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Leoncio y el deseo de ver // Léontios et le désir de voir // Leontius and the desire to see

Yo- De todas formas he escuchado algo que me invita a creerlo. Leoncio, el hijo de Aglaion, iba subiendo desde el Pireo por el muro exterior del lado norte cuando vio unos cadáveres depositados en una fosa común. Sintió al mismo tiempo el deseo de verlos y al mismo tiempo una repugnancia y el deseo de alejarse de allí. Luchó por un momento cubriéndose la cara con el abrigo, mas dominado finalmente por el deseo de ver,  abrió los ojos como platos y se acercó corriendo hasta los cadáveres diciendo: “ ¡Servíos vosotros mismos, demonios de perversión, y pegaos un atracón de las bellas vistas que se os ofrecen!”

gawking_1

Moi- D´ailleurs j´ai entendu une histoire qui me le ferait croire. Lèontios, le fils d´Aglaïon remontait du Pirée par le rempart exterieur côté nord. Il aperçut des cadavres déposés au charnier. Il eut en même temps le désir de regarder, et en même temps un mouvement de dégoût et de recul. Il lutta un moment, le manteau rabattu sur la tête. Mais dominé par son désir de voir, il écarquilla les yeux, courut jusqu´aux cadavres tout en disant: “Voilà, démons de perversión, jouissez pleinement de ce beau spectacle!”

le-desir-de-voir

Me- Anyhow, i´ve heard something that makes me believe it.Leontius, the son of Aglaion, was going up from the Piraeus along the outside of the North Wall when he saw some corpses lying at the executioners feet. He had an appetite to look at them but at the same time he was disgusted and turned away. For a time he struggled with himself and covered his face, but, finally overpowered by the appetite, he pushed his eyes wide open and rushed towards the corpses, saying, “Look for yourselves, you evil wretches, take your fill of the beautiful sight.”

The man of the strongbox // L´homme du coffre-fort 554

septiembre 11, 2016 Deja un comentario

Resultado de imagen de strongbox

Me– It´s pathetic, his only interest is money, he´s the man of the strongbox, gaining  the respect of the people. He is the type of man that corresponds to the oligarchic system, isn´t he?

Adimante– I think so. Both for the oligarchic city and for the man that lives therein money is the paramount issue.

Me-I don´t think that this man will care much about education.

Adimante– Certainly not, otherwise he wouldn´t go astray following the oligarch´s blindness. To that point he admires him.

Me– Indeed. But beware! The same desires as those which bumble-bees have, come along together with his lack of education and this man houses them.  Some, in the form of sheer beggary, others as desires to do harm. Only his trained awareness for security enables him to contain them.

Adimante– Exactly

……

Me– Thus, we can well gather what is at stake in the deals in which our oligarch engages, deals through which he gains reputation thanks to the appearance of justice. Our oligarch is an orderly person and he forces himself by dint of hard work in order to contain the pervert desires that he harbors. Yet he doesn´t arrive to talk some sense into these desires nor to calm them down through reasons, given that necessity and fear weigh on him triggered likely by the concern for the preservation of his wealth.

Adimante– Absolutely.

Me– But, for Christ´s sake, my dear friend, most of this type of people reveal themselves when it comes to public expenditure. At these moments you  catch sight of those bumble bees that haunt them: their desires.

Adimante-Definitely

Me– Such a man will certainly have to endure internal divisions: instead of one individual, he will be two. Still, one desire weighed against the other, let´s admit that in the case of this man the good ones will beat the wrong ones.

Adimante– Surely

Me– The oligarchic person has therefore a more presentable appearance than others. However as to the mental cohesion based on an internal harmony, he is far away from real excellence.

Adimante– I agree

Me– If brought to face a challenge against other members of the city, our knight of the savings will conduct himself in a stingy way, regardless of whether a victory or a noble ambition is at stake. Money will thwart every commitment on his side: neither glory nor competitions for glory will seem for him worth his money. He will be afraid to awake his spendthrift desires driven by belligerence or a desire for victories. His contributions to war will be meager given “the meager government” he represents, that is, the oligarch he is. He will come off worst but he´ll continue to be rich.

