The Labyrinth & on Desire and Pleasure: you'll just have to deal with my leakage

I'll do some back-trcking with background and fore-tracking with commentary...but here's a couple paragraphs that struck me today as I was trying to get some work done. Please bear with the vocabulary...it is sensical, just give it a chance. Right now it doesn't matter who wrote these words...I'll unfold this like origami.

--The Culprits--

I. General economy is a traffic system; marking routes within the complex immanence or quasi-horizontality that infests the axis of transcendence. Every vertical difference is collapsible onto a tangled horizontal flow. It is not that base materialism denies the necessity of vertical articulation; there is no tendency to delete the vocabulary of summits and troughs, differences in intensity, materialist thought would leave nothing but a theologically constituted reality abandoned by God (a colony of particles). Scaling is the positive superfluity of God inherent to matter, but its gradations of relative transcendence must be commensurated with an impoersonal nature exhausting the real: genealogically rather than metaphysically explored. The labyrinth is the unconscious of God, or the repressed monotheism. The illusion of ego in general requires that it remain unthought. What God really was is something incompatible with anything 'being' at all. Real composition is not extrinsically created nature, but if this is a Spinozism, it is one in which substance itself is sacrificed to the scales. So that atheism is in the end (an end without an end) an immense sponge, a mega-sponge, the dissolution of boundaries in all of its positive complexity. It is an inexhaustible porosity, drunk upon the sea. Sponge-matter -- encroached without limit bt silence -- is the same thing as fate. In any traffic system real transition precedes articulation (which means that there are no boundaries, but only digressions). Sponge-vectors do not connect pre-existing points, but spawn decomposable patches from out of the subtilization of speeds and the intricate criss-crossing of routes. Absolute points are transcendent mirages, hyperbolically projected out of dismantled vector nets. The reality of space is only the possibility of flow.

sub-I. Freud, too, is an energeticist (although reading Lacan and his semiological ilk one would never suspect it). He does not conceive desire as lack, representation, or intention, but as dissipative energetic flow, inhibited by the damning and channelling apparatus of the secondary process (doman of the reality principle). Pleasure does not correspond to the realization of a goal, it is rather that unpleasure is primary excitation or tension which is relieved by the equilibriating flux of sexual behaviour (there is no goal, only zero); 'unpleasure corresponds to an increase in the quantity of excitation and pleaure to a diminuition' [F III 218]. This compulsion to zero is -- notoriously --ambivalent in Freud's text: 'the mental apparatus endeavors to keep the quantity of excitation present in it as low as possible or at least to keep it constant' [F III 219]. Far from being a discrediting confusion, however, such ambivalence is the exact sympton of rigorous adherence to the reality of desire; epressing the unilateral impact of zero within the order of identitarian representation.
Psychoanalysis, as the science of the unconscious, is born in the determination of that which sufferes repression as the consequence of a transgression against the imperative of survival. It is the pursuit of this repressed threat to the ego which carries Freud along the profound arch of thought from sexuality to the death drive. At first ( in the period up to the First World War) the attempt to explicitly formulate the site of the most irremediable collision between survival and desire leads Freud to his famous reading of the Oedipus myth and the sense os the Father's law, since it is the competition with the Father -- arising as a carrelate of the infant's incestual longing for the mother --- that first brings the relations between desire and survival to a crisis. Later, in the formulation of the death drive, the sacrificial character of desire is thought even more immediately, so that desire is not merely integrated structurally with a threat to existence within the oedipal triangle. but is rather related to death by the intrinsic tendency of its own economy. The intensity of the affect is now thoughtt as inherently oriented to its own extinction, as a differentiation from death or the inorganic that is from its beginning a compulsion to return. But despite recognizing that the conscious self is a modulation of the drives, so that all psychical energy stems from the unconscious (from which ego-energy is borrowed), Freud seems to remain committed to the right of the reality principle, and its representative the ego, and thus to accept a survival (or adaptation) imperative as the principle of therapeutic practice. It is because of this basic prejudice against the cleaims of desire that psychoanalysis has always hasd a tendency to degenerate into a technology of repression that subtilizes, and therefore reinforces, the authority of the ego. In the terms both of the reality principle and the conservative moment of psychoanalysis, desire is a negative pressure working against the conservation of life, a dangerous internal onslaught against the self, tending with inexorable force towards the immolation of the individual and his civilization.

MORE TO COME...stay tuned after these respites of light abundance.


update: a nod to maureen dowd for beating me to the glazing of one of my points regarding (the start of) this thread of eventual discovery. sorry for not being able to get to point sooner... i'll try. too much right now...too much.


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