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Entering the Black Box: Flusser and Indian Philosophy

The aim of this paper is to highlight the most important thoughts on Vilém Flusser’s connections to Indian Philosophy. We analyze his works such as The History of the Devil and Vampyroteuthis Infernalis and correspondences with authors such as Dora Ferreira da Silva or Alex Bloch in order to trace back Indian philosophical influences on his writings, with a specific focus on Yoga Philosophy. The topic ebbs and flows in Flusser’s life: at times he praises the Eastern Wisdom, sometimes he opposes it. Therefore, we try to answer the following questions: What was Flusser’s personal approach to Yoga, and how is its influence evidenced in his writings?

Indian Philosophy (PDF 464.64 KB)

Flusser a metafyzika / Flusser und Metaphysik

Although Flusser proposes to examine human communication from a dispassionate, non-ideological point of view, his analysis is based on metaphysics. In his description of dialogical communication structures we can detect, in fact, a double recourse on metaphysics. On the one hand there are circular dialogues which, according to Flusser, originate in the Greek agora, on the other are certain net dialogues which originate from Jewish philosophy. The first case, a fundamentally Platonic type, is based on an ascending metaphysics, a movement from concrete reality into the realm of truth. In the second case, one is not looking for ideas or abstract principles but moving downwards toward concrete reality in order to find an embodiment for these ideas or principles. These structures allow us to reconsider not only metaphysics itself but also our notions of concrete reality.

Metafyzika (PDF 86.43 KB)
Metaphysik (PDF 84.86 KB)