Sunday, 19 April 2020

49.

Explorations



This blog is a three-part book in the process of being written, in the form of initial drafts of the sections, posted in the intended order, a project for which the overall name is Explorations. The book is a continuation from Hidden Valleys, Haunted by the Future (Zero Books - 2015), and also from On Vanishing Land, an audio-essay made by myself and Mark Fisher (released by Hyperdub/Flatlines on 26th July, 2019 - https://hyperdub.net).

Part One: Metamorphics   (1 - 18)

Part Two: The Second Sphere of Action   (19 - 30)

Part Three: Through the Forest, the River  (31 - 49) 











    The mountains are behind your life. They are fully inert, and are of no interest. They are festooned with cables and dotted with transmitters. 

    Some days you find your way up onto a roof of the city. Often the sky is grey or hazy, but sometimes it is clear. A few times you have seen dappled expanses of high, cirrostratus clouds.

   The city is hundreds of miles wide, constructed on the veins, a singular geological formation consisting of hyperconductive minerals. The veins are used as the primary computation substrate for the city, and they are also mined, and the hyperconductive minerals are placed within para-systems and devices which need to be close to the veins, because they generate a quantum field which maintains the minerals in a hyperconductive state.

   The mountains run alongside the city, to the south. To the north, between thirty and fifty miles away, is the ocean. In the last two miles before the ocean are the agricultural terrains - those which are on the ground, as opposed to being spread out across roof spaces.

   The city consists of many cities, all interfused through each other. The city of science, the city of religion, the city of design, the city of government, the city of mathematics, the city of simulation, the city of social sciences, the city of psychoanalysis. Each of these cities is an intricate network of buildings and walkways. You could walk for weeks and never leave the city of science, and the whole time someone could have been walking within a mile of you within the city of religion.

  Families tend to live in flats which look out into tall cylindrical wells a few hundred yards across. If you are wealthy the well is open to the sky, if not the well is subterranean.

   In its deepest subterranean areas the city is a place of desperate poverty. And in most of the higher regions it is a place of grinding subordination to processes of work, where the inhabitants have enough money for food and other necessities, but have very little time to do anything with a tiny surplus of money. 

   There is a further sub-division of the city: it is divided into thirty seven guild-nations. The city of government is divided into thirty seven segments, each of which corresponds to one of the guild-nations, and the city of religion is divided into eight zones, with each of the guild-nations being affiliated to one of these zones. Diplomacy buffer-zones exist between the segments within the cities of religion and government. 

  There are always wars taking place between the guild-nations, with warfare occuring in deep-level tunnel systems, but sometimes breaking out into the factory and residential areas. The view taken by the city of science is that the processing power of the veins will eventually remove wars, poverty and disease, and the view taken by the guild-nations is that the solution will be that in the end only a single guild-nation and religion can exist. The implant-saturated troops for these wars tend to come from the poorest, most subterranean zones, and the espionage operatives, who have more sophisticated implants, tend to come from city levels which are further up. Both the troops and the operatives provide material for the productions of the city of simulation.

   The city is a world of networks of entertainment, where a very large proportion of walls are screens. The cities of design and simulation produce a wide range of forms of entertainment. These become particularly important when there are restrictions on movement because of warfare, or because of an outbreak of disease.



   One day you have gone up onto a roof. You have found an old-style book called "The Planet, and How to Be a Body." You look to the south, at the mountains, and have a moment where you see the sky above them as a sublime brightness. 

   The first part of the book consists of information about the terrains and formations of the fully inert.



   It is several weeks later, and you are near the top of a pass over the mountains. As ever, exposed areas of soil are mostly threaded with the micro-cables of the city. At the top of the pass you feel for a moment you are seeing a wall of bright translucence stretching into the sky and passing out of sight to east and west. You walk over the point where the micro-cables come to an end, and for a moment everything is a cloudy luminosity which is suffused with nacreous colour, an eerie expanse of tiny filaments of violet, green, and pink light - and then you can see other filaments, amber, blue, red, yellow. 

    And then it is all gone. And you are looking out toward an immense system of forested valleys which becomes an area of green hills. On one of the hills there is a cluster of buildings which seems likely to be what your book calls 'a town'. On the horizon there are more mountains. And close to the area of buildings there are spaces of reflected light which must be a river. You remember a phrase from the book "The fully inert is not inert, but although it is immensely beautiful it is in many ways more dangerous than the city." You re-tie your bootlaces. Then you start to walk down the slope.






     


*

 
   


   

   This final phase of the conclusion will concentrate initially on persistences and gaps.


    At the outset, a persistence consists of following the feeling of being ‘onto’ something, even if it is out of focus, and you don’t yet know how to express what is involved, and even if there is a lack of official ‘kudos’ about the areas by which you are inspired. (it is always a process of testing everything, at a pragmatic level, and at a philosophical level – something which is intrinsic to the persistence). When it becomes abundantly clear that it works, that it is a delight and an illumination – even if it is not yet fully in focus, and even if it brings no kudos – then it must become an act of intent, it must be intended at the deepest level. At this point it becomes a persistence in a full sense.

    A gap is a break in the flow of customary existence which involves a process of waking the faculties. The ‘structure’ of a gap can in itself be very ordinary, but under these circumstances it is what takes place within the ‘channel’ which entails that a gap has been opened up. Stated differently, the creation of a gap is the discovery and use of an obscured potential, or is the putting-into-effect – in a sustained way – of a potential of which there had been some awareness, but with no attempt at its realisation.


     When, in July of 2005, I started to live without a home (while working in a full time job), I was opening up a gap.  But although in this case even the structure was something of a departure, there still needed to be something more in terms of waking the faculties for this to be more than a gap in a minimal sense. To give a ‘surface’ account of the trajectory of what took place will help in terms of getting to what is in question (although in the end it will only be the least important part of the process).

    In August of 2008 my name was back on a rental contract. In the three years to this date I had spent around 18 months living in the woodlands of London (packing up every morning, and going both to different places, and to different parts of the areas of woodland which were best for travelling to and from work); I had had two long holidays in Mongolia (7 weeks) and a 3 month holiday in Argentina, during most of which I was in Patagonia (these trips were made possible by saving on rent, bills etc.); I had been to the Asturias mountains / northern Spain for three weeks in the summer of 2005, and, separately, I had been twice to Madrid; I had been to two Glade festivals where my living in a tent was a continuation of what was I was doing the rest of the time; I had spent a total of two months house-sitting / cat-sitting for three different members of staff at my college; and at three different shared houses rented by friends I had been a temporary tenant while someone was away, with these three stays totalling around a year.

    I experienced this phase of my life as an extraordinary joy. But it is not enough to say this. What is decisive, however, is a combination of these three aspects: the first is that during this phase I was recurrently attempting to become unbroken perception, and by more than one means to reach a ‘heightened’ or ‘trance’ state where the ordinary-reality flow of verbal thought was suspended; the second is that I embarked at this time on a very sustained process – for the first time in my life – of writing stories, commencing with the arrival of the idea which became The Corridor, in northern Spain in 2005; the third was that I was working on ‘deterritorialising’ my voice by learning overtone singing.

    This was therefore a gap. And it was one which shows the way in which a gap can be a discovery or mobilisation of a potential, where the potential is itself interesting and important (someone can discover that they can transform their holidays into gaps, and this could be momentous to the highest degree, but the structure of the gap - phases of ‘annual leave’ from paid work – is not in itself interesting). However – the problem with concentrating on this form of gap is that it has a tendency to emphasise the extensive aspect of the ‘nomadism’ involved, even when there is the account of the movement in intensity which was taking place.

   And in this context there is a way in which the process of giving the account of the overall movements of intensity is inadequate to the point of being misleading.  The Corridor was not written during this gap, and nor did I start writing it at the point where I was in a flat again, in the year after August 2008, but instead another kind of gap was involved, a superficially much less interesting form of gap - one which, in fact, has been involved in almost all of my work since 2009. And, separately, what was flowing through the channel of those three years in terms of persistences has barely been detailed at all.
   
   
    A persistence is straightforwardly a formation of intent, and in some cases a persistence is a creation of fully effectuated virtual-real worlds, in a way which is important in relation to the issue of it being harder to follow the escape-path of Exteriority while living in a city.  Transforming Deleuze and Guattari’s guide-line into a question, you can ask ‘how do you live as a nomad in the city?’ (and the answer toward which we are moving is not about living in a tent in the woodlands of London, but is another, and much more important answer).


    It is now – therefore - necessary to give a more detailed account of persistences: one which gives examples, using the same method that has been used with gaps.



    In the course of the decade of the 1990s several persistences went into effect in my life.

   The first of these was a concentration of attention on the expanses of the planet beyond the urban (and in a way where towns, as opposed to cities, were sources of interest because of their greater degree of proximity to the non-urban). The appearance in my life of a composite of terrains consisting of Leamington and Harbury Lake (and the areas around these two places) is one of the key developments in relation to the arrival of this persistence, and starting to travel to semi-wilderness forest and mountain areas (in Greece and Romania) was the other main 'component of passage.' 

   The second was a persistence consisting of giving sustained attention to a composite of texts by Deleuze/Guattari, Deleuze and Castaneda, where the connecting point was A Thousand Plateaus, with its large number of references to Castaneda's work. This serves to illustrate the point about exploring the areas in question, in that the process of attention involved both the testing of pragmatic systems and the exploration and validation of philosophical views.

