Jason Reza Jorjani isn’t much of a name in philosophy. In fact, if you have heard of him at all it is virtually guaranteed that you think he’s a dangerous reactionary devil, alt-right if not outright fascistic. He and his work are weird. It’s a fascinating thing to find people that are truly weird, fitting neither here nor there on our usual dichotomies. In a way it is a profoundly Hegelian thing, in another it’s simply what one should expect of a Philosopher, that they should not fall into the stereotypical paradigm. It is not so much that Jorjani is a profound philosopher of new insights, in fact I find little that is new as such (if at all). What we find new, however, is his synthesis of disparate elements and an attempt to create a new image of thought of otherness in the form of the weird.
There is a cliche and famous phrase about ‘comforting the disturbed and disturbing the comfortable,’ and if we are to ask which of these Jorjani is intent on doing it is certainly both, but primarily the latter. He discomforts us by bringing up the possible reality of the paranormal, by tearing our beliefs of the world apart to a radical degree in destroying the difference of mind and matter. He comforts us, however, in telling us it’s not so bad… in fact, it’s great. Great in the sense that things are great when a stranger bursts through your door and shocks you awake from a rather mundane dream and says, “Good news everyone! Everything you know is wrong!” Well, what’s could possibly be good about that? We shall see. What follows is an overview of the essay The Spectral Revolution from Jorjani’s book Prometheus and Atlas.
If one were to ask me what I think Jorjani’s main task seems to be, I could only respond by setting it up as a foil to another work quite different and quite alien to it: Mark Fisher’s Capitalist Realism. In that we are at a historical point where we can imagine and conceive the possibility of the end of everything except capitalism according to the now deceased Fisher, Jorjani’s Prometheus and Atlas puts forth a valiant response as to how and why we must conceive a new world beyond it. If communism was a specter that once haunted and still haunts the capitalist world, Jorjani posits that two far more powerful and far more terrifying specters have haunted the world through the lineage we call Western culture. Prometheus and Atlas are the mythical and titanic specters of technology and scientific modeling, and they are mighty specters indeed.
Behind our backs, unconsciously, they have maneuvered and puppeteered humanity insofar as we have not been aware of them, i.e. aware of the practical nature of techno-science, of its origin in our activities. We have been spooked in that we believe technology is just a tool, and that scientific models are reality itself. We have also been spooked by our unconsciousness about our social backgrounds, our ideologies, and our own personal daemons as drives and desires. The essence of the spectral is the present absence of an Other which is and is not at once here and not here. It haunts us in that it affects us unseen, in its eerie proximity at a distance, in that is the most intimate yet alien to us.
Jorjani’s answer to Fisher is this: there is a genuine vision of post-capitalism, but it is nothing like what the Left or Right as merely politically interested parties have ever imagined. Only if we come to awareness of our specters, of the truth of techno-science, will we have the chance to achieve a world truly beyond capitalist ideology as well as capitalist life. Marx was, therefore, right. Only the push of the means of production as technology and science will kill capitalism, but Jorjani sees technology not simply as machines, i.e. tools, but as praxis itself. What does this new world look like? It is—wait for it—archeo-futuristic, identitarian, anti-traditional, progressive, anti-democratic, classically-liberal, epistemically anarchistic, techno-scientific, anti-religious, spiritual, rationalist, organic, aristocratically elitist, meritocratic, and radically pragmatic for ultimately aesthetic ends. His positions encompass elements from the traditional Right and Left, he agrees with both sides only to disagree with them and offer his own chimera. An aesthetic politics of realized power, a society of philosopher-scientist-artists is what he offers.—If one is a ‘Leftist’ one would recoil in horror, recognizing here (and knowing Jorjani’s historical connections) the philosophical ground of fascism in aestheticism. This may be so, but I am not a partisan of labels, and simply because positions are essentially right leaning does not mean they are for that reason immediately wrong. I dare say that Jorjani has many good points which are true, just not true enough.
