Showing posts from August, 2010

Momentarily Free

"Spinoza knew that all things long to persist in their being; the stone eternally wants to be a stone and the tiger a tiger. I shall remain in Borges, not in myself (if it is true that I am someone), but I recognize myself less in his books than in many others or in the laborious strumming of a guitar. Years ago I tried to free myself from him and went from the mythologies of the suburbs to the games with time and infinity, but those games belong to Borges now and I shall have to imagine other things. Thus my life is a flight and I lose everything and everything belongs to oblivion, or to him.

"I do not know which of us has written this page."
--J.L. Borges, "Borges and I"

The above passage is an excerpt from one of my favorite philosophical essays, "Borges and I." I like it because it's short! But also because it accurately portrays the relationship between identity and forgetting. Borges describes how the true self operates not through memory, b…

Relevance and Immanence

Philosophers worry about most everything, but one of their favorite things to worry about is the relevance of philosophy to life. At a recent conference blogging was brought up as a way of connecting philosophy to "life." While this thought reminded me that I have been neglecting this blog and is part of the reason I am posting today, it also made me wonder a bit, as philosophers do, just what was meant by "relevant to life."

If a blog is what gets you closer to life, then you must be pretty far away to begin with. Which means of course that you are not in life at all. This is actually a strange thought, but it is also true. We are always alive, but we are not always in life.

So what is this thing called a life?

Deleuze says this: "A life is the immanence of immanence, absolute immanence: it is complete power, complete bliss." A life is thus that which has no outside. It is pure immanence: that which refuses to judge or reflect or act from a position that i…