    The third was a persistence - or perhaps it would better to call it a proto-persistence - in the form of engaging with areas of the world in a process of writing stories: and in particular what was involved in this was an exploratory impression that I might be able to write a fantasy/science fiction novel as a philosopher. The idea was about giving a wide-level and depth-level account of the world in the form of a story of this kind. It was through getting the idea of "Ktarizon: Deep Water," at Harbury Lake, in the summer of 1999, that the persistence began to cross its first main threshold, but even then it would be several years before a sustained process of exploration began.


     

     This account carries the danger of there being too much emphasis on texts. However, it is important to see that a crucial part of the horizon of these three persistences was a pragmatics of waking the faculties and of becoming-active, where, eventually, this process would be effectuated, leaving the texts largely behind, as no longer of central importance. An intent-formation of waking the faculties is always singular, and, once effectuated, the process of moving forward with it (as it) is always less-and-less to do with texts. (Outsights are the functioning of a modality of perception-of-the-world, instead of them being specifically tied to writing, so over time there is a greater degree of arrival of outsights through the functioning of this modality (lucidity), as opposed to their arrival through the mediation of language).

    Having made this last point makes it easier to give an account of a time-limited or time-constrained persistence that began during the same phase of my life. The use of hallucinogenic and trance-inducing substances was a first-stage persistence which in many ways was a powerful part of the process of forward-movement, but which, having been explored, could not cross the threshold of becoming a persistence in the full sense: on the contrary, having failed the exploratory process of validation, it was simply dropped from my life in a genuinely visceral shift (the impression I have is that what I had isolated which was not quite right about it came inchoately into the foreground of my awareness, and that this brought about the change). However, this element of my life had been, at depth, a domain of movements-forward in relation to perception, dreaming and lucidity, and the point where the shift occurred was not an abandonment of this domain, but was a continuation, in that the knowledge and the strategies for exploration simply became elements of the wider pragmatics of waking the faculties.




    *


   It is now a question of giving an account of gaps and persistences in relation to a before, a during, and an afterwards - although it will be the beginning of the afterwards which will turn out to be the most important starting-point.

   There was a phase from November of 2003 to July of 2005 during which the main gap consisted of Mark Fisher and myself meeting up to work on londonunderlondon, but often (especially in the first half of this phase) watching sci-fi/horror TV series (and films), in a way where sometimes what we watched was straightforwardly research for the project, but where recurrently we followed the 'lines' of what we felt needed to be watched, irrespective of the audio work. This was a gap in that both Mark and myself saw that the non-realist works we were watching were windows giving views of aspects of the world, no matter how flawed or opaque these windows might sometimes be; secondly it was a gap in that, as it went on, this process increasingly had alongside it our attempt to use the faculties of lucidity and dreaming (which had found expression in the film and TV) to produce a view of our own, in the form of londonunderlondon

    Some gaps are deceptively simple, and have almost no 'structure' along the lines of an obscured or un-used potential. All that happened was that every two or three weeks I would go over to Mark's flat in Bromley, and then in the final six months Mark became a second tenant in a flat I had been renting on my own, in Leyton, and this gave us the circumstances for the final, work-intensive process of sequencing and editing a 90 minute piece. But it is important to notice that through all the phases of this trajectory we needed to do our work uninterrupted, in that the flats involved were, in effect, production studios: so the condition of what took place was a set of decisions that allowed flats to be studios (both of us were on low incomes, so these decisions meant available money was very limited).


     (In the final year the persistence of making londonunderlondon went into full effect, and continued in the form of the idea of making another work. A few hours after giving the completed work to Resonance FM Mark and I had a conversation which we felt could be the basis of a second audio-essay).

   


     But it can be asked at this point - what about the persistence of writing stories? At the start of this phase it was three years since I had written "Ktarizon: Deep Water" (see section 18). During the intervening years of teaching A level philosophy I had worked on several story ideas, but hadn't come close to arriving at the idea of a complete story, let alone to writing one down (it seems that if you have been trained in philosophy it is not easy to start writing stories). And, in fact, the changes which took place during the phase in question were minimal. I wrote one seven page piece ("The River"), and I wrote the story which is the concluding part of londonunderlondon (a story for voices, but where the voices are fictional interviews). It was encouraging that this story was an element of a work which had been broadcast, but at the point when it went on air (April 2005) it was more than a year since doing the writing, and at this time I did not have a new project in relation to fiction.


  After finishing londonunderlondon I still had a week left of the spring holiday. I arranged to visit friends in Brighton, at the weekend, and I decided I would walk to Brighton, walking out of London at the beginning, starting from Leyton. This was a very inspiring walk, across the 'north downs' hills, the weald, and the south downs (I camped for two nights, and arrived at around 4pm on the third day). 

    When I started work again I was confronted with a return to the grind of ordinary existence, and in the weeks that followed there was a choice I had to make in terms of where to live. Mark's job was at Orpington College in Kent, and he wanted to return to somewhere in southeast London. And I had begun to feel that I wanted to step back from having a house, and get a view from another perspective.


   * 


   Madrid airport, early January of 2008. I am waiting for a flight to Buenos Aires. In many ways it feels as if an immense storm has swept across my life, but in a way where most of what is involved in this has no connection to the fact that I have been without a fixed address for two and a half years (and, in any case, for the last three months I have been a stand-in tenant in a shared house in Herne Hill, renting the room of a friend who is in Frankfurt).

   I am not giving any thought to this, but a main aspect of the depth-level account of the time since mid-2005 is that writing stories has become a much more central and compelling aspect of my life. Even though things are not really coming together, and I have only written short pieces, and fragments, there a feeling of 'something going on.' For one thing there is a very large-scale fictional world involved - a world which suggests a mythos rather than a single story. Two and a half weeks after my tenancy ended at the Leyton flat I had flown to Oviedo in northern Spain, and two weeks later the idea which became The Corridor arrived.

    It is also the case that I have shifted, without it a being a deliberate strategy, toward primarily reading fiction, and - in particular - fiction which has a sci-fi, fantasy or 'anomalous' aspect. In my bag is a book of stories by Julio Cortazar, but in the previous years I have read very widely - with the novels of Le Guin and Dunsany being the works which have impressed me most. However, none of this is in my mind at this point. 

   I am in love with a woman who is from Argentina. And I am about to spend nearly three months in the mountainous, forested northwest of Patagonia. I am not going to meet Maysa while I am there (I have just said goodbye to her at Heathrow), but the trip would not have happened without her, and because the area of Patagonia is one which Maysa knows, the trip is very much connected to her.

    I am aware that many of the people around me are from Argentina. And I arrive at the decision that I will intend that they are my people (that I am one of them), not in the sense of being my own, 'natal' people, but in the sense of them being another people (this for immigrants to other countries is, in one way or another, something which takes place as part of the process of naturalising as an immigrant). This was about a people of a terrain, as opposed to a state or territory - an affection for whatever is inspired about my own 'people' (the people of Britain, but also the people of New Zealand) had a source all along in a wider, non-territorial potential, and the flame of this affection leapt across. As if this was a natural, healthy act of intent, one which existed in itself, and simultaneously was about a breaking free from any residual nonsense on the part of the reactive oneiro-affective world of territory.

    


    This twelve weeks was also a gap. I had paid for the flights in October, and then had gone to my line manager and told him what I had done, saying that this would have to be seen as notification of leaving my job, but that I would be exceptionally happy to return to it at the start of April. To my surprise my manager told me that, on a discretionary basis, there was a system in place at the college which meant that non-teaching staff could get up to three months sabbatical leave, and that he himself had received three months of leave two years previously, in order to travel around Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. I was struck by the serendipity - that is, I was struck not so much by the way in which the lengths of time coincided as by the fact that no-one had told me about this system, and I had only found out about it because, in effect, I had put in a request. 

    
    I felt that El Bolson was an extraordinary town. It seemed that generations of environmentalists and radicals had settled there, and had been involved in bringing together a place which was substantially better than the average. There was the absence of high-rise hotels, the three-times-a-week craft market, the camping places for artisans from all around South America, the fact that, partly because of the forested mountains around it, in many places in the centre of the town your eye could go from tree to tree, without a gap, around a complete circle. (this is not to say that logging is not a problem there: at one point I spoke to a man whose family ran a logging firm, for which he worked, and he expressed his concern about the forests).

    At one point I walked north for a day, and then the next morning I hitched a lift to Lago Mascardi, around eighty miles north of where the car journey had started. The morning after this I walked for around thirty miles without stopping, initially alongside the lake, and then through a wide mountain valley leading to the volcanic mountain El Tronador. I set out during this walk to become sustained perception, and in the final ten miles the result of this long-duration attempt, together with the exertion of the walk, led to a series of semi-trance experiences, the first of which grew out of a process of calling to mind what I knew about Argentina over the previous seventy years, where this process became a reverie that was both about the quiet radicalism of El Bolson and the modernism of the tales of Julio Cortazar. And in the late afternoon sunlight I arrived at an awareness that from the outset Cortazar's work (in particular tales such as House Taken Over) had been a degree zero of unfettered modernism. I could the direction clearly, the point where the lenses really start to show you what needs to be seen, and where immanence metaphysics becomes the only modality for talking about them, as opposed, for instance to aesthetics. (three years later I would take up this idea of unfettered modernism in writing the essay for On Vanishing Land).


    Another walk took place because I met an old man in the street in El Bolson (he was maybe eighty) who told me about a narrow valley that stretched for miles into the main range of the mountains, saying I should visit this valley.

