Saturday, 16 December, 2017.

Implication of complication

Two possible formulations therefore the present and that other beginning where the present ends and consequently ending with the journey in the dark the mud the traveler right leg right arm push pull coming so utterly from nowhere and no one and so utterly on his way there that he has never ceased from traveling will never cease from traveling dragging his sack where provisions are dwindling but not so fast as appetite.
Samuel Beckett, How it is

There are two ways to say Yes.

Yes can take the form of an unconditioned and absolute affirmation of total negation and thus affirm its own negation. Nothing is more erroneous than to believe that this manner was invented, completed, and perfected by Hegel, since that manner was neither invented nor completed by Hegel. Affirmation of negation is affirmation of the actual, not genuine, but real motion of negation, and in Hegel, it is well known, it is the matter only of a false motion, in other words, it is the matter of an abstract logical motion of mediation. To affirm the negation, to submit to the work of negation, this means to agree to the real suffering of its acting, to the real endurance of its immediate acts. This endurance must take place in one's own most intimate experience; it must be manifested as a dramatization of the most proximate events, whose pattern is nothing other than one's own experience. And it is no news at all that in Hegel there is nothing of this kind of dramatization, since for him the motion of the action of negation takes the form of the abstract motion of notions, and not the form of the real motion of the body, of its forces, of the repetition of the actions of these forces which, through acting upon the body, without any mediation, immediately, also act upon the mind. Therefore, if there is at all a dramatization in Hegel, which comes to its climax, then it is just a false dramatization, a heartbreaking melodramatic scenario that arises as an effect of a false motion. But, there is no reason for us to deal any further with denunciation of Hegel; he was denounced long ago; Kierkegaard and Nietzsche have depreciated him, when they showed that Hegel suggested a kind of a becalmed motion of notions instead of wild motion of physis; when they, therefore, have shown that in Hegel there is no involvement of bodies in an infinite repetition of always the same horrible forces (Kierkegaard), that in Hegel there is no involvement of the body in an unpredictable, destructive and productive motion of "the theatre of cruelty" of physis (Nietzsche). That Hegel created a philosophy for 'beautiful souls.' There's no dramatization; no actual, bodily endurance of negation; the assent to negation is never the same as the assent to negation that is becoming a bodily passion.

Just as the case is, for example, with Kafka. Kafka's Yes is a Yes to negation, to suffering - to refraining, not-acting. "I want to accept everything and to endure", says Kafka, thus establishing the regime in which acceptance means the acceptance of endurance, an assent to persistence, one foundation of a configuration of an order in which such an assent in fact is not a choice at all, since there is no other possibility, since the other possibility is to turn to abstraction, therefore, to a distortion of that which is alive, to its degeneration, its deformation. "Abstractions are only distorted images of our passions, ghosts from the cracks of the inner life",1 a distortion, de-formation of that which is alive, which is distorted exactly because it is situated as an image. Abstraction is not the way of prehension, of grasping the truth of that which is alive (body); it is not at all the way of grasping the truth; it is proliferation of representations, multiplication of functions, tape on which representations of monstrous life are recorded, representations of life which is, as such, a monstrous one, because it is released of passions, deprived of endurance: it unfolds as its own image, which originated through the projection of the crack of interiority upon the white canvass of the notion. And no life, no growth occurs by the projection of interiority upon the exteriority, through projection that keeps the distance between them, but it happens in such a way, and only in such a way, that interiority becomes exteriority, that by enduring the exteriority, not by withdrawing from it, it develops, it turns, into exteriority, becomes the exteriority which negates its own interiority. "Man does not grow from down upwards, but from interior to exterior," until, in an utmost effort, the whole interiority leaks into exteriority. But, exteriority compresses the interiority which suffers it. It is always a matter of involution, never evolution. This is the reason why Kafka refuses to say Yes to the positive, to assent to action and not to suffering, to joy and not to grief. Joy is mad, it resists this regime of condensation. "We want, as inpidual beings, to keep and maintain the life as long as possible in the state of joy. It is a rebellion through which we waste life." Joy is uneconomical, it depletes itself in action, but the point is to preserve life through the logic of saving, through passivity in front of the exterior, through refraining, not-acting, through suffering the exterior whose pressure is increasing all the time, until its force of compression makes of the passive state of suffering the action of diminishing, of becoming small, and becoming smaller and smaller and smaller. "I'm becoming smaller, and smaller shall I be, until I'm the smallest on the Earth," until complete diminishing, complete uncatchability. But this uncatchableness of the small, of the minuscule, it is not fulfillment; far from fulfillment, it is unfinishable, incompletable, it is an endless acting, infinite suffering of that which becomes bigger and bigger. "There are two possibilities: endlessly becoming small, or, be such. This latter is fulfillment, therefore, not-acting, not-doing, and the former - the beginning, therefore, the act."2 The former is the beginning of the starting of the motion of one compressed point which is now so tiny that it can hurt itself terribly even on smallest things, even on those smooth and oval. The number of injuries is multiplying, the amount of suffering is increasing. This entire plan is grounded on a trick. The ruse of this plan is this: one should become the smallest one in the world, tinier than the tiniest. Imperceptible. Unperceivable. Escaping even the lenses of the microscope. What has become and what does not cease to become thus abnormally tiny and miniscule, that does not endure anything anymore, because it is so small that it, unnoticeably and unperceivably, circulates through exteriority, which cannot find it now, because it cannot see it, nor can it touch it, nor hear it. But this plan has also its blind spot. Gigantic, gargantuan, enormously huge exteriority joyously keeps on spendthrifting the forces of its pressure, because it is nothing other than the network of the forces of pressure; but, this time, it pressures vacantly, depleting itself, its own life; that which is small and tiny escapes it, and so it depletes itself until it is depleted, until it is exhausted, and breathes out in a pure and absolute death. Assent to suffering, Yes to negation, did not have as the effect only the compression of interiority up to its uncatchability and imperceptibility, all the way to its disappearance, but it, by the very act itself, caused the implosion of exteriority too, its becoming dead. The assent to the suffering of negation negated this negation, therefore, not through some abstract motion of contradiction and mediation but through genuine annihilation of negation. "Yes" confirmed the negation and patiently suffered until its complete depletion, up to the point of absolute cessation of every negation, after which no negation whatsoever is possible; but, no assent either, after which nothing is possible anymore, after which nothing at all is there anymore, because exteriority, together with "interiority" which, small and tiny as it is, runs and circulates through it, pulls it into itself, thus becoming the black hole which had eaten itself too. This is the point of the unthinkable. Disappearing of every thinking. Cessation of everything. Catastrophe. Ruin. Disaster. Destruction. End of story.

Maybe Kafka was not able to say Yes in some other way. Maybe he was not able to think exteriority in some other way. Because he lives in a modern world, he is moving in a paysage of Modernity, therefore, in a landscape of ruins, in the regions of "modern necrophilia," painted already by Bruegel. "Triumph of Death by Bruegel the Elder, in Madrid, is perhaps the most horrible orchestra of death and execution... visionary camp for extermination a priori, a skeleton-conductor on one side, and lined up skeletons on the other. The landscape of death has indeed no equal, and the most horrible in it is the corpse pierced in a hollow trunk and those crucified on wheels at the edge of the sky."3 The most horrible happened in the beginning, and even before the beginning, in the announcement of the beginning, the most horrible happened at the very inception of Modernity. Entire Modernity unfolds after the most horrible already unfolded. Modernity is life after the general disaster. Modern paysage is flooded with sights and scenes of murders and torture, executions, decapitations, cut up bodies. Everywhere skeletons, corpses, graveyards, carcasses, rotten skulls, faces of dying, arms from which shadows rise. All over the stench of putrescence, of decay, of disassembling of muscular tissue and bones, everywhere noises of fat worms. Only "pure" thought remained, busy with endless self-negation, only cogito and its cogitationes remained; thoughts which, after ruining all exteriority and the life of exteriority, run and circulate through fragments and pieces of destructed world; left to endless self-ruination themselves. Dread and horror.

If the skeletons in Modernity were still singing, guided by the conductor-baton of the conductor-skeleton, if there still was the world, the world of ruins, then, with Kafka, this world, by an unbelievable, ruining compulsion, pulled itself into itself. Only God was saved, but it was so because he, in fact, is not in this world, because he is not this world, because he is outside of the world, beside the world, just its efficient cause, just its transient cause. With Kafka, ruins and skeletons, corpses and rotten trunks disappear. There disappears the triumph of death, because death, too, finally deceased, breathed out. And than breathing out breathed out too. Ruins are ruined. Nothing is there anymore, and there is no one anymore who could watch this spectacle of complete end. And to celebrate it. This is one way to say Yes.

