The song, “This is not a Love Song”, by the 80’s band PiL, for some unknown reason – not that i liked the song when it was around – came through my mind today.
And this seemed relevant…
Love. To me, love is more than attraction, or even intense attraction, or infatuation, or big like, and it is not just sexual attraction that can be called lust. It can be all of those, but to me, it is commitment. To me, love is the knowledge that usurps whatever reservations I may have had for what I before may have thought was ‘commitment’. Love effects me so that the feeling or thought or intuition I may have had upon what the future may hold, is accompanied by a negation of what potential desires I may be imagining of that future, such that I know that I will always have invested concern for that person in my life, that my future becomes thus ‘our life’. The commitment may not always be easy to uphold, but whatever dissatisfaction may arise, it is and will be always, to the best of my ability, tempered by love, that indeed we are committed.
Probably many people have no idea what I’m talking about. I see this is because they have no idea what love is, that to them it has to do with immediate desire. Perhaps this is why divorce is such a viable presence and why many people do not get married. And I mean married in the supra- or extra- institutional sense, as a committed relationship made between two people aside from social stamping.
With this, I enter on a tangent upon the main issue of my ongoing discussion concerning Laruelle and Non-Philosophy.
Now, when commitment is seen or understood as requiring a great effort, where love has seemed to have nearly disappeared from the relationship, I would suggest that it is because love, true love, that stems from mutual love, was not really true to begin with. Love, when it has developed along side of commitment, as a force of will, only loses integrity as an effective ideal when the individual is oriented upon desire – that is unless great force is applied, and ironically, love is the great force that is usually misunderstood and so never leveraged effectively, which is to say without will. Don’t get me wrong, though; desire is a natural and inherently good aspect of our human being. The problem is when desire dominates the individual so as to fulfill one’s purpose in life, it usually inflates the sense for the need of willfullness. Want becomes the overwhelming motivation in being human; want becomes what it is to be human.
In an attempt to be more clear: In existence there are objects. In an earlier post, I write about how things are, for our being human, entirely contained in knowledge. The physical effect, such as pain, created by an object, while causing some reaction in us – the meaning of such effect is mediated and significant to us only in and by knowledge. There is not pain for a human being that is meaningless. Even if someone were to not know the reason of pain, or could not identify a source and purpose of an effect from a thing, the meaning is exactly “I don’t know”. Autonomic reaction, or reflex may occur, but not void of meaning. There is nothing real or unreal that is not contained in our knowing of it, of it being of knowledge.
The solution to the basic problem of humanity must begin with knowledge. The basic problem arises between the subject, the person or single individual, and the object, the thing. This duality has been relegated into the duality of thought and action. The problem can be phrased thus: how does one be consistent with one’s self ? How does one proceed to remain confident at all times that he or she is doing what is best for him or herself, all the while remaining within one’s own ethics such that there arises no conflict, no doubt of one’s own self in life? Is there a way to align one’s thoughts and actions so they achieve the fullest benefit of life for one self (as this may include social benefit, but it does not have to) ?
I propose that such questions align with a perception that includes the individual as a thing, and, that because an individual is thereby a thing, the individual itself, of itself, to itself, is likewise a thing. Such perception also aligns with the idea that we have a subjective, or inner self, that we are capable of thinking upon as if it were likewise a thing, in other words, objectively. This idea has been expressed many times in the ontological (issues of Being) postulates that arise as “we can be conscious of our own consciousness”, and we then get the ‘ego’, ‘super-ego’ and such psychological constructions by extrapolation.
When such a perception or idea forms the root or ground of one’s thinking about reality, history unfolds in a progression that finds psychology, which is the human being come complete as a thing, an object: a subject-object. Hence, items or objects of the psyche thus also become things and can be liked and disliked, and then not only do other individuals become appraised as to objective qualities, but the individual itself, upon itself, as if he or she is likewise an object to be appraised of qualities, is defracted, becomes, as a process of history, divided unto itself. The solution of psychology aggravates its own problem. This is our present condition of human conventional understanding. (And this is the problem Laruelle notices of philosophy. )
I venture to say, coming back to the topic at hand, that such an individual, a subject-object, has no ability to love to another human being, beyond merely desiring them to possess, as a thing might be possessed. The human being is not a thing with definite static qualities; even noticeable traits that seem consistent change. Rather, this is to say, the love as commitment achieves for such a one, anger, fear, frustration, doubt, and struggle. Attraction, linked as it is to a definite quality of thing, fails in the effervescence of the human dynamic.
Love, true love, is called up from the subject to test the integrity of the Being in the world. The problems of the world are the the failure of the subject of conventional knowledge (the subject-object).
Are we things or are we Beings? When love is true, attraction never goes away, the complexities of life do not sway one from the other but only confirm that the love is true; desire never diminishes, attraction never fades, and love grows.
When Laruelle talks about his project of Non-Philosophy, he is implicating that which I speak here, that i have put in terms of love.
I shall continue back into the discussion proper, after these messages….