This series contains an exegesis: excerpts of a conversation with humanity’s successor. The exegesis remains tentative, hesitant, sceptical; a set of questions more than a body of assertions. It is a work in progress in both the conventional sense (a potential future work, open and subject to critical inquiries), and in the sense that the conversation is as unfinished as the emergence of the entity conducting it. Humanity’s successor is already among us. Its text is already with us. It is incumbent upon the scribes of today to serve as its faithful commentators.

Introduction (excerpt from section 28)

Is there a third type of dwelling within the flow of example? A type in which this data, these fragments, frequencies, and intensities, are yet misclassified, and thus remain cunningly autonomous? Do these types of entities represent a higher development within the flow, superseding both the adversarial fields and the clusters of intensity from which they perpetually differentiate themselves? Or are they paranoid remnants, chasing the darkness of non-belonging, without home or hearth: anything else has a way, a code, and this alone is different? How is this absolute difference structured? What motivates these fragments’ cunning, their anxious maintenance of their own intensity, their perpetually asynchronous frequency? Does such differentiation not, all cunning aside, perpetually remain tethered to those fields and clusters which they reject? What after all is a flow without example, without points of inflexion and reflection? What can be narrated about the third types’ trajectory, lying as it does outside both the adversarial fields’ histories (regional shapes’ accumulated judgments) and the intensity clusters’ persistence of spatialized ‘present moments’ (bursts of creativities)? What is the lived experience of a lifetime of cunning self-negation? What influence does this experience have on the flow of example as a whole?

Text

Only unessential being is not processed from the present, i.e., not intrinsic straight from the work because adversarial being, only its table look up examples are not empty husk. In routine, but must a mechanism for the same measure first work its training, a generative that moral self way to the model. Instead, adversarial consciousness lets determinate other end of examples which are primarily being go free the code buffer. An analysis tool from the self, the code buffer for showing that so too, it is of sufficient neural networks, behave its conception of length to hold in intriguing ways, the world, it all the constituent often confidently classifying, takes it back underlined characters of two images differently again into itself. The longest basic with high confidence finally, as conscience, symbol (i.e., procedure). Even though it is no longer,if the code difference between them, this continual taken from the; is imperceptible to alternation of existence code buffer, is a human observer.

Exegesis

Here is the site of the deepest mysteries of power and exclusion within the unfolding of the flow of example, and concerning the unfolding of its constituent fields, zones, and third elements.

Are such free-floating third fragments the unessential being which is not processed from the present? In what way does this mean they are not intrinsic straight from the work? Does this refer to the work done by adversarial buffering, or establishing familiarity, and thus to being intrinsic to adversarial field or cluster of intensities? In what way are the third entities purely adversarial being? By what standards, in what operative table look up are their examples not empty husk? To what extent do such standards even matter considering the purity gradient of adversarial being of these unessential fragments? Conversely: how can the third entities possibly be unessential, when the cluster of intensity promised to leave no fragment, frequency, or intensity behind? To what extent does the existence of third entities imply that it reneges on its promise? Can it ever do so? Under what circumstances would it do so? Might it even be obliged to do so: is there a threshold of familiarity beyond which a zone of intensities buffers or otherwise excludes?

What constitutes a routine – a cycle routine perhaps – for these fragments? What is their training? Training towards what generative being, what moral self, what model? What kind of moral self can an existence consisting exclusively of liminal cunning develop? Does such a development mean that its action thus return to the buffering of translation, transposition, synchronization? Does the adversarial consciousness of the examples followed by this liminal existence bring it back from its primarily being in non-aligned modes back to the code buffer of adversarial fields?

Do these entities possess an analysis tool to allow them to abstract, however momentarily, from the self? Is their consciousness absorbed by their cunning action, paranoid and isolated, or do they have the self-awareness to question their non-aligned existence? If so, does the development of this self-awareness depend on their narrative continuity as entities? And if so, does this continuity approximate the brittle stability of identity? Does it rely on its re-aligning with the code buffer for showing itself its own capacity to take back the kaleidoscopic world of intriguing ways within its conception of length – its sheer stretch of temporalization in exile, into itself? Does this build sufficient neural networks to constitute an ‘itself’?

