservative who opposed liberalism and modernity in favor of divine revelation which alone can be absolute guidance for human action. Law also had to be based on natural law, a sentiment that includes elitism. As a community is made out of individuals of different talent, Strauss voices for a meritocracy of the most talented individuals, of „gentlemen“, as democracy leads to populism and decline – the philospher is not wanted by the hostile and envious masses, so the spirit of the philosopher has to be institutionalised by enlightened leaders. The American neoconservatives drew some inspiration from Strauss, although also Strauss, like Schmitt, is a more comphrehensive guy. Strauss commented on Schmitt´s book about the political as realm of distinction between friend and foe, largely favorable (Strauss was a Jew and Schmitt a Nazi at that time) and tried a synthesis with Hobbes´ political philosophy (i.e. that order has to be imposed on a state of virtual anarchy among humans). Both Schmitt and Strauss saw conflicts between men as something unavoidable and profound, as inescapable and out of man´s control, hence as something „metaphysical“.

The hipster cannot be adequately understood. Despite it is being claimed that this phenomenon with its allegedly striking appearance is the big thing of our time (although his heyday he may have already had in the past of the last decade), I cannot sense it so easily. I deliberately walked through hipsteresque places like Neubau or the Museumsquartier recently again, and then there is also the Brunnenmarkt or the Karmelitermarkt and stuff, and although it is frequently quite fancy there, I cannot see stereotypical hipsters (supposedly with beards, undercuts etc.) there, nor even bobos (Vienna is, of course, not a hipster capital like Berlin or, as they say, Portland, Oregon, but if I understand this correct we are talking about a cultural phenomenon that has allegedly spread at least over the Western world). Of course, I do not see hipsters, nor people in general, I only see Buddhas when I look into the world =“> And it annoys me how negativistic people are of each other: Georg opens a new bar and S. and O. and, and, and… spread negativity: Look at the shitty bobo bar! – although it is a quite casual bar and not specifically boboesque! Such a thing happens all the time among humans! – Of course, upon reflection, I also do not feel completely at home in diverse fancy places, although they are not hipsteresque to me; as far as I can see it is where a younger and relatively educated audience dwells, which, however, cannot be subsumed to be bobo or hipster – with the indication that the bobo and the hipster do not actually exist. I find it sad that I do not have a true overview over the social realm, but if someone claims he has, it might just be a hallucination, for instance people complaining about other people, that they are under par where, in reality, they just do not conform to their worldview, the old generation complaining about the youth, and the like… What I hear about the young generation is that they are indeed unpolitical and quite focused about their career and their looks and their lifestyle. It is not a rebellious but quite conformist youth (which doesn´t mean that such a thing would be completely wrong). Bertl, who is a bit older than me but studies at the university now claims there isn´t much to conversate with the youngsters: Though they are pessimistic about the future, they are optimistic about their personal future (which might be accurate) and, in general, „bei denen geht´s um nichts mehr“. They are not rebels, do not adress society at all, like we did, they are private and bourgeois and they do not have any message to tell. – Then there is this thing called hipster black metal! I also cannot sense the vital ingredients of metal – like obscurity, challenging attitude, schizotypal creativity, antisocial stance, outsiderdom and individuality et al. – in there. It is (hipsteresque) independent musicians that have conquered some metal style but do not transport a metal message! It is, obviously, about individuality, but not about an obscure and rebellious, truly schizotypal individuality of the outsider! It does happen at some fancy, elitist margins of society, not outside society, like a concert of a true band like Rotten Sound or Brutal Truth. Hence, it is not actually a metal culture. (Note also that the hipster does not want to be a hipster and when he asked whether he is one, he will decline.)

