Sujet trébuchant #2 – Fragilize the absolute

Bits and Pieces from Adorno’s Minima Moralia. Reflections from Damaged Life (1951): “In psychoanalysis nothing is true, but its exaggerations” / “The whole is the untrue” / “In his ‘Antichrist’ Nietzsche has made his strongest argument not just against theology, but against metaphysics: that hope is mistaken for truth; that the impossibility to think, live happily or live at all without an absolute, doesn’t account for the legitimacy of the idea [of the absolute, I guess].” – (all my translations) Then, there comes what Adorno argues with or against Nietzsche, but I’m not ABSOLUTELY sure I understand it, so I’m cutting right across what seems to be his conclusion with/against Nietzsche: “In the end hope, as it wrestles itself from reality by negating it, is the only form in which truth appears.” So, here you go…


1 response to Sujet trébuchant #2 – Fragilize the absolute

  1. Santiago Jiminez

    Yes yes yes! Fragilize the absolute! There are many good reasons to do so. Our poor brains are brutalized and traumatized; we need to be gentle and delicate (within ourselves at first) in order to stop being stupid. When one is rough, one also is insensitive. And whenever I impose my will I am creating my own blind spot. So often when people insist on a truth claim (like “Truth is dictated by power”) they are only articulating their own desire (to be a powerful, godlike being) as silhouetted by the penumbra of their blind spot.

    If it were not laughed at, it would not be the Truth. – Lao Tzu
    Truth is the antithesis of existing society. – Adorno

    Truth-claims promoted by “legitimate institutions” are (intrinsically/functionally) lies; but that doesn’t mean that everything is a lie. Language cannot explain that which neither the speaker nor the hearer understands; but it can sometimes expose foolishness. The only truth which we can hope to achieve and articulate here and now is negative Truth– i.e. criticism.

    We can struggle toward a positive Truth. The struggle, if sincere, will improve our thinking and our language. We will never express Absolute Truth in language; however, working toward that goal is the only way we will improve ourselves.

    If you give up on working toward truth, you effectively offer unconditional surrender to violent coercion.

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