    The entrance to the valley was blocked by a long, precipitous gorge, which meant you had to walk up onto the mountain, and then drop down after three miles: the valley extended for another fifteen miles beyond this, and was an idyllic pathless place. At the head of it there was a steep slope of big trees, the wall of forest rising up for hundreds of feet, with the bare rock and glaciars of the mountain above it. This view gave me a feeling of the sublime which was almost like receiving a blow - it was beautiful but it had a quality of too-muchness that is on the edge of what can be expressed. With some difficulty I crossed the stream (it was not possible to continue on the side on which I had been walking) and I continued for another few hundred yards. But the memory stayed with me of having nearly slipped, in jumping from one rock to another, and I became aware of how difficult the return journey would be with a broken ankle. There was a serene, sunlit intensity about the towering wall of trees that in some way left me feeling I needed to be completely on my axis if I was to go there. I decided I would come back another time, when I was in a more focused state.

    The first two miles of the return journey were immensely harder than they had been on the way up. I could not find the route I had taken, and the thick, spiny bushes were sometimes impenetrable, so that I had to double back.

    But in the course of that afternoon and evening something unexpected happened. Over the previous six months I had been thinking about the questions concerning the future which came from the relationship with Maysa, questions about the nature of the re-forming of our lives - where will we go? where will we live? what will we do? And now I found myself thinking about the house where Maysa was living (a house in which I have now been living with her for ten years) and I was struck by something heartening about it that involved the nature of the house, together with its location and its orientation toward the light. I was aware of the strangeness of this reverie in the middle of a mountain wilderness, but there was a brightness about the thought of the house that did not seem in any way out of place in my surroundings.


*


   It is September of 2009. Since June I have been living, with Maysa, in the house that had come to my mind in the mountain valley in Patagonia. For most of the previous year I had been renting a flat, and during this time I had written two 'Corridor' stories, which I felt were in some ways like sketches. Maysa and I have just come back from two weeks in Cornwall,  and the City Lit term has started. I feel the need to find a way of working every day, despite the start-of-term college work, and I am thinking that I will write a story that will be part of a collection of stories, perhaps consisting of three novella-length works. 

   I start to get up early in the morning to work, at around 5 or 5.30 (because my shift starts at 11am, a relatively long session of work is possible). Over the next weeks I have a feeling that I am watching something happen, a distinctive feeling of an event, an emergence. At the beginning there is light when I get up, and I am trying to hold onto the feeling of being in Cornwall, and weeks later it is dark, but there is a bright feeling of being on holiday that is still there, though it has a different source.

    I had never worked in the morning before, apart from on rare occasions. But in fact I am made for it: I am someone who snaps awake, and then gets a rush of energy in the first five or ten minutes. The potential was there, largely untouched.

    An idea comes to me for a Corridor story. This idea has kept all of the main ideas, but has new characters and new elements in comparison with "Disappearance" (Section 42) and the stories which I had just written. It feels as if it has much more depth and atmosphere, and it has more of a story. Initially it is the length of a novella, but very soon it expands into a story five times this length. I am swept away into envisaging its events, and whether I am writing or envisaging there is a sunlit affect - a joy; a brightness; a longing - which recurrently suffuses me, arriving through the thought of the forests of the Corridor, and to an even greater extent through the thought of the Elsewhere.

   

    The gap is the channel through which the writing of The Corridor primarily flows (and the same is true of the writing for On Vanishing Land). In the day at work I am still able to write emails to friends during quiet phases (I don't realise how fortunate I am - I am working on an enquiries desk where a lot of the time there is no-one coming to the desk). In these emails I am aware that there is more philosophy and social theory than previously. The day starts with a gap, and then continues with the micro-channels of another kind of gap (my impression is that my processes of writing philosophy were inspired by what was taking place in the start-of-day gap, rather than them being displaced in some way - I had not been doing much philosophical work at the start of this phase).


*

    
    Nomadism in intensity is no less real as a result of the journey being in intensity. Paths are found which turn out not to be going in the right direction; paths can go in the right direction for a long time, and then come to an end, so that another path needs to be found. And writing a story is recurrently far more than it seems to be. In writing The Corridor I had a faint but slowly intensifying impression that living the story was taking me toward what I now call the second sphere of action, and that the story's parallel world was a lens which gave a view toward this sphere. The sunlit, planetary affect kept taking me to a faint awareness of this other sphere as the domain in which I was to some extent acting: the affect was sublime in a serene, very charged modality. And then sometimes there was another affect - a feeling of the eerie. This second affect, however, was not an indication I was going in the wrong direction: in fact its presence in a secondary, over-my-shoulder way was one more indication that the path was going where I needed it to go.

    (Part of the process of exploration/pragmatics is finding additional zones that can go alongside what is already taking place, zones which, with certain kinds of movement forward (involving processes of production of works), could replace a movement that will soon come to an end. 

     In some cases (ones not involving production of works) there can be no way in which a central zone is coming to an end, and it can be evident that the additional zones are not at the same level of intensity: they have a validity in themselves, and they are part of a process of exploring, understanding and validating the central zone. And they can turn out not to be going in the direction in which you need to travel. This happened for me with the works of William Burroughs and J.G.Ballard: despite there being many aspects of these bodies of work which are valuable, their subtending modalities, in very different ways, were not going toward transcendental south, and, although I was an ongoing beneficiary of certain outsights, I nonetheless simply dropped them as first-phase persistences).


      By the the summer of 2011 I had two ideas for novels which it seemed were stories I would eventually write, after finishing The Corridor. They were large-scale, intense stories, which in both cases had reached the point where there was a lot of detail, and where there was a plot dynamic which had been brought into focus. They appeared, without me giving much thought to this, to be stories of an approximately similar kind to The Corridor, although neither of them was connected in any way to the world of this story. But as the months went by the ideas did not develop any further: and I began to get a faint impression that there was something not quite right about the stories. At one point, before this impression had started to appear, I wrote an email to a friend where I gave a paragraph synopsis of each of the stories, and did the same with three other ideas which had less detail (the other three were, in fact, similiar to The Corridor in terms of their affect, though they were just sketches of worlds, without there being anything more than a suggestion of a story). At the end of the email I said that the stories were like eyes which were trying to open - the thought involved was that they were eyes for looking at the world. But as I wrote this phrase, looking at the paragraphs, I had an odd, slightly perturbing impression that the stories were external eyes - eyes which had opened and were looking back at me. 

    There was in fact a further virtual project at this time. I was planning to write a book called "Eerie Libidinography" which would be based on a series of eleven or twelve texts/works of very different kinds ("The Story of the Telescope and the Abyss," Patti Smith's Horses, A Thousand Plateaus, Picnic at Hanging Rock, Operators and ThingsBlack Moon, The Left Hand of Darkness, Being-in-Dreaming, The Hounds of Love/The Ninth Wave etc.). I never straightforwardly rejected this project during the time being described, but increasingly I was left with two concerns: the first was that I was not drawn to writing a work where the zone of consistency was a series of texts, as opposed to zones or aspects of the world; and the other was that I began to feel that the fact the libidinal-and-the-eerie was not the strongest intensity which ran through the works was something which outweighed the fact that it would be an interesting approach to them. 

    And in relation to the two ideas for novels I became aware over time that in quite a subtle way a thread of the eerie which ran through them involved too much of the dark-libidinal, or semi-gothic (the indeterminate quality of the eerie resolved itself into a view with two very different aspects, one of which was the dark libidinal, and the other of which was a minimal (in context) thread of 'love and lucidity') and that the stories did not, for instance, have a compensating - and in fact necessarily predominating - dimension along the lines of the planetary sublime and the Elsewhere in The Corridor.

    I did not work these things out at the time, in that what happened was that I was simply swept in another direction. I had two or three conversations with a friend at City Lit - a woman who came from Kirkbymoorside - about the North York Moors, and a conversation with Mark about the year 1978. And in thinking about my City Lit friend's love for the North York Moors, and my own love for them, placing myself in the world of my experiences as a fifteen year old in 1978, the idea of a completely diifferent project appeared, one which would start from places, not from texts, and one which would have an overarching narrative aspect, but which would not be fiction (the work would include two pieces of fiction, totalling about two pages). I finished the initial draft of The Corridor in April of 2012, and embarked on editing it, a very different kind of process, the first phase of which would take a year. And at the end of this year of editing I started writing Hidden Valleys.

     It is not that I feel that in any way I needed to leave fiction behind (apart perhaps from in a temporary sense, relating to the fact that while working full-time it can be hard to be developing along a lot of different lines at once). And, separately, although the question of finding zones of consistency other than texts is a vital one, this is not the primary issue in this context. The crucial point is that dark-libidinal threads had started to appear in my new ideas for stories in ways which did not leave these threads as sufficiently minimal within the stories (the affect is of a disguised two dimensional, and dark-libidinal quality). And what happened, at depth, is that I was swept toward a continuation, but by new means. The 'sideways' of the Corridor, and the wall of white light of the Elsewhere became the sideways Future of Hidden Valleys (sideways to the line of chronos), where the view is toward the next valley of the Future - of existence at a higher level of intensity. These are of course the same, it's just that in Hidden Valleys I had left behind the modality of fiction, and in writing about the Future seen from 1978, I was making the 'aeonic' point that the Future in this sense is the transcendental-empirical, and was the same Future three thousand years earlier, and was the same Future at the time of writing the book. And the precise nature of the way in which I was swept away is integral to the point which has just been made. Ryedale and The North York Moors were fundamental but so was the brightness of seeing them from the point of view of a woman who came from the area. The brightness of all of the aspects of this experience had enough power to pull me away from the influence of the Deep Hotel. (I would venture one further idea, one which is an extrapolation from what took place, and relates to the strength of women, and the predictability of men who love women: this is that for a man who loves women a single woman can have a power which is far greater than that of the Deep Hotel - the adjacency). The culmination of the account of what took place is this: I had been turned back toward the second sphere of action, the next valley of existence. 