Jacques Cazeaux

The oligarch was formerly someone “keen on honour”. In him, therefore, the desire to shine and to win lies dormant. Stooped to the level of the inferior desire, the desire for money, and to a certain profligacy with respect to other people´s s goods,  he is caught in a manoeuvre of this last passion, which imitates generosity: under the pretence of glory… let´s go and spend… even our own money. The duality of this person risks turning against him, against even his “oligarchic” character itself. In a context of fight, emulation and eventually war the oligarchic individual is led to the ultimate vice of the oligarchic city: the disastrous parsimony in the war itself.

Resultado de imagen de coffre fort

Moi– En minable, il fait sur tout les bénéfices; il est l´homme du coffre-fort, comme ceux justement que le peuple considère. En tant qu´individu, il correspond au régime de l´oligarchie, n´est-ce pas?

Adimante– Je pense: c´est l´argent qui passe avant tout, dans la cité oligarchique comme chez notre homme.

Moi– Je ne crois pas que l´éducation l´ait bien préoccupé.

Adimante– Non, sans doute. Sinon, ce ne serait pas l´Aveugle qui mènerait le branle du fait de notre oligarche. Il l´estime tellement.

Moi– Très bien. Mais attention: comme des bourdons, les désirs ont accompagné en lui le manqué d´éducaction. Nous devons dire qu´ils l´habitent, les uns en simples mendiants, les autres en malfaiteurs, simplement contenus par les vigiles musclés don’t dispose en fonction d´autres impératifs une bonne surveillance.

Adimante– Certes.

Moi– On voit bien par là ce qu´il en est dans les autres engagements de notre oligarche, où il y gagne l´estime par une apparence de justice. Il est rangé; il prend sur lui pour contenir gentiment à la force du poignet les autres désirs pervers qui l´habitent. Mais il n´arrive pas à leur faire croire qu´il n´ y a pas mieux à faire , ni a les calmer par raison: c´est la nécessité et la peur qui agissent, car sa fortune, au demeurant, lui donne assez d´angoisses.

Adimante– Bien sûr.

Moi– Mais, grande Dieu, cher ami, la plupart des ges de ce modèle se révéleront dans les dépenses publiques: tu pourras alors voir ces bourdons qui les hantent-à savoir leurs désirs.

Adimante– Et là, pour de bon.

Moi– Bien entendu, un tel être connaîtra les divisions intestines: au lieu d´un individu, il será doublé. Mais, désirs contre désirs, mettons que chez lui la victoire aille aux bons et que les mauvais soient battus.

Adimante– Cela arrive

Moi– Alors, le personnage oligarchique será plus presentable que tant d´autres. Mais, s´il est vrai qu´elle est due à la cohesion mentale, fruit d´une harmonie bien établie interieurement, l´excellence veritable restera fort éloignée de lui.

Adimante– Je le crois

Moi– s´il faut relever un défi avec des particuliers de sa ville, notre chevalier de l´ épargne sera plutôt chiche, qu´il s´agisse d´une victoire ou d´une belle ambition. Son argent le retiendra: la gloire et les jouets glorieuses  ne valent pas qu´il le dépense. Il aura peur que le désir de la dépense précisément ne se réveille et ne vienne à la rescousse de la pugnacité et du gout des victoires. C´est avec peu de chose de son apport personnel qu´il fait la guerre, en bon “gouvernement du peu” qu´il est, en bon oligarche. Le plus souvent il a le dessous, mais il est riche…

Jacques Cazeaux

L´oligarche est un ancien “ami de l´honneur”. En lui sommeille la volonté de briller, de vaincre, donc. Ravalé au pouvoir du désir inférieur , du désir de l´argent, couplé á une certaine prodigalité des biens d´autrui, il est exposé á une manoeuvre de cette dernière passion, qui imite la largesse: sous couleur de gloire… dépensons…même notre propre bien. La dualité du personnage risque de se rétourner contre lui, contre son caractère même “ oligarchique”. Le contexte de lutte, d´émulation et finalement de guerre conduit l´individu oligarchique au dernier vice de la cité oligarchique, la parcimonie désastreuse dans la guerre elle-même.

