File spoon-archives/lyotard.archive/lyotard_2001/lyotard.0106, message 69

Subject: Re: Tantalizing times - arguing for atheism....
Date: Sat, 16 Jun 2001 17:19:05 +0800

Hi Hugh,
> Maybe we should say "understand the sublime, or the unknown," rather than
> religion.

What do you define as the sublime?
Is it predominately experiential?
Is there a unitary definition that incorporates subjective interpretations
of that which is generating the experience?
Is that which you call sublime sort of like an acutely affective experience
(i.e. that which does not require the binary logic of the social for some
level of understanding)?

>So let us imagine ourselves "outside" the so-called real world, Cosmos,
>Universe(s), observing all that "is" - Including all that is to scientists,
>atheists - the "facts" we obey to survive

But we cannot escape everyday life, there is no panoptic point of view.
We can only reference ourselves relative to the world around us. Like in
astrophysics and how they place the Earth, for there is no centre to the
universe (or if there is no one has told me:).

>From Nietzsche's point of view, there is no exit from the labyrinth of
>interpretation; everything is 'interpreted through and through'.

There is only essential relativism, that is what is shared across all of
humanity. Perhaps, then that is why  the focus on the 'sublime'? For it is
(normatively) a trans-cultural experience... it doesn't need to be
referenced, for it can't be communicated, only experienced. It can't be
communicated because the boundaries of language can only communicate about
the experience, rather than the experience itself.
Yes? Perhaps? Um?

Glen Fuller


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