The Death of Philosophy

What has philosophy done to us? has it led us astray ? What has this friendship/ love with/of wisdom given us and our world. Could our world be different? If so how? Perhaps to usher in another world , philosophy has to die. The paradox is that all these above questions are philosophical. Perhaps it is time to question philosophy? There are those like Karl Marx who suspect philosophy. To them philosophy is merely a escapist theory. This position is indeed an exaggeration. Anti-philosophy stance is also philosophical. Therefore, death of philosophy is also its birth. Philosophy in this sense is deathless. It refuses to die.

But philosophy has also led to suffering and injustice. Humanity, life and our planet earth as suffered because of dominating, anthropocentric philosophies. Hence, we have to subject it to scrutiny. It has to be crucified to let it rise again and usher in new emancipative ways of being human in our world. This does not mean that we are questioning the salutary promise of philosophy. In fact , the idea to put philosophy on trial is to sharpen and fructify its salutary character. To do this we may have to re-think philosophy and let it die. We have to literarily dig its grave and wait for it to rise.

Perhaps Fancois Laurelle’s idea of non-philosophy may be of some help in this task. Non-philosophy challenges philosophy’s slavery to logos which restricts the embrace of philosophy. Non-philosophy is generic. It excludes no domain of thought, being and non-being. it is not determined to any Other or limit. It faithful to the real not by its exact picturing ability but thinking in accordance to its indivisibility. It is the most humane thinking. It is not ordered by anything else . In other words it does have to subsume everything under the logos. Thus, it does not have to use reductive lens like Life, History, Power, God, Text, Being etc. This resistance of fragmenting the real under the regimes of logos can open another way of doing philosophy. Laurelle calls this mode of thinking non-philosophy.

The West thought through logos. It sought fidelity to logos by ordering thinking to the One. This ordering to the One is assumed as an apriori condition of logos philosophy. To do this it has to deal with duality that it synthesize through dialectical thinking or thinking through the assertion of difference. But difference cannot be thought in isolation. Difference cannot be viewed as opposite of identity. Emanuel Levinas seems to be trapped in this duality. Given the merits of his thoughts in preventing us from eating up all difference into sameness, we still have to view difference in a radical way. We have the challenge to transcend Emanuel Levinas. He is not simply taken a given to us. Nothing is simply apriori. Levinas has rightly told us not to totalize sameness. Although, he infinitizes otherness , still by framing otherness into a form of infinity, he seems to be also totalizing difference.

To overcome toltalizing difference without also subsuming it into sameness, we have to thoroughly relationalize difference. This reduces difference to non-difference. Now non-difference is not the opposite of difference but is inclusive of difference as well as identity. This means non-difference is not ordered by logos or One. It is ordered by in-logos or in-One. All being is inter-being and not Being in absolute isolation. In fact, everything is in an in inter-relations , humans included. We can at the most think of humans as One-in-One way of being-with each other.

The in-One or the One-in-One in no way is threatened by what One is not. It is not oppositional thinking. It does not mark its other nor derives its identity by othering its Other. It is not totalitarian. This way of thinking takes philosophy beyond meta-philosophical thinking. It attempts to bring together the creative impulse as well as critical drive of reason. Nonphilosophy is a non-totalized way of philosophizing/ non-philosophizing . It is not summing or adding up philosophies. It is philosophizing or non-philosophizing without borders. This means philosophy is dead and nonphilosophy has taken its place. Non-philosophy being philosophy of the in-One, seems to be close to advaitic tradition in India.

The death of philosophy has brought about death of all other systems of knowledge attached to it. This means, metaphysics has given way to nonmetaphysics, anthropology has given way to nonanthroplogy , ethics to nonethics, theology to nontheology etc. All these disciplines are thought in-One and not as autonomous specialist disciplined works which submit to the regime of One. This means these disciplines are inter-disciplines. They remain and grow in superposition of separate but unopposed frameworks. They follow the logic of juxtaposition or more precisely quantum physics. This is why there are certainly doublings, thriplings … in them that require double readings.

This means there is philosophy in nonphilosophy or metaphysics in nonmetaphysics or theology in non-theology and more. This is the logic of in-One. The One is not in isolation but is dynamically embedded in a ‘ quantum field’. Maybe we will need to follow quantum logic to develop these new inter-disciplines. This new disciplines would certainly take us into the domain of post-humanities. We need t take this leap into post-humanities to save ourselves and our common home our planet earth. We are entangled in the universe. We have the challenge to understand our entanglement , appreciate it and learn to live with it.

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