FREEDOM WITHOUT SELVES. EXPEDITING THE NEMOCENTRIC SOCIETY.

disquietism

This post expands on the philosophy of Thomas Metzinger, locating it in relation to Ray Brassier, via a call for the manufacturing and expedition of ever more elaborate forms of alienation (‘superior forms of corruption’, as it has elsewhere been called). This is envisioned as proceeding towards the abolition of the ‘self’ as the presumed center of rational commitments: as Brassier notes, we can (and should) have autonomy (‘freedom’) without selves.

Selfhood is an outmoded GUI. It has long supplied us with an extremely powerful arsenal of explanatory tools regarding behavior and introspection, yet it will at some point have had its day. Path dependency and ‘lock-in’ mean that the cost of ‘switching it out’ has as yet been high; yet technological advancements arriving in the coming decades and centuries will inevitably force us to revise our cost/benefit weighting here.

What is ‘selfhood’? Simply, selfhood arises from an organism’s transparent identification with its…

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ANARCHIST FUTURISM & THE LIE OF HISTORY [From the Archives of TheState]

Journal of a Cosmic Anthropologist

The following essay was originally serialised on The State from May 20, 2013.


genesis and forking timelines

doktor sleepless doktor sleepless

It’s the early 90s. In the form of an Australian teenager finishing high school, with a head full of Heinlein, I tried to join the Army. That future never eventuated—in this timeline, anyway. I entered university still full of techno-optimism, studying computer science & software engineering. Top of my class in AI, I was offered a summer research position, the first step to a career in the lab, building better machine minds. That future exists only in a parallel universe.

Instead, a year later I was in the middle of an inter-corporate war on the other side of the planet. I was sat in a trailer, trying to help usher in the home internet age for a very minimum wage. This is the story of that reality: my journey through the…

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Say Goodbye to the Holocene Epoch

Collapse of Industrial Civilization


lifestyle_banksy-500x332

Mankind’s exothermic machine of industrial civilization recently blew past the 400ppm CO2 mile post, causing a few passengers to exclaim, “Homo sapiens have never existed at these levels of heat-trapping gases!” Hundreds and even thousands of years will pass before the full aftermath from our fossil fuel orgy plays out, but we’ll see plenty of nasty surprises in feedback loops and tipping points this century, perhaps most notably sea level rise. Another area of glaciers once thought to be stable has fallen to the human CO2 spike which is occurring 14,000 faster than natural processes and 10-200 times faster than the PETM extinction event. Every so often I feel the need to try to wrap my mind around these horrific statistics and re-examine our place in time as we continue whistling past the graveyard. Keeping in mind that we have yet to take our foot off the gas pedal of economic growth, I’ll try to make sense of what we…

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The Glint of the Sword: Sikhism’s Spiritual Justice

GODS & RADICALS

Ours in an age where the triumph of the material over the spiritual now faces a crisis. The inheritance and legacy of Western Enlightenment – specifically the forces of science, technology and capitalist economics – has rendered human life hollow. We find ourselves reduced to parts plugged into a merciless machine that generates wealth for the few, while destroying the Earth that has sustained our life for eons.

The pain of post-modern life spills into our streets, into our computer screens and into our souls. In this matrix of disillusion, many turn to “traditional” narratives for hope. Contemporary consumer capitalism doesn’t have much of a story to tell. Sure, we have made important and indispensable social and cultural progress on some fronts. Yet for the alleged progressive political parties, progress means that anyone, regardless of race, gender or religion can become CEO, or give orders to bomb foreign peoples.

We…

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The Brain of History or the Mentality of the Anthropocene | Catherine Malabou

synthetic zerø

The Brain of History or the Mentality of the Anthropocene

Catherine Malabou’s lecture is titled “The Brain of History or the Mentality of the Anthropocene” and will explore topics of the human condition and humanity’s disruption of both earth’s geology and biology. The lecture will further explore Malabou’s approach to renewing an interchange between traditional philosophy and the hard sciences.

Catherine Malabou is professor of philosophy at Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy (CRMEP), Kingston University. She has written extensively on contemporary French and German philosophy but it is with her encounter with neuroscience that have distinguished her research.

The lectures was held on Saturday 21 January 2017 at Moderna Museet in Stockholm and it was produced on the occasion of the exhibition The New Human in cooperation with Stockholm School of Economics Art Initiative. The lecture was part of “What is Human?”, two lectures on the science and…

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