Of course, of course, this is not the only way. As always, there is an other way. But, regarding this way, another deal with God is necessary to be made. Some different God is needed, in order to say Yes in some other way. First of all, God cannot be the efficient cause of the world, no matter for what definition of efficient cause we decide. Even if we accede to Descartes' reformulation of efficient cause, which is salutary only at first sight, according to which efficient cause is not only the one that is prior to its effect, logically as well as actually, but, also, the one that could be simultaneous to its effect, never logically, only really, even then the cause remains exterior to that what is caused, the effect falls into the exteriority of its cause. And then: because the effect is outside of it, the fate of the cause does not depend on the fate of its effect, the effect needs its cause in order to exist at all and to be known, but the cause is sufficient for itself; in order to exist and to be known it does not need its own effect; there is no interest in any respect in the effect, it will not affect the essence of the cause, not a single change in the essence of the effect shall no more, after it is caused, cause the modification of the essence of the cause; the effect can be annihilated, through an acting of some other cause, immediately after it is created; it will in no way whatsoever lessen the amount of the reality, that is, the perfection, the perfectness, of the cause. In one word, the cause is, after it has caused, and thus affirmed its power, completely indifferent regarding the destiny of its effect. The cause is not interested in its effect. The efficient cause is, therefore, one distanced, or remote cause, the cause that keeps itself at a distance from its effect. For "by a remote cause, we understand a cause which is in no way conjoined to the effect," (Ethics, I, Prop. XXVIII, Note)4 no matter how the effect might be conjoined, connected with it. This means that the cause does not suffer, in any way whatsoever, and anything at all, when the effect suffers, that the cause does not endures, in any way and anything at all, when its effect is exposed to the horrible endurance of the actions of other causes that will decompose it. Nothing that happens to the effect happens anymore to the cause. They remain at one unbelievable and improbable, thus, intransitive distance from each other. Their simultaneity has not brought them any closeness. Their simultaneity is, therefore, the simultaneity of different times, since motion and rest in one does not affect states or dispositions of motion and rest in the other. Remote cause is an evil cause, of course, not because it forgets its effect; for that it would have to have a motive or a secret reason, since nothing is forgotten without a hidden motive; and of course, not because it hates its effect, since it couldn’t be evil at all, but because it is perfectly indifferent to its effect, because it does not care, it does not give a damn for its effect.

If God is the efficient cause of the world, then it can, therefore, keep itself at a distance from that world, without any conjunction or connection with that world; then all kinds of disasters can happen in the world, including the last one, the destruction of the world, and still God will be just fine, nothing wrong with him at all. Negation of his effect is not, at the same time, his own negation, since he broke up with his effect, since he affirms, or confirms endlessly from within himself, and independently from his effect, since his effect, the existence of his effect, because it does not explain him, because it is not in connection with him, because it does not express him, because it is not in connection with him, is not the force that affirms or confirms him. God develops himself within himself, expresses himself independently from the world, in his own endless and infinite interiority. The world itself and all finite modes within it are not the development of pine essence, are not its motion, are not its affirmation and its explanation, and still less its expansion. That is why such a world can suffer the work of ruining, and God to be, at the same time, its good, absolutely beautiful and magnificent cause; that is why such a world can become the fragment of a former life, and God lives, on and on, and at the same time, in affirmations of its infinite alive essence. That is why such a world can become Pompeii (and it is not accidental that Pompeii is, first of all, and above all, "a metaphysical town"), in which "one feels all the heat of death, rendered all the more vivid by the fossilized and fugitive signs of daily life: wheel-ruts in the stone, worn curbs, the petrified wood of a half-open door, the fold of a toga on a body buried beneath the ashes. No history stands between these things and us, like the kind that gives monuments their prestige: they materialize for us here, right now, in the very heat where death caught them."5 Things in such a world, from which God had distanced himself, materialize themselves into the benumbedness of the stone, until this benumbedness, through one gigantic compression of the involution, since this world, through its own evolution, does not develop further its cause which has abandoned it, and therefore does not have its own evolution, therefore, until this benumbedness is negated through one negation that shall compress it into an absolute simplicity of non-existence. That is why such a world does not break or crash until it becomes the totality, the wholeness; it does not break until it breaks and crashes and annihilates the last of its fragments. That is why in such a world Yes can mean only affirmation of a negation that will annihilate every Yes, as well as, after all, every No, too.

However, everything changes if God comes closer. If he comes that close, namely, to become completely intimate with its effects. God's intimacy with the world realizes itself through the establishing of the difference between God's powers and God's attributes. According to this difference, God's powers (power of thinking and power of existence) are two absolute powers which are not relative regarding the limits of our knowledge, as the case is with attributes, of which, due to our finite constitution, we are in the position to know only two. Thus when we affirm God's absolute power we do not affirm his absolute perfection, his infinite perfection, but we affirm that God exists only by producing an "infinity of things in absolute infinity of his attributes," just as we affirm that God thinks himself absolutely, through thinking "the infinity of things in the infinity of modes." That God exists only if he produces within his infinite attributes, this means that God exists only if he produces things in his essence that is not different from his existence (E, I, Prop. XX). God, in other words, exists only if he produces an infinite multitude of things through himself and within himself, only if he is the immanent cause of everything he produced. "All things which are, are in God, and must be conceived through God. Therefore, God is the cause of those things that are in him... God, therefore, is the indwelling and not the transient cause of all things" (E, I, Prop. XVIII, Proof). That all things are in God who produces them, this means, also, that God is in all things he produced. God is so close to his effects that he is in them. But, God produces continuously and he does not repeat his products. From the necessity of his nature there has to follow "endlessly many in endlessly many ways," because God is surrendered, relinquished to variations, and in the constant motion of production he produces the difference, he produces the infinite multitude of his states or dispositions, which are, afterwards, through their existence, determined to further cause the existence, not the essence, of other finite modes.

That God continuously produces always-different finite modes, which are in him, thus affirming himself, that is, his power, means that God, in this endless self-affirmation, constantly expands and becomes complex. Through the work of self-production, in which that which is produced continues to produce, and to cause, God carries out his motion to unfold from the degree of smallest complexity (of qualitative undifferentiatedness of attributes) to the degree of the largest complexity in which, not only that he creates an infinite multitude of finite effects, but enables that there exists no finite effect which would not cause, that there exists not a single effect from which some effect would not follow, as well as that from the effect of the effect there follows the effect, and so on to infinity. Through the work of self-production God is moving from simple to complicated, always making new complications; he appears as the complicator of the universe, and the universe establishes itself as one gigantic, infinite complication. God’s self-affirmation, his Yes that he constantly speaks to himself, does not mean anything else but constantly new complications. Of course, God is (and only God can be that) the adequate cause of all his effects, therefore, the cause whose effect can be explained only through the cause itself. This, in other words, means that God constantly works ("we act when anything takes place, either within us or externally to us, whereof we are the adequate cause" (E, III, Def. II)), and that he is forever and absolutely joyful, since he is absolutely perfect, and he is such, because he successfully complicates. God is, therefore, in his infinite work of complicating, infinitely joyous; he is rejoiced about and by every new complication, because it is always a confirmation, or affirmation, of his power, the evidence that he has absolutely the largest possible amount of reality-ness, of realityhood. And since there's never enough joy for anyone, not even for God, there's never an end to the complication. God is the absolutely joyous, and joyful, complicator.

Although every complication is necessary, since it is necessarily effectuated by its cause; although, therefore, an infinite multitude of complications, which terribly complicate themselves, is necessarily effectuated by the acting of the complicator that acts according to the necessity of his own pine nature; and although none of the complications which was produced could have not been, so to speak, un-produced, nevertheless it does not follow that it is possible to predict, or foresee, new complications. It means, for finite modes, which might be able to find out that everything is unfolding by the necessity of pine nature, but not how everything is going to unfold further on, it means that God's complicating is not reasonable, but that it is paradoxical, that the universe is one huge paradox of the complicator. For, the essential function of reasonableness, of good sense, consists in predicting, or foreseeing; and in order for prediction to be possible, it is needful that everything moves, from the state of the most possible differentiatedness to the state of the least possible differentiatedness. This is the disposition, or the nature of reason. It was already Descartes' twelfth rule for conducting the mind that determined that the situation of the indispensableness of acquiring knowledge of the "multitude of objects" is unbearable for reason and completely unreasonable, and that, because of that, reason entirely concentrates itself to make this situation reasonable, it fixates itself to "deducing one thing from a certain number of objects," to reducing the difference to sameness, to reducing the multitudeness to oneness; and after that, after he settled all this so nicely, according to easy rules, of easy method, he easily foresees and predicts the effects from the least possible number of causes. And Kafka's God, completely predictable, is a completely reasonable God, whose acting is moving into the direction of absolute simplicity, of annihilating all differences, of compression of multiplicity into sameness. "Good sense is essentially distributive' But the distribution which it puts into motion is accomplished in conditions which place difference at the beginning and involve it in a controlled movement which is supposed to... equalize, annul and compensate it... Good sense is altogether combustive and digestive."6 Such 'good-sensed' God is always going in one direction, moving from that which is complicated to that which is simple, "from the singular to regular, from the remarkable to the ordinary." To swallow and to burn, to combust, all exceptions, singularities, particularities, to negate all differences and after that to digest them into one, always the same inanimate substance; it is the act of a reasonable God who endeavors towards simplifying, towards inanimate sameness, towards death. Negation is always the matter of the healthy digestive tract and regular digestion.

