The Impossibility of an Original Self

There is always already the world with me in it (Heidegger). There is no me without the Other (Levinas). I am a product of my time. Everything I think and do is framed, already framed, in language. If there is a protolanguage, an original structure, this will always remain a mystery for me, as it is always me thinking it.

Nobyeni

Any existentialist conceptions of the Self, a being free of the Other, a being able to choose freely, is merely a product of our time. Existentialism is its own mauvaise foi. Even as a philosopher, how am I to know I am not merely satisfying my human longing, desire, for change, for freedom, existence?

As such all my thinking is fully grounded in today’s world: the illusion of being original. The search for a breaking of this structure, this world, is in vain. The idea of an Event (Badiou), a search for the impossible possible (Derrida), etc etc, is itself a product of our paradigm and as such it is impossible to use it as a starting point for the finding of a possibility for a rupture. And if we do find a break, a rupture, will it mean we have created it ourselves in order to satisfy our own needs? Breaking the world to reach for an original self is only one more perversion that merely re-establishes the present paradigm (Zizek).

But what does this mean? Does it tell us something about the limits of our present paradigm or does it say something about the most fundamental structure of truth and reality?

Or is it the impossibility of originality that makes it valuable above all? And are we to destroy the dichotomy of possible-impossible in order to become?

Author: Nobyeni

Freelance Philosopher (PhD). Writer. Thinker. Interested in radical change and human being. Playwright. Dutch World citizen. Lover of books, language, art and coffee.

2 thoughts on “The Impossibility of an Original Self”

  1. I have been working on a series dealing with deconstruction and apophatic theology. Since you seem to be the only other blogger writing about Derrida, I was curious about your opinion. I wanted to ask someone, with knowledge, if I presented Derrida’s ideas with fairness. I do not expect you to agree with the conclusions but would love to hear a critique. Here is a link to the core of the essay which is three parts:

    http://durandinquisitive.wordpress.com/2014/01/15/the-mystical-theology-of-postmodernism/

    Thank you.

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