Rando-Seminar #1: Deleuze, Demons, Eschatology, Asceticism



cloud connected to the server boom there we go all right cool what are we calling this thing I have no idea mm-hmm right now it's just the Rando seminar number one nice because I don't have anything better but I'm looking for that text that I sent you a couple days ago anyways I just like was thinking a lot so I read um like two pages of Deleuze the other day when with Rachel Smith we're working through the memories of a natural scientist and memories of a natural scientist and then memories of a sorcerer one two and three and then memories of a spinet cyst or something like a feelin yeah and then a spin noticed so but yeah I uh I'm just seeing if I can find that here yeah yeah and I found that I found the texts that I sent you it says I have so much to say with regard to Deleuze and Guattari but also the anti Futura stuff resign right resigning the fantasy of the political kingdom of God on earth having a radically unrealized eschatology and doing the individual and communal aesthetic work that tries to extricate us from the from the demonic and dispose us to connection with the capital s source however you want to think about that mm-hmm in the president like as in the kingdom of God is within you right right and live compassionately in the present the source of political projects that try to instantiate the good my only fear is that God is weaker than demons right so like I'm trying to so as we're going on with this with this I guess first little series that we're doing which is not really a series but it's kind of becoming one on on sort of power and temporality and thinking about and then my like initial engagements with Deleuze and thinking about sort of the demonic as like a flow or stream of a certain kind of effect that sort of maybe causes or gives rise to a certain kind of disposition or kinds right different configurations you know and thinking about ascesis as like sort of a technology of like extra cating oneself from flows of affect anyway yeah I don't know there's just a ton there and I don't know anything about deluso like I need to bounce them off it bounce the ideas off of you but right now yeah financially interesting Anna and I want to go I want to dive in and really look at yeah trick trace like the aesthetic through Deleuze more carefully it's definitely in Foucault too which is really interesting but I think the way you put it in terms of flows would definitely be the way to go there um so I've been yeah I've been reading a lot of secondary lit recently to daniel smith in talking about doulas his political philosophy says that there's like three major you know three really essential concepts for this are for his political posture flow code and stock and so all flows are coated in some way um sort of like credit and debt like money is is it's a certain flow that's coded it so it needs to be coded in order to be registered as a stock as like what you have right um and then an ending expenses like the the bank me the extreme danger for a civil society is is a code or is is a flow that is uncoated and so he gives the example of a like financial derivatives in the 2008 crisis we're a flow that was like either uncoated or improperly code and so it escapes like in a rupture and I'm thinking you could probably sink through the same type of relation in terms of like effective flows and the individual subjects right like an app like an like an effective flow that remains uncoated or something like this so is the code is the code essentially being able to sort of name in place and manage exactly energy or like exactly binding energy in a name yeah exactly yeah that's really important that's good hey I got a quick question for you this is a sidebar I'm still learning how to use this platform do you have a option on your side to hit record no okay because right now it's going to as far I'm gonna pause the recording real quick so then the so then the the sort of flow is this like pre pre-linguistic pre discursive effective influence yeah code would be sort of like the name ability naming of this pretty-pretty cognitive thing and then the stock I guess is the way or the system in which these this stock the stock is like how much you possess of it oh okay so this is where this is where stuff gets tricky though and this is where I get really not suspicious but just like kind of with Freud for example when he starts quantifying yeah FX are quantifying like I mean we can think of we can think of more or less intense kind of things but like it's just like how do you come up with a calculus for that for like right you know what I write right ya know and in even if they even if they do speak about it quantitatively I think I think that I think that we could rest comfortable with just just speaking about it in terms of like more or less in ten states but there wouldn't yeah I think I mean it I would think it impossible to actually be able to come up with a you know an actual system of of quantification for these things but it is it is interesting in relation to yeah so so so asceticism might be right like I like the word extrication it could make but it could also be yeah like a naming and then and management of these things too there's a lot of talk yeah I'd be interested to think about like house like stoicism is in is that the same thing as these gonna Gotti like I don't know well it seems to me there's two ways there's two ways we can go one is one is in naming but so for example I'll try to use a concrete example I find myself in loops of sort of mental self torture or something like that and and I'm able to name the root of this which is hatred or delusion something like that right so in this names sort of the the energies that I'm sort of like beholden to in this thought pattern that I'm not in control of for example does that make sense mm-hmm okay so one so so we bind that force through naming which really like this is a very biblical