Tuesday, March 8, 2005

Brown bunny - arma virumque cano 

There is only one political problem in our world today: the unification of mankind. The Internationale shall be the human race. That they may be one--ut unum sint. This is Christ's last prayer before the crucifixion, which was also the last prayer of the late Pope John; it must be set beside Freud's prayer in Civilization and Its Discontents. For indeed they will not be one until Freud and Pope John are found to speak in unison; or Freud and Marx and Pope John: the thing is to bring them together...

- Norman O. Brown, Love's Body 1966 (section on Unity)

It is the erotic sense of reality that discovers the inadequacy of fraternity, or brotherhood. It is not adequate as a form for the reunification of the human race; we must be either far more deeply unified, or not at all. The true form of unification--which can be found either in psychoanalysis or in Christianity, in Freud or Pope John, or Karl Marx--is: "we are all members of one body." The true form of the unification of the human race is not the brothers, Cain and Abel...

- - Norman O. Brown, Love's Body 1966 (section on Unity)

The kind never dies (Kantorowicz). "The temple of the Baganda kings, with their hereditary courts, keeping the past alive by perpetual reenactment." "For purposes of Roman Testamentary Jurisprudence each individual citizen was a Corporation sole," like the English king. Everything turns on the continuity of succession. The immortal corporation, the universitas juris of universal succession never dies: universitas non moritur. The legal fictions of the West correspond to the metaphysical fictions of the East. The immortal corporatin corresponds to the immortal soul which carries the succession to the Grand Lama of Tibet. In both cases there is the man's posthumous existence in the person of his heir, the elimination of the fact of death. The Western legal fiction, with its fetishism (personification) of the property, its reification of person, eliminates the facts more completely, by eliminating the moment of truth, the interregnum, the search for the new incarnation. Modern (Western) legalistic rationalism does not get away from magic: on the contrary, it makes the magical effects so permanent and so pervasive that we do not notice them at all. But only God can make an heir.

- - Norman O. Brown, Love's Body 1966 (section on Person)

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