Life as Art
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Life as Art

Nomads in Dystopia 6

Life on the Periphery of Global Techno-Capital

Image by Kathy Büscher from Pixabay

Duration and Intuition

Capital and technology are rhizomatic, but when raised to the transcendent in the name of human progress, they become life denying, not life affirming.

But the striations that would make capital and technology transcendent can be deterritorialized if we are able to break through the spell of the scientific determinism of pleasure and pain, and know the freedom and creativity of duration and intuition.

The critical freedom borne out of the will to power, which knows desire as overflowing in productivity and creativity, is the escape route from the universality of world capital and technology.

Duration and intuition empower a line of flight for those who would tread the path of nomads on the periphery.

Freewill in Creativity

Freewill exists in duration and intuition, which are our connection to the will to power that runs through all of life, the virtual and the actual.

Techno-capital can influence our feelings and sensibilities, pleasure and pain, but the freedom of the virtual, the return of pure difference, is the only immanent force in the universe.

Connection with pure creativity can stand up to a transcendence that would displace life with information.

A new naturalism can defy techno-capital abstraction and distraction, pervasive control and the displacement of all of life.

To Become Minoritarian

But how?

By exercising the active force of pure difference that resides within us and connects us with each other and the environment.

To become a minoritarian is to follow a line of flight away from the nameless, faceless majority, the axiom of exchange value, the abstraction of technology.

By embracing the eternal return of difference, we are empowered to reject the transcendence of techno-capital. We break free from desire as lack, desire as want of exchange value, and the distraction of technology, and return to our active force of creativity.

To become minor is to embrace pure difference and reject identity, the latter thrown upon us by a society that controls via pleasure and pain.

It is to unplug oneself and go offline.

Kafka the Minoritarian

Franz Kafka was a minoritarian.

The Trial is not about guilt and sin, and transcendent unknowable law. It is facing the labyrinth head on, positively engaged in a hyper-realism, exercising active force, the will to power.

Kafka embraces immanent reality and takes on the role of nomad, riding lines of flight, finding new connections that counter absurdity.

He deterritorializes the striations he explores. He embraces the power to become.

A Nomadic Ethic

A nomadic ethic embraces and affirms the vital forces of life. To be a nomad is to unplug technology and capital, and plug into real active force.

Becoming nomadic is becoming immanent, becoming natural, becoming intuitive, becoming creative, becoming minor, becoming democratic, becoming revolutionary.

A nomadic ethic is a political ethic through and through.

How do we live a nomadic political physiology in the context of a liberal democratic framework susceptible to the specter of universal overcoding and instantaneous control?

We do so through practical engagement in a deterritorialization and reterritorialization of the abstractions and distractions brought on by techno-capital.

By disengaging with technology, and exercising minoritarian activism to guide technological advance; by striating the very forces that would abstract us from our will to power.

By opposing a world abstracted in terms of control via pleasure and pain, holding it up for what it is: that which separates us from active force, desire as productivity.

Focus on Nature

To fight the axiom of techno-capital is to oppose the norm of human progress, man over nature. It is to disarm capital and technology by placing them back in the immanent field, just another link on the plane, and not an overriding axiom that places itself within all other connections.

To view life as nothing more than information, biochemical algorithms, is an abstraction from the immanent experience of life.

As an abstracting force, it only has power so long as someone is listening; it neither creates nor produces anything.

We topple the axiom of techno-capital by returning our focus to nature, the planet, defense of the ecosystem, the return of pure creativity; by de-centering the needs of mankind, and promoting broader perspectives.

Radical Freedom

Belief in the transcendence of techno-capital is nothing more than another universal philosophy of the end, of the totality of information, of dystopian perfection. But history unfolds open ended.

There is radical freedom in the universe, never a prescription that stops time as duration.

Politics is no longer about left and right, or minority groups, or political correctness, or progress.

Politics is about our environment, local government, a check on global capital and technological abstraction.

To exercise critical freedom is to act in aid of protecting the planet; this is the freedom of becoming, this is process, this is defense of the open and new, connectivity, virtuality.

A Naturalist Ethic of Becoming

An ethics of becoming is naturalist in the broad sense, it is about all forms of life and all interpretations of life, including interpretations of life as information only, but at all times immanent and in the field, never transcending the universe.

Disconnect with technology in order to reconnect with life. Go to the beach, the sea, the forest, the mountains.

To become minoritarian today is to actively engage with the only issue that really matters and relates to all others: the biosphere.

This is a narrative; but it is an open and creative narrative that affirms life, the normativity of the natural.

Fulfillment in the Natural Ability to Create

We ride lines of flight on the periphery, become-animal, become-plant, become-earth, in order to find our minor selves, our pure difference. Then we re-engage with the liberal state, and deterritorialize.

We cut through the striations that would undermine the will to power. And reconstruct the state in the name of critical freedom.

For the time being, the liberal state is the anatomy we have to work with to propagate a physiology of becoming. It may not always be the form of government that comes the closest to enabling a life of becoming.

But for now, it is our best hope for pushing forward a life affirming movement, beyond man and the organic. It is our best hope to affirm life, act in aid of life, act with love.

From within the liberal democracy, to live a life of fulfillment, we simply must do the natural:

Become democratic in a Deleuzian sense: engage with our inherent ability to affect and be affected, and to connect and disconnect; and engage politically in a manner that reflects a process of the return of pure difference, pure creativity.

To live a life of fulfillment in the social and political sense is to live life on the edge:

To commit to and engage with all of the becomings in nature, and evolve; and to reject and deterritorialize all that is reactive, and thus avoid unnecessary extinction.

I hope you enjoyed this article. Thanks for reading!

Tomas

Please join my email list here or email me at tomas@tomasbyrne.com.

Excerpt from my forthcoming book, Becoming: A Life of Pure Difference (Gilles Deleuze and the Philosophy of the New) Copyright © 2021 by Tomas Byrne. Learn more here.

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Tomas Byrne

Tomas Byrne

Jagged Tracks Music, Process Philosophy, Progressive Ethics, Transformative Political Theory, Informed Thrillers, XLawyer tomas@tomasbyrne.com