• Acausality and the Machian Mind

      John W. Jameson; Jameson Robotics (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2014-06-08)
      In this paper we propose a mechanism in the brain for supporting consciousness. We leave open the question of the origin of consciousness itself, although an acausal origin is suggested since it should mesh with the proposed quasi-acausal network dynamics.  In particular, we propose simply that fixed-point attractors, such as exemplified by the simple deterministic Hopfield network, correspond to conscious moments.  In a sort of dual to Tononi's Integrated Information Theory, we suggest that the "main experience" corresponds to a dominant fixed point that incorporates sub-networks that span the brain and maximizes "relatedness." The dynamics around the dominant fixed point correspond in some parts of the system to associative memory dynamics, and to more binding constraint satisfaction dynamics in other areas. Since the memories that we are familiar with appear to have a conscious origin, it makes sense that a conscious moment itself corresponds in effect to what amounts to memory recollection.  Furthermore, since Hopfield-like networks are generative, a conscious moment can in effect be seen as a living, partially predicted memory. Another primary motivation for this approach is that alternative states can be naturally sensed, or contrasted, at the fixed points.
    • Addressing the Conflict Between Relativity and Quantum Theory: Models, Measurement and the Markov Property

      N/A; Gareth Ernest Boardman; Swinburne University of Technology (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2013-12-29)
      Twenty-first century science faces a dilemma. Two of its well-verified foundation stones - relativity and quantumtheory - have proven inconsistent. Resolution of the conflict has resisted improvements in experimental precision leaving some to believe that some fundamental understanding in our world-view may need modification or even radical reform. Employment of the wave-front model of electrodynamics, as a propagation process with a Markov property, may offer just such a clarification.
    • Aesthetic Communities, Peripheral Identities and Social Movements

      Marcos Giadas; University Paris Ouest Nanterre (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2010-12-20)
      After centuries of symbolic and political oppression, Galicia has been recognized by the Spanish constitution as a historic nationality. However, despite a certain degree of political autonomy, Galician identity is threatened by increasing homogenization in the economic, social, cultural and linguistic fields. In the early 1990s the aesthetic movement Bravú constructed an aesthetic community, sustained by an ideological project, and with the aim to, on the one hand, prevent Galician culture from becoming folklore stuck in a time warp and, on the other hand, to validate Galician identity. The Bravú artists refused the historically inherited outsider position and contributed to a reinvention of Galician identity and of a political ideal within a cosmopolitan, internationalist framework and by reversing social stigmas through their works and performances.
    • Affirmative Naturalism: Deleuze and Epicurianism

      Keith Ansell-Pearson; University of Warwick (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2014-12-15)
      In his lifetime Deleuze described himself as many things: an empiricist, a pluralist, a pure metaphysician, and, the one that especially interests me, a naturalist.  We shall soon see what this commitment to naturalism entails. 
    • Affirming Life

      Arran Gare; Swinburne University (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2017-11-11)
      Editorial to the edition on Advancing Life
    • After the Surprising Conversions (Jacqueline Rose, The Question of Zion)

      Justin Clemens; Deakin University (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2005-12-19)
      A discussion of Jacqueline Rose, The Question of Zion, Melbourne, Melbourne University Press, 2005.
    • Against the Virtual: Kleinherenbrink’s Externality Thesis and Deleuze’s Machine Ontology

