Δευτέρα, 26 Δεκεμβρίου 2011

Badiou: On Christian Eschatology (Via Q Meillassoux)

Πηγή: Metastable Equilibrium

In conclusion, one can wonder about the disconcerting bond between the Badiousian conception of a truth and the Christian conception of the Incarnation. In EE, meditation 21 devoted to Pascal opens on thought 776 (éd. Lafuma): "The history of the Church must properly be called the history of truth". And in fact, one can say that Badiou accords to Pascal to have seized, and with him Pauline Christianity, to which was expressly devoted a book, that which one could call the "genuine proceedings of the truth". Because if Christianity is founded on a fable, according to Badiou, its force comes from having seized if not its contents then at least the real form of any truth: it proceeds by way of a event not demonstrable by a constituted knowledge - the divinity of Christ - of which one would know more than the trace - the testimony of apostles, of evangelists, etc., but its being is already abolished, crucified, and even its body has already disappeared, while the belief starts to emerge that it will have taken place. And the Christian truth is the ensemble of enquiries of fidelities, i.e. their intervention in the Palestinian situation, then Middle-Eastern and Roman, in the light of their having held the place of Christianity. Lastly, universal history, for the Christians, is nothing other than the ensemble of enquiries of the Church-subject over the course of centuries, made of schisms and heresies, therefore of research into the formula and action of a fidelity to the absolute event of man's divine creation. Out the Church, not of history, and not of hello, only the monotonous chaos of passions and perditions.

Badiou is thus here in extreme fidelity... - with the structure, if not the contents - of Christian eschatology. It is by no means the denial of this dream, as it is he who makes of Paul the "founder of universalism": that which seized the first militant nature, and not the erudition, of truth. In this sense it without doubt represents one of the possible evolutions of Marxism, shared since the beginning between critical thought and revolutionary eschatology. A great part of the ex-Marxists renounced eschatology, considering that it was effectively religious residue, a principal source among the promethean disasters of real socialism. The singularity of Badiou seems on the contrary to consist of this: that he isolates from Marxism its eschatologic share, separates it from its pretension, that he considers economic scientificity illusory, and delivers it, burning, on the disseminated subjects of all kinds of struggles, political as well as amorous. With the place of the religious illusion of eschatology dissolved by criticism in the writings of Badiou, eschatology becomes irreligious so that the event can deploy its critical power on the colorless present of our ordinary renouncements.

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