way of thinking about exorcism right binding binding the the strong man that's super interesting so there is sir there is a binding in the name right in the naming of that effect that flow that demonic force is we want to talk about it that way but there's also a way in which once it is bound or or you develop certain practices you are actually trying to remove yourself from the influence of that flow right you see that I mean so so it seems like it seems like for example some energies like we can't extricate ourselves from and we should it like for example like a life Drive like you can't nor should you like try to develop technologies that that take you out of that stream but we can't name it but something like something like delusion or greed or lust right like these are things that for example you can name with the express purpose of like disposing yourself such that it right yes right impact on you and yeah and that's interesting going so you use the term influence which is different from extricate yourself from like so it's doing it then the difference doing like extreme yourself from the flow versus the influence from the flow right and so it sort of naming it might be and like oh actually a way of like he just said mitigating the the intensity of the influence that it has I mean like so if you're able to like and this is like I I've been thinking and I've been practicing this actually with myself too because they'll be like times were you you register it in the body first like oh I'm feeling anxious right now but don't necessarily know why so you ask like okay what happened like what literally just seconds ago happen like what's the the agent of cause of this and then you and then you name it and the effective influence on you actually decreases in the very act of naming oh yes this is what happened mmhmm yeah that's good I I do have a question you might know the answer this might just be like a very vague thing so we register effect in the body before they sort of horizon language right but there is a cause there is an external cause as we were mentioning there's an external cause so for example I'm in really heavy traffic and my breathing starts to get really shallow and constricted and I start to like become upset even though I haven't put this in my brain yet right where is effect where is in at is it in is it in my body is it in the traffic you see that I mean is it in the relation between the body and the traffic right where is this where does this flow take like where do you locate like the power you see what I mean that's super interesting question yeah I like I like I like I like the in-between I mean see I do like thinking about this as a flow that that circulates um so it would be it'd almost be like asking where is the Colorado River it's it's in many places at once and the very particles that are in one place are moving toward another and then it's having an impact on you know the bank and the infrastructure and the people who use it for drinking water so so so all this to say is it's at once intensely localizable down to the very register of the effect on the body and at the same time completely delocalized in a continuous flow among bodies roads cars in the in the atmosphere that makes up that that situation so yeah you know that makes total sense to me I guess I guess the question then comes comes to be like how do you distinguish currents from one another right so for well how do you distinguish this stress and anxiety I don't know I don't those are more emotions than they are effects I guess I don't know how you would name it I'm very new to this Eric so how do you distinguish for example that from sort of the serene landscape that is literally just you know if you looked forty-five degrees upward you would say like you know beautiful mountain whatever like it's all available to you there how do you distinguish what is what you're tapping into and if you can extricate yourself from one or the other or if you can sort of shift focus what is that extra subjective thing mmm or activity that you are that actually allows certain flows to come in to focus and to exert influence like literally in flow right humming it flowing into you right and allows you to build some semi permeable sort of membrane against other there you see what I mean like how does it so it so essentially what I'm pointing to is how do like how do you account for the like freedom of subjectivity terrain to direct attention and allow in certain yeah influences allow certain things to flow in right or is there an in right we are kind of like even composed of these right exactly yes so that's the first thing I think is okay so yeah if we're being so I think I think do those I guess probably the best reference here just because it's this interesting combination of Freud and you need people like Berg stone and Hugh mr. nosy even so right so the minds or the unconscious or whatever you want to call it is precisely composed of multiplicity of external influences that that become internalized she then gesture to Nietzsche right like meet Nietzsche will say that he uses the example of morality but we don't think we need to go there but that like a moral idea or whatever is whatever of those factors wins out among the multiplicity of drives and desires no actually you pointing gesturing to Freud here is very helpful actually thinking about the creation of the external and the internal as right derivative of just flow floated as drive right when we when we sort of register that as an internal subjective kind of right yes then the question of how to if we want to call it like effect management or something that right like how to be able to shift or aid in the ship like the triumph of one of those aspects toward another one that's a really interesting question and what is the the kind of meta component that's even able to ask that question is also really interesting so there has to right so there would have to be some degree