The Transcendental Computer

A Non-Philosophical Utopia By François LARUELLE

The unified theory of thought and calculation, unification in-the-last-identity, is a task facing every encyclopedic spirit (Morin, Serres). It is also the theme of the transcendental computer (TC), of a machine that would have a transcendental link to philosophy in its entirety, thus capable of thinking-calculating the mixtures of thought and calculation according to a “unified” mode—such as a transcendental arithmetic like Platonism, or any other combination of these terms regnant in philosophy and calculation. In advance, it is necessary to determine a prejudicial question that concerns the degree of non-philosophy‟s automaticity. What follows is, in this sense, an attempt at the limitations of the theme of the transcendental computer. Automaton and Unimaton If the non-philosophical practice finds its bearings via, or measures itself against, an effect (the unification- or clone-effect), this effect is the type of disalienation possible for the statements of the World, de jure representable or philosophizable, since the Onein-person cannot be this bearing, itself being unidentifiable. Already one could object, and one could understand what has just been said as follows, that this non-philosophical practice is not identifiable as specifically “non-philosophical,” its cause being Identity-inperson, which is not identifiable in exteriority as an available criterion since it is lived-inimmanence. Its cause could also be just as easily the effect of a machine simulating a completely absent subject, in some way a charitable automatism (automatic operation), and thus, all things considered, it was not necessary to critique philosophy. If a machine in the classic sense of this word can do what non-philosophy does, are not the latter and its theory useless? More exactly this objection is the consequence or the continuation of a division of non-philosophy liable to give rise to two images: an inert theoretical image of a machine or mechanism composed of objectified parts and an image of practical functioning, the latter given without objectivized, but lived, difference. The objection supposes the right to resolve the non-philosophical practice into an inert structure as the photographer does, who supposes that the photograph must be constructed beforehand, even before she is able to function and in order that she may function. However, if there is indeed a presupposition to this thought, it is not a structure, a diagram, an intelligible figure in a space of transcendence (a structure of this type exists for philosophy itself; it is one of its modes of settlement in itself philosophical), but it is precisely what defies every transcendence and every inert structure composed of terms and relations, points and vectors, etc. ; it is the Real-in-person.

According to this objection, only effects would be appreciable as relevant or not to non-philosophy‟s presuppositions of „humanhood‟ [humanéité]. 1 But this objection conceals its own presupposition, which is to consider a priori the effects themselves as already being those of an insertable automatism with the latter in a structure, inert effects already given in the World (Husserl would have said in the “natural attitude”) and recorded. This is to prejudge the nature of Identity-in-person and, based on this vicious circle, to conclude from the automatic nature and alleged mechanism of these effects their producibility by a machine. But nothing occurs in this way in non-philosophical practice, which is not a robot simulating man. It is a contemplative or theoreticist vision, thus an absolute objectivism—materialist or somehow mechanistic a priori—that is a philosophical possibility. Let us examine these effects of non-philosophical practice since this is the criterion or the objection‟s subaltern argument. Of course there are effects (of cloning), but there is nothing automatic about them, and should not be considered dogmatically as inert things. They are, on the material side [part] and on the one hand, formed from the inert things of the World yet already enveloped in a horizon of philosophizability or transcendence (which itself includes the possibility of a subject or what is labeled as such), these two components being mixed. And on the other hand [part], from a radical or “lived” immanence (the Lived-in-person) which excludes being mixed and is not in any way a part of a whole. Yet the mixture and non-mixture do not mix themselves but, so to speak, wed and embrace one another, join together without circular synthesis in an irreversible alliance known as the existingsubject-Stranger or the subject-existing-in-struggle. This subject is the veritable effect, complete in its identity and its (unilateral) duality; it is practice including a material of form-philosophy. Where is the effect of practice intelligible in the subject? In and as that which we have called the phenomenon or the appearing of the practical subject, which is not the juxtaposition of the two halves but the transformation of one of the sides by the other with which it unites without synthesis. For example, the effects of performed textual statements, if they are not continuously brought back to Identity-in-person or the cloned, again give rise to thingified [choisifiée] and inert automatic practice seen from the point of view of philosophy alone and then delivered to the division of which we spoke above. The being-performed of Identity or Man-in-person and its cloned effects, however, is not itself visible or perceptible, yet makes its mark through such effects not just in the visible and the perceptible of history and the world, as in a receptacle, but as contiguous with their form-philosophy or world. This form thus transformed gives rise to an appearing that is phenomenal or determined-in-the-last-identity (in-the-last-livedexperience?). It is form-philosophy as given in-One, or even its transcendental identity. In this form-philosophy is included in particular the subjectivity whose phenomenal appearing in-One is the material of the subject‟s effect. It is thus excluded in any case that the determined effects, which are of philosophical extraction, can be produced by an automatic system, at least insofar as the transcendental mechanism of philosophy can itself escape from this automatism and this reduction to a simple mechanism. It is transcendence in general that excludes its reduction to an algorithm.
1