The rotation ( Plato´s “Republic” 519) // La rotation ( “La République” de Platon 519)

septiembre 9, 2016 Deja un comentario

Resultado de imagen de turn-around

Me– However our discussion suggests that this faculty (knowledge) is already in every individual soul. And this organ, which enables us to learn, is much like the eye, incapable of turning towards brightness from darkness without the support of the whole body; the entire soul accompanies also this inner organ, abandoning the passing world thanks to a sort of rotation that makes accessible everything that exists and shines in the brightest light , which now the soul is capable of bearing. We are talking about  Good, aren´t we?

Glaucon– Yes

Me– Yet, in order for this turn-around to be easy and effective it´s necessary to be skilful in making the rotation. It´s not a question of letting in the sense of sight since this is, albeit askew, already at work in the individual that possesses it. Handiness is needed.

Glaucon– Absolutely

Me– As to the other perfections, the so-called virtues of the soul, they may indeed be like those of the body. If they are missing at the beginning, they can be introduced by means of regular exercise. But the faculty of knowledge belongs, apparently, to a godly reality whose essential activity never perishes: depending on the rotation, it may end up being helpful and useful or useless and harmful. You must have noticed the existence of mischievous people that are, for that matter, pretty smart. The piercing sight of their souls follows straightaway the direction signaled by their perversions. Precisely because it´s not a question of short-sightedness, the better they see , the more harm they do.

Resultado de imagen de retournement

Moi– Mais notre discussion suggère bien que cette faculté (la connaissance) se trouve déjà en toute âme individuelle. Et cet organe par où chacun réussit à apprendre ressemble à l´oeil, incapable sans l´accompagnement du corps tout entière de se tourner vers la clarté à partir d´un monde obscure; l´âme toute entière accompagne aussi cet organe interieur, en laissant le monde du devenir pour opèrer une sorte de rotation , jusqu´au moment où ce qui a l´existence et même ce qui y brille de la plus grande clarté lui seront accesibles, et qu´elle pourra désormais en supporter la vision- Il s´agit por nous du Bien, n´est-ce pas?

Glaucon– Oui

Moi-Or, c´est là qu´il faut un art de la rotation qui donne facilité et efficacité à ce retournement. Il ne s´agit pas d´introduire le sens de la vue; il faut, puisque l´individu l´a déjà, mais qu´il est simplement orienté de travers et qu´il ne regarde pas la bonne direction, il faut avoir le coup de main.

Glaucon-Évidemment.

Moi– Sans doute les autres perfectionnements intérieurs qu´on peut ainsi designer ont-ils de chances d´être en assez proche parallèle avec les perfectionnements physiques: certes, s´ils font défaut à l´origine, on peut les introduire en pregnant le pli à coup d´exercices. Mais la faculté de réflexion appartient á une réalité autrement divine, de toute évidence, dont l´activité essentielle ne déperit jamais: seulement, la rotation envisagée la rendra utile, interessante- et inutile, tout aussi bien, voire nuisible. Tu l´as remarqué, on entend parler d´individus mailfaisants, mais fort avisés, du reste. Leur semblant d´âme possède un regard aceré, une vue perçante portant dans la direction qui est ce qu´elle est: ce n´est pas que leur sens de la vue soit indigent, mais il est contraint à l´esclavage de la perversion, et, en fin de compte, mieux on y voit, et plus grand est le mal qu´on fait concrètement

Categorías:English, French, Platón

Alan Posener´s “The rebellion of the laggards” // “Der Aufstand der Abgehängten” von Alan Posener

https://beta.welt.de/debatte/kommentare/article157234454/Dem-Westen-droht-ein-Aufstand-der-Abgehaengten.html

Resultado de imagen de michael dunlop young

The western world is threatened by a rebellion of the laggards. He, who can´t keep pace in systems based on skill and achievement, turns sooner or later against their elites. Donald Trump is the leader of a Revolution against the International of the Privileged.

We can´t say that we weren´t previously warned. More than 50 years ago the British sociologist Michael Dunlop Young already predicted today´s rebellion against the elites- though placing it  in 2034. Young titled his essay “ The rise of the Meritocracy”

In his view the allotment of life chances based exclusively on “merit”- that is, intelligence and skill- would lead to the empowerment of a self-righteous elite whose rule would be unbearable precisely because of the good conscience with which it is exercised.