and it can be minor right because like we're not saying clearly what we're not saying is that you just have you no control over how you feel all the time at precisely the opposite but there would have to be some degree of agency or creativity that allows one to steer ever-so-slightly like oh like a ship steers right yeah but yeah the dispositional focus or the the directionality of these things yeah yeah it's like it's like there's something that's like just barely extra that we call subjectivity right yeah just just really extra yeah some little some little qualitative something right right so like it to bring it back to Kierkegaard right we have all of these competing so maybe we have all these competing sort of determinations and and also we have freedom which is the infinite quality right and so it's just like actually the activity of negotiating between our determination and our freedom is actually what the self is so the self is essentially like the technology of effect management in some way right yeah yeah that's nice really nice so then so then the question becomes like okay if we're thinking about if we're thinking about sort of we can't think about extricate ourselves from certain flows as if there's some outside of the flow right we can't think about or our selves as as sort of somehow being able to transcend the material in a in an absolute way right but we can think about sort of strategically irrigating these yeah that's really nice a great word really a think you got me kind of talking about foot yeah that's great so you've got to think about okay well oh that's really I'm just super struck by it okay continue continue else is the thing well I mean so you think about the components of irrigation right you have like sometimes you build a dam right sometimes well so I mean now the structure started the metaphor starts to break down a little bit because you know like what do you have to dam up you know but my point is well on actuator that's precisely what like repression would be yeah like if you think if you think about that like okay the the flow that you're managing with irrigation as as being chains of associations or something like this then that's precisely what you're doing when you repress something is you you're attempting to block it yeah so that you're sorry you are you're attempting the block it but you're not racing exactly exactly right exactly exactly which is why which is why that what strategy would be better suited which is it precisely what Freud I think aims to do with talk therapy is to do the reverse type of irrigation where you build new channels of Association to free up the the the the associations that are that are trapped and bundled up and stuck right like you need to you need to actually increase like like create more channels or the flow of that energy to become unbind it from the unconscious in this gate yeah no that's good yeah that's good so I guess I guess then if we think about asceticism as a type of yeah like effect irrigation then like we think about the subject as sort of this thing will not even thing this localized kind of this localized intensity that has some sort of like excerpt like can exert some sort of influence on the influences on it right so so so figuring out how to position yourself and how to work with the power and influence that you have on the plane that you're sort of embedded and I guess is is the point of aesthetic technologies right so yeah staying for example fasting to use a very like a very concrete metaphor right interrupts or makes explicit the affective resonances of hunger or of and of lust greed right because these things come up in a really intense way during a fast that you have to like you have to become aware of right so when you couple something like fasting with with a very intentional kind of mindfulness or prayer right which is what fasting is supposed to entail it's not just not even it's becoming aware of not eating right you start to see the way that the the way the irrational and and kind of extremely powerful ways that your body is implicated in in this kind of this kind of great low right from from just being hungry to like having hateful lusty greedy thoughts right great so I don't know it just seems like so that's like just a very easy example of a choice that you can make as a subject in order to make more explicit the topography right and this and this is and this is part of like gaining some sort of awareness so like a good like if we want to think about the demonic right you have to gain awareness of the energies that you can bind to a name right you have to sort of like experience them and most of the time we don't experience them greatly right so yeah the demonic in the West the demonic is not experienced consciously for the most part yeah right oh that's really nice and I like it a lot yeah we think a lot of you can think about like we can also start to think about so it's very it's much easier to think about on the level of the individual when you start thinking about it on the level of like the system on systemic political yeah effects things like that it starts to get really tangley and messy I think the same principle applies but this is this is one of the questions that I'm sort of asking is like what is the possibility of a collective asceticism like I I mean you right you can think about the monastery for example as a prototype or like even like small political collectives that have their own practices right stuff like that even though even the potluck as an ascetic right yes so far as it like consciously battles against these sort of flows of individualism and sort of corporate greed like I mean thinking about the potluck as like time well-spent right that that is that's an aesthetic practice right in our you know right but if if well if especially if it's like viewed as such part of what it means to be in this group or part of what it means to be in this circle is we get together and share