The word Laruelle uses, humanéité, is most likely a combination of the words humanité (humanity) and ipséité (ipseity), a philosophical combination of individual identity and selfhood. For this reason, I have translated Laruelle‟s word as „humanhood,‟ the constitutive aspects of the act of identifying oneself as a human.

Now we can obviously pose the problem of transcendence‟s possible degree of automation, which is the transcendental nerve of philosophy. But to the degree that it continues although transformed in the subject, it limits the chances of automaticity and formalism. We can obviously compare the modes of immanence of Man and machine. Or instead the former supposes a human whose functioning the machine imitates to the nearest point; it is an interiority of consciousness displayed in space. Or instead this machinic and algorithmic immanence is first, and it is consciousness or our concept of consciousness that imitates the machine. We turn in a vicious circle. Man-in-person indeed is not a subject in the traditional sense nor a “man” in the anthropological sense, a general manner of consciousness or being. In one sense the “passivity” of Man-in-person does nothing but reinforce the “mechanistic” aspect, even if we say that it is of pure lived experience. Its automatismic aspect is perhaps an appearance created by the absence or the lack of an active subject, locatable and identifiable, which makes believe in a machine. Identity-in-person resembles a machine without being one; it is the radical immanence that makes us think here of transcendence and of its void of subjectivity. Radical immanence is also void of subjectivity but not of lived experience, for this is what distinguishes radical immanence from a machine. Here this is not the machine that simulates a man at the vanishing limit of consciousness, but Man-in-person who simulates a machine or an automatism. Man, being neither a consciousness nor an unconscious, undoubtedly and in a negative way seems closer to the machine, if not its immanence, and is necessary as presupposition, as logical and real unmixed necessity. Everything that comes from philosophy or supposes it is of the order of the Real, at least as a symptom; that which comes from logic and necessity is of the order of identity. We could say that Man-inperson is an-axiomatic or an-hypothetical, in the sense that the privative “an-” is radical or expresses that Man is in-Man and not at himself or in himself, and thus foreclosed to philosophy and all automaticity. Instead of supposing axioms to be true as in logic, we suppose them to be real or an-axiomatic. Not an axiom of axioms, but a non-axiom or anaxiomatic. These are unilateral axioms; they are such by one of their sides alone; they are thus not self-referential axioms (non-Gödelismic), although it is not certain that these exist, except in the forms of language and meta-language, meta-discourse being useful for talking about the axioms or their constitution. The One-in-One is not the 1 opposite the 2/3 of philosophy. It is not describable by a vocabulary of absolute transcendence but by axioms that give them where its effects are. Still automatism, the One is perceptible only through these effects of discourse or its practice, not in itself, for it is not a thing or intelletual intuition. M. Henry could not stop himself from giving it an identifiable content in transcendence. But this is not the algorithmic automatism that is fully perceptible and given in a finitary and quasi-geometric manner. The scientific automatism is of transcendence but not philosophical; it thus supposes a meta-language, undoubtedly the complex form of the scientific relation to reality. Man-in-person is neither an automaton, an auto-nomic, auto-functional functioning, nor a functioning that supposes a multiplicity of causes and effects. If absolutely necessary it is a uni-maton in the occurrence determining a practice (unimaton signifies that the “-maton” aspect is ordered with respect to the “identity” aspect or