If we try to understand the hipster however, we refer to the common narrative of the hipster being someone who tries to pronounce his fancy individuality in a millenial age. He is, and wants to be, socially included as well as excluded. In reality, he is socially included and has no desire for true outsiderdom although usually comes up with such a style as a means of elitist, dandyesque destinction. He is avant-gardist as he longs to be the first to spot new, fancy trends and he wants to be cool. He usually does not create art but longs to work in the „creative industry“ and likes to see himself rather like a curator or an initiated consumer of art. He embraces both high and (supposedly) low level art and culture, is heterogenous and eclectic, but not as a natural manifestation of true creativity but as a means of distinction. He opposes the „mainstream“, not because of the void it carries but because he wants to be special. He is not very political and career-motivated – which need not be a bad thing, but often is. He is flexible and, actually, gas-like, as he does not stick to anything in substance and everything becomes exchangeable and disposable to him and he does away with things when they cease to be regarded as „cool“. As he is not fundamentalist, he is ironic – in a likeable way as irony is intelligent, resisitant to a totalitarian and absolutist sentiment and pluralistic, and unlikeable as it runs against true commitment and true intelligence which is about sorting the real thing out. Despite his ironic attitude, the hipster may be quite arrogant or at least blasé (like the avant-gardist or dandy, but without creating true elite culture). He cares about quality of food and may open up fancy restaurants (which is also a plus) but may not care much about animal rights. Sociologically, the hipster may be interpreted as an expression of a homogenisation of society because of increasingly blurred traditional (class) distinctions and stratifications (i.e. the hipster actually being bourgeois, bohemian and exploited proletarian all alike) while, however, distinctions and stratifications are still in place (and are, on the one hand, denied, but also fiercely affirmed and established by the hipster). In terms of gender the somehow feminine/androgynous appearance of the hipster signifies the softening of traditional gender roles. Someone has said, with his zeal for individuality, the hipster is an expression that true individuality is less and less common (or more and more difficult to achieve, or that true or aristocratic individuality or genius is not what is wanted in our time). – As far as I can see there are friendly hipster (?) bars/shops etc. with extremely friendly hipsters (usually females) as well as there are arrogant and unfriendly ones. I recently read a book by Philipp Ikrath (Die Hipster) in which he ruminated that the hipster (who is a youngster now but may occupy positions of power in society in the future i.e. be the coming ruling class and therefore is a relevant object to study) with his non-binding nature is the end of all politics – as solidified positions do not really matter anymore and everything becomes exchangeable, politics in the traditional (and, maybe, any) sense loses its meaning or at least significance. And that was the main motive for writing this note as it sprang to my mind how this would relate to a view on politics as we have it with Schmitt (and Strauss)! 

To philosophise about the hipster, Ikrath comes up with Richard Rorty´s ideal type of the ironic. Opposed to the metaphysicist, who sticks to a concept of absolute truth that governs it all and of life being subjected to subjugate to that absolute truth, including the possibility of personal sacrifice, the ironic denies that there ever is such an absolute truth. Which does not mean that the ironic is a nihilist, just that he would refute absolutist claims. The ironic is constructivistic, embraces plurality and is lenient and tolerant. He is aware of the relativity of all being, and there is no „jargon der eigentlichkeit“ as something the metaphysicist strives for so deeply. Irony works against usurpation and absorption (Vereinnahmung), also against oneself´s possible claims of usurpation, on the other hand there may be a loss of standards, liability, resposibility and true commitment. So much for the philosophy of/about the hipster.

Think of, now, how especially Carl Schmitt would react and what he would do if confronted with someone like the hipster! – I had to smile into myself when I read Ikrath´s book, and the rumination that the hipster is the end of all politics: Indeed, Schmitt with his pronouced (and, I guess, somehow narcissistic and edgy) friend-foe dichotomy and his admiration for hard and sharp decisions! How would he try to grasp the hipster when the hipster is evaporating, or just innocently smiling to him, like a different life form, and then innocently escape like a colourful and innocent butterfly from Schmitt´s angry and nervous grasp, with his latent indecisiveness and not actually knowing pronounced friend and foe demarcations as he embraces everything that is cool at the moment and just opposes anything that is uncool, without regard to the substance so that things are all the time in flux? Schmitt was vocal against „the Romantic“ i.e. a kind of aetheste who is fond of the colourful multifacetedness of the world and his own genius subjectivity that embraces this colourful multifacetedness without, however, engaging into the realm of authentic decisions (i.e. the realm of politics) – there is some allusion to the hipster in there. While such an existence may be pleasant for itself and intense, the political life is actually more intense since it is about profound decisions. In general, the self-empowerment of man is to Schmitt the original sin, and through his eyes the constructivistic hipster with his genius subjectivity may be a false replacement of the true God (again, without however possibly the hipster ever coming up with such an idea and therefore being very confused about Schmitt). Schmitt and Strauss are „metaphysicists“ par excellence and directly opposed to the ironic (hipster). Both were opposed to modernity and the state of bourgeois „security“, i.e. that life has become merely a quest for a pleasant, consumerist life. Both thought that would deprive man of his true inner essence, and of his nobility. A central idea/sentiment of Schmitt was that there should be space for the „anspruchsvolle moralische Entscheidung“ (sophisticated/challenging ethical decision) in which the individual reveals his competence and nobility. Unfortunately, in the case of Schmitt his „anspruchsvolle ethische Entscheidung“ was joining the NSDAP, and his quest for a „Jargon der Eigentlichkeit“ made him, and others like Heidegger or Marinetti, prone to suspect that „authenticity“ and profoundness in Nazism/fascism because they thought that within modernist „confusion“ it is a „real“ thing. Strauss will not be likely to view the hipster as an elitist „gentleman“ who should govern, I guess he would be unhappy about the hipster, yet probably more interesting and open-minded in what he would have to say about the hipster. If I am correct, Schmitt admitted that modern democracy and the Weimar Republic in fact weren´t so bad after all. And, under neoliberalism, the hipster does not actually live in a state of „security“.