A self-avowed post-modernist who gives no quarter to metanarratives and does not privilege Reason, Jorjani nonetheless attacks the post-modern as lacking positivity. He is a Nietzschean positivist, a proud imperialist of the Ideal landscape who would sooner have us submit to the higher aesthetic truth of the übermensch of his ruthlessly ungrounded society rather than have us step back into the shadows of comfortable tradition again. An archeo-futurist is what he deems himself, reaching into the past to dredge up from its muck the specters of all the cultural myths and pseudoscience we believe we have left behind, a past that haunts us unseen in our unreflecting dogmatism. He is at once antitraditional and progressive yet highly traditionalist, proclaiming unwaveringly the supremacy of the Western Spirit which has conquered the world and the value of taking up its cultural legacy. He dared at one point to consort with the “deplorable” elements of society we now call the ‘alt-right’ in an attempt to redirect the movement from within by bending their language and showing them the stupidity of their traditionalism and nationalism. Despite his short lived alliance with the alt-right, Jorjani was, strangely, not shy to connect himself to the legacy of Marx though he is not a Marxist or a Leftist. He is also not shy to call upon the ruinous power of Hegel: his rationalism, progressivism, and cosmopolitanism. Nietzsche, Heidegger, Derrida, Schelling, Marx, Hegel, and more—one can only say that if Dr. Jorjani were Dr. Frankenstein, he’d be proud to reveal the titanic theoretical monstrosity he has developed.
The spectral is a single concept which unifies three ontological domains: intelligibility, theory as such, and Nature. Spectral is at once spectrum, evanescence, and the terror of specters. In that intelligibility is spectral it shows itself to break the typical either/or thinking of the understanding, it violates the law of the excluded middle and makes no absolute hard distinctions of the categories of reality—all that is comprehended is comprehended on a spectrum. In that theory is spectral it is evanescent contingence, it is a ghostly projection onto the existent Natural world which exceeds the limits of our theories and dissolves their reality in manifesting that which is beyond our models of the world. In that Nature or Being is spectral it is something other to itself, beyond itself, unreal in its very reality. Nature’s spectrality reveals itself to us most strongly in the reality of the paranormal, particularly the psychic, as the beyond which confronts us with ghosts of our own reality that by our scientific model accounts should not exist, but which in existing only show the unreality or spectrality of our models and our very being. The radical spectrality of Nature leads to the spectrality of Being itself where self-conscious being is, as Jorjani quotes Derrida, both “spooking” and “spooked,” “inhabited by its own specter.” This spooking other of self-consciousness is most clearly the unconscious self which is yet is not quite us.
One may perhaps wish to take these spectral ghosts as mere metaphors of the anomalies which appear as unaccounted in orthodox scientific theories, or the spectral character of knowledge and knowing, however Jorjani is not timid and does not fear to make a scientific apology for the paranormal’s reality. The spectral is, if one may give a Hegelian phrasing to it (one which Jorjani surely would deny), the absolute form of cognition and being in that it is the only self-conscious form of theoretical practice for Jorjani.
Spectrality as such is truly not about ghosts, time, or self-consciousness. Spectrality is not a thing, it is an absent presence of self-dissolution, an incessant otherness—in fact it truly is the otherness of Being itself, i.e. that to be is to be always already othered and othering.
In revealing the pragmatic reality of all theory, all is thrown into uncertainty in the endless churn. It is particularly with the spectrality of Nature that Jorjani grasps the absolute flux of all scientific models, for if psychic phenomena are real the division of subject and object has been dissolved on a level where our reality essentially becomes inextricable in its very being from our beliefs and attitudes towards the world—the objective world becomes an intertwined work with our subjective models of it and thus is spectral in its objective nature. Nature is spectral in other ways far more fundamental than paranormal spooks: time and its moments are one spectrality we are most intimately familiar with, and the division of time itself spooks nature itself by othering its spatial being not into self-identical independents, but as spectral themselves. All Being, or rather Dasein (existence), is spooked by an otherness in requiring an otherness for its existence.