    We have arrived at the transcendental-empirical view. Behind, the interestablishment. To one side, but back over your shoulder, the adjacency. Ahead, the second sphere of action.


    This is the same view whether you are looking from Coventry, or El Bolson, or Leamington, or London, or from a summit of the Sayan mountains. To provide more detail, we are standing at the vicinity, looking at the escape-path, and the first section of the escape-path is "the initial." And a main aspect of the description of the initial - and of whatever can be seen of the path further on - is that it is the waking of the faculties. A primary aim of this conclusion - and of the whole of Explorations - is to give an account of a process of waking the faculties in order to give a clearer view of the escape-path.


     It can be asked, what about the role of the planetary, if it is always the same view, whether you are living in a house surrounded by mountains, or a flat in the centre of a city? The answer is that it is an awareness of the planetary (as opposed to the human world, or the human world fringed a little with the rest of the planet) which is primary in relation to what helps you move forward, and is that even if the awareness is from within a city, it is likely to turn out that this awareness is also connected to actual visits to non-urban spaces, or that the awareness in fact has the form of a virtual-real world which, again, is based on actual encounters with wilderness, countryside and scurfland terrains. It can be seen that an answer is being given to the question of how to keep moving toward transcendental south while living in a city (this is the same question as that of how to live in a city as a nomad-in-intensity - the nomad arrives at each horizon, and chooses the best direction). And this answer includes the place-to-live - the 'base' - as a new aspect: even in London a place-to-live which has the right attributes (form, location, orientation etc.) is somewhere which can be a base in this sense. The house on which my attention became focused (a rented property) in the uninhabited valley in Patagonia was a part of what could work for Forward movement - but very much only a part. Once I was there what was involved was immensely more than the base: there was my relationship with the woman with whom I was sharing the house, and then there was what I needed to open up - the gap. And lastly there were the persistences which have been outlined, which were what went into effect within the gap. And what this last point entails is that what was necessary was to maintain a view toward the planetary, and - inseparably - to maintain a view toward the transcendental-empirical which was primarily focused on the second sphere of action, the Future, the Elsewhere.


    The transcendental-empirical view was in part arrived at through attention being given to two specific areas: an area of Warwickshire and the West Midlands that can be designated as Harbury/Leamington/Coventry, and an area of North Yorkshire that can be designated as Malton/Helmsley. But in leaving these places behind (as crucial lenses) the view has become more planetary rather than less: in the second sphere of action the planet is intrinsically more in the foreground than in the first sphere of action. And to move forward in this sphere is to follow the path of intensification, which is the waking of the faculties, but which, stated another way, is the application of the principle of Exteriority, a principle which more than anything else involves a primacy of awareness of the planet.

    (There are three things that can be said at this point about the path of "waking the faculties." The first is that its empirical details are different from one person to another. The second is that you can only have a depth-level understanding of it by travelling along it yourself. And the third is that I have done what I can to exemplify it, in summarised form in this section, and, in more detail, in the whole of Explorations, with its starting point in 1993).



    In relation to the persistences which have been described, a point which needs to be made is that the persistence of working on a composite of A Thousand Plateaus and the books of Castaneda seamlessly extended itself, around 2007, to include the books of Florinda Donner and Taisha Abelar. This inclusion was experienced as an upward threshold-crossing. 

    A second point is that the shift from writing fiction to writing Hidden Valleys was not a change which caused me to stop writing stories. There was a small number of stories which eventually I realised I did not want to write, and - separately - what happened illustrates the way in which the central process of waking faculties can sweep, like a flame along a fuse, from one faculty to another, but, although the central process had moved, while I was writing Hidden Valleys I wrote several stories, such as "The far glade" (Section 7); and overall the process of writing and planning stories has not stopped at any stage in the years since finishing The Corridor.

     Lastly, the persistence in relation to Argentina may have begun in Madrid airport, but it was immeasurably deepened by my visit to the northwest of Patagonia. I fell in love with the area around El Bolson to an extent which left me feeling humbled and astonished. And this persistence, having deepened itself so early (through Patagonia, but also through two weeks in Buenos Aires) has only continued to intensify itself. In fact what has taken place feels extremely over-determined, as if I was always going to be swept away: in relation to music I have come to feel extremely close to the hauntingly intense and charged story of Charly Garcia, Spinetta, Rosario Blefari, Gustavo Cerati and Juana Molina, and of the bodies of work I have encountered recently in music none seem to me to be as undemonstratively powerful - and downright beautiful -  as the songs of Femina from "Mi Eje" in 2012 to their songs in 2017. Over the last decade I have also enjoyed more films from Argentina in comparison with films from the UK and the USA put together, and one of the writers who has really impressed me during this decade is Samanta Schweblin. This persistence is partly very diffuse, in that over time different elements could come to the forefront, and others might go into the background, but it is nonetheless a persistence, and it is not going to go away, held in place by two hundred miles of the Andes to the north and south of El Bolson, and by those figures who remain in its foreground, by Cortazar, by Garcia, by Blefari. 


   Who is here, at the vicinity? Everyone, insofar as they have an openness, and a brightness, and an undogmatic love for the world. It is trans-national, trans-state/tribal - the engineer from China is alongside the song-writer from Argentina; the Yanomami tribeswoman is alongside the office worker from New York. The human world as a formation which is struggling to move Forward consists of the influence of the vicinity together with the influence of those who are on the escape-path. 

    The transcendental-empirical view includes all of the elements of the transcendental-empirical that were delineated in Section 34. The main additional aspects in this context are, firstly, the ongoing disaster, and, secondly, the pervasive functioning of the control mind, with its dogmatic systems of reason-and-revelation and of ventures-and-liasons, and its affect-system of reactive moods. Both of these aspects relate to the interestablishment, simultaneously at the micrological level of individual lives and at the macrological level of social formations. The vicinity and those on the escape-path consist together of what is straightforwardly not the interestablishment, the interiority.

    And the key point is that it is always possible to set out along the escape-path. The social field around you may be heightened, or may be in a low phase, but this is irrelevant in every way in relation to your capacity to depart toward the Future.



    There is no doubt that it is necessary to start from a becoming-active which involves the whole body, and from the faculty of perception. And there is also no doubt that the faculty to which, after perception, the highest degree of attention should be given at the outset is the faculty of dreaming.

    A question could be asked at this stage about whether there should have been more emphasis, in the three books of Explorations, on becoming-active and the faculty of perception, and in particular about whether more attention should have been given to the faculty of perception.

   A first response to this is that the indications in relation to perception, and intrinsically related issues such as breathing, is that the singular nature of each process of departure is exceptionally important, meaning that finding a way out onto the escape-path is very different for each individual, so that giving generic guidelines is particularly difficult. A second point is that a becoming-active which involves the whole body is a close counterpart of waking perception. A lot has been done, across the three books, to show aspects of one particular trajectory of becoming-active, whatever have been the absences and weaknesses of this trajectory.

   Furthermore, along with descriptions of techniques of becoming perception - of stopping internal verbalising, and entering into sustained becoming with the world - there has also been a very sustained focus on the planetary side of the definitive terrain, where this has always been tied closely with the interelationship between the planet around us and the senses. The idea of the spheroambient world relates to perception, and the focus on the planet has returned, again and again, to the idea of a human individual being a kind of mobile, body-shaped eye, whose primary zone of encounter is the planet (with the stars and other astronomical formations as alongside, but secondary, and the sun as primary in a sense that relates to energy).

    However, if the balance has not been quite right, it can only be said that my background has made me very aware of the importance of the issue of dreamings. It is never easy to assess the emphasis involved: for instance in The Corridor the major threshold-crossings take place through perception. But if the emphasis in the end is wrong I can only hope that this weakness is associated with a strength in relation to the account and exemplification of dreamings. 


    There is a threshold-crossing in the domain of dreamings: beyond this point dreamings provide outsights: they are lenses which give views toward the transcendental-empirical. The veridical term in relation to these narratives is validity: their validity is demonstrated through them being effective maps and diagrams, and initial processes of an aspect of the world  'coming into focus' while effectuating the dreamings are an element of the validity, but only the effectiveness in using the map or diagram retroactively establishes these processes as an aspect of the validity, as opposed to them being a contingency through superimposition of another view, or as opposed to them being some complex of understanding and confusion.

    The most powerful dreamings use both narrative and abstractions which are expressions of lucidity, abstractions in the form of concepts. The texts which function in this way have the greatest range and depth, because their outsights are the expressions of two different modalities. The validity of the works of Donner, Abelar and Castaneda is alongside the validity of The Waves, of Hamlet, of Fanny and Alexander, of Picnic at Hanging Rock: but it is at a higher level because of it involving an exceptionally focused view of the transcendental-empirical, and specifically of the two most crucial aspects of the transcendental-empirical - the second sphere of action, and the escape-path.

     Assuming there are no blocking prejudices in terms of dogmas of kudos, standing or 'rightness' (epistemological or moral), in encountering these works there is a feeling of expansiveness, of brightness - a 'breath of fresh air' feeling of new perspectives, and an absence of the dogma-feeling of gravity, whether this is gravity in a religious, scientifist-reductonist, or political form. This feeling is indicative - it shows that this is a path worth exploring. Feeling in this sense is an inchoate perception, and it guides, but, for the individual being guided it does not in any way establish validity in relation to the dreaming. Speaking in general, the appearance of such a feeling could be partly arriving from idiosyncratic additional zones-of-encounter being included within the process of effectuating the dreaming. 