      Ekin Erkan (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2020-05-06)
      Following Arjen Kleinherenbrink’s Against Continuity: Gilles Deleuze’s Speculative Realism (2019)—arguably one of the closest and most rigorous secondary readings of Deleuze’s oeuvre—this paper seeks to demonstrate how any relation between machines immediately engenders a new machine, accounting for machinic circuits of activity where becoming, or processes of generation, are always necessarily irreducible to the generators. Thus, navigating Kleinherenbrink’s work and Deleuze’s literature, this paper treats reality as a byproduct of discontinuity, where direct contact between the interior (virtual) and real (actual) being of machines is necessarily foreclosed. Rather than privileging Deleuze as a theorist of the virtual, this paper situates Deleuze’s virtual as non-relational excess over and above all other relations while treating continuity as dependent upon the Idea, powers (puissance), or singularities of any machine in question. By relating and distinguishing aspects of Deleuze’s externality thesis, where no machine is reducible to another, this position opposes a recently popularized interpretation of Deleuze by theorists who proffer the “aisthetic perspective” of relation or produce approaches to “affect” that hierarchize the virtual, thereby prioritizing continuity.  I argue that this interpretation fundamentally misreads Deleuze and mischaracterizes continuity as a product of direct contact between intensities and the processes comprising such intensities; it is, in fact, due to the “sense-event,” which corresponds to actuality, that the virtual aspect of any two machines is precluded from coming into direct contact. In addition to reviewing Kleinherenbrink’s book (which argues that the machine ontology is a guiding current that emerges in Deleuze’s work after Difference and Repetition) alongside Deleuze’s primary texts, we will also relate Deleuze’s machine ontology to positions held by a host of speculative realists and object-oriented ontologists such as Quentin Meillassoux, Levi Bryant, Maurizio Ferraris, Markus Gabriel, Manuel Delanda, Graham Harman, Tristan Garcia, and Bruno Latour. Arguing that the machine ontology has its own account of interaction, change, and novelty, I ultimately set to prove that Deleuze is by no means a reductionist, positing that the any “cut” on behalf of virtual realm is never warranted because, unlike the realm of actualities, it is necessarily inconsistent—that is, because it cannot be homogenous, any theory of change vis-à-vis the virtual realm makes it impossible to explain how and why qualitatively different actualities are produced. Preferring a machine ontology to an ontology derived from the virtual realm, this paper also engages with a new and emerging interpretation of Deleuze termed “differential heterogenesis,” where externality is treated as it exists between processes.
    • Agamben, Hegel, and the State of Exception

      Wendell Kisner; Athabasca University (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2007-12-28)
      span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial"In his account of the state of exception, Agamben repeatedly relies upon what Hegel would have called emWesenslogik/em or #39;transcendental thinking#39;. Because of this reliance, the state of exception appears in Agamben#39;s account as the hidden ground of modern liberal democracies. When conceived as such a ground, it appears to be a condition of possibility that inexorably persists in the modern state. Moreover, within the state of exception all juridical order is suspended, leaving no normative or juridical criteria on the basis of which to decide what the structure of any emergent political order should look like. This means that from the state of exception we can just as easily land in a totalitarian as we can in a liberal democratic or democratic socialist state. Without such criteria - lacking due to the total suspension characterizing the state of exception - Agamben#39;s own alignment with Benjaminian revolutionary messianism over Schmittian authoritarianism is arbitrary, and he leaves us with no basis for making any such decision ourselves. Drawing upon Hegel#39;s dialectic of freedom and his critique of transcendental thought, this paper argues that within the state of exception there is an implicit logic that points the way out of it. Furthermore, it does so in such a way that the state of exception is neither annexed by the structure of a predetermined juridical order along the lines proposed by Schmitt on the one hand nor posited it as a transcendental structure underlying or always preceding modern liberal democracies on the other. This alternative is overlooked by Agamben precisely because of his own insistence upon conceiving of the state of exception in a transcendent way./span
    • Agamben’s Curio Cabinet, Animality, and the Zone of Indeterminacy

      Wendell Kisner; Athabasca University (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2017-01-27)
      As I have argued elsewhere, Agamben’s thought remains mired in a transcendental way of thinking that falls under the Hegelian critique. In this essay, through a hermeneutical method that can be aptly characterized by the “curio cabinet” Agamben had earlier thematized in The Man Without Content, I intend to indicate where this occurs specifically with respect to his understanding of animality in The Open: Man and Animal, an understanding bound up with his well-known concept of “bare life.” Doing so will bring Agamben into contact with Hegel precisely at that point where they both meet from within the innermost thought of each: the zone of indeterminacy. But whereas, according to Hegel’s argument, indeterminacy in the political sphere is an appropriate point of departure for deriving the structures of freedom, such indeterminacy cannot function in a similar manner for understanding the meaning of animality. By following a transcendental logic that always returns us to a humanity/animality indeterminacy, Agamben effectively hinders any further understanding of animality as well as of the mechanistic character of the “anthropological machine” he presupposes in the same gesture, a machine whose operation he wishes to halt but cannot. I will then suggest where a possible alternative better suited to satisfying Agamben’s own goals might lie.  
    • Alain Badiou's Being and Event

      Jon Roffe (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2006-10-27)
      Much like the parade of claimants for the hand of Penelope in Homerrsquo;s Odyssey, the theoretical humanities have been presented with a string of would-be maicirc;tres agrave; pensers, each bringing with them claims of radical originality, and the promise of hope for the disciplines in question. Not only is the philosophy of Alain Badiou among the very few who have serious justifications to the claim of originality, the rigour, scope and goals of his philosophy reveal him as the first thinker in a long time to have thenbsp; resources necessary to engage with the ailments of theoretical discourse in the contemporary environment of global capitalism, and the steady dismantling of the traditional infrastructure of the human sciences and philosophy. This article provides an outline of the key positions espoused in Badiou#39;s key work Being and Event, and an assessment of its contemporary import.
    • All That We Are: Philosophical Anthropology and Ecophilosophy

