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Editorial

Speaking of Šum, the question is not whether the concept of parasite fits, but rather which of its faces can inform future trajectories without falling into trite patterns of the past. Sure, Šum as structural noise, disturbing institutional channels; sure, Šum as eternal guest, feasting at the institutional table. That much is self-evident. But perhaps also Šum as the exchange interface between seemingly incompatible spaces (of reasons): science and myth, theory and tale. A cross-chain protocol proceeding block to block — issue to issue — by diagonalising itself and (its place in) the world at each iterative step along the way, writing “a logic considered irrational up to now, a new epistemology and a new theory of equilibrium”.[1]

In his attempt at theorising this relentless engine of creation, Keith Y. Patarroyo borrows from genetics, economics and thermodynamics amongst other fields to arrive at an intensely interdisciplinary idea of creation as combustion: one and same with life and love. Antipodal to this brightly burning zenith, Neja Zorzut’s murky nadir focuses on the flame’s shadow, collapsing the coordinates with her epigraph: “Love and life appear to be separate only because everything on earth is broken apart by vibrations of various amplitudes and durations.”[2] The fact that something profound looms on the Sky-Earth System’s horizon is further explored in Jannis Köster’s and Adam Louis-Klein’s contributions. Whereas the former theorises the alterity of cultural evolution and the reason why runaway infinite capacities of the voided animal most certainly spell doom, the latter sets off from the surface of a Black Hole to reconnect the Human with “the Generic Ancient at the centre of the Universe”.[3] This recognition of “non-dual unity with ultimate reality”[4] is reapproached in the perfect gnosis of Kazi Adi Shakti, where “the only way out (to the ultimate) is through (the conventional)”;[5] through the displacement of thought’s vicious circle of correlationism by the absolute negation of gnostic continuum. And it is this fascination with the eternal parasitosis that drives Domen Ograjenšek to the crevices and cracks of our most intimate interiorities, where not even our thoughts and desires are safe from the parasitic gaze that we crave in-the-last-instance. “All worlds have a timeline, a beginning and an end. Only the parasite cycles through them and escapes its inescapable finitude.”[6]

Šum has always been faithful to its place in the chain of parasitism, and its sheer existence has provoked a parasitic reaction from the old guard, but something soft nevertheless escaped through the cracks. People ask: “How dare you call for accelerating capital(ism) in the face of a climate emergency? How can you speak of coldness when the Earth is becoming hot?” To which we respond that the world needs proper provocations when a lack of imagination is the problem, when true abstractions are being wasted. Speaking of interfaces: the world needs d(a)emons to respond to the lack of angels, and this is the local maximum we’re ready to die on. Thus, Šum’s vibe has always been the following: “The real horseshoe theory of humanity is that the most dangerous technologies are also the most useful; every curse is a gift, and vice versa.”[7] After all, it’s the future we’re after, and we’re getting there one way or another.

  • 1

    SERRES, Michel, “Picaresques and Cybernetics”, in: The Parasite, Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1982, p. 36.

  • 2

    BATAILLE, J. as quoted in ZORZUT, Neja, “EBB”.

  • 3

    LOUIS-KLEIN, Adam, “The Holographic Sky”, 2022.

  • 4

    ADI SHAKTI, Kazi, “Closing Consciousness, Disclosing Gnosis”.

  • 5

    Ibid.

  • 6

    OGRAJENŠEK, Domen, “The Hyperemotional Complainer (The Parasite and Its Double)”.

  • 7

    TROHA, Tisa, Wadi Rum or the Valley of 99 Names (master’s thesis), Ljubljana: University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Architecture, 2021, p. 35 (trans. VALENČIČ, Maks).

Maks Valenčič

Maks Valenčič is an independent researcher and writer. He tweets at @MaksValencic.

Tisa Troha

Tisa Troha is an architect. Her master’s thesis from the University of Ljubljana explores the inhuman agency of architecture’s technological germ-cell. She sometimes dabbles in design, art, and music, and tweets at @xen0nym.