In that the spectral is the beyond it is the other, or otherness as such; it is the “un-homely” or “uncanny” as Freud calls it. Derrida links the other to existential temporality, and sees that existential temporality presupposes the spectral. In that the spectral as beyond of Nature/Being itself is real and effective presence it is also unreal (non-actual) and non-effective. What does Jorjani have in mind? Many things, one can guarantee. To give some examples of what comes to my mind: the spectrality of purposes, the future which is not yet is already determining the present, the spectrality of all moments of time which are and are not present, the spectrality of temporality itself. On the paranormal side, however, he has ghosts in mind, the effective presence of something physically and as such substantially not there; more ontologically: the being of non-being. The reality of the spectral, and particularly the spectrality of time, gives rise to a view in which the past is not simply dead and gone, and the future is not simply dead and unborn. We can (and are) haunted by specters from both the long past and far future, with the former we mainly think of ghosts, with the latter we think of premonitions and precognitions.
Hegel, in the Phenomenology of Spirit, talks precisely of this inseparability of the object from its theoretical cognition, but this has been entirely comprehended in a theoretical self-abstraction of social cognition, i.e. that what we believe objects to be is only what our conceptual and sense cognition itself has come to be. Jorjani radicalizes this to its realist extreme: the object is not just conceptually limited as the object of consciousness’s cognition, but can be objectively limited by the ur-concept of consciousness in that through the profound mystery of psi the unconscious mind may exert a power of intellectual intuition which effects direct determinations on the object behind our conscious backs. —Jorjani offers the hypothesis of something known in parapsychology as the effect a skeptic has on psychic experiments through the psychic counter-power of their disbelief in the phenomena. Insofar as we take for granted the possibility of psi, it would not be much of a stretch that if belief powers the strength and manifestation of phenomena, then counter belief likewise must have a dampening effect as its own psi manifestation.
Of particular import is the reality of telepathic psi, and so the spectrality of Nature, as making clear our atomistic individuality as spectral. The notion of absolute personal otherness is revealed by telepathy to be completely dissolved: no one is safe from being pried open in the most radical sense not just of being witnessed, but in being engaged to act through what is called ‘remote influencing’. In the long running secretly funded government projects into psi phenomena such as the famous Project Stargate which studied remote viewing, many experiments were done into just about anything one could conceive. According to the scientists involved (Targ and Puthoff), what was found was that not just external things, events, persons, and places were up to be viewed and experienced, but the contents of individual minds at the level of remote empathy of feelings and perceptions. This connection by necessity goes both ways: If we can ‘read’ and ‘write’ we can also be written if we do not bracket what we read. This must be understood as an immediate reality not staggered by time: to read someone is to allow oneself to be written by the transcription of what one reads. Anecdotes of this from former psi operatives in the CIA programs exist, telling of the level to which a remote viewer can fall into such an identification with a read experience. The psi experimenter is of necessity entangled and part of their own experiment.
If Nature is spectral, then even more so is any ontology or epistemology. Following William James, Jorjani sees the scientific acceptance of psi as the next true meta-scientific revolution. The unveiling of psi would not be simply a revolution of one domain of science, but all domains of science. Not only that, it is a revolution of science itself in that such a revolution shall in essence obliterate the subject/object divide on ontological and epistemic grounds. In that the structures of unconscious intents are shown to determine the world, the structures of conscious intents in scientific modeling shall likewise be revealed for what they are: world-determining activities which are not ‘purely objective.’
The first step to show the spectrality of theory, however, is not in the immediate appeal to the alien character of the paranormal, but to the socially and practically determined character of all theoretical knowledge. Jorjani, as a pragmatist, places ultimate importance on practice as the ground and purpose of science. Practice, however, is never just my lone practice, but a practice within a social whole. In that my practice vanishes into a network of relations directly unseen, I am spooked by the specter of my social background.