A Guide to Fucking Hipster Girls

A while ago I started to write my fourth work of literature, „Die Reise nach Süden“ (Journey to the South) which is about a dream-like scenario in which I, the genius writer, am commissioned by transcendent authorities to go to Ebelsberg/exurbia of the town in the south to teach the people there „the word“, some kind of ominous lesson (I have not yet figured out, and I also stopped writing on it soon thereafter since time and the book market isn´t ripe for a work like the Journey anyway – and me neither (since the message probably will be my final conclusion about life at all which I have not reached so far)). In this place, people live in three blocks of flats, there is an eternal day; it is, allegedly, the end of culture and the triumph of pleasant civilisation, where nothing meaningful about man can be said and no meaningful culture and art is possible anymore. An allusion that may be to Nietzsche´s „last man“ (and Schmitt, Strauss and others say respectively on that behalf), a type of man whose goal is to live a pleasant life, in a levelled, homogenous society, and who is culturally impotent since he does not want to transcend himself anymore and to bring sacrifices to his art; a human being that has lost his connex to a greater cause, or to a great other (be it God, the nation, communism or transcendant art), solely revolving around himself and harmless self-actualisation devoid of true substance, as the triumph of Western enlightenment (people from more collectivist societies may critisise it from a collectivist sentiment). You have „Ich-Verpanzerung“, that Schmitt depsises (and human subjectivity, for itself, if it does not relate to something bigger than itself, is actually in a number of cases quite feeble). – Nietzsche however said that the last man will be a kind of negative of the overman, and in the realm of the last man there will be the incipit Zarathustra. Let us assume that the overman will be a genius subjectivity that embraces the colourful multifacetedness of the world (the „Romantic“, as described by Schmitt) and will be above politics, yet also able of „anspruchsvolle moralische Entscheidung“ as he embodies the quasi-divine law, as he naturally sticks to what is right and opposes what is wrong, socratically, as he does not have a particular ideology and is an ironic as well as a metaphysicist all alike (since the relative and the absolute mirror each other in a multifaceted and occasionally contradictory realm of being and absolute moral asks for some moral relativism, etc.) (Kierkegaard, an overman, was both a staunch metaphysicist as well as a distinct ironic, which confused people so much that they slightly began to understand him only thirty years after his death). Concerning real dichotomies and the question of friend and foe he will acknowledge that in the human realm and as a motive and movens in history you have both (as probably metaphysical categories, as Schmitt said), but he will, as the wise man, and as the Weltgeist (= as the virtual fulfillment of history) never speak himself out of hostility (as Kojève wrote in letter to Schmitt (without however going as far as to reflect that question on the overman). He will stabilise himself in his own complexity and, as he embraces all otherness, he will be his own Great Other within himself.

Neither the hipster nor the metaphysicist nor the ironic nor the overman are completely there in reality, they are some kind of abstractions and ideal types with which we can philosophise about relationships between things and write casual-serious notes like this one.

Apology of Socrates and Crito

Like Kafka, Wittgenstein, Emily Dickinson, Bodhidharma or Heinrich von Kleist, Socrates was an overman. The overman is someone who is affected by the totality of human/existential problems – the extreme quasi-nervous affectedness and being agitated by the totality of human/existential problems is quasi the essence of the overman – and handles them at the highest level of analysis and integration (commonly referred to as the meta level). Being the conscious reflection of the totality of sets of human/existential affairs, he is the hyperset. Think of some kind of smoke emerging from the flat surface of the populated earth, in apparent serenity, and diffusing into the air, as a cloud of smoke, then gradually diffusing into ever more transparency, and you have the overman (for instance, as a mental image that may come to mind). No one will be more located and more dislocated on earth than the overman! No one will find human/existential affairs more silly and absurd and not be affected by them, and no one will clinge to them with greater sincerity and gravity and be more affected by them. No one (unfortunately) will escape the grasp/embrace of institutions and institutional logic more, but also recognise the depth and profoundness of institutions and of the law like no one else does than the overman (with Melville for instance being the only honest and uncorrupted person in his office in which he had to work after his career as a writer came to an end due to human ineptitude).  At some point there will also be some coolness towards the science, philosophical, escatological stuff, as at the overman level there is not so much anymore at stake and as he has become medium and instrument of sticking to escatological etc stuff, and that is enough – science and philosophy and the growth of knowledge will go on, fractal-like, the individual overman cannot foresee what will be 3000 years in the future, at any rate he will not be surprised by it and that is what matters. He lives both in the Weltzeit and in the Heilszeit – respectively in what I called a while ago the Continuum (of the spiritual essences of the great ideas of man). As he clinges to truth, he becomes depersonalised and objectified. As he finds out, establishes and holds truth, he becomes transpersonalised and extremely idiosyncratic in his subjectivity. The nebulousness of ego allows a much higher level of psychological integration. Due to his fluidity, the overman might clash with the man´s (intractable) world.