      Keith R Peterson; Colby College (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2010-08-04)
      Ecophilosophers have long argued that addressing the environmental crisis not only demands reassessing the ethical aspects of human and nature relations, but also prevailing theories of human nature. Philosophical anthropology has historically taken this as its calling, and its resources may be profitably utilized in the context of ecophilosophy. Distinguishing between conservative and emancipatory naturalism leads to a critical discussion of the Cartesian culture/nature dualism. Marjorie Grene is discussed as a resource in the tradition of philosophical anthropology which enables us to avoid dualistic thinking and espouse an emancipatory naturalism by resisting reductionism and acknowledging the diffuse dependence of human being on natural processes. In order to fully explicate the conditions of human dependence upon nature it becomes necessary to define an appropriate approach to ontology. This critical ontology facilitates a stratified understanding of the place of humans in nature without lapsing into reductivism or post-Kantian constructivism. It provides a sounder basis than either alternative for motivating a many- sided ecophilosophical perspective on human being.
    • An Emergent Language of Paradox: Riffs on Steven M. Rosen’s Kleinian Signification of Being

      Lisa Maroski (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2017-01-27)
      First, I briefly recapitulate the main points of Rosen’s article, namely, that the word “Being” does not adequately signify the paradoxical unification of subject and object and that the Klein bottle can serve as a more appropriate sign-vehicle than the word. I then propose to apply his insight more widely; however, in order to do that, it is first necessary to identify infra- and exostructures of language, including culture, category structure, logic, metaphor, semantics, syntax, concept, and sign vehicles, that preserve the status quo and keep subject and object disjunct. After analyzing those infra/exostructures, I engage a complementary process, coagulatio, in order to spark ideas for innovating ways in which more of those facets of language can embrace paradox.
    • An Entangled Dream Series: Fragmentation, Wholeness and the Collective Unconscious

      Judy B. Gardiner (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2015-11-29)
      Based on an experiential dream series this consciousness study shapes a theory that the fragmentary nature of dreams seeks wholeness deriving from the Collective Unconscious. As dreams evolve from a microscopic-personal worldview to a macroscopic-transpersonal dimension, concern for survival of self is augmented with concern for survival of the species. Entangled dream imagery provides cues to quantum functions actualized through the tutelage of departed scientific luminaries. The intentionality, specificity, and information input experienced in the communications imply that the collective unconscious and quantum cognition are an integrated structure revealing an underlying methodology.
    • An Explosive Genealogy: Theatre, Philosophy and the Art of Presentation

      Oliver Feltham (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2006-10-27)
      Not only in its conceptual reconstruction but also in the straightforward application of Badioursquo;s thought its problems and tensions come to light. This paper thus sets out to identify a generic truth procedure in the domain of art; specifically within theatre starting out from the Meyerhold-event and tracing enquiries in the work of Artaud and Brecht. It turns out once one follows the lines of further enquiries one ends up sketching an explosive genealogy that gives rise to the concept of an art of presentation transgressing the boundaries of theatre, art and philosophy.
    • An Incomplete Definition of Reality

      Boris DeWiel; University of Northern British Columbia (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2013-07-08)
      A reality may be defined incompletely as a perpetuating pattern of relations. This definition denies the name of reality to an utter and totalistic patternlessness, like a primal patternless stuff, because a patternless all-ness would be indistinguishable from a patternless nothingness. If reality began from a chaos or patternless stuff, it became a reality only when it became patterned. If there are orders of reality with perpetuating relations between them, as in Cartesian interactive substance dualism, the definition allows us to say that these orders belong to a common reality by virtue of those relations. However, the definition is silent on the question of whether reality is ultimately pluralistic. Some suggestions are made about the possibility of stuffless patterns, including those of the physical world, but the definition is not dependent on the possibility of stufflessness.
    • An Introduction to Mathematical Metaphysics