Thomas Kuhn is one of the first philosophers to gain major traction for the notion that “facts” as such do not truly exist, that facts are always theoretically laden, and that the origin of theoretical determination is not to be found in the dead objects of theory themselves, but in cognitive matters quite different to passive receptivity. Coining the term paradigm, Kuhn shows how scientific revolutions are not a simple process of a mere cumulative advancement, but of radical change in the very concept of what an object even is—a change so radical that from one paradigm to another, even in the same field, communication is impossible due to the incommensurability of the meaning of concepts with the same name. Science progresses, according to Kuhn, only when a paradigm is established and worked within in simply working out the determination of practical details without much question of the foundational concepts of a theory itself. Kuhn does not delve deeply into the practico-social origin of new concepts, however, and self-contradictingly takes a meta-stance on science in making a physicalist reduction of cognition to the process of the brain. Not only that, but Kuhn is also hopeful that science may free itself from external contamination such as political or economic interests.
Due to Kuhn’s failure in this regard Jorjani brings up the work of Paul Feyerabend, one of the most famous yet radically controversial of the great philosophers of science. Feyerabend’s epistemic anarchism calls for the advancement of science by letting go of the notion that science properly demands a monolithic theoretical architecture to advance, for he sees science for what it is: practical model building and experimentation. Like Kuhn’s theory of science, Feyerabend’s would necessarily allow the various ‘schools’ of scientific theory to work within themselves in puzzle solving, but it would also provide the benefit of critical conceptual dialectics to be engaged in that various schools would be forced to admit their lacks just as much as their strengths when compared to other camps. A true meritocracy of theory and practice would arise in that nothing should be hidden in such a practice of science, all things, especially the unaccounted, excluded, and hidden in other views would be open to the light of public awareness and scrutiny such that simple ignorance or hand waved explaining away would not suffice. With Feyerabend’s model of science no one would have a monopoly on Truth, not because anything goes, but because the notion of scientific truth itself is revealed as inherent to a theoretical framework organizing practice.
Jorjani brings in the social dimension of theoretical knowledge with Foucault’s episteme as a social process of discursive practices. These discursive practices, linguistic or otherwise, are practices first and theoretical second. Objects of knowledge do not precede these practices and their contexts, they rise and fall with them. The episteme is a total worldview constituted by discursive practices, a worldview which posits for us the very concept of what it is to be a valid object; thus, when one encounters anything at all the very question of what it is that we are seeing is entirely mediated by our lived episteme. Jorjani thus states: Observations are not only theory-laden, but fully theoretical. An object discovered is not independent of its context of discovery, i.e. the object does not of itself reveal its truth to us, but only is revealed insofar as we attempt to pry it open by pondering what it may be and how it may function. Where one episteme sees an appearance and prophecy as ancestral spirits, another modern one sees but subjective hallucination and mere correct guess. The major point of Feyerabend and Foucault’s theses for Jorjani is the definitely non-objective nature of knowledge, i.e. that knowledge is not a mere reflection of the Real. Foucault’s theory accentuates Feyerabend’s in making clear the link—in fact the identity—of knowledge to power such that knowledge is never a disinterested pursuit, never a merely passive observation, and never itself a passive practice that simply lets the world be. In that knowledge requires a power base, this power base is never itself grounded on the simple being of nature.
The identity of power is not to be grasped as a mere social consideration, or as it is in the public consciousness as a repressive outside force on the self. Jorjani takes a Nietzschean view of power. Power here is truly meant in ontological sense: knowledge is power in that power is all that is positive. Power manifests itself in actions and knowledge is the recollection of actions. Power does not act on or from, but through individuals and institutions. In that action is not a theoretical matter, but instead precedes theory and is what grounds and advances new theoretical endeavors it is also grounded in power. We learn new things on the foundation of what we can do, and what we do is power manifested. It is no mystery that much of what arises in science does not appear in calculated theory nor well posed hypothetical questions, but in the surprise of the result of free or playful actions: I wonder what happens when I do Y with X?
Rather than looking into the past, one may perhaps look into modern attempts to overcome the current paradigm. Joseph Firmage, a name now virtually unknown, but which shocked the world almost three decades ago when he left his high corporate position to chase dreams of space-flight engineering due to an alien communication, found massive funding for his rather unorthodox ideas concerning possible ‘new physics’ of propulsion based on gyroscopic ‘anti-gravitic’ effects. If Firmage’s breakthrough occurs, one can bet it is on the back of major financial powers with a vested interest in cornering such a revolutionary market. Much less controversial, and now a historical blip, was the vested interest of oil companies in purposefully lobbying strongly to delay if not squash electric vehicle developments in the early 2000s. It is not unknown and unheard of that corporations and governments do much to buy out or silence new technologies through costly court procedures if not outright intimidation tactics for the purposes of maintaining power. All endeavors of knowledge come with the actualization of power, our own, someone else’s, or something else’s.