Socrates was put on trial at the age of seventy for „corrupting the young“ and „not believing in the gods in whom the city believes, but in other daimonia that are novel“. To understand this, specifically, one has to know that – as one of the odds that usually characterise societies and that may become contradictory in critical situations – Athens at that time was a very rational and progressive, democratic society – but also very traditional when it came to clinging to its own religion and mythology; in that respect Athens was backward to more peripheral regions of Greece or Asia Minor (which probably triggered feelings of inferiority within a superiority complex) and Socrates was not the first person to be put on trial for religious reasons, there had been examples before. Five years before Socrates´ trial, Athens had suffered defeat in the Peloponnesian War which triggered insecurity among the population, conservatism and hostility towards experiments and a challenging, adventurous spirit like that personified by Socrates. The main prosecutor, Anytos, obviously was free from mean-spirited motives, but actually believed Socrates to be a danger to religion and social cohesion. More generally, Socrates explains in his apology how his quest for truth, sincerity and human betterment had to a significant degree always been met with hostility and envy by those whose feebleness he exposed and, as such, cannot be turned into anything better („to his grief and to his heartache“ he found out that he made himself unpopular by the learned and educated as he exposed their lack of substance, and, furthermore, that the common people – whom the intellectual outsider may come to regard as more pure and authentic than the pretentious intellectuals – in reality are not any better – and neither are the artists). Socrates´ tragedy was that in his quest for grace of man he put disgrace over many people. Someone like Socrates stands in a certain opposition to society, that may become lethal. – After Socrates was sentenced to death his friend Crito tried to persuade him to flee. Socrates, however, refused. The main argument was that in doing so he would cease to be a law-abiding citizen, and even if the law may be(come) problematic or conflictual, the law is older than the individual, an order ancestral and higher to the individual that should not be refuted for egoic motives (other aspects were that Socrates would lose his dignity if, as a 70 year old philosopher, he was so obsessed with living a couple of years more, in a foreign polis, where he likely would not be taken serious and also had spilled his reputation among the people of Athens further; as at the trial he did not try to defend himself by appeasing the others but only by holding on to the truth he would now have to bear the consequences) – on the whole, Socrates` legacy as a philosopher and wise man and as an icon would not have been as powerful and uncorrupted if he had followed Crito´s advise, indeed. Socrates died as he lived, hence his spirt became immortal.

Philosophy does not mean that someone possesses all wisdom, it means love for wisdom, and with his unpersonal clinging to truth itself, Socrates is the archetype of philosopher. Finding out and holding on to truth and knowledge and being virtuous can be seen as ends in themselves and to make up for a happy (probably socially excluded, but also self-contained) life. It is an eudaemonia. Philosophy, as a quest for virtue and truth, finally is a matter of the individual, and can finally only be reached by exceptional individuals, for a personal, subjective goal as well as for a general, objective one. Philosophy is transindividual, transsocial, and transpolitical. Philosophy can make guidance for the human/political realm but, to a certain degree, is likely to be at odds with the demands of the political sphere – pure philosophy cannot be executed in matters of politics and neither can philosophy purely be attributed to the human/political/social realm without losing its edge and sincerity (as Socrates said in his apology, he could have not remained a virtuous man if he had become a politician). These are, to some degree, heterogenous realms. In the human realm, and in political entities, you have a certain primacy of people holding to faith and to opinions, to ideologies and to emotions (not only necessarily among the populace but also among those who govern), and the philosopher, with his quest for unideological truth, is a kind of intruder who may not be properly understood and, moreover, met with jealousy, envy and hostility, as he does not flatter people´s egos. The fluidity of the philosopher meets an intractable world – and probably not without reason, since it may be the philosopher who, with his colourful mind, is detached from (a drab) reality.