The new class- contrary to previous forms of rule- would be demonstrably more intelligent and skilled than the lower class. Yet the laggards would hold a weapon against the top performers: Democracy

According to Young, our meritocratic society is the first one that, thanks to compulsory schooling- and indeed to comprehensive and integrated schools- brings home to each individual the place he occupies in a hierarchy built on skills and achievement. He, who, despite all the pedagogical tact and aid programs, misses the required standards, is confronted  on a daily basis during his childhood and youth with the evidence that he belongs to the low ranks.

Not because he lacks a noble or bourgeois origin, nor because his mother tongue or his gender, his religion or race are things that can be held against him but because he lacks the intelligence or the skills that, following Hollywood, politicians and educators, are the keys that will open the world of his  dreams or  have demonstrably done so in the case of other individuals. Every story of social climbing tells him: it´s your own fault if you keep on staying in the low ranks.

This discouraging insight affects specially those who can´t produce any excuse for their failure, those who are not migrants, nor blacks, nor disabled, nor women. These groups possess a history of discrimination and can make their claim for assistance and “affirmative action”.

White men of  lower class increasingly unable to draw their sense of identity from their class consciousness or affiliation to a union or a party or from the solidarity of their working mates in the neighborhood: these are the vanguard of the revolution against the top performers. They vote for Donald Trump.

They voted for Brexit. They march against immigration. Not because of any failure attributable to the elites but because the elite´s program targets the failure of the masses. How else could the elite justify its existence as elite?

It is not without irony that a man like Thilo Sarrazin* has become the hero of the anti-meritocrats given that Sarrazin is, in fact, the ideologue of the top performers. “Germany abolishes itself” and it does so because women in academia and in management don´t bear enough children so that the gens of smart people are unable to prevail against the gens of  lazy individuals,  morons or the “little maids with headscarf from Anatolia”.

Thilo Sarrazin (born 12 February 1945) is a German politician (SPD), writer, and former member of the Executive Board of the Deutsche Bundesbank (until 30 September 2010). He previously served as senator of finance for the State of Berlin from January 2002 until April 2009, when he was appointed to his position at Bundesbank.
He became well-known worldwide after making controversial remarks on Jewish genetics, leading to a media frenzy resulting in his resignation from the Executive Board.
In his 2010 book “Deutschland schafft sich ab” (“Germany abolishes itself”), the best selling book on politics by a German-language author in a decade, he denounces the failure of Germany´s ‘s post-war immigration policy, sparking a nationwide controversy about the costs and benefits of multiculturalism.

The fact is that today  people in academia tend to marry other people in academia, people in management other people in management, in short, achievers marry other achievers. They come to know each other in college or in the work place, they send their children to private nurseries and schools while they dodge public schools, in which a few number of the pupils will be recruited to become part of the new class whereas the majority will have to cope with the fact that unfortunately there´s no spare capacity for them. The meritocracy will result in this way in an aristocracy, justified not by ancestry but by IQ.

While top performers think and act in international terms, foster free trade and free movement of persons, conceive immigration as an opportunity- also the opportunity to be recruited into the new class- and welcome technical progress because it increases the value of their own skills, laggards want to return to hierarchy: us against them.

 “Americanism, not Globalism” as Donald Trump proclaims. Natives against “ alien territories and cultures”, as Alexander Gauland* dubbs the Boateng family. Westeners against muslims. Real men against gays. “Goody-goodies” against emancipated women. Families against singles. “Values” against intelligence.

Alexander E. Gauland (born 20 February 1941 in Chemnitz) is a German lawyer, journalist and politician. Gauland is a leading politician of the national conservative AFD as its co-founder, its federal spokesman and as the party leader for the state of Brandenburg.

Feelings against  judgements of “experts”, these latter being regular targets  of Boris Johnson´s ,the Brexit-advocator, attacks. Real work against big commercial banks, who Nigel Farage, the UKIP leader, estigmatised  as being the most eager  champions of the British permanency in the EU.

In the war fought against “McWorld”, against the uniform world of business lounges and luxury hotels, against commercial towers and villas in smart neighborhoods, where the achievers  enjoy their lifestyle,  Jihadists emerge in muslim societies and populists in the western.

If some in the islamic world resent the mere existence of the western world or of a State such as Israel, some in the western World feel equally sore about the existence of meritocracy.

Both, islamists and populists, seek refuge  in an  imaginary world  of a better past, in  fantasies of  superiority, into hate-filled conspiracy theories, in order to hide themselves from the fact that they won´t  be able to survive in a world of achievers.

