I have created a new avant gardist genre of fiction called Philosophical fiction. Philosophical fiction is post-post modern fiction. Philosophical fiction departs from the conventional modes of storytelling. There are no stories to tell anymore. There is also no plot line.
By using the mode of Philosophical Fiction, I have created an oeuvre called the Guernica. Philosophical fiction has been heavily influenced by the art movement of Picasso that is Cubism. Philosophical Fiction also incorporates the rhythms of Jazz. Here I leave an excerpt from the novel Guernica:
“ Music is the highest form of existence the soul and heart of heaven. It’s a mystery to ponder as to how did rhythm and melody originate? Music is poetry for the body and lyric for the soul. I am fond of classical music, rock music, gospel, and country and jazz. Classical music opens the celestial food of the heavens. It’s a manna for the soul. The melody of the heavens is harmonious like the twinkle of the stars. Passion sinks deep into the soul and nurtures a lyric for the heart. Classical music is a passionate meditation for the soul. The heart chimes with the weather of love. Music is like making love to a woman. Time echoes a melody of the heart. Bach, Beethoven and Mozart are my favorites. The divine streak of God is found in classical music. Soul becomes mirth of joy. Passion becomes saturated into an oasis of love. God becomes gifted to the soul. Love and peace radiate as monuments of joy. Classical music is a symphony of becoming. Listening to rock music is altogether another experience. Rock music is Nietzsche’s Dionysian rhythm and beat. Hotel California you take me to the abyss of hell. You induce me to experience altered states of consciousness and sex. The body becomes a libidinal beat of a thrust. Rock music has borrowed heavily on metaphors of hell. Consciousness becomes a numb vehicle. The sliding of guitars, the clashing of drums, the reckless oeuvre of the organ and the tinsel cacophony of sound, all awaken a consciousness, a rhapsody to the meaning of life. Cocaine by Eric Clapton is another brilliant piece of art. But it’s all about Cocaine the horse. Smoke on the Water by deep purple makes weeds grow out of brains. Whatever you want by Status Quo plummets the body to a wine of ecstasy. Another favorite of mine is Lynard Skynard. Their mix of country rock and blues levitates the soul to a New-found-land of ecstasy. Sweet Home Alabama, yes, I am longing to come home. Free Bird by Lynard Skynard is a beautiful rendition of art. The song speaks of freedom. It’s an acoustic rendition. Rock music, you are a passionate soul and a vibrant body. Listening to rock music doped makes music for the soul. Listening to Jazz is altogether another experience. Time slows down and becomes a metaphor of pulchritude. The breeze emanating from the saxophone is pure metaphoric joy. The gentle slide of the guitar is pure joy an art. The body becomes music of art. Soul transcends into a heavenly realm. Jazz is poetry’s music. How I love it when the Piano in Jazz plays fancy cords; the gentle rhythm of the symbols clanging is music for the body. Jazz slows down the body into a poetry of ecstasy. Listening to country music is nirvana for the soul. Country Roads by John Denver is a melody so moving so rich in the art of moving the art to make love to it. I am transported to the world of art. Let your love flow by Bellamy Brothers is a pathos of rich sentiment. My soul becomes enriched with the lyrics of beauty. The soul incarnates as a flower in country music. Beauty chimes in bells of melodies. Country music touches the heart and soul. Music moves the soul to pulchritude. The rich sentiment of poetry is pierces the soul into an art while listening to country music. Listening to Gospel is a poetic epiphany. I love Allan Jackson’s country Gospel especially his songs: Are you washed in the blood, I will fly away, Amazing Grace, and the Old Rugged Cross. His voice is rich in the cadence of art. Gospel songs speak straight to the soul. There’s an art of vibrant beauty. Passion builds the heart of richness. The soul becomes a heaven of beauty a lyric of passionate edification. Music the art of the heavens, the lyric of the soul, the harmony of God, the passion of art, the richness of poetry, the time of passion. Music moves the body to dance. Music makes the heart to sing. Music makes the mind to flutter like a butterfly. Time in music becomes pulchritude of beauty. Music is the soul of love, the passion of love. How did melody and rhythm originate? It’s a mystery to contemplate. Jazz is the music of solitude. Rock music is the heaven