From infinite stupidity;
The ghost overhead
Tugs some strings.
I remember having a conversation with H. Moss (of Falkoner—in all reality, I may be reiterating this fact a little too much, but it goes without saying Falkoner is the greatest fucking band ever) back in 2003 when Falkoner broke up (sad). Moss went through this strange depression citing “[he doesn’t] belong here.”
I took this to mean, “here,” to be the world.
Right there, I stopped him and the conversation went thus:
“Your depression is likely due to the material solipsism us as human beings are forced to bear.”
“What do you mean?”
“I simply mean the neural pathways which make up the human capacity to perceive are encased in the brain. There is no way to escape this fact.”
“How sad: to think we are only brains.”
“No, we’re not just brains. We’re perceiving machines. Without something to perceive, some stimulus, the machine does not work. We only feel our own emotions and our own valuations, but that means there needs to be something to be perceived and valuated.”
“You can’t prove that.”
“Material reacts to material. Material does not, nor can it react to immateriality.”
“There needs to be an objective force dictating that. Something beyond the material to determine, or rather limit that material’s perceptible qualities. There needs to be a force of differentiation between the objects.”
“But what if all those disparate objects are really just components of greater objects? Their reactions are individual, but in such a way as to propagate a larger object. The sense of listlessness inside of that greater object (call it world, or nature, or whatever) is the individual succumbing to the power of something greater as a matter of material necessity.”
“So that greater force is what? God?”
“Not necessary, but the sum of individual parts. It’s no less potent than god (or what our limited capacity for reason can comprehend as ‘god’) but its power is not one that is wholly dictatorial. Rather, its power is contingent upon the function—or flux—of its individual parts. The smaller is a part of the bigger, works for the bigger, but the smaller depends on the individual-centric momentum of the bigger which is a function of the bigger.”
“So then a ghost pulls that strings—immateriality conforms materiality.”
“What makes the bigger ‘immaterial?’”
“The fact it is the summation of smaller parts means it exists as a result of the action of individual parts. Action is more a change through time rather than an actual object.”
“Ah, but change is enacted for material purposes, no? Isn’t change the material becoming something else? To say objects can change means there needs to be a point of objective departure—a starting point from which we can measure that change. But, that would require us going back to the dawn of materiality which would be the total equity of qualities: there would be no differentiation. It would be static. Action is the force of change in objects which are constituted, materially, by change. Materiality, therefore, is a changing action. Materials are made of change.”
The conversation went in this direction for some time.
Moss’ statement in this ‘prophecy’ is one of the embrace of emergence wherein “[i]ntelligence derives from infinite stupidity” (ln. 1-2). This statement, I believe, is the cure Moss sought out—though not well enough obviously (he committed suicide, June 6th, 2006). It’s a cure only in the sense that the limitations of the small create the big. The ‘emergentistic’ element as represented by the marionettist “ghost” (ln. 3) comes from the material summation of individual parts. However, Moss (correctly) surmises this “ghost” (ibid.) possesses a subjective quality different from that of the individual parts—which all play a role in the forward movement of the “ghost.”
So, is it actually immaterial? This “ghostly” subjectivity?
Not exactly. The immateriality derives from this notion that nothing can be greater than the individual part. That’s a dangerous misconception that summation implies a force divining action of the individual parts or vice versa that individual parts divine the sum. Neither determines the other, rather, they co-determine by doubling.
The single is always the whole as it manifests in the single. The “ghost” marionettist is always its marionettes from which the intelligence is determined by the material limitations of the parts. But, because the “ghost” signifies change, then the parts must go along with it, morphing so as to adapt to the differentiation of place and circumstance.