determined-in-One). The term “immanence” is ultimately misleading like the others, leading philosophers to believe in a thing, whereas it is here as remainder nothing but an attribute which disappears in an axiom which makes use of it, a term designating the Real through objective appearance. Non-philosophical practice is a uni-maton in the sense that it is a unified first term and not a unitary syntagm. However, this can only be the condition of knowledge, at best an automatism of a philosophizable nature. The latter wills itself in “auto-“ mode (that which is never all made true). The auto- supposes an active-passive immanence, a transcendence, a unified system of multiple pieces, at least two and ultimately 2/3. In any case we must begin by distinguishing between the two forms of automatism, the philosophical and the logical, and a minimal form that is instead unimatic. The logical admits a metalanguage, the philosophical, rather, admits a hermeneutics; the unimatic bans metalanguage and hermeneutics or operates their unified theory. In all three cases it is a matter of speaking “about” a discipline, philosophy, or logic. These latter two resolve the problem by speaking of one another with their own language, which allows them also, obviously, to speak of themselves respectively. Since the duality of logical metalanguage is opposed to philosophical mixture, non-philosophy is perhaps that which unifies these two practices, the transcendental and the metalinguistic, two types of duality, or even that which I have always called the philosophical posture and the scientific posture. If these would be the three grand styles, is perhaps the word style the most suitable? That which I call axiom is neither a metalanguage for philosophy and its own “axioms” nor a philosophical hermeneutic where something transcendental is conserved, even if the axioms hold for the metalanguage and for the interpretation of philosophic postulates. The an-axiomatic or non-axiomatic Real prevents axioms from sinking into Being, Nothingness, the Multiple, ontology, or into the finitary-intuitive space of logic and symbolizing with ideality. It deprives them of their sufficiency. Indeed, final review on the problem which simulates which? requires seeing that this simulation exists for a philosopher, not for human Identity itself which knows itself separate from the machine like the rest. It would obviously be necessary to review the concept of simulation in all its uses and perhaps review the meaning of this obsession with the machine. Ultimately is not the machine in-philosophy or philosophized that phantasms a simulation of the machine through Identity-in-person, that of which we speak? Would there be a narcissism of the philosophized machine that would throw back the functioning of the simulation onto Man-in-person? Watch as if I were beautiful and fascinating… Once reduced to the state of symptom, form-philosophy does not become a pure machine. In this case it is Man-in-person who would reduce this form to the state of automatism, while in addition it and its practice would arise from the uni-maton. Nonphilosophy or the unimaton would make use of philosophy by reducing it as automaton in a truly special sense, but whence would the impression come that non-philosophy does things that a machine could do? The thesis of the possibility of a transcendental computer (TC) could be sustained under two distinct forms:

- under a strictly machinic and technological form of AI (artificial intelligence), immediately supposed realizable in the near technological future, with no other difficulty than that of the current age, - under a non-philosophical form for which a TC is a plausible but indirect Idea, which supposes a detour out of the machine. This bridge between the machine and the transcendental is the theory of thought and calculation unified-in-the-last-instance, being understood that the conditions of the machine are necessary but insufficient, thus that a machine alone cannot be a TC but that for the latter Man is necessary (not as consciousness, which eliminates a part of the classical discussions between philosophers and information theorists of AI, for we no longer oppose the thought in calculation in a complete fashion). Solution 1 would realize the same performances as the TC of solution 2. This implies that it would suppose that its machine attains the same effects as Real structure + determination-in-the-last-instance. Can a machine imitate immanence and above all DLI (determination-in-the-last-instance)? It is at least doubtful. If we refuse to make this postulation (the effects similar to those produced by DLI necessarily supposing this postulation, which can merely be simulated only to the point of being mistaken for DLI), we are, however, obliged to suppose or to give ourselves 1/3 of synthesis between machine and philosophy, which is the concept of performance (“the same performances”). It is necessary to turn the discussion towards the all-purpose concept of performance that permits in general for AI to claim to be equivalent to the “performances” of intelligence and even thought (for we still do not distinguish between the two yet). Performance is measurable and utilized or supposed as an identification criterion of the calculation in thought and conversely of the reduction of the former to the latter. However the psychological situation is still more complex, the machine not attaining the same performances as “human” intelligence except on condition of surpassing them or secretly hoping to surpass them. If not, what is the point (without supposing that it is intelligence itself that still wants to surpass itself by creating the machine‟s mirror in which it can see itself triumphing over itself)? The notion of performance is a presupposition that encroaches on intelligence‟s sense and on that of which it is capable. It is a notion of technological and quantitative measure but supposedly equivalent to intelligence. It supposes between the departure and the target an identity of effects or ends and undoubtedly a homogeneity of syntax and semantics, an algorithmic transparence. This is to say that it is worth nothing to philosophy (as much a failure as a success, and the failure here is not necessarily the opposite of success), in which such a transparency does not exist, philosophy reciprocally determining dualities, for example its syntaxes and its materials. Here it is necessary to distinguish intelligence and philosophy. “Cognition” is a priori parceled into systems more or less closed and isolated, which can in effect be measured in terms of performance. AI prejudges intelligence by setting for it limits or goals determined and finite in the measurable sense in order to compare it to the machine. The situation is quite different with philosophy. We could with the same rigor define intelligence by the type of performance it can simulate, a machine either in its functioning or in its effects. But philosophy cannot be thus reduced a priori, parceled into functions or into effects and prejudged. Why? Philosophy makes use of intelligence or cognition, but on behalf of a

