Monday, December 24, 2012

Wagering on the Double Zero - Actus et Potentia. Cathexis v Anti-Cathexis

The philosophy of Pascal's Wager uses the following logic (excerpts from Pensées, part III, §233):

1) "God is, or He is not"
2) A Game is being played... where heads or tails will turn up.
3) According to reason, you can defend either of the propositions.
4) You must wager. (It's not optional.)
5) Let us weigh the gain and the loss in wagering that God is. Let us estimate these two chances. If you gain, you gain all; if you lose, you lose nothing.
6) Wager, then, without hesitation that He is. (...) There is here an infinity of an infinitely happy life to gain, a chance of gain against a finite number of chances of loss, and what you stake is finite. And so our proposition is of infinite force, when there is the finite to stake in a game where there are equal risks of gain and of loss, and the infinite to gain.

Now Double negative elimination is a theorem of classical logic, but not of weaker logics such as intuitionistic logic and minimal logic. Because of their constructive flavor, a statement such as "It's not the case that it's not raining" is weaker than "It's raining." The latter requires a proof of rain, whereas the former merely requires a proof that rain would not be contradictory. (This distinction also arises in natural language in the form of litotes.) Double negation introduction is a theorem of both intuitionistic logic and minimal logic, as is \neg \neg \neg A \vdash \neg A .

But what does this mean: Ariadne abandoned by Theseus? It means that the combination of the negative will with the force of reaction, of the spirit of reaction with the reactive soul, is not nihilism’s last word. The moment arrives when the will to negation breaks its alliance with the forces of reaction, abandons them and even turns against them. Ariadne hangs herself, Ariadne wants to perish. Now this fundamental moment (“midnight”) heralds a double transmutation, as if completed nihilism gave way to its opposite: reactive forces, themselves denied, become active; negation is converted and becomes the thunderclap of a pure affirmation, the polemical and ludic mode of a will that affirms and enters into the service of an excess of life. Nihilism “defeated by itself.” Our aim is not to analyze this transmutation of nihilism, this double conversion, but simply to see how the myth of Ariadne expresses it. Abandoned by Theseus, Ariadne senses the approach of Dionysus. Dionysus the Bull is pure and multiple affirmation, the true affirmation, the affirmative will; he bears nothing, unburdens himself completely, makes everything that lives lighter. He is able to do what the higher man cannot: to laugh, play, and dance, in other words, to affirm. He is the Light One who does not recognize himself in man, especially not in the higher man or sublime hero, but only in the overman, in the overhero, in something other than man. It was necessary that Ariadne be abandoned by Theseus: “For this is the soul’s secret: only when the hero has abandoned her is she approached in a dream by the overhero.” Under the caress of Dionysus, the soul becomes active. She was so heavy with Theseus but becomes lighter with Dionysus, unburdened, delicate, elevated to the sky. She learns that what she formerly thought to be an activity was only an enterprise of revenge, mistrust, and surveillance (the thread), the reaction of the bad conscience and ressentiment; and more profoundly, what she believed to be an affirmation was only a travesty, a manifestation of heaviness, a way of believing oneself strong because one bears and assumes”
- Deleuze, (Essays Critical and Clinical, p. 102)
“To pass from Theseus to Dionysus is, for Ariadne, a clinical matter, a question of health and healing. And for Dionysus as well. Dionysus needs Ariadne. Dionysus is pure affirmation; Ariadne is the Anima, affirmation divided in two, the “yes” that responds to “yes.” But, divided in two [dedoublee], affirmation returns to Dionysus as the affirmation that redoubles [redouble]. It is in this sense that the eternal return is the product of the union of Dionysus and Ariadne. As long as Dionysus is alone, he still fears the thought of the Eternal Return, because he is afraid that it brings back reactive forces, the enterprise of denying life, the little man (whether higher or sublime). But when Dionysian affirmation finds its full development in Ariadne, Dionysus in turn learns something new: that the thought of the Eternal Return is consoling, and at the same time, that the Eternal Return itself is selective. The Eternal Return does not occur without a transmutation. The Eternal Return, as the being of becoming, is the product of a double affirmation that only makes what affirms itself return, and only makes what is active become. Neither reactive forces nor the will to deny will return: they are eliminated by the transmutation, by the Eternal Return as selection. Ariadne has forgotten Theseus; he is no longer even a bad memory. Theseus will never come back. The Eternal Return is active and affirmative: it is the union of Dionysus and Ariadne”
(Deleuze,"Essays Critical and Clinical", p. 105).

Sunday, December 23, 2012

With a Hat-tip to Nicrap!

Claudio Monteverdi (1567–1643)
Lamento d’Arianna
Lasciatemi morire.
E chi volete voi
che mi conforte
in così dura sorte,
in così gran martire?
Lasciatemi morire.