A society that conveys to the majority or even a large minority of its members the sentiment that they don´t belong to it, can´t certainly exist for long. Only a few years ago European advocators of meritocracy used to repeat like a mantra that America was allegedly a country where inequality was not only accepted but welcome.

Today there is Donald Trump leading a crusade on behalf of the “forgotten men and women of America”. Only a few years ago Tony Blair used the term “Meritocracy” to characterize his vision of a new Great Britain and Europe. Today Theresa May promises “ a Great Britain from which everybody can benefit” not just the rich  and the handsome , the smart and the clever.

And while the president of the EU commission Jean Claude Juncker says that he coudn´t care less about who signs the free trade agreement with Canada, provided that it becomes effective, Angela Merkel has recognized the signs of the times and demanded the national parliaments to have a say in the agreement.

Since the laggards have nothing else to count upon except the fact that they build the majority. In their hands democracy can turn into a dangerous weapon. They have driven Great Britain swiftly out of the EU. They have bring to a halt the political process in many European countries. Meritocracy is not functioning any longer.

Yet we don´t know what can replace it. Nobody can seriously believe in a return to the regulated Nation-State of the 70´s where every worker was guaranteed a job that allowed him to feed his family. The world of work doesn´t function in this way any longer, robots having replaced workers on conveyor-belts and computers, secretaries.

Nor does a world, in which  China and India pose a challenge to  western supremacy, function any longer in that way. In those countries a ruthless selection is implemented that fosters the emergence of a meritocracy capable already of filling the top manager positions in many western companies. It´s perhaps not by chance that China is not a democracy and that the cast system reigns in India .

In order not to turn democracy, our most important achievement, against us, we should rethink its foundation. And this foundation is the school. It´s time to reconsider the criteria according to which we judge school success. Not only maths and german are important , nor only computer literacy and IQ. Music and art, cook and crafts, football and boxing, social work and gardening should be just as important.

School failure must be a thing of the past. At the same time, given that obviously knowledge is power, much more must be done to foster intellectual faculties in early childhood both at day nurseries and schools.

Additionally the new aristocracy must be regarded critically. Social envy is appalling, but still more are inherited privileges.  The fact that skills stood somewhere at the beginning of these privileges is one thing, another that there now exist blatant inequalities that have nothing to do with those skills.

Skills must regain their value and our concept of what they are should change . Only when meritocracy changes itself, can the society based on it be rescued. We have time until 2034.

caras

 

Nemesis (extract from the book by Wolf Lepenies “The Power in the Mediterranean”) // “Nemesis“ ( Auszug aus dem Buch von Wolf Lepenies “Die Macht am Mittelmeer”)

“The history of the first International”, writes Camus, “in which the German socialism ceaselessly fought the liberal thought of the French, Spaniards and Italians, is the history of the fights between the German ideology and the Mediterranean spirit”. It is about the confrontation between balance and hubris that has determined western history since ancient times, a confrontation along which the Community and the State, the concrete and the absolute Society, the reflective freedom and the rational tyranny and eventually the altruistic individualism and the colonization of the masses had  opposed each other-Nature vs. History. The German ideology, posits Camus, accomplished twenty centuries of a vain fight against nature in the name , firstly, of an historic God and then of a history of Salvation.

Camus resorts to his examination paper on Plotinus and Saint Augustine when he says that Christianity was only able to lead to Catholicism by appropriating to itself as much Greek thought as possible. Thereupon the Church wasted its Mediterranean heritage giving preference to History  over Nature, allowing the Gothic to win the Romanesque and claiming , exceeding a limit that it had originally imposed on herself, a temporal power and a historical dynamic . Nature ceased to be an object of contemplation and admiration to become an object subjected to an action meant to transform it. A suicidal strategy that eventually led to the expulsion of God from History and to the German ideology carrying out actions that were nothing but conquests and tyranny. Yet this “poor victory” was only provisional and the fight goes on. Europe has always been in the midst of a fight  between midday and midnight (midi et minuit)

Its decline began as Europe gave up striking the balance between them and the day was sacrificed for the sake of the night. Still there remains hope, the “pensée solaire” (“solar thought”) will show its undiminished strength and Europe will restore the balance between excess , which never wholly extinguishes, and temperance. The Europe of the 20th century, the Europe of the great murderous ideologies lost itself in excess. Still, temperance stands at the core of Greek thought, embodied in Nemesis that, like Camus often highlighted, is not precisely the goddess of revenge and retaliation, but the goddess of equlibrium. Camus, who divided his own work in cycles that he named after the Greek mythology, planned a last Nemesis cycle after those  of Sysiphus and Prometheus.