Politics is about regulating and managing the affairs of people that live together in a community. It means balancing the interests of individuals and groups to which they belong. The interest of people and groups usually revolves around enabling a good life for themselves, accomodating the world to their respective worldview and maximising their profit (Will to Power, as Nietzsche remarks). In doing so, individuals and groups may be at odds with each other, how they are balanced then is a matter of their respective power (where the power attributed to them can a personal one, or attributed to them due to anonymous, unpersonal matters of fact, for instance changes in technology that produce „winners“ and „losers“). A good political system is where a maximum number of people benefit, where there are just rewards and power/interest balancing is uncorrupted and impersonal. A good political system seeks to reproduce itself at a higher level of quality (and also taking the interests of foreign communities in account). Such a community will believe in itself and act in a disciplined way and the common good will be achieved. A political system is, at first, about accomodating people´s material interests – but also emotional and ideogical aspects are important and somehow „transpolitical“ or metapolitical. They are about how a community understands itself and how social cohesion can be established. A community is based on a feeling of togetherness (Wir-Gefühl), and where such a feeling of togetherness erodes it is likely to become a political problem and to undermine trust in the political system or the whole trust a society is based on (note that such an erosion of Wir-Gefühl need not be a direct problem for the individual or a social problem, as for instance the Islam of immigrants need not affect anyone in Europe but themselves, but will be articulated as a political problem of identity politics). The ancestral is a primary source of identity. Nationalism, religion, ideas like „liberté, egalité, fraternité“, communism, being a member of Nato or a neutral state, etc. are such ideological/mental brackets, whose sources need not necessarily be a simple emotion, but heavily involve emotions, amalgamate emotions, interest and rationalisation and reduce complexity. They are a substitute for the philosopher´s usual awareness of feeling integrated into a greater whole of a (transcendent) order, and they are not necessarily an extension of a person´s ego, but of the persons´s heart and mind. Therefore, such mentalities are important to people and important when it comes to political discourse (and, as rulers know (?), in the name of „religion“, „the nation“ and the like it is relatively easy to make people bring sacrifices or even sacrifice their own lives, whereas altruism or reason per se are not). Political discourse is relevant as, in a maybe-contrast to the wise man who prefers inner mono/dialogue, people like to talk, usually all day long. It is vital for them to talk and chat and make themselves feel know-all. Eventually, such attachments to mentalities/ideologies/cultures, designed to embed the individual in a greater, meaningful whole, are, to some degree, also an alienation of the individual or a diversion from his own emptiness, as the understanding of people of the ideologies they clinge to or may even defend with tooth and nail usually is feeble and shallow and phraseological: Socrates, who clinged to nothing but the truth, even at the cost of his own life, exposed that – incipit tragoedia. The philosopher, however, has the power to give new meaning to the human realm or the specific requirements of his age and plays therefore a vital role in the history of mankind, be it an asynchronous one.

All people are equal, and no one ever is (and thus Thus Spake Zarathustra a „Book for All and None“). Lacan once said in an interview the „average Joe“ would not exist to him, respectively is not something he could observe in reality – as all people that consult him as a therapist and doctor do so because of very specific and individual problems that are their own. The overman´s problems are also problems for all and none. Basically, the overman is the individual in its own idiosyncracy and trying to make sense out of it. In so far, as one never is a complete conformist, free from alienation, sorrow or things that personally matter to oneself, somehow always is a bit detached from society and is born and dies alone, and in between tries to make sense out of his own, there´s an overman quality in everyone. Eventually, the overman is the perfect individual and full realisation of human potential, hence transhuman, and very eccentrically located in society. – There may be the question about how politics among a population of overmen-geniuses would be. Contrary to what one might think, geniuses often are not particularly fond of each other if they inhabitate the same space/time. Maybe for low reasons (jealousy and the like) or disagreement, but also because they think that they have to protect their own work and their own message from the message of the fellow genius, as an act of more or less legitimate self-defense. The overman however will not be very apt to have a specific message to transmit to mankind at all, since he´s too comprehensive and transgressive. The overman will like to put intellectual things/messages at disposal. Let us say the defining characteristic of the genius is originality – i.e. there´s some self-referentiality in it which might clash with other self-referentialities. The characteristics of the overman are openness, humility and humour, i.e. characteristics that evade everything. Whether there can be war and hostility between overmen cannot be said, since they are too infrequent and hardly ever have the possibility to meet personally in their lifetime. They are alive and well in the Continuum (in the Q-Continuum of the Star Trek series btw, a habitat for some kind of overmen, there has been a civil war once nevertheless upon a question that is actually undecidable based on logics but can only be decided via personal preferences (the question whether it would make sense for the nearly divine Q to make contact with other species at all, or not) – consider that individuality seperates us from each other, hence is potentially conflitctual, and also that the persistent and hard problems usually are dilemmas, i.e. they cannot be solved but only managed, or, as Kissinger says, politics is a choice between two evils, so that there is actually not so much hope that between overmen such things would be completely absent). Great thinkers, as is usually observed, carry contradictions – and it may be the privilege of a great thinker to carry contraditions – respectively the internal consistency of their stuff is usually achieved by excluding stuff that happens in reality nevetheless (external consistency) – the overman will not carry contradictions, due to omniscience, fluid psychology and clinging to unpersonal truth (hence Socrates did not carry contradictions). As he encircles the earth however, the overman might be not very communicative and (in contrast to the example of Socrates) hate long conversations. So that a community of overmen might rather resemble Mycroft´s Diogenes Club in the Sherlock Holmes series. – Nietzsche however was right to criticise morals, the law, religion, institutions etc., not least if they may produce shit like the Socrates trial, and he was right that they require a truly fundamental critique: In his deep affection for everything that is sincere and binding and profound (in his natural, well, catholicism) the genius/overman habitually clinges to religion/the law/transcendent stuff, and may produce stuff that is alienating for him and for others. It is interesting what would have become of Nietzsche if he had not died so early. Before that, his mind and spirit was permanently evolving like hardly any other. (In Schopenhauer as Educator, a key writing to understand Nietzsche, he rumintated that in his time and age, Socrates would have not become 70 years old btw.)

