New Blog: The Non-Buddhist
Posted by Glenn Wallis on October 9, 2013
I can recommend this blog for several reasons. For one, it encourages, in word and deed, the doing of the non-buddhist critique, the use of the tools that the theory provides. In the most recent post, “How to eXplode x-buddhism,” for instance, Matthias Steingass analyzes the discrepancy between the obvious interest that figures within the x-buddhist system have in speculative non-buddhism and their even more obvious ignorance of its actual theory and uses.
Another reason I recommend this blog is that it exemplifies the practice of the force (of) thought. That is Laruelle’s adaptation of Marx’s labor power. Laruelle uses this term in several senses, all of which are on display at The Non-Buddhist. The force (of) thought is: (1) The force that belongs to thought itself. Thought does things. Thought is in and of itself a force, a power, potency, a potentiality, a potence-actuality. A characteristic common to every x-buddhist figure on the scene today without exception, including–especially?–secular Buddhists, post-traditional Buddhists, Buddhist “punx,” and all those other well-behaved half-hearted efforts to reshape x-buddhism is the cynical refusal or constitutional inability to think through x-buddhism’s very suppositions. This thinking through is the unleashing, the unfettering, of the force (of) thought. The Non-Buddhist is a site where this occurs. (2) Force as thought. The passive-aggressive violence of x-buddhist dialogical techniques, such as employment of the Principle of Sufficient Buddhism, Right-Speechism, and the Example Fetish, cannot be countered with thought. Decisional commitment ensures that the x-buddhist remains safely ensconced within the dharmic fortress. But here, force itself, can batter the walls and slash the x-buddhist’s armor of faith. Where reflexive adherence to an ideology is at work–where thought has failed–forcefulness itself can be a form of, or do the work of, thought. (3) As that idea indicates, force and thought can be understand as co-extensive: forcethought, thoughtforce. (4) Force of thought. Like Marx’s “labor power,” thought can become a collective, collaborative force. It can be a force in and of itself, unalienated from any controlling system of thought. Collaborative thought can produce a force (of people, of ideas) that generates further groupings (of people, of ideas). The force can, of course, become alienated. In our economic system, for instance, the labor force is tied and bound to a currency that cruelly implicates it as a co-creator of the very system that ensures that it–the labor force–will have its potential crushed, its opportunities denied, and its aspirations mocked. Similarly, x-buddhists always, without exception, bind thought and the thinker to the dharmic juggernaut, rumbling ever toward some sort of obscurely defined Jerusalem.
Please see for yourself. From the About page:
The evolution of this blog goes back to a post at Der Unbuddhist which in itself was an evolution of a discussion/struggle finding its end in a certain thread at the blog Speculative Non-Buddhism (SNB).
The general idea here is to give space for further discussion about the idea and implications of non-buddhism. It is important for any newcomer and generally for anybody interested in the discussions which might unfold here to be conversant with the inaugural text/idea which ignited this all: Glenn Wallis’ Nascent Speculative Non-Buddhism (1).
For definitions of the vocabulary used here, especially the terms “non-buddhism” and “x-buddhism” please refer to the explanations given in the mentioned text and at the SNB site (cf. for example What is non-buddhism? and Why x-buddhism).
At the heart of this project is an attempt to transpose Francois Laruelle’s concept of “decision” to a critique of x-buddhism. What follows is but one attempt to say what that means. The authoritative text remains Nascent Speculative Non Buddhism.