By Jill Marsden
This ebook explores the imaginitive probabilities for philosophy created by way of Nietzsche's sustained mirrored image at the phenomenon of ecstasy. From The beginning of Tragedy to his experimental "physiology of art," Nietzsche examines the classy, erotic, and sacred dimensions of rapture, hinting at how an ecstatic philosophy is learned in his elusive doctrine of everlasting go back. Jill Marsden pursues the consequences of this legacy for modern Continental idea through analyses of such voyages in ecstasy as Kant, Schopenhauer, Schreber, and Bataille.
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Additional info for After Nietzsche: Notes Towards a Philosophy of Ecstasy
The ‘ever self-renewing drive’ to artistic ‘play’ calls ‘new worlds into life’ but such an ebb and ﬂood of forms is ‘invisible to the common human eye’ (PTAG 7). Not quite insensate perhaps but barely capable of deviating from its repertoire of project and plan (‘being-for-self’), the herd beast has become progressively immune to the magic and majesty of great art – at best able only to perceive the ‘play of the signiﬁer’. Yet for Nietzsche, those kinds of art that communicate a world-altering power supply a vital conduit to the ever-renewing streams of becoming that the civilizing process breeds out.
The will to survive is not trivial but it only attains sovereignty when tested against the lure of self-ruin. As an exorbitant index of sacred desire, ‘incorporation [Einverleibung]’ connotes an openness to the ‘horizon of the inﬁnite’ predicated on the thought of dissolvant boundaries. In other words, the receptivity to the unknown that is implied by this process of ‘becoming-body’ is not mediated by a pre-existent interiority: the body which incorporates is itself created by incorporation. Whatever is taken in ‘from the outside’ forms the ‘inside’ as such.
Every force is related to other forces which either obey or command: ‘What deﬁnes a body is this relation between dominant and dominated forces. Every relationship of forces constitutes a body[…] as soon as they enter into a relationship’ (NP 40). Consequently, the ‘being’ of force is plural and is the prior condition of conceptual determination. This is not a ‘given’ sensory manifold because it is only the contingent relations between actual forces that constitute the ‘being of the sensible’. Deleuze proposes that ‘in a body the superior or dominant forces are known as active and the inferior or dominated forces are known as reactive’ (NP 40).