    The question of 'who is it who is dreaming?' is in every way a crucial one. And it becomes particularly insistent in relation to dreams in sleep, opening up the idea of a planetary unconscious which, generally speaking, breaks through only very rarely in terms of being the primary force in the creation of dreams (as if a force of lucidity and conciseness occasionally succeeds in breaking through the circle of a siege). This line of thought opens up a fundamental differentiation in the domain of dreams in sleep: there are dreams which consist of subjectified worlds of urgencies and interiorities (what can be called interestablishment dreams), and then there are dreams with a bright, poised expansiveness, consisting not of the stress or anguish of an urgency, but of the serene delight of an exploration. Again and again these dreams will consist of movement - and viewed events - within outdoor spaces, but it is the feeling of joyful exploration that at the outset is vital in terms of deciding to hold onto the dream, as opposed to discarding it as more subjectified detritus from the interestablishment. (It can be seen that the faculty of dreaming leads to the faculty of feeling). 

    Section 46 delineated a sequence of exploration-dreams, dreams in sleep which have to be seen - however else they can be seen - as expressions of a force which in some way produces outsights, views toward the outside of ordinary reality. These dreamings insisted, across three and a half decades, toward a view which consisted pre-eminently of the spaces beyond cities, a threshold-crossing (consisting of a metamorphosis), forests and mountains, the sky, the other animal beings beyond the human species, and the centrality of women. 

    Once more, we have arrived at the transcendental-empirical: and this time with an exceptionally clear view toward the second sphere of action. And the only aspect of what is being seen which needs clarification is the metamorphosis. On the basis of the dream recounted in Section 24 this metamorphosis appears as the horizon of the second sphere of action, a potential which, before arriving at the horizon, can nonetheless be experienced partially and fugitively as the beyond of the second sphere, a beyond whose transition-point can sometimes be seen as a wall of white light, or a wall of sunlight-suffused mist (or a kind of white, vertical expanse of an ocean of energy, feeling and intent).


    It is important to see that the ongoing disaster cannot be treated as an empirical issue. The shifting phases of capitalism are the latest empirical manifestations of the micrological and macrological functionings of the control mind (where these functionings can also be called the interestablishment), which is to say they are the latest expressions, at the level of the empirical, of a domain of the transcendental-empirical. (I made an attempt to point in this direction in On Vanishing Land by using the phrase "capitalism, the latest form of capitulation, whatever you call it").

      The fundamental act in connection with this situation is micropolitical - it is to set out along the escape-path, working in alliance with others to the maximum extent in the process of travelling along this path. 





      The year 1993 was the starting-point. For many 'western' countries - and certainly in Britain - this was a year that was one of the most intense phases of a process in which disaffection from ordinary existence went a long way into the mainstream, and in which a reaffection in the direction of radical, alternative parazones  (however minimal and/or temporary they might have been in each case) became a little more highly developed than normal. The two primary tonalities of what was happening were angry, critique-disaffection (at one level of focus or another), and edgy euphoria (a euphoria which maintained a kind of impersonal joy explicitly in the face of disturbing aspects of the world). Alongside these there was a melancholy disaffection, but the first two were a form which had two polarities. These modalities are always in effect, of course, but a specific high-intensity phase of instantiations took place, one which reached a maximum point around 1992-1994, and then faded down, with the angry critique-disaffection forms collapsing first (starting with those at the lowest level of focus) and with the more ecstatic forms fading last (with the exception of reverberant 'charged-but-dreamy' trance forms, which also disappeared rapidly).

    One of the parazones had formed in the philosophy department at the University of Warwick, and this parazone was capable of being a main element within a conduction - a conduction which in this case was a process whereby an individual could be moved toward a point where they were on the far edge of the vicinity. 

    However, in relation to my experience of this time, 1993 was not just a year in which I was a member of this parazone: more specifically it was the year in which I adopted two first-phase persistences which had close connections with the parazone (the persistences would outlive it, but the parazone was the main element in a wider process of them coming into focus for me as potentials). Because it was also the case that the parazone was closely connected to the wider process the conduction was closely connected to large-scale movements at this time in a way that what would happen later was not - to take a key instance, the point when, in 2003, I received a fundamental jolt (Section 34) does not seem to be connected to a wave of socio-cultural developments in the same direct way.

   The parazone was one which existed within a whole world of related disaffection/reaffection parazones, where many of these were extremely short-lasting, but designed to be so, because they were events which came and went, and some were short-lasting in a different sense, in that the parazone lasted a few months or years and then burned out. Along with other functionings of this force-field the parazone was a main - but very much not the only part - of the process of conduction (from around 1995 it was no longer even the most important part of it).

    
    
   It can be seen that there are two further elements of movements toward - and on - the espape-path, where these are both non-elective (primarily at least), so that they appear within the pragmatics of waking faculties in a way which is very subtle. These features are conductions and jolts.

   The conduction which has just been outlined has been delineated in sections 11, 15, 24, 25, and 40 (it is important to see that a very similar conductive process took place with other individuals who were at Warwick at this time, such as Mark Fisher.). And accounts have been given of jolts in sections 10, 34, 35 and 40 (the one described in section 35 is of a very different kind from the others, and provides a valuable contrast). 

 
     1978 to 1982 was the eerie-serene which deepened itself toward extraordinary new levels of lucidity. 1964 to 1970 was the slightly eerie and recurrently surreal-serene in the key of exuberance, which also had zones of the eerie-serene in the form of sustained abstract and oneric lucidity, so that it showed signs of what was to arrive around ten years later.

    In contrast 1990 to 1994 was the visionary feral, which did not have much ability to hold the focus on the escape-path. It was eerie in a darker sense, and overall it both did not have much tendency for the Futural to be more widely visible, and did not have much of the eerie-serene within it, apart from when it drew upon the earlier phases. Works by Deleuze and Deleuze/Guattari were vital for the Warwick parazone, and there is no doubt that you can feel the eerie-serene in the desert scenes in Oliver Stone's The Doors, but at a narrative level the deserts are 1960s deserts, and it is straightforwardly 1960s music which accompanies them. 

   When rave began emphatically to subside around 2005/2006 (to be replaced by the commercialised world of "EDM") I saw an extraordinary end-of-phase energy flare in the form of the last two successful Glade festivals. And the extreme intensity of this double event (2005 and 2006) came from the fact that it was the Futural eerie-serene of 1967, and in particular of 1980 to 1982, but where in comparison with the music-exuberance of 1967 (1980 - 1982 was less about music and more about fundamental outsights) the exuberance was hypercharged with high-speed electronic music dance-rhythms. By this time the earlier conduction had been boosted by an ultra-intense jolt, and on one level there was a way in which what those festivals were about was a conduction which had already taken place for me, starting in 1993. And yet, I would have to say that I was so boosted by them that they formed part of another conduction - one which consisted of the waking of the faculty of dreaming. They were the best of what had helped me in the earlier phase, in relation to dance, music, and courageously exploratory dance-subcultures, and I was helped again, but in a new way.

*

    It is the 22nd of December, 1978. I am fifteen. My mother and I are on a car journey which had started in Bradford, travelling south along the M1. It had already been dark when we set out, and it is now past 11pm. I am using a road atlas to navigate for my mother, and we take a main road - a dual carriageway - which is going west by southwest. I am feeling drowsy, on the edge of falling asleep, but we get off the dual carriageway at the correct junction, going up a slipway to a roundabout and turning left immediately along a road which initially is in countryside (there are hedges on either side of the road, and occasional trees). We cross a river - the river Avon - and I know from the map that we are about to arrive at our destination, Leamington Spa, a place I have not visited before (apart perhaps from when I was a very young child, but in any case I have no memories of it). My mother has not said much about the town (and certainly nothing at all that I now recollect), and it is not a destination in a full sense, in that it is a stopover place on the way to Devon. 


   I see the sign for the town, and after this there is a mile and a half of straight road which is to a great extent lined by mature trees, and which runs through an area of semi-detached and detached houses, with a series of roads crossing at right angles which also are long perspectives of trees and houses, lit up by streetlights. I feel a liking for this trees-and-humans terrain to the extent of being struck by it: the atmosphere is inspiring and evocative. I notice that I am completely awake. But the feeling is reminiscent of a feeling in a dream, in that it has a singular, slightly 'unplaceable' quality. Afterwards, in daylight, I discover that the town-centre affects me in a very similar way: I find it hearteningly and brightly charismatic, in a way that is something of an enigma. I think that part of the reason why I like it might be that it reminds me of Chistchurch, which was also built on a grid pattern, but the places are too different for me to feel that this is a good explanation (and I can add now that in relation to the approach road to the town I don't have any memories of places in Chistchurch which were similar).


   It is the question of places which now comes into the foreground, and specifically the question of towns. Because of the very close association between the interestablishment and cities the issue of towns - where the tendency is for the interestablishment to be slightly less in effect - is of primary importance. It is impossible to generalise across everything that receives the name 'town' but towns in this context are places which for functional reasons, and for reasons of scale, have a much greater degree of openness to the outside of the urban world (where urban world becomes a technical term which would include factories, Amazon warehouses, etc). There is therefore a kind of continuum of towns where, along with the size of the town, the key aspect is the degree to which the town is a hub for the countryside around it (providing goods for people from the surrounding rural areas), together with the degree to which there is a market or markets in the town into which goods can come in a way which is not corporate in form.


   What is at stake here is the extent to which the planetary (or, at least, non-urban) outside has a chance of impacting in a sustained way, the extent to which a place gives a slightly better chance in relation to arriving at the vicinity, and in relation to travelling along the escape-path. But having established the market-and-hub differential between towns is not in any way enough for choosing between them. The continuum of towns is distinguishable from that of cities, but there are singular points within the world of towns, where what is singular does not concern markets or scale. Both the location and overall micrological and macrological nature of the town are factors which are crucially additional to the scale and the degree of hub-and-market contact with the surrounding terrains.


