Posted on July 24, 2009 in Uncategorized

The (Half-Assed) Resurrection of the Body: Angel Feathers in the Gorge
part 1

gorge (gôrj)


  1. the throat or gullet
  2. the crop or stomach of a hawk
    1. the maw or stomach of a voracious being or animal
    2. food or a meal to fill or stuff the stomach
    3. the contents of the stomach
  3. a feeling of disgust, anger, etc. it made my gorge rise
  4. the entrance from the rear into a bastion or projecting section of a fortification
  5. a deep, narrow pass between steep heights
  6. ☆ a mass that blocks up a passage

It is no wonder that the zombie has become a leading cultural indicator in the current ‘new age.’ It seems inevitable that the various Copernican revolutions would lead to the final dethroning of all forms of agency and subjectivity, to the point that official rationalist ideologies would leave nothing behind their razed path but mindless matter and soul-less motion.

Oddly enough, such a turn of events may make the idea of the ‘resurrection of the body’ less of a transcendental theological idea and more of a contemporary immanentist conceit. A populist/futurist version of projected resurrection can be encountered in the so-called Toynbee Tiles . (If their origin is correct, the relationship between memorialization and the idea of zombies – that is, half-assed resurrection as a memorialization of rage – becomes more tenable),

And yet….while bandied abut often in techno circles (freezing the body or just freezing the head; or uploading consciousness into a container and robotizing the body into which it would then be downloaded), all of them are about a truncated continuance of existence, a zombified existence; not a re-birth as a portal or threshold or opening. (|) .Apparently this ‘death-in-life’ would be the continuation of the neoliberal state by other means. But whatever it, death, means it is one of the most untouchable of the untouchables while yet remaining the most formative of life.

I like this long piece form Nancy’s Noli me tangere on the ‘non-ness,’ the pushing away of Christ’s resurrection:

“What for religion is the renewal of a presence that bears the phantasmatic assurance of immortality is revealed here to be nothing other than the departing into which presence actually withdraws, bearing its sense in accordance with this parting. Just as it comes, so it goes: this is to say that it IS not, in the sense of something being fixed within presence, immobile and identical to itself, available for use as a concept. “Resurrection” is the uprising [surrection], the sudden appearance of the unavailable, of the other and f the one disappearing IN THE BODY ITSELF AND AS THE BODY. This is not a magical trick. It is the very opposite: the dead body remains dead, and that is what creates the “emptiness” of the tomb, but the body that theology will later call ‘glorious’ (that is, shining with the brilliance of the invisible) reveals that this emptiness is really the emptying out of presence. No, nothing is available here: don’t try to seize upon a meaning for this finite and finished life, don’t try to touch or to hold back what essentially distances itself and, in distancing itself, touches you with its very distance (in both senses: touches you with and from a distance). It is as though it were touching you while permanently disappointing your expectations, touching you with what makes rise up before you, for you, even that which does not rise up. This uprising or insurrection is a glory that devotes itself to disappointing you and to pushing your outstretched hand away. For its brilliance is nothing other than the emptiness of the tomb. The ‘arisen’ does not mediate the one through the other: he exposes (he ‘reveals’) how they are the same absenting, the same gap that one dares not touch, since it is this gap alone that touches us to the quick: o the point of death.”
“The resurrection is not a return to life. It is the glory at the heart of death: a dark glory, whose illumination merges with the darkness of the tomb.

“The glorious body is the one that leaves and at the same time the one that speaks, that speaks only in leaving, that withdraws, withdrawing as much into the darkness of the tomb as into the ordinary appearance of the gardener. Its glory radiates only for eyes that know how to see, and those eyes are nothing but the gardener. But the gardener speaks, and he says the name of she who mourns the departed. To say the name is to say that which both dies and does not die.”

This is a somewhat claustrophobic (non) vision one might say. No wonder that the demotic imagination would prefer UFOs piloted by the dead or telephone calls from the dead, the vast pyramid of the dead waiting to be funneled into ‘here’ from wherever they are (or not – one can hardly say ‘where they are stored’ since that is not exactly what is meant; in fact it becomes hard to say exactly WHAT is meant when speaking of death All we can say is that as long as language continues and that reproduction continues a sort of resurrection continues and which is different from a zombie resurrection of death in life which techno threatens (and oddly enough under the same sort of hubristic expectations that religion engenders in coming up against that black and endless wall.) All life is asymptotic against that wall in a positivist view and a lemniscate of Bernoulli in a more mystical indeterminacy, death a crossing, moving from one node to another., perhaps not resurrection but a recombinant infinite return: Christianity in all its forms (social, bureaucratic, scientific world view) as opposed to the sorceric pagan (one might also call the idea of ‘resurrection’ as a personalized particularity as opposed to the triumph of anonymous materiality.

But what is matter but a continuous string of itself, continuing to coil through itself, returning always to the same place?