Facing the Enjoyment of the Other

There was a plenus to belong to India. We could enjoy it’s fullness and become fully Indian. But something stands between us and this original fullness. This something is Other. It disrupts our enjoyment of the plenus. It in fact has a castrating effect. It introduces what we can call by drawing inspiration from Jacques Lacan the name of the father. Maybe we have refect on a pointed question that Lacan himself had asked: Can you bear the life that you have? Lacan is not talking about daily chores of getting up, doing things, caring for people etc. He is talking about excess life. This excess life is the apparatus of enjoyment which is called jouissance. Lacan says that Jouissance is beyond the pleasure principle. It deals with superabundant vitality. Because, this enjoyment goes beyond the pleasure principle, Lacan calls it backhanded enjoyment. It reflects in the desire which is mimetic and aims at catching the jouissance of the other.

While each of us wish to enjoy excess life and therefore have our our secret jouissance, (mode of enjoyment), we as a society seem to manifest a desire to chase the desire of the Other. Post-2014 we seem to chasing the enjoying of our religious other. Jouissance is that extra we want to add to our life. We know that extra kick does not come from the enjoyment of our daily life. We seem to want to rob the enjoyment or jouissance of the other. This is why jouissance is not just excessive but is also transgressive and hence requires prohibition. Only prohibition trickles our desire to enjoy. It takes us to transgress the prohibition. Jouissance therefore is chasing of a prohibited fruit felt as enjoyed by the other. This is perhaps, why we may say that today we are entangled in a kind of theft of enjoyment of the other.

There maybe there are other reasons to explain our entrapment into Mandir/Masjid politics of hate for so long. We seem to be chasing that surplus life. We desire an extra kick of enjoyment. The site for this jouissance is a mimetic desire of the other. We are desiring the jouissance of the other . We have transgress in order to get this access to super vitality. Maybe just maybe the roots of the politics of hate that afflict us are in our chase to mimic the jouissance of our other, seeing a Mandir at site of a Masjid is not just seeking to put history right. It is site where the majority community is trying to seek the extra or excess of life. It is perhaps the site that makes it possible for the majority community to chase the desire of the minorities to chase their jouissance.. These sites paradoxically double up as spaces that legitimate a sense of being sites that robbed the religious or spiritual enjoyment of the majority people. Therefore they are becoming the sites of theft of the enjoyments of the majority community.

The sites of spiritual life or spritual jouissance therefore have become sites of theft of enjoyment. This sense of a theft of enjoyment afflicts all communities in India. Thr politics of the majority community appears to rest in the loss or something robbed in the past while that of the minority community is a disturbing sense of facing theft of the enjoyment in the present. Therefore, the major issue for our country is a resolution to this sense of theft of our enjoyment. India appears needs this resolution of facing a sense of theft of our enjoyment. If we cannot resolve this issue we may not be able to riggle out of problems that afflict us all.

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Hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue.

- Fr Victor Ferrao