our food for free right well that that can be like you know that can reveal some of the ways in which that doesn't seem common sense and in in our in a sort of wider sense does that make sense I'm being kind of vague about it but no no I think it makes sense but yeah this is this is precisely like what's so difficult to talk about on a collective level because I think yeah yeah because it's such a embodied in material practice when it does have and it's difficult to speak about it in and in terms that aren't big or sound experimental and stuff like this I mean this is precise like yet last time I was reading Felix guitar DS the three Ecology's this is precisely talking about like the training and experimenting with subjectivity by entering into like different collective relations and again seeing like what aspects are produced in that space which ones are fostered which ones are warded off well because if we want to think about it in terms of in terms of irrigation if we think about in the in terms of the individual subject who irrigates well this happens already so like one of my favorite chapters of Freud is is the first chapter of civilization its discontents where he actually talks about so this isn't this is interesting he talks about the oceanic feeling as this merry feeling right being in this in this undifferentiated liquid space right don't steal this in the right paper now no I'm just kidding but we but we we start to we do start to irrigate or yeah redirect this ocean right we start to kind of when we when we find things to be unpleasurable or pleasurable so this is this is a big question as the emergence of the unpleasurable or the pleasurable that's still that's still a problem for me in this story but like given that and this is how the inside and the outside are formed we we like the stuff that makes us feel good and we associate ourselves with that stuff and we dislike things that make us feel pain pain or things that we can't have that we want right we disassociate ourselves from that and now we have an insider now to me and everything else but what so when we think about the individual we think about the ego or the things associated with this ego super-ego and in this subject right there own power to direct their effects excuse me and also the power that they have two eggs exert their influence on the exterior mm-hmm right and the way that that also can manage effect right that's the power that the individual has or the the influence that the individual can have on this mmm and it seems so that that's the easy way to think about it but like what starts to get complicated not in terms of quality but in terms of degree now all of a sudden you have people cooperating mm-hmm as a collective to two now what I don't want to do is say that the individual is primary and then you get a bunch of intergrate that's not right and precisely because of I mean the I mean you could go multiple routes for this but let's let's stick with Freud for example it's much easier to start to envision what this collective experimentation or collective irrigation isn't like this would be if you start with a notion of the subject that is already in multiplicity so so so it's still it's still obviously like extremely tricky but we are already in territory in territory that is easier to work with then like the liberal autonomous individualist tradition because there's they're starting with the individual as the monad and then entering it collective relations we start with the individual is already multiplicity is just we're just expanding the scope or the scale of that multiplicity not necessarily though maybe but not necessarily the the the form or kind right and the thing that we're talking yeah yeah it just seems like it just seems like so so the multiplicity of the subject would be the multiplicity of in flew in flowing energies in the subject and and the need to sort of negotiate those is that way by the multiplicity of the subject yeah and and just the the multiple competing drives and desires that constitute subjectivity okay yeah that makes sense yeah and yet there is some unity right there is some there is some unity to the subject like even if it's just a body right but that unity is not primary which is I think what we're saying that's exactly exactly this happen in fact but we see so then when you Wow okay I'm about to go off someplace so yeah so I guess I guess in terms of thinking about the demonic or and and especially in terms of thinking about like the church as a political institution that involves a thesis of some way right so you need to Nate you need to be able to name binded named destructive energies right well first of all discern right mmhmm yeah certain cuz sometimes things that seem destructive aren't and sometimes things that seem life-giving aren't right I'm so discernment how would you even so I don't even know like how would you even go about cuz people don't think about and I don't think necessarily that they should like people don't think about sort of tendencies in their lives in terms of effects in the way that talking about mm-hmm I think I'm a person so I'm talking about my like class of lay people that I'm like teaching on Sunday morning or so yeah I'm a person I have problems I work on them I'm getting better that's life right that's that's how most people think of their lives but like maybe like a super accessible way to get into maybe an accessible way and would be something like patterns or mmm like patterns of behavior not not to reduce it to that but to say to say well look at this like sort of like I guess what I'm trying to say is like if I'm talking to lay people how to get into or communicate this idea of effective flow as demonic influence without sort of having to give them an intro to Deleuze I mean right well I think one way to do it would be to go down the route of actually virtue ethics yep and Calton and it's interesting you'd say called self-cultivation but I