Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Dark Gaze

“Here (and in conformity with a long poetic tradition) the abyss of infinity is contained in the eye that gazes at us (Hegel called this ‘the night of the world’). But, of course, there is one instance when the two terms, Auge [Auge / n, eye / s] and Blick [gaze], are even more happily united: precisely the notion of Augenblick (moment). When, in Zarathustra, the theme of eternal recurrence appears for the first time (in the chapter ‘On the Vision and the Riddle’), Nietzsche talks about a ‘gateway’ called ‘Moment’ (Augenblick), a point at which two paths meet (as if ‘offending each other face to face’) -- two paths that seem to contradict each other, and to stretch for an eternity in opposite directions.”

“We have to be careful in talking of the unknown as an object since, if Blanchot is correct, the distance between subject and object collapses in inner experience to reveal, at the last possible moment, a distance in being itself [a small blue distance]; a fissure that allows for the production of images. This distance (as Blanchot insists on calling it) cannot be traversed by a gaze but ‘is’ a dark gaze that cannot be borne. To have appeared before it is already no longer to be an ‘I’.” (1)


The revolutionary potential of this zone within representation and experience (the small blue distance conceived in the very act of cognizing the world) is infinitely contested. The radical otherness of such a zone (as in Tarkovsky’s very sly film Stalker) lies in a conflation of forces that resist categorization and instrumentalization -- a set of forces often assembled under the term Spirit. The resistance to categorization (systematization) characteristic of such ‘places’, and always already ‘outside’, remain, nonetheless a fact of life (if not a birthright) most often denied. Before the onslaught of authorized narratives, including much-maligned master narratives, the sacred descends in/through and by way of the coordinates that one might call the prison-house of fallen languages (simulacra)...more

Now go get lost. These are cloying, secondary, endlessly preparatory posts, I know. Sorry. (Still, thanks for the reminder).

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