Monday, August 4, 2008

Hypermodernity and the Rule of Technology - Part II

Connecting techne to aletheia (“truth”) in a "Greek" wayEven more significant, is the link between techne and episteme. From the earliest times until Plato the word techne is linked to the word episteme. Both words are terms for “knowing” – in the widest sense of the word possible, i.e.: to be entirely at home in something, to understand and be an expert in it. This knowing provides an opening-up. As an opening-up, it is a revealing.In this way, Aristotle, in the Nicomachean Ethics, links techne to truth. Techne is a mode of aletheuein, of truth “as a revealing.” Techne reveals whatever does not bring itself forth and does not yet lie before us. Whoever builds a ship or a house, or forges a sacrificial chalice, reveals what is to be brought forth. This revealing gathers together in advance the aspect and matter of a ship or house, with a view to the finished, completed thing. This gathering determines the manner of its construction. Thus what is decisive in techne does not at all lie in making and manipulating, but rather in the revealing. It is as revealing, not as manufacturing, that techne means a “bringing-forth.” The Greeks defined techne as an activity that occurs in the same realm as truth (“as a revealing”).Technology is a mode of revealing.


In "revealing" or "making manifest" we imply a simple dualism that does us dis-service...surely we are not the munching brood that assumes that "reality" is hidden behind some flimsy curtain dividing experience from essence. Surely these men are our boon-enemies. So called "techne" does no more for us than it did for our poor greasy, dolma-eating fore-bearers, and their chitnzy pagan gods. In more hypermodernist terms one might turn to the Cyclops chapter in Joyce's Ulysses for a consideration of techne as a "hinge" or a continuous turning in perspective of our hero, the Wandering Jew, Judah ben Bloom, contrasted with the trivial bistcuit tin cast at him he rises"at a 45 degree angle, like a shot off a shovel..." So called enlightenment is not a "revealing" but a "disillusionment" invoked by increasing methods of perception..


Most likely of truth, Heraclitus sez (Diels fragment 18): ἐὰν μὴ ἔλπηται ἀνέλπιστον οὐκ ἐξευρήσει, ἀνεξερεύνητον ἐὸν καὶ ἄπορον"If you do not expect the unexpected, you will not find it; for it is hard to be sought out and difficult to obtain."

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