The Wicked Watch of the West shows thirty seconds before the ‚Gnostic Apocalypse‘. In the meantime, the world clock has advanced to two minutes until serious and irreversible damage to human’s and all other organism’s eco-habitat: Earth. Thank Gods, for a subterranean exhibition in Vienna that will guide us out of our infinite mirror-reflection in the coded sphere.
Karin Ferrari (yes, a google research proves this is actually her real name), opens the context of her exhibition The Map is the Territory with a quote by Marc Pesce, contemporary Futurist and teacher. He noted in 1995:
„Both cyberspace and magical space are purely manifest in the imagination. Both spaces are entirely constructed by your thoughts and beliefs. [Alfred] Korzybski says that the map is not the territory. Well, in magic, the map is the territory. And the same thing is true in cyberspace. There’s nothing in that space you didn’t bring in“ (Pesce & Davis (Wired), 1995).
Well, both, Alfred and Marc are right. There exists no meaning in nature, so the map is always an abstraction that is prone to deception. Whatever is introduced or added to the abstraction becomes a part of its (virtual) reality. In Whitehead’s sense, for example, any correlation, significant object or phenomena is genuinely symbolic (artificial). This means that whatever we recognize is a product of our receptiveness towards it. Whatever is meaningful, is meaningful, because we basically believe it is. That’s why he suggests that all knowledgeable facts should be in constant review in order to be sure that the belief is not just being reaffirmed. This is the great task of epistemology and science. Very few facts are really natural (the laws of nature i.e.) and more or less unshakably true. But these have to be continuously reapproved, as well. A great load of work may come along if CERN really discovers the Higgs(God’s)-Particle.
On a smaller scale, the relation between human and facts becomes more obvious. Calculation in arithmetic, for example, is based on the decimal, which counts 10 fingers. I really love to remember this fun fact when people discuss the serious issues of the digital: the word originates in ‚digitus‘ which is Latin for ‚finger‘. The digital revolution is basically a bunch of upright walking animals counting their fingers. I know this sounds polemic and there is real insight to gain in digital analysis. But: this map is really not the territory. The territory (matter of the universe) is genuinely indifferent to humans. Thank God!
But even in the virtual realities of the WWW, it seems that the gravitation of the mass is indifferent to the beauty of our online-postings. In his essay Comrads of Time from 2009, Boris Groys doubts that today’s society is that of the spectacle and remarks that if it was, „it seems to be a spectacle without spectators“ (Groys 2009). The only entity that may recognize our actions, he argues—apart from the snippets that factually any profane user grasps and likes in their 10 min scroll on Facebook—is the eye of God. So, this map is a virtual territory, and very likely, a gnostic one.
In the past eight years, it seems that (global)societies are returning online to their gnostic roots. A lot of magic is in the air. Away with Nietzsche’s dictum and give us superstition! Let’s see which spirits appear on the ouija(wifi)-board of the Internet. May our fingers on the glass screen be lead by the sacred energies of the scroll!
Karin Ferrari gives us the opportunity to do exactly this in a live Séance on May 23, 2017, 7 pm at Gallerie Jünger. Characteristic for (not-so-)secret societies is that you have to ring the bell. Same procedure here. There could be some virtual truths revealed while reading out our motions on the magical grid. In the light of current global affairs, we can be glad that the virtual map does not materialize immediately in our territory. It only happens to the divine, their spouse and children that words become flesh.