of joy. Country music uplifts the soul. Gospel music speaks the love of God. Music, you are catharsis for the soul. You are beatific in the ethos of passion. Music is the soul of love, the edifice of beauty, the transcendence to a beauty of existence. God is the presence of art in music. We can pour our tears of sorrow and our tears of joy in music. Music is the poetry of ecstasy. Music is the flower of radiant beauty. All art should aspire to the condition of music. Music awakens the passions that lie deep in the soul. Music makes love to the body. Music makes the savage, a beautiful being for God. Deep is my passion for music. The strum of the guitar, the sliding of the cello in harmony, the clang of drums, the bellow of the saxophone all render in me countless joys of experience. I become edified lava. Music you rhythmic passion, you bliss of the soul, you harmony of metaphors, you epiphanies of love, you murmur the heart to an idyllic beat. Music, I sink into your passion, I meditate on your effulgence. My soul becomes cathartic, a poetry of becoming a song. Music hurls me to heaven and removes the bitterness of hell in me. I leave my ego behind and become one with the soul. Passions raise flags and epitomize emotions to the heaven’s highest realm. In music the soul is not bruised anymore.”
Philosophical Fiction has heavily borrowed the literary narrative of Streams of Consciousness. Philosophical fiction redefines aesthetics with the narrative incorporating the Baroque and the Blues. Philosophical fiction is the highest form, a novel can attain art. Various philosophical themes are examined through the literary motifs of art. Thus Philosophical fiction is a post-post modern, a poetic symphony of prose in narratives. In philosophical fiction the author and characters merge. Narratives in Philosophical Fiction draw heavily on the symbolism of tropes. Tropes are music in the language of poetry. Various themes of nature have been romanticized into an eclectic language of poetic prose. Philosophical fiction is a post-post modern adaption of the art of nouveau roman. The author in Philosophical fiction also indulges in the rich usage of the technique of the pastiche. Philosophical fiction uses the romantic language of the past with a postmodern fictional touch. Philosophical fiction is the art of impressionism of words, the art of cubist prose and the expressionism of the romantic. Philosophical fiction takes into account various philosophical themes and weaves them in a rich density of literary inter-textuality.
Problematizing truth is a methodological problem. Philosophy always asks the question: what is truth. Socrates used to play with truth, by probing his students with an endless play of questions and answers and finally shedding of the ritual of the question itself in sheer sophistry. But again the question remains: what is truth: is this the truth: what ought to be the truth. Instead of posing truth as a discourse, I would like to dialogue with truth.
Religions amalgamate truth into a cauldron of value, a relation to the supernatural. They make it out that truth is essential for salvation, eternal life, and all the metaphysical attributes, that separate the divine from the human. Now what can this type of truth be defined? Truth is separated from reason and undergoes the ritual, an enigma of the supernatural. For a non believer truth makes no sense. Theistic truth can’t be defined but only experienced as proclaimed by the mystics. Such a concept of truth can be delusional. Truth in the religious sense can be described as theistic-mania. However religious truth has been dismantled by structuralism and postmodernism. Truth for them is a play of signs, a playful connection between the signifier and the signified. Theology from a metaphysical frame work has been deconstructed, that is the Logos of Presence is an empty sign. But still believers of theism regard it as something fundamental.
How can we portray truth in the scientific realm? There are conjectural truths. For example the idea of the Big Bang is conjectural. But the concept of DNA is verifiable through the experimental. So also is the existence of subatomic particles. There are also other types of scientific truths, the inductive and the deductive. The inductive truth stems from premises that are true and leading to conclusions. For example: All men are mortal. Socrates is a Man. Therefore Socrates is mortal. This is an inductive truth. For deductive truth: the premises can be true or false. If they are true, they lead to the right conclusions. For example sugar dissolves in water and metal does not dissolve in water.
