News | Year: 2007

25 May 2007


Màlik Yimayama (not his real name) this month shocked and appalled the Greenwich scholarly community by not referring once to the “cybernetic paradigm” during the course of a three-hour position paper.
For this reason alone, Sphaleotas cannot sufficiently recommend the sureness and subtlety of this young scholar’s oeuvre, and therefore implores all readers to address the challenge it presents to their various research projects.

23 Apr 2007

For more information on the following seminars you can contact me at
incognitum.blog[AT]gmail.com
MACHINES ARE DIGGING: ON POROUS EARTH AND EMERGENCE
Cappadocian Complex
Goldsmiths, University of London
Department of Visual Cultures
Thursday 10 May 2007
Room: tba
UNDERCOVER SOFTNESS: POLITICS AND ARCHITECTURE OF DECAY
Decay and Softness
Goldsmiths, University of London
Center for Cultural Studies
Wednesday 9 May 2007
2-5pm, Room DTH109
To attend the seminar please contact Dr Luciana Parisi at l.parisi@gold.ac.uk

01 Mar 2007

Through its spatial and temporal approaches to God and Apocalypse, Islamic theology formulates a methodology for begetting a profoundly political tool which is capable of turning theology itself into heresy.

According to Islamic theology, although the Christian God is infinite and is posed as an outsider but its externality is not radical enough and is self-contradictory, for the gift of revelation or apocalypto cannot be given to Man if God is radically external to Man. A God radically and perpetually external to Man can never be revealed to Man either partially or fully, on the ontological or the epistemic plane. In short, radical externality exceeds affordance even if affordance is effectuated – on the levels of both possibility (posse) and actualization (est) – as an infinite capacity. Revelation is certainly the production of the outside but its epistemic infinity (revelation as the superiora of knowledge) is bound to the affordability of both its ends – the subject of generosity and the subject of receptivity. In Revelation, while the latter (Man?) cannot entirely liberate itself from capacity and merely shifts to a new capacity entailed by its ontological integrity, the former is only able to actualize its generosity by submitting to the capacity of the receiver. Otherwise, the infinity of the gift can only register itself in waste and ignorance of the other. This is why in terms of Revelation, outside is an environment rather than radical exteriority; it is an outside whose boundaries coincide – a continuum of different capacities.

Islamic theology, however, presents God as radically and unyieldingly external to Man. This externality can be approached as a technique which perforates theology, reinventing it as an epistemological tool for confronting a pure externality without reducing it to ontological possibilities or an object of Man’s openness – affordance. A thoroughly outside-oriented ethics without an anticipation of being communicated by Man, Islamic theology once again renders the Outside as the great abomination:

Once theology presents the Divine as the pure outside and the manifest refractory impossibility, the monotheistic God enters a crisis with cataclysmic proportions: its ontological possibilities are undermined and its unity can merely inflame its precarious relationship to many. When the radical outside (infinitely external) is posed in respect to the affordable outside (an outside with infinite potentials) as in the case of Islamic theology compared to other monotheistic strains, the affordable outside turns into an epistemic tool that certifies the innumerability of other infinities. Each of these infinities demonstrates their autonomous existence by a diagonal opposition to the present infinity. The result of applying such a technique to God is nothing but God turning into an ultimate heresy itself. Once a new set is extracted from a series of sets in a way that it can both include those sets and situates itself infinitely external to them – similar to Cantor’s diagonalization technique – or infinitely higher in dimension, it can produce infinite anomalies if its laws and qualities are applied to those constitutive sets. Not only can the infinitely external set spawn heresies as a constant Outsider but also it is posited for its constitutive sets (the subjects of its heresy) as an ultimate never-ending heresy.

Cantor’s diagonalization [1] is a method for unbinding radical outsides (more in terms of invoking rather than creating them). It indirectly propagates outsides by mapping the failure of a given infinity to contain elements of other infinities or outsides. Cantor’s method suggests that outside-engineering is exercised by building an external set which cannot be related to the existing set (even if it is an infinity itself) through a ‘one-to-one and onto’ (bijective) correspondence:

Let s be any set and let t be the power set of s. Now at this point, s maps into t and every x in s maps to the set containing x in t. But there is no bijection (injection / one-to-one + surjection / onto) mapping s onto t.

Suppose f is such a bijection and build a set w in a way that for every x in s, x is in w iff x is not in math1.gif. Now f maps s onto all of t, and w is a subset of t, so there is some x with math2.gif. Yet math3.gif iff math4.gif. Therefore, the correspondence is contradictory and cannot exist. The ontology of the existing set / infinity cannot contain other sets / infinities but at the same time is responsible for giving rise to them (their homecoming).

Diagonalization is a political tool for counteracting ontology and its existential opportunism.

Islamic Allah is posed to Christian God and other monotheistic manifestations of the Divine in the same vein; it exercises heresy on the Divine on behalf of the Outside and its refractory externality. In short, heresy as an outside-oriented praxis is always effectuated by re-positioning (re-mobilization and re-alignment). The new heretical set brings itself behind its subjects for the sake of both affirming and being infinitely external to them. Such a re-positioning results in being a heresy in itself and harvesting countless heretical possibilities from positions or alignments being held by other sets. This is why, all heresies adopt the notorious positioning of a tergo.