special form of thought, probably irreducible to any numerical combination. Undoubtedly many objects or operations “of” philosophy are thus reducible to performances, but they are in reality intra-philosophical and return to an operational horizon forgotten on principle and which justly cannot be “recalled” through calculation. This transcendental horizon is auto-position or the “philosophical decision.” Auto-position seems like a goal to be attained and one that philosophy attains, but the latter attains it such that it misses it or at least includes its misfire in its success. Auto-position is a superior performance or the “superior” and transcendental concept of performance. The schema in 2/3 or 3/2 is an arithmetic approximation, whereas philosophy is a transcendental arithmetic or is equivalent to the existence of the real. Arithmetic is also “equivalent” to the real, but to a region of the real and not fundamentally to the real itself, and moreover is equal for it or possess a constituting power of legislation. Philosophy is transcendental in a narrow sense for experience, and in a larger sense for itself, insofar as it is sometimes the thought of the real but also the real or thought as real. But this relation to experience and/or to itself is called transcendental because it conditions or legislates on its object, which seems at the same time to be neither exhausted nor reduced. The concept of performance thus here only has a local and not a global meaning, provisional but not final. Will this not be paradoxically an artifact or a concept, a representation of consciousness? How do we conceive that the act of position, which simultaneously has a status of metaphor and a proper sense (it is necessary here that either the proper or the real exists in philosophy and that it is not metaphorical through and through even if it shows itself to be hallucinatory under other conditions), can be calculable, reducible to effects of numerical combinations? All the more so for the division and duplication of position, the acts of de-position and over-position, in short the “auto” ? One last argument of the same type can found itself on the auto-speculative nucleus of philosophy as speculation. Philosophical specularity (the foundation of its theoreticism) is not simple; here there must be a mirror that can take the place of the real and in certain “idealistic” cases itself be apprehended in the game of reflections. This ultimate structure of philosophy, presupposed by the doctrines which use philosophy as a reference but do not pursue the analysis as far as its utmost or minimal end, is a phenomenon that could be called qualitative, at least as far as certain thinkers want it to be quantitative or simply to derive it as inessential. The great law of philosophy, the law that is such that philosophy submits to it, is of being a mixture of the numerical and qualitative here under the form of position or specularity. Nothing authorizes a philosopher, i.e. someone who distinguishes between philosophy and cognition, to let himself be intimidated by the machine‟s performances, which are truly performances but nothing more. The philosopher must seem to allow the machine to grow and even to make it grow where it can, accepting to more or less empty philosophy completely of its substance of intelligence. But a residue survives this cognitivist reduction, which is the first and last nucleus, numerically invulnerable. Why do we want to save this exterior that philosophers themselves ostensibly create to forget? It merits being saved if it is original and specific, incalculable as it is probable. Even Badiou, who develops an ontology of the “pure” numerical, reserves philosophy‟s role as power of reception, thus of quasi synthesis or system, a sort of complement or supplement to mathematics. Furthermore the duality of the numerical and the continuous, of the mathematical and the philosophical (these terms should merit being nuanced and utilized with caution…), is a historical