“Die Geschichte der ersten Inernationale”, schrieb Camus, “in welcher der deutsche Sozialismus unaufhörlich gegen das freiheitliche Denken der Franzosen, Spanier und Italiener kämpfte, ist die Geschichte der Kämpfe zwischen der deutschen Ideologie und dem mittelmeerischen Geiste” Es ging um die Konfrontation zwischen MaB und UnmaB, die seit der Antik die Geschichte des Westens bestimmte, in der sich die Gemeinde und der Staat, die konkrete und die absolutistische Gesellschaft, die reflektierte Freiheit und die rationale Tyrannei und schliesslich der altruistische Individualismus und die Kolonisierung der Massen gegenüberstanden- Natur vs. Geschichte. In der deutschen Ideologie, postulierte Camus, vollendeten sich zwanzig Jahrhunderte eines vergeblichen Kampfes gegen die Natur im Namen zunächst eines geschichtlichen Gottes und dann einer Heilsgeschichte.

Camus griff auf seine Examensarbeit über Plotin und Augustinus zurück, wenn er davon sprach, das Christentum habe seine Katholizität nur dadurch gewinnen können, dass es sich so viel wie möglich von griechischen Denken aneignete. Dann aber verspielte die Kirche ihr mediterranes Erbe, gab der Geschichte gegenüber der Natur den Vorzug, lieB das Gotische über das Romische triumphieren und beanspruchte, indem sie eine ursprünglich selbstgesetzte Grenze überschritt, immer mehr eine zeitliche Macht und eine historische Dynamik. Die Natur hörte auf, ein Gegenstand der Kontemplation und der Bewunderung zu sein, und wurde nur noch zum Gegenstand einer Handlung, die sie zu transformieren versuchte. Eine selbstmörderische  Strategie, die schliesslich dazu führte, dass Gott aus der Geschichte verstoBen wurde und die deutsche Ideologie in Handlungen mündete, die nichts als reine Erorberungen waren, Tyrannei. Dieser “arme Sieg” aber war nur vorläufig, der Kampf ging weiter. Immer hatte Europa im Kampf zwischen midi und Mitternacht (midi et minuit) gestanden.

Sein Abstieg begann , als es die Balance zwischen beiden aufgab und den Tag der Nacht opferte. Hoffnung aber blieb, die “pensée solaire” würde ihre unverminderte Kraft beweisen und Europa wieder die notwendige Balance zwischen der MaBlosigkeit, die sich nicht ganz überwinden lässt, und dem MaB geben.Das Europa des 20. Jahrhunderts, das Europa der groBen, mörderischen Ideologien, hatte sich in MaBlosigkeit verloren. MaB aber stand im Zentrum des griechischen Denkens, verkörpert durch Nemesis, die eben nicht, wie Camus oft erhob, die Göttin der Rache oder Vergeltung, sondern die Göttin des MaBes ist. Camus, der seine eigenen Werke in Zyklen einteilte, die er nach Gestalten der griechischen Mythologie bennante, plante nach den Sisyphos und Prometheus- Zyklen zuletzt einen Nemesis-Zyklus.

 

“The Skeptic doesn´t go beyond the standpoint of Understanding and this will make him fail.” (extract from Alexandre Kojève´s Work “Introduction to the reading of Hegel”) P 63 // “Le Sceptique ne dépasse pas le point de vue de l´Entendement, du Selbstbewusstsein. C´est ce qui fera son échec.” P 63

The negation of the Skeptic is purely theoretical (a polemic against science). It implies “nihilism”, which can be realized theoretically. The Self can be thought without thinking the external world: therefore the latter can be destroyed without destroying oneself- at least through and by thought. Stoicism, let it be reminded, is the attitude of the Slave that works but doesn´t fight. It´s about thought (born out of work) not about effective action or fight against the Master. The critic of the Skeptic will destroy Understanding. Yet Skepticism is at the same time the radical assertion of Understanding´s abstract dualism: Man opposes the World like Being opposes Emptiness. For Hegel, Man is something other than the World (Nature)