O Teseo, o Teseo mio,
si che mio ti vo’ dir
che mio pur sei,
benchè t’involi, ahi crudo,
a gl’occhi miei.
Volgiti Teseo mio,
volgiti Teseo, o Dio,
volgiti indietro a rimirar colei
che lasciato ha per te la Patria e’l regno,
e in queste arene ancora,
cibo di fere dispietate e crude
lascierà l’ossa ignude.
O Teseo, o Teseo mio,
se tu sapessi, o Dio,
se tu sapessi, oimè,
come s’affanna
la povera Arianna;
Forse, forse pentito
rivolgeresti ancor la prora al lito.
Ma con l’aure serene
tu te ne vai felice, ed io qui piango.
A te prepara Atene
liete pompe superbe, ed io rimango,
cibo di fere in solitarie arene.
Te l’uno e l’altro tuo vecchio parente
stringeran lieti, ed io più non vedrovvi,
o Madre, o Padre mio.

Dove, dov’ è la fede
che tanto mi giuravi?
Così nell’ alta fede
tu mi ripon degl’ Avi?
Son queste le corone
onde m’adorn’ il crine?
Questi gli scettri sono,
queste le gemme e gl’ori?
Lasciarmi in abbandono
a fera che mi strazi e mi divori?
Ah Teseo, ah Teseo mio,
lascierai tu morire
invan piangendo, invan gridando aita
la misera Arianna
ch’a te fidossi e ti diè gloria e vita?

Ahi, che non pur rispondi,
ahi, che più d’aspe è sordo a miei lamenti!
O nembi, o turbi, o venti
sommergetelo voi dentr’ a quell’ onde!
Correte orche e balene,
e delle membra immonde
empiete le voragini profonde!
Che parlo, ahi, che vaneggio?
Misera, oimè, che chieggio?
O Teseo, o Teseo mio,
non son, non son quell’ io,
non son quell’ io che i feri detti sciolse;
parlò l’affanno mio,
parlò il dolore,
parlò la lingua si ma non già il core.

Misera, ancor dò loco
a la tradita speme,
e non si spegne
fra tanto scherno ancor d’amor il foco.
Spegni tu morte omai le fiamme indegne.
O Madre, o Padre,
o de l’antico Regno superbi alberghi,
ov’ ebbi d’or la cuna.
O servi, o fidi amici –
ahi fato indegno! –
mirate ove m’ha scort’ empia fortuna,
mirate di che duol m’ha fatto herede
l’amor mio, la mia fede
e l’altrui inganno.
Così va chi tropp’ ama
e troppo crede.

Let me die.
And who do you think
can comfort me
in thus harsh fate,
in thus great suffering?
Let me die.

Oh Theseus, oh my Theseus,
yes, I still call you mine
for mine you are,
although you flee, cruel one,
far from my eyes.
Turn back, my Theseus,
turn back, Theseus, o God,
turn back to see again the one,
who for you has left her fatherland and kingdom,
and who, staying on these shores,
a prey to cruel and pitiless beasts,
will leave her bones denuded.
Oh Theseus, oh my Theseus,
if you knew, oh God,
if you only knew
how much poor Arianna
is frightened,
perhaps, overcome with remorse,
you would return your prow shorewards again.
But with the serene winds
you sail on happily, while I remain here weeping.
Athens prepares to greet you
with joyful and superb feasts and I remain,
a prey to wild beasts on these solitary shores.
You will be happily embraced by
your old parents and I will not see you again,
oh mother, oh my father.

Where is the faith you
swore me so much?
Is this how you place me
on my antecestors throne?
Are these the crowns
with which you adorn my hair?
Are these the sceptres,
the diamonds and the gold?
To leave me abandoned
for the beast to tear up and devour?
Ah Theseus, ah my Theseus,
would you let me die,
weeping in vain, crying for aid
the wretched Arianna,
who trusted you and gave you glory and life?

Ah, that you do not even reply!
Ah, that your are deaf to my laments!
Oh clouds, oh storms, oh winds,
submerge him in those waves.
Fly, whales and orcs,
and fill up the profound gulfs
with these unworldly limbs!
What am I saying? Ah, what am I raving about?
Wretched that I am, what am I asking?
Oh Theseus, oh my Theseus,
that is, that is not I,
that it is not I who hurled these curses,
my anguish spoke,
the pain spoke,
it was my tongue but not my heart.

Wretched that I am, still I give place
to a hope betrayed,
and despite so much scorn
the fire of love is not put out.
For that put out now, death, the unworthy flames.
Oh mother, oh father,
oh superb dwellings of the ancient kingdom,
where my golden cradle stood!
Oh servants, oh faithful friends –
Ah, unjust fate! –
See where a cruel fortune has led me,
see what pain has been given to me as a heritage
for my love, my faith
and for his betraying me.
That is the fate of one who loves too much
and believes too much.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Wisdom from the Eigth Dimension...

...what I don't have, is sufficient focus upon what I DO have.... and not chasing a Priddy Penny ;)

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Sunday, December 16, 2012

America's Citizenry - Seeking Dionysus

Hither, O fragrant of Tmolus the Golden,
Come with the voice of timbrel and drum;
Let the cry of your joyance uplift and embolden
The God of the joy-cry; O Bacchanals, come!
With pealing of pipes and with Phrygian clamour,
On, where the vision of holiness thrills,
And the music climbs and the maddening glamour,
With the wild White Maids, to the hills, to the hills!
Oh, then, like a colt as he runs by a river,
A colt by his dam, when the heart of him sings,
With the keen limbs drawn and the fleet foot a-quiver,
Away the Bacchanal springs!
- Euripides, "The Bacchae"

Her politicians, however, seek a different end...

