I exist in relation to love.
I love therefore I am certain. I fail at love and I am exiled from love. I return to love, uncertain of what return means. I am deadened by love, I am awoken by love.
There is nothing more achingly nuclear, more subversively revolutionary, more perplexingly miraculous than the three word performative utterance, incantation, shahada: I love you.
I love the truthful, bare naked exposure of love most of all. Because I love, truthfully, I love.
1. The lineage of love in modern philosophy
Love is a suppressed sign in modern philosophy. Somewhere, buried within the library of the Greek origin, there is the Symposium and the Platonic dialogues. Then love rests, reemerging from time to time, notably within the Christian Aristotelian-Platonist mongrel: Augustianian contemplations upon the meaning of marriage, the theology of God’s love in Neoplatonism. Then it is censored within the Cartesian cogito, it is neither synthetic nor analytic within Kant, and Humean/Barclayan induction has nothing to say of the significance of repetition/exception when it comes to a human relationships.
And yet they do. What is spoken is driven by what is unspoken. And so they speak volumes. Discount the postures of the German and English romantics, the Goetes and Colleridges: strong poets but weak philosophers, if strength is given a Bloomean measure, one of Oedipal succession, of reformation in a legitimacy that is at one both lineal and a rupure/resurfacing of the symptom.
And so here I am, love sick, a philosopher of my time, ready to pronounce, kneeling at the confessional of this, my Catholic sign regime. To speak as a philosopher of my time, authentically, I must deploy my meagre inheritance, the psychoanalytic vocabulary of the Europeans, from Freud to Lacan to Foucault to Deleuze, who afford (respectively) at least a living and breathing habitus of the complexities, the embodied textuality, the abject failure of love under desire, the perverse and cynical capitalism of the fluid romantic term, the fundamentally superficial psychophisiology of love. Because it was in the Feudian turn that the Sign of Love seriously re-surfaced, strongly and explicitly engorged, protuding hence from the text of philosophical dialogue, voluptuously convexed herself, wantonly concaved to discourse.
Suppressed all the same. But visible, felt. Still mentioned. Psychoanalytic love is a side effect of physical textual nexus. Therefore a term that hovers above the surface of the body, like a mirage, like a false god. But a god all the same, good enough for me to work with, preemptive of the the religiosity I am prophetically bound to embue upon it.
It’s a sufficiently aroused state of affairs — one might even say deliriously climactic state of ontological tension — for me to kneel, spread her legs and taste. After all, philosophy is gagging for it.