Yoga or the deleuzian Body without Organs !

I will not mention in this post the many benefits of yoga that can be found a click away if you Google it. I am more interested to point out the specificities of yoga as a Body without Organs or BwO as I would refer to all along this post.

The BwO is a complex concept of the french philosopher Gilles Deleuze (1925-1995), one of the most compelling and intriguing philosophers:

The BwO refers to the deeper reality underlying some well-formed whole, constructed from fully parts. At the same time the BwO may also describe a relationship to one’s literal body, for example: in yoga (Deleuze gives the example of anorexia). To say it differently, the BwO is when the body stops working as an organism and starts to take on a certain perspective on reality, far from the normal behaviour of a human towards his or her body.

Deleuze began using the term in The logic of sense (1969), while discussing the experiences of playwright Antonio Artaud. Later the term BwO would expand in meaning and become one of the major concepts of Capitalism and Schizophrenia  (in its 2 volumes written with Félix Guattari: Anti-Oedipus [1972] and A thousand plateaus [1980]). The BwO is an exploration of depths by rejecting the surface completely and returning to the body. Furthermore, Deleuze describes an undifferentiated unhierarchical realm that lies deeper than the world of appearances as it is told in mythologies. This underlying realm is an idea found in the yogic tradition saying that the Absolute lies deeper than the Veil of Maya or the illusionary appearances of what we see in our daily world. The daily world is the Veil of Maya (Matrix I, the movie, explores this idea). Deleuze explains the BwO by the image of the Dogon egg (or the Genesis of the cosmos) as a container of the germs of things that starts to develop within the egg:

Let’s go back to yoga and see how the the BwO of the yogic’s body is a Dogon egg where emotions, ideas, capacities, creativity, wisdom etc… start to develop and extend through inhuman postures (it hurts just by looking at them!) as shown in the pictures bellow:

Then, energy flows, body brain and mind are freed (the 3 are the same entity). This becoming is like any kind of birth: it takes time, it is violent and painful, it is the Nietzsche’s “becoming who you are”; at the end it is joyful! Therefore, yoga is a BwO experience leading towards new becomings, such as the Genesis of the cosmos!


Southern India (1)

Loved the accurate description of this trip!

Mick Canning

Southern India differs from the north in several respects. The first difference that the visitor tends to notice, once they have got away from the typical Indian maelstrom of airport, traffic, city centre, etc, is that with the less densely concentrated population comes a somewhat more laid-back atmosphere and attitude than in the north. The hassles and pressures, the touts, are still there, but seem somehow less intense.

The second real difference is in the culture. Southern India was never really assimilated into the Mogul empire, and only ever partly conquered, so there is a huge wealth of Hindu architecture and a proportional lack of Islamic, with next to no Buddhist remains and no continuing tradition of Buddhism at all. At times, it seems as though the visitor has entered a different country, but India has a way of reasserting itself on the senses…

trichy stall

Stall outside Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple, Tiruchirappalli…

View original post 397 more words

Philosophy: the emergency kit



I was asked to do a small seminar about the relationship between philosophy and religion throughout history. Not a small task, I decided to go very simple and schematic, knowing that my audience is made of people who are not familiar with philosophy. Therefore I divided the session into 4 parts:

  • The ancient Greek philosophy: the turning point was that philosophy started as a rational thinking to explain everything, instead of relying on religion that offers an irrational explanation of the world
  • The Christian era until the end of the Middle age: here philosophy was the spoke person of religion
  • Modernity until the beginning of the 20th century: a separation between religion and philosophy. Philosophy as the big critic of religion and religiosity
  • 20th century until now: Post-modernity is a difficult time where everything is exaggerated. On one hand there is pure reason, science and philosophy and on the other hand, there is religion as an identity crisis.

I believe that the main aim of philosophy nowadays is to give religion what it deserves by cleaning it from all forms of religiosity and fanatisme, by undermining the political power of it, and saving spirituality. This world needs spirituality in its large meaning, as much as it needs nicer people, more humans and humanists from all sides. 095

life is a precipice!

via Daily Prompt: Precipice

As I read the word “precipice” on the daily prompt, I couldn’t help eating a chocolate egg. The link between eating chocolate and the precipice relies on the fact that eating chocolate, while I am on a diet, is choosing to jump into the pleasurable precipice. And that’s life: an ongoing precipice. Always having to make choices and take actions… or not. regretting an action or regretting no to make any action. Life is exciting and living is always edgy. I have learnt this lesson the hard way.

Being born in a war zone, and living half of my life under bombs, in Lebanon, I have come to learn that living is surviving. In the survival mode, everything is a precipice but one must take the risk, walk the walk and go on. The price of it? Life or death. There is always a kind of pleasure in the free fall!


Gossiping in the hospital 

Gossiping, as bla bla bla talk, is an emptiness filling, people can’t remain silent for too long, hence the difficulty of meditation. As silence is energy (at least in the eastern philosophy), I wonder where talkative people get their energy from and why do they speak that much. Sometimes I ask myself this question, for I am a teacher, going tired to class and ending up speaking for hours! Besides that I am paid to speak and besides the constant social media harassment and communication forcing, why is their a need to share stories, sometimes stupid ones? In a noisy world where one needs to lock oneself in a bedroom to be silent  (unless one lives in a big city), why isn’t all the outside agitation enough? 

As I was sitting in the hospital cafétéria,  two women were sitting nearby and one of them was endlessly talking; from her favourite meal to the story of her life, all this in a loud pitch (so I heard the whole conversation but I wasn’t suppose to), are we looking after all for visibility and recognition? For what and how? Even for ditching private lives in public? Even for public figures, artists, politicians, tweeting? So all this is the new way to deal with things and everything posted is ok?

Back to the hospital. The talkative woman probably took some weight off her chest. Her mate maybe wanted to give her support. All this is fine. But me? I was confused: I didn’t want to listen but I did! Although, speaking in a loud voice would suggest that this woman wanted everybody to hear her story, just like posting a picture on social media so everyone can see it. Again, is this all ok and acceptable?
Informations, opinions, speeches, lies, truths, elections, votes… they are all the same. If any of these could change the world, they would have been stopped!