Next I would like to take the Hegelian concept of truth and that being, arriving at a thesis, then an antithesis and finally a synthesis. The problem of Hegel’s truth is that there might not be a synthesis. Let’s take communism as an example. The domination, corruption and violence attached to communism shifted its crux from the synthesis that Communism is right to an antithesis. The synthesis today at the level of political praxis is leanings of political philosophy to the dialectics of production and profit. Dialectical materialism has grown in its stature to opportunistic capitalism. The ideological apparatuses of the state control and monitor the individual secretly. Capitalism has shed its tentacles and has united societies into global corporations. Global corporations go even to the extent of funding democratic elections and bringing to victory candidates of their choice. Here truth becomes a choice of being a value as an economic entity. Truth becomes manipulated for affluent economic consumption.
Next I would like to explain truth from an ontological, phenomenological, psychoanalytic perspective. I am also going to incorporate postmodernism into my narrative. Ontology explains the structure of being, the presence of making the meaning of being. Postmodern philosophy has challenged the existence of presence of being. What I would like to say is that meaning is always being made. The processing of meaning through contents consciousness (phenomenology) is a dialectical process. We can call the making of meaning as processual ontology. Let’s take the concept of meaning psychoanalytically. The Philosopher Sartre has given the status of being as unlimited freedom. But psychoanalytically meaning of being remains conditioned to the ID, EGO and Super Ego. Raw passions are controlled by the EGO, family moorings, and the Super EGO, the laws of the society, what Lacan calls as: In the Name of the Law of the Father. A being has to tight rope walk on these three psychological attributes the ID, EGO and the Super Ego. A Nietzsche’s follower would in post-modern sense would say: sublimate the ID, transcend the Ego and the Subvert the Super Ego. By doing so, man can become the Übermensch or the over-man. Truth in the post modern sense depends on how well, you can sublimate the ID, transcend the Ego and subvert the Super Ego.
I have read Camus’ book ‘Myth of the Sisyphus’. And I started my introspection on Nihilism. The senseless, the absurd, the chaotic, have to be transformed by living a life of creative authentication. One way of overcoming Nihilism is through language. I adopt Nietzsche’s dictum: the will to power. Everyday experiences are transformed into metaphoric nuances. Nihilism for Nietzsche is the affirmation of the Dionysian. Ecstasy and rhythms are vibratory metaphors to transform life to a higher plane of existence. A nihilist would also like to experience altered states of consciousness. What are emotive characteristics of Nihilism? Affirmation, Negation, Possession, are various states where the individual exerts through creative anarchy. For a Nihilist democratic dialogism is a process through which inter-personal harmony is experienced. A nihilist has to transform life by overcoming suicide. What is affirmation? Affirmation is a cathartic-yes-ness of experience. Negation is an existential mantra, a nihiliation whereby an individual exorcises an intentional object or emotion from the core to the periphery of existence. The very root of possession is passion. The human body is built on the roots to appropriate. A nihilist does not believe in after life. He or she has to live the life to fullest while inhabiting the earth.
In this article I would like to focus on how we try to discern a metaphor. I would like to focus on the cognitional faculty associated with metaphors. Discerning a metaphor can be aesthetic, religious, secular, cultural-historical and philosophical.
A metaphor in common day language is an adornment of words where there occurs a comparison between things. For example: His thoughts are a flying saucer. It means that his thoughts are fanciful and unrealistic. This metaphor has only one effect on the reader which is a pure aesthetic one, one of pleasure.
Let’s look at another example: He is a shady night. Here the metaphor embodies a semantic concept, meaning that he is not a straight forward person. This semantic attribute is related to a particular emotional quality and there by casting its roots into the soil of judging human qualities.