If God basks in his house, let us reconstruct it according to the laws of demons. (Collapse II)

[1] The controversies around Cantor’s method – on a statistical / probability level – deserve an exhaustive discussion.

01 Mar 2007

For more information on the following seminars you can contact me at
incognitum.blog[AT]gmail.com
MACHINES ARE DIGGING: ON POROUS EARTH AND EMERGENCE
Cappadocian Complex
Goldsmiths, University of London
Department of Visual Cultures
Thursday 10 May 2007
Room: tba
UNDERCOVER SOFTNESS: POLITICS AND ARCHITECTURE OF DECAY
Decay and Softness
Goldsmiths, University of London
Center for Cultural Studies
Wednesday 9 May 2007
2-5pm, Room DTH109
To attend the seminar please contact Dr Luciana Parisi at l.parisi@gold.ac.uk

15 Jan 2007
Inflection

The diagonal opposition of the minimum (Giordano Bruno’s fold-building which together with Nicholas Cusanus’s complicatio influenced Leibniz’s monadology) towards its environment (the afforded outside) that evades the logic of negativity at the same time that it defies submission and thus maintains constancy in opposition to its environment would not be indifference but inverse-difference to the environment. The minimum according to Bruno is not a world of the minimal but a world that registers itself in its surrounding as the minimum, or the maximum resistivity against what can economize it (or communicate with it according to the scale of the environing sphere or surrounding). The minimalist object is constantly prone to the maximalization of its environment as an outside ontologically existing only in what can be afforded by the object and what can afford the object. The minimum, however, undergoes building as a dissociation from its environment but not the outside by re-aligning its position as well as its ontological explicatio (development) to its environment instead of cutting from it or differentiating its minimum-ness from the all-encompassing measures (metron) of the environment. It is in the same way that Henri Michaux (Mr. Plume, Exorcisms and Night Moves) escapes the surrounding by building the minimum of the object or the universe (in the sense of Giordano Bruno’s the minimum) instead of directly overpowering the lines of gravity or through the line of escape, by undertaking the logic of the bullet, the projectile of infinite condensation and shells rather than perpetual dynamism.

If every object passes different types of forces, and generates its possibilities as well as actualization (posse / est) based on the affect space that these forces enmesh over and through it, modifying the type of forces and their designation would ensue a new reciprocation to the environment. The deployment of forces that define the totality, the context and the assemblage of the minimum, namely, what leads to an inflection or connection to the outside by inflexus, a point on a curve at which the tangent crosses the curve itself, creating a site of autonomous inwardness. Here, the twist or the inverse-difference from the affordability of the surrounding (the economical communication) is taken place by running the process of building through inflection, the event of endless inwardness, not interiorization. Inflection is an essential singularity near which, functions exhibit extreme behavior which neither manifests itself as a pole (polarity of functions or extremum) nor a removable singularity (contiguous to its primary function). The object of inflection is not of extremum (here or there, left or right, core or surface, forward or backward); it is external to the logic of coordinates, building a cavernous movement whose every turn is a point of return to the inside. Gravity (domination) is not at stake here because inflection deals with vectors of a curve which determinate the axes in oscillation around it, consequently, the object of inflection flees from weight (becomes weightless) not by escaping gravity through counterpoising it but becoming irrelevant to it. Inconclusively, inflection in the minimum realizes an autochthonic world where the formation of the building is from the place it is found or it originates, and vice versa. Cosmo-crafting itself according to an autonomous inwardness, the object as the building of inflection populates between dimensions (an inter-dimensional Xanadu) or it is without dimension, in either case, it is a self-contextual explosion along vortical bends. It existentially registers itself as an auto-event, installing the outside on the inside while closing inside upon the outside in an attempt to create a plenum external to its surrounding spatium. The self-context cosmology of inflection is the genetic element of an active object which cuts across the passivity of indifference and the reactionism of difference to generate an inverse-difference out of which outside is propagated infinitely and inwardly, creasing over and over – in the manner of wet-folding in origami – until producing a mass whose depth transforms to concrete thickness or concentrated fullness, a self-context which is not self-referential but autarkic by means of inflecting outside (reto-openness) rather than closure. The opposition of the minimum to the environment emerges from this retro-openness to the Outside, an outside that includes the surrounding (the environment) and what the environment cannot assimilate (the Outsider space), vorticity is the quality of this retro-openness and inward diffusion is its dynamism.

To this end, the process of bringing the materials together (orchestration) in the minimum is not of composition but is determined by squeezing, wrapping endlessly, creasing within and over creases, compressing into each other, shoving upward and downward, pressing out from the sides, staging all processes that bring together through the dynamics of forces risen between materials and masses, yield and stress, nonlinear elasticity and flow plasticity: an architectural forge-press.