But, God-complicator follows the logic of paradox, the logic of the sense, and not of the meaning (because, paradox is not contradictory); a direction which is completely different from the line of reasonableness, good-senseness, because it goes from the least differentiated to the most differentiated, because it moves towards constant multiplying of differences, to ever larger complicating, to insisting on the singular (every finite mode is essentially different from any other finite mode), which shows that sense is prehended through motion in, at least, two directions simultaneously, and in the ideal case, in the case of God-the-immanent-cause, through simultaneous motion in the infinite multitude of directions, that is, through the infinite multitude of his own qualitatively different infinite essences. God-complicator shows that sense has an infinite multitude of senses at the same time, and that, in accordance with this teaching, he constitutes the universe as "the system of all systems, or the abnormal set."7 But, that this set is abnormal, this does not mean that it is senseless. This only means that it is sensible and unreasonable, or not-good-sensed. This is the entire complicatedness of this complication of the abnormal set. For, it makes different things to be simultaneously affirmed, but not in the way in which they are affirmed by reasonable, good-sensed, digestive God, ruminant of differences; therefore, not in the way that their differentness is repressed or subdued, but in the way that the difference is affirmed through its difference, in the way that the multitude of things and features is simultaneously affirmed. "We are no longer faced with an identity of contraries, which would still be inseparable as such from a movement of the negative and of exclusion. We are rather faced with a positive distance of different elements: no longer to identify two contraries with the same, but to affirm their distance as that which relates one to the other insofar as they are 'different.'"8 All finite modes are affirmed in their uniqueness, singularity and differentness, differentiality, and all are connected or conjoined through their reciprocal distance. They are close exactly because their reciprocal distance is affirmed, as well as because the very difference itself is affirmed as positive. All finite modes, determined for existence and acting by God the complicator, thus communicate reciprocally, and all are distributive, all are producers of new differences; they cause the existence of new finite modes. "Every inpidual thing, or every thing which is finite, and has a conditioned existence, cannot exist or be conditioned to act, unless it be conditioned for existence and action by a cause other than itself, which also is finite, and has a conditioned existence. And likewise this cause cannot in its turn exist, or be conditioned to act, unless it be conditioned for existence and action by another cause which also is finite, and has a conditioned existence, and so on to infinity... Whatsoever is conditioned to exist and act, has been thus conditioned by God" (E, I, Prop. XXVIII, and Proof). And so everything complicates infinitely.

But, the fundamental implication of complication is that it is explication. And in the case of God-complicator, this means that the fundamental implication of complication is that it is the self-explication of the Complicator. For, every finite mode, of any attribute whatsoever, is to be found in God; all things are in him who complicates them. But, that all things are in God, that is, that all things are affections of God's infinite essences, this does not mean anything else than that God is in all things. Things are present in God who is present in things, and vice-versa; God is present in that what is present in him. Thus the relation is twofold. God is immanently in things, things are inherently in God. But, the difference between immanence and inherence refers to the difference in the relation of God towards things and of things towards God. That every thing is inherent to God, this means that it is the effect of God who is its immanent cause, but in such a way that it, as the effect, is not, to its cause, in the relation of denotation, which would happen if God is efficient cause; but the opposite is not valid too: God is not the universal denotator of finite things either, he is not the region which functions as the principle of all possible denotations, because denotation subsumes inpidual states under the sameness of denotator, and in the case of God-complicator, the point is that differences are not subsumed under the one, that what makes them different is not abstracted, is not negated, but is affirmed. The relation of denotation is abandoned. But, when one side of the duality between qualities of substance and its finite states is abandoned, when one side of the duality between the existence of the substance and singularities is abandoned, therefore, when the dimension of denotation is abandoned, more precisely, the relation of the statement, or assertion, to the external state, or disposition, of things, the datum; and when the datum becomes the interiority of denotation, when the infinite multitude of singularities becomes the existence of substance, when the qualities of substance become the same as its finite states, or conditions, then there remains only one dimension: the dimension of expression. God is in relation exclusively with that which expresses him, with sense. God, immanent to things, staying, or remaining in them, produces things and thus complicates them. Things, inherent to God, staying and remaining in him, express God who complicates them. Every finite mode is the expression of God's infinite essence. "Whatsoever exists expresses God’s nature, or essence in a given conditioned manner, that is, whatsoever exists, expresses in a given conditioned manner God's power, which is the cause of all things, therefore an effect must necessarily follow" (E. I. Prop. XXXVI, Proof), so that complication could be complicated to infinity, so that God could affirm, to infinity, his power, or his existence.

But, expressions bring to light the sense that they express. Every "new" finite mode is one of  the infinitely many ways God can express himself, revealing, unveiling to himself, for he is in everything, that what was, until then, contained in him only potentially, inexpressingly, inexplicitly. That is why every expression is one possible explication of God, who remains implicit in things that explicate him. Or, differently, God, through complication, produces his own explication. By complicating all things, God is explicated through all things. Complication is his self-complication that tends to self-explication. God infinitely explains and interprets himself to himself, through his infinite reason. And this process of self-complication and self-explication is unfinishable, it is infinite, not only because God is infinite, but first of all because God is eternal, and because, in order to be eternal, he must eternally affirm his power, that is, he must produce finite modes, multiply his expressions, because he exists only on his expressions, only in finite modes, and because "the potentiality of non-existence is a negation of power, and contrariwise, the potentiality of existence is a power" (E. I. Prop. XI, Second Proof). Thus God's power of existence expresses itself through his power of affirmation. Therefore, affirmation is the procedure which requires God’s strength, because, affirmation, constant assent, constant assenting, means also constant complicating (in contrast to negation which posits constant simplifying, always new pauses, always and again transmitted weakness, 'negation of power,' the striving, endeavoring of the finite to the simple). And since everything that is created is the outcome of God's self-affirmation, since every finite mode is the expression of God's self-affirmation, and since God is in everything that expresses itself about him, or simply, in everything, because everything expresses itself about him, then everything that is created, every expression has itself to be affirmative and has to affirm further complications. In the complicated universe negation does not exist; in complication everything is built of affirmations. That is why it is complicated.