    In relation to my own experience of towns, the place which stands out most of all is El Bolson, for the reasons which were given earlier in this section (and it will be seen that these relate to a great extent to the additional factors which have just been outlined). In relation to Britain two places which stand out are Malton - and Leamington. It is worth pointing out in relation to Leamington that in terms of location it makes a valuable contrast with El Bolson. What surrounds Leamington is inconspicuously beautiful countryside, which, on an extremely crowded island, is a very good form of countryside, in that it does not get damaged or destroyed by the tourist industry. (in El Bolson the protection is that the Andes are harder to damage, and Patagonia is, in relative terms, distant from the most heavily populated high wealth regions of the planet).


    However, the question of places must be taken further, in that it must be taken completely beyond the sub-set of human terrains (which is to say that it must become the question of places as such). From the point of view of transcendental-empiricism - of metamorphics - the idea of places is intrinsically planetary.

Everything now relates to modalities of becoming: and specifically to zones and forms of zones as producers of affects - producers of modalities of becoming. The sky, the forms of the sky (clear, cloudy, misty, windy), mountains, forests, deserts, agricultural countryside, heathlands, bodies of water.


The conclusion of this writing is that all of these zones, with the exception of the last one, are to be placed straightforwardly above cities as zones of becoming. Not only straightforwardly, but very radically above cities, in that they are intensificatory in relation to waking the faculties, and cities, as such, are the opposite (whatever may take place within them in relation to becomings of other kinds).


But - why the exception? A further conclusion is that the space of becomings that has water as its zone - particularly becomings in connection with the sea - are not straightforwardly valuable, in that it depends on the individual and the state of the individual. In relation to sustained becomings, the sea, in particular, has a slight, and somewhat enigmatic, sedative quality, and its value entirely depends on whether a sedative - or soporific force - is required. The jolt of seeing the sea in the distance, after not having not seen it for some time, is definitively valuable, but the value of sustained becomings depends on whether - through temperament or specific circumstances - the soporific force can be incorporated effectively into a life.




*



Across Explorations, Hidden Valleys and On Vanishing Land there has been a high degree of consistency in connection with these issues. Such consistency must be seen, however, as an ordinary, standard functioning of writing which is primarily an expression of the faculties of lucidity and dreaming, as opposed to it being writing which is dominated by the faculty of reason. Work which is transcendental-empirical must break open the view, and to be consistent is to follow the lines of the transcendental-empirical terrain that is being described.


We are surrounded by a bright world of forces which is simultaneously an immense darkness of the unknown. There is both glare and darkness but there are clear features visible within the world of forces which to different degrees will come into focus. Across time more of these formations will come into focus - and new ones will become discernible - while simultaneously your awareness of the darkness of the unknown deepens.


Go toward mountain, forest, desert, countryside, scurfland terrains, whatever is best, whatever is possible. If you are in a city, go toward areas close to heartening inspiring towns, or to these towns themselves. And in relation to non-urban terrains if you cannot go there in the actual, go there in the virtual-real (sustained, intensely charged dreaming is not easy to bring about, but it is important to remember that the virtual-real is no less real than the actual). In the process forget about Hegelian human-world narratives - for which the human world is the unfolding of the spirit - in a way where the re-focusing on the planetary is an increasing awareness of the bright-dark tremendum within which you are navigating, and within which the human world is just a tiny enbattled element.


The escape-path is the primary feature within the transcendental-empirical, and looking back over your shoulder, the adjacency and the interestablishment are features in a similar sense. These features are different from overall zones, forms of zone, and singular zones (the sky, the land; mountains, towns; individual mountains, individual towns). They are a further space of the transcendental-empirical (different from the zones, which pertain to the transcendental-empirical through being the sources of becomings). These features, together with the zones, all in different ways have a quality of being profoundly unknown, but, nonetheless, they are effective elements within a pragmatics of crossing upward-thresholds of existence - which is also a pragmatics of the deepening of understanding. Go toward the escape-path; don't go toward the interestablishment; if you find yourself going toward the adjacency, navigate to get a boost from it, back in the direction of the escape-path, rather than crash-landing on it. And movement along the escape-path, understood in terms of waking the faculties, is the application of a pragmatics which in particular has been delineated in the final sections of this project: from section 46 onwards. The initial stages of the process of waking the faculties have been given an exemplification, and have been set out along the lines of generic principles of a pragmatics (for instance, in relation to gaps and persistences) which is to say that a first part of the escape-path has been made visible.


(We have been walking past cairns which form the beginning of a path across high mountains. But it is for everyone to travel along the further extent of this path and validate it for themselves. It is for everyone, including myself, to see how far the path goes).



*



Writing which to a high degree is an expression of lucidity has three main modalities: philosophy, the oneiric, and comedy. The different modalities of 1980 to 1982 in subtle ways are intermixed with each other, but it is still possible to make differentiations at the level of specific works. There was philosophy in the form of three immensely different books (but all three united by a central element of anthropology which was either becoming or had become metamorphics), these books being The Eagle's Gift, Shabono, and A Thousand Plateaus; there was the oneiric in a wide variety of forms, including songs, where the range of the forms is best exemplified by Fanny and Alexander, Sapphire and Steel, Wild Seed, and A Kiss in the Dreamhouse; and there was a writer whose work whose modality was predominantly that of comedy - Douglas Adams.


A somebody else's problem field "relies on people's natural predisposition not to see anything they don't want to..." (Life, the Universe and Everything, 1982). In pointing out that at each stage the human world of capitalism is dependent on the suffering of people in factory sweatshops (and that in having been drawn into cities they are caught in traps which make them exceptionally vulnerable if for some reason the jobs disappear) one is almost always talking into the face of a somebody else's problem field. In the same way in talking about the overall suffering of wage servitude - and about the specific fact that during circumstances like that of the Covid-19 epidemic the people who are paid least are much more likely to die, both because of where they live and because they are expected to serve on the front line in shops etc - again there is likely, in response, to be the same phenomenon of blocking of attention. If it is pointed out that things do not progressively get better, but that first-phase exploitation zones, having improved a little, then collapse into the suffering of rustbelts, while the exploitation is exported elsewhere, then again, the blocking modality of the somebody else's problem field is likely to be in effect. In a background way such statements are treated in part as if they were truisms such as 'if you drop things, they fall' and in part as objectionable attempts at rabble-rousing, but in the foreground there is likely to be the idea that even if things are the way they are being described, they will get better, and it is not up to you to solve the problem. And the combination of all the elements means that it all can slip out of sight again, as something that you simply don't see.


But whose problem could it be? Predominantly the background view is that the problem is that of a tendency or force of Progress within the human world. Which of course is exactly what the insights which are being ignored (and which will be forgotten) are showing does not exist.


Part of what allows this tour de force of not-thinking to take place is the fact that no pragmatic outcome can be envisaged in relation to taking up these views. However, what this misses is that it is possible to focus on the planetary (rather than on the delusional zeitgeist-hero of the human world), and to depart from all of the dogmatic images and reactive affects of the latest form of the ongoing disaster. What it misses is that part of the pragmatics of waking the faculties is being able to bring the ongoing disaster into focus.


The empirical details of systems of exploitation, and of overall systemic processes involving suffering, and attenuated, deadened lives, are not in the end capable, on their own, of taking attention to the point where it can see the transcendental-empirical nature of the latest form of the disaster. However, because they show something which is systemic they are profoundly indicative, pointing attention in the right direction. But what is fundamentally the right direction is the escape-path. It is necessary to set out immediately into the Future - and although this is not something that can be planned for, maybe one day, somehow, something will return from the Future which will be capable of neutralising the transcendental-empirical forces that underlie capitalism.



*   


     You have climbed to a forested summit of a mountain range, a journey that has lasted two days. It is late afternoon, and there is a warm breeze. There are small birds in the pine-trees. The sky is bright blue, but in the far distance there is a cumulonimbus cloud. A lot has happened on the way up the mountain and the sublime intensity of the place in combination with these events will inspire stories and ideas for years to come. But although you have been immensely inspired and energised by the place around you - the terrain of forested mountains - this is not the same as to say that you are being 'looked after': later if you wander around in the dark you will not be protected from precipices or from lightning.

   In waking the faculties we need to start from perception, and from dreaming. And with stories (with 'dreamings') it is the breath-of-fresh-air affect of the tutelary that is part of what tells you that you have found something which is valid and valuable. The affect is a lightness, an affirmation of pragmatics and of exploration/validation, a lack of gravity, a lack of an imposition that impels you toward the passivity and indulgence of a delusion of being transcendentally 'cared for'.  

   You are with friends in a forest and you meet another group of friends (unconnected to your group), and someone from this other group is an expert in something which is your speciality - singing, or tales, or philosophy, or dance. They are at a level beyond you, and yet it is a real reciprocal exchange or communication. They learn from you, but at an extraordinary level they teach you, and then they are gone, with a friendly wave - a wave full of the joy of the encounter, and which has a bright intensity that in part comes from an awareness that you are unlikely to meet again. 

    In relation to the world of human beings this second story gives something of the affect of the tutelary. But in relation to the encompassing world of the planet it is the first story we should have in mind. The tutelary involves finite beings in a non-symmetrical alliance with each other, or finite beings in some kind of extremely unequal reciprocal intensificatory connection, even if the beings on either side of the connection are on very different scales, and no matter how unequal the degrees of intensification. 