would I would almost say self so in but I think in between self cultivation which seems to like building up its for me it's yeah it's to bootstrapping let's see that's a good phrase to stupid bootstrapping self-care these days I think is a bit too watered down with with like ya know just really treating yourself yeah in between these two which which what I'm about to say still shares an etymology with care self curation is an interest would be an interesting one but but what the main point that I would stress with with the like a slight twist that you could you can heat on virtue ethics in order to stress what we're talking about is to say that it's not as if you cultivate virtues out of nowhere right but they're always in response to external stimuli okay right like like if we think about a virtue as a disposition then it's a way of comporting yourself or orienting yourself toward externality right installs is to say is it then you then begin to stress the responsive aspect of it and then and then you just really want stiphu way of introducing kind of language of affective or responses to to effective voters and that but I think I I do think that there's something to be said of like they were like the really interesting relationship between virtue ethics and it'd be more it'd be like a more experimental virtue ethics where the virtues that were interested in cultivating aren't pre-given but but need to be invented almost each time we encounter something something new mm-hmm no that's really nice and I actually I actually think in this sense that I think that evangelicals and fundamentalists and like like Pentecostals like I actually think they're like way more primed for Deleuze than like a million's because there is this sort of continuity because precisely because they have a working category of the demonic right that there is this way right you know saying that like negotiating the external world and the self is like part of one United kind of field of spiritual warfare right so they don't think about it in terms of flow and flux and whatever but they do think about it in terms of good and evil right and so like the internal work of of prayer and of like sanctification and struggle right especially pronounced in sexuality in these sorts of circles is is also sort of located in external externality as well right so it's all part of this one sort of yeah struggle you know yes you only and the only thing that they're not the only thing but I guess the main thing that worries me is so if we're gonna talk about the demonic in terms of aspect and particularly in terms of like a post a post structuralist take on this yeah we like I don't I would not want to use like language of exorcism in terms of purification right because that's net that wouldn't that's not that's not the goal and that's actually like a type of I think doulas would call it like a micro micro fascism actually if you're if what you're seeking is the purification of the self from demons or unwanted effects and that's doomed to fail that's doomed to fail so it's a it would be more it has to be more of like oh that's why I like the word management because it doesn't imply the it doesn't imply purification or ridding oneself of these app effects right it just implies learning to live with them in ways in which they don't gain control but also in ways in which the flip side of that doesn't gain control with this like repetitive purification right or some yeah so so I mean I think the language of purification like in the sense that you're using it yeah it has problems but like I also think like there is there is in ascetic tradition a long history of like purification as or purgation even as like a really important step in in in the ascetic life right so what do they mean by that well so for example so that I mean there's tons of people I could point to for someone like Origen predation is like this series of spiritual exercises to sort of action in some way to extricate yourself from your sort of like identification with the body and like which we have to obviously like Rihanna stand in our context but like what he what he kind of means is essentially gaining this sort of like perspective where I am NOT my body and I am NOT yes I'm not simply the some of the influences on me right so you actually get this agency you you gain a sort of agency by by through via purgation right same thing with John of the Cross he talks so actually the dark night of the soul or like the via negativa the the negative theology in someone like John of the Cross is much less about a conceptual negative Fiala G although that's there it's excuse me it's much more about negating yourself to make to make yourself and negating especially sort of like drives and urges and this is so the question is one of like what does negation mean but it is it is sort of negating oneself to make oneself like properly receptive to mmm the divine right so so I guess the question is like what is the nature of negation now for me it seemed like I mean I mean agreement with you for me and negation like in like in these traditions is actually just a notation for a certain type of management mmm okay and I think that's what it is now I I think on a conventional level talking about it that's not exactly what people mean but I think that's essentially what negation does yeah yeah no that's the super hopeful and again I'm very unknowledgeable with these with these traditions so take your word for that but yeah that that makes sense to me and then then our diode readily sign off on that I think we're I think where we have to be careful and like this is the point that you raise I think it's right is windows idea when those sort of ideologies of purification and predation hit a sort of political level without yeah then and without proper like we need to Pertwee need to purify the predation right like what we need to do what we need to do is actually like this is necessary so the discussion that we're