In that epistemes originate with such endeavors of power, ideologies not grounded in objective being, and this origin remains an uncritical presupposition, science necessarily remains dogmatic and ideological. Unlike Foucault, however, Jorjani thinks we can at least rise to the knowledge of this ideological nature and thus mitigate if not outright negate it by coming to grips with this background determination. In acknowledging the practical and provisional ground of all theory we free ourselves to transcend any bound that is merely ideological and not truly real. To put it another way: in finally acknowledging the spectral character of our knowledge (and being) we shall in this grasp also achieve the grasp and being of our own spectrality. In letting go of ourselves and becoming fully spectral we no longer object to the true object of reality, one that itself is spectral, and so we no longer try to cage it nor ourselves under pretensions of final knowledge which is rigid, distinct, and unchanging.
In a show of his position of absolute pragmatism, Jorjani sides (and I agree) with the concept of language being use, i.e. activity, rather than reference. The meaning of any discourse is the activity of that discourse. Science, therefore, begins with passionate activity and its posterior recollection, not with calculated sober rationality. To this end Jorjani posits that at its highest realization science becomes aesthetic and imaginary in that science no longer constrains itself to what is, it moves even beyond what we merely want to be, but becomes a purely aesthetic play in a creative process of ever new facts through recontextualization in the bending of language and concepts for new uses. In other words: Whiteheadian-Deleuzianism is the proper philosophical attitude. The job of the philosopher-scientist-artist is no longer to attempt final full explanation, but to create new concepts with which we can view the world and perhaps see new things.
Because science is not purely a one-directional progressive science, Jorjani claims, we should just as much consider returning to the ancient past for glimpses of new ways to conceive things, ways which we have forgotten and which if renewed may give us insights into facts heretofore hidden by assumptions in our orthodox views. Not just science as we know it, but all sciences ever conceived enter our box of practical tools. We already know, if we have studied our history and philosophy of science, that many a scientific insight has come from what is now considered utterly unscientific. Hermeticism was a major player in the Enlightenment pursuit of knowledge by what many now consider sober materialists. The fathers of modern physics were influenced by Western and Eastern mysticism in their conceptions of the nature of objects and objectivity. We know that science fiction itself has driven our search and creation of technologies and theories. Indeed, Jorjani says, why make a distinction of science as a subject matter from anything else? The history of science and the philosophy of science become part of the practice of science itself. Everything is the subject domain of science, including science itself. Here, I think, Jorjani walks close to Hegel’s dream of Science, philosophy realized, as a practice from which nothing is beyond its purview.
Any body of knowledge which claims to have some explanatory and efficacious capacity is a science. Feyerabend claims that astrology, voodoo, and witchcraft are subjects to be taken as serious as any other science, for they have genuine knowledge to teach us still. The notion of astrology, that the planets and stars affect us, is by our own comprehensions necessarily true. The art of voodoo has knowledge of our physiology and anatomy inherent to it. What these ‘disciplines’ lack today is precisely that: discipline to clear out their own theoretical garbage and seek their truth. Modern science has failed, according to Feyerabend, in simply dismissing these other theories of reality without having studied them thoroughly as to properly refute them. This is undeniably true: the modern “scholar” holds themselves above testing, above looking at what they refute before making smug matter-of-fact pretentious proclamations that there is nothing to what has offended their theoretical sensibilities.
To add to the woes of any orthodoxy of academia or from the ‘I fucking love science’ crowd, Jorjani proclaims that the holy object of scientific pretensions to objectivity, technology, is itself not what it seems. Following Heidegger, he understands technology not as a tool, but as something else. For Jorjani technology is praxis, it is the very way we do things. The essence of technology is power qua action, and more suitably it is spectral. Technology as such is a spectral and spectralizing force in the world. It is spectral in that in developing it it haunts us with its unseen reflexion upon us beyond our conscious intents. It is spectralizing in that, as Marx says, with it “all that is solid melts into air” in the process of technological developments which continuously shift from development to development. Technology is as such not just machines, it is material practices, it is thought practices, it is psychic practices.