constant that traverses every occidental thought, where the numerical regularly promulgates its victory and the continuous its survival. In their generality these are imaginary “transcendentals” or apparently inseparable paradigms (Bachelard), as if thought were condemned to follow a double path or to struggle on two fronts. These are good reasons for maintaining the originality of philosophy, at least of its essence. Nonphilosophy is among other things a manner of recording this survival without claiming to see one of the parts crush the other but by relating each one to an instance that is neither the continuous (dominant in philosophy) nor the discontinuous (dominant in science). The contradictory argumentation of AI and the advocates of Consciousness is always wearisome and the same. The first states that it has already realized such a performance and therefore that it will realize others still more important in the field of thought. It is animated by a philosophical claim but advances under the guise of science. The second always responds through a final domain where it takes refuge in its mastery and defies AI to access it. But this is always an object or a domain of philosophy, not the latter in its essence. I will consider that this conquest and this self-defense both have a positivity and a validity, that they not only have the same sense through their reciprocal opposition, and that the latter justifiably testifies to their common claim, their will of the absolute which it divides. I propose to call this conflict the antithetical of cognition or of thought-calculation, a restrained antithetical under the form Consciousness/Cognition, and generalized or extended under the Philosophy (rather than thought)/Calculation form. We shall posit that non-philosophy is an attempt to give a (non-Kantian…) solution to this conflict, i.e. in order to “exit” it or more precisely to show how and under what conditions thought can never have entered it. As for the program/execution distinction (and, on this model, theory/practice), this is a duality of another nature, internal to computer engineering. In a sense every duality of this kind is always usable to characterize non-philosophy, which functions with such dualities, but on condition of previously interpreting it in a philosophical rather than unilaterally machinic sense, of deploying its potential horizon of philosophical sense. Non-philosophy only denies “over-human” or “ultra-human” pretensions, but it is a pragmatic that can make good use of all dualities. If we do not pass through this preliminary preparation phase of the material, we reduce inversely philosophy and nonphilosophy to inert sets and we forget what truly constitutes “life” (perhaps hallucinatory but philosophy‟s life all the same)—to know auto-position—without speaking of that of non-philosophy, the vision-in-One. A person might endeavor to resolve the TC in a purely machinic manner if he begins by reducing or restraining the extension of the problem and its givens in the program/execution couple. Transcendental life and still less real lived experience are not reducible to algorithmic repetitions but can make use of them (always unilaterality). A performance fundamentally consists in simulating either the functioning or more simply the effects (“the same effects,” but a last simulation conceals itself in this notion), by completing as well as succeeding in an already defined or fixed task, free to surpass it. But who has completed the task or determined the goal to be attained and who has already realized it in a certain way? This question does not have meaning for numerical representation but has a fundamental meaning for philosophy, which realizes or effectuates things for the first time, which is first philosophy or radical commencement. Even if it is a pretension there, it is that of the meaning of philosophy

and its life, even of its “functioning,” undoubtedly a repetition but second or in relation to itself, an auto-repetition, thus finally first. Philosophy is first; engineered calculation or the machinic use of calculation (I am not speaking of arithmetic but of its usage in AI, a “usage” which should already attract the attention to the extent that philosophizable virtuality exists in this notion) imitates or stimulates something other than itself. Philosophy is not a performance, neither a simple machine notwithstanding the “desiring machines,” nor even a “behavior” despite the Verhalten of Heideggerian Dasein, which are intra-philosophical interpretations impregnated with metaphor, thus inseparable from language. If philosophy is not reduced to Consciousness and to its… “performances,” and shows itself all the more irreducible to a machine using calculation, non-philosophy radicalizes this irreducibility. As Lived-experience-without-life radicalizes Life (a regular transcendental theme of philosophy), the Performed-without-performation (and withoutperformance to a greater degree), radicalizes the concepts of performativity and performance. It is the symbol or the first name (already an axiom) that permits the very visible critique of sufficiency that impregnates the notion of performance, but without simply denying or entering into conflict with it.