*


four modalities of the impersonal 



 Everything here relates to modalities which are involved in delineating an external domain of energy formations which impact upon human individuals and wake their faculties, and an external impersonal force which can be described as a kind of force field consisting immanently of the formations.

   My experiences in - and while travelling toward - Tannu Tuva give the basis for talking about two of the modalities of the impersonal, and part of the basis for another. 

   The first modality is planetary - although at depth it involves all encompassing finite worlds which are at am immensely higher scale than a given individual (therefore, for a human being the sphere of the solar system is another of these worlds).

    Almost everything in the intense, anomalous events of the Tuva trip was planetary. The dream in Kyzyl together with the two thunderstorms; the coming into full focus of the breathing technique with its built-in envisaging of the planet; the experiences of seeing and feeling into the depths and surface terrains of the two mountain summits, and of experiencing them as like two women with very different ways of being; the different songs and reverie-worlds on the flight to Abakan, and, in particular the last of the songs:

   Be as ghostly as the silence that is blowing through the mountain
   Be as eerie as the forest that is dreaming through the river
   Be as empty as the lovers who you'll find all through the cosmos
   Be as silent as the dreamers in the wind


  The second modality is that of the alien - of that which has a radical alterity which is best described as alien. The woman in the mountain-top dream (who was telling me in some way about the colour blue) was experienced as being alien, even though visually she was in the form of a human being. It was not simply an alterity - it was that she was experienced as being from somewhere beyond the solar system. 

   In this context it is important to include the phenomenon of 'the voice of seeing' as described in the works of Castaneda, where the tendency for small moments of lucidity - phrases expressing outsights, and other forms of lucidity - to come into the mind from 'nowhere' is described as 'alien energy which has conciseness.' It could seem that this is purely following the line of the word alien, but the register is cosmological when it is also described as like 'a wind blowing on the strings of eternity,' and Castaneda's works have many descriptions of alien beings in the sense involved: they are described as 'scouts' from elsewhere in the cosmos - and the descriptions, in the first two books, of experiences of encountering Mescalito - a being who is a teacher in that he shows you outsights in the form of images - are given an extraterrestrial slant in that when the question is asked 'does he take you to the sky?' (cielo) the response given is that he takes you through the sky. To these experiences I would want to add (with an attached question mark) the end-of-dream phrases that were described in Section 37, and the four lines of the song above, because they seem to fit well with Castaneda's delineation, and because of them having a singular and serene affect of alterity, which stands out from other forms of alterity.

   (It can be seen that these can be taken as experiential modalities, such that, if nothing else, the alterity would be a form of functioning on the part of the unconscious. And it is also the case that each modality can be viewed as forming the basis of one of four registers for giving an account of the impersonal).

  (The first - planetary - modality is impersonal not because of the dogmatic attribution to it of the characteristic of being inert, blind matter, but because of the gigantic difference in scale, and the inclusion of individual human beings in some sense within it (even if this is contingent on the individual not having left in a spaceship), so that the relationship between planet and individual is like the relationship between the individual and her or his cells: the individual is simply too miniscule for it to be anything other than an impersonal relationship. The second modality is impersonal in the sense that the idea of alien beings - alien experiential 'instances'; alien formations of intent  - does not in any way include the idea that such beings, if they exist, would have a natural tendency to take care of you). 


    The third modality is that of the energy-current, or river, where the term river has had its range widened to include the transcendental-empirical, and where the energy-current consists of many formations. There has therefore been a shift at this point from individual finite forms to an energy-instance which in some sense is a combination of the affects/functionings of many finite forms. And the river very fundamentally includes all of the different aspects or attributes of the formations. It consists at depth of openness toward the world - of exteriority - very centrally including openness at the level of perception, and this is intrinsically inseparable not only from intent but also from the virtual-real in the form of dreaming. However, what is most important here is what will turn out to be a fundamental aspect of the fourth modality (the river is really a localised manifestation of the fourth modality). The key aspect of the river in terms of its effect is being swept forward by it, but what characterises it as a whole, is that it indiscriminately sweeps forward whoever falls into it. This makes it impersonal as a force: it functions across all levels, but it has the non-discriminating aspect of a force such as water, or electricity.

    I always felt there was something enigmatic about the term 'dreaming' in the song from the flight to Abakan, particularly in the context of the whole of the line in which it appears. However to go further here it is best to include the moment from the end of the story "Erdinet" (in section 48), before arriving at a delineation of the fourth modality by means of an experience that took place a few months before the trip to Tuva.


    "He was aware now that there were two currents - or rivers - in the worlds of human beings. One was the river of ordinary existence, and the other was the river of freedom, of joy. And what was profoundly valuable in the first river was profoundly valuable in the second river, but it was in the second river that it focused itself as something sublime. What gave value to something in the second current was not whether it simply belonged to the space of things which had a high level of 'standing' in the world - whether this was a love-relationship, or a customary practice, or a ger-place, or a song - but was whether it could transcend itself and reach a higher level through being part of the second river; it was whether it could travel in the direction of wider and deeper experiences, and of love-for-the-world." 


     The fourth modality is that of the overall impersonal force. Here what is being delineated relates to the world of the cosmos we are currently capable of encountering, and is a force consisting on one level of finite formations, where this force is intrinsically bound to other forces. The following is from the description of the experience in the summer of 2010 that is central to section 44:




     "I saw two immense filaments that stretched out into the cosmos, filaments that I knew ultimately were connected, at some unthinkably remote distance. One of these was bright, and was the energy-instance that I have described (see section 36) as the 'other force.' It could also be given the name intent. This force was the planet as such (as opposed to elements that were like viruses, lodged within it), and in the same way was the fundamental nature of human beings. 

    The second force had a grey-dark quality, and was the control mind, or "control-force": a construct of forces consisting of reactive fixation of attention on a narrow band of aspects of the world, and - primarily - of the will to keep everything under control, to dominate, to not let go; to maintain current holdings at all costs, in the face of the radically unknown.

    Everything was very serene, very calm: it was a world of forces that were peacefully floating alongside each other. And yet at the same time an immense struggle was taking place on the planet. The two filaments were in a struggle with each other, and they were racing to take maximal advantage of the imminent peak in the hundred-thousand year planet-and-sun cycle of arrival of solar energy. 

    The struggle did not appear to have much to do with human beings. The control-force was instantiated by a non-planetary or alien energy-instance, something which was parasitic - a predator. And intent was pre-eminently a planetary energy-instance (it was the planet, and it was the beings of the planet as elements that were similar to neurons of a brain). And both forces, additionally, were forces that stretched out into, and through, the totality of this cluster of dimensions of the cosmos.

    The battle was serene for two reasons. The first was that the planet felt no moral rage against the predator, any more than someone would feel moral rage against a flu virus. But a more intrinsic reason why it was serene was that the two filaments were filaments of one energy-instance, so that at this wide perspective the struggle was like a play of light, a shimmering between two rays radiating from one being, a being / energy-instance that was in the deepest sense neutral in relation to the fate of the planet and its creatures. 

    But the serenity, finally, was inseparable from the fact that there was always more to the cosmos, in the sense that there was always more to freedom. The neutral energy-instance stretched through the totality of this cluster of dimensions of the cosmos, but it was clear that there were always more clusters of dimensions, at higher and higher levels of intensity, of freedom."


    In The Eagle's Gift there is the assertion that the multi-lineament force which has Exteriority (intent, the other force) as one of its filaments in fact has provided this force to perpetuate awareness, where awareness is a virtual-real aspect of beings which the force consumes when beings die (consuming in the process the whole of each being, and not just its awareness). Beings are given a chance to depart for a further world of the cosmos, because the process of this opportunity being occasionally taken up boosts the energy-supply for the force, perpetuating it as prey.  Embodying intent make it possible to leave for a zone of the cosmos at a higher level of freedom, but the chance does not come from being looked after, but from the multi-lineament force perpetuating its food supply (it is important to remember Castaneda's dictum that "the cosmos is predatory to the maximum").  This, once again, is the impersonal.

  
*



     It is now possible to return to the issue of the three forms of the tutelary which were indicated in section 46. These are the forms of the tutelary which seem to have been primary in my life: visits to wilderness, semi-wilderness and scurfland terrains; dream and semi-trance experiences; and books/films/songs which are expressions of a love of the Outside of ordinary, deadened reality - which are expressions of a way of being that can be called Exteriority (section 46).

     It is important at this point to hold in mind the idea of the first modality of the impersonal - that of the planet as a zone which has a deep-level aspect in the form of the 'other force.'  This is because it is necessary to move toward a displacement of the ordinary-reality view of the tutelary instances which have just been delineated.

    The customary view is this: the writers and film-makers and songwriters were the tutelary; the dream and semi-trance experiences were the work of my unconscious helped by the writers and artists, and everything else was inspiring, interesting raw materials - experiences in mountains and forests (etc.) which may have been heartening and thought-provoking, but which were not instances in any way of the tutelary. This is the perspective which must be displaced. 

   Writers say, again and again, that the process of writing was like a river running through them: that the experience was one of the ideas and/or the story arriving from outside and sweeping them into the process of writing. This model is not that of the unitary subject (who plods around with raw inert materials which have come into the mind through experiences) but is that of an individual who as such is the outside on the inside - the outside flowing through the inside, and it is this model - which comes from the writers themselves - which seems in every way to be the lucid, non-reactive model (the unitary subject is evidently a key part of the furniture of the control mind). 