having right now is necessarily precisely because these aesthetic technology become political technologies right very easily without sort of interrogating what's actually going on when we are like purging ourselves right yeah there's a very which is a very nasty thing to sort of say especially like in light of eating disorders and then also like on a political level in light of like you know purging a population or something like that yeah right it's like it's very nasty so like we have to really interrogate like what does predation actually do yeah like what like what is what is the optimal case of predation and in that case I agree with you it's it's management of affect for like for a desired outcome and I don't think it translates on to a political body in this great all right yeah the temples really helpful I feel so much smarter now okay after after hashing this out a little bit the other the other subject do you have anything else they want to like add or now keep going no the other the other subject I wanted to get at and which will we'll talk a little bit more about this week on the podcast is the notion of like the eschaton and Futurity and like giving up the kingdom of god and locating the kingdom of god within you right you ain't giving up the kingdom of god as a political project and precisely in giving that up sort of locating the kingdom of god imminently but not not not like stressing not in terms of like an imminently realized eschatology but in terms of like being connected with the source of life that is the source of the kingdom of God you know what I mean yeah this is a more like mystical inward kind of turn which may be helpful or unhelpful I'm not sure but anyways hey can you give me like two seconds real quick and I'll totally okay I'm gonna pause recording I'll be right back yeah just sort of like thinking about thinking about ascesis in terms of which originally the term ascesis was like an athletic metaphor mmm like right it was originally like essentially like getting really good at your sport and like building your body into in a surly it's literally spiritual weightlifting like in yeah in in someone like origin and that and you see this in Paul right the running the race and stretching out for the prize like this is asceticism is tied in with this sort of like notion of spiritual struggle which is always likened to this sort of like athletic metaphor but anyway as well as that oh yeah so I have multiple reasons for wanting to bring demons back and the first reason is Christological which is to say we mean a better narrative of the life death and resurrection of Christ like why why did Christ die what was it because we we did some bad things and like so our scorecard is needs to be rectified so God needs to like kick Jesus to make it better right right that's that's the sort of like and that's the Nietzschean take on that's the Nietzschean reading of of christ right as that would to be which to be honest is is faithful to a lot of referenced and even some catholic views of the Incarnation I think that but I think that the first century has already given us a Christology in a soteriology it just demands a sort of cosmology that we don't hold and the first the first couple of generations of Christians thought that the world was under the influence of dark forces and these are the powers and the principalities that Paul talks about right our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against powers and principalities yeah which if we think about this in terms of effect management it's very interesting that light our struggle is not against those who manage effect right your struggle is against is against sort of destructive flows themselves and how do we sort of adequately manage them mm-hmm but anyways so you have to sort of presuppose a that that there is a demonic realm or some realm of dark forces and then what happens is Christ actually and and that death is somehow tied up in that right you know whether you think of it as physical death or spiritual death or something like that so Christ basically comes to conquer death and to put into and to put under his feet the dark forces right so this is this this is what Paul means by he'll subject all things to himself and this in my view is a universalist kind of cosmic reconciliation of the cosmos to God through Christ and so to me that's a great Christology if you can't if you can account for dark forces right yeah yep so I'm trying to account for dark forces without sort of separate yes or no to the existence of demonic entities as right metaphysical realities so yeah so basically it's a reappropriation of like the first two century three centuries of Christian theology yeah no this is great I mean I again like I the the Christology aspect of this like again you know more than even from what from what you just said I think effect is a great way to go especially yeah especially given like discourses on you know you could look at Masumi I think as an essay of this very title actually but but the autonomy about that like so as an as a precisely an impersonal force that circulates among so so you're able to account for dark forces without projecting without without locating an agent right yeah yeah which is always good well I shouldn't say and that's always been the danger of trying to account for dark forces historically is that it's it's those the dark forces are always projected on to a specific agent which is of course never actually the cause of the dark forces and then and then those agents well so you have one of you have one of two things happen either those agents are refugees in the Nora T's you know whatever right and so the dark force to project them to them and then me undergo this this method of purification you end up seeing like really awful genocide all things happen or kind of the flip side of this and often goes hand in hand is you rightly locate the dark forces in a kind of like a fascist regime but in in