Which Simulates Which, Non-philosophy or Machine? It is undoubtedly this refusal of the Consciousness antithetical/AI that gives the impression that non-philosophy is better prepared than philosophy to bind “amicable” (Heidegger) relations with calculation and more generally every form of automaticity. It can appear as an attempt to save philosophy against or “from” its traditional adversaries, but it is there only a consequence and the attempt at the solution of the antithetical is an effect, not a cause or a motive of non-philosophy. The resistance that critiques nonphilosophy in philosophy quite exceeds that of philosophy in cognitivism. But it must also give itself the most enlarged concept of philosophy in order to grasp the force and the resistance, perhaps the source, of the continuous or the analogical. Let us attempt to uncover the reason behind this largest proximity and what makes us avoid believing in an apparently possible computing reduction of non-philosophy. The Performed does not define itself by the saying-doing couple in the style of linguistic performativity, but as that which determines in-the-last-identity the mixture of performation and the performed. This type of Real seems in the first manner to require ridding ourselves of philosophy so that it only rids ourselves at best of Consciousness, and thus be able to simulate the machine or simply the Unconscious. We do not say easily that philosophy simulates the machine, but we are more easily tempted to say it of non-philosophy. It is that the Performed or Man-in-person seems to be a moot point, an ontological or even formal void, or a blank screen. Hence the impression that nonphilosophy is an automatism and above all a machine. But nothingness or even the void can be defined ontologically, by the Performed. Non-consistency is capital; it is no more Nothingness than Being but determines their mixture; it is non-nothingness, the (non-) One such that it applies itself equally to non-being, i.e. to nothingness. That it is a “negative condition” or sine qua non does not make it a positive essence (= that without which); it is a non-essence, a non-(that without which), which determines thus in this

way, but as a negative condition, necessary but without anything to bring about a positive predicate in the material and in its positivity. The cause is positively or philosophically absent, but in order to withdraw from it this positivity, not to relegate it to nothingness. It is absent as activity and passivity, insofar as they are mixed. Can we speak of a negative acting? No more than of a positive acting. Even the positive and the negative couple are not satisfactory if we claim to create them from a usage of predicate and apophantic definition. This “negative” trait is thus not itself anything positive in general but is positive, if we may say, in its kind. Of the real cause, thus, we can say that, it either acts or does not act (neither is their synthesis or their “at the time,” cf. Derrida)—it is its nonconsistency—determining in every way the mixture of the acting and the non-acting. “To determine” is to put forward or to imprint “negatively,” in philosophy and under any positive material condition, real identity. It appears to me that this way of thinking, which undoubtedly can seem to bring together by its apparent dogmatism non-philosophy and a certain scientific argumentation, is foreign both to philosophy and to science. This effect explicitly extends itself to this way of thinking in the subject-Stranger. The clone, i.e. the transcendental phenomenon, is structured like the One (of) philosophy, being as uni-lateral Identity. This structure renders the clone foreign to philosophy at the outset in a self that is constructed at least on two basic sides. The One itself does not have sides, contrary to what M. Henry, who makes it a transcendental Ego, posits; the Identity-clone has a single side, philosophy in itself possess it or thinks itself as 2/3. The trait of stranger-hood [étrangèreté] no longer has anything to do with an otherness or a transcendence simply opposed to philosophy. There is a transcendence of two sides, necessarily in order that there be a certain efficacy or that the clone stand out clearly on and in the transcendence of the World. But the two transcendences (which obviously contain correlative immanence) are heterogeneous structures, the philosophical in itself is bi-facial, the cloned uni-facial. A machine is always bi-facial in each of its “parts” and effects, and hence multi-facial. The machine tends towards autonomy and wants to think itself as philosophy does, making a success of its tour de force; it pushes autonomy as far away as possible and stumbles on the manufacturer agent of the machine, but gets nearer to non-philosophy in so far as it has a presupposition. The idealistic argument according to which machines can build other machines does not, despite appearances, forget that a first constructor, an anthropomorphic inventor of the first machine, is necessary, but it can always hope to reduce it in turn to a component inseparable from a continuous “manmachine system,” obviously at the risk of inciting protests from the rival party of Consciousness. On the other hand, it “forgets” something else, that the man-machine systems tend toward the auto-dissolution of all their internal distinctions and toward inherent nihilism, and that if this phenomenon is only underlying, it is because there exists an instance capable of re-determining them and re-launching them, so to speak. It is necessary to distinguish an absolute commencement, relative-absolute of the manmachine circuit and which disappears in the system and a radical commencement, a first techno-logy or a non-technology, a human subject in-the-last-identity but existing according to variables which are technical discoveries: therefore, a human subjectivity but co-determined by the forms and the style of various technologies. This argument is apparently too simple and formal, but here there is also an antithetical of technology between those who wish for a first anthropological commencement of the tool-circuit, a human agent, and those who, like Leibniz, infinitely prolong the circuit up to a God-