God is expressionist, and he situates, posits the world as infinite expression. But, that the universe is transmitted as one gigantic, never ending expression of simultaneously existent and different, even mutually contradictory expressions, that does not mean that this universe is "chaosmos." For "chaosmos," though it has as its principle the pergency of simultaneously affirmed series of singularities, nonetheless 'knows' of only one aleatory point which is impersonal and indifferent, and which appears as "quasi-cause," more precisely, as pure superficial senselessness. This "aleatory point which circulates throughout singularities, and emits them as pre-inpidual and impersonal, does not allow God to subsist. It does not tolerate the subsistence of God as an original inpiduality' nor the world as an element of the self and as God's product."9 The expressive world of God-complicator is the world in which God produces and expresses finite modes not as pre-inpidual singularities, but as inpiduals whose infinite set falls into one with the substance of his own infinite inpiduality. Therefore, in the acting of God-complicator it is never a matter of the production of one chaos according to a diabolical principle which undermines the inpiduality of created nature, and thence also of the nature that creates, but it is always and only the matter of the production of expression which is the expression of forms of the numerically one absolute. "Expression here appears as the relation of form and absolute: each form expresses, explicates or unfolds the absolute, but the absolute contains or 'complicates' an infinity of forms."10 God reveals, unfolds, unveils, explicates himself by expressing himself through an infinite multitude of different forms. The constant process of formation, de-formation and re-formation, the process in which every form is the effect that shall be the cause of another form that shall be the cause of another form, makes of the world a complicated fabric of forms which are the expression of the forms of all forms, of the form which contains in itself all forms, of the form which could be formed only by the conjoining of an infinite multitude of forms into one form, and which shall, therefore, never be formed, because infinity is without finiteness, it is unfinishable, formless. And yet, the amorphousness of this formless "super" and "sub" form of all forms is not something that would disable God to persist in his pine deformation as the principle of every possible formation. For if every finite form is the expression of infinite God's substance, which remains implicit in its expression, then all possible, different expressions are connected, conjoined by their common principle of production which they explicate. In other words: "expression appears as the unity of the multiple, as the complication of the multiple and as the explication of the One."11 In this way expression appears as the principle which maintains the One because it expresses it, through explicating it, and as the principle which, in order to explicate, has to complicate into a multitude that which is explicated, in order to explicate the explications which should be explicated further on, because the infinite reason of the complicator is "amazed" by each of its new explications, because it finds out that, despite that until now it worked on explication, in it there still remains infinitely many forms that ought to be complicated in order to be able to self-explicate itself in self-expression. The sources of God’s infinite essence are never sufficiently explicated, and God, in absolute joy, because he is the total and not partial cause of his expressions, produces from these sources qualitatively different expressions of his one and only essence: bodies, animate and inanimate, and all of their modifications, all of their colors and sounds, odors, flavors and touches, all of their sufferings and actings, all of their affections, and minds, and all of their modifications, all of their ideas, and all of their affects: joy and grief, admiration and scorn, love and hate, favor and disgust, devotion and mockery, hope and fear, reliability and despair, cheerfulness and bad conscience, disappointment and pity, inclination and complaint, overrating and underestimating, envy and compassion, content with oneself and depression, repentance and arrogance, faintheartedness and humility, glory and shame, yearning and competition, gratitude and kindness, anger and vindictiveness, cruelty and timidness, courage and fearfulness, astonishment and lust, and all other sorts of things, which finite human reason cannot gain knowledge of, about which it cannot form an idea. For, God's expressions, finite modes, can seize grom God only that what God gave them, in the attribute of extension and in the attribute of thinking, and produce, through acting, which is also an expression of pine power, other expressions. "At an unknown hour, from a source that is still sealed to us, but inexorably, the Work comes into the world. Cold calculation, splashes leaping up without plan, mathematically accurate construction (laid bare or concealed), silent, screaming drawing, scrupulous finish, color in fanfares or played pianissimo on the strings, large, serene, cradling, fragmented planes. Isn’t that Form? Aren't those the Means? Suffering, seeking, tormented souls with a deep fissure, caused by the collision of the spiritual with the material. The Found. The life of living and 'dead' nature. The consolation in the phenomena of the world, the external and the inner. Intimations of joy. The calling. Mystery speaking through mysteries. Isn’t that meaning? Isn’t that the conscious or unconscious purpose of the compulsive urge to create?".12 This "Found," this is the unity of spiritual and material, the identity of the causes of all modes of attributes of corporeality, the body-ness, and attributes of thinking, attributes of thought, which appear, as different, only if the place from which they are observed is taken into consideration, and which, this unity, this identity, leads, from suffering, from torture, produced by the collision of mind and body, to 'intimacy of joy,' which is active and powerful, which manifests itself in always novel sudden explosions of expression, in new expressions, in formations of new finite modes. The totality of this expression as explicated, remains hidden to finite modes. Every finite mode, as the expression of infinite substance, is but a mere figure of its expression, only one (finite) way of its explication, and so remaining only its implication. God keeps the secret about himself, he announces the absolute truth about himself only to his infinite reason. And exactly because of the infinity of this expression of the infinite reason which understands itself infinitely because it is infinite itself, the affirmation will always produce new affirmation: Yes will always and forever produce only new Yes, always new expansions, never compressions and simplifications, pauses and intermissions of negation. For, Spinoza's God is not Descartes’ and Kafka’s bureaucratic God, who wears tie and tends towards simplification in absolute negation. Spinoza's God is absolutely powerful, therefore, absolutely joyous, and his joy is infinite. Since he does not know of suffering, he does not know of negation, either.

Affect of reflection

The earth suffocates. Everybody hates earthquakes. They pray God to spare them of such great misfortunes. I want earthquakes, because I know the earth can breath. People don’t know what earthquakes are, and they accuse God. People shall say I’m wrong, but I know I feel the earth. I do not think about that. This earth is alive. Once earth was the sun. There are no people on Mars. People shall be afraid of me because I speak of things I never saw, but I can see without eyes. I feel.
Vaslav Nijinski, Dairies

Fritz Lang, according to his own testimony, sat for days before he would start shooting, in an empty studio, watching the space. Of course, the scenography, the entire set, was carefully planned, the angles of shooting and camera positions prepared in advance, but these plans, however they might be precise, never were a sufficient reason to shoot according to them. Every motion of the camera has to have its strictly determined reason, but this strictness, the determination of the motion raised to the level of truth, therefore, to changelessness, had to be offered not by the geometricized plan of movements, and arrangements of angles, but by the space itself. The space was that which was supposed to set up the way in which it must be watched if it is to be known. Fritz Lang, therefore, sat in an empty space waiting for the walls of studio to start to speak. Because walls speak, just like everything speaks, both that which is alive and that which is not; walls are, for example, an entire world, in which lines are contrasted, lines of walls, of cracks, light and dark lines which are formed by the light, lines of shadows and contours formed by the motion of light rays. Walls are, therefore, one "furrowed world," a changeable and unstable sequence of light and shadows, a mobile series of dispositions of contours, continuous re-formation and de-formation of the formed and the unformed. But, walls are not an organism. The walls which establish the "organic" totality, the unity in multitude, are not the issue here, but at issue is their motion which announces the break-up with the organism, with organic compositions, their changeability and instability which refers to the life of inorganic, to the life of things which are inanimate, therefore, to one life which breaks the limits of organic, spreading over everything that exists, and which, through this, through this expansion, does not become organic, but becomes alive, becomes animate, becomes inanimate which is animate, alive. "From this point of view, natural substances and artificial creations, candelabras and trees, turbine and sun are no longer any different," not, of course, in the sense that we could claim that candelabras are the same as trees, but in the sense that we can claim that both turbine and the sun are submitted to unstable order of gradation of changes, that both the wall and the eye suffer and produce motions which are not in accordance with their "organic" contours, just as they are not in accordance with mechanical or geometrical determinations of the left and the right, the horizontal and the vertical, but move according to the "logic" of gothic line, the line which "forms no contour by which form and background might be distinguished," but which enables the slightest changes in the "fabric" of things to be distinguished, of things animate and inanimate, and which, in this way, opens the space for reading their surface, their depth which erupts onto the surface, their interiority which ruptures into exteriority, their hidden-ness which outbursts into the revealed-ness, their invisible-ness which becomes visible. If one can at all talk about the geometry of this motion, then it is a geometry which does not know coordinates, and which does not know of metrical relations. This is because this motion does not unfold between extensive, measurable, and extended magnitudes, but between non-extensive, intensive qualities of things through which things transform themselves, suffering or producing motions of other things, and because things, through these motions, justify, or explain themselves, letting be seen what they encompass in themselves. Therefore, it is not the mechanical motion that is opposed to the principles of the organic, it is not the force of that which is inanimate which is opposed to that what is animate. "It is the vital as potent pre-organic germinality, common to the animate and the inanimate, to a matter which raises itself to the point of life, and to a life which spreads itself through all matter."13 Exactly this spreading of the vital through matter, also the one which hadn't raised itself to the animate, makes all "things" expressive, makes Nature, also the nature which is lost in the darkness of the invisible, to be expressive. Due to this motion of the vital, the entire world becomes self-expressive. This is the basic principle of expressionism: everything expresses itself. About itself. Everything is self-expressive. This is also Lang's basic principle. It is not that the expressionist should produce the expressions of animate and inanimate, should try to express what doesn't express itself, it is that the expressionist should fix, for a moment, one, or more, of countless many expressions of things, animate as well as inanimate, which is continuously expressive, whose self-expressions are in constant transformation and continuous gradation, and afterwards, to conjoin these expressions. To install, to edit, into one expressive totality the dreadfulness of the white animate wall that expresses itself, the expressions of movable surfaces of furniture, the expressions of the body placed between the classifications of these expressions. "I've used expressionism; I wanted to direct it... If you try to express the expressionism through formula, you will discover that it is the complete reflection of reality. Look at the paintings of expressionists and you'll have the impression of the explosion of colors and forms,"14 the impression of the explosion of expressions. Expressionism is, therefore, a complete reflection of reality, because the reality is expressive. But, "reflection" here does not mean representation. "Reflection" is the expression of some expression, here it denotes an expression which expresses the élan vital of things, and which comes out to the "surface" of things like a decorative line which does not represent the change, but is the change itself, which does not represent forms and contours, but simply breaks them. Therefore, the expression of expression is the expression that should express "the animal" which "has lost the organic," "the matter" which "has gained life"15 remaining inorganic. Such is the expression Lang waited for in an empty studio. He waited for the space to start to move, to bring into light what is hidden in it, to express that what it encompasses, to explicate what it implicates. His expressionism is Spinozistic.