in locating them specifically there fail to take into account I'll be like all the the dark forces that you participate in and I participate in you right right and so this is like the you know you get the Manichaean worldview that say you know happens after 9/11 you locate the dark forces in in the agents of terrorism and then preemptively excuse in the u.s. prudently excuses themselves of whatever you know actions that those will take in order to defeat those dark forces so what I like about like turning towards something like effect to account for these things is that it's it's precisely impersonal circulates among bodies and can't be located in any specific person or group right mmm yeah so I have to to to two things to say about that one is just a comment I this is where I think Paul's Paul's sort of phrase that our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against powers and principalities like you always have to make that disjunction mm-hmm that the struggle is actually not against an object like that you can point to right so the struggle is not against the immigrant or or Donald Trump even as a price right struggle is not against that guy the struggle is against powers and print polities which we can hear annotate as the mismanagement or or unreflecting beholdin Asst toward destructive currents of energy right so I think that so I think that's keys my question for someone like Masumi is can there be a sort of ideational crystallization of effective energy flow something like that so for example the death Drive is a name that we give to one mhm love is a name that we give to another which we can also in it's sort of most intense forms we can call God right or you know greed is a name that we give to another and if we can if we can more precisely more or less precisely name certain currents can we not then sort of name certain certain demons and that sense do you see what I mean yeah that's interesting I so right so yeah I like that question and and how I would how I would initially respond to that is to say that it wouldn't actually be the current itself but I'm at asta sized form of that so like I think cancer is actually a really good analogy here because again it's not it's not as if it's possible or even desirable to to make any current or flow like like an enemy right but it would be when that effect kind of game like defeats all others right and begin in dominates a a particular subjectivity or something like that that would be the danger in the same way that like you know there's all these different cells in our body that are each doing their own each have their own purpose but it but when when some of them start to grow out of control and and take over a localized position on the body then it becomes a cancer then it's then it's a danger something with you but but I would just want to emphasize that it wouldn't be the flow itself but the the the victory of that flow over others right the disharmony or a disequilibrium in the subject resultant from a flow that gets carried away hmm but but so so I guess but I guess my question is like isn't so to take it back to sort of virtue ethics like is it isn't that precisely what we mean by something like greed it's not it's not the desire right yeah yeah desire to acquire something right like our acquisitive nature is like not inherently bad it's like we need three right like that's good but like the the dominance of this this acquisitive Drive like over and above sort right respecting others property or like respecting the livelihood of other people right things like that you know yeah yeah I'm with you definitely but then the question but then the question is the question becomes and this is something that you know I have no clue the question becomes is that men a sort of is that sort of an effective flow or that or is that like is greed itself can we name some sort of drive greed or is or does greed arise in a sort of imbalanced yeah or uncritical or unn it does arise in our relation to that that drive do you see I mean yes meaning see I mean I think I know I'm just gonna say in which case the demonic actually arises in sort of the configuration of the subject within a within an effective yeah yep I like this I think also I'm gonna I'll send you after after this conversations ends I'll send you this there's recording of daniel smith talking about aunty Oedipus and some I'm seeing a similarity between something he says and some in something you're saying now and what in your talking about it on the level of kind of individual subjectivity and he's talking about it in relation to entire societies so so one of the like when you when you look at and I'm taking daniel Smith slash DuBose and got areas word for this but one of the common of common narratives in anthropology right is that so-called primitive societies that don't have a state right are defined negatively as the absence of a state right right in ante Atticus DNG show they they articulate a positive definition of so-called primitive societies as as then having deliberate mechanisms in place to prevent the formation of a state and so anyway so this seems like a detour I promise you it's not so Daniel Smith locates the state as one end one extreme of a you know it's a despotic regime that is that is a potentiality that the society is is toward right it can be tending toward all the time and and then on the other end of it there's the pure dissolution of the collective altogether right he's saying that the the so-called primitive societies had deliberate mechanisms and so they so they recognized the tendency toward both of those extremes and they have deliberate mechanisms in place to prevent the formation of either state or like a purely anarchic like individualist dissolution of the collective so so sit length is back meant what you're saying is yes we could we would be able to recognize drives or if he wanted to call them tendencies toward something like greed or whatever vice