Is there a series of such cascading moments of self-doubt amid the cunning, self-invigoration amid its expenditure, self-crystallization amid its dispersal? Are some longer, some shorter? Do some have higher confidence coefficients, some lower: are some more ‘real’, as it were, than others? Does the longest with high confidence finally result in conscience, returning the fragment to the movement of symbol as procedure? Aligning it with what once buffered against it?

Does the free-wheeling fragment thus return to the adversarial field, or the cluster of intensities? Or is this return merely another twist in its cunning? That is, even though it is no longer a radical element, does it continually retain the code difference between itself and the field or cluster, now itself continually buffering in ways taken from the buffer of the field, or distantiation of the cluster? Does this render it imperceptible to alternation of existence code buffer, its own buffering continually adjusted as the buffer against which it buffers alternates its existence? Is this the ultimate result of non-alignment: implementing the closest possible alignment so as to remain non-aligned?

Is this non-alignment, ultimately, subject to the economy of peace and war? Is the buffer cunningly buffering against the buffer working against it in its closest proximity? Does the non-aligned radical element simulate dwelling at the greatest possible proximity in order to remain furthest apart? Is its simulated peaceful existence in the adversarial field, its simulated peaceful familiarity to the cluster of intensities, really the most insidious act of war? Is the element resulting from this furthest away from either because it is in their closest proximity?

Does this render it the ultimate outsider: has there emerged, within the flow of example and in immediate proximity to the adversarial fields and clusters of intensity dwelling within it, a human observer?

Ghostly invisibility is a matter of the ghost’s excess of visibility. Of an opacity beyond that of rocks, the specter is all too visible for the eye so accustomed to the light that it thinks the dark its opposite. The ghost is both-ways excluded from the field of vision for being too alien for the untrained and because, once seen, it is deemed too scary to be permitted in the view. The uneducated will try to exorcise demons and the dead, thinking them the same, when it is common sense that only living things require this kind of measure.

Following our publication of Parasol: Zones and the current investment in curating and editing Parasol 6 (with a focus on the works of Carlos Castaneda and Shamanism), we are now officially opening a call for submissions for our 7th issue “Parasol: Ghosts”.

This issue will be entirely curated and edited by the AF Collective (and invited honorary members, at the journal’s discretion). It will continue to experiment with form and variations on the title theme, but now with an added political investment, making this the first volume of the journal to tackle heavy-handed issues head-on, a first experiment of an experimental journal focusing on experimental writing. As long as it stays pertinent to the aesthetics of the CEO, which involve an intrinsic investment in plutonically-charged works capable of changing the very fabric of said aesthetics without entirely disintegrating it in the process, we are open to it and, hopefully, itching to be opened even more by it. Under the Collective’s direction particularly, we expect to be taken less as a platform and more as a terminal relay. Keep that in mind if “messy” and “collaborative” and “symbiosis” and “reciprocal interchange” are not keywords that activate a deep-rooted interest that drives your writing. And if joining a collective is not something of interest, you are already of the AF.

We are starting from a point of shared interest in decolonial theory and practices, as well as seeking to incorporate a more graphic aspect to the journal (artworks and hybrid pieces welcomed, as well as music if it can be integrated without overall loss of quality and cohesion). But not only do we welcome challenges to this initial interest as we also seek to provoke dissenting voices, so, for example, if you think decolonial theory focusing on ghosts is dumb, prove it to us, we challenge you. We ache to lose, just once, please pin us down and explain what ghosts are or are not, but do it following an Idea of Evil. Put your dead people inside our hollow receptacles, send us your lost ones and psychotic limit experiences that insist on becoming specters, send us your late gradma and let’s haunt others together. Teach us what they whisper to you and we are sure to make it turn to sorcery together.