Inasmuch as he is action (that is, void that voids the given being of Nature and negates it through fight and work realizing itself through and by this negation) Man differs radically from the external natural world. But obviously his activity has only human value as long as it´s thought, conscious (which it can only be in so far as it truly negates). There are incidentally different degrees of conscience: Sensation, Perception, Understanding, Reason ). The skeptical attitude is only made possible by the existence of the Slave (the action of his work): yet it´s necessary that the Stoic thinks out this existence in order for it to be truly human. And, as human, it is firstly the existence of the Skeptic- Nihilist.

The thought of the Stoic is in the things (Nature, Science). It couldn´t negate these things. It couldn´t negate these things without destroying itself. The thought of the Skeptic, on the contrary, turned towards itself, can negate these things. It thinks out just one real thing and this thing is human: It´s the work (of the Slave)

Here Hegel writes: Denken = Infinity. It´s the “bad infinity”, that of mathematics. Every number there is equivalent to zero. The thought of the Skeptic is infinite because it negates every determination. For Hegel, Man is not what he is but what he can be through the negation of what he is. Herein the Negativity of Man is revealed by the Skeptic. It´s in this way that the idea of freedom penetrates philosophy. Yet the Skeptic can not negate his own given nature, that is, his servile position in the Master´s world- by taking an action in this world, that is, by fighting against the Master in view of acknowledgement. Herein the negation is still theoretical, mental.

The Skeptic doesn´t go beyond the standpoint of Understanding and this will make him fail.

La négation du Sceptique est purement théorique (une polemique contre la science). Elle implique le “nihilisme” que l´on peut réaliser théoriquement. On peut penser le Moi sans penser le monde extérieur: on peut donc détruire celui-ci sans se détruire soi-même- du moins dans et par la pensée. Le Stoïcisme , rappelons-le, c´est l´attitude de l´Esclave, qui travaille mais ne lutte pas. Il s´agit donc de pensée ( née du travail), non d´action effective, de lutte contre le Maître. Le Verstand será détruit par la critique sceptique. Mais le Scepticisme est en même temps l´affirmation radicale du dualisme abstrait du Verstand: l´Homme s´y oppose au Monde comme l´être au néant. Pour Hegel, l´Homme est effectivement “autre chose” que le Monde (Nature).

Il diffère radicalement du monde extérieur naturel, dans la mesure où il est action ( c´est-à-dire si l´on veut: néant qui néantit dans l´être donné de la Nature, en le niant par la lutte et le travail et en se réalisant dans et par cette négation). Mais naturellement son activité n´a de valeur humaine qu´en tant qu´elle est pensée, consciente ( ce qu´elle n´est qu´en tant que vraiment négatrice). Il y a d´ailleurs des dégres de conscience: Sensation, Perception, Entendement, Raison.) L´attitude sceptique n´est posible que par l´existence de l´Esclave (l´action de son travail): mais il faut que le Stoïque ait pensé cette existence, pour qu´elle soit vraiment humaine. Et en tant qu´humaine, elle est, d´abord, celle du Sceptique-Nihiliste.

La pensé du Stoïque est dans les choses (Nature, Science). Elle ne pourrait nier ces choses. Elle ne pourrait nier ces choses sans se détruire elle même. La pensé du Sceptique, par contre, qui est tournée vers elle-même, peut nier ces choses. Elle pensé une seule chose réelle; et cette chose est humaine, c´est en fait le travail ( de l´Esclave).

Ici Hegel écrit: Denken = Infini. C´est le “mauvais infini”, celui des mathématiques. Tout nombre y est équivalent à zéro. La pensée du Sceptique est “infinie” parce qu´elle nie toute détermination. Pour Hegel, l´Homme n´est pas seulement ce qu´il est, mais ce qu´il peut être, en niant ce qu´il est. La Négativité de l´Homme est ici révelée par le Sceptique. Et c´est ainsi que l´idée de liberté pénètre dans la philosophie. Seulement le Sceptique ne peut nier effectivement sa propre nature donnée, c´est-à-dire sa place servile dans le monde du Maître-par une action dans ce monde, c´est-à-dire par une lutte contre le Maître en vue de la reconnaissance. Ici, la négation est toujours théorique, mentale.

