Secular Ecstasy: Kant and the Capitalist Violence of Reason

Southern Nights

You need chaos in your soul to give birth to a dancing star.
……– Friedrich Nietzsche

There is in divine things a transparency so great that one slips into illuminated depths of laughter…
……– Georges Bataille

Bataille in Inner Experience brings us to the edge of the impossible: “to face the impossible – exorbitant, indubitable – when nothing is possible any longer is in my eyes to have an experience of the divine; it is analogous to a torment.1 At the heart of Bataille’s secular mysticism is the notion of sacrificial negativity, whether in the form of mysticism, eroticism, art, poetry, gambling, or any other – “deficit operations,” that he discovers the key to “sovereign” existence; an “existence free of all limitations of interest”. Following Durkheim he would divide the world into Sacred / Profane, and against the profane world of work and utilitarian, goal oriented, purposeful…

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