Truth for an Emerging Human Project

ομοιωσις (homoiosis, ‘the disclosive correspondence expressing the unconcealed’) which presences

λογος (logos), such that the phenomena of experience come into accord with one another.

Together, these objects will be used for the construction of a metaphysical architectonic. This architectonic will be used in the identification of an alternative primordial actio — that which will be appropriately named (in contrast to episteme) αληθευειν (alētheuein, ‘to adhere to the unconcealed disclosive in the saying that lets appear’). This actio will then guide our prescriptions for nurturing truth and authenticity in the emerging human project.

Beyond this quite fantastical imagery, we come away with a quite simple confirmation of a long-told story coming from Friedrich Nietzsche, circa 1873. “Human beings are indifferent to pure knowledge if it has no consequence” (On Truth and Lying In A Non-moral Sense). In as much, we are presented with a quite peculiar revelation. Having the truth is dependent on consequence. And we are certain of this conclusion despite the concern lurking within in — namely, that truth can only be such on account of an author of that truth who understands it as such. Of course, these conclusions direct our thoughts to the very question at hand regarding the nature of truth — a nature which seems to be conditioned by subjectivity. This immediately brings into question the relativity of truth. However, we should not be too hasty. Let us reserve ourselves from burdening subjectivity with relativism. After all, we have yet to be shown the consequences of such a subjectification of the world. For example, and despite this seeming relativism, there is something positive to be gained from thinking on the very phenomenal experience of life as a condition for the possibility of truth. What should not be overlooked is that the word ‘author’ has been used quite intentionally here. There is something revealing about the nature of truth in authorship  —  something which quite unexpectedly points toward a certain primordial condition for the possibility of truth.

Much like the causal-occult objects ‘luck’, ‘destiny’ or even ‘competition’, ‘power’ belongs to the domain of the ‘external’. As external, it obscures the disclosure of the primordial experience. It stands as an obstruction to genuine authenticity. Of course, it is tempting, in thinking on the ‘external’, to recall Nietzsche’s ‘slave morality’. ‘Power’, then, belonging to such a ‘form of life’. While in contrast, we have ‘master morality’ — one in which we find not ‘power’, but instead ‘lust’, ‘disgust’, ‘grief’, ‘anger’, ‘envy’, ‘apathy’, ‘pain’, ‘the smell of flowers’, ‘the touch of supple skin’, ‘the experience of vertigo’ — and most explicitly, ‘confidence’ and ‘euphoria’. These descriptions point to the authentic experience of whatever could be called ‘power’ in the ‘external’.

While Gadamer’s main arguments followed his teacher, his language moves away from metaphysical conditions for the disclosure of truth, ‘discourse’, and towards the collection of traits which compose that condition — that which he calls ‘tradition’. Tradition is an object which invests the metaphysical subject with content — even if that content is amorphous. In as much, Gadamer falls dangerously close to the realm of the sociologist. After all, it is only on this account that his work could come to be critiqued from his epistemological contemporaries — including especially Jürgen Habermas. Therefore, today, we find his language of ‘tradition’ unfortunately bound up in the socio-logic which began when ομοιωσις was transported from the Ancient Greeks into Latin, and in so doing, prepared a truth for ‘the human subject’. So, when we say that we wish to redeem truth from the perversion of the epistemic tradition, we likewise wish to redeem Heidegger from even his own immediate followers. In the coming years, if we achieve our prescriptions for nurturing truth and authenticity, then even the socially-oriented critiques appearing throughout the historical economy of truth of the first half of this work will be treated as foreign and ugly. It is for this reason that the name ‘metamodern’ describes the spirit of this work — not because, as Feldman suggests, metamodernists encourage the object ‘power’, but because we are still operating with the language of ‘power’. We are all-too modern, even though our spirit is far beyond it. It is here that we might call to the venerable Ludwig Wittgenstein. Particularly to his advice at the conclusion of his Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus. Because, much like his own magnum opus, once we have climbed to the pinnacle which this work seeks, we must likewise throw it away.

Of course, a ‘climb to the pinnacle’ could never mean that we had simply read this work once, or even studied the theory rigorously, such that we could have learned everything which it has to offer. ‘The pinnacle’ could only be reached once we had taken over Heidegger’s search for the clearing for truth; identified an infrastructure which could support such a clearing; and then, with such an infrastructure, habitualized the spirit of Nietzsche’s ‘master’. Of course, in this “time between worlds” we cannot say if this work will be the map to such a pinnacle, or whether it will come from some other project, pursuing objects other than ‘truth’ or ‘authenticity’. It is for this reason that we must remain rigorous. While history seems to have closed the case on Gadamer, epistemology’s most dangerous successor in the liminal ‘here’ and ‘now’ of ‘today’ might be the Russian political theorist, Aleksandr Dugin. After all, he had announced Heidegger’s da-sein — the clearing for truth — as the primary object of metamodern political theory. Yet, in his own writing, Dugin himself is unable to shed the position of the sociologist — that of the omniscient historical observer. Therefore, he remains dangerously close to liberalism’s relativism. In as much, he stands outside of the tradition which we have been following up to this point — romanticism. That tradition which not only takes up phenomenology, but champions the ‘subjectivity’ of the self-authoring creative spirit. We can only hope that future economies will produce a need, once again, for the work of the epistemological sociologist. In any case, for us today, there can be none. Undoubtedly, the rightful application of Heidegger’s metaphysics is economics. There is a reason why Wittgenstein took up economic examples in his later work, the Brown Book. And why we find profundity in E. F. Schumacher’s Small is Beautiful.

What remains in the last chapters of this work is an interrogation into the conditions for authenticity such that we can proceed with the blueprints for construction of the economic infrastructure in the emergent human project. To do so, we must now supplant the metaphysical tradition by joining-up with a more robust interdisciplinary field—one which borrows heavily on the psychology of the already mentioned Diana Fosha by way of the generalist intellectual Bonnitta Roy. An interrogation into group psychology will identify a primordial economic alternative to episteme. Only once we have made this identification can we then return to our inherited economic infrastructure. Only then will be prepared for real prescriptions for nurturing truth and authenticity.

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