 

 

Theaterstück

THEATERSTÜCK 

Für 2 Schauspieler und 1 Publikum

Von Philip Hautmann

 

Aufblende. A sitzt an einem Tisch und blickt ins Publikum. Es vergehen einige Minuten. Plötzlich kommt B von hinten links hereingestürmt, auf A zu. Er bleibt in ca. zwei Metern Entfernung von A stehen. A und B sehen sich an. Daraufhin stürmt B wieder zurück, hält kurz vor dem Bühnenausgang spontan inne, kehrt wieder um und stürmt wieder auf A zu und bleibt wiederum in ca. 2 Metern Entfernung von A stehen, der sich B wiederum zuwendet. A und B sehen sich an.

    Das Publikum lacht.

B stürmt wiederum plötzlich von A weg, hält vor dem Bühnenausgang spontan inne, kehrt wieder um und stürmt auf A zu, wie vorher. A und B sehen einander an.

     Das Publikum lacht.

B stürmt wiederum plötzlich von A weg, hält vor dem Bühnenausgang spontan inne, kehrt wieder um und stürmt auf A zu, wie vorher. A und B sehen einander an.

     Das Publikum lacht.

A (etwas krawutisch): Ja, was ist denn nun eigentlich?

Das Publikum zerkugelt sich. Einige Leute im Publikum lachen laut und kichern anschließend intensiv eine Weile fort.

B setzt sich nach einer Pause neben A an den Tisch. Beide blicken nun etwas indigniert ins Publikum.

     Das Publikum schüttelt sich vor Lachen.

A und B wenden ihre Köpfe einander zu und blicken sich gegenseitig etwas indigniert an.

      Das Publikum wiehert vor Lachen.

A und B wenden sich wieder voneinander ab und blicken wieder etwas indigniert ins Publikum.

      Das Publikum brüllt vor Lachen. Als das Lachen etwas abschwillt

A und B fallen plötzlich, aber synchron nach außen weg von ihren Stühlen auf den Boden.

     Woraufhin das Lachen im Publikum wieder stark anschwillt.

A und B winden sich auf dem Boden, stoßen unverständliche, kindliche Geräusche aus. Schließlich kriechen sie aufeinander zu und langsam übereinander hinweg. Sie befühlen und betasten einander dabei in einer Mischung aus Zärtlichkeit und Aggressivität, dem ambivalenten Charakter der Sexualität und der menschlichen Zuneigung Ausdruck verleihend. Schließlich richtet sich B auf und setzt sich an den Tisch, während A etwas verzückt am Boden liegen bleibt.

 A (in möglichst unpassendem, affektiertem Ausdruck):

„Welcher Lebendige,

Sinnbegabte,

Liebt nicht von allen

Wundererscheinungen

Des verbreiteten Raums um ihn

Das allerfreuliche Licht –

Mit seinen Strahlen und Wogen

Seinen Farben

Seiner milden Allgegenwart

Im Tage.

Wie des Lebens

Innerste Seele

Atmet es die Riesenwelt

Der rastlosen Gestirne

Die in einem blauen Meer schwimmen,

Atmet es der funkelnde Stein,

Die ruhige Pflanze

Und der Tiere

Vielgestaltete,

Immerbewegte Kraft –

Atmen es vielfarbige

Wolken und Lüfte

Und vor allen

Die herrlichen Fremdlinge

Mit den sinnvollen Augen

Dem schwebenden Gange

Und dem tönenden Munde.

Wie ein König

Der irdischen Natur

Ruft es jede Kraft

Zu zahllosen Verwandlungen

Und seine Gegenwart allein

Offenbart die Wunderherrlichkeit

Des irdischen Reichs.

Abwärts wend ich mich

Zu der heiligen, unaussprechlichen

Geheimnisvollen Nacht –

Fernab liegt die Welt,

Wie versenkt in eine tiefe Gruft

Wie wüst und einsam

Ihre Stelle!

Tiefe Wehmut

Weht in den Saiten der Brust

Fernen der Erinnerung

Wünsche der Jugend

Der Kindheit Träume

Des ganzen, langen Lebens,

Kurze Freuden

Und vergebliche Hoffnungen

Kommen in grauen Kleidern

Wie Abendnebel

Nach der Sonne,

Untergang“

B:    Sagen sie das meinem Arsch!

       Das Publikum tobt vor Lachen.