The Spectral Revolution
Because an episteme is not indifferent to its social world, a revolution of the episteme is the revolution of an entire way of life—a revolution in politics. The reality of psi in particular, Jorjani concludes, is the end of state secrecy of any kind. In fact it is the end of secrecy of all kind for all people.
Here Jorjani closes the essay with a recounting of Derrida’s Specters of Marx and Telepathy which bring to light the virtually unknown and unspoken connection of Freud to the paranormal. Freud was not just fascinated and intrigued by telepathy, but convinced by experiments he carried out himself. In confirming the reality of these phenomena for himself Freud came to believe that telepathy was to be a necessary complement to his theory of the unconscious, a complement which would link psychoanalysis to the waking and objective world of matter and life. The great terror of this realization, however, is that the unconscious bleeds over necessarily into the waking real. The repressed desires, the dreams, the unconscious complexes all suddenly are no more mere individual problems, but become the source of catastrophic anxiety in the knowledge that what is deepest and most inner to us, both of the best and worst kind, may affect those who may never be aware of our inner lives—or worse, it may bleed into their consciousness and reveal our inner lives unknowingly. An incestuous dream from nowhere may reveal to a mother the incestuous desire of her son.
In that the spectral as paranormal is real we may find that we are haunted by our own unconscious projections, be they partially projected from our conscious willing or our unconscious intuitions or intents. Jorjani ponders whether in a world where such things as the psychic are grasped as real we may see wisdom in witch hunts, demonology, or exorcism. In a world where remote viewing anywhere, anything, and any time is possible he ponders whether we would consider arresting people before they commit crimes such as in the film Minority Report. As a good spectral pragmatist, of course, Jorjani does not bother to speculate on what is to come.
Amazingly, despite how important such a revolution of the political would be, Jorjani has nothing but a paragraph to say about in his essay. One might speculate emptily into nefarious reasons for this, perhaps an attempt to hide his right-wing tendencies. I would dare say this isn’t so, for later in the book, and really much elsewhere in his other works and interview/lectures, Jorjani has no issue in following Heidegger every step of the way to the extremes of echoing his praise of Nazism’s ‘spiritual’ essence. This is not to say that Jorjani is truly sympathetic to Nazism at all. If one looks over his works and talks one finds that the little he mentions in praise of the alt-right and even extreme right is in fact nothing but a facade of double-speak in which he masks his views in terms of what his audience is familiar with—when in Rome, speak Latin. His antidemocratic stance, his Nietzschean elitism, his irrationalism, and his metaphysics of war stand in almost absolute contrast to our current day sensibilities and beliefs about politics and reality. Jorjani strangely echoes the Hegelian state and its organicism, but he does it in the manner of Heidegger and the romantics such that what appears is an incomplete form lacking rational validation other than that it is a stable episteme of pure power and a will to power towards some arbitrarily desired aesthetic ideal. For Jorjani all of existence is a war of Being, and all societies themselves must eventually come to war to establish their aesthetic ideals as existent.
It is surprising, then, that Jorjani has seemingly opposite tendencies in what would otherwise be an easily reducible and simple to attack fascism. He is not a racist, but he is no egalitarian of individuals, for some are better than others and by virtue of their will to power deserve to be higher in society. But pure power wielded without wisdom is not what he seeks, for such blind power is itself not worthy of anyone who strives towards ever higher power. Because knowledge is power, the knowledgeable of practical matters shall wield more power in the end. He is not a nationalist in the sense of a state, for he is a cosmopolitan who believes in a one-world state and centralized undemocratic power to meet great problems with the immediate response they require. He is a lover of culture and thought and sees value and truth even in what others would consider his mortal enemies, such as Marx’s work. He is not a corporatist, not a capitalist, etc.