But some metaphors go beyond the aesthetic. Let’s take a Biblical metaphor which is also simile: ‘You should have faith as a mustard seed’. A simile is also related to the metaphor and uses like or as. Here mustard seed takes a meaning of the supra-sensible realm, beyond the aesthetic. Faith becomes dichotomized into smallness and reliance on the super-natural. We can utilize its meaning in the secular sense as the tininess of faith for obtainment of a thing or with a religious tinge, having faith as small as a mustard seed and relying faith on a transcendental power. The hermeneutic meaning is left to the discernment of the reader.
Next I would like to take an example of a metaphor having political and historical connotations. For example: Fascism and Nazism have become religious entities of fanatic Islam in the contemporary geo-political world. Here the meaning becomes a thesis (far- right dictatorships), an antithesis (unfair barbarism and cruelty and the holocaust) and synthesis (the aim of fanatic Islam to create terrorism and also dominate the world). I am using Hegelian Philosophy here. The meaning of this metaphor bifurcates into cultural, political and historic roots and brings up a daunting similarity with the contemporary comparison.
Next I would like to analyze a metaphor from feminist philosophy. For example: We or they are gender twins. This refers to woman who does not like to be labeled as she or he. Being gender neutral and the same time having a gender is an accepted norm of conceptual democratic post-modern philosophy.
Thus in my readings of the metaphor, I have left its discernment as aesthetics, as the religious, as the semantic, as the secular, as the historical, cultural and the political and also the philosophical.
Sartre starts his philosophy by assuming states of consciousness. He starts his discourse by contradicting Descartes Philosophy of thought: Cogito Ergo Sum: I think therefore I exist. Sartre says that the consciousness of Descartes which thinks is a secondary consciousness or in Sartre’s Words: the consciousness of the for-Itself. For Sartre there’s a consciousness, a primary one which is an empty one called in-Itself. This Sartre calls as Pre-reflective Cogito. Now here lies the problem: the consciousness that Sartre posits as the in-itself is not really an empty vehicle, when we consider it in Freudian terms.
Now let’s take the theories of Freud relating to the mind. Freud is famous for his derivation of the Unconscious, ID, EGO and the Super Ego. The ID composes of primeval energies which according to Freud are libidinal. The Ego develops through the social environment and culture which an individual experiences. The Super Ego or in psychoanalyst Lacan’s words: in the name of the Father are the laws of the society which prohibits and restrains the individual from committing unlawful acts. Transgressing these laws would entail punishment. The unconscious according to Freud is a realm where the repressed exists.
In this article, I would like to synthesize the Consciousness of Sartre with theories of Freud. The consciousness which Sartre names as the primary consciousness or the in-itself is not really empty. It consists of the Freudian unconscious and also the Freudian Id or the libidinal energies. The unconscious manifests in Sartre’s for-itself consciousness as tongue slips and dreams. The libidinal energies too are experienced in the for-itself as sexual acts, as art. But when they are expressed they become subject to the democratic norms of the society. Art can be a medium through which the repressed can be given free reign. However the Super Ego present in the consciousness of the for-itself has certain taboos attached to it. Some taboos may be broken without punishment; for example adultery is not punishable by law and democracy allows consensual sex. But there are other taboos which cannot be violated. They are incest and murder. During times of their violation the Super Ego intervenes to punish the accused.
Sartre goes to an incredible extent with his existential philosophy to say that there are no inherent values or morals and it’s permissive for the individual to direct the consciousness of the for-itself permissively. Sartre claims that all acts of the for-itself are authentic responsibilities for the individual. Yes Sartre is right when he says we are condemned to be free. The Freudian Super Ego controls our Ego and the ID by imposing norms which are conducive for democracy. Unethical behavior can be democratically expressed through art. Violence, murder, incest all these are universal taboos which are not to be violated in an ethical democracy. There are exceptional individuals who have attained philosophical notoriety by their writings and life. For example let’s take Marquis De Sade who was fascinated with murder and eroticism. But his writings and life violate the democratic norm but can be discussed philosophically.
For Sartre, Ego was a state, but for Freud it’s an inbuilt mechanism housing the unconscious, ID, Ego and the Super Ego.