Abblende

(2009)

Die Firma – Kommissarin Galehr schlägt zu (Kriminalromanskizze)

Kommissarin Galehr fährt zum Tatort, der Firma, wo ein spektakuläres Verbrechen stattgefunden hat: Die rumänische Diebesbande hat in der Firma alles gestohlen! Kommissarin Galehr ist zuversichtlich, die Gaunerbande endlich auszuheben und freut sich, am Tatort neue Männer kennenzulernen, da sie sich hinter ihrer schroffen und für ihre Umwelt oft rätselhaften Fassade nichts sehnlicher wünscht als einen Mann. Bald stellt sich heraus: In der Firma gibt es nur Idioten, und die Verhöre gestalten sich schwieriger als Kommissarin Galehr es erwartet hatte. Da ist die despotische, übellaunige Chefsekretärin Olga, die von einem Augenblick zum anderen freilich zu einem freundlichen und redseligen Wesen wird, wenn man ihr Gelegenheit gibt, über ihr Privatleben oder ihren letzten Urlaub zu plaudern. Die befremdliche Natalie, die für jeden statt einem normalen Gruß nur ein abschätziges kurzes Lachen bereit hat und selten antwortet wenn sie was gefragt wird, freilich aber ganz freundlich wird, wenn es darum geht, dass man ihr ihr selbstgebackenes Brot abkauft. Der halbbeschäftigte alternde Philosoph und Schriftsteller ohne Namen, der stets zwanghaft und reflektierend von seiner „Mittelmäßigkeit“ redet und darüber brütet und dessen Verhalten und Innenleben so verworren ist, dass man es kaum für möglich halten würde. Der dicke und gutmütige Lasse Benissen, der sich bei den harmlosesten Gelegenheiten und oft gänzlich unerwartet in die Ecke gedrängt fühlt, und dann nervös – aggressiv – unbeholfen sofort damit droht, die Polizei zu holen, die Anwälte, die Gerichte einzuschalten, das Innenministerium u. dergl., und der nicht zur Ruhe kommt bevor er nicht lange, penible Eingaben bei der Firma gemacht hat. Der rätselhafte, undurchsichtige, stets nur nachts, oftmals aber auch gar nicht arbeitende EDV – Techniker John, der zwar sehr beflissen ist, Kommissarin Galehr mit Informationen und Einschätzungen zu füttern, dessen Aussagen jedoch fast immer widersprüchlich sind oder sich überhaupt gegenseitig ausschließen, sofern sie nicht mit der Realität gleich gar nichts zu tun haben. Watscheslav, der Firmenkasperl und Scherzbold, der alle aufheitert, aber auf dem Höhepunkt seiner Witzvorträge immer wieder plötzlich inne hält und dann zu weinen anfängt aus Schuldgefühl, „so fröhlich zu sein, während sein armes Polen gedemütigt in Ketten liegt.“ Yussuf, Atef und Göcksel, die sich die ganze Zeit über ihre eigene geistige und sprachliche Primitivität und ihren mangelnden Willen, sich in die heimische Kultur zu integrieren, selbstironisch lustig machen, oder aber ihren homosexuellen Kollegen, den verschüchterten Heinerle, drangsalieren, dem dann niemand in der Firma hilft. Die Hausfrauen und Mütter jenseits der Fünfzig, die überall gleich sind. Das geschwätzige, tuschelnde und ständig kichernde Eiserne Dreieck, das boshaft alle Leute ausrichtet, vor allen Dingen schwache, zu dem sich Kommissarin Galehr freilich unweigerlich hinzugezogen fühlt. Und über all dem thront als Chef der weltfremde Althippie Werner. Kommissarin Galehr findet zwar heraus, dass 98 Prozent der Angehörigen der Firma glauben, dass die Juden an der Weltwirtschaftskrise „zumindest mitschuldig“ sind oder dass ein Viertel nicht weiß, wer den letzten Weltkrieg gewonnen hat, und stößt überhaupt auf eine schier unglaubliche Ahnungslosigkeit und Begriffsstutzigkeit der Leute gegenüber Angelegenheiten, die nicht unmittelbar den kleinsten, persönlichsten Lebensumkreis betreffen, im Hinblick auf die Täter tappt sie jedoch mehr und mehr im Dunkeln, und scheint wichtige Spuren zu übersehen, während sie die Falschen (unter anderem die von dem EDV – Techniker John absichtslos ins Blickfeld gerückten) konsequent verfolgt – und dann dieser Sexismus bei der Polizei! Auch ihre ansonsten bestens bewährte Intuition scheint Kommissarin Galehr im Stich zu lassen: Die Sterne, die sie jeden Morgen nach ihrer eigenen Methode berechnet, scheinen zu lügen, und ihre Träume scheinen so sinnlos, dass sie auch mit Hilfe von ihrem bewährtem „Handbuch der Traumdeutung“ nicht schlau daraus werden kann. Gleichzeitig hat es Kommissarin Galehr in ihrem Privatleben nicht einfach, wo sie an einer schrecklichen Einsamkeit und sexuellen Frustration leidet, da sie ja auch schließlich jeden Mann, dem sie begegnet, reflexmäßig als Idioten abqualifiziert. Kommissarin Galehr weiß natürlich, dass das allein eine Rationalisierung der Ergebnisse ist, die ihre sehr niedrige soziale und emotionale Intelligenz mit sich bringen. Doch trotzdem sie den Zusammenhang erkennt, kann Kommissarin Galehr da gar nichts dagegen machen. Da bringt die italienische Firmenputzfachkraft Silvio mit seinem hochgradig primitiven, aber hochgradig wirksamen Charme Kommissarin Galehr jedoch ganz, und gegen ihren Willen, aus der Fassung! Ist sie eine Idiotin, wenn sie auf den hochgradig primitiven, aber hochgradig wirksamen Charme von Silvio reinfällt? Oder ist sie eine Idiotin, wenn sie auf den hochgradig primitiven, aber hochgradig wirksamen Charme von Silvio nicht reinfällt? Fragen ihres Herzens, über die die unentschlossene Kommissarin Galehr den eigentlichen Fall immer mehr aus den Augen zu verlieren droht, und von der rumänischen Diebesbande, die alles gestohlen hat, verliert sich Spur um Spur. Doch war es denn wirklich die rumänische Diebesbande, die alles gestohlen hat?

