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The joyful Act

Posted by nivenkumar, 13 January 2009 · 4,072 views

I have become increasingly sceptical of action, of  
acting. All action is action in reaction. We are never alone. is there a possibility for a pure action? The act for the act;s sake, for the joy of acting. Theoretically, there is such a thing. But the act, once executed, like a text, is sent forth into the collective, and like the text, is read, interpreted, dissected, reviewed, rejected, scorned, and reacted upon, spawning other text-acts or act-texts. Authorship is a mirage, for any act, joyful or no, is already a supplicant to a greater textual regime. We no longer speak with our own voices, for there is no one singular, but a murmur of voices that intersect all action. One's joy can only come from the hope that the act-text is heard/read/watched/thought.




Niven, I am skeptical of "revolutions" for the same reasons: how can there be revolutionary acts shorn of their steady development, context, presuppositions, and so on? I think even so-called tipping points or radical actions prove to be not so immediate or sudden on deeper analysis. Then again, for literature as much as history, why should matters be otherwise? It seems to me that a truly radical and unexpected action could not be understood as such by virtue of its character, and likewise for a text.
I have become increasingly sceptical of action, of acting. All action is action in reaction.Infinite regress.  I think for there to be reaction, there must be action in the first place.We are never alone. is there a possibility for a pure action? The act for the act;s sake, for the joy of acting.But action for the joy of acting isn't for action for it's own sake.  Such action still has reason and purpose.Is there such a thing as pure action?  I don't know.I think even so-called tipping points or radical actions prove to be not so immediate or sudden on deeper analysis.I agree with Nietzsche in that the greatest event is the greatest thought.  I think this is because a great event emerges only after a great deal of subterrainial development.  Often it is a thought that sets the initial spark, but then combustion occurs in rare instances deep in the woods with no one around.But the act, once executed, like a text, is sent forth into the collective, and like the text, is read, interpreted, dissected, reviewed, rejected, scorned, and reacted upon, spawning other text-acts or act-texts.An interesting take: for instance, can an act be undone through interpretation?  Yet it seems that interpretation requires action and lacks substance on it's own.  You can interpret something written down, but you can't interpret it's absence.Anyway, these are the sorts of questions that I've been asking, though I'm sure that asking them is besides the point.  I just have to submit to my will.
"But action for the joy of acting isn't for action for it's own sake. Such action still has reason and purpose." Yes, I have nothing against the reason and purpose, but it seems to me, and please correct me if you think I am wrong, this purpose and reason is always directed at, or addressed to a public, the "ideal" public to use a literary term. All Acts are performative, by this alone, we admit other voices, other presences, so that the joy of acting for the sake of the sheer joy of it is already nothing but the joy of the performance, which ushers in the audience.
Hi Niven! Do think there has ever been a pure act? If there hasn’t ever been such an act because "all acts are performative," then is the pure act an ideal that has never been part of human experience? Or was there an Eden where/when the pure act was possible but which we were driven out of by the burgeoning of culture and self-consciousness? If this is the case, and the pure act was part of human experience in a pre-cultural past, could it be thought of as an artifact? Have we moved on to another reality that no longer includes the possibility of the pure act? Or do you think it would be possible to create the conditions within or around oneself that could circumvent culture and possibly allow for the pure act?
I don't know Niven.  You're talking to someone who, on the whole, isn't very conscious of the other people around him.  It's takes effort to realize that other people are there.I might take better to the point that we are performing to ourselves, our own inner audience of expectations.  I want to be the sort of person who I approve of.  Therefore, I act.