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Let's Blow this Pop Stand, Richard Parker!

...before the mere cats start dancing and signing their siren songs and REALITY floats away, again!
According to mythology, Leto, pursued by the incensed and jealous goddess Hera, wandered from place to place seeking some corner of the earth in which to give birth to her children, the fruit of her union with Zeus, father of the Gods. But all the Islands and cities refused to receive her, afraid of the vengeance of Zeus' deceived consort, whom only a bare rock in the middle of the tempestuous sea dared to defy.

Prior to this event, the island (Delos) had floated aimlessly in the Aegean, but became anchored in its position by Poseidon who made four granite columns rise out of the sea to anchor it firmly in its present place for the divine birth. This is why the island came to be called Delos, which means 'visible', before which it was a floating, nomadic rock called Ortygia or Adelos (the invisible).

It is said that it was on Delos that Leto finally bore the twins, Apollo and Artemis under a palm. In return for the sanctuary of the island, she promised that the god she was about to give birth to would turn this dry and barren island into a place of great pilgrimage and bring prosperity to its land
- Source.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Sovereignty, the Hidden Goal Behind the Sacrifice

Symbolically, along with the object itself, the one who offers a sacrifice is seen as removed from the demands of utility and consequently as possibly a sovereign subject. Those who offer the sacrifice are not completely dominated by the needs of the system or the process, but, rather, can exist free of their constraints in the moment of the sacrifice.

Hence giving a sacrifice becomes an acquiring of power. Sacrificial gift-giving has the virtue of surpassing of the subject who gives, but in exchange for the object given, the subject appropriates the surpassing: He regards his virtue, that which he had the capacity for, as an asset, as a power that he now posses. He enriches himself with a contempt for riches, and what he proves to be miserly of is in fact his generosity.

Thus by making a display of his disregard for his excess he obtains in the eye of the other who observes (and thus the necessity for giving over private destruction) a status, a power of expenditure and destruction. It is a means of killing two birds with one stone. Not only is the necessary annihilation accomplished, but also there is acquired the respect and regard of the other members of the society. Thus, paradoxically, by giving one is in fact gaining in prestige and societal power and status.

This is tied to his conception of sacrifice in that the gift is an escape from the circle of necessity. “An article of exchange, in these practices, was not a thing; it was not reduced to the inertia, the lifelessness of the profane world. The gift that one made of it was a sign of glory, and the object itself had the radiance of glory. By giving one exhibited one’s wealth and one’s good fortune (one’s power).” Thus by association the giver escapes the domination of objectivity through an assertion of the ability to engage in such expenditure. As the object is taken from the realm of utility to the sacred uselessness of sacrifice, so too is the subjecthood, a basic freedom to express an individual will, of the giver affirmed through his ability to expend beyond the demands of utility.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Dresden Mania

A man always has two reasons for doing anything - a good reason and the real reason.
- John Pierpoint Morgan

Thursday, December 6, 2012

To the Nymph Calypso

"Wretch that I am! what farther fates attend
This life of toils, and what my destined end?
Too well, alas! the island goddess knew
On the black sea what perils should ensue.
New horrors now this destined head inclose;
Untill'd is yet the measure of my woes;
With what a cloud the brows of heaven are crown'd;
What raging winds! what roaring waters round!
'Tis Jove himself the swelling tempest rears;
Death, present death, on every side appears.
Happy! thrice happy! who, in battle slain,
Press'd in Atrides' cause the Trojan plain!
Oh! had I died before that well-fought wall!
Had some distinguish'd day renown'd my fall
(Such as was that when showers of javelins fled
From conquering Troy around Achilles dead),
All Greece had paid me solemn funerals then,
And spread my glory with the sons of men.
A shameful fate now hides my hapless head,
Unwept, unnoted, and for ever dead!"
_ Homer, "The Odyssey"

Saturday, December 1, 2012

She appeared in such a way that I lost myself And went by taking away my 'self' with her - Mir Taqi Mir

Wretched Catullus, stop being a fool,
and that which you see to have perished, consider it gone.
Blazing suns once shone for you
when you would come wither she was leading, a girl
beloved by us as much as no girl will be loved.
There wherever those many jokes happened,
which you wanted nor did the girl refuse:
truly bright suns shone for you.
Now already she wants not; you also, unable, want no longer!
Neither follow she who flees, nor live miserably,
but endure with a resolute mind, harden yourself.
Farewell, girl! Already Catullus is firm,
neither will he chase after you nor will he ask an unwilling girl.
But you will be sad when you will not be asked.
Woe to you, wicked one! Which life remains for you?
Whom now will go to you? To whom will [you] seem pretty?
Whom will you now love? Whose will you be said to be?
Whom will you kiss? Whose lips will you bite?
But you, Catullus, be resolved to be strong.
-Catullus, 8