(2009)

Briefwechsel Silvio – Kommissarin Galehr

Commissare mia!

Du die interessante Frau!! Ich du liebe du ich mir! Du die himmel auf boden das goldkaeferchen. Du das feuerzeug zu meine Herz!! Du das reine gutte Maedchen mit die gutte Sele! Du – die Zuckerpupp! Ich du liebe das dich auch! Ich bin dem mal mit dem man nicht nur niocht sein und verkehr sei geworde bleibt! Ich dir fahre Paradies! D unf ich,

dir Silvio

 

Lieber Silvio,

offenbar hast du einige Dinge fälschlich interpretiert. Der Entscheidung, mich mit dir zu treffen, lagen rein berufliche Motive zugrunde, und obwohl dabei auch Privates zur Sprache kam, sehe ich gar nicht ein, wieso von dir etwas anderes angenommen werden sollte, wenngleich es mich natürlich konveniert, dass du so nette Worte zu sagen versuchst.

Das bedeutet aber nicht, dass es angeht, mir eine solche Depesche zu schicken! Was soll denn der Postbote denken, wenn er eine solche Depesche zu lesen bekommt? Außerdem habe ich den Verdacht, dass du diese Depesche auf Firmenkosten verschickt hast, was doch ganz und gar nicht zu rechtfertigen ist. Hast du nun also diese Depesche auf Firmenkosten verschickt? Wenn ja, erwarte ich mir, dass du mir ehrlich gestehst, ob der Versand der Depesche auf Firmenkosten geschehen ist, oder ob du ihn ordnungsgemäß von deinem eigenen Geld bezahlt hast, so wie es ganz selbstverständlich sein sollte, hörst du?

Bessere dich, lieber Silvio, dann bin ich möglicherweise bereit, dir zu verzeihen.

Kommissarin Jane Galehr

 

Commissare!

Meine Bezeichnung – Silvio! Du die wunderschoene blum im Garten der nAtur! Ich liebe dir! Wenn einer zu dir bos ich den hau in die goschn mit händ undf ärm! Du mein Naturwesen! Du – Springbrunnen!! Mein Herz fure sich, es springe springe über die ganze plaza und zruck! Wenn du mich nicht wolle meine ganze lebe tot nur noch einzwei woche zu lebe! Pasta Asciutta Pizza Maserati Fiat! Du mit mir fahre ich dir zeige meine Alfa Romeo 260 PS schnell! Du dann habe was Gscheids unterm Arsch!

Ich kusse deine fuss!!

Du Silvio

 

Silvio!

Bereits zum zweiten Mal hast du mit eine Depesche auf Firmenkosten geschickt, und das, obwohl du mir versprochen hast, das nie mehr wieder zu tun! Ich frage mich wirklich ernstlich, was dich davon halten soll, mehr aber noch, was DU dir denkst, dass ich von dir halten soll, wenn du so offen deinen Beteuerungen mir gegenüber zuwider handelst und dein Wort brichst. Ich finde, du solltest dich schämen, und das finde nicht nur ich! Dein Verhalten ist ganz und gar ungeziemend, und so erteile ich dir hiermit

EINE ERNSTE RÜGE

Hörst du? Du scheinst dir gar keine Begriffe zu machen, wie sehr du mich inkommodierst. Dass du so feurig bist und der Gedanke an mich deine Sinne verwirrt, mag EINMAL entschuldigend und mildernd in Anschlag gebracht werden können, nicht aber ein zweites Mal, und das nach all den deutlichen Hinweisen meinerseits.

Ich erwarte mir nun also, dass du, lieber Silvio, der Firma nicht nur das Geld heimlich zurück zahlst – so wie wir es ausgemacht haben, damit du dein schönes Gesicht wahren kannst – sondern dich dieses Mal auch offen bei der Firma entschuldigst! Ob du das bis morgen gemacht haben wirst, werde ich mich bei Werner erkundigen. Außerdem weiß ich doch, dass du Silvio heißt! Warum eröffnest du deinen Brief, indem du dich namentlich bei mir vorstellst?

Auch darauf erwarte ich mir eine Antwort!

Kommissarin Galehr