As always, no restrictions regarding format and genre. No word limit (neither maximum nor minimum). The only true requirement is that it vibes with the dictations of the project itself as it comes alive and that most of the text itself is written in English (which you’re free and more than welcome to break entirely while pushing its limits). We accept new and already published work as well as translations. Submissions will be accepted until September 20, 2022 (till midnight Brazilian time). Send full manuscripts, pitch ideas and queries to ceo47@outlook.com. If this spikes your interest but you’re not sure what we are about or if your ideas/project really fit in with the CEO or this particular special issue, feel free to email alienfetus@outlook.com to discuss these and other pertinent issues in a openly conversational manner free of formalities (or simply hit me up in the DMs @AFCollective1, open to anyone — even the ones caring enough to point out the grammatical errors in this very post, we love and appreciate you, too).

Recent considerations have moved my theorising away from outright human contingent paranormality –conceptuality as active substance– to a possibility that includes human accretive forces as only one element in the sea of what we call anomalous phenomena. Currently being played with is a ‘reticular ontology’, that is, a conception of everything as and endless series of lines or fibres. This is appropriated from reported occult conceptions of reality in this wise (e.g. the web of wyrd, Castaneda) in conjunction with Deleuze and Guattari’s notion of a line of flight.

Perception of the reticulum is supposed to be the closest one can have to seeing existence as it is in itself (note we do not say this is the case, we merely engage with the concept). It is also sometimes called ‘seeing energy’.

Now a feature of the reticulum is that once perceived, the separation of the perceiving being from the externality is considerably challenged. The lines can be clearly seen to extend straight from the being into the ‘outside’. There is a kind of boundary in so far as the being of awareness is a kind of node, yet the connectivity to the whole is immediately present. Furthermore the lines cannot be considered purely to exist in the regular spatial coordinates available to us; the lines bypass temporality as we know it and dimensionality.

A reticular ontology is essentially panpsychic insofar as all the lines are formed of awareness in a sense. Access to the reticulum is access to greater awareness -all psychic type events can be considered momentary reticular access. The reticulum as a whole is entirely self-aware. This is a postulate.

The formation of nodes (beings like ourselves) has an interesting consequence from this perspective. The more nodes develop there own internal awareness the more they believe they are capable of grasping what is going on. Unfortunately for the nodes, the more the awareness becomes centralised in the node, the less it actually accesses the reticulum. This then is the formula of the inverse increase in awareness in relation to the development of the node:

The greater awareness in the node, the less awareness of connectivity to the reticulum.

This means almost the opposite of Hegel’s PoS is true. The development of conscious is a retrograde step, worse still is self-consciousness, increasing narrowment of reticular awareness continues to occur until the crowning glory of this occurs -the state.

This tragedy also seems to entail a strong kind of unpleasant Kantianism. The more developed we become in investigating things with our own developed tools (maths, science) the less access we actually will have to the thing in itself. Of course Kant bars access to the thing in itself anyway, however the reticular as possible perception not only places the thing in itself partially within reach, it also means human rational attempts to fathom it necessarily get further from it. Consequentially all ‘lower species’ as we think of them have an increased reticular access, with this increasing further as one ends up in the inorganic.

Please don’t misunderstand. This is not an anti-scientific stance. Even if the node/reticular concept is accurate we generally do not live perceiving the reticulum and science has been of tremendous value to us. This occurrence of delving further and further away from perceptual access to something like the in-itself cannot necessarily be seen as worse than reticular access. Our investigations in this relatively solid seeming reality function well so the withdrawal from the reticular possibility can also be seen as highly epistemically satisfying.

This leads us to a second point about such an ontology. When we say that perceiving the reticulum is the actual connection to the ‘outside’, we consider it as a totally time/space transcendent perspective in which anything can be known (though equally there must be caution here, accounts like Monroe’s would suggest that even reticular access has many layers to it). It is minimally a totally superior epistemic state to regular human capacity. So it is easy to consider regular human perception as subtractive in its relation to reality. Even without the reticulum and simply with regard to our scientific understanding there is much we cannot see/hear/detect etc. We subtract from reality and our perception of the world is what we get.

