At the risk of coming across as a nerd, someone with an OCD or a form of autism (all borne with pride!), I give here five schemes that have helped me articulate some of the ideas in my work. Except for Scheme 4 (Fourfold Revisited), none of these schemes were intended for publication. They were instead conceived as aide-memoires, idiosyncratic attempts to articulate ideas visually. A very subtle evolution can be discerned through them, my articulation of time changing progressively over the years.
For those who are interested, this evolution can perhaps be summarised in this telegraphic way: I started conceiving time as an advent (not an event), the always untimely encounter of Being with the radically Other (Scheme 1: Derrida). I extended this perspective by exploring the fact that this advent cannot be understood outside of sexual difference and progeny (Scheme 2: Levinas + 3: Chalier). I then widened this understanding of time by revealing this advent, following Heidegger, as a poly-logical Fourfold (Scheme 4: Heidegger). The main shift with this wider perspective was to finally extricate time from the entire arsenal of archic and telic representations and to reconcile transcendental and immanental outlooks. With such a new apperception of time, I then proceeded to expose what gives rise to this poly-logical Fourfold in the first place, namely, the one utterly rational and eternal substance structuring the universe itself; this materiality, necessity, or perfection that knows no reason whatsoever (Scheme 5: Spinoza). Overall, this evolution exposes a one and only concern throughout: how to deal with this incommensurable that always structures time, i.e. what is intermittently called Being, the Other, the Most High, Death, God, or Eternity? This concern will no doubt continue evolving and changing. For now, please note that these schemes don’t, of course, aspire to any form of accuracy or legitimacy.
Clicking on the thumbnails reveals the scheme in a new window.
1. Derrida – S’at-tendre-l’Un-l’Autre
2. Levinas – Dia-Chrony
3. Chalier – Catenoid
4. Heidegger – Fourfold Revisited
5. Spinoza – Scientia Intuitiva