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Fr. 867

February 21, 2019

As previously noted, I believe that there is a gap or lack – in any case, a source of unending questions – at the center of our lives or existence. People may respond to this gap or lack in different ways, but they most often aim at the same end: closing it or stopping the questions as one would stop a hole. Religion, political ideology, social tribes, etc. serve much the same purpose. Rare are those who, like Deleuze, think that the proper response is to close the gap or lack with a view itself approximating a gap or lack to maintain that which is or resembles the broadest opening. This amounts to embracing that source, those questions, never too sure of ourselves, always open to new views. Yet I must wonder not just how much but what value there is in this stance. What truth or beauty does it create by abstaining from participation in the highly specialized division of epistemic labor, as undertaken in groups which aim to close the gap? Is it even a stance that can be coherently occupied? If a good interlocutor in philosophical discourse does not aim merely to be right (and so issuing as many hypotheses as possible) but also to represent consistently and to explore thoroughly possible positions, does this mean that the discursive or epistemic ideal is not remaining open to new ideas and positions but remaining open to reopening that gap so that one might close it in a different fashion entirely?

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