For, Spinozistic expressionism implies one "chain" of expression through which the nature that creates expresses itself through its essences, and these infinite attributes express themselves through infinite modes. From the infinite mode of first degree, from motion and rest, there emerges, through one infinite modification of this infinite modification, an infinite mode of second degree, facies totius universi, the physiognomy of entire universe, the face of created nature, which, as any other face, changes in infinitely many ways. Created nature has a physiognomy, has a face, not because it represents figures and contours, limits which are the effect of God’s acting, but because it is the modification of the infinite modification of rest and motion, because, therefore, it modifies motions, because it appears to be the infinite sequence of motions whose direction and velocity change, which are combined in different ways, thus changing the expressions of this face. The face of nature, therefore, is not a face which enables the establishing of the form of subjectivity through situating itself as locus which enfolds, or encloses, the motions of thoughts and passions, prehended within one line that closes itself within itself, describing eyes, lips, nose, whose motions are signs of thoughts and passions, signs that should be read correctly so that the truth of thoughts or passions be occupied. Here "the expression" of the face is a representation, an "image" made through convention, which does not look like that what it represents, just as words do not look like that what they denote, although they enable thought or talk about what they denote. This kind of face is Cartesian. It "constitutes the wall of the signifier, the frame or screen. The face digs the hole that subjectification needs in order to break through"16 from the interiority of subjectivity, and to inscribe itself on the face, to impress its meanings on the inanimate surface of the face-wall, on the screen which emits that which there, in hidden interiority, is happening. Face is an immobile surface that reflects mobile interiority. Face is deprived of its own autonomous moves, it remains forever under the domination of thoughts that are the only ones that move. Face is immobile, it itself does not change, it does not speak itself, subjectivity speaks on it about itself; it is an unchangeable plane over which changeable thoughts and passions glide. It is an inanimate, eternal face. It is "mute and without becoming, in a certain way, eternal." That is why the Cartesian mute face is not Spinozistic. The physiognomy of created nature, the face of the entire universe is postulated exactly as an anti-Cartesian face, as a faceless, impersonal face, as an animate, universal face. We are now in Beckett's third zone.

The first zone that Beckett distinguishes is Cartesian, the zone of light, of geometricizing reason. In this zone elements of physical experience are abstracted into geometrical forms, and every physical existence is at the disposal of new geometrical arrangements, until the complete disappearance of all [that is] physical. This zone implies that the subject, finally, can be set, or postulated, as a "closed system, which is not subordinated to any principle of change except to its own, [which is] self-sufficient and impermeable to changeabilities of body." This is the zone of pure contemplation, of "pure forms without parallels."

The second zone is Leibnizian, the zone of half-light, of pre-established harmony. There the forms are "with parallel," in which the actions of body and mind are preestablished: "Here the kick that the physical Murphy received, the mental Murphy gave."17 This is the zone of half light exactly because the one and the same kick, or stroke, can move, can be moved, in two different directions.

The third zone is Spinozistic, the zone of darkness. In this zone, "the third, the dark, was a flux of forms, a perpetual coming together and falling asunder of forms."18 But the conjoining (coming together) and separating (falling asunder) of forms does not mean for Spinoza anything other than the conjunction of inpiduals into some new inpidual, or separating inpiduals into some new inpiduals, since it is exactly the form that constitutes the inpiduality of an inpidual. Coming together, conjoining, and falling asunder, separation, the constant change of infinitely many inpiduals, is the effect exactly of the perpetual acting of the infinite mode of the first degree, therefore, of rest and motion, whose different velocities have as their effect the constant change of the "formed." Of course, this change does not prehend only the body, or only the mind, by prehending the body it prehends the mind, the mind continuously changes with every change of body, thus enabling the knowledge of infinite changes of body, and, therefore, of its own changes. These "changes occur because other bodies act upon our body," says Spinoza, and, of course, because our body acts upon other bodies, and so the notion of created nature is to be understood only in the way that it is created as that which creates itself perpetually and over again, which changes itself infinitely. Here the createdness of nature does not mean unchangeability, but precisely changeability; createdness means the createdness of constant changing, constant formation and deformation of forms. One form distorts itself, thus becoming a different form, deforms itself, pours into another form, and this one, again, through the constant acting of other bodies, changes, and there emerges a new form. The everlasting production of forms, that is, inpiduals, becoming of one inpidual the other inpidual; in other words, the constant transformation of an inpidual on the most complex level which is called nature. The physiognomy of the entire universe, the face of created nature, is such that its features constantly change, but these features do not change on some "reflecting surface" that would constitute an unchangeable substratum of nature, but the change of features is the change of the entire face, the change of nature itself, the complete change of its physiognomy, aroused by microchanges of physiognomies of finite modes. Everything happens as with the wall in Lang’s studio. For, it is not the wall which is the unchangeable surface on which the change of the relationship of light and shadows unfolds, but the wall itself is already the "furrowed world" that changes its appearance. Physiognomy of entire universe only means that the universe always has some physiognomy, always has some face, although always having some other faces. Its features go out of the contours in which they were situated, constituting one appearance of the face, and conjoin themselves in a new way, constituting a new contour, a different face. Therefore it would be more precise to speak, not of the face or physiognomy of the universe, but of the continuous facialization of the entire universe, in so far as facialization implies the constant change provoked by continuous micromotions – the expressions. Continuous facialization of the universe therefore would mean the constant change of the expressions of the face of the universe, with an addition, namely, that the change of the expression of the face is at the same time the change of the face itself, which might fall into a complete facelessness if forms would deform themselves and if in extension there would remain a mere rest and motion; then "no particular thing could be shown or exist in the whole of extension."19

The process of constant facialization of the universe unfolds through constant facialization of finite modes, through formation and deformation of the form of finite mode, through change of the proportion of rest and motion of finite mode that is the body. For, "human body, therefore, is nothing else than a certain proportion of motion and rest."20 The change of this proportion occurs through the "stroke" of another body, "this change occurs because other bodies act upon our body," this change occurs because the body is being affected. The condition of possibility of facialization is, therefore, that one body is affected by another body, or other bodies, in the way that the "intensity" of this affecting "actually changes the form of the body." This means that the physiognomy of universe is changed through the change of the physiognomy of finite modes under the attribute of extension. Change of face of the body produces the change of the face of the universe.

Of course, because the idea that constitutes the formal being of the mind is the idea of the body, every change of body, produced by affection, produces not only the change of the idea in the mind, but also the change of the mind itself, because the idea of the body constitutes the formal being of the mind. Change of the mind is the effect of the change of the body, but it is the effect which is simultaneous with its cause, because these changes must occur at the same time, not only because of parallelism of modes in attributes, but also because of the self-identity of the cause of infinite attributes. If the change of body is the condition of possibility of the change of mind, then, on its part, this change of mind is the condition of possibility of knowledge about the change of body. Mind is that which knows about the change of body, because only mind has the consciousness of its own change which is always the effect of the change of body, because mind has the consciousness of itself, has the idea about itself, the idea about the idea, because, in this way, it knows that its formal being, the formal being of its idea, is the idea of the body, because it knows that the formal being of an idea is nothing other than its existence in the attribute of thinking, and that it knows also, from there, that the change of body causes the change of the idea. In one word, mind is condition of possibility of knowledge about the change of body because it knows itself, because it is self-reflexive, and because, through this self-prehension, it prehends that it can prehend itself and get to know itself only if it perceives the ideas of the affections of body. "This change which occurs because other bodies act upon our body, would not take place, if soul, which changes continuously all the time, would not be conscious of this change."21

It would be wrong to believe that self-reflection represents the problem for Spinoza's proposition about the parallelism of finite modes in infinite attributes. It would be wrong to believe that; due to this parallelism, due to identity of order and connection of ideas and the order and connection of things, the idea can always and only be the idea of body, but never the idea about the idea, because this would disturb parallelism, and because the collapse of the idea that infinite and infinitely many attributes represent the expressions of one and the only substance would come forth. The erroneousness of this belief lies in the fact that the possibility of the existence of reflexive ideas never refutes, absolutely does not refute, Spinoza’s proposition that the idea which constitutes the formal being of human mind is the idea of its body, but it refutes the conception (which after all is not Spinoza's) that the reflexive idea is the idea which, as its ideatum, has an other idea, different from itself. For, the reflexive idea is not determined in such a way that it, as its object, has the idea, but that it is the form of an idea: "Strictly speaking, the idea of the mind, that is, the idea of an idea, is nothing but the distinctive quality (forma) of the idea in so far as it is conceived as a mode of thought without reference to the object; if a man knows anything, he, by that very fact, knows that he knows it, and at the same time knows that he knows that he knows it, and so on to infinity" (E, II, Prop. XXI, Note).