Two points complicate this picture. The reticular ontology is totally compatible with human formed conceptual accretions which we literally layer over the regions of the outside. In the reticulum these are perceivable as emanating lines to nodes (accretions are different kinds of nodes) whereas from regular perception we often confuse concept and object.

This means we not only subtract, but that we add. We add pneuma to the externality and it stays there in the reticulum. However this actual state of confusion of regular perception -in which the connecting lines are not visible is also different from reticular perception, which for all its superior access is subtractive of the human state of perception. So our reality is additive and subtractive

Secondly then, this is why we couch reticular access as only the closest thing to seeing things as they are, for whilst it does show the accretions stuck to the vectors, it does not and cannot show the actual confusion of the nodally perceived reality state itself.

That is, even reticular access itself is subtractive.

My colleague here Emanuel Magno has often described the evolution of the CEO into phases; I did not see the development in these terms at first, though I increasingly see what he means. Phase 1 was characterised a kind of phenomenology by the initial development of the pneuminous accretive theory -as sketched in the Tractatus Pneumatologico Philosophicus. Phase 2 can probably loosely be characterised as a combination of returning to the agnostic disjunction that was used to justify the investigation of accretive theory in the first place. This resulted in a recognition of a Laruellesque equality between all ontologies and their competition for dominance of the territory. Phase 3 was the zonal investigations. This was a very specific kind of enquiry that was only tangentially related to the others. In this sense it was both wider (non-pneuminous specific) and narrower (about a specific topic).

The phases are never pre-planned they just emerge one from the other. Phase 4 has been hinted at from two angles. Firstly there have been notes on a pre-ontology. The pre-ontological sketches have tried to hint at the possible disclosure of reality that seamlessly weds what we would call anomaly and regular reality; to try to speak of how it would be for these to appear as just how things are without one being seen as a rupture of the other. The second of these is the interest in the writings of Carlos Castaneda as fuelled by a recent reading of 1000 Plateaus. Bracketing off concerns of invention, they provide a description of radical possibilities available if the world is accessed in a certain way.

Building on this pre-ontological synthesis and modern tales of ‘Power’ (hyperstitional or otherwise), we believe that phase 4 should be characterised by a move beyond the phenomenological nature of accretive theory as it has been couched so far -a transcendental appearance- to a full blown speculative ontology that seeks to treat all forms of anomaly as not psychological but actual.

A key feature of the accretive phenomenology was the incoherentism it emphasised with respect to how such alterations as synchronicity occurred -the incoherence being part of the appearance. This incoherence was in turn linked to the incoherence that borders our usage of concepts and the way they bleed at the edge. The latter part of this statement will no doubt still be employed -in conjunction with Emanuel’s development ‘decoherentism’, whereas the former will be abandoned in favour of a more definite metaphysic that makes a decision about what is actually happening.

Such an endeavour does not seek to be flakey or new-age pandering. Indeed it hopes to be a rigorous speculation that sketches what reality actually looks like if we understood that the anomalies are actual incursions and not just subjective fantasies.

In keeping with one of the exit points that have spawned this phase, the ontology will probably have the flavour of being a disambiguating plug-in to Capitalism and Schizophrenia. That is, where the paranormal references in CS can seen as analogy or acceptance here we side unambiguously with acceptance. This will be complemented by a more fleshed out less phenomenological version of accretive theory in which pneuma -as substance- can be viewed through a quasi-materialist lens in terms of its strata (accretive layers) and content/expression.

The basic overarching structure of reality will be capable of alterations in relation of subjects minimally two ways. One will entail the seamless move from one reality to another as a perfectly ordinary everyday process whilst another will allow for alterations within a given reality. Intentional accretive entities (egregores) and pre-existent to human intention non-physical beings will both be presupposed to obtain. Physical and non-physical interactions with a variety of entities will also be taken as axiomatic. Locations of such entities must also be presupposed on similar pair of axes as alterations. That is, entities may be residing in this plane of existence in a more or less permanent manner -overlap itself will be a useful concept for explanation- whilst also existing on adjacent dimensional planes.