machine or a universe-machine. Non-philosophy resolves this antithetical between the constructive man of consciousness and the machine of machines, by suggesting that its meaning is purely apparent, indeed hallucinatory, and by relating it unilaterally to Manwithout-machine, who determines a thought-machine as a clone of the techno-logical mixture. In other words, the hypotheses on the origin and specific power of the machine rest upon the metaphysical order, and thus their solution is not within our scope. Against Theoreticism Theoreticism is not to be confused with the program, which is non-philosophy supposedly completed or in a stable state, the material of non-philosophy. What we put in the program is variable provided that it has the variance-and-invariance of philosophy. The rules and procedure of unilateral duality are fixed once the material itself is given and fixed, since it intervenes in the formulation of rules (which always have a concrete aspect). Under this condition of material fixedness, non-philosophy is indeed a machine or regularly transforms a given material into a given product, and as a result can seem like a program that simply awaits its execution. It is even a human machine or lived and determined in-the-last-instance by Man. Yet there is then something bizarre, close to science-fiction in this concept, as if a machine in good and due form, imposed on a technological circuit, has been transplanted not onto a Consciousness but onto Man-inperson. Non-philosophy is no longer this monster obtained by the synthesis of technology and the Real. Not to mention that the once and for all material fixation is a return to a philosophical gesture that equally fixes in turn and thus renders the Real transcendent. All is lost, but this would be a joke of science-fiction, “radical” in some way. As a matter of fact, the material varies, and with it the rules of the unilateral duality in their formulation, only if a transcendental indifference and equivalence of the materials are posited, which suppose a radical immanent Real. When transcendence is the unique principle, the contingency of the material disappears and the process becomes motionless in a new circle, in the argument or the philosophical doctrine. It is necessary to set against the “once and for all” of philosophy (cf. Deleuze) the “one time each time” of non-philosophy and its special “performativity.” It is lived experience or the Real in its radical identity that one time each time determines (without creating) the material (and its invariable form) and from it clones a subject. Thus the most “singular” identity now is said of totality or wholes, therefore also of invariant phenomena (because it is of them), rendering them foreign to the philosophical and technological economy. Non-philosophy is a machine necessarily specified or even “singularized” (identified) as machine by what here “enters” information, which, necessitated, comes to it in fact from its “negative” cause. Unilateral duality is indeed an invariant structure, but we must distinguish in this formulation between the effect of invariance that proceeds from the surreptitious or imperceptible fixation of a philosophical vocabulary with its horizon of potentiality (an invariance-artifact), and a more profound invariance that reduces itself in-the-lastinstance to the identity-in-identity of the cause. As if (it is an effect or an objective appearance) the invariance of non-philosophy vanished here, became elusive, and were no longer even identifiable and recognizable than through the invariance of formphilosophy and its content of terms or its “semantics.”

It is difficult under these conditions to make a program of non-philosophy in the computing sense. Or in that case it is a one time each time program, the transcendental identity or the clone of the Program. Every chain of causes and effects (Real + DLI) is contaminated by transcendental contingency (which comes from the Real) that affects the variant-invariant form of philosophy (with, in addition, the contingency of the last philosophizable, empirical thing). The formulations given of non-philosophy until now, for example here at present, if they are objective through and through in a given moment, can give the impression that it is a matter of a program to execute, a theoretical normalization of non-philosophy by the philosophical posture. This program‟s objective appearance is not its essence, only its reification or its mundanization in a T1 moment. If the given worldly or historical time is posited as the essentially determinant affair, then philosophy returns through its intermediary. This is a contemplation of practice, with the latter always one time each time in its transcendental identity, but its contemplation denies or defies the character of the material‟s radical-transcendental contingency. Syntax and material are already inseparable in philosophy (it is the transcendental that is the feature of philosophy), and if this connection seems to release itself in non-philosophy, it is perhaps an illusion, because the independent cause of all the material it renders contingent made an imposed or forced negative necessity of this contingence. We cannot separate or isolate pure, formal, and algorithmically manipulable rules; non-philosophy only has an algorithmic aspect (a transformed material) of machine or even of automaton, and this is indeed a machine but determined in-the-last-instance by Man.

Original Translation © Christopher Eby

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