Adoration: The Deconstruction of Christianity II

Adoration: The Deconstruction of Christianity II

JEAN-LUC NANCY
Translated by John McKeane
John D. Caputo series editor
Copyright Date: 2013
Published by: Fordham University Press
Pages: 136
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt13x08c4
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  • Book Info
    Adoration: The Deconstruction of Christianity II
    Book Description:

    Adoration is the second volume of the Deconstruction of Christianity, following Dis-Enclosure. The first volume attempted to demonstrate why it is necessary to open reason up not to a religious dimension but to one transcending reason as we have been accustomed to understanding it; the term "adoration" attempts to name the gesture of this dis-enclosed reason. Adoration causes us to receive ignorance as truth: not a feigned ignorance, perhaps not even a "nonknowledge," nothing that would attempt to justify the negative again, but the simple, naked truth that there is nothing in the place of God, because there is no place for God. The outside of the world opens us in the midst of the world, and there is no first or final place. Each one of us is at once the first and the last. Each one, each name. And our ignorance is made worse by the fact that we do not know whether we ought to name this common and singular property of all names. We must remain in this suspense, hesitating between and stammering in various possible languages, ultimately learning to speak anew. In this book, Jean-Luc Nancy goes beyond his earlier historical and philosophical thought and tries to think-or at least crack open a little to thinking-a stance or bearing that might be suitable to the retreat of God that results from the self-deconstruction of Christianity. Adoration may be a manner, a style of spirit for our time, a time when the "spiritual" seems to have become so absent, so dry, so adulterated. The book is a major contribution to the important strand of attempts to think a "post-secular" situation of religion.

    eISBN: 978-0-8232-4635-9
    Subjects: Religion

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Translator’s Note
    (pp. ix-xii)
  4. Prologue
    (pp. 1-9)

    Spirit as it awakes is doubtless nothing other than whoever is awaking: whoever has barely emerged from sleep or appeared out of non-existence. It is a spirit perhaps still offended by shadows, deep folds, all that it must set aside and reject in order to become what it is: less breath than penetration, the penetration of a very fine point, whose acuteness, without undoing the impenetrability of matter—the world, bodies, our common presence—nonetheless gives matter its play, its light, not in the sense of what elucidates but in that of what opens up, in that of an orifice...

  5. 1 There Is No Sense of Sense: That Is Worthy of Adoration
    (pp. 10-21)

    Could one dare to affirm in all seriousness that adoration is what is necessary in the world today?

    One could not, and we shall not do so here, even if we feel a certain necessity to do so. We shall not do so partly because it would be grotesque to call for “adoration” in a world that perhaps lacks everything—justice, history, civility [cité], splendor, sense—except the idols, fetishes, gods, and celebrities that are proposed as objects of adoration. But this is not the only reason why we shall not simply affirm the necessity of adoration, however self-evident or...

  6. 2 In the Midst of the World
    (pp. 22-42)

    Why speak of Christianity?

    In truth, I’d like to speak of it as little as possible. I’d like to move toward an effacement of this name and of the whole corpus of references that follows it—a corpus that is already mostly effaced or has lost its vitality. But I do think it is important to follow the movement that this name has named: that of an exit from religion and of the expansion of the atheist world.

    This world, our world, that of what used to be called “Western” civilization, which can now be distinguished as such only by...

  7. 3 Mysteries and Virtues
    (pp. 43-64)

    The dis-enclosure of reason is the effect, or rather the remainder, of deconstructed Christianity, of religion’s having withdrawn from itself, pushed off from its observances and beliefs. Reason has moved away from the wish to give reasons [rendre raison]. Or rather, it knows that “giving a reason” goes beyond any reason that can be given. It knows that giving one’s reasons is an interminable process: one chases after the inexplicable and the unjustifiable, the fortuitous and the evil.

    These last two are linked, for in one way or another evil always consists in refusing contingency. Evil introduces a necessity. If...

  8. 4 Complements, Supplements, Fragments
    (pp. 65-98)

    A fixed syntagm makes it easy to speak of “beatific adoration,” meaning bleating devotion, irresponsible submission, even insidiously masochistic allegiance. The fixed nature of this expression indicates that one can understand the noun after the adjective as simply redundant: adoration would be in essence “beatific.” And it would be contentedly imbecilic in its blind submission. But we do not know how things stand with beatitude here, nor with submission.

    Beatitude, the state of “blessedness” [bienheureux] that is the sense of the word, is subject to the law stating that certain terms which should be understood as actions are understood as...

  9. Appendix: Freud—So to Speak
    (pp. 99-104)
  10. Notes
    (pp. 105-118)
  11. Back Matter
    (pp. 119-122)