   The personal unconscious comes into focus as an attempt to hold onto the unitary subject by giving it some internal complexity, and as an attempt to block the thought that most fundamentally we are perceivers into which worlds are continually arriving, where these worlds go into profound effect within us - so that what is being blocked most of all is the idea that the going-into-effect of the planet is a primary aspect of what has been called the unconscious. 

   It can be seen that on this - planetary - basis it makes sense that in visiting wilderness terrains, and attempting at the same time to stop internal verbalising and follow the lines of the terrains, the planet as tutelary instance would go into intensified effect.

   And it also makes sense that along with predominant ordinary-reality dreams, consisting of the urgencies and anxieties that are main aspects of the functioning of the control mind within dreaming, there are other, expansive dreams in the form of serene explorations of spaces (primarily outdoor spaces) which have an affect of joy, and which have a very different - planetary - source. (the opposite of the grey stress of urgencies is the brightness and serenity of explorations).

   Under normal circumstances the majority of dreams are a kind of control mind detritus, and are not worth any thought. And then there are the dreams which are valuable, in that they consist in different ways of outsights, and of prepossessingly instructive and enjoyable journeys in the virtual-real. As has been seen the main criterion here is validity. And if you were to ask about telling these apart from the urgency dreams, what is intrinsic to them is the breath-of-fresh-air feeling of joy and of expansiveness, or of some feeling that comes with a process of directly understanding something within a dream (this is an opposition to an urgency) where even in the second case there is a kind of background serenity, and a joy that is an aspect of the process of understanding.

    In section 46 there was the detailed account of a whole sequence of dreams of this second kind. And throughout Explorations there have been accounts of journeys in wllderness/scurfland terrains which have delineated these journeys as tutelary, life-changing events (in particular see section 45). 

   In relation to semi-trance experiences, and experiences of being swept away into a process of writing/creating, the overall impact of the new account is of individuals going into the background. In the ordinary-reality model for seeing these forms of the tutelary (the model of the unitary subject) there is nothing but teachers in the form of individuals. With the basis of the planetary (as a primary tutelary modality) the tutelary exists across all three of the different instances, and although individuals are parts of the process of expression/composition, and have a real degree of independence in relation to the planet, the fundamental way of seeing them in the circumstances involved is as beings with a river running through them. ("Writing now functions on the same level as the real, and the real materially writes" - A Thousand Plateaus: Athlone, 1988, p.141).



*



      I have pitched my tent alongside a field that is high up on a hill overlooking Oviedo, in the Asturias region of northern Spain. The lights of Oviedo - a small city - are clear in the deep twilight in the valley, but there is still some light in the sky to the northwest. In the field there are seven or eight glow-worms in the grass.

     I had arrived in the afternoon at Asturias airport, which is near the coast, ten miles to the north. It is late July of 2005, and, while working in the centre of the London, I have just done a ten day circuit around the city, camping in a different wooded terrain each night - the beginning of the phase of living in the woodlands of London (the places on average were about seven miles from the centre), in the form of an exploration of different areas which might be good for this non-standard form of commuter existence (several of these places will be used by me on dozens of occasions over the next two and a half years).

    I have come to this area to walk in the mountains of the western part of the Asturias range (a terrain with forests extensive enough to support populations of bears and wolves), and the idea is that after two weeks I will travel across northern Spain to Barcelona, to pick up my return flight. 

    In coming to these mountains I am following persistences. I have not come with any project in mind in terms of finding inspiration for stories (either specifically, in relation to a successor project for londonunderlondon, or in general). I am here to follow the lines and singular zones of the terrain, and to let go toward sustained perception of it. The plan is therefore about entering into becoming with the places through which I will be travelling, and is about a navigation without maps, but it is wider than a focus relating to specific faculties. And to say this is inseparable from saying that there is a lightness about the journey, in that primarily I am here for the joy of being in this terrain, so that, even though I am aware of the dangers of high mountains, there is a delight - and lack of structure - about this visit that is similar to the joy of the Glade festival two weeks before.


    Curving around the top of the field there is a narrow sunken lane which has been abandoned to vegetation, seemingly ten or fifteen years earlier. My tent is pitched at the very end of it. About forty feet further down there is a derelict car - little more than a rusting shell - which presumably had been driven to its current position before the lane was allowed to become overgrown.

    In the morning a story comes into my mind. It feels a bit like a graphic novel, and although the terrain of the story is the same as my surroundings, the setting could be the UK or the USA. 

   There is a woman and a man who are in their early twenties, and who are both very disaffected from their community. They share a feeling that there is something else, beyond the aspects of life that tend to be seen by people in their community. They are not in a relationship with each other, although they definitely could be. But somehow their virtual relationship is not the story.

    On the hill above where they live there is sunken lane which has been left to become overgrown, and there is an old car that has been abandoned: it is battered and rusty, but it still has front seats and glass in the windscreen. The woman and man sometimes go and sit in the car to smoke a joint. 

    One evening they take a hallucinogen - maybe LSD -  and they go and sit in the car. At one point everything becomes intensely bright through the windscreen - the experience is of seeing a landscape which is made of light or plasma, and the atmosphere of this terrain is hauntingly sublime, despite - and because of - the terrain having a high degree of alterity. It is as if they are seeing hills and buildings and trees which have all been made out of a serenity that exists deep within lightning - it is a place which beckons toward them, giving them the feeling of a momentous hidden potential within human existence.

    The experience is a catalyst. A stasis is broken, and their lives move forward.

  *  
    
   It is four days later, and I am walking along the top of a forested mountain-ridge. It is the middle of the day, and I am walking with the sun in my face. This phrase comes into my mind:

  We are a love of way beyond

*

   It is early afternoon of the next day. I have walked through the morning, and I have stopped in a small glade in an area of scrubby forest that is spread across a wide, steeply tilted valley. Most of the trees are not very tall, but there is a stand of taller trees on the side of the glade which I am facing.

  I decide I will look toward these trees, and attempt to become an unbroken perception of the day. After five or ten minutes of trying I start to get the feeling I am looking at glass which has a green pattern on it, but which allows you to see through to something else.

   After a while there is an experience of the view through the glass becoming focused, and I am seeing a house with a steeply pitched wooden roof, surrounded by trees. It is the kind of roof that is used in places where there is a lot of snow: there is a feeling of being in mountains, a feeling of being somewhere like Sweden, although the place has a specific atmosphere which is about trees and high mountains, and the location is indeterminate.

  Then nothing happens for a few minutes. But I get back to the occasional impression of seeing patterned glass. Then another view beyond the glass appears. I am seeing a hedge labyrinth which stretches upwards and away from me, extending for miles, on tilted ground, until it becomes forests and occasional open spaces: the forest terrain is on the lower and middle-height parts of a tall mountain. I have a view into the nearer parts of the maze - as if I have climbed thirty feet above the maze, and have a slightly downward perspective which allows me to see the labyrinth while still having the mountain in my field of view. Here and there are isolated figures, women and men, all motionless.They are deep in the maze, and although I know they are trying to find the way out, there is a feeling that the problem is extremely hard. All of the individuals are on their own, and it seems that none of them can see out of it. In relation to its foreground the view has an evocative sad-and-yet-serene atmosphere that reminds me of very abstract surrealist paintings, and the same aspect - the people in the hedge-labyrinth - is also faintly reminiscent of Last Year in Marienbad. But I feel that there is a positivity - and lack of passivity - about what I am seeing, and that the deep truth about the people is that they are in motion; that the image is like a photograph, so that I cannot see their movement. The fundamental impression is of a sunlit, hyper-real beauty and of fresh air from the Outside - the sunlight and the long-distance view entirely transcending the struggle in the labyrinth.


*


My tent is pitched by a small stream, in an area of forest in the mountains of the Sierra de la Demanda. This will be my last night in the mountains.

I start thinking about stories (and groups of stories), and about how they are worlds into which people step, and about how these virtual-real worlds are inhabited by people, often in ways which profoundly influence their lives (the power of dreamings is indicated by the world of 'fans,' but is indicated at an immensely higher level by dreamings which are expressions of a pragmatics and metaphysics of travelling into the Future). And then a moment later I have the idea of someone waking up in a town in Warwickshire - Leamington - and hearing an eerie sunlit quietness, and then discovering that the town is surrounded by forest, and is a place of bright empty streets, populated by birds and animals, and by fifty or sixty humans who have woken up to discover that everything has changed.

   It is the idea of an emergent parallel world, in the specific form of this world being a new dream on the part of the planet. Almost immediately there is the thought that it has doorways which lead to further worlds.

    To follow this thought of threshold-crossings in a way which has close contact with human potentials, it will be necessary to draw upon the human capacity for becomings, at the level of perception, but also at the wider level that relates to the existence of a further sphere of action, beyond that of ordinary reality. And simultaneously there is the critique-question that emerges within the world of the story: if the planet has dreamed a parallel world into existence, and has edited something out in the form of almost all of the elements of the darkly haunted human world (experienced as darkly haunted from the vantage of the story), then what exactly is it, both in the story and in reality, that is haunting human beings? In multiple ways I am being drawn toward oneiric thought - thought in the modality of dreaming.  

   *

   In the FNAC bookshop in Barcelona (three days later) I am swept into a reverie where I remember the dream from 1997: the house five miles from Malton, surrounded by forest; the woman who in some sense is a leader of a group which consists of a Departure; a woman who has an ordinary-world quality, but who is, as I would put it now, a practitioner of metamorphics. The feeling about this woman is that she has followed the joy and practicality of immediacy to the point where it has saturated every pore with delight, and to the point where the immediacy has become the abstract at a momentously higher level than the one which is experienced in ordinary reality. She is a navigator in infinity, whose navigation consists of a journey into the Future.


     
    

   

                                                                      * * *