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In: Depeche Mode. Jacob Taubes between Politics, Philosophy, and Religion


This essay focuses on Landauer’s mystical writings, which deliver a philosophico-theological justification for his anarchist politics. These are mostly comprised of his own selection and translations of the writings of Meister Eckhart and his critique of Mauthner’s Sprachphilosophie, which appeared under the title Skepticism and Mysticism. Its main subject is the motif of theosis, man becoming God: a doctrine that teaches human beings how to rise above their natural and social conditioning and embrace the ultimate freedom, which thus far had been attributed only to the divine absolute. Landauer takes this motif from his ingenious reading of Meister Eckhart, whom he presents as a procosmic thinker, attempting to maintain a balance between the inward and the outward, the mystical Innerlichkeit and the political common realm of worldly affairs. This delicate balance, which Landauer also detects in the Anabaptist tradition, is based on the dialectical oscillation between the withdrawal from and subsequent return to the world, which is interpreted here as ana-cosmic and ana-communal: wieder-weltlich or worldly-again. This essay puts forward Landauer’s political mysticism as a viable alternative to Marxism and traces its influence on such thinkers as Ernst Bloch, Jacob Taubes, Paul Celan, and Jacques Derrida.

In: Skepsis and Antipolitics: The Alternative of Gustav Landauer


In this article I claim there is no contradiction involved in Franz Rosenzweig’s love of life and his apology for death: what he loves and wants us to love is the finite life, life offered in its finitude which should in the end appear as enough – that is, sufficient and fit for everything we could want from life, redemption included. The beyond toward which death as the end gestures is not a promise of immortality, offering a transcendence in temporal terms infinitely prolonged. The will “to stay, to live,” of which Rosenzweig speaks in the opening paragraph of The Star of Redemption, is the drive characteristic of another finitude: desiring and investing in life, without, at the same time, wishing to prolong itself into infinity.

Open Access
In: The Journal of Jewish Thought and Philosophy