Such a revolution of politics certainly would change things, but I am negatively skeptical the Nazis, or even the Soviets (who were the first to begin mass secret studies of the paranormal thanks to their getting the Nazi’s archives on the subjects), are the model of what we are to expect if the paranormal was real or simply if we took Nietzsche seriously. The original movement of fascism was, against what many Marxist accounts now ignorantly posit, not reducible to capitalism as ‘corporatism’ in the unity of state and economy, one could say it actually did offer an alternate vision, a negative vision of modernity which we did not come to accept. The Nazis more than the Italians carried fascism to its extreme in pursuing the complete antithesis inherent in the Kantian revolution of reason, that subjective mind as will is the true noumena. Thus, a culture of pure will to power, a science of practice over theoretical understanding, a politics of aesthetic nature, and a social program of extreme self-development for the greatness of the self as embodied state. Of all people to attempt to offer an alternative to modernity’s problem, for Heidegger the Nazis were the only ones to truly do so in a way that he believed might have worked. If one only reads the beautiful picture of the revolutionized society Jorjani hopes for it is indeed a beautiful picture. Of course, it is just a picture. The Nazi regime, despite having some few and core positives, proved that this picture is an illusion and a dangerous lie. Jorjani himself is aware and clearly states the dangers of aesthetic politics as a possibility of incredible disaster.
The truth of the matter is that the spectral revolution of the episteme itself would be enough to radically destroy any current state apparatus. In fact this is a highly Marxist point: base and superstructure. If the latter changes the first must change. Marx believed that if we realized that economics and politics were our products we could free ourselves from our enslavement to them. Though Marx meant specter and spook in a derogatory sense unlike Jorjani, he also recognized these words were fitting for the nature of the problem humanity was dealing with. A spectral revolution must come. The revelation that humanity has been spooked for eons will set it free, but unlike what Marx believed it shall not be to free humanity to see objective reality and remove itself from ideology as such. The spectral revolution will reveal to humanity the ultimate nature of reality, the Ideal, and further, that much of the Ideal’s highest reality is an aesthetic projection made reality and in the shape of living Truth. In this manner humanity may begin to use its power of objective projection to will whatever reality it chooses.
* * * *
Certainly most who read this are to be put off by the consideration of the paranormal in any serious manner. However, I respond preemptively echoing Feyerabend: You who realize the spectrality of science and technology, how can you claim to believe what you do if you then refuse to look at alternate theories? Surely one that grasps the social grounding of science should question their own presuppositions? With Feyerabend I call upon you to take the standpoint of the Other seriously and honestly, seeking not to destroy it from without and completely missing the point, but simply to see how far it is true from within itself and in correspondence to its own presupposed object. Along with William James you may find that you have dismissed something due not to any lack of objectivity or evidence, but simply because you had already chosen to disbelieve despite evidence. In the acceptance that something is there, however, you need not accept the presuppositions and theories of that something. Allow yourself to be spooked, and you will find something to chase and discover.
Jorjani’s originality is undeniably two things: his eclectic mixing of the philosophical and the modern paranormal and parapsychological through the originality of spectrality, and his futuristic vision of a world beyond us now, but not beyond us in principle, the world of Prometheus and Atlas. If Mark Fisher lamented in Capitalist Realism that we live in an era in which we can imagine anything except the end of capitalism, that even the Marxist communists and all other flavor of Leftists or Right Wingers failed to provide a vision of a world that wasn’t just another projection of capitalist life with changes here or there, Jorjani responds with concept of the specter, particularly in the forms of Prometheus and Atlas. In that Prometheus is the specter of technology and Atlas is the specter of science, the society which results from the apprehension that we have so far been possessed by such specters in more ways than one is something Jorjani specifically recognizes as beyond capitalism.
A new Atlantis awaits us, Jorjani proclaims, if we can find the power to take hold of these spirits for ourselves. The aim of the spectral revolution is not, like with Marx, to exorcise the daemonic forces of the Ideal as spectral, but to make a reversal: to possess the possessor and take them as our own power. Not simply because we can, but we must if we are to become free at all.