and then the the effect management would be the deliberate mechanism that we put in place to prevent that tendency from fulfilling its end so this okay so this is the question so would you call it so this is the question about the drive okay so if we want to say the drive is the psychical manifestation of a certain flow like that is inscribed in the body but is also sort of connected with matter and and material but like that we can sort of that causes us problems in in psychoanalysis it causes us problems and that's how we discover it well let's just would you say when you say the drive would you say like in a quick like a like letter a acquisitive drive so the drive to acquire example like I don't know I don't like I'm sort of speaking out of my ass like in as a sort of example but like left to its own devices this drive would result in greed lust gluttony etc not all the time I don't think so this is the class oh this is the question would it would it end up this way and and the question is so like in an Aristotelian sort of sense like if we locate because like what I'm trying what I'm trying to do is locate where in literally where in matter where in the body where in the psyche is sort of vice right so and which actually I don't think you can locate right which is important but actually like vicious vicious disposition is actually like it as you're saying which I think is right like a sort of particular kind of configuration of Drive mm or in a particular kind of configuration of the subjects relation to affix image to drives relation to habit relations right so maybe these things sort of like emerge in terms of like a like a configuration like you know yeah at this point I'm getting I'm getting to the edge of where my vocabulary can take me and I just yeah read more but no I mean I think this is on I think this is right on track I would subscribe to what you just said yeah and and I think this is I you know I don't know where like I I also write need need to read more but about its it'd be interesting sick who who is doing most contemporary work on this stuff um yeah so then I guess the lat I guess the last question is just one that I think will tackle more on Friday right but I would love to sort of see where we're at today it's this idea of the proper and I know so this is where I'm not a pro structuralist when I start using words like proper or or yeah or correct me so given a sort of framework of Christian asceticism which I have one foot in and sort of leftist politics which I have another foot in right so given given these ascetic regimes thinking about what is the proper relation to the coming kingdom of God right so in other words something like sometimes we want to sort of jump the gun instantiate the kingdom of God in history and think that the work that we're doing is somehow bringing the kingdom of God to earth in in the sense of like the Lord's Prayer right thy kingdom come okay well that kingdom come so I'm gonna go like I'm gonna go like get people registered to vote right or like go work at a food pantry bla bla bla bla bla now if you put me in that person side-by-side we're actually not do it like materially and don't look that different right but I think effectively like I guess the question is one of like what kind of cathexis do these activities take in your life right so for me we're like hat what what is the status of for example feeding the hungry working for better housing regulation working for blah blah you see what I mean like what is the what is the relationship between this justice work and like capital K capital G kingdom of God right yeah for me the kingdom of God is within you which means that there's a sort of way that the kingdom of God is accessible to you in prayer and accessible to you in community in a sort of way in a kind of way right but from this from this source flows your actions in history right and so my mic I guess attachment or cathexis to political to political action is much different than the one who says the kingdom of God is ahead of us right and and needs desperately to right we instantiate justice in history in order to make the kingdom of God a reality yeah yes exactly yeah quick that three percent and yeah and as we've said I can't plug my phone in and talk with Hitman's at the same time anyways but no I so yeah I think I mean I like to think about it in terms of I think prefigurative politics is a good framework to view this relationship – yeah capital K capital GK we've got as well right we're so it's it's slightly future but it's definitely it's it's its depth it's much different from the the the type of yeah Kings God in the future robustly because because what it says basically the future is contained in the present right yeah so prefigurative politics is the idea that you act now in accordance with what the kingdom of God might look like in the future but that means that your means need to be consistent with the ends and it also means that they emanate from precisely yes the source within you right now in your year you're taking that count if we want to use it like the melancholic object of the kingdom of God that you've internalized is then as then once again externalized in like the performative act of prefiguring it's Rhian stick on yeah yeah no that's interesting that's good yeah well I don't want it I don't want to kill your phone but this has been it's been really fun sweet yeah this has been this has been fun looking forward to I haven't heard the molten man yet but looking forward to that it's gonna be there's gonna be a lot to talk about I think I have a hypothesis that Moltmann actually will fit the sort of temporality that we've been discussing because he's a Christian right and if he was a Marxist he wouldn't be able to write so but we'll talk about this on Friday so I'm looking forward to it sweet all right doing right always a pleasure all right man take it easy ears but

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