Saturday, May 22, 2010

pieces of orson

This is what contemporary philosophy is like:

Say the great Orson Welles just died and a lot of odd necrophilic actors and directors have access to his corpse. One group cuts off a finger; one gets his head; others, respectively, get his organs, feet, etc.

Then they all argue and compete about who Has Orson. "But we have his head that he thought with!", "But I have his finger that he directed with!", "But us, over here, we have his liver for crying out loud!!" You get the idea.

But isn't it true that none of them Has Orson? Orson is dead. His life is gone. Only his corpse remains, and these lunatics are all running around with pieces of that corpse, saying that their piece is the right piece. And all the while, the pieces rot.

Substitute philosophy for Orson Welles, and contemporary "philosophers" for the necrophilic thespians (I can't decide whether this or "theatrical necrophiles" sounds better), and you have the state of contemporary philosophy.

Every one of them thinks (or believes? or knows?) they have the philosophers' stone, but they're all dealing in cement dust.

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