First, on the ground of this Note, it is clear that the reflexive idea, the form of an idea, can exist only if and when someone knows something. Knowledge is only that which is obtained as certain, therefore, as true, in so far as every true idea, if it is true, contains within itself the "highest certainty." The reflexive idea, the idea of the idea, that is, the form of the idea, exists, therefore, only if this idea is true. Only true ideas have form. There is no form of false idea; then the difference between false and true idea would be lost. But, the form of an idea, the idea of idea, is simultaneous with (true) idea, because true idea is obtained through (adequate) understanding of one thing, "and who, I ask, can know that he understands anything, unless he do not first understand it? In other words, who can know that he is sure of a thing, unless he be first sure of that thing? Further, what can there be more clear, and more certain, than a true idea as a standard of truth? Even as light displays both itself and darkness, so is truth a standard both of itself and of falsity" (E, II, Prop. XLIII, Note). Truth looks for itself exactly in the moment in which it found itself, or, finds itself; it does not search for itself afterwards, after it has found itself, it does not search for itself through the act of reflection, through which it would prehend itself as already found and thus make certain of its own truth, of its own truthfulness, but the act of reflection is a "sign" of true idea which is the sign of itself ' index sui. Reflexive idea and true idea thus fall into one; they are simultaneous, and appear as two expressions of one and the same idea - in other words, they appear as the way in which we sense, or feel, the formal essence of idea, the reflection, and as the objective essence of the idea, the truth. It is understandable by itself that between the formal essence of the idea and its objective essence, although they relate to two different powers, to power of existence and power of thinking, there can exist only rational difference (vernunftige Defferenz), because both are contained in the same attribute, that of thinking, and because they appear as, or turn out to be, its different expressions. "[T]hat is, there is no real distinction between the idea and the affect itself or the idea of bodily affection, in truth, save in conception only" (E, IV. Prop. VIII, Proof). Or, rational difference between formal and objective essence of the idea in truth appears as the absence of this difference, as their identity - as true idea. "Hence, again, it is clear that no one can know the nature of the highest certainty, unless he possesses an adequate idea, or the objective essence of a thing; certainty is identical with such objective essence."22 Therefore, every true idea is a reflexive idea, and vice versa; so therefore, in order to know, it is not necessary to know that one knows, but is, also, impossible to know that one does not know that one knows. Reflexive idea thus appears as the form and as the formal reality of the idea which as finite mode exists in the attribute of thinking, and whose ideatum, object, content, is always some condition, some state, or a change of state of finite mode of the attribute of extension - the body.

But, from the fact that body and its states are the object of the idea that constitutes human mind (E, II, Prop. XIII) there does not follow that every idea is affection. Which does not mean that every true idea is not an affect.

It is correct that affection denotes the condition, or the state of one body or the change of its condition, or the state. Affections on our body point to the presence of another body, to trails which other body has left in our body, to the change of physiognomy of one finite mode, and, therefore, to the change of the face of the universe, to one explication through which infinite God’s essence is explicated, thus producing new complications. Affection lasts as long as a certain condition lasts, disappears with the change of that condition, disappears when the sign on our body, which was left there by the other body, is effaced, disappears with the inscription of new sign, with the appearance of new affection, with the presence of an other body. Thereof affection points to the presence of the body external to our body, of the body whose action produced affection. The idea of this bodily affection in the mind is the affect, the sense. The idea of bodily affection is the way in which the mind represents to itself the condition of its body, and, much more unclear, the condition, or the state, of the external body. The idea of this bodily affection is representation.. An affect is representation. An affect is an image of the condition of the body constituted for the mind, an image that stands for an affection in the mind. "Representation is the idea, by which the mind regards a thing as present, but which indicates the disposition of the human body rather than the nature of the external thing. An affect is therefore a representation, in so far as it indicates the disposition of the body" (E, IV, Prop. IX, Proof). This means that the affect as representation, or representative idea of affection, is exactly essentially the same as the affection itself, in so far as affect and affection are modes of different attributes and in so far as different attributes are only ways in which one and the same substance is, differently, expressed.

But, although it is a representation, affect cannot be reduced to representation. Apart from the fact that it is the representation of affection, the affect is also a non-representational idea ' it is also a sentience of the change of the disposition, or condition, or state, of the body, it is a sentience of the change of the affection, a sentience of the transference from one disposition, or condition, to another, from greater to less perfection, from less to greater perfection, but is always, and this is of crucial importance, a force through which the mind affirms, or confirms, the change of this disposition. And when there is an increase of the amount of suffering, therefore, a transference to less perfection, the affect is that which affirms the reduction of perfection. Most simply: the affect is then the very power through which mind confirms, through which it affirms the change, the transference, the transformation of the body. Wherefore, "the affect is the idea whereby the mind affirms of its body a greater or less force of existing than before" (E, IV, Prop. XIV, Proof). Understood in this way, the affect is the mode of thinking through which conatus is determined through idea. But, in neither case (determination of the affect as the representation of affection and determination of the affect as determination of conatus through idea and affirmation of its change), can we say that the reflexive idea is an affect.

For, every true idea, and therefore every reflexive idea, is the knowledge of some thing. This means, every true idea is the understanding of some thing. "For to have a true idea is only another expression for knowing a thing perfectly, or as well as possible. No one, indeed, can doubt of this, unless he thinks that an idea is something lifeless, like a picture on a panel, and not a mode of thinking - namely, the very act of understanding" (E, II, Prop. XLIII, Note). After all, precisely because it is understanding, the true idea is a sign of itself, its own form. That the idea is understanding, however, does not mean that the idea is action, and it is so because understanding is not action but suffering. To understand a thing means to endure it, understanding is endurance.. But, if understanding is endurance, then it is, like every endurance, the endurance of that which acts. And even more, if understanding is suffering, then what acts is that which has no power of understanding. Active, or acting things are those that do not understand (themselves), and understanding is that what suffers their acting in order to understand them. Understanding, or true idea, is simple and pure perception, or, as Spinoza says, an awareness, of acting of things. "For we have said that the understanding is purely passive; it is an awareness, in the soul, of the essence of things, so that it is never me who affirm or deny something of a thing, but it is the thing itself that affirms or denies, in us, something of itself."23 Things act upon our body, or things act upon other things, and to understand this acting, that does not mean to represent the affection, just as it does not mean to determine the conatus either, the change of affection, transference from one affection to another (from joy to grief, or conversely), but it does mean to sense the very acting of things. Thing is the cause of that which is affirmed or denied about it, because this affirming or denying is the sentience, the perception, of the way in which thing affirms or denies something about itself, more precisely, the sentience, the sense, of the way in which thing moves. Understanding has surrendered, that is, yielded itself to the motion of things, it does not interpret things, it does not represent them, but lets itself sense this motion, lets itself endure a certain "harder or easier" acting of the object. That is why every idea, every understanding - if it is understanding, that is, if it implies to let things act in ourselves and to suffer this acting is true understanding. Falsehood arises when understanding decides not to understand anymore, when it decides not to suffer anymore, but only to become active. To falsehood are inclined mostly feeble minds who do not have enough strength to be passive, enough strength to endure the acting of an object, however much it acts and of whatever kind were the outcomes of this acting, who do not affirm the complication and try to close themselves to it, who do not have enough power to endure the acting of an object until the object itself suspends, or stops, its acting, so that they could only then have a true perception of the totality of the object, therefore, of its essence; but, since they’ve perceived only a small part of the object, since they’ve suffered only a little and insufficiently, they, on the ground of this part, they imagine the totality of the object, on the ground of traits, of attributes, they imagine the essence, they imagine the trait, the characteristic, as the essence, part as totality. "... Falsity arising thus, namely, because, when we happen to know something or a part of an object, we imagine that the object (although we only know very little of it) nevertheless affirms or denies that of itself as a whole; this takes place mostly in feeble souls, which receive very easily a mode or an idea through a slight action of the object, make no further affirmation or denial apart from this."24 This happens mostly in those minds who cannot stand the openness, but close themselves into the falsity that they themselves can affirm or deny something, close themselves into the falsity that they can close themselves by their own will, not knowing that will "does not exist in nature," that it is not ens reale, that it is "only a fiction", or, if it is not a fiction, that it falls into one with reason, and that, because of that, it must suffer, in an openness for external causes, the very acting of these causes.

