This is not the manifesto of a movement, but rather the expression, among other things, of someone determined to expose a façade, signing the expiration warrant of a doctrine composed in the language of dreams, preferring a speech disheveled by the wind and pitted with holes, but with the kind of authority that a ruin cannot help but have and that no mere movement can ever possess.*
The Perfection of Immanental Wisdom Sutra
Except through illusion, delusion, emotional distress or psychological need, x-buddhism, (Mindfulness, Zen, Vipassana, Secular Buddhism, ad nauseum) cannot substitute itself for the human. Without the force of illusion, delusion, emotional distress or psychological need, nothing is capable of displacing generic human identity. The human cannot, except through illusion, delusion, emotional distress or psychological need, substitute his/her identity for the x-buddhist subject. The person of flesh and blood is an inalienable reality. Reversibility between the person of flesh and blood and the x-buddhist subject is impossible.
The Irrevocable Axiom Sutra
The previous sutra is an irrevocable axiom on the basis of which this sutra and all those that follow are founded.
The Fear or Contempt Sutra
X-buddhism (its doctrines, its teachers), in the twenty-first century West, is a species of contempt disguised as a species of compassion. Contemptuous of what?—of flesh and blood potentialities. Either that or it is fearful—fearing the exuberant creativity and coruscating intelligence of the uninstructed hoi polloi. Whether out of fear or contempt, x-buddhism arms itself—in the name of flesh and blood potentialities—with a self-serving hermeneutics of exemplification, called “The Dharma.” This supra-signifier constitutes a battery of abstract, obscure principles disguised as concrete, human ones.
The Bourgeoisie Sutra
X-buddhism (its doctrines, its teachers) functions like the nineteenth century bourgeoisie. Namely: it divides a generic, classless humanity into hierarchized subjects of its own invention; it fabricates false divisions in order to fulfill its desire for spiritualized power and domination; it reigns over the human via a confusion of transcendent declarations cloaked as natural laws (dharma as market); it founds its principles and practices in transcendental illusions of its own making; and therein it establishes its sufficiency in the last instance. X-buddhism (its doctrines, its teachers) prospers by alienating humans of flesh and blood from their unique productive forces. It then usurps those forces, distorts them, and employs them toward its own productive ends.
The Statute of Decision Sutra
To romanticized Indian asceticism, glamorized East Asian metaphysics, and Christo-Judaic law (the still forceful code of western x-buddhists) is added decision—the statute that calls for the rending of the flesh and blood person in order to deliver him, as mere remainder, over to the differential transcendent magistrate, The Dharma.
The Lustful Imperium Sutra
The statute is the engine of x-buddhist desire. The statute’s force is directed at the human’s sense of deficiency, born of illusion, delusion, emotional distress or psychological need. The statute, by fiat, decrees the annexation of flesh and blood by the Imperium’s lustful pontiff, The Dharma.
The Sutra of Hallucinated Destruction
Since transference of identity is impossible, destruction of identity is impossible. The x-buddhist subject-practitioner is thus disabused of its exalted claim to destruction—of the taints, of desire, of delusion, lust, and anger, of ignorance and of the ignorant, of sorrow and lamentation, for instance. The x-buddhist subject-practitioner dreams its purity in bloodless reverie. The subject-practitioner is a fleshless phantasmagoria, fashioned from rootless language, thought, and desire. Regarding the person of flesh and blood, the x-buddhist subject-practitioner is the destroyer of nothing.
The Identity of the Assassin Sutra
X-buddhism is the master assassin. It targets the person of flesh and blood. But, x-buddhism is a specular pasha, reigning from on high. So, in order to fulfill the second tenet of the assassin’s creed—“hide in plain sight; be one with the crowd”—it employs its teacher-acolytes to carry out the deed.
The Suicide of X-buddhism Sutra
In the assassin’s hit, there is no death of the human, no murder of flesh, no spilling of blood. There is only the suicide of x-buddhism. The assassin strikes with a body bomb and thus leaves only scraps of dharmic bone in the aftermath.
The Impotence Sutra
To the extent that the person of flesh and blood lives subjugated by the lustful imperious statute of x-buddhistic decision, he lives diminished by an impotence of thought, speech, and action and, thus, as flesh and blood person, with an indefensible culpability.
The Termination of the Statute Sutra
The termination of the statute of x-buddhistic decision constitutes an instantaneous return to the life lived through the inalienable body of flesh and blood. Termination of the statute spells the abrupt disempowerment of x-buddhism’s violent gesture of abstraction known as The Dharma.
The Reclamation of Radical Identity Sutra
Liberated from the perpetual force of the anti-human dharmic differential, termination of the statute of decision spontaneously exposes the raw, radical identity of the person of flesh and blood.
- Georges Bataille, “Molloy’s Silence,” in S. E. Gontarski (ed.), On Beckett: Essays and Criticism (New York: Grove Press, 1986), p. 131 (slightly reworded).
“Sutras of Flesh and Blood” takes its inspiration—in form and in the occasional word—from François Laruelle’s “Théorèmes de la Bonne Nouvelle,” in La Décision philosophique, 1 (May 1987): 83-85. I thank Alexander R. Galloway for making available to me a copy of this difficult to obtain text. I also consulted Galloway’s excellent translation of Laruelle’s text, as “Theorems on the Good News,” available at his website.