– but something to which we could not be closer than by palpating it with our look, things we could not dream of seeing “all naked” because the gaze itself envelops them, clothes them with its own flesh – as we put it so aptly – less a color or a thing, therefore, than a difference between things and colors, a momentary crystallization of colored being or of visibility – I do not look at a chaos, but at things – except, it is said, that here the exploration and the information it gathers do not belong “to the same sense” – a passive sentiment of the body and of its space – even more, every displacement of my body – he who is one of them – and why at the same time we are separated from them by all the thickness of the look and of the body – but this paradox – and we will not avoid it – that is, not a permanent object of thought, but a flesh that suffers when it is wounded, hands that touch? – but to decide for this reason alone that our hands do not touch, and to relegate them to the world of objects or of instruments, would be, in acquiescing to the bifurcation of subject and object, to forego in advance the understanding of the sensible and to deprive ourselves of its lights – because its hands, its eyes, are nothing else than – as upon two mirrors facing one another where two indefinite series of images set in one another arise which belong really to neither of the two surfaces, since each is only the rejoinder of the other, and which therefore form a couple, a couple more real than either of them – which is the second and more profound sense of narcissism – God knows how – or if that were the case the difficulty before us would disappear – like that holding between my two eyes – since one eye, one hand, are capable of vision, of touch, and since what has to be comprehended is that these visions, these touches, these little subjectivities, these “consciousnesses of…,” could be assembled like flowers into a bouquet, when each being “consciousness of,” being For Itself, reduces the others into objects – if not yet the incorporeal – and the converse – that do not even go find in the other body their resemblance or their archetype – it yet would be absurd to conceive the touch as a colony of assembled tactile experiences – I believe that I have a man’s senses, a human body – for then it would be the union of contradictories – my right hand touching, I palpate with my left hand only its outer covering – this is not a failure – and as often as I wish – of their exterior horizon, which everybody knows, and of their “interior horizon,” that darkness stuffed with visibility of which their surface is but the limit – no less than is the science of Lavoisier and Ampère – even more so – then …there is to be sure a question as to how the “ideas of the intelligence” are initiated over and beyond, how from the ideality of the horizon one passes to the “pure” ideality, and in particular by what miracle a created generality, a culture, a knowledge come to add to and recapture and rectify the natural generality of my body and of the world – what Proust knew very well and said in another place – which are acquired, available, honorary ideas – not in the sense that under the light of another sun hidden from us they would shine forth but because they are that certain divergence, that never-finished differentiation, that openness ever to be reopened between the sign and the sign, as the flesh is, we said, the dehiscence of the seeing into the visible and of the visible into the seeing – because already, in opening the horizon of the nameable and of the sayable, the speech acknowledged that it has its place in that horizon – which is not to solve but to pose the problem – in short, when it metamorphoses the structures of the visible world and makes itself a gaze of the mind, intuitus mentis


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