This happens mostly in those minds that are so feeble that they do not have the strength of affirmation, but in suffering mingle affirmation and assention. They understand suffering as something to which one assents because one cannot escape it, and not because one must sense it, so that only from this sensitivity and as this sensitivity, one prehends, or grasps, the truth. Thus, enduring suffering brings only grief, and because of that the impossibility of understanding that which one does not endure. That is why feeble minds are inclined to this kind of suffering, they are the only ones who do not notice that to assent to suffering means to assent to the work of the negative, to mere and pure endurance of weakness and grief.. They do not perceive that understanding, as suffering, as the sentiency of that which is understood, means the affirmation of that which is suffered, in so far as suffering is not only the passive situation of a body, or a mind, which expects that that which is suffered simply disappears, but is the activity of one body or one mind that open themselves for suffering, that become suffering, and themselves do everything so that suffering does not end, so that what is suffered is understood. "But in spite of the endless sadness of the world… it seems to me that life, that miracle of sensitivity and lucidity, has to be lived to the end, without dismay and with some kind of confidence. One slips so easy from reasonable and released affirmation of everything which is impossible, or is inevitable on some day, to endurance which is too much deprived of resistance."25

Strong minds, those who understand, and who, because of that, have true ideas, suffer the acting of external things, and affirm this suffering precisely by the very understanding of things, by the very sentience of things, by a true idea of a thing. They are the only ones that possess the truth, because they have, in the middle of an openness, brought to them by the suffering of understanding, assenting to affirm what things affirm or deny about themselves through their motion by which they change the face of the world, obtained an absolutely adequate sentiency of things... They have opened themselves to sense things, no matter what they have sensed, and in turn they acquired the truth, namely, that the sense that they have is absolutely certain. "(W)e can never bring it so far, either by words or by any other means, that we should feel about the things differently from what we feel about them; that is impossible, and clearly so to all who have for once attended to their understanding itself apart from the use of words or other significant signs."26 Sense, or feeling, obtained through understanding; sense, or feeling, which is understanding, an affect which is an idea, necessarily is true, because it has not originated through the activity of mind, but through its passivity, through its absolute openness (and every activity would mean the closing of an openness or closing for openness), through its affirmation of the motion of the body, through its sensitivity to the motion of the body. That we cannot sense or feel things differently than we have sensed or felt them, it is clear to anyone who addresses, at least for once, his reason, because reason is the one that feels, that senses. And every sense, every feeling of reason is necessarily such as it is, precisely because it is the sense, the feeling of reason, of understanding, because this sense, this feeling, is the true idea, and because the true idea could not be different from what it is. On the condition that it is true.

The truth of an idea we know by the idea itself: it is the sign of itself. The truth of an idea that is not representation, which is sense, which is the affect, we know for the reason that it is formed, that it has form. For the reason that it is reflexive. The possibility of reflexivity, thus prehended, is grounded in the identity of the cause of infinite attributes and their finite expressions, wherefrom the insight that the human mind is the idea of its body, is, after all, produced. "It is clear that in man, because he had a beginning, there is to be found no other attribute than such as existed in Nature already before; and since he consists of such a body of which there must necessarily be an idea in the thinking thing, and the idea must necessarily be united with the body, therefore we assert without fear that his Soul is nothing else than this idea of his body in the thinking thing. And as this body has a motion and rest (which has its proportion determined, and is usually altered, through external objects), and as no alteration can take place in the object without occurring also immediately in the idea, the result is that people feel ("idea reflexiva")."27 Sense, the feeling of the change of the disposition, or condition, of one's own body is idea reflexiva, because sense is the way in which mind knows its own body, thus knowing itself, in so far as it is nothing else but the idea of its body in the attribute of thinking. Mind prehends itself as pure sensitivity, as successive sensations of its own body. Thus, understanding appears as the sensation, the feeling, of the body, true idea transmits itself in the figure of sensation; the self-reflexive idea of the mind gets the form of sensation of the body. The self-reflection of the mind is its self-sensation, its self-sensing, and its self-sensation is the sense, or sensation, or the feeling, of its body. To understand means to sense, or, to feel. To sense, to feel with body, therefore, with mind; in so far as the mind and the body are the same, observed under two different attributes. "I think little, and that is why I understand everything I feel. I feel with my body, and not with my intellect. I am body. I am the feeling. I am man and not God. I am simple. I do not need to think. I must force myself to feel and to understand' I am body, but I do not originate from the body' People think I'm mad and that my mind will break. Nietzsche's mind broke because he was thinking too much. I do not think, and that is why I cannot go mad. My skull is firm and resistive."28

It is clear from here that Tschirnhaus's remark completely neglects Spinoza's conception of reflexive ideas as feelings.29 Tschirnhaus claimed that on the ground of the proposition of the sameness of order and connection of ideas and things there follows that every thing has to be expressed in an infinite multitude of ways. So modifications of body and the mind connected with this body would be one and the same thing that only expresses itself differently in different attributes. But, Tschirnhaus claims that such modifications have to be simultaneously expressed in all remaining, infinitely many attributes too, if the substance is one and the same, and if it is expressed in infinitely many ways. There arises Tschirnhaus' problem with Spinoza's reflexive ideas. For, if such modifications are expressed in all other attributes too, why should human mind feel only those modifications which are expressed in the attribute of extension, why should not it feel also the modifications expressed in all other attributes? And why should it prehend itself as the feeling of the body? Why should reflexive ideas be the reflection/sentience of the body? Reflexive idea has to be the sense, the feeling, of the body and of nothing else but the body, and reflection has to be the feeling and nothing else but the feeling, because, and this is what Spinoza (in Letter 66) explains to Tschirnhaus, "although each particular thing be expressed in infinite ways in the infinite understanding of God, yet those infinite ideas, whereby it is expressed, cannot constitute one and the same mind of a particular thing, but infinite minds; seeing that each of these infinite ideas has no connection with the rest, as I have explained in the same note to Ethics, II, Prop. VII, and as is also evident from Ethics, I, Prop. X." In other words, Spinoza claims that although any attribute different from thinking and extension can be the object of thinking, more precisely, of God’s thinking, such an attribute, which is different from extension and its modifications, still never can be the object of thinking in human mind, because it does not constitute the mind. Human mind is constituted as the idea of its own body, and it can feel only modifications of that body. Not of any body, but precisely and only of its body, because only one's own body can be sensed or felt, because all other bodies can be sensed or felt only through sensing or feeling one's own body. Unity or sameness of mind and body is thus secured exactly through feeling. For, body is modified through affections, and the mind responds to those affections by sensing or feeling them. It responds affectively, empathycizing itself into its own body. Reflexive idea is, thus, an affective response of mind to that what is happening to its body, to everything that this body endures or suffers.

Thus the universe gets the appearance that changes through the motion and rest of sensations and feelings. The physiognomy of the universe is nothing other than the constant change of relations between motion and rest of sensations. And motion and rest are one immediate and infinite modification of infinite substance. They are the motion and rest of the substance itself. Everything unfolds as if the immanence transcends itself, encompassing in itself, subsequently and over again, this self-exceededness, which is always self-transformation. As if one immanent God, one almighty infiniteness, which is moving all the time, creates new forms with each of its moves, produces Beckettian fluxes of forms, inscribing new text, inscribing itself as new text, constantly changing its own face. This change is not the change of the expression of the face. It is not a smile on God's lips that are to become serious again - it is the transformation of the lips themselves. Maybe their disappearance.

Unconscious subject of consciousness

For Van Gogh had achieved a degree of enlightenedness in which thought withdraws itself in disorder in front of the penetrating voidances of the matters, and in which to think is no longer to deplete, and is no longer, and in which the only thing left is to collect bodies, I want to say, to agglomerate bodies.
Antonin Artaud

What we know, what we feel, we can announce in two ways. In both cases it is a matter of representation, of two ways of representation.

Through words, or "somehow otherwise," and by these or those reasons, we can announce to others about a thing "something other than that what we know about it," something other from what we feel about it. Then we lie. Then we pronounce either a false idea, or a fictive idea, in any case, we form one confused representation, representing either something which does not exist at all (like in the case of fictions), or something which exists but whose essence is not known or is deliberately suppressed (like in the case of a lie: for example, a corpse exists, but it is not true that corpse can think, so the expression "corpse thinks" is a confused representation).

Through words, or "somehow otherwise," we can make an attempt to announce what we feel about our body, the way we feel it. To announce, this means to represent, but pretension to true representation does not end necessarily in truth. It is always only the matter of an attempt, because representation unfolds through signs, through all that which does not explicate the essence of our body and its powers but refers to the presence of an other body and to its acting, so therefore the representation, although it can be true, does not have to be true, but when it is true, it never is adequate.

