Human life is defined between diverse extremes: birth and death, nothing and infinity. Theater tries to stage something of this between-being and bring it out of its recess in everyday life. What can be called a metaxological philosophy can illuminate this between-condition. “ Metaxu ” is the Greek word for “between,” while “ logos ” can mean an accounting, or reasoning, or wording. A metaxological philosophy of the theatre would look on it as staging the between . Can we say (...) that the theatrical stage, as an intermedium of human communication, is a distinctive wording of the between? Can a metaxological philosophy throw light on what is staged on it, in and through it? In light of this philosophy of the metaxu, reflections are offered on essential themes such as: the space of the stage, the intermediation of inter-action, the shaping of plot, the openness of endings, the tragic and the comic, the sacred and the profane. (shrink)
There is a sense of doing justice prior to the juxtaposition of theory and practice, accounting for an ontological vulnerability prior to both social power andsocial vulnerability. Justice in the sense of “being true” involves fidelity to truth that we neither possess nor construct, preceding all efforts to enact justice. The charge to be just precedes any just act. There is a “patience of being,” or a receiving of being before acting, which we must then actively take up. All this (...) has implications for the practices of philosophy, including transcending the will to power by not clinging to one’s own place in History. The philosopher stands back and enters the void space of the human soul which is vulnerable, both terrorized and capable of terrorizing. This void is a “porosity of the soul” rather than pure nothingness. Though it is no particular project or activity, it allows all openness, receiving, and self-transcendence, and out of it comes the practical energy that feeds activity. The poverty of philosophy means relinquishing meaningless activity of construction in a purposeless universe by a willingness to be nothing, understanding the patience of being before servility and sovereignty, and the justice beyond them. (shrink)
This article explains some of the major intentions the author had in writing the book Hegel’s God: A Counterfeit Double? It especially focuses on the question of transcendence, both with respect to the question of God as such, as well as Hegel’s option for a version of holistic immanence. It spells out some of the details of the book itself, and explains the guiding thread of the counterfeit double. The texts of Hegel may be saturated with the word “God,” but (...) in Hegel’s dialectical-speculative reconfiguration of God, what God comes to signify is devoid of the strong transcendence we find in Biblical monotheism. The strengths and deficiencies of Hegel’s position are explored. (shrink)
Seeking to renew an ancient companionship between the philosophical andthe religious, this book’s meditative chapters dwell on certain elementalexperiences or happenings that keep the soul alive to the enigma of the divine.William Desmond engages the philosophical work of Pascal, Kant, Hegel,Nietzsche, Shestov, and Soloviev, among others, and pursues with a philosophicalmindfulness what is most intimate in us, yet most universal: sleep, poverty,imagination, courage and witness, reverence, hatred and love, peace and war.Being religious has to do with that intimate universal, beyond (...) arbitrarysubjectivism and reductionist objectivism.In this book, he attempts to look at religion with a fresh and open mind,asking how philosophy might itself stand up to some of the questions posed toit by religion, not just how religion might stand up to the questions posed to it byphilosophy. Desmond tries to pursue a new and different policy, one faithfulto the light of this dialogue. (shrink)
This paper offers two related refl ections on the questions of metaphysics after critique. The first is an analysis of the project of critique since Kant and its influence on the disputed status of metaphysics. It explores the theoretical and practical aspects of this by claiming that an understanding of thinking as negativity, whether in Hegelian form as determinate negation or in more radical deconstructive forms, lies at the heart of this disputed status. Not least, the relation of philosophy to (...) religion and to previous practices of metaphysics is at stake. The paper argues that there is more at work in critique than critique can account for through itself. In a second reflection, the arguments bearing on this “more” are explored in a more constructive spirit. On the basis of an account of the sources of metaphysical thinking beyond the resources of critique alone, the lineaments of what is needed for a metaxological metaphysics after critique are sketched. (shrink)
This is a response to issues raised by Martin De Nys in his article, “Conceiving Divine Transcendence,” dealing with Hegel’s God: A Counterfeit Double? The response focuses especially on the question of religious representation, the issue of the autonomy of philosophy, the issue of creation, the actual practice of Hegel in the Lectures on the Philosophy of Religion, and Hegel as a contemporary resource for philosophical theology.
This is a response to issues raised by Peter Hodgson in his article “Hegel’s God: Counterfeit or Real?” dealing with Hegel’s God: A Counterfeit Double? The response focuses especially on Hodgson’s identification of Desmond’s view with that of Kierkegaard, on the question of whether Hegel is an agapeic thinker, and on the issue of the contemporary relevance of Hegel for theological reflection.
This is a response to issues raised by Stephen Houlgate in his article “Hegel, Desmond, and the Problem of God’s Transcendence,” dealing with Hegel’s God: A Counterfeit Double? The response focuses especially on the hermeneutical finesse we need in reading Hegel on religion, on the nature of “release” in Hegel, on the need for an agapeic God, and on the differences between Hegel’s speculative philosophy and Desmond’s metaxological approach to the practice of philosophy.
This volume comprises studies written by prominent scholars working in the field of German Idealism. These scholars come from the English speaking philosophical world and Continental Europe. They treat major aspects of the place of religion in Idealism, Romanticism and other schools of thought and culture. They also discuss the tensions and relations between religion and philosophy in terms of the specific form they take in German Idealism, and in terms of the effect they still have on contemporary culture. The (...) authors consider figures such as Kant, Fichte, Hegel, and Jacobi. The book will prove very informative to researchers and teachers working in the fields of philosophy, philosophy of religion, and classical German philosophy. (shrink)
Much has been written on love and friendship, but not a lot on the nature of an enemy, in a manner analogous to the nature of love itself. To understand something about what it means to be an enemy is not at all self-evident. And if we do not know what an enemy is, do we really know what a friend or a lover is? An understanding of what it means to be an enemy might offer us something like the (...) reverse negative of love or friendship. From holding the reversed negative to the light perhaps we can also gain some sight of the "unreversed" original. The article discusses the fact that we live life as something that offers us a certain affirmative delight in the "to be" as good. It explores how this is changed in relation to different forms of threat. It situated the nature of an enemy in terms of the equivocal constitution of the human being as passio essendi and conatus essendi. Different kinds of enemy are investigated by considering the "reversed negatives" of these four forms of love: self-affirming love, erotic love, philia, and agapeic love. (shrink)