In conclusion I reiterate that the primary consciousness of Sartre, the in-itself comprises of the Freudian unconscious and the ID and Sartre’s consciousness of the for-itself is not entirely free but socially conditioned by the Ego and lawfully controlled by the Super Ego. The self has to balance the consciousness the in-itself with the for-itself. An imbalance would give rise to psychosis or neurosis.
The assumption of this writing starts from the view that all signs are Signifiers. A signifier is a tangible reality with a sense of meaning. I have divided the post-structural assemblage of the sign into various categories.
Semantoria refers to the phonic and graphic content of the letter. Here the letter of the language metamorphizes into a primary content of meaning which can be a spoken one or a written one. The presence or absence of meaning as implied by deconstruction can be considered as implying sensibilities. The essence of connotation can only be an implication of construction.
In semantics verbs are performative, that is they perform an action. A verb such as swim is a signifier and it performs the action of swimming. For words to be the symptom of Verboria, they can form an idea that is sensible and not an abstract one like love, passion or kindness. For example: in a sentence: she dances, the meaning becomes complete and that state of completion is called verboria. Writing of Verboria taken in the grammatological sense of Derrida’s Deconstruction fails to become a deconstructive entity.
Logoria is a state of forming a sign from a signifier and a signified. It was Saussure who introduced it into language. A signifier is a tangible entity and belongs to the sensate realm. For e.g. let’s take odor. Odor belongs to the sensate realm and it can be felt. Here Odor is a Signifier. If I say: the odor is nauseating, nauseating becomes a signified or a connoted idea. Nauseating becomes the Signified. Post-structuralists use deconstruction to deconstruct signs. When there is a presence in a sign, there is also an absence. Post-Structuralists argue that a sign privileges presence and marginalizes an absence. For example if I say that colored people cannot be intellectuals, I am privileging the presence of White and marginalizing the presence of the colored. For Derrida the stability of signs in a language is an articulated hegemony. Language by its very structure when prone to articulation becomes victim of structural inconsistencies. It is the duty of deconstruction to articulate critical readings to autonomic democracy.
A Metoria is an effect of reading tropes or figures of speech. Let’s take a metaphor as an example. For example Palestine is a Volcano. The meaning implied here is Palestine’s political climate is very volatile. Palestine is the tenor the denoted part of the sentence and Volcano is the vehicle which carries the tenor. A metaphor can have a realism of meaning which is mere semantic content. At a secondary level, the meaning of a metaphor implies an aesthetic effect. The reader gets to appreciate the content of meaning created by the metaphor. For a reading of metaphor there is also a tertiary level of meaning and meaning becomes an ideology, a meta-narrative or a grand-narrative. For example: Palestine is a volcano suggests that it is nation longing for being recognized to an absolute status as a nation-entity. The opponents of this view might claim that Palestine is inducing terrorist activities and rampant unlawful behavior. The tertiary level of reading a metaphor can be deconstructive that is undoing the privileged status of meaning.
Mathematical and Scientific symbols fall into this category. For example the word DNA Deoxyribonucleic acid falls into the symbolic category of meaning. The structural presence of meaning is always one of being abstract and being in transformation.
Tropes are figures of speech. The most common are the metaphors and similes. A metaphor is comparison between two objects one being the Tenor of comparison and the other being the Vehicle. For example: My body is a wounded and politically bonded Palestine. The body is the tenor and the description of the body: Palestine is the vehicle. A simile uses like or as, for example strong as a lion. What would be the effect of a reader who reads into the metaphor? I would like to use my own term: “CONOSCEANCE” CONOSCEANCE has been derived from Connoisseur and Séance. It has three levels of meaning. These levels of meaning occur, when the trope is being unraveled. One is sensate meaning, the second is intelligent meaning and the third is the aesthetic effect, the feeling of beauty or repulsion. The sensate meaning is related to the senses. The intelligent realm of meaning is related to the forming of an idea and the aesthetic realm is that of pleasure or revulsion.