Thursday, March 04, 2010

Michael Dean Benton: Transperspective Waiting

(Part of a longer essay titled "Monsters, Spectres, and Differences: A Transperspective Waiting." In my mind, friendship is a radical engagement... )

I suffer from a Deleuzian stutter, or a Derrida-da-da, in which my language is stifled by my own personal ghosts. “We have lost the friend . . . the friend of the perhaps . . . of respectfully experiencing that friendship." So many dead, some institutionalized, and some just disappeared back into the void. “I will continue to begin again … and I’ll have to wander all alone in this long conversation that we were supposed to have together.”

These spectral visitors stay my hand reminding me that the only answers are in questions that produce more questions: “I know why you hardly sleep. Why you live alone and why night after night you sit at your computer. … I know because I was once looking for the same thing. … It’s the question that drives us."

They point out those that have escaped into the amnesia of recycled consumer pleasures, who can blame them for choosing the steak over the gruel? “Your soul is like an appendix! I don’t even use it!”

Still I am listening for the emergence of a being, another who escapes my comprehension, this listening requires a transition to a new dimension of understanding. I am listening to you: although I do not understand what you are saying, I am attentive to your silence amongst history’s mentions, I am attempting to understand and hear your intention. Which does not mean: I comprehend you, or that I know you … No, I am listening to you as someone that I do not truly know … with you but not as you … I reside in a realm of absolute silence in order to hear what you have to say or what is left unsaid or what reverberates from the unknown. I quest for new words, for new meanings, for new modes of understandings that will bridge this river of silence … for an alliance of possibilities that will not reduce the Other to an item of property or a subject to be mastered. This unspeakable silence is a rift that shatters the boundaries of my life in order to produce a conflagration of nothingness that sears the forest of my consciousness clearing the way for new growths. Perhaps, as the borders of my psyche that restrain my various selves breaks-up there will be the productive explosion of new life spreading across my interior landscape. Chaos enters my realm and produces … impossibilities. “Perhaps the impossible is the only chance of something new, of some new philosophy of the new … Perhaps friendship, if there is such a thing, must honor [faire droit] what appears impossible here." Where are the friends that ask questions of the dominant and seek the impossible?


Jacques Derrida’s eulogy for Gilles Deleuze: “I’ll Have to Wander Alone.”
The character Trinity speaking to Neo in the movie The Matrix
Michael Kelso on That 70s Show
Jacques Derrida's Politics of Friendship

Sprinkled throughout:

Personal Pain Suffered By Thivai at Various Times

Additional inspiration:

Rebecca Saunders course "Mourning of Modernity"

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