Tuesday, January 31, 2006


Allowing oneself to tbe the place where thoughts are joined, passive, synthetic. Passivity is underrated by its nature, doubly so by its culture. The art of letting things pass, of neither knowing nor not knowing, but taking heed. I practice the art of letting things pass so as to gain some advantage, a betterment. Not all lassitudes are equivalent. Mine will be a better lassitude than it has been--or I will drop it like a bad habit.

When Kant says "All bodies are extended" I think of Descartes (Spinoza, Leibniz...) and this helps me understand how Kant could have had believed that such a judgement is analytical. A person in Kant's position who says "All bodies are extended" is making an assumption about matter, about what really is. And there is an elision: "in space." Now we can ask, Are all bodies extended in Minkowski spacetime? All bodies are curved. All bodies are folded. Beyond the copula is in, into, towards....

Towards what is the body of the pebble extended? Towards silence. Towards other pebbles. Towards the sea. If we take a pebble from the stream, for the purpose of making a judgement, what can we say about it that could possibly make it louder than it already is? To hear the pebble at full volume, let it be. Elision too is a matter of judgement. As is euphony. "Minkowski spacetime" is euphonious to my ears, in certain phrases, but "Einstein-Minkowski spacetime" is just plain barbarous.

When I took notice of Mariela Szirko's work, it crossed my mind that I ought to offer some kind of analysis, or minimally, a word or two by way of explanation. How can I reconcile my interest in Szirko's approach to the phenomenon of consciousness with my interest in phenomenology? Fundamentally I can't. Empiricism is too broad a commitment, for me at least, to adequately address and resolve a conflict between idealistic and materialistic premises. Szirko's work interests me in part as a reminder that the grounding of natural science takes many different forms. We shouldn't assume that the strengths and weaknesses of one variety of naturalism, even a widespread, enduring, dominant variety, will be characteristic of all varieties of naturalism, or fully comprehend the possibilites inherent in the project of natural science.

As I take notice of blogger Kenny Pearce's Persons as Events (ht Brandon), I feel the urge to say something, something about substance, of substance. Even if it goes against my better judgement. Alas, such is blogging.

posted by Fido the Yak at 9:42 AM.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wonder how you came to be interested in Mariela Szirko's work? Do you teach philosophy and/or electroneurobiology!

February 06, 2006 4:55 PM  
Blogger Fido the Yak said...

I just discovered Szirko by surfing over at conscious entities.

No, I don't teach philosophy. I'm not an academic--unless academia recognizes cognatic descent.

Now I will reveal something intimate about myself. Sometimes, perhaps in states that may be described as hypnogogic or hypnopompic, I have an awareness of my wife's brainwaves changing state. (We sleep together in the same bed.) But, if I should happen to mention it, we will sometimes disagree as to the timing of these shifts--so my sense of being aware may be chalked up to hallucination or fantasy, or...

Do you ever have an awareness of being asleep before you're asleep, or a sudden awareness of having been asleep, but not being asleep? How long does such a moment last?

This whole business of dialectric states fascinates me. I really don't have the background to critically dig into Szirko's work, but I think it's provocative and worth trying to follow as best as I can.

February 06, 2006 9:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neither am I an 'academic' - neither had a job at univ. altho I did co-translate Guattari's last bk 'Chaosmosis' (so I must be one of two people). And if you look at Cogprints I uploaded Crocco's essay 'On Mind's Localization' onto Cogprints.

You do seem to have a great interest/knowledge in the 'history of philosophy' and 'philosophy of biology'. I think you were referring recently to Irigaray's 'to be two'...
Hmmm. More later,
Never blogged before.

February 07, 2006 2:37 AM  
Blogger Fido the Yak said...

Small world. I have Chaosmosis translated by Paul Baines and Julian Pefanis. Hello, Dr. Bains.

Here is a link to Crocco's On Minds' Localization on cogprints.

It's been a while since I looked at Irigaray. But what is recently after all? Maybe I should put Two be two on my reading machine with Levinas' Humanism of the Other, Guattari's Chaosmosis, and some of Deleuze's books which will need to be returned to the library soon.

February 07, 2006 9:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dammit, you've broken my cover. I'll have to get plastic surgery, find a new anonym and speak with a terrrrible accent.
Sounds like you are a reading machine. I don't know how you do it...
I have trouble reading at all - altho I'm enjoying 'The Rivers North of the Future: The Testament of Ivan Illich.' One of the few people whose bks I've alwayse refrained from culling.
Hasta la proxima

February 07, 2006 7:53 PM  

Post a Comment

Fido the Yak front page