      Christopher Langan (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2017-03-26)
      In these early years of the new millennium, there has been considerable academic concern over the stubbornness of Cartesian dualism and the conceptual difficulty of uniting the mental and physical sides of reality. Meanwhile, it has gone all but unnoticed in academic circles that the formal aspect of this challenge was met decades ago, and in the most effective possible way. This paper contains a brief introductory account of the work in question, including a highly simplified description of the logicomathematical reasoning needed for the proper high-level theoretical description of reality. Everything follows from the requirements of this objective. Aside from the author's own writings, there is as yet no well-defined field of mathematical metaphysics. Being an explanation of the author's previous work, this paper is largely an exercise in self-reference. The same applies to its bibliography. Conveniently enough, this is well in accord a major theme herein emphasized, namely, the self-referential nature of reality.
    • Ancient Shamanism and Modern Psychotherapy: From Athropology to Evidence-Based Psychodelic Medicine

      Nicola Luigi Bragazzi; Hicham Khabbache; Ignazio Vecchio; Mariano Martini; Marco Perduca; Riccardo Zerbetto; Tania Simona Re (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2018-01-13)
      In the last years, the debate on the therapeutic use of psychoactive drugs and compounds has intensified and has attracted a progressively growing body of research as well as of conferences and training courses. This is anticipated to revolutionize future mental health care. However, a medieval obscurantist climate remains that hinders further advances in the field. The research field of psychoactive drugs, despite its promises, is characterized by a number of challenges which, in the future, should be addressed, concerning, for instance, their potential therapeutic use. There is a concrete possibility to revitalize the use of these substances by bridging past and present, combining ancient knowledge and modern science to serve new therapeutic paradigms.
    • Animality and Rationality in Human Beings: Towards Enriching Contemporary Educational Studies

      Koichiro Misawa; Tokyo University of Social Welfare (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2014-12-15)
      “What is the nature of the beings that we are?” is perhaps the most difficult question. The difficulty lies in our being a natural animal in a normative environment. In harmony with John McDowell’s conception of a naturalism of second nature, this paper claims that we should not rest satisfied with the predominant scientific picture in which the seeming rift between our animality and our rationality is to be resolved by detailed studies of empirically knowable facts about our animal modes of existence. Instead, appreciating the sui generis character of a distinctive mode of human engagement with the world is a necessary clearing of the ground and an essential first step toward addressing meticulously the above difficult question on human nature. The paper suggests that the human sciences in general and education studies in particular should start off not with disclosed first-natural facts but with a sensitivity to second-natural backgrounds that set the stage for the first-natural facts. 
    • Antagonism and Subjectification in the Poem of Resistance

      Ministry of Science and Innovation of the Spanish Government (Research Project FFI2009-12746); Arturo Casas; University of Santiago de Compostela (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2010-12-20)
      This article offers a pragmatic and relational analysis of the controversial heuristic of cultural resistance and presents some of the problems that affect the production and distribution of the poetic discourses of resistance and emancipation. To that end, it focuses on the incorporation of the historicity and the historic contingency of conflict as key elements of the subjectification constituted by the poem of resistance as “poem for the political”. It also explores the applicability of certain notions common to the contemporary critical tradition, as developed by scholars such as Badiou, Mouffe, Rancière, Bal and Žižek.
    • Apperceptive Patterning: Artefaction, Extensional Beliefs and Cognitive Scaffolding

      Ekin Erkan; The New Centre of Research & Practice (Cosmos Publishing Cooperative, 2020-05-06)
      In "Psychopower and Ordinary Madness" my ambition, as it relates to Bernard Stiegler's recent literature, was twofold: 1) critiquing Stiegler's work on exosomatization and artefactual posthumanism-or, more specifically, nonhumanism-to problematize approaches to media archaeology that rely upon technical exteriorization; 2) challenging how Stiegler engages with Giuseppe Longo and Francis Bailly's conception of negative entropy. These efforts were directed by a prevalent techno-cultural qualifier: the rise of Synthetic Intelligence (including neural nets, deep learning, predictive processing and Bayesian models of cognition). This paper continues this project but first directs a critical analytic lens at the Derridean practice of the ontologization of grammatization from which Stiegler emerges while also distinguishing how metalanguages operate in relation to object-oriented environmental interaction by way of inferentialism. Stalking continental (Kapp, Simondon, Leroi-Gourhan, etc.) and analytic traditions (e.g., Carnap, Chalmers, Clark, Sutton, Novaes, etc.), we move from artefacts to AI and Predictive Processing so as to link theories related to technicity with philosophy of mind. Simultaneously drawing forth Robert Brandom's conceptualization of the roles that commitments play in retrospectively reconstructing the social experiences that lead to our endorsement(s) of norms, we compliment this account with Reza Negarestani's deprivatized account of intelligence while analyzing the equipollent role between language and media (both digital and analog).