For, adequate is that which is in ourselves in the same way in which it is in God, the way it is in God. An adequate idea does not represent states (conditions, dispositions) of things, the presence of an other body, or everything that happens to our body. An adequate idea represents that which we are, the way we are. But, through one representation which does not imply the representation. Through one representation which shall not seek representation from the matter of an adequate idea, but the expression, which means an explication of itself and, therefore, the implication of the ideas of other bodies and the idea of God. So an adequate idea shall not be represented at all, since in that case it would be indispensable to posit some other idea which would have to have, as its content, the idea which it represents, and the form itself of an idea of this kind would have to be sought in establishing a consciousness that would have to have the power of synthesis and that would have to ensure the procedures of representation. An adequate idea is, therefore, its own expression, self-expression of true idea, the way in which one reflexive idea expresses itself, through explicating itself. An adequate idea is the expression of feeling, of reflection, not of affection. Affections are not represented through representation which itself is a bodily affection, the trace of an external body upon our body. The sign. But, adequate ideas are explained in one expression which simultaneously implicates not only ourselves, but also the idea which is its most immediate cause, through the modification of which it itself originates, and also through one indication of the complication which shall appear in the figure of the new adequate idea. If the notion, or concept of representation can at all be retained for the way in which adequate ideas operate, then it must be reformulated so that it means the expression of the order of things, of their order and connection, as well as the order and connection of reflexive ideas themselves. Thus every adequate idea is a point in an order of adequate ideas, whose forms cause each other, whose matters are produced by successive modifications of the finite mode of the attribute of extension, as well as by the order and connection of these modifications. "An adequate idea represents the thing appropriate to truth and order and connection of things only because it develops in the attribute of thinking an autonomous order of its form and autonomous connection of its matter."30 An autonomous order of adequate ideas is a necessary effect of the thesis of parallelism of the order and connection of finite modes in different attributes. This means that the finite mode of an attribute can have its efficient and formal cause only in the finite mode of that same attribute. Only a body and its acting can be the cause of the modifications that the affected body suffers, only one body can cause the existence of an other body (this does not apply to the existence of essences of finite modes, since they exist infinitely, in God). Also, only one idea can be the cause of the existence of an other idea (that the order and connection of ideas is the same as the order and connection of things, although only idea can cause the idea, and only thing can cause the thing, is due to the identity of the cause of these parallel series, therefore, to God), so that it is possible to reproduce the formality of nature from the autonomous order of adequate ideas. But, from an autonomous order of true ideas necessarily follows the automatic conjoining of their matter. For, an adequate idea, which is "the way in which we feel the formal essence" (Spinoza), is the idea which, in this way, the way of feeling "shows how and why something is or has been made; and that its subjective effects in the soul correspond to the actual reality of its object. This conclusion is identical with the saying of the ancients, that true {science} proceeds from cause to effect; though the ancients, so far as I know, never formed the conception, put forward here, that the soul acts according to fixed laws and is, as it were, an immaterial automaton."31 Adequate ideas are, in accordance to their own autonomous order concatenated, and this concatenation of ideas, which automatically, by themselves, conjoin themselves, is nothing else but the mind-automaton.

It becomes clear that mind is not constituted by protocols of self-prehension, of self-production, in which it would ground itself, it becomes clear that mind has no Cartesian reflexive structure: I see that I see, and moreover, and more important, it becomes clear that mind cannot prehend itself at all in self-mirroring, self-reflecting, because it does not mirror itself, it does not reflect itself, for its essence is not the idea which is the idea of it itself, but is the idea which is the idea of the body, as well as because it has no power of synthesis of adequate ideas of whose autonomous order it is constituted, because it has no power of synthesis of reflexive ideas, the feelings. Mind is not the power that would prehend itself in its own essence by itself. Nothing remained of Cartesian cogito, of the infinite self-production of pure thinking which is its own exclusive object and content. Nothing remained of the mind, understood as the substance that gathers Cartesian essential attributes and modes in the essence of itself, either. Mind became an automatic concatenation of reflexive ideas, a falling into one-ness, into simultaneity of form and "matter" of true ideas, and their succession, a pure machine-like motion of feelings. Pure machine-like motion of unsynthesized feelings. For, mind has no power of synthesis. Not only of active (synthesis) which would manifest itself in the figure of the force of gathering of these feelings into the property of one 'I', but of passive (synthesis) either, which would manifest itself in the passive, enduring substance of a Self through which, across which, a series of reflexive ideas would flow, or run, in their autonomous order. Mind-automaton is only concatenation of feelings, of reflexive ideas in the unity of their logical form and expressive content. Mind is a sequence of feelings that feel or sense the body. Nothing else. Nothing more.

It is clear that consciousness is not only pervaded with unconsciousness, but that it is drowned and saturated into unconsciousness. Consciousness is unconscious, exactly because it lacks self-consciousness, and because self-consciousness is the condition of possibility of consciousness. We have consciousness only about the idea that we have, of conditions on which we have it, and we always have only the idea about the body, about its state, or condition, and conditions upon which this state, or disposition, arose, therefore, about the acting of an other body upon our body. We do not have consciousness about that which associates our mind, we do not have consciousness about our existence in continuance, in duration, we do not have consciousness about ourselves at all. We only have consciousness about the ideas that express the acting of an external body upon our body, consciousness which is simultaneous with these ideas and which entirely exhausts itself within them and their succession. Subject is an unsynthetisized series of affects, the series of feelings, the sequence of unconscious reflections. Pure sensitivity.

Sensitivity to the bodily factory that produces an infinite multitude of different affections or is produced by them. An Artaudian subject whose consciousness is the concert of affects, complete openness for the "radiance and lustrousness" of the body. "For if there was no mind, nor the soul, nor the consciousness, nor thought, there were bursts, mature volcano, overstrained stone, patience, contagious furuncle, mature tumor, and the crust of the ripped one,"32 and a countless multitude of other modifications through which a body might go through, and everything else that the body can produce and do; and the body can do anything, body is capable of so much that no one ever found out yet what the body is capable of. And, also, this sensitivity, this openness of one unconscious reflection, is so much open that it succeeds in overcaming the abyss between ‘inside’ and ‘outside.’ Parallelism between finite modes of different attributes is no obstacle for it, for this sensitivity. For, this parallelism does not at all, and ever, mean an eternal separateness and untangleability of the idea and the body, it does not mean their mutual "trailing" at a safe distance, but, contrariwise, parallelism means the constant touching and intertwining of that which is parallel, in so far as these parallel sequences have identical cause, towards which they constantly move, which they constantly express. So this identical cause functions according to the principle of projective geometry of the 17th century, according to which parallel lines can touch themselves and intersect. In this way, there occurs one encroachment of exteriority into interiority, one intrusion of interiority into exteriority, their inconceivable intimacy. There occurs one schizophrenic state - "too-great proximity of everything", which touches interiority, making of it an exteriority. The sensitive subject no longer has "protective aura, not even the body envelops one". He is "open to all". ..."What characterizes him is less his light-years distance from the real, a radical break, than absolute proximity, the total instantaneousness of things, defenseless, with no retreat; end of interiority and intimacy, overexposure and transparency of the world that traverses him without his being able to interpose any barrier: For he can no longer produce the limits of his own being, and reflect himself," for he is simply a sequence of feelings, a sequence of expressions which, by explicating, complicate.


1. Gustav Janouch, Conversations with Kafka.
2. Elias Canetti, Kafka's other Trail: The Letters to Felice).
3. Gustav Renee Hocke, World as Labyrinth
4. Baruh de Spinoza, Ethics, R. H. M. Elwes' translation
5. Jean Baudrillard, Fatal strategies, New York, Semiotext(e) 1990, p. 23.
6. Gilles Deleuze, The Logic of Sense, New York 1990, p. 76.
7. Ibid., p. 77.
8. Ibid., p. 172.
9. Ibid., p. 176.
10. Gilles Deleuze, Expressionism in Philosophy: Spinoza, New York 1992, p. 119.
11. Ibid., p. 176.
12. Text of Wassily Kandinsky in the Catalogue for the second exhibition Neue Künstlervereinigung München. In: Wolf-Dieter Dube, The Expressionists, London 1985, p. 96.
13. Gilles Deleuze, Cinema I, Minneapolis 1986, p. 51.
14. Fritz Lang's interview for Cahiers du Cinema, no. 99. In: Lotte Eisner, Methods of work and style: first German period, Quorum, Zagreb 1990, p. 641.
15. Gilles Deleuze, Cinema I, Minneapolis 1986, p. 51.
16. Gilles Deleuze  /  Felix Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, London 1992, p. 168.
17. Samuel Beckett, Murphy, London 1963, p. 65.
18. Ibid., s. 118-119
19. Spinoza, Short Treatise on God, Man, and His Well-Being.
20. Ibid.
21. Ibid. s. 114.
22. Spinoza, On the Improvement of the Understanding.
23. See Note 19
24. Ibid., s. 84.
25. Marguerite Yourcenar in a letter to Jeanne Carayon, 19. 02. 1977. In: Josyane Savigneau, Marguerite Yourcenar, Die Erfindung eines Lebens, Frankfurt am Main 1997, S. 435.
26. See Note 19
27. Ibid., s. 118-119.
28. Vaslav Nijinski, Diaries
29. These reflexive ideas are not to be confused with common notions. For, the condition of possibility of formation of common notions is not the openness as such, but the absence of affects that are opposite to our nature. As long as we are pressed by affects of discontentment we have no possibilities to constitute common notions. Common notions presuppose that what is common to our body and to other body. However, Spinoza abandoned the conception of reflexive idea as the affect in Ethics. For, the affect as the reflexive idea implied that the truth is acquired through suffering. From Ethics the point is completely different: acting as joy is the condition of possibility of truth, and, according to this, the joy is the only and exclusive aim of moral living.
30. Gilles Deleuze, Spinoza, Praktische Philosophie, Berlin 1988, S. 107.
31. See Note 22
32. Jean Baudrillard, Fatal strategies, New York, Semiotext(e) 1990, p. 69-70.

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