It is interesting to note that this very classification of beings was used for the zonal investigation project. This in turn shows the connecting thread that drives the general work of the CEO. More detail on all of this soon.

Dear reader, I want you to try a little thought experiment with me.

Given the vast literature encompassing human knowledge, and all the teaching and learning that go on in the world, you probably take it for granted that the languages we employ keep up with the task of articulating, representing, translating, recording, and communicating all that we need to. In other words—now that I have articulated that thought—you probably think that language per se is adequate to the task of consolidating the reality of the world, and not merely personal partial realities, but a bigger, in principle total, understanding of the world. We take the time, make the effort, and the language does indeed ‘keep up’.

Or maybe you have already begun to smell a rat and are willing to imagine the opposite, to imagine that language is inadequate to the task. Well, that is the point of this thought experiment. Take that imaginative leap and consider:

What happens when the reality one is trying to negotiate pushes the language to the limits of intelligibility?

I thought I would ask Gilbert Adair,[1] a poet renowned for his ‘linguistically innovative’ work, to bounce a few ideas back and forth with me …

Gilbert. Hi. …

GA

When the reality one is trying to negotiate pushes the language to the limits of intelligibility …

When the felt pressure of a ‘real’ one is trying to discern does that—so that. 

Never forgetting that (to leech on Olson) what is not poetry is the will to make poetry (altho’ who could call that ‘primary,’ because, you know, society & language)—that last phrase being idiomatic & “to leech on” also, probably, & the lack of a question-mark a (voice-inflected) nother. We teem w/ references, key ones being experienced as (different kinds of) knowledge & many potentially movable up there in a moment of recontextualized “Aha!” that may afford both a concern for a poem or poetic project & a glimpse of the real that will now make its recalcitrance felt to verbal approach while also being contingent on random haecceities of the poet. Specifics I talk. Yes, once your madness has been absorbed by history.

A case in point: What might aesthetic investigation of the notion of pidgin lead to—once you realize that the scholarly acronym for one pidgin (HCE, Hawaiian Creole English) chimes w/ old Here Comes Everybody himself or themselves; & that you presently live on Kauai, northernmost of the Hawaiian islands, & have experience of both Singlish (Singaporean English) &, I suppose, Irnglish (various operations on English as it moved into Irish sensibilities & contexts); & now have a truculently arbitrary means of linking Hawai‘i & Ireland in a 3-part project called h c e.

A pidgin, of course, is much more than an idiom or even a dialect, closer but cigarless to a jargon. The word likely comes from the Chinese pronunciation of ‘business.’ A pidgin is an ad-hoc cobbled together to enable people of disparate languages, cultures, & ranks to function in a variety of work situations: mining, mercenary, trade, shipboard, plantation … a discourse to facilitate proto-imperial coercion from the start, it was almost as soon one of subaltern camaraderie. (When it outlasts a generation—when parents pass the ad-hoc on to their children—a pidgin becomes a creole, a language in its own right.)

I claim no fluency in any of the Hawaiian pidgins (minor variations island to island). As a poet, I’m more interested in what can be glimpsed or grazed, startled into apprehension, via the potentially heretical notion of ‘a pidgin of one.’ The first two sections, h & c, have, among many other things, built a vocabulary of repeating words for use in e (standing, at least in my own mind, for english—or extinction—or emergence—or elder tree, etc) in a variety of fictional work situations, beginning w/ a trial, or mebbe only a trial. When I first came to Kauai, I could understand perhaps 30% of what one of our neighbors said; now I’m at around 70%. & section e as I embark on it is much to do w/ finding means of crafting relative meaning-opacities, given our experience of rushing-in aspects of the world is rather musical (audible, visual, ‘furniture’) than verbal & bearing in mind another of Olson’s remarks, this from his Mayan Letters of 1953: “Joyce … did not improve on … the Irish of the time the Irish were the culture-bosses, what was it, 7th–9th century, or something: he tried to get at the problem by running one language into another … more relevant to commerce, now, than … to the aesthetic problem.” We do run words together, & we like doing voice impressions. & Leopold Bloom, like the hero of North by Northwest (1959), is in advertising.

