Thursday, January 25, 2007

Thought's Torsion

In the letter of March 1663 to Simon de Vries, Spinoza takes pains to declare that the word 'attribute' does not by itself constitute a naming of the 'there is' in any way essentially distinct from the naming of the latter by substance. Having reiterated the definition of substance he adds: 'I understand the same by attribute, except that it is called attribute in relation to (*respectu*) the intellect, which attributes such and such a definite nature to substance. Thus the attribute, as well as the multipliciity of attributes through which divine infinity is identified, is a function of the intellect. In the general arrangement of the 'there is', there exists --under the name 'God'--a singular localization, that of the intellect, upon whose point of view or operations depends thought's capacity for rational access to divine infinity, and hence to the 'there is' as such.

It is thus necessary to recogize that the intellect occupies the position of a fold--to take up the central concept in Deleuze's philosophy. Or, using my own terminology, that the intellect is an operation of torsion. It is localizable of an immanent production of God, but is also required to uphold the naming of the 'there is' as God. For only the singular operations of the intellect give meaning to God's existential singularization as *infinite* substance.*...
~ from Alan Badiou's "Spinoza's Closed Ontology"

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