Ecstatic comes from the Greek word ekstatikos, of "unstable, inclined to depart from." Heidegger made a big deal about it by writing existence as ek-sistence. "Ek" as outside of yourself. This eksistence is characteristic of Dasein's temporality, because the present is always sandwiched between the past and the future, where we also, strictly, are. That … Continue reading Ecstasy.
For Freud, we escape from reality into dreams, and then encounter in it what is so real and traumatic that we escape from dreams (desperately) back into reality. This is how we should read the play. It is not a comedy, but the more tragic of all because it ends happily. The middle portion where … Continue reading A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Hegel's lesson from the fall is that the worst thing is to treat an other as harmless, as incapable of evil. This very consideration of innocence deprives them of their humanity, their ability to do good. The fall creates the condition for human striving towards the divine; without the fall there is no human. Anyone … Continue reading Be (Respectfully) Violent
The best tragedies are really comedies. City Lights is just one of those masterpieces. It is a statement on love, on cinema, and on life in general. I will not provide a summary. If you want, you can find it on the internet. Here are some analysis. This is our predicament. All too often, when … Continue reading City Lights, A Review
Hannah Arendt wrote about this in Between Past and Future: We are always subject to social pressures. When parents reject any form of discipline of the child, in fear of destroying their childhood innocence, of tyrannizing them, they are only leaving children to the tyranny of the larger social group. I can see this clearly … Continue reading Be Myself?
This year will probably be the most stressful year of my school life. I am applying to University this November. There are still 3 months but I am frankly already worn out. I really just want to do what I love (reading Literature, writing, doing contemporary continental stuff), but instead I have to do what … Continue reading The Sublime Object of College Admissions
It is a practice of Glenn Gould's to not play for a few weeks before a recording. It makes it much better (at least, that is what he believes). Recently I had the uncanny experience of playing the piano after a week of abstention and feeling it flow better than before (the specific piece is … Continue reading Theorizing the Negative
Mutual recognition, as a Hegelian term, has been misunderstood greatly. It is not something great, it is not static, but it is precisely in mutual recognition that differences emerge. Fight Club revolves around recognition. The first scene with Bob and the narrator hugging together exposes already the hidden inauthenticity in recognition—the two parties are recognizing … Continue reading Fight Club & Mutual Recognition
This will be a short essay. There is a passage from the Confessions (XII)that helped me understand Heidegger's ontology. It rests on this sentence from Genesis: "The earth was invisible and formless, darkness was over the deep" Augustine asks: How can there be nothing before creation? How can something come from nothing? A traditional interpretation would … Continue reading Augustine and Heidegger
I discussed this with my friend, and she said that this is depressing. I said, the more depressing thing is that if we cannot know ourselves, then we can less know anyone else. We are fundamentally alone. Know thyself is a problematic proposition. It is not without value. Only that it cannot be taken as … Continue reading Know Thyself?