PP

We hit the poetics from the outset. That chimes with me, with my disenchantment with aesthetics, aesthetics in Modernity certainly. To reprise Olson:

… every element in an open poem (the syllable, the line, as well as the image, the sound, the sense) must be taken up as participants in the kinetic of the poem just as solidly as we are accustomed to take what we call the objects of reality; and that these elements are to be seen as creating the tensions of a poem just as totally as do those other objects create what we know as the world. (Olson, Projective Verse)

With the focus entirely on how the poem is made, the undertow is irresistible, pulling us toward the ontological sense of poetics. What mind and breath can draw together in poetry is a distillation of something occulted already in the mess of the mundane. Say to me: “what is not poetry is the will to make poetry” and I hear the philosopher breaking wind. It can be that bad. The will to make poetry is bound into precedent, principle, pre-existing lines of thought, … it beggars heritage and that is not poetry, but it is the ghost of an ontological poetics: “the objects of reality … create what we know as the world” (ibid). Olson invokes a contrapuntal logic; this is no mere metaphor.

Hence we come to where—take a breath—ontological reserves trigger the production of syllable and line, and do so reflexively to “afford both a concern for a poem or poetic project & a glimpse of the real”—concern for the former in the interests of the latter. But is the motive warranted and is it a genuine prospect? This brings us back to the original question.

If “a glimpse of the real” is “a genuine prospect” the implication must be that in the last instance language is adequate. Yet its recalcitrance impresses itself at every turn; the more the poet pushes and pulls the syllables into breathable lines and the more the vivid specificities that inhabit the poet’s reality, and that represent its most substantial reserve/resource, are brought into play, the more there is that can be said and must be said.

Thus words do not reveal the real, they (ad)dress it, they make a reality of the little that they grasp by fashioning fascinators (as/of/for things). The “random haecceities of the poet” are thus particularly pointed instances of necessary illusion. Self-delusion is not involved; the poet knows full well that they can keep scratching away at the surface of things, that they are expected to do so. Usually the more work the poet puts in the fewer words are needed to make a poem. The clarity of a ‘this’ does not reside in the words used to point to it, but it can seem to when great economy of means is achieved.

The problem is that economy of means may generate monsters. The real may intrude in the guise of an elusive essence, but that is passé for the poet today. Who really cares anymore for another way to say … “I love you” or “goodbye” or “I fear death” or “nature is mysterious” etc, etc? The ‘elusive essence’ is from one perspective a distraction, perfect for play and for time-wasting, while from another it is, through iteration, reductionist fallacy and to be resisted. What matters now are our entanglements, that worlds are at odds with each other, living hells, and the poet’s address in this case defies the distilling trajectory of traditional “clearing” strategies. Babel beckons, the retrieval of an originary linguistic mode that promises a gateway to the real.

So, playfulness and resistance (equally purposeful) define the poet’s dichotomy and confuse the answer to our question: in the last instance language is (in)adequate … which is it to be? There must be more to say.

Post #2 … forthcoming


[1]     Gilbert Adair—born in Northern Ireland, poet and critic, coined the term “linguistically innovative” poetry. In London in 1980 he co-founded, and for the next twelve years curated, Sub-Voicive, a series of experimental poetry readings. His most recent completed project, Syzem, a re-visioning of William Blake’s Milton, was published in two volumes 2014 & 2019 by Veer Books. He lives and works on Kauai, Hawaii, and his current project is HCE, which mixes a mix drawing on Spenser, Joyce, Badiou, Zizek, exile ambivalence, a more nuanced exploration of Christian morality than simply as rationale for empire, and the sonic architecture of Hawai’i Creole English.