Le Sceptique ne dépasse pas le point de vue de l´Entendement, du Selbstbewusstsein. C´est ce qui fera son échec.

“Don´t be what you are, be the opposite of what you are” (extract from Alexandre Kojève´s Work “Introduction to the reading of Hegel”) P 65 // “ Ne sois pas ce que tu es, sois le contraire de ce que tu es” ( extrait de l´oeuvre d´Alexandre Kojève “Introduction à la lecture de Hegel”) P 65

Understanding considers objects isolated from each other, isolated from everything surrounding them, irrespectively of the subject. It considers, thus, “abstract objects”. This is the approach of “vulgar”, official” science. It´s also the approach of the Stoic, who isolates himself from external reality and withdraws into himself. It´s likewise the approach of the theological morality based on definitive data ( moral judgements are like objects  that are isolated from -and -imposed on Man). (Aristotelian) idea of the innate natures (of Master and Slave). Ancient morality: Man has to realize an “ideal”(given, eternal) within the material world: Become what you are. According to Hegel, this ancient morality is false, because Man doesn´t have an eternal, immutable, “nature”, given once and for all. The Sceptic denies the very principle of the heathen morality ( still sensualist): he´s already beyond paganism, he prepares the coming of Judeo-Christianity.

A Hegelian morality could have another commandment: Don´t be what you are, be the opposite of what you are (Transform yourself, become a “new” Man). There is no moral philosophy in Hegel (He is hostile towards moralists); just a philosophy of morality. Sole axiom: the individual has to live according to the mores and customs of his people ( as long as the  mores of this people correspond to the “Zeitgeist”, that is to say, as long as they are solid, resistant to revolutionary attacks and critics). Otherwise, the individual perishes as a criminal or a madman. The Sceptic is already conscious of himself as opposed to Nature: he has the subjective certainty of his freedom, that is, of his non-natural existence.

The Sceptic reveals fully the Negativity of action.

That which makes up its anthropogenic value is the fact that action is the negation of the given, of Nature, of the “innate character”.  Action lies at the root: Man is action.

L´entendement envisage les objets isolés les uns des autres, isolés de leur entourage et indépendamment du sujet, donc des objets “abstraits”. C´est l´attitude de la Science “vulgaire”, officille”; c´est aussi celle du Stoïque, qui s´isole de la réalité extérieure et s´enferme en lui-même, et c´est également celle de la morale théologique, qui se base sur des données définitives ( les jugements moraux sont comme des objets isolés de l´homme et imposés à l´homme). Idée (aristotélicienne) des natures innées ( du Maître et de l´Esclave). Morale Antique: l´homme doit réaliser un “idéal” (donné, éternel) dans la matière: Deviens ce que tu es. Cette morale antique est fausse, d´après Hegel, car l´homme n´a pas de “nature” éternelle, immuable, donnée une fois pour toutes. Le Sceptique nie le principe même de la morale païenne de l´Entendement (encore sensualiste): il dépasse déjà le paganisme, il prépare l´avènement du judéo-christianisme.

La morale hégélienne pourrait avoir un autre commandement: Ne sois pas ce que tu es, sois le contraire de ce que tu es. (Convertis-toi: deviens un homme “nouveau”). Il n´y a pas de philosophie morale de Hegel ( qui est hostile aux moralistes); seulement une philosophie de la morale. Seul axiome: l´individu doit vivre conformement aux moeurs et aux coutumes du peuple dans lequel il vit ( tant que les moeurs de ce peuple corresponden t au Zeitgeist, c´est –à-dire tant qu´elles sont “solides”, resistent aux critiques et aux attaques révolutionnaires). Sinon il perit: comme criminel ou fou. Le Sceptique a déjà conscience de soi en tant qu´Homme opposé à la Nature: il a la certitude subjective (Gewissheit) de sa liberté, c´est-à-dire de son existence non-naturelle.

Le Sceptique révèle pleinement la Negativité de l´action.

Ce qui fait la valeur anthropogène de l´action, c´est qu´elle est négation du donné, de